Hamilton Beach’s 49981A Single-Serve Coffee Maker Review

by Ana Maria | Last Updated: March 22, 2021

Hamilton Beach’s 49981A Single-Serve Coffee Maker is affordable, and apart from that, it has an innovative and cost effective solution for its users who do not want to spend on K-cups. The scoop that comes with the unit is designed to be filled with their choice, loose-coffee grounds.

And as we all know, this translates to zero wastage and less spending. Learn more about the unit in this review.



The Hamilton Beach’s 49981 Single Serve Scoop Coffee Maker is a straightforward unit made from stainless steel material that is capable of giving you a hot, piping cup of coffee within 90 seconds (for 8 ounces).

It has been the choice for many coffee enthusiasts on a budget since it allows using loose coffee grounds as opposed to K-cups or pods. Thus if you are tired of paying for K-cups, you can check this model out for size.

The unit uses of ground coffee, with regular automatic drip grind preferred. Keep in mind that it makes use of ground coffee only, and not pre-packaged coffee single packs. It can churn out regular or old (stronger tasting) coffee in any kind of flavor from caramel down to vanilla coffees.

It can also take coffee from other brands like Dunkin Donuts. Apart from coffee, the unit can also make other types of beverages like hot chocolate, tea, even oatmeal and instant soups.

The device does not allow using coffee or water filters since it already has a stainless steel filter scoop. Thus, you do not have to deal with the mess that comes with separate filters. Brewers can make use of tap water for the device, but if they want better quality coffee, they can supplement it with bottled or filtered water.

K-cups and pods, as mentioned previously, are not needed so it will allow you to save on your coffee fix. Ground coffee is less expensive compared to pods and K-cups, and you can even use beans that you grind yourself for the brewing.

Hamilton Beach’s 49981A model allows brewers to choose between 8-ounce coffee to 14 ounces. It is capable of taking in a 7” tall cup or mug in a low position while 4” ones can be accommodated in the high position.

You can easily brew an 8-ounce cup in under 90 seconds in this unit, and the 14-ounce option can be had in just under 2.5 minutes. However, keep in mind that coffee brewed under the bold setting will take a bit longer to produce.

Users have praised the unit for its user-friendliness and its regular and bold options. For stronger-tasting coffee, you can select the bold option and it will deliver output with a full, robust flavor for premium grounds.

Many satisfied customers also commented that due to the few parts that the device has, it is easier to clean and maintain. More importantly, the unit allows you to cut down on waste, which is a recurring issue for pods and K-cups.


There were some negative comments from users who bought and used this single cup coffee maker, though. According to one user, the unit can sometimes give coffee a plastic taste, and in order to get rid of that taste, you should run the unit with a water and vinegar solution before usage.

Otherwise, the coffee will taste plastic, or not strong and robust. There were also a few who commented that 90 seconds might not be sufficient enough time to gather flavors from the grounds, while some complained about minute coffee grounds left in the bottom of the cup.

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Despite its few setbacks, Hamilton Beach’s 49981A Single-Serve Coffee Maker is a nice buy. It produces good coffee in a fast and efficient way, can drip straight into a travel mug and it has qualities that most people search for in a coffee-making device. The machine delivers greatly in terms of performance. Definitely worth a try.