As anyone who has owned a Keurig knows, these popular coffee makers can sometimes develop built-up residue that affects the taste of your coffee. If this happens, it’s important to clean your machine on a regular basis. While many people use vinegar as a cleaning solution but sometimes they worry about the vinegar smell that lingers after cleaning it.
The best way to clean a Keurig without vinegar is by using Keurig’s brand of descaling solution because they are specifically designed to clean coffee makers. But there are actually a few other options that can be just as effective. In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the different ways to clean a Keurig without vinegar.
Why Not Vinegar?
The strong smell of vinegar is the main reason why you might want to avoid using it to clean your Keurig coffee machine. Remove this smell that lingers after cleaning it. You might need to use more water and spend more time rinsing the coffee machine.
Besides this, vinegar may not be as effective to kill bacteria, you may need to perform multiple cycles in order to kill them.
Can You Clean Keurig Without Vinegar?
Despite the fact that vinegar is a convenient cleaning agent but there are actually a few other options that can be just as effective. Citric acid or lemon juice can also help to remove build-up from the water reservoir, Baking soda can also be used to scrub away stubborn stains, and bleach powder can be used to disinfect the coffee machine.
Paper clip cleaning tools are designed specifically for cleaning out the small holes in Keurig brewers. There are also Keurig rinse pods that can be used to clean the entire machine. Whichever method you choose, taking the time to clean your Keurig coffee maker will help to ensure that you always enjoy a delicious cup of coffee.
How to Clean Keurig Without Vinegar: Best Ways
Using Citric Acid or Lemon Juice
If you are wondering how to clean a Keurig without vinegar, then using citric acid or lemon juice is a great alternative. Both of these agents are effective at removing grease and dirt, and they also have the added benefit of not leaving behind a strong odour. Lemon juice specifically contains around 5% citric acid, which makes it a great natural cleaning solution. In addition, the fragrance is refreshing and will leave your coffee maker smelling great.
- Mix 2 cups of citric acid with 4 cups of water. If you are using lemon juice, mix 50/50 of lemon juice and water.
- Pour the mixture into the Keurig water reservoir. Fill the reservoir to the top for optimum results.
- Place a large cup or mug under the brew head and set up your brewer. Don’t put a K-Cup in, instead push the brew button after lowering the brew head.
- Dispose of the cleaning solution and repeat as necessary.
- If your Keurig’s tank is big, you may need to repeat the process many times. Keep brewing with the cleaning solution until the tank is empty.
- Fill the reservoir with water and run a rinse cycle.
- It should now be clean and ready to brew a tasty cup of coffee.
Using a Commercial Descaling Solution
When you clean your machine using the descaling solution, it removes any residual coffee grinds that could have remained after brewing and also breaks down the calcium buildup on the walls of the inner components, helping to restore normal brewer function. This process should be done every few months, or as needed, to maintain peak performance from your Keurig coffee machine.
- Empty the water from the reservoir and remove the Keurig Water Filter.
- Press the power button to turn the brewer off. Pour the entire bottle of Keurig Descaling Solution into the water reservoir.
- Press the power button to turn the brewer back on. Run a rinsing brew by placing a large mug on the drip tray
- Repeat the rinsing brew process until the ‘add water light comes on.
- Let the brewer stand for 30 minutes while it’s still turned on. After 30 minutes, rinse the reservoir thoroughly.
- Fill the reservoir with fresh water to the max fill line. Using the largest brew size, run at least 12 rinsing brews.
Keurig Descaling Solution & Water Filter Cartridges
Descaler – Made in the USA
Using Liquid Dish Soap
Dish soap is a great way to clean your Keurig coffee maker because it’s inexpensive and it will help you keep things squeaky clean. All you need is a little bit of liquid or mild dish soap and Warmwater.
Cleaning your coffee maker with liquid dish soap is much like washing your dishes by hand.
- Disassemble your Keurig machine and clean all of the detachable components.
- Clean the coffee pot with liquid dish soap and rinse it off.
- You should also wash and rinse the K-cup holder, filter, and water reservoir.
- Be sure to dry the pot before putting the components back in the machine.
- Mix 50/50 mixture of Soap and water. Pour the mixture into your water tank, and then start the brewing cycle.
- Repeat the process with just warm water through the machine to check that everything has been cleaned properly and is in its rightful place.
- Once everything is clean, your Keurig will be ready to make coffee again.
Note: This method will produce similar results to using vinegar.
Using Baking Soda
Baking soda can be used as a natural cleanser in place of lemon juice and vinegar if you don’t want to use them. Some people like to clean their Keurig with baking soda since it’s a natural disinfectant.
- Make a Mixture of 1/4 cup of baking soda and water.
- Pour the mixture into the water reservoir and
- Run a brew cycle without using a k-cup or selecting a size.
- Place a coffee cup on the drip tray and also remove the pods and filter.
- Repeat this process once more with just plain water to remove any residual baking soda taste.
- Fill the reservoir with water and run a rinse cycle.
Once you’re done, your keurig coffee machine should be working again.
Using Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is a powerful cleaning agent that is effective in killing algae, mold and bacteria. It can also disinfect surfaces. If you’re looking for a helpful cleaning method to produce better outcomes, using hydrogen peroxide is a great option.
- Disassemble your Keurig and clean detachable components with water.
- Empty the water reservoir and refill it halfway with water and add 5 oz of hydrogen peroxide to it.
- Run a rinsing brew by placing a large mug on the drip tray without using a k-cup.
- Let the machine sit for fifteen minutes. if you let it sit for long your coffee maker risks a correction
- Repeat this process once more with just plain water to remove any hydrogen peroxide sitting within your coffee maker.
- Rinse the reservoir with warm water and refill it back up with fresh water for brewing.
Using a Paper Clip Cleaning Tool
If you have coffee grounds stuck in the needles of your Keurig, a paper clip or needle can come in handy. You can use it to punch the entrance and exit points where the water flows through the K-cups. This will help loosen any coffee grounds that are clogging the system.
- Lift the brew head (where the K-cup goes) and take out the K-Cup pod holder.
- Use an unfolded paper clip to poke at the hole that houses the exit needle,
- Gently move the paperclip around, attempting to remove move any clogs that may be hindering its functioning.
- Repeat the process until all the cycles are clear for the ground.
- Do the same with the entry needle located on the brew head.
- Rinse the pod holder and funnel with running tap water.
- Fill the reservoir with water and run 2 brew cycles with water only.
If you have a Keurig 2.0 model, there’s no need to stress about cleaning the needles. These models come with a needle-cleaning tool that does all the work for you.
Using Keurig Rinse Pods
Just like an ordinary K-Cup, you can use a rinse pod to clean your Keurig. These pods are a great way to clean the coffee grind residue off on the K-Cup holder, brewer funnel, and exit needle. Start by running a brew cycle with just water. Then, insert the rinse pod and run another brew cycle. The rinse pod will clean the interior of your coffee maker and remove any residual coffee oils. You can find rinse pods at most major retailers or online. Just be sure to follow the instructions on the package for the best results.
Using Cream of Tartar
Cream of tartar/ tartaric acid is a white powder that’s a byproduct of wine production. It’s used to add acidity and flavour to food, as well as to clean unsightly stains from electric makers. It can also be used to clean tarnish from metals. Because of this, you can maintain a high degree of cleanliness, similar to that found in vinegar
- Make a mixture of 3 tablespoons of cream of tartar and 3 cups of water.
- Pour the mixture into the water reservoir and start a brew cycle without using a k-cup.
- Place a large mug on the drip tray and also remove the pods and filter.
- Repeat the rinsing brew process with warm water to ensure that all cream of tartar is removed.
- Fill the reservoir with water and start a rinse cycle.
Frequently Asked Question
How Often Should I Clean My Keurig?
You should descale your Keurig every three months. But cleaning the external parts of the machine with a damp cloth and washing the reservoir and mug tray with soap and water regularly. Cleaning and draining your keurig coffee maker will prevent coffee stains and the accumulation of dirt.
How to Get Vinegar Taste out of Keurig Coffee Maker?
If your Keurig coffee maker has recently been descaled with vinegar, you may notice a vinegar taste in your next cup. This is normal and can be easily fixed by placing a paper filter in the basket and running a freshwater cycle through the machine. The vinegar flavor and odor will be eliminated. If the vinegar smell persists, run at least two more brew cycles with plain water only.
Overall, there are several ways to clean a Keurig without using vinegar. Each method has its own set of benefits and limitations.
Using citric acid is a natural and safe alternative to vinegar, and it is specifically designed for cleaning coffee makers. A commercial descaling solution is also a great option for cleaning your Keurig. Liquid dish soap is another option for cleaning your Keurig. Lastly, baking soda is a natural and effective alternative to vinegar, and a common household item.
It’s important to clean your Keurig on a regular basis to ensure the best performance and taste of your coffee. Each method has its own set of benefits and limitations, so it’s essential to choose the method that best suits your needs and preferences.
Nicholas’ coffee journey started at a very young age, as it has always been a part of his family. His parents operated five coffee shops throughout upstate New York during his childhood. Nicholas brings with him over 15 years of experience in the beverage industry, where he has held various sales and marketing roles at both domestic and international companies.