You may have noticed something confusing in the world of coffee. Two products sound very similar: coffee Filter Packs and coffee Pillow Packs.

You might be wondering:

What’s the difference? Are they the same thing? What should I buy for my house or my business?

We get this question a lot, and we are here to help you in your java journey. In a world filled with packs of K-cups, pods, and single-cup packages, it seems like there’s a different packet for every niche of coffee drinker. With so much variety, it’s hard to know exactly what you need, and more than that: what you want.

Here at Coffee Wholesale USA, we are in the business of providing answers. Consider us your personal coffee guides. Because when it comes to your morning cup(s) of joe, nothing should stand in your way.

Before we go too far:

You should know that both of these products are designed for a regular, everyday coffee maker. Not a single-cup, so-specific-you-can-only-buy-for-this-machine contraption.

These packs are for those of us who get up every morning, put ground coffee beans in a filter, and minutes later we pour the first of many cups from a fresh pot of coffee: the same pots of coffee you find in your favorite diner or used by your favorite airline.

Single-cup contraption users: don’t feel bad. We have a veritable smorgasbord of blends, teas, and hot cocoa for you. We even have this single serve filter pack. It looks like a tea bag, but rest assured, it’s coffee. Feel free to look around.

Here’s the scoop on filter packs:

all day gourmet filter packs

A Filter Pack is essentially coffee grounds and a filter in one. It is sealed with filter material on both sides, so all you have to do is place the whole thing in your coffee maker. The measuring is done for you. It’s the same strength every time. There’s no need to scoop or spill coffee grounds on the counter, causing the break room/hotel room/kitchen to be covered by a constant coating of rogue grounds. We all love coffee, but nobody loves that guy.


A Filter Pack is a tidy pouch. Self-contained. Easy to use. Efficient. It’s like the iPad of the coffee world. Sure, there are other options, but why mess with them?

When the coffee is done brewing, you can throw the whole thing away. That’s it. You get to avoid a potential mess when the grounds spill out of the filter, and the smell penetrates through the trash can, and every time you look in there it scares you for a second because the tiny grounds look like ants all over the trash… trust us, the filter pack can save you from fear and smells and all around terror.

You might be wondering:

What’s a Pillow Pack then? Isn’t that a bundled bag of throw pillows from a bargain bin?


Pillow Packs, or Portion Packs are another way to ensure a consistent pot of coffee. A Pillow Pack is essentially a pre-measured package of coffee groundsAll Day Gourmet Pillow Packs

That’s it.

Sometimes you can find these packages in a vacuum-sealed packet, or Vacket. Folgers makes pillow packs in a vacket to keep oxygen out. The vacuum seal helps the coffee stay fresher for a longer amount of time.


These Pillow Packs are for people who are afraid of gigantic drums of loose coffee grounds or getting their hands dirty. They are great for those who don’t have time for things like measuring. These packages keep your coffee consistent, since you’re guaranteed the same amount of grounds in every brew cycle. They’re easy on employees. And they keep that one woman in the office who doesn’t like strong coffee from messing with everyone else’s morning buzz.

On that note:

You should know that you can order both Pillow Packs and Filter Packs with various amounts of coffee grounds in them, to cater to 4-cup, 10-cup, 12-cup, and most other sizes of coffee pots. But who’s to stop you from brewing a bigger Pillow Pack of coffee for a stronger pot? We won’t tell.

What’s the really big difference?

Pillow packs still need a filter. So the difference is in the number of steps it takes to get from an empty to a full pot of coffee. The brewing process when using a Pillow Pack is:

  1. Place filter in coffee maker
  2. Rip open Pillow Pack package
  3. Dump contents onto filter
  4. Press Brew, or Go, or Start, or whatever command you normally give your coffee maker to ensure your authority over it.
  5. Remove filter and contents when the brewing is over

In contrast, the process involving a Filter Pack is more like this:

  1. Place Filter Pack in coffee maker
  2. Press Brew
  3. Trash it.
    (That’s fewer steps)

What’s the bottom line?

You could use the Filter Packs and eliminate loose grounds for the rest of time. But maybe your favorite coffee brand or flavor doesn’t come in Filter Packs? (If that’s the case, let us know, and we’ll see if we can get them.)

Maybe you like the power and engagement that comes with pouring coffee ground in a filter — playing such an essential role in your morning coffee process. After all, those grounds are in that filter because you put them there. Great job!

Any way you spin it:

You can make coffee in a regular coffee maker with either of these products. They don’t require anything special. Unless you consider coffee filters special, in which case you can get your fill of them here.

Pillow Packs need a filter because they’re just pre-measured grounds, and they need your help to become something more. Filter Packs don’t need any help at all. They’ve got you covered, because they’re covered all around.

One final warning: don’t use them together. They’re not friends. They’re more like estranged cousins who went in different directions after college. Sure, both of them have a great personality, but only one can become your ultimate coffee companion.

The choice is yours.

Written by Gloria

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