The foundation of a lip-smacking cup of coffee is fresh beans ground directly before brewing.
The only way you can ensure this type of freshness is to invest in the best coffee grinder.
Many people are put off grinding their own beans before they even get started. If you don’t know anything about the process, it’s understandable to imagine it will be a time and labor intensive affair barely worth the effort.
As you’ll find out today, nothing could be further from the truth!
You’ll have 3 main choice of grinder at your disposal:
- Manual grinder
- Electric blade grinder
- Electric burr grinder
Well, once you’ve got the best filtered water as a foundation, the next secret to getting that hallowed golden cup of coffee is to grind your own beans as soon before brewing up as possible. Sure, you can get some tasty pre-ground coffee but you’ll simply never rival grinding your own at home.
We’ll give you a snapshot now of our #1 pick and our upgrade pick so you can see 2 of the best coffee grinders at a glance…
Our #1 Pick: Baratza Encore Conical Burr Grinder - The Burr Coffee Grinder
If you’re new to grinding your own beans and you’re looking for an efficient and durable conical burr grinder offering you a wealth of choices with grind size, the Baratza Encore delivers in fine style. Combining affordability, consistency of grind and durability in one striking package, the Encore is our standout winner in our challenging quest for the best burr coffee grinder.
Upgrade Pick: Breville Smart Grinder Pro
With an eye-popping 60 grind sizes settings, this precision grinder is not cheap but you can act right now and grab yourself a very stiff discount. The Breville excels when it comes to fine grinds for espresso so if you like your coffee short and strong, you’re in for a real treat. The Breville Smart Grinder Pro is an intelligent grinder that will simplify the process without stripping you of any involvement or satisfaction.
I. 13 Best Coffee Grinder Reviews
1) Baratza Encore Conical Burr Grinder – The Best Burr Coffee Grinder
Often touted as one of the best grinders for beginners, the Baratza Encore is not cheap but it’s a one-off investment that will dramatically improve the quality of the coffee in your cup. Although the utilitarian design won’t win any prizes, you’ll get a rugged yet quiet grinder built to stay the distance.
If you often flick from grind size to grind size, one day enjoying a coarser coffee through a French press and the next day hankering for a finely ground espresso, the Encore gives you a staggering 40 different sizes.
Note that if you want a super fine grind, you’ll need to be patient since the grinder takes a while to properly bed in. Don’t give up and you’ll soon have the makings of the most robust espresso without needing to hit the coffee shop.
Repeatable grind settings mean you can enjoy that perfect consistency without fiddling around each time. Grinding doesn’t need to be a tiresome affair.
The motor is gives you all the power you need matched with great efficiency. It won’t overheat either, something that’s very damaging to the beans. You’ll grind at 450RPM which means you won’t get too much noise – something that blights many grinders – and you’ll also reduce the static buildup that can spoil your end drink.
Highly accurate burrs give you a full extraction every time. In plain English, you’ll get the very best from your beans in terms of both taste and aroma. This is where burr grinders beat blade grinders hands down.
You’ll get a generous 8oz of beans in the hopper and you’ll get 5oz of grounds in the collection bin.
Delivering a great deal of flexibility and a smooth, powerful motor capable of grinding at the optimum speed, the Baratza Encore is our standout overall #1 pick for best coffee grinder.
- Huge choice of 40 grind settings so no excuse not to get that perfect golden cup every time
- If you love espresso, the Encore delivers a superbly fine grind
- Motor is potent without overheating in operation and built to last
- Relatively quiet compared to much of the competition
- Winning combination of performance, affordability and user-friendliness
- Not the most attractive grinder
- Takes some time to deliver very fine grinds as your grinder needs to bed in
2) Breville Smart Grinder Pro – The Best Espresso Coffee Grinder
Next up in our reviews is the Smart Grinder Pro from the industry titan Breville.
This grinder is certainly not cheap but it’s currently available at an aggressive discount so if you act quickly, you can pick one up close to half price.
Is it worth the money, though?
In a word, yes. If you’re obsessive about coffee and insist on martialling the brew every step of the way, you’ll be wowed with the level of control the Breville delivers…
60 baseline grind settings would be impressive enough but there’s a microadjustment scale effectively multiplying that number by 10 and leaving you staggered by 600 varieties on grind size. It’s an understatement to suggest that there’s something for everyone.
The superfine grind you’ll get is the reason we chose the Breville as our best coffee grinder for espresso. As you can see from the settings, though, it’s by no means good for espresso only. At the other end of the scale, you can happily produce a coarse grind for your French press along with anything in between these two extremes. Versatility is unimprovable with this grinder.
You should note that the coarsest grind is not ideal for French press so if this is your preferred brewing method, you should reconsider and look at alternative grinders. Although it performs well across the board, the Breville excels at the finer grinds.
The stainless steel conical burrs are solid and ensure you get a smooth and consistent grind every time.
This precision is further boosted by the digital timer that allows you to tweak your grind time in increments of 0.2 seconds. Precision rules with the Smart Grinder Pro.
Dose IQ also helps you to get the grind you want for each brew method at the push of a button. Other hot buttons make navigation a breeze and the Smart Grinder Pro is a strong combination of technology and ease of use.
If you’re looking for a top-tier grinder tailored to espresso and any drink requiring a finer grind size, you simply can’t go wrong with the Breville Smart Grinder Pro.
- Insane number of settings with 60 grind settings and a 10-stage microadjustment scale giving you an outlandish 600 different sizes
- Stainless steel conical burrs for precision and longevity
- Digital timer lends to extreme precision when you’re grinding
- Comes fully to the fore with finer grinds so perfect for espresso
- Intelligent settings but remarkably user-friendly
- High RRP but currently up for grabs at an aggressive discount
- Works on 110/120 volts only so make sure you have the right supply
3) Capresso Infinity Conical Burr Grinder – The Best Budget Coffee Grinder Under $100 + The Best Grinder For French Press and Pour-Over
Next up we’ve got a winner in two categories…
The Capresso Infinity is our best budget coffee grinder coming in at less than $100 while also stealing the prize for the most effective grinder for your French press or any pour-over method.
So if you’re looking for a bargain and you prefer the more hands-on methods of brewing, read on to see where the Capresso stands out…
Slowly, slowly wins the race with grinders and the motor on the Capresso is designed to run without the heat rising or friction damaging the beans.
You’ll be able to work your way through 16 settings if you want to explore the full grind size range. You might run into some intereference if you opt for extremely fine or very coarse grinds.
The Capresso comes into its own somewhere in the middle of the range delivering a sterling medium grind. You’re not going to enjoy the consistency of the Baratza Encore but then you’re not paying as much either.
With any budget grinder, you’ll need to accept some shortcomings and the Capresso is by no means perfect.
If you prefer coarse grinds, watch out for consistency. You can end up with a great grind for your French press one time then find it misses the mark the next time you grind.
There’s also some degree of static buildup with the Capresso and rather too much ground coffee is retained forcing you to smack the unit to dislodge it.
These minor gripes aside, the Capresso Infinity is a smart bet if you’re looking for a budget grinder but you don’t want to be stiffed in terms of quality. Road test one today and you won’t look back.
- Exceptional value for money without compromising build quality or performance
- Impressive capacity holding over 8oz of beans and 4oz of ground coffee
- 16 settings spanning Turkish at the fine end right through to much coarser grinds
- Stainless steel conical burrs for peak performance and high level of accuracy
- Grinds nice and slowly to reduce friction and give you the most consistent grind without overheating
- To describe the grinder as commercial-grade is misleading but it’s a rock-solid home grinder
- Rather too much of the grounds retained
- Some degree of inconsistency with coarser grinds
4) Handground Ceramic Burr Mill Grinder – The Best Manual Burr Coffee Grinder
Not everyone wants an electric grinder. Whether you want a silent grinding solution so you can enjoy your morning coffee without disturbing the rest of the household or you just fancy getting back to basics, the Handground ceramic burr mill grinder stands alone as the best manual burr grinder in a crowded market.
Grinding by hand is obviously a lot more labor-intensive than if you were to use an electric burr grinder. If you’re going down the manual route, why make it harder than ever with a poor grinder? The spawn of one of the most successful Kickstarter campaigns ever, this crowd-funded grinder is super-simple to use…
There’s an aluminum crank on the side which lends to a very user-friendly action. The non-slip grip means you won’t end up with a mess all over the kitchen floor.
With 15 settings, you’ll be covered whether you want a fine grind for your morning espresso or a much coarser batch to throw in the French press.
This, sadly, is where the Handground falls down and appears to be a case of form over function…
While it undeniably looks and feels great, the success of a grinder must rest on the quality of the finished product. With a lack of consistency and a very slim tolerance between grinds, you’ll find that many of the settings yield a woeful mix of small and large particles of coffee. Once you tweak things, you should get a decent grind but consistency is lacking.
While it’s not without its drawbacks, the flaws are shared by pretty much all manual grinders. You’ll never achieve the same level of consistency as you could with the best electric coffee grinder. That said, if you’re determined to go manual, the Handground deserves a place on your shortlist.
- 15 settings allow you to run the full gamut of grind sizes including a Turkish and spice grind
- Impressive build quality with all components precise and built to last
- Like any manual grinder, you’ll get no annoying racket as you grind
- Extremely ergonomic feel so the whole process feels rewarding rather than challenging
- 1-year limited warranty for your peace of mind
- Consistency leaves something to be desired
- Fully half the settings are effectively unusable as the grind is simply too uneven
5) Baratza Virtuoso Coffee Grinder – The Coffee Grinder For Espresso and French Press
Next up in our reviews is our best coffee grinder for both espresso and French press. This makes it perfect for larger families where everyone takes their coffee slightly differently.
The Virtuoso acquits itself well across all grind sizes which is why we nominated it best for not just fine espresso grinds but also for much coarser solutions if you’re using the French press. You’ll get a uniformity simply not achievable with a manual grinder. Whatever your preferred brewing method, the Virtuoso will help you get the foundations just right.
Speed is most certainly not of the essence with grinders. Not high speed anyway. For the best grind, you want to make sure the heat and friction stays down and the DC motor steps up to the plate. Power and efficiency are both notched up meaning you won’t end up with burned beans. You won’t encounter any menacing static either so your brew is in safe hands.
Finished in a satin metal and weighing just 9 pounds, Baratza has managed to cram a great deal of performance into a compact unit. The overall feel is solid, too.
Since you need to invert the hopper completely to empty it out, cleaning is rather a chore. There’s really no excuse for this and it’s worth pointing out though far from a deal-breaker.
If you and your family use multiple brewing methods and you need a versatile and capable grinder to meet these needs, the Baratza Virtuoso is the ideal candidate. From espresso to French press and everything in between, get your coffee started the right way with a durable and minimalist burr grinder.
- Broad choice of 40 grind settings so ideal for espresso, French press and any grind in between
- Runs cool throughout the grind cycle putting paid to scorched, ruined beans
- Revamped gearbox offers more power and less noise
- Timer allowing you to recreate your favorite grinds every time
- Superb brand heritage without an eye-watering price tag
- Not the easiest grinder to clean
- Pretty compact unit so not great if you like brewing larger batches
6) Rancilio Rocky Espresso Grinder
If you’re hunting down the cheapest coffee grinder, scroll down now. This model is not for you.
For anyone looking for a commercial-grade grinder that will give you a fantastic return on investment, read on to see what makes the Rancilio Rocky Espresso one of the strongest grinders on the market.
If you have a coffee shop or any other establishment where you consistently need high volumes of beans grinding, clearly you will not be searching for a cheap, entry-level model.
If you dig a little deeper, you’ll be rewarded with the Rocky Espresso, a hard-hitting grinder marketed heavily at commercial users. Since the burrs are flat, they’ll deal comfortably with large amounts of coffee beans.
That said, the Rancilio makes the ideal addition to any home kitchen as well so if you have deep pockets, the Rocky Espresso doesn’t just look great but delivers a winning grind, too.
Running at 1750RPM, the torquey motor shouldn’t run hot. Heavy insulation and a shut-off switch in the event of overload help out here.
To adjust the grind size, just turn the hopper. This can be slightly tricky so it’s not the best model in this respect. This issue alone explains why the Rocky Espresso failed to win any of our special nominations.
If you have the need for lots of beans all day every day, the Rancilio Rocky Espresso is well worth further investigation. It’s not the best grinder for making frequent small adjustments to the grind size but if you want plenty of any particular grind, the Rancilio will get the job done quickly.
There’s a 1-year limited warranty but you can expect this grinder to last much longer than that properly looked after.
- Rugged industrial-grade burr grinders capable of heavy-duty work
- Direct-drive motor delivers all the power you need without shattering your ear drums
- Tinted hopper looks great and allows you to monitor with ease when it’s time for a refill
- Very easy to operate even for beginners
- Rock solid build quality means the grinder should give you plenty of years of happy service
- Expensive but still represents great value
- Exposed screws on hopper leads to more shards of coffee beans accumulating
7) JavaPresse Manual Coffee Grinder
If you’re looking for a diminutive manual grinder ideal for popping in your suitcase when you hit the road, the JavaPresse might be just what you’ve been looking for.
Adjusting the grind size is what separates an average grinder from a great one. You’ll be able to flick through 18 different sizes so you’re good to go whether you want fine particles for your espresso brew or a much coarser mix for pour-over and French press brewing.
The burrs are ceramic which the manufacturer claims will outperform and outlast steel.
Although you’ll be limited to grinding up smaller batches, if that’s your intended purpose, you could do far worse than the JavaPresse.
- 18 easily adjustable grind sizes from fine through coarse
- Ceramic burrs built to outlast stainless steel by some distance
- Outstanding value for money and currently discounted still further
- Particle size distribution is spot on thanks to dual burr plate design
- Battery-free and perfect for use traveling if you can’t live without your freshly ground beans
- Limited to grinding pretty small batches
- The hand crack is detachable and prone to coming off as you grind
Upgrade Pick For This Style: Porlex Mini Stainless Steel Coffee Grinder
If you have a slightly more generous budget, the Porlex Mini is another highly portable manual grinder that earns our vote and comes in as our upgrade pick for this style of manual coffee grinder.
Standing just 5 inches tall, this tiny little grinder punches above its weight. Just like the JavaPresse, the Porlex is ideally suited for anyone who insists on freshly ground coffee even on vacation.
Using the grinder is a breeze and you’ll be able to serve up anything from the finest of powders to prime your espresso maker or a coarse grind for your trusty French press.
We’re not here to sell you on manual grinders as they are not the optimum solution but if you know what you want and you insist upon a manual, you can’t get much better than the Porlex Mini. It shows that great things really do come in little packages.
- Ceramic conical burrs deliver a consistent grind whether fine powder or coarse particles
- Tiny footprint with supersized performance
- Impeccable minimalist aesthetics
- Slow grind promotes a superior taste so take charge and go manual!
- Incredibly durable despite the scaled-down dimensions
- Not cheap for a manual grinder
- Some users have complained of the handle flying off mid-grind
8) Krups Electric Grinder – The Best Blade Coffee Grinder
As we edge toward the end of our reviews, we’ve got this nifty Krups that takes the crown of the best blade coffee grinder.
Krups has a hard-won reputation for producing highly capable kitchen appliances that don’t cost the earth. This electric blade grinder is no exception.
It’s unfair to compare this to a burr grinder since it’s a case of apples and oranges. Given the inbuilt limitations of any blade grinder, the Krups stands proud.
The first selling point is the price tag. For less than the cost of a round of Starbucks latte, you can seize control of grinding your own beans. In return, though, you get a product that’s anything but budget in terms of looks or performance.
The machine is small and compact but still lets you grind enough beans for 12 coffees so it’s more than fit for most reasonable purposes.
Cleaning presents no real problem and you can remove the upper burr to simplify it further. Since this grinder has a propensity to get clogged up, it’s worth giving it a regular once-over to prevent this from bringing things to a sluggish stop.
While we’ll never claim that blade grinders are the most effective way to smash up your coffee beans, if money’s too tight to mention but you refuse to compromise on your coffee, it’s certainly better than buying your coffee pre-ground.
- Pair of stainless steel blades deliver a clean-ish grind
- Potent motor delivers the power you need on tap
- Unbeatable brand heritage at a pocket-friendly price
- Available with a milk frother bundled if you want to pep up your longer drinks with some delicious foam
- Relatively small footprint so great in compact kitchens and small apartments
- Some issues can develop with power button after a year or so
- Grinder tends to clog so you’ll need to keep on top of cleaning
- Finer grinds could do with some improvement so espresso drinkers should give the Krups a swerve
9) OXO ON Conical Burr Grinder
The OXO ON is a fantastic example of a conical burr grinder with a twist…
If you love coffee but don’t have room for a limitless supply of paraphernalia, appliances that serve double duty are highly prized. The OXO ON comes with an integrated scale so if you’re looking to exercise complete precision over the brewing process, you’re in luck. This is particularly valuable if you’re using the pour-over method where unerring accuracy and consistency rule.
You get 38 settings which is more than double the offering of most mainstream grinders. If you have a busy household and everyone likes their coffee ground differently, this is a fantastic feature.
Thanks to the stainless steel burrs, you’ll get a remarkably even consistency across all grind sizes. With a container substantial enough to house the beans to for 12 coffees, you’re good to go even if you plan to brew up a large carafe.
On the flipside, this grinder is undeniably expensive. That said, you should consider buying a grinder as a one-off investment. Choose well and you’ll get an appliance capable of delivering years of faithful service.
A few disgruntled users have complained of parts breaking down after 12 to 18 months, notably the power switch. Keep your expectations reasonable and handle with care then the OXO ON should keep going.
If you’re looking for a burr grinder offering up the ultimate in precision and consistency from a brand you can rely on, you can’t do much better than the OXO ON. If budget permits, you won’t be disappointed.
- One-touch functionality with crisp LED display is a pleasure to use
- The onboard scale weighs by dosing rather than time for increased precision
- 38 settings leaves you spoiled for choice
- Stainless steel burrs for consistency from fine to coarse
- Container generous enough for 12 large coffees
- Pretty expensive for a grinder so no use if you’re looking for a bargain
- Some questions raised about durability over the long term
10) Kitchenaid Burr Coffee Grinder
Another wonderful burr grinder is up next in the form of the Kitchenaid, a design-driven grinder that doesn’t sacrifice form over function.
While no grinder is perfect, there’s not too much we can say to knock the Kitchenaid aside from its ruthless price tag. The good news is that you can currently save well over 1/3 if you move quickly and capitalize on the discount.
This grinder makes a real conversation piece in the kitchen. It won’t be long before you’re selling your guests on the difference the best coffee grinder can make to the end result in your coffee cup.
The black and transparent unit looks good in traditional or modern kitchens and the nature of the design is such that you won’t need too much room to accommodate it.
We know how coffee gear can easily start to overrun your kitchen once you develop a real taste for different brewing methods and grinding your own beans.
With 15 settings, there’s no brewing method this grinder won’t cater for. Whether you want fine dust for your espresso, a medium grind or a much coarser batch for some French press coffee, simply rotate the dial and you’re away laughing.
The pedestrian 450RPM grind speed means you’ll get no build-up of heat to scorch the beans and no malevolent static to queer the grind either.
If you have an elastic budget and you’re angling for one of the best burr grinders on the market in a compact package, check out this Kitchenaid at your earliest opportunity and start regaining control of your coffee right away.
- Commanding aesthetic to make a statement on any counter top
- Nothing by the way of static cling maximizing your chances of that elusive golden cup of coffee
- 15 settings giving you access to the full gamut of grind sizes and promising consistent extraction regardless of the coarseness
- Slow grind speed of 450RPM to cut back on troublesome overheating and friction that can negatively influence your brew
- Streamlined dimensions let you store the Kitchenaid in a cabinet or on the counter without losing too much real estate
- Reasonably expensive although available at a steep discount right now
11) Cuisinart Supreme Grind
Edging to the finishing tape with our coffee grinder reviews, we’ve got a cost-effective electric burr grinder from the legendary Cuisinart.
Refreshingly inexpensive for a burr grinder, the Supreme is proof positive that you don’t need to spend a fortune to enjoy gourmet coffee at home. With a budget grinder and a French press, you can enjoy a brilliant and absolutely fresh cup of coffee without needing to outlay a fortune.
While the Supreme is priced at the very lower end of the market, performance is commensurate with a more expensive unit.
18 settings give you ample choice whatever your preferred grind size and brewing method. The dial is labelled up and marked from fine to medium and finishing up with coarse so it’s a user-friendly grinder suitable for even complete beginners.
If you’ve got a large family with voracious appetites for coffee, size definitely matters. You can confidently grind up larger batches of beans with the Supreme. The container holds enough coffee for a full 32 cups which is roughly 3 full carafes.
The backlash of this capacity is the grinder itself imposes a relatively large footprint so it’s not the best fit for smaller kitchens. This aside, there’s not much else we can knock the Supreme for.
If you swoop in in short order, you can avail yourself of a worthwhile discount getting an even better deal on an already keenly priced coffee grinder.
For coffee lovers looking for a fantastic burr grinder on a budget, the Cuisinart Supreme is a stealth choice you won’t regret.
- You’re buying into a brand you can trust at a price you’ll love
- 18 settings to choose from catering for all grind sizes and brewing methods
- Chamber holds enough ground coffee for 32 cups making it class-leading in this respect
- Burr grinding makes sure you are able to easily replicate your grind and get a consistent coffee every single time
- Scoop and cleaning brush thrown in which is a bonus at this price point
- While its capacity is commendable, this translates into a bulky unit so make sure you’ve got space in your kitchen
12) Bodum Bistro Burr Grinder
In our penultimate coffee grinder review, we’ve got the Bistro from the heavyweight Bodum.
At list price, the Bodum is not cheap but it must be the season for coffee machine discounts since you can act now and get a discount touching 50%.
You’ll get no fuss with the Bistro. You can opt for a number of bold color schemes so you’ll have snags coordinating your grinder with your kitchen décor. Whether you want a vivid red or a muted copper, you’ve got 6 choices.
Choice extends to the grind size where you can flit between the 14 settings to achieve whatever consistency you’re looking for.
While some grinders offer more scope, it’s arguably a waste of time fussing over tiny gradations. From a stiff espresso to a carafe of French press, you should have no problem matching the grind size to your drink.
Since it’s a conical burr grinder, you’ll get the most consistency possible with the minimum of effort. Stainless steel conical burrs slice through your beans without battering them like blades.
Static cling is a bugbear when you’re grinding and different brands attack this problem in varying ways. Bodum has made the coffee catcher from borosilicate glass to counter this and you’ll resultantly sidestep this pitfall completely.
There’s a quick grind button for your convenience and you can make use of the timer to dial things in and wield complete control over the process. Once you’ve pressed this grinder into commission a few times, operating it can be done almost on autopilot. The Bistro proves that grinding your own beans doesn’t need to be a tiresome or time-consuming procedure.
We won’t pretend the Bistro is cheap at full retail price but if you move promptly, it’s now being sold at a heavy discount. Even at full price, it’s a one-off investment that will return enormous dividends so what are you waiting for?
- Outstanding value as heavily discounted so get brand heritage for a song
- 14 settings spanning the full spread of grind sizes
- Industrial design with a splash of color
- Borosilicate glass means there’s almost no static cling
- Timer lets you grind with total precision
- Not cheap if you need to pay full price
- Features rudimentary so don’t expect a tech-driven grinder
13) Baratza Forte BG Steel Burr Grinder – Commercial Grade Coffee Grinder
To round out our coffee grinder reviews, how about if you need a much beefier grinder cut out for use in a coffee shop or restaurant?
The Baratza Forte is a commercial-grade coffee grinder so if you need to grind up significant volumes of beans day in day out, you need equipment that’s leagues apart from a flimsy budget home grinder. Even though it’s a costly investment, you’ll get fantastic build quality along with a motor and burr grinder capable of dealing with a heavy and ongoing workload in a commercial backdrop.
You should be aware in advance that this grinder doesn’t respond well to finer grind sizes. If you need to fuel up your machines for espresso, this is really not your strongest option. If, on the other hand, you use mainly drip coffee and you are hunting for medium to coarse grinds, the Forte hits the spot.
You’d expect more than 10 size settings from a machine at this price point although the manufacturer makes no secret of the limitations. As long as you’re mainly using the same type of grind between medium and coarse, you should find the Forte delivers what you need.
Consistency is as you would expect from a machine targeted at a commercial market so if you’re looking to take the sting out of grinding beans in your coffee shop and you’ve got the budget to stretch to it, the Baratza Forte is well worth popping on your shortlist.
Just be aware in advance that you won’t fare well with finer grinds to avoid making an expensive mistake.
- Commercially-rated grinder for medium to coarse grinds fit to stay the distance
- Flat steel burrs for speed and precision best for drip and press pot brewing
- All-metal grinding chamber enhances the quality of your grind
- Flexible unit tailor-made for both manual and batch brewing
- Reasonably compact and attractive design despite heavyweight performance
- 10 settings is underwhelming so be aware of this limitation in advance
- Expensive but not when considered as a commercial asset
Now we’ll walk you through how to choose the best coffee grinder
II. How To Select The Best Coffee Grinder
Like most people around the world, you probably begin your day by scooping some grounds into a filter and firing up your machine to brew yourself a steaming cup of coffee.
You might have wondered why some coffee tastes better than others, and much of that is down to the way the coffee bean is processed before it makes it into the coffee maker.
You can buy ground coffee in the store, and many people are perfectly content with that…
But there is a better option.
If you’re sick and tired of coffee that doesn’t taste quite right, coffee that results in an inconsistent brew every time, or you simply want more control over the process, it’s time to start buying whole coffee beans and grinding them yourself.
Purchasing whole coffee beans and grinding them right before you brew the coffee is the optimum way to the perfect cup of coffee. To achieve this, you need a coffee grinder.
There is so much more to this than simply grinding the beans into a powder however it happens. Read on to get the most effective grinder for your specific needs…
1. Burr vs. Blade Grinder
There are 2 main types of coffee grinders on the market, burr grinders and blade grinders.
Though both types are fit for purpose, one is definitely better than the other…
Blade Grinders: They are relatively inexpensive and readily available. Unfortunately, this is where the benefits stop. Blade grinders have a canister with sharp blades in it. When you fill this canister with coffee beans and press the button, the blades spin around and chop the coffee beans roughly into smaller pieces. You might think this is precisely what you need, but nothing could be further from the truth.
When the blades hit your coffee beans and they’re broken up, the resulting grind doesn’t have an even consistency. You wind up with something that’s a mix of extremely fine particles of coffee and larger pieces verging on whole beans. You could perhaps continue to grind, hoping to get the bigger pieces chopped up even further, but this would result in more heat being generated inside the canister which will dull the flavor of your coffee.
Also, when brewed, these inconsistent pieces of coffee bean result in coffee that tastes poor. Because there’s no consistency to the grind, different parts of the ground coffee will brew at different rates, resulting in a coffee that can be weak or bitter, or even just off.
Burr Grinders: Though they are quite a bit more expensive and are not always easy to find, burr grinders result in an infinitely superior cup of coffee.
Inside the canister of a burr grinder, you’ll find 2 metal or ceramic plates that look like they have teeth all over them. One of the burr plates remains in a fixed position while the other burr plate attached to the grinder’s motor rotates.
When your whole coffee beans are inside the burr grinder, rather than being chopped into bits, the burrs crush the coffee beans between them as the coffee grinder operates.
This method of grinding results in a far more even and consistent size of ground coffee which will deliver robust and aromatic coffee with no taint.
2. Grind Size
Because there are so many different ways to brew coffee, there are also many different sizes of coffee grounds needed to accommodate them.
You want a coffee grinder that can grind what you need, but don’t hesitate to look for a grinder with multiple grind sizes. This way, you can switch between a coarse grind for your French press and an ultra-fine grind when it’s time for espresso.
Read More: Best Coffee Grinders For French Press
3. Ease of Cleaning
Another thing to consider is how easy the coffee grinder is to keep clean.
A grinder with several moving parts that need to be disassembled is going to be a bit trickier to clean than composed of very few parts.
Most can be simply wiped clean or brushed out, but some must have pieces removed and washed separately.
If you don’t have the time for this or will often forget to complete the task, be sure to prioritize a grinder that is easy to clean.
4. Extra Features
Coffee grinders with a hopper attached are worth looking out for. A hopper is a small storage compartment that will house a few portions of coffee beans while they wait to be ground.
This will save you a few moments each morning as you won’t need to weigh out each portion of coffee beans before grinding.
While you can get a blade grinder without spending much, that doesn’t mean it’s the best option.
If you’re on a budget, though, having a decent blade grinder is better than nothing. You can generally find good ones for less than a round of drinks at Starbucks.
Burr grinders will be more expensive, but you don’t have to go crazy unless you truly are a coffee connoisseur and have a more fluid budget.
There is something for everyone today, so roll with whatever type works best for you. There’s no right or wrong grinding solution.
III. Coffee Grinding Guide
As you know, there are many different methods of making coffee. Each of these brewing methods demands a different sized grind of coffee in order to get the tastiest end product.
You can’t use the same size grind of coffee for an espresso as you would for a French press and expect lip-smacking coffee. The resulting cup would disappoint.
So it’s all about the grind size.
When you use a finely ground coffee, more coffee is mixed with water at once and you will need less time for your coffee to brew.
If you use a coffee that’s coarsely ground, allow a little longer for brewing as there’s less surface area of coffee for the water to extract the flavor.
Coffee grinds range in size from extra coarse to a Turkish grind. If you’re wondering what that means, we’ve got you covered.
- Extra-Coarse Grind: This coffee resembles chunks of coffee beans with hardly any fine powder in it at all. An extra-coarse grind is a bit like tiny rocks.
- Coarse Grind: This size grind looks like sea salt. It’s made up of pieces of coffee bean that are noticeably different in size.
- Medium Grind: This grind has the texture of sand and is almost consistent in sizing.
- Fine Grind: This size of grind is even more consistent than medium and has the appearance and feel of sugar.
- Extra-Fine Grind: While you’ll still be able to feel some sandiness in an extra-fine grind, it’s really more like more like powdered sugar.
- Turkish Grind: This is the finest grind of all and has the consistency of flour. This is a specialty grind that it can only be effectively used in Turkish coffee pots. It’s not suitable for drip brewing or any other common method.
Depending on what type of coffee grinder you choose, you might also have the ability to get a 7th coffee grind that is somewhere between two of these…
For example, some methods of brewing such as a siphon brewer use a medium-fine grind of coffee. That’s one strong bonus of grinding your own coffee…
You remain in full control over how fine the grind is in the end.
Choosing the Grind
The taste of your coffee all comes down to the grind.
Sure, starting with good coffee beans is important, but even seemingly mediocre beans can taste great if prepared properly.
Because there’s such a variation in methods of brewing coffee as well as the size of grind of the coffee bean, it can be difficult to know where to begin.
We hope that the below information will give you a good starting point and form a cheat sheet for you as you venture out to select your new coffee grinder.
1) How do you grind coffee for use in a French Press?
A French press is a great way of brewing coffee. It’s simple to use, easy to clean, and you won’t feel like you need a fancy degree to get a great cup of coffee.
Because of the way a French press works, you don’t want a grind that is too fine. Even if you have a brand-new filter and think you are good to go, you’ll regret using a fine grind here. If you use a finely ground coffee, you’ll be staring into a cup of coffee full of sediment that made its way through the filter and into your drink.
The grind best suited to a French press is a coarse grind. You need to make sure you allow your coffee to brew for the recommended time to prevent winding up with a weak cup of coffee.
2) How do you grind coffee to use in a pour-over coffee maker?
Pour-over coffee has become increasingly popular in the last several years after expanding beyond Japan, and it’s easy to see why once you’ve tried it.
It’s another simple and seemingly foolproof way to get yourself a great cup of coffee, but as we’ve learned, it’s more about the grind of the bean than it is about the method of brewing.
To successfully brew a cup of coffee using the pour over method, you want to start with a medium or medium-fine ground coffee.
3) How do you grind coffee for espresso?
Espresso is a bit different from other types of coffee. It’s made in an entirely different way, and because of this you have to be very aware of all that’s going on.
The most important thing as always is the size of ground coffee used to make the drink. For espresso you want a very finely ground coffee to achieve the right flavor.
4) How do you grind coffee to use in a cold brew coffee maker?
Cold brew coffee is typically left to brew for 12-24 hours, so it needs a coffee ground that withstands that length of time in the water.
Cold brew achieves its peak taste when it can slowly draw out the flavor and aroma from the coffee beans.
Because of this, you need to use an extra coarse grind of coffee bean. Remember, this is as coarse as it gets without being whole beans, and to make cold brew coffee right, this is what you need.
5) How do you grind coffee for use in a drip coffee machine?
Automatic drip brewers are the most common type of coffee machine on kitchen counters today.
With these simple to use machines, you need a simple grind of coffee to get a consistent cup of Joe.
For the best results, use a fine or medium grind of coffee bean. Somewhere in between works well, too.
6) How do you grind coffee for a percolator?
A percolator works by repeatedly circulating the heated or boiling water through the coffee grounds. Unfortunately, this can often result in your coffee tasting bad.
While there are other steps you can take, starting with the correct size coffee grind can help you to alleviate this problem of over-extraction in the percolator brewing method.
When using a percolator to brew your coffee, you need to go with a coarse grind of coffee. Ensuring that the water has to work to pull out the flavor will go a long way in making sure you get a good cup of java in the end.
IV. Final Words
We very much hope you’ve found these coffee grinder reviews useful and informative.
If you start by lasering in your precise needs and the type of grind size you’ll use most often, you can easily pick a grinder from the 13 we tested that delivers everything you want at a price you can stomach.
Whether you want a cheap but effective manual grinder, an inexpensive blade grinder or a pricey but ruthlessly efficient burr grinder, we’ve tried to cover grinders for everyone.
Now grab some beans, grind up a batch and get the coffee brewing!