I’ve purchased, owned, and used both the K-Slim and the two different versions of the K-Mini, the regular Mini and the Plus version. Not only have I used all of these machines but I’ve collectively brewed probably around 500 k-cups in these machines so I know how they work and how they differ and today I want to share with you what I’ve learned about each of these Keurig K-Cup coffee makers.
There are actually a good number of differences between these machines but only a few main differences that are actually important. To start this article off I’d like to first summarize the important differences right off the bat.
The K-Slim has a small attached water reservoir in the rear compared to a single cup reservoir in the upper rear of the K-Mini and the K-Mini Plus. The Mini will brew all of the water in the reservoir, regardless of how much is used while the K-Slim will pull 8, 10, or 12oz of water from it’s reservoir based on which selection you press. Only the K-Mini Plus offers a “Strong” button which will slow the brew process down so that the coffee tastes better.
In addition to those important differences are the minor things. These minor differences will probably only be important to a small number of people that that are shopping for entry level Keurig machines. Further into this article I’ll cover minor differences such as dimensions, the time required to brew a cup of coffee, the brew size selections, and the temperature of the coffee when it gets to your cup just to name a few.
But first I made a video comparing these two machines that I want to show you. It should address a lot of your questions and then after the video we’ll get more granular.
Does The K-Mini or K-Slim Make Better Coffee?
If you want to compare these machines based soley on their ability to make good coffee then your best bet will be the K-Mini Plus, followed by the K-Mini. The K-Slim simply doesn’t have the ability to make very good coffee under any circumstances.
The vast majority of k-cups start producing pretty week coffee as your cup size gets to 8-ounces and above but the K-Slim doesn’t give you the option to brew anything smaller than an eight ounce cup so you will always get somewhat weak coffee out of it.
The two K-Mini’s however are designed to be water-in-water-out systems so if you put 6.5 ounces into the reservoir then that’s how much coffee your machine will make. You can make anything between six and twelve ounces of coffee and for me I like brewing about 7oz cups out of my machines as this gives me a slightly bigger cup while minimizing the watering down effect of using too much water.
Of the two K-Mini machines the K-Mini Plus offers a “Strong” button which is why I say it will make the best tasting coffee of the three machines. The strong button will slow the flow of water through the k-cup giving you a more complete flavor extraction. When you use this setting your coffee brews slightly slower but most people won’t notice the extra 20 seconds of wait time although they will probably notice the flavor of their coffee is more complex and complete.
Of course the K-Mini Plus is the more expensive of the three units but by a lot and I think the higher quality of brew is worth the extra bit of money you’ll spend on it.
Is The K-Mini Smaller Than The K-Slim?
If size and shape is a big deal for you then you will also find the K-Mini to be a better machine for you because it does take up less space.
The K-Slim and K-Mini are exactly the same width so they will both take up the same lateral width on your countertop but because the K-Slim gives you a multi-cup refillable water reservoir that is placed in the back of the unit the extra depth is noticeable – it will stick out further on your counter which may be problematic if you only have limited counterspace in your kitchen for actual food prep.
The Water Reservoirs Are Very Different Too
Both the K-Slim and the K-Mini Plus have water reservoirs that can be removed from the unit. This makes it possible to wash them out at the sink or in the dishwasher and they can be filled at the sink too.
In contrast the basic K-Mini features a non-removable reservoir meaning you have to bring water to the machine to fill it up (usually this will be your coffee mug) but this also means it’s very hard to clean out the reservoir if any debris gets into it.
Both the K-Mini and the K-Mini Plus have a small mesh filter screen at the bottom of the reservoir which stops large particles of dust, hair, or other debris from entering the machine. The screens need to be cleaned periodically and the basic K-Mini just makes it hard.
You can put anywhere from 6 to 12 ounces of water in the K-Mini’s reservoirs for brewing and cleaning but of course the K-Slim’s best feature is it’s larger reservoir that can hold multiple cups of water at a time. From my experimentation I can get about three 8-ounce cups of coffee brewed from one full reservoir on the K-Slim, about a day’s worth of coffee for me.
The reservoir is small compared to other Keurig reservoir brewers but certainly bigger than the K-Mini or the K-Mini Plus.
How Fast Does The K-Slim Brew Compared To The Mini?
Which Machine Brews The Hottest Coffee?
Which Is Best: The K-Slim, The K-Mini, Or The K-Mini Plus