2 Reasons Why Your Nespresso Has No Crema

You have just brewed your first cup of Nespresso with your new Nespresso machine, but it doesn’t look like you expected. It doesn’t look as creamy, but what can be wrong?

Nespresso does not produce real crema because it relies on pressurized water to push its ground coffee into your cup rather than steam pressure like traditional espresso machines. Traditional machines heat the water into steam and then push it through the compacted ground coffee with enough force to create crema.

Nespresso machines put out less pressure compared to espresso machines. It can make you feel like there isn’t enough coffee in your drink, but if you look at the amount of pressure used, it is very little compared to a traditional machine.

Does Nespresso Make Real Crema?

The crema on the top of your precious Nespresso cup is something that you would not want to lose on. But does Nespresso make real crema?

THE SIMPLE ANSWER IS NO. There are some technical reasons why it cannot be done, but I will get into these in a bit.

First, if you are wondering what espresso is, know this, espresso by definition is coffee brewed under pressure! As the pressure increases, the water heats up more and more until it reaches boiling point.

The steam goes through the ground coffee beans and creates a thick liquid called “crema.”

If you have never had an espresso drink before, do try one. Espresso has less caffeine than other coffee drinks because less of it makes its way into the beverage.

The secret behind Nespresso is that it forces hot water under pressure through a chamber already filled with ground coffee beans.

This means that you don’t even get to see the phenomenon of espresso, crema, or otherwise! This makes it impossible for Nespresso to make real crema no matter how hard they try.

Why Does Nespresso Look Creamy?

Now in case you didn’t know, I’m going to break it down for you.

When coffee is brewed, it’s meant to drink right before the water evaporates and the flavor dissipates. This is where Nespresso comes into play; when their capsules are pierced, they pressurize with gas that preserves the crema of the extracted espresso by sending a nitrogen bubble through into hot water, thus creating a foam-like cream on top of your cup.

This isn’t always favorable when drinking by itself, but people consider it better when mixing with milk.

For instance, if you’re drinking an espresso shot by itself, your taste buds would only be able to pick up the single layer of flavor.

Still, when using milk, this creates a whole new combination on the tongue, allowing the creamy elements of the milk to mix with the flavorful oils of coffee.

Why Is My Crema Thin?

First of all, crema is the name given to micro-bubbles of coffee oils that rise to the surface of espresso drinks once they’re made.

These bubbles are created by CO2 that is released during the coffee extraction process. There are several elements involved in creating enough CO2 for good crema.

First, water pressure needs to be high enough (8-9 bars), and water temperature must be optimal (90-95 degrees Celsius). Next, the ground coffee needs to be fresh and tamped firmly into your machine’s filter holder with 30 pounds of pressure.

You also need proper measurements of coffee and water; too much or too little of either will decrease the amount of CO2 available for crema production.

Finally, it takes time for all of these factors to come together, so patience is key if you’re looking for your morning cup of joe to have visible bubbles on top.


  • If you are using pre-ground coffee, which isn’t ideal for espresso machines, fresh beans should always be used when possible.
  • There also could’ve been too little pressure or temperature, both of which inhibit proper CO2 production for optimal results.
  • Perhaps you are new to making espresso drinks and weren’t tamping the ground coffee firmly enough into the filter holder.
  • These issues and not waiting for the perfect brewing environment to come together would lead to less crema and a mediocre cup of coffee.

One interesting side note is that the darker you roast your coffee, the less crema it will have. However, when dark-roasted coffee is ground finer, more desirable compounds are available for extraction, so your morning shot may look creamier than usual.

I hate to say it, but if your Nespresso machine produces sub-par drinks without visible bubbles on top, it might be time for a new one. If you’re going to invest in an expensive espresso machine, you should expect consistent results that taste great too!

How Do You Get Thick Crema?

There is an easy way to get Nespresso machine’s perfect coffee with thick, creamy crema.


  • Take out the capsule from the pod holder and keep it aside.
  • Preheat your cup by pouring some hot water into it and letting it drain off back into the cup.
  • Pour half a glass of cold water (room temperature) into the drip tray.
  • Dry all surfaces thoroughly. For example, water should not be dripping off while you make coffee.
  • Put in one Nespresso Capsule (Compatible only with Original Line, too) in Pod Holder, make sure that the top of the capsule is aligned with the rim of the pod holder. Close the handle firmly until you hear a click sound (Ensure that the capsule stands properly in place).
  • Pour the cold water (75 ml) into your cup. Close the top gently with your palm and turn the machine on by pressing one of the buttons (Coffee or Lungo) depending on whether you want a coffee or lungo.

Nespresso doesn’t always make perfect crema, especially if it’s very hot outside; this trick will create thick creamy froth at the top of your glass!

Nespresso is never bitter like most coffees because it is almost impossible to over-extract. This means that you can experiment more with grind size and tamping pressure without making things too bitter for most people’s taste.

Is Nespresso Supposed To Be Foamy?

NESPRESSO’S SHOULDN’T BE FOAMY AT ALL. There can be several causes for excessive foam in your Nespresso machine, but the most common one is using too finely ground coffee beans or failing to descale. Another possibility could be that your appliance needs maintenance.

Nespresso recommends that you clean out residue from inside your device regularly to ensure it doesn’t affect the taste and performance of your Nespresso machine.

For example, a build-up of calcium can affect pressure and cause excess foam, reducing the quality of flavor in each cup.

Can You Make Nespresso Coffee Without Foam?


  • Be sure the water tank is full and insert a capsule. Close the machine and wait for espresso to brew.
  • Turn off your machine by pressing the POWER button three times consecutively (after your coffee has finished brewing).
  • Wait for 10 seconds. Turn your machine back on by pressing the POWER button three times consecutively.
  • Press the LIFT button (the one with two arrows pointing up), and at the same time, keep it pressed until you hear a second ‘click.’ Your Nespresso is now making less foam but still produces crema!

NOTE: Do not use more than one capsule when using this method.

Which Nespresso Pods Have The Most Crema?

Nespresso has an extensive range of approved pods that can be used in their machines. This means there are quite a few different flavors and types of coffee to try out with your Nespresso machine.

Some varieties have more crema on the top, though this doesn’t affect the taste at all! GENERALLY SPEAKING, DARKER ROASTS WILL HAVE MORE CREMA THAN LIGHTER ONES, so some varieties may naturally fall into this category.

Why Does Crema Matter?

We’ve all tried a shot without crema before, and it doesn’t taste very good! Of course, that doesn’t mean that you need crema for every single shot, but it does mean that if you’re looking for the best taste possible, then having an amount of crema is important.

If you have tried Nespresso capsules with no crema, the most obvious difference will be color; your espresso looks very dark without cream on top.

You’ll notice a lack of flavor intensity and richness too! A shot with no cream has, as customers have described, “no depth,” is “weak” and has a very unpleasant finish.

Why Do Capsules Lose Gas?

Capsules are made up of three parts: The plastic cup (either aluminum or biodegradable), the coffee grounds inside, and nitrogen gas, which gets trapped inside to give your drink its crema.

When Nespresso capsules are made, the coffee grounds and nitrogen gas come into contact with each other inside of a high-pressure chamber (like when you’re filling up your car at the petrol station).

Under normal conditions, the nitrogen cannot mix with or penetrate through the coffee grains, ensuring that it remains trapped in the capsule.

However, repeated opening and closing of capsules (i.e., putting them in machines) can allow air to get inside, making it possible for the nitrogen to escape, reducing your crema production significantly over time!

So How Do You Increase Your Gas?

It’s pretty straightforward: You need to let more oxygen get inside your Nespresso capsules, so you have to open them up.


  • You can use a straw or similar object to poke a tiny hole in the top of each capsule allowing air to enter much easier! This is effective, but it does mean that you have to do all your capsules at once, rather than just opening one now and then.
  • The second method is probably far more convenient if you drink espresso often. You can buy oxygen absorber sachets that sit inside your Nespresso Capsule holder instead of coffee grounds. They work by removing any air from the chamber before filling it with nitrogen again, so there’s no space for oxygen to sneak in during transportation!

What Do I Need?

  • 1 x Sachet of oxygen absorber sachets (20g).
  • 1 x Nespresso Capsule Holder.

How Do I Use It?

The first thing you need to do is remove the coffee grounds from inside your capsule holder. After that, you should place one sachet into each chamber and then replace the lid. Then close up your machine as usual!

Pro tip: Remove the powder directly outside if it spills on the floor, be sure to wipe this up or vacuum afterward, so no one slips over!

Does It Work?

Yes, the oxygen absorber is an effective way of getting more crema from each Nespresso Capsule! But you need to make sure that you replace the sachet every time, too.

This means that if you use one pack a month, then buy three packs. This will ensure that your nitrogen always has something there to absorb any oxygen.

We recommend using these sachets monthly if you’re drinking espresso regularly, but only once every few months if not.

However, there is one drawback with these sachets, which is they can affect the coffee color. If you have ever seen a cup of black coffee turn brown after spending too much time in contact with air, then this is a similar effect.

If you leave your capsules stored in the holder for a long time, then they might turn brown due to oxygen being absorbed into them!

This isn’t harmful or even noticeable if you drink the coffee as soon as it is made, but some people prefer light-medium brown instead of dark black.

Does Nespresso Original Make Crema?

THE QUICK ANSWER IS NO, these capsules are not designed to produce crema, but they don’t have to because they’re meant to be used in an espresso maker instead of a manual handheld espresso device.

You’ll still get the great taste and high-quality products you expect from Nespresso by using one of their coffee makers or brewers alongside their capsules.

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