Best Coffee Grinders in 2023: Buyer’s Guide, Reviews, and ComparisonsYou could have the most expensive coffee machine on the market but that cup of coffee won’t reach its full potential if you’re not grinding your own beans. It only makes sense that for the best tasting coffee, you need one of the best home coffee grinders because it’s all about grinding just before you brew. Selecting the perfect bean grinder can be difficult though. Blade grinders, burr grinders, manual grinders — understanding it all practically requires a manual! Coffee grinders have different types of burrs or blades, some have multiple settings, and some are just better than others. Deciding which options matter most will help you pick the perfect one.
- Has an integrated burr calibration system
- Safety features ensure the motor won’t overheat
- Grind levels are simple to adjust
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Table Of Contents
- How Much Coffee Do You Drink?
- How Many Settings Do You Need?
- Manual or Electric?
- Time Involved
- Feedback and Manufacturer Reputation
Best Coffee Grinders in 2021: A Buying Guide
You’ve ventured far enough into the java world that you understand the importance of using freshly ground beans, rather than pre-ground coffee. Now you need one of the best coffee bean grinders to perfect your brew. Sure, you can continue to grind coffee beans at the grocery store, but some precious flavors are already lost by the time you get home and reach your coffee maker.
Grinding your own beans at home just before brewing takes your coffee to the next level. Freshly ground coffee beans will always result in a beverage that tastes richer and full-bodied.
Coffee bean grinders come in all price ranges with a variety of options. Some are quite simple and efficient, while other models have numerous bells and whistles. There are even manual coffee grinders that are almost small enough to tuck into your pocket.
When you’re deciding which appliance to purchase, these are some things to consider:
Type of coffee grinder — burr, blade, or manual
How much java you drink
What you’re willing to spend
How many grind levels you want
Do you want a manual grinder or an electric one?
How much time you want to spend grinding beans
The brand’s reputation
Coffee Grinder Types
Not sure if you need burr, blade, or manual? Here’s what you need to know about each option.
Burr coffee grinders have long been considered the preferred standard for grinding coffee beans and are the best coffee grinders overall. These workhorses do an excellent job with most grind levels and operate by crushing the beans with either conical or flat burrs. These burrs are crafted from stainless steel or ceramic depending on the model. Electric burr grinders can also handle larger amounts of beans, making them ideal if you drink more than a few cups of java.
Revolving burrs crush coffee beans
Has multiple settings for grind levels
The best-rated coffee grinders according to baristas
Blade coffee grinders are much smaller than their burr counterparts and are typically much less expensive. Rather than burrs, these devices rely on stainless steel blades to slice through coffee beans. Blade grinders may be good choices for people just starting to grind their own coffee as they’re simple to use.
However, the heat generated by the motor is so much that it can affect the resulting coffee’s taste. It’s also difficult to evenly grind the beans with a blade grinder, even when it’s one of the top coffee grinders in its class.
Small, electric appliance
Stainless steel blade rotates quickly to slice beans
Usually have one setting only
While burr and blade coffee grinders may be great at the home or office, they’re not exactly portable. Manual coffee grinders are intended for use with a small number of beans, so they’re ideal for someone who travels, hikes, or camps since no electricity is needed.
These devices are small and come in many different price points. Some models can even rival the quality of burr grinders in terms of coffee grinder ratings, but they do require some arm strength.
No electricity required
May have stainless steel or ceramic burrs
Quieter than electric models
Using Coffee Grinders Safely
You might be asking yourself if it’s really necessary to have a section on safety in the middle of coffee bean grinder reviews. But the reality is that these are mechanical devices, and by their very nature, can result in injury if not used properly. Coffee grinders are designed to either crush or slice through beans, so make sure they’re only grinding coffee beans and not your fingers!
Many appliances, including most of the best coffee grinders for home, include safety features, such as the ones below.
- Non-slip rubber feet to prevent the appliance from shifting position unexpectedly.
- A safety-lock mechanism, so an electric grinder won’t start grinding unless its lid is locked into position.
- Overload protection that prevents the motor from overheating. When it reaches a certain temperature, the device will simply shut off. It won’t be able to be restarted until it cools.
- Cord storage, which keeps the cord from getting tangled in anything.
You should use caution when cleaning your coffee grinder as you may encounter sharp edges. This is especially true when disassembling the device and putting it back together. Always follow the instructions in your manual!
Considerations When Choosing a Grinder
We often get asked “what is the best coffee grinder?” and the long and short of it is that it’s really up to your needs. Before you purchase a unit, make sure it’s suitable. For example, if you go camping every other weekend, you’re probably going to want a manual grinder that doesn’t require electricity.
If your kitchen is tiny, look at models with small footprints, so it won’t take up much space. If you like to make coffee at 5am and the rest of the family likes to sleep in, you need a quieter model.
Here are some other considerations that will help you decide:
How Much Coffee Do You Drink?
Do you just have one mug and then you’re out the door? Or do you need multiple cups of caffeine to get through the day? Maybe you share your stash with your family. How much coffee you drink determines how many beans you grind.
Electric burr coffee grinders are typically the largest models. Some have hoppers that can hold almost a pound of coffee beans — that makes for a lot of java! If you have a full house, a burr grinder may be the best coffee grinder for the money.
On the other hand, blade grinders and manual grinders have the smallest capacity. Some are so small they only grind enough for a single cup of joe, while others can grind enough for multiple mugs. If you do need more coffee ground, it’s a quick process to repeat with a blade grinder, though.
Just keep in mind, your arms will be doing the work with any manual grinder, so your arms may not want to keep grinding more so you can have refills.
Unless you’re blessed with unlimited funds, you’ve got a set budget for your new coffee grinder. If you’re really lucky, you’ll happen upon a coffee grinder sale. The good news is that there are devices available for every budget, but it’s important to know which ones may be more affordable.
Blade coffee grinders are usually the least expensive, which makes them a great starting point if you’re just learning how to grind your own coffee beans. However, you do get what you pay for, and blade grinders just don’t do the job as well as other types, at least not without a lot of trial and error. The best cheap coffee grinders start at around $20.
Manual coffee grinders come in a wide range of prices. The best manual grinders are more expensive than most blade versions but may cost less than burr models.
Since most manual grinders have more grind levels than blade grinders and often do a better job, this makes sense. Manual coffee grinders can range from $30 to almost $200.
There’s no getting around it, electric burr coffee grinders can get really expensive really quickly. These appliances are typically better quality than blade grinders, have more options, and can grind more beans. The price for a burr coffee grinder starts at around $100.
How Many Settings Do You Need?
If you only drink one particular style of coffee, having 30 different grind level settings probably won’t matter to you. However, if you like a little of this and a little of that, you may want those different grind levels.
A blade coffee grinder usually only has one setting. It takes some experimenting to figure out how long to grind beans in order until you reach a particular fineness. Most blade grinders can only run continuously for about 30 seconds, so it’s recommended that short bursts of grinding are used to get the desired consistency.
Burr and manual coffee grinders often have many grind levels to choose from. Most manual grinders have at least 10 grind levels, while an electric burr grinder can have 20 to 100 different settings. For someone who likes French press coffee one day and espresso the next, a burr or manual coffee grinder will be the better option.
Manual or Electric?
The vast majority of coffee bean grinders are electric, as that’s what most people prefer. If you’ll be grinding beans in your kitchen or at the office with easy access to an electrical outlet, then an electric grinder will work just fine for you.
However, if you regularly go camping or hiking or travel often, you might want to consider a manual coffee grinder. No electricity is required, plus the small size of some manual grinders makes them extremely portable and travel-friendly. Just tuck it into a suitcase or your backpack.
Any manual grinder does require a little arm strength, though, and some models are easier to use than others.
How much time are you willing to spend on grinding coffee beans? A manual coffee grinder will require about 10 to 15 minutes to prepare and grind the beans. More, if you want more coffee since manual grinders typically don’t let you grind much at a time. At most, you’ll be able to grind enough for a few cups of java.
Blade and burr coffee grinders work much faster than manual grinders, as is the case with most things electric. Blade grinders are the fastest, although it takes some experimentation to figure out the right grind time for the appropriate purpose. Burr grinders work a little slower but will produce more consistent, even grinds.
Feedback and Manufacturer Reputation
Don’t forget about the brand’s reputation or what users think when you’re considering your own purchase. There are certain brands mentioned in literally thousands of coffee bean grinder reviews, and these brands often have well-established reputations. Companies that have been around for decades couldn’t have managed without solid products.
Some things to look at with customer feedback include what buyers think about particular models and their experience with the company or customer service. Hopefully, you’ll never need to contact customer service but if that happens, you want it to be a pleasant experience. Coffee grinder reviews can provide useful information about a company’s after-sales support.
If you’ve been wondering “where can I buy a coffee grinder?” most brands have information on their websites about where to buy their products, both online and in brick-and-mortar stores.
A delicious cup of java starts with grinding coffee beans. Ground coffee beans are always superior to pre-ground coffee and freshly ground beans always trump beans ground at the grocery and then brought home.
There are so many options for grinding your own beans at home, so there’s no one perfect answer for which appliance will meet your needs. Burr grinders and manual grinders generally produce the best results, but blade coffee grinders can definitely get the job done quickly and easily.
Consider what features matter most before deciding on a particular model. Whether it’s manual or electric, how many grind levels it offers, how much you’ll be able to grind, and your budget are all important considerations. After you’ve examined the options, choose your grinder and visit a store where you can buy coffee grinders or pick your fave model up online!
Best Coffee Grinders FAQs
Are Burr Grinders Really Better?
Almost always, yes. Burr grinders crush coffee beans, which results in more evenly sized grinds. Blade grinders slice beans and, because they operate at such a high speed, those slices may not be even. Evenly sized grinds are best for bringing out coffee’s true flavor.
Are Coffee Grinders Worth It?
Absolutely! Freshly ground coffee beans will make your beverage taste so much better than even beans ground at the store. Once beans have been ground, they start to lose their flavor and aroma almost instantly, so much flavor escapes before you can even brew.
Should I Buy Coffee Beans or Ground?
When you have the choice, choose the beans! As with the previous question, as soon as coffee beans are ground, they immediately start to lose flavor. Pre-ground coffee has had a lot of time for flavors to dissipate, so your java won’t taste as good as it would with freshly ground beans.
Do I Need an Expensive Coffee Grinder?
No, there are some very good devices available that are affordable, whether you’re looking for a burr, manual, or blade grinder.
Is a Manual Coffee Grinder Better than Electric?
There are some manual coffee grinders that produce ground coffee that’s comparable to that delivered by many electric models, so it comes down to personal preference here, and perhaps arm strength!
Where Can I Buy Coffee Grinders?
You should be able to find a good selection of coffee grinders at almost any store that sells coffee makers. Shopping online is another great option.