Some of the best warm drinks are drinks like lattes and hot chocolate. Of course, these particular drinks are always improved with the addition of milk.
The challenge is that when you make them with milk, it takes some specialty work and usually even specialty machines to add that milk and warm it.
The challenge with using milk in a typical coffee maker is that most of these machines are not really designed to work with milk. It takes some specific care and processing to use milk, particularly for cleaning the machine.
While it might seem like a great idea to simply pour milk instead of water into your coffee maker, it might not come out great in the end.
Can you put milk in a Keurig? There are some Keurig models and other coffee pot models that are designed with a milk station as part of the machine. However, unless you are working with one of these models, we don’t recommend adding milk into the water reservoir for preparing your coffee or other warm drink.
In this guide, we will share with you all of the details to the question can you put milk in a Keurig.
There are several things to know here and maybe even a few possible alternative solutions so you can still make your coffee, hot chocolate, tea, or whatever it is you drink with milk!
Keep reading to learn when milk can be put in a Keurig and more.
Can You Put Milk In A Keurig?
The short answer to whether or not you can put milk in a Keurig or any other type of coffee pot is no.
Unfortunately, the majority of these machines are simply not made to work with milk so what happens is when you place milk in the water reservoir, it actually taints the lines and may lead to further issues.
With that in mind, we do want to point out there are some machines out there that work really great for milk.
The difference in these machines and your traditional single-serve Keurig machine is that they have a reservoir specifically for milk.
Coffee Machines Safe For Milk Use
Here is a quick look at a Keurig machine that is designed to be used with milk and will work well if you want to make something that uses milk in the process.
The K-Café Keurig is perfect if you want to make any type of coffee drink that requires milk or frothing or anything like that.
It has your traditional water reservoir but then it also has a milk reservoir that is specifically designed to house milk or cream products.
It’s simple to work and can be used for hot chocolate and tea as well as other things like lattes and espressos and cappuccinos.
The milk can be warmed and heated. It won’t actually brew into your drink like the water does.
Basically, the way it works is you brew your coffee or whatever else you might be brewing and then you add to it with the froth or milk of your choice, which is housed in the frother of the machine until you are ready to use it.
What to Expect if You Put Milk in the Keurig
Unfortunately, putting milk in the water reservoir of your Keurig probably isn’t going to end well. There are several different things that can happen.
- Spoiled milk
- Burnt milk
- Scorched metal
Let’s talk about each of these so you know just how the milk plays a role in the issue.
This is going to be your biggest issue that you run up against if you put milk in your Keurig.
That water reservoir is not really designed to house milk so while you probably won’t have spoiled milk right away, there are long term things that lead to spoiled milk.
Obviously, if you just leave extra milk setting in the water reservoir, that milk will spoil overnight. However, the problem of spoiled milk really goes beyond just the initial placement of milk.
Milk tends to spoil very quickly when it is at room temperature so it is safe to say milk shouldn’t be left there for more than just a few minutes really.
However, even if the entire amount of milk is used, it leaves behind milk residue. Even residue left behind is a risk here and that residue can affect the water you use next.
The residue can spoil and sour just like the milk itself so you will quickly find a sour smell where any milk residue may be remaining.
Remember that the milk ends up in more places than just the reservoir so the residue will be other places in your machine as well.
Another common issue with using milk in the Keurig is that the milk will actually more likely burn in the process.
The Keurig is designed so that the liquid from the water reservoir is boiled and done so very quickly. The machine is made to boil water in less than a minute from that reservoir.
While this works great for water, it’s not so great on milk. It actually burns the milk instead of simply warming it, which is what you really want to happen.
The rapid heating time burns the milk and makes it taste sour. It also smells really awful.
Finally, a problem that could potentially happen that might actually harm your Keurig is it has the potential to mess with the heating elements.
Since the milk burns inside of the system from superheating, it actually can turn to curd, causing it to stick to your heating elements.
This causes the metal of the heating element to scorch and it leads to build-up from the curdled milk in the system as well.
At this point, it becomes very challenging to clean up the mess because you can’t really just dip the heating element in water or toss it in the dishwasher to get it cleaned out. Cleaning the mess will be the tricky thing.
If you or someone in your household already tried running milk through the Keurig, there are ways to clean the machine, however.
Tips For Cleaning Your Keurig
If you’re reading this and cringing because the deed is already done, all is not lost. You don’t have to just throw away the Keurig and get a new one, you still have options.
There are ways to deep clean your machine and while it may not be a super simple process, it will most likely save your Keurig.
Follow these steps:
- Turn off and unplug your Keurig. Grab the owner’s manual and some tools.
- You will need to take apart your Keurig. Do so carefully, following the manual and keeping pieces organized and together as you go.
- As you find places inside of the machine that have crusty milk residue, use a scrubber sponge to start cleaning away the mess. Clean gently so you don’t damage parts.
- Separately, boil a bit of water on the stove or in a kettle. Add about 1/2 cup of vinegar to the boiled water. You can also add baking soda but be mindful that this can thicken the solution.
- Place the boiled water and the vinegar in the water reservoir of the Keurig and allow it to just soak for some time. Use your scrubber and clean out the reservoir afterward.
- Unhook the internal hoses and allow them to drain. Rinse them if possible.
- Reassemble the machine.
- Run 2-3 regular cleaning cycles per the manual’s instructions prior to using the machine again.
- Finally, run 2-3 cycles with just water and no K-pod to finish rinsing everything out
Pod Options For Hot Milk
If you want to use a Keurig pod for something like hot chocolate or hot tea and you want the ability to add some hot milk, you simply need to look for an alternative method.
Again, you can always try out the K-Café, which is designed to be used with milk and then you can just pair it with your favorite pod. There are also some K-pods that have milkier options and may be a good choice.
Here are some great options to consider!
Grove Square Hot Cocoa, Milk Chocolate
If you want a milky hot chocolate, try out a milk chocolate hot cocoa rather than a traditional hot cocoa.
While it won’t be the perfect alternative, it will be slightly sweeter and will have a milkier finish than a traditional hot cocoa might.
This particular option gives you creamy cocoa in a cup.
Happy Belly Tea Pods Chai Latte
If you’re looking for a hot tea with milk in it, check out these chai latte pods from the Amazon brand.
It’s your traditional chai latte and it does contain milk as part of the ingredients for brewing the perfect tea combination.
You get tea and you get the milky addition without ruining your Keurig.
New England Coffee, Hazelnut Crème
Lastly, try a coffee that has crème in it and forget having to add your own milk.
These hazelnut crème coffees are the perfect option with crème already included in the coffee.
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