15 Best Nespresso Vertuo Pods

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Not sure which Nespresso capsules to get for your Vertuo machine? Find out the best and most popular Nespresso pods with info on each one.

Six box grid showing five Nespresso Vertuo pods.

Nespresso Vertuo Pods

Nespresso Vertuo machines use dome shaped capsules/pods that contain ground coffee.

The Vertuo machines make espresso, double espresso, lungo, and brewed coffee.

Two different Nespresso pods.

Since there are 2 types of machines and 2 types of capsules, make sure you purchase the correct one for your machine. Original machine capsules won’t work in a Vertuo machine.

RELATED: Best Nespresso Machines

Nespresso Vertuo Machines

You can use Vertuo pods on these Nespresso Vertuo machines:

Nespresso Vertuo Pod Info

There are over 40 Vertuo capsules from Nespresso with varying roasts, flavors, and drink sizes.

Roast
From light (or blonde) to dark, the roast tells you how long the beans were roasted. The darker the roast, the nuttier and deeper the roasted taste.

Intensity
Nespresso rates the intensity from 1 to 11 for Vertuo capsules. The intensity is based on the roast, body, bitterness, and concentration of the coffee. The higher the intensity score, the stronger the coffee in taste. If you find some Nespresso pods too strong, go for a low intensity score.

Caffeine
Caffeine levels for most Nespresso Vertuo pods are in the higher range (130-180 mg) for mug-sized drinks and medium (50-80 mg) for espresso. For comparison, a standard Starbucks single shot of espresso has 75 mg of caffeine and a short (8 oz) Pike Place coffee has 155 mg of caffeine.

Type of coffee
Most are Arabica but some have Robusta combined to create a different flavor profile. Starbucks Nespresso pods only use Arabica beans.

Aromatic notes
Notes like brown sugar or roasted gives you a better idea of how the pod tastes.

Cup sizes
Nespresso Vertuo machines makes 5 sizes of coffee. Espresso, double espresso (double shot), lungo (long shot), and the coffee/mug (7.77 oz) and carafe (18 oz) coffees which are regular brewed coffee like you’d get from a drip coffee machine. The difference between the cup sizes is in how much water is added to make the coffee. Only the Craft Brew capsules are larger because they make an 18 oz carafe of coffee and it’s only available for Vertuo Next machines.

RELATED: Best Nespresso Original Pods

Vertuo Pod Tips

1 pod = 1 drink
Unlike the Original pods which is one pod makes one shot, a Vertuo pod makes a drink from a single espresso shot to a mug-sized coffee from a single pod. The pod’s “dome” size increases by the drink size. So a lungo pod is taller than a single espresso. You can use more than 1 pod for a cup if you like your drink to be extra strong.

Using the same pod twice
Nespresso pods are designed to be used just once, but people do use the same pod twice by pressing the button again right after the first one. It’s not recommended though since reusing a pod will give you weak coffee and the capsule may get stuck in the machine and require repair.

Using pods NOT made by Nespresso
Peet’s Coffee and other third party brands are not recommended since you may void your machine’s warranty or damage it by uding them. The only non-Nespresso brand that can safely be used is Starbucks pods since they’re made by Nespresso.

15 Best Vertuo Pods, Ranked

1. Melozio

Roast: Medium roast
Intensity:
6 out of 11
Caffeine:
High (165 mg)
Type of coffee:
Arabica
Aromatic notes: Smooth, Balanced
Cup sizes:
Coffee/Mug (7.77 oz)

The most popular Vertuo pod by far, Melozio is the one to get if you’re buying pods for the first time and don’t know which ones to start with. There’s also Melozio Boost (more caffeine) and Melozio Decaffeinato (decaffeinated).

2. Bianco Leggero

Roast: Light roast
Intensity: N/A
Caffeine: High (<200 mg)
Type of coffee: Arabica
Aromatic notes: Smooth, Sweet
Cup sizes: Double espresso (2.7 oz)

Bianco Leggero is meant to be served with milk and tastes great iced. No one recommends even trying it without milk. It’s milder and more popular than Bianco Forte.

3. Mexico

Roast: Medium roast
Intensity: 7 out of 11
Caffeine: High (190 mg)
Type of coffee: Robusta & Arabica
Aromatic notes: Intense, Spiced
Cup sizes: Coffee/Mug (7.77 oz)

Mexico is the most popular of the single origin coffees. It’s recommended to have with milk and it’s a favorite to make into an iced coffee.

4. Stormio

Roast: Medium roast
Intensity: 8 out of 11
Caffeine: High (165 mg)
Type of coffee: Arabica
Aromatic notes: Rich, Strong
Cup sizes: Coffee/Mug (7.77 oz)

If you like Intensio and Mexico, you’ll probably like Stormio. It makes a good Americano and works well with half & half. There’s also a Stormio Boost which contains more caffeine.

5. Double Espresso Scuro

Roast: Medium roast
Intensity: 11 out of 11
Caffeine: High (180 mg)
Type of coffee: Robusta & Arabica
Aromatic notes: Dark, Bold
Cup sizes: Double espresso (2.7 oz)

Since the intensity is so high, the taste will come through even if you add syrups or creamers.

6. Odacio

Roast: Medium roast
Intensity: 7 out of 11
Caffeine: High (165 mg)
Type of coffee: Arabica
Aromatic notes: Bold, Lively
Cup sizes: Coffee/Mug (7.77 oz)

People who like Stormio tend to like Odacio since they’re both great for making regular cup of coffee. It’s a popular morning coffee pod.

7. Fortado

Roast: Medium roast
Intensity: 8 out of 11
Caffeine: Very High (200 mg)
Type of coffee: Robusto & Arabica
Aromatic notes: Intense, Full-bodied
Cup sizes: Gran lungo (5 oz)

If you like Diavolitto, you’ll like Fortado. It’s strong!

8. Colombia

Roast: Light roast
Intensity: 5 out of 11
Caffeine: High (165 mg)
Type of coffee: Arabica
Aromatic notes: Sweet, Winey
Cup sizes: Coffee/Mug (7.77 oz)

Liked by those who like coffee with fruity tasting notes but hated by those who need a stronger roasty flavor.

9. Double Espresso Chiaro

Roast: Medium roast
Intensity: 8 out of 11
Caffeine: High (180 mg)
Type of coffee: Arabica
Aromatic notes: Dense, Wild
Cup sizes: Double espresso (2.7 oz)

Double Espresso Chiaro is great for lattes since it goes well with frothed milk and a shot of your favorite syrup.

10. Costa Rica

Roast: Medium roast
Intensity: 7 out of 11
Caffeine: High (135 mg)
Type of coffee: Arabica
Aromatic notes: Malty, Sweet
Cup sizes: Gran lungo (5 oz)

People who like Fortado with milk and Mexico also like Costa Rica.

11. Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast

Roast: Starbucks Blonde roast
Intensity: 6 out of 11
Caffeine: Medium (72 mg)
Type of coffee: Arabica
Aromatic notes: Smooth, Sweet
Cup sizes: Espresso (1.35 oz)

The most popular of the Starbucks Nespresso pods, Starbucks Blonde makes a smooth and balanced espresso. It’s great for making homemade Starbucks drinks like Iced Shaken Espresso or Iced Caramel Macchiato.

12. Ice Leggero

Roast: Medium roast
Intensity: 8 out of 11
Caffeine: High (130-200 mg)
Type of coffee: Arabica
Aromatic notes: Toasted cereal, Fruity
Cup sizes: Double espresso (2.7 oz)

If you love iced espresso drinks, this is the one to try! It’s meant to be made for iced beverages.

13. Altissio

Roast: Dark roast
Intensity: 9 out of 11
Caffeine: Medium (63 mg)
Type of coffee: Robusta & Arabica
Aromatic notes: Full-bodied, Creamy
Cup sizes: Espresso (1.35 oz)

If you like Stormio and Colombia, you’ll probably like Altissio. Try it in an affogato.

14. Bianco Forte

Roast: Dark roast
Intensity: N/A
Caffeine: High (165 mg)
Type of coffee: Arabica
Aromatic notes: Dark roasted, Balanced
Cup sizes: Coffee/Mug (7.75 oz)

Created to be served with milk, Bianco Forte is an intense and dark roasted coffee. People seem to either love it or hate it.

15. Diavolitto

Roast: Dark roast
Intensity: 11 out of 11
Caffeine: High (150 mg)
Type of coffee: Robusta & Arabica
Aromatic notes: Intense, Powerful
Cup sizes: Espresso (1.35 oz)

An intensely roasted espresso, Diavolitto (or “little devil” as it is called in Italian) has many fans and haters. It’s high intensity score means it’s favored by those who prefer a really full-bodied coffee with a strong roast flavor and bitterness.

Popular Limited Edition Vertuo Pods

  • Forest Fruits
  • Hawaii Kona
  • La Cumplida Refinada
  • Cafe de Cuba
  • Vanilla Princess Cake
  • Nordic Black
  • Italia Amaretti
  • Forest Almond
  • Gingerbread
  • Tropical Coconut Over Ice

Questions You May Have

Does a high intensity score means there’s a lot of caffeine?

No, while it is possible that a higher intensity coffee also has more caffeine, a higher intensity score just means it’s more roasty, fuller bodied, and more bitter.

How much caffeine is in a cup of Vertuo pod coffee?

According to Nespresso, all “coffee capsules”, which are usually mug-sized (7.77 oz), have 130-200 mg per cup and caffeinated Gran Lungo pods have between 120-200 mg of caffeine. The espressos are the same for Original as Vertuo, around 60-100 mg, while Double Espressos are under 200 mg per capsule. Decaffeinated Vertuo pods have 12 mg or less of caffeine.

What is the difference between Original and Vertuo pods?

First, the pods are shaped differently and are not interchangeable. Original machines only make espresso while Vertuo machines make espresso and brewed coffee. Vertuo is for those who like espresso and drip-style coffees.

Are Starbucks pods made by Nespresso?

Starbucks pods are made by Nespresso. Because they are made by Nespresso, using them will not void the warranty on your Vertuo machine, unlike third-party pods.

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