Choosing the Right Coffee Grinder

coffee beans ready to grind image by DeaPeaJay

coffee beans ready to grind image by DeaPeaJay


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© 2013 Shanna Lea

Exposure to air oxidizes coffee beans and coffee grinds oxidizes faster because they lack the bean’s protective skin covering.  Home coffee grinders allow you to stop the level of exposure and produce the freshest grind from your coffee beans.  The best thing about coffee grinders is the grinding can be done at conveniently at home when you need it.

Choosing the best grinder for your needs makes the messy and long process of grinding much more rewarding.

Types of Coffee Grinders

There are 3 main types of coffee grinders:  crusher, blade, and burr

  • Crusher—using a hand crank mill like a manual non-electric grinder that you crank by hand, grinds the coffee beans with a burr that crushes the beans between a rotating wheel and a non-moving surface.  Produces low quality coffee grinds.
  • Blade—blade grinders ‘chop’.  As the blade whirls, it chops the beans into uneven grounds and degrades the oils.  Uneven variation dissipates and the flavor from the beans.  These grinders are inexpensive, but they also produce inconsistent results, which affect the flavor of the coffee.
  • Burr—burrs that use motorized plates with pyramid shaped teeth allow for the best grind.  Burr grinders yield consistently high quality coffee grounds.  This produces the best brew, because the speed adjustment keeps the beans from being overheated during the grinding.

Tips for Choosing the Burr Coffee Grinder

  • Conical—the grinder the professionals prefer the conical shape.  They can be noisy though, with the good ones going up to 500 rpm.  Top of the line grinders have speeds of 10 thousand rpm.  This grinder is used to produce the fine grinds for Turkish coffee.  Some conical grinders have a dial for speed adjustments while others have buttons to control the speed.
  • Look for solid construction, easy to clean and less noisy coffee grinders.
  • Look for ones that include a brush for cleaning
  • Look for easy to remove upper type burrs (blades).
  • Beware of construction materials that cause static electricity—static electricity lets the grounds stick to the blades and the container.
  • Timer and auto-switchoff
  • Be sure you can see the grinds.  Stay away from dark glass or plastic that hinders your view.  You can judge the grind by its color, but if you can’t see through the container then you can’t decide if the grind is ready.

Watch the video below for more information on how to choose the right coffee grinder.

Coffee 101:  Choosing the Right Coffee Grinder


Do Your Research

Do your research and read all reviews you can about each grinder to find the best match for you before buying.  When you find the right one, you will be pleased with each flavorful cup of coffee you make.

You can find the coffee grinders shown in the video here >>>

Baratza Virtuoso Coffee Grinder

Rancilio Rocky Doserless Coffee Grinder


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