What I Look For
- Grinding: How fine does it grind the beans? Is it adjustable? Can it be used for multiple types of coffee
- Capacity: Does it hold enough beans for multiple cups of coffee? Is it easy to refill?
- Durability: Is it made of durable materials? Are the blades made of steel? Is it easy to clean?
What to Consider About Coffee Grinders
- Type of grinder: Coffee grinders come in two types: blade and burr. Blade grinders are like mini blenders that use blades to chop the beans. Burr grinders crush the beans into a uniform size between two abrasive surfaces. Burr grinders offer better consistency and more control over the grind size.
- Grind settings: Depending on the type of coffee you’re brewing and the desired flavor, you’ll need to adjust the grind size. Some grinders offer a wide variety of settings, allowing you to dial in the perfect grind for any type of coffee.
- Capacity: Coffee grinders come in a range of capacities, from those that can handle a single cup to those that can grind enough for an entire pot. If you’re just making coffee for yourself or a small group, pick a grinder with a smaller capacity.
- Ease of cleaning: Coffee grinders are especially prone to getting clogged with coffee grounds and oils. Look for grinders that are easy to take apart and clean, and be sure to check that all the parts are dishwasher-safe.
- Durability: Look for a grinder that’s constructed with sturdy materials and has a good warranty. Also, check to see if the grinder has any features that will help protect it from wear and tear, such as a built-in timer that automatically shuts off the grinder after a certain amount of time.
Types of Coffee Grinders
For coffee grinders, there’s no one-size-fits-all option. Different grinders offer different levels of convenience, grind quality, and size.
Blade grinders are the most basic and least expensive type of grinder. They’re typically small, lightweight, and easy to use, but they produce an uneven grind and can heat quickly, which can affect the flavor of your coffee.
Burr grinders are more expensive than blade grinders, but are more reliable and provide a more consistent grind. They typically feature two revolving discs (burrs) that crush the beans between them. It’s important to note that burr grinders can be manual or electric, and the price can vary significantly depending on the type.
Manual burr grinders are the most affordable, but they require some elbow grease to operate. Electric burr grinders are more expensive but provide a more consistent grind.
Lastly, there are coffee grinders specifically designed for espresso. These grinders are typically more expensive than burr grinders and provide a finer grind size. This finer grind size is necessary to make espresso, as the water must pass through the grinds quickly in order to extract the right flavor.
How to Care For Coffee Grinders
- Clean the Grinder Regularly – Coffee grinders should be cleaned regularly with a soft brush or cloth to keep them in good working order. This will help prevent any buildup of coffee grounds, oils, and other residue.
- Use the Right Grind Size – Use the right grind size for your coffee brewing method. Different grind sizes are best suited for different brewing methods, so use the right one to ensure your coffee tastes its best.
- Don’t Overfill the Grinder – Overfilling a grinder can cause it to jam and may damage the motor. Make sure to only grind the amount of coffee you need for each cup.
- Store Your Grinder Properly – Coffee grinders should be stored in a cool, dry place. Coffee grinders can be susceptible to moisture and should be kept away from any potential sources of moisture.
- Don’t Push the Limits – Coffee grinders should be used within their rated capacity. Overloading them can cause them to overheat and damage the motor. Make sure to only grind the amount of coffee you need for each cup to prevent overworking your grinder.
Tips for Coffee Grinders
- Choose the right grinder for your needs. If you are going to be grinding large amounts of coffee, invest in a burr grinder as this will give you a more consistent grind size.
- Clean your grinder regularly. Coffee grounds can become clogged in the burrs and chute and can affect the performance of your grinder.
- Keep your burrs sharp. Over time, burrs can become dull and this will affect the quality of your grind.
- Store your grinder in a cool, dry place. This will help to keep your grinder from rusting or becoming clogged with old coffee grounds.
- Regularly check for wear and tear. This can be anything from loose screws to worn burrs. If your grinder is not in working order, it is important to get it serviced or replaced.
Frequently Asked Questions About Coffee Grinders