What Is in Coffee Machine Cleaning Tablets – Ultimate Guide

What Is in Coffee Machine Cleaning Tablets

Coffee machine cleaning tablets are a convenient and effective way to keep your coffee machine clean and in good working order. They typically contain a combination of acids, surfactants, and other cleaning agents that dissolve coffee residue, oils, and mineral deposits.

Coffee lovers often rely on their trusty coffee machines to brew their daily cup of joe. However, many of us may overlook a critical aspect of coffee machine maintenance – cleaning.

It is important to clean your coffee machine regularly to prevent the buildup of these substances, which can clog the machine, impart a bitter taste to your coffee, and even shorten the lifespan of the appliance. These tablets make it easy to clean your machine quickly and thoroughly, without the need for harsh chemicals or abrasive scrubbing.

In this article, we’ll learn about these cleaning tablets, exploring what they are, why they are crucial for your coffee machine’s longevity, how they work, and much more.

What are coffee machine cleaning tablets?

Coffee machine cleaning tablets, as the name suggests, are specially formulated tablets designed to clean the internal components of your coffee machine. They are made with a combination of cleaning agents and ingredients that effectively remove coffee residues, mineral deposits, and oils that can accumulate over time.

Why is it important to clean your coffee machine?

Cleaning your coffee machine is not merely about maintaining its appearance. It’s about ensuring the quality and safety of your coffee. Over time, coffee oils, mineral deposits, and residue from previous brews can build up inside your machine.

These residues can alter the taste of your coffee, making it bitter or off-flavor. Moreover, the warm and moist environment inside the machine can become a breeding ground for bacteria and molds, posing health risks.

How do coffee machine cleaning tablets work?

Cleaning tablets work by utilizing a combination of active ingredients that break down and dissolve the stubborn residues that accumulate in your machine. The cleaning process typically involves the following steps:

  • They contain acids, such as citric acid and sulfamic acid, which work to dissolve mineral deposits and coffee residues.
  • Some cleaning tablets also include sanitizing agents to eliminate bacteria and molds that may have formed inside the machine.
  • After the cleaning cycle, most machines require a thorough rinse to remove any remaining cleaning solution. This ensures that there are no lingering residues in your machine.

Common ingredients in coffee machine cleaning tablets

To understand how cleaning tablets work, it’s essential to know the common ingredients found in these tablets.

1. Citric acid

Citric acid is a mild organic acid known for its ability to dissolve mineral deposits and scale. It is gentle on your coffee machine but highly effective in removing limescale, which can clog the internal components. It is also non-toxic and biodegradable, making it a safe and environmentally friendly choice for coffee machine cleaning.

2. Sulfamic acid

Sulfamic acid is another type of acid that is commonly used in coffee machine cleaning tablets. It is more powerful than citric acid, but it is also more acidic. It is important to follow the directions on the product label carefully when using coffee machine cleaning tablets that contain sulfamic acid.

3. Sodium percarbonate

Sodium percarbonate is an oxygen-based bleach that helps remove stains and disinfect the machine’s components. This oxygen helps to loosen and remove coffee residue and oils from the inside of your coffee machine.

4. Surfactants

Surfactants are cleaning agents that help to break down and remove grease and dirt. They are also found in many other household cleaning products, such as dish soap and laundry detergent.

How to choose the right coffee machine cleaning tablets for your machine

When choosing coffee machine cleaning tablets, it is important to select a product that is specifically designed for the type of coffee machine you have. Some coffee machines, such as espresso machines, require specially formulated cleaning tablets to avoid damaging the machine’s internal components.

Moreover, Coffee machine cleaning tablets can be used with various types of coffee machines, including drip coffee makers, espresso machines, and Keurigs. Furthermore, for those concerned about the environment, there are eco-friendly cleaning tablet options available that minimize their environmental impact.

Tablet NameMachines Compatible WithCommon Ingredients
CleanBrew Essential ValuesJura, Miele, Bosch, Tassimo Espresso Machines.Citric Acid, Sodium Bisulfate, Sodium Carbonate, Sodium Gluconate, Sodium Acetate, Polyethylene Glycol.
Urnex Cafiza Espresso Machine Cleaning TabletsProfessional Espresso Machine Cleaner Barista Use.Citric Acid, Sulfamic Acid
Miele 10178330All Coffee and espresso Machines.Sodium Percarbonate, Surfactants
IMPRESA [20 Pack] Breville, Jura, Miele, Bosch, Tassimo, Nespresso, Verismo, and virtually all other espresso & coffee makers.Citric Acid, Sodium Percarbonate, Surfactants
Jura 66281 DecalcifyingWorks with all Jura Automatic Coffee Machines.Biodegradable Ingredients
Miele Descaling TabletsVarious Coffee MachinesCleaning Agent
CleanHike Espresso Machine Cleaning TabletsBreville, Jura, Miele, and Universal Coffee Machine for All Brands Sodium Carbonate, TAED, Sodium C14-16, EDTA Disodium Salt, Sodium Silicate Anhydrous, Sodium Percarbonate, Potassium Peroxymonsoulate, Polythene Glycol (PEG 6000)
Cino Cleano Espresso Machine Cleaning TabletsBreville Espresso MachinesCitric Acid, Sodium Percarbonate, Surfactants
Breville Espresso Cleaning Tablets, BEC250All Breville Espresso machines.All pharmaceutical and food-grade ingredients
Caffenu Descaling TabletsNespresso, Delonghi, Lavazza, Breville, Keurig and all coffee makers.Premium eco-friendly Ingredients.
Jura-compatible cleaning TabletsJura Capresso, E6, E8, S8, D6, C60 Impressa Models, Ena & More.Eco Friendly

It is also important to read the product label carefully to ensure that the cleaning tablets you choose are compatible with any other cleaning products you use on your coffee machine.

How to use coffee machine cleaning tablets

To use coffee machine cleaning tablets, simply follow the instructions on the product label. Most cleaning tablets require you to dissolve them in a water reservoir and then run a cleaning cycle on your coffee machine.

Once the cleaning cycle is complete, be sure to rinse the coffee machine thoroughly with fresh water to remove any residual cleaning solution. Here are the simple yet effective steps to follow;

  • Read the Instructions of your coffee machine’s manual and the cleaning tablet’s label for guidance.
  • Ensure the water reservoir is empty, and there are no coffee grounds in the machine.
  • Place the recommended number of cleaning tablets in the machine’s designated compartment or dissolve them in water.
  • Follow your machine’s instructions to initiate a cleaning cycle. This typically involves passing water through the machine with the cleaning tablet solution.
  • After the cleaning cycle, rinse the machine with clean water to remove any residual cleaning solution.

Here are some guides about descaling various machines you can follow these for more details;


Regular coffee machine cleaning is essential for maintaining the taste and quality of your coffee, as well as the lifespan of your appliance. Coffee machine cleaning tablets are a convenient and effective way to clean your coffee machine quickly and thoroughly.

Regular cleaning prevents the buildup of coffee residues and limescale, ensuring that your brews taste as good as they should. By choosing the right cleaning tablets and following proper cleaning procedures, you’ll continue to enjoy the perfect cup of coffee from your beloved machine for years to come.

What are descaling tablets made of?

Descaling tablets mainly contain ingredients such as citric acid, sulfamic acid, sodium carbonate, and surfactants. Some descaling tablets may also contain other cleaning agents, such as acetic acid, phosphoric acid, or glycolic, formic or lactic acid. These components work together to dissolve and remove mineral deposits, limescale, and coffee residues from coffee machines, ensuring they remain clean and functional.

What is the difference between cleaning tablets and descaler?

Cleaning tablets are designed to remove coffee residue, oils, and deposits from the internal components of your coffee machine. They typically contain acids, surfactants, and other cleaning agents.
Descaling tablets are designed to remove mineral deposits, such as limescale, from the internal components of your coffee machine. They typically contain acids, such as citric acid or sulfamic acid.

Is baking soda a descaler?

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, can be used as a mild descaler for some household appliances, but it is not as effective as dedicated descaling products. Baking soda can help to dissolve minor mineral deposits and limescale in appliances like kettles or coffee makers when combined with water and used in a descaling process. However, for heavy scaling or in more specialized appliances, dedicated descaling solutions or tablets with stronger acids may be more effective.
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