How To Use Keurig Rinse Pods (For Fast & Effective Cleaning)

As someone who enjoys having a Keurig coffee every morning, I soon noticed that my Keurig was getting dirty.

After some research, I discovered the cleaning pods and decided to test them out, and now I use them weekly!

If you've always wondered how to use Keurig Rinse Pods, I've got all the easy instructions here for you.

I've also done some research on rinse pods vs descaling solutions, answered frequently asked questions, and so much more!

Using a Keurig Rinse Pod isn't a difficult process at all. I've tested the cleaning process out on my own, and now I can pretty much do it with my eyes closed.

All it takes is a couple of steps. Here's the step-by-step instructions:

1. Add Water To The Tank

To start, you'll want to plug your Keurig machine into the wall. Then, fill the water reservoir to the max fill line before placing it back onto the machine and switching it on.

2. Insert One Of The Rinse Pods Into The K-Cup Pod Holder

Place a large collecting cup onto the drip tray before lifting the brewer handle and placing one of the Keurig Rinse Pods inside the K cup holder.

Then, you'll lower the handle to close the pod holder section before starting the brew cycle.

Inserting The Rinse Pods Into The K Cup Pod Holder

3. Begin The Brewing Process

To begin the brewing process, you'll need to press the 8-ounce cup button.

Then, wait as the Keurig Rinse Pod inside does its magic. It'll not only break down the oil but also the grime residue within the pod holder and exit spout, along with any clogs on the exit needle.

4. Remove The Rinse Pod

When you're done, go ahead and dispose of the water within the collecting mug.

You can also lift the handle and remove the used Keurig Rinse Pod.

5. Run A Water-Only Cycle

That's not all!

Now that you've used Keurig cleaning pods for your coffee maker, it's time to make sure that your coffee machine brews a fresh cup of coffee without any residual odor from the pods.

To do so, you'll want to return the collecting mug to the drip tray and run another cleansing brew with only fresh water.

Do this once or twice, and you can go ahead and get started with brewing coffee.

Running A Water Cycle On A Keurig

What Exactly Is A Keurig Rinse Pod? 

Keurig cleaning pods look similar to K cups, and they help with cleaning the K cup holder of your brewer.

Specifically, the rinse pods clean:

  • The K cup holder
  • The brewer funnel
  • Exit needles

As someone who uses my Keurig frequently,

I've noticed that when I use Keurig rinse pods, it helps not only get rid of coffee residues and oil but also helps remove the flavors of my previous brew.

I would say Keurig Rinse Pods are a must-have for Keurig owners.

A common misconception - including one that I made myself - is that these Keurig Rinse Pods will clean the internal parts of my Keurig.

That's not true, however, as these Keurig rinse pods only clean the pod holder.

What’s Actually Inside A Keurig Rinse Pod? 

I've always been curious about the special formula inside a Keurig Rinse Pod, so I opened it up, and what I found inside was natural cleaning agents that are heated up during the brewing process and help ensure you've got a clean Keurig pod holder.

So, what are the non toxic cleaning agents within the Keurig Rinse Pod?

Citric Acid

Citric acid is an effective synthetic chemical that's great at getting rid of hard water stains and calcium buildup.[1]

Since citric acid is something you can naturally find in citrus foods, it doesn't leave behind a strong taste - something that you'll normally find in other acid-based cleansers.


A white powder processed from natural starches such as rice, wheat, and potato. Maltodextrin is a binding agent for cleaning products.

Sodium Citrate

An acid neutralizer, sodium citrate is also a cleaning agent.[2]

Since it reduces the amount required to clean appliances, it doesn't just speed up the cleaning process and makes it more effective.

Sodium Bicarbonate

Commonly known as baking soda, sodium bicarbonate is another great substitute for chemical-based cleaning products.

It's also extremely effective in giving your K cup holder a deep clean and getting rid of grease and dirt that might be accumulating.

Checking Description Of The Keurig Rinse Pod

4 Tell-Tale Signs It’s Time To Use A Keurig Rinse Pod

Wondering when you should use a Keurig Rinse Pod? Here's some tell-tale signs:

1. The taste of your coffee isn’t quite the same

This is a big one for me as it's a must that I have a tasty cup of coffee every morning.

When I've noticed that my brew starts tasting like leftover coffee, that's when it's time to use Keurig rinse pods!

It happens because the leftover coffee oil from previous brews gets stuck in the brew chamber of the coffee maker.

By removing residue, you'll also remove the flavor carryover and get to enjoy a large cup of your current brew with no issues.

2. You've noticed chalky water (aka built-up deposits)

It's time to use Keurig Rinse Pods if you've noticed chalky water. The pods can help with getting rid of hard water deposits and mineral build-ups.

3. your brewing process is taking longer than usual

If it's taking longer than usual for you to get your next cup of coffee, your Keurig coffee maker may have clogs or blockages.

Keurig Rinse Pods can help with clearing clogs and dissolving pollutants that could have been caused by leftover coffee grinds.

4. A residual smell

Notice your beverages tasting odd? The residual smell could be caused by leftover scents and tastes from your brew.

By using rinse pods, the citric acid and other ingredients that also serve as an acid neutralizer can help ensure that you've got fresh coffee.

Hand Getting A Cup Of Coffee From A Cleaned Keurig

How Often Do You Need To Use Rinse Pods?

Keurig recommends that you use the Keurig rinse pods at least once a week or after you've used a K cup that has a strong flavor - such as flavored coffee.

I suggest you follow Keurig's advice but also do what suits you best. If you drink coffee or flavored beverages often, you should do it more frequently - it depends on your requirements!

Keurig Rinse Pod Vs Descaling (What’s The Difference?)

Keurig rinse pods, and a descaling solution are both very different from each other.

To illustrate the differences between rinse pods vs descaling solution, I've created a table for reference:

Keurig Rinse Pods

Descaling Solutions

What does it do, and what is its effectiveness?

Helps to clean the holder of the brewer and is extremely effective

The descaling solution prevents and removes mineral build-up, effective in doing so

How to use it?

You place it in the holder

You use it in the water tank to clean the internal parts of the coffee machine

How often do you use it?

At least once a week

Every three to six months

Any odor?

Leaves no to little smell

Leaves a strong odor that can only be removed by several water cycles


Citric acid, baking soda, sodium citrate, maltodextrin

Descaling solution contains citric acid, silicic acid, bleaching agents, water

Related Keurig Rinse Pod Questions

Are Keurig rinse pods toxic?

No, Keurig rinse pods are not toxic and only contain natural cleaning agents.

Do Keurig rinse pods descale?

No, Keurig rinse pods do not descale. They only clean a portion of the machine - aka the pod holder.

Will my coffee taste bad after using a Keurig rinse pod?

No, your coffee beverage will not taste bad after using Keurig Rinse Pods. If you are worried, you can always run a water-only cycle a few times just to be sure.

Where can you buy Keurig Rinse pods?

You can buy Keurig rinse pods on Amazon, Target, Walmart, and from the Keurig website itself.

[amazon box="B06XH8BLS8"]

Start Using Keurig Rinse Pods Today!

When it comes to how to use Keurig Rinse pods, many Keurig owners agree that they're an effective cleaning agent that's not just convenient but also odorless, easy to replace, and essential for ensuring you've got a fantastic brew every time.

Just note that this special cleaning pod doesn't descale your machine. To do that, you'll need to purchase a descaling solution.



Karmy Widjaja


Karmy Widjaja
Karmy Widjaja, holding a degree in Hospitality Administration, combines her academic background with a profound passion for the world of coffee. Her work is enriched with a wealth of insights, not only about the art of coffee making but also about the broader aspects of the coffee industry. Her quest for coffee perfection is a central theme in her engaging articles, as she continues to explore the vibrant coffee scene in Perth. And when it's time for a coffee break? Karmy's all about a laid-back flat white with almond milk – it's her go-to for a tasty coffee kick.

My favorite drink? I'd go with... flat white with almond milk.

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