How to Clean a Coffee Maker

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If you’re a coffee drinker like us but new to making your own, you may be wondering how to clean a coffee maker. With tons of different methods from a cup baking soda or a vinegar solution and products out there to use, it may seem overwhelming choosing the right one. Don’t worry, in this article we will make it much easier for you as we go over three different cleaning methods for cleaning your coffee machine. It will make your cup of coffee taste better.

Cleaning a coffee maker.


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Knowing how to clean a coffee system will save you time and effort, especially if you are a frequent coffee drinker. Whether you use a Keurig, Breville, Ninja, Bunn, or just any classic coffee maker, this tutorial will tell you three different ways to clean your machines.

When it comes to cleaning your coffee pot, there are many different cleaners out there. Depending on preference, there is much to consider when choosing which is right for you. Here is a list of some of the best cleaners for you depending on your budget, contents, and type you are looking for.

If you’re looking for recipes that use coffee, try these Blueberry Coffee Cake Recipe, Southern Coffee Punch and Easy Caramel Iced Coffee.

Descaling Method to Clean a Coffee Maker

Descaling eliminates calcium, magnesium, and other minerals in your coffee system from home water, including limescale. The descaling process may consist of cleaning your machine via vinegar or specialized descaling tablets.

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Check below for how to descale your coffee maker!

Vinegar & Alternative Method

The most common method for cleaning your coffee machine is by using vinegar. This includes the descaling method as well. By combining vinegar and water, it creates a simple cleaning solution in which we will speak about in our how-to guide below.

Though, not everyone would like to or can use a vinegar mixture. An alternative method to using vinegar is cleaning your coffee maker with baking soda and water. Check out the steps below!

Vinegar for cleaning the coffee maker.

Stain Removal with Baking Soda

Just a little baking soda is required to remove coffee stains. Add a small enough amount to discolored dishwater or a cup, then add sufficient water to form a paste, and scrub. The gentle abrasion of the baking soda will get rid of stains within a few minutes. Then, just rinse and wash normally.

Way to Clean A Coffee System

Whether you need to descale your machine, or if you need to simply run your coffee machine through a quick cleaning cycle, here are the easiest ways for knowing how to clean a coffee maker.

These are the basic steps for How to Clean a Coffee Maker. Refer to the full, printable how-to card below for detailed instructions.

Baking soda to clean your coffee maker.


Fill the reservoir on your machine to max using half water and half white distilled vinegar.

Run a brew or a cleaning cycle (depending on your machine abilities) and then empty the carafe.

Using fresh, cool water only, go through 2-3 more brewing/cleaning cycles.


Just like how you would when descaling, mix equal parts water and white distilled vinegar and fill your machine’s reservoir. Lemon juice will work as well.

Run your machine through a drip cycle, and once completed run through two rinse cycles with just water.

Use Baking Soda to Clean Coffee Maker and Coffee Pot

Mix a cup of warm water with 1/4 cup of baking soda

Run this baking soda solution through one single cycle in your machine to keep your coffee machine like new.

Once completed, flush the coffee system by running brew cycle with hot clean water, rinse the coffee pot until the water runs clear again.

Rinsing your coffee pot.

How to Clean My Coffee Maker FAQs

Without proper care, coffee residue and mineral buildup can wreak havoc on your machine from water and coffee grounds, affecting the quality of your brew and even causing your brewer to malfunction. You should clean your coffee maker every three to six months, depending on how often you use it.

Do not use dish soap in your coffee maker. While it may be tempting to clean your machine with it, this can be harmful to your coffee maker and leave behind an unpleasant residue.

Regular vinegar is a common cleaning agent for coffee makers; distilled white vinegar works best for coffee maker with vinegar. However, in a pinch, apple cider vinegar is an effective and low-cost solution that will work just as well as distilled vinegar to keep your coffee machine clean.

Expert Tips for Cleaning a Coffee Pot and Coffee Machine

  • Tip 1: It is okay to run your machine through multiple cycles with water after first cleaning with vinegar or baking soda. Run through as many cycles as you need so that there is no funky taste or residue left behind.
  • Tip 2: You don’t need to clean your machine very often. Every few months will suffice if you clean it and remove all buildup. Though, if you notice a weird taste to your coffee it is okay to do it more often.
  • Tip 3: There are a few alternatives to using vinegar to clean your machine. Whether this be baking soda or a store bought cleanser, it is all dependent on personal preference and there is no incorrect way.

More Cleaning Resources to Clean Coffee Maker

If you’re looking to clean more products, such as grills, check out How to Clean a Blackstone Griddle. If you want to know more about cleaning coffee makers, Keurig explains it all. Chocolate Salted Caramel Iced Coffee is one our most popular coffee recipes.

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