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So, who received a Keurig single serve coffee brewer for Christmas? If you’re one of the lucky recipients, then pretty soon your stash of K-Cups is going to run out. Like the rest of us, you’ll be on the hunt for affordable K-Cups or single serve cups that also offer up a great cup of coffee. I’ll be straight with you — that coffee expedition doesn’t always end well. This comes from someone who’s sampled just about every single serve coffee that finds itself on a grocery shelf. Check here, here and here for some of my other single serve reviews.

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I was tickled a couple of months ago when I was snooping around Trader Joe’s and came across boxes of medium roast, single serve coffee cups with the Trader Joe’s moniker splashed on the label. I snapped up a box and quickly went straight to my Keurig coffee brewer to sample the goods.

I’ve got a love affair going with Trader Joe’s. And like any long-term, passionate relationship, it has its ups and downs. Highlights include the Lilliputian cornichons, those puckery petite pickles from France. Next to France, this is the best place on earth to purchase them at a ridiculously affordable price. Not fond of most of the pasta sauces in a jar at Trader Joe’s, but I just avoid them. They’re not a reason to break up.

So, what did I think when I sipped my first cup of Trader Joe’s single serve coffee? Keep the romance going or break it off? Check out my review:

Trader Joe’s Coffee Cups Single Serve Cups, medium roast, $2.99 for a box of 7 cups.

First look: This is a medium roast coffee made with 100-percent Arabica beans. While you might not notice it right away, the label does say that there are seven single serve cups in the box. Unlike traditional K-Cups, Trader Joe’s single serve coffee cups don’t feature a foil top and solid plastic cup design.

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As you can see, the Trader Joe’s single serve cups have a thin plastic film top and soft mesh sides reinforced with hard plastic strips. Open the box and you’ll find that each cup is individually wrapped.

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Good news: At just under 43 cents per single serving, Trader Joe’s coffee cups are well under the average price for most single serve cups. It’s a medium roast, so it’s not a wimpy cup of joe. Since each cup is wrapped in air tight packets, the coffee can stay fresh. The cups are recyclable. 

Bad news: Because the cups are individually wrapped, the box only holds seven servings, which is inconvenient when it comes to storage. For instance, the box is slightly larger than Tully’s K-Cup, which holds 12 K-Cups.

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But, really, it’s about the flavor when it comes to coffee, isn’t it? And that’s where Trader Joe’s coffee cups and I have to part ways. I had a few other people taste it, and we all agreed that it reminded us of the ground coffee that came out of a metal can. And not the upscale brand, either. It had a slightly bitter finish, without any of the rich flavors we expect from a good cup of coffee. Someone mentioned that it was reminiscent of old-timey coffee shop coffee. Not a compliment.

Last words: If you like a dull cup of joe, go ahead and give Trader Joe’s Coffee Cups a whirl.

Have you tried Trader Joe’s Coffee Cups? If so, what did you think? Would you buy them again?