How to Choose the Best Home Coffee Grinder


Hey everybody, welcome to this episode of
In the Kitchen, bringing great coffee home to you, I am the Kitchen Barista. First, a little housekeeping. I want to talk
about the new name of the show; we have renamed it from Kitchen Barista TV to In the Kitchen.
We think that more reflects what we’re doing on the show on a regular basis – you coming
into our kitchen. So I hope you enjoy many more episodes of In the Kitchen. Today, as you can see, we’re talking about
grinders. Specifically, which grinder is the best one for you to buy for your house? There
are a couple of criteria you should be looking at when you’re making a buying decision about
grinder for your house. What I want to do first is give you an overview, a brief overview,
of the type of grinders that are typically found in houses. I’m not going to go into
full detail on each grinder; we’ll do that in further episodes. I will actually do a
deep dive into how these grinders are used, how they work, how to clean them and so forth.
But, today I am just going to give a brief overview. I am also not going to touch base
on the full size burr grinders that you see in your coffeehouses, because, unless you
are a roaster or really into coffee, you are not going to put one of those in your houses. So, I am going to start over here with the
one that is probably the most popular that you see in an average kitchen of somebody
that grinds. It is an electric, or blade, grinder. It is a blade grinder because that
it is exactly what it does. There is a blade in there that, as it spins, it grinds the
bean. This one right here is a burr grinder. It
has a couple more features than a blade grinder which you just push it down and it goes and
you have to watch your stopwatch, or something, and timing as to how coarse or how fine you
want the beans as you go there. This is the burr grinder; it has a couple more settings.
I like the burr grinder because it is almost like Ronco, you know those rotisserie chicken
commercials…set it and forget it. That is kind of what this is; you put your beans in
here, adjust the dial, turn it to the number of cups, press start and let it go. They shoot
out into the chute and you put your coffee into the coffee maker. That is pretty much
set it and forget it. This is one here is a manual grinder, hand
grinder, or coffee mill is what you may see them advertised as. And this, unlike these
two, which is electric, is manual, pure and simple. Coffee grinding at its most basic.
Just turn the crank. That is a hand grinder. So, which one of these babies is the best
one for you to buy for your kitchen. Well, as with any purchasing decision that you make
about an appliance, and you should really look at coffee grinders as another kitchen
appliance because, in my opinion, that is really what they are. When I buy a kitchen
appliance there are two main criteria that I look at, price and usage. First, we will talk about price. If price
is your biggest concern or factor when buying anything, today we are talking about grinders.
In talking about grinders, you want to go with this. You want to go with an electric
blade grinder. You can get these for fifteen to twenty bucks on average. They will do,
not the best job, but they do a decent job for grinding your beans, especially if you
are making the transition from buying ground coffee to buying whole beans. Buying beans
and using an electric grinder is more preferable than buying ground coffee, you will get a
better fresh cup. So, if you are not really not sure what you want to do, not sure if
you really want to do the grinding or not, for fifteen to twenty bucks get a blade grinder,
you won’t regret it. This here is a burr grinder. This particular
grinder costs me about fifty dollars and it has done a really good job, I am happy with
it. As you do reading out there, a hundred dollars, above and below, is a good gauge
as to whether you are going to get a better quality burr grinder or not. The ones over
a hundred dollars, typically the difference you will see versus the ones that are under
a hundred dollars is the quality of the parts inside. Whether you have metal parts inside,
whether the chute and the hopper are glass versus plastic. The more expensive ones you
will have glass in there, like this, like I said is only fifty bucks, so this is plastic
and this is plastic. On the more expensive ones, these parts will be glass. And inside
you will more metal parts as versus plastic parts inside the actual burr part of it. Whether
it is flat burr grinder or canonical burr grinder, conical burr grinder, there will
be more metal parts. That is the biggest difference. Cleaning, as you get more expensive burr grinders
they also make them easier to clean where parts can pull right out and clean versus
this one, it is not the easiest to clean but it is doable. And this, hand grinder, you can get these
anywhere from, this one was twenty five dollars, up to two to three hundred dollars depending
on how big you want to get it and the quality of the parts, the metal, in here. The second factor I look at in buying an appliance
and that you should look at when you are deciding about a coffee grinder is usage. How are you
going to use the grinder as well as how often do you brew coffee at home. So you want to
look at those two different things. If you don’t brew coffee a lot at home, you
are one of these that likes to go out and stop on your way to work or like to just hang
out in the coffeehouse because you like the setting and that’s where you get most of your
coffee and you maybe just on the weekends brew your own coffee at home, a burr (yeah,
a burr) a blade grinder should be fine for you. You just want to make sure that you’re
pressing the button down not too long for the type of grind you are doing. If you are
using an automatic grind, automatic drip, which is typical, you probably want fifteen
to twenty seconds which is want you to be pressing that down for. If you press that
any further you run the risk of, uh, of burning your beans because it generates heat in there.
Um, also, a blade grinder will be adequate if, uh, automatic drip is what you basically,
what you brew, stumbling over my words here. If you are mostly brewing automatic drip,
a blade grinder should be adequate as well, because all you really have to know is to,
like I said before, just press the button and make sure you are not over grinding your
beans. If you brew coffee at your house on a daily
basis and/or you make more than just drip coffee – you have a French press you use every
once in awhile, you have an espresso machine that you like to have an espresso or you know,
you like to do a red eye which is a combination. It is espresso on the bottom and drip coffee
on the top. If you want to do any of those combinations, this is what you want to get.
No doubt, hands down, you want to get a burr grinder, um, because it’s got a number of
different settings on them. You can go from fine, which is for an espresso, all the way
to coarse, which is what you want for a French press, and a medium in between. Within each
of those settings, there are different ones, you can hear it cranking, each little sound
of that is a setting. It starts from a very tiny circle, fine, to a larger circle, coarse
if that is what you want. As well as the cup sizes. So if you are doing, if you do it regularly
as well as multiple types of brewing methods, this is hands down, like I said, this is what
you want. The hand grinder. I would get a hand grinder
if, similar to what I said about a blade grinder, if you brew your coffee on the weekends, you
don’t want to spend a lot of money on your grinder, then maybe this is just it. That
is all you do. That is what I would get the hand grinder for. Or, what I would get a hand
grinder for is if you entertain a lot and have guests over and make some coffee. It’s
very nice conversation piece when you pull this out and put the beans in the top and
start to grind, um, it, trust me, it is quite the conversation piece when people will look
at you like “what is that, what are you doing?” and you are grinding the beans and you are
actually hand grinding the coffee beans for them. It also sends a statement to your guests
that, hey, I care about you, I am going to hand grind your beans. So, that is what I
would do here. This is more of a novelty more than anything on this, a hand grinder. Now,
some purists will only use hand grinders because of its, uh, there is no electric parts so
it is all based on them so they feel like they can control it better by looking in the
burrs there, the grinders. So that is why you would want this. Those are the grinders, if you have any questions
as you are looking to purchase a grinder for your home, please feel free to email me, submit
a comment on the website. I definitely want to hear about it and I want to help you make
that right decision. So, now is the part of the show where we move
into coffee facts. Coffee fact for today is: next to oil, coffee is the second most exported
product in the whole world. Which shouldn’t really be surprising because if you think
about all the coffee drinkers out there in the world, it’s uh, wouldn’t be that surprising,
it’s not to me. Interesting coffee fact there. So, that wraps up this edition of In the Kitchen,
until next time I am the kitchen barista.

35 thoughts on “How to Choose the Best Home Coffee Grinder

  • Personally, I prefer a burr grinder because I get a consistant grind. A blade grinder is too unpredictable….how many beans are in there + how long to grind it = I dunno! A burr grinder….set the stones at the desired clearance and you get the same grind each and every time. For my money, the burr grinder is the way to go so that you get the same result every time! 😉

  • Blade grinders are not grinders, just like mock turtle soup is not made with turtle. What one wants in any cooking is repeatability, hard to do with the blade machine.

  • Nice video, educational and entertaining. Especially like your view on using the hand grinder. Thanks.

  • Lauren, that depends on how many cups I will be brewing. If I am in a hurry and looking for just one cup then I will use the electric grinder and make sure I time my grind depending on the coarseness I am looking for (no longer than 30 seconds however). If I am looking to have some ground coffee for a couple of cups I will be consuming within a few hours then I will use the burr grinder.

  • I don't do coffee much at home but want a French Press. Would the basic electric grinder be ok and if so, how long do you grind the beans for?

  • I am looking for a grinder for hard spices, like shredded licorice root or shredded beet pulp. I am afraid those are harder than coffee beans 'coz my blade coffee grinder (electric) doesn't quite do the job. I seem to like the idea of the hand grinder but Í'm not sure. Any advice?

  • You are so SO wrong, and you are doing the coffee drinking community a disservice by reccomending a blade 'grinder'!!! They are the LAST thing you should put your beans into. They are AWFUL and should NEVER be used for coffee. You say if your choice is cost limited then a blade grinder is the way to go – WRONG again. If you are funds limited, then the manual, hand grinder is not only the cheapest, by a LONG way, but gives really good ground coffee. From a 'KitchenBARISTA' this is a disgraceful video and should be removed from YouTube.

  • Hi, Thanks for your reply, and I apologise if I came on a little strong – I HATE blade coffee bean 'smashers', and beleive they should never be reccomended for grinding coffee. Although I do understand your comment abought getting people away from buying ground coffee – yuk. Hand grinders give an amazingly good grind followed by good coffee, but are a PitA to use. I use a Mazzer Mini and although a little large (and expensive) for home use, will give a lifetime of use. I believe a good grinder is key to getting a good cup of espresso. Best wishes, and Merry Christmas to you and your family.

  • Getting a grinder is not always a good idea. If you consume your preground coffee in two to three days from purchase you are better off getting the coffee ground for you. In other words the grind quality is a crucial factor for brewing really good coffee and if you buy coffee new coffee every couple days then the benefit from having a poor grinder at home is negated by getting a higher quality grind at a shop.

  • I am wanting to buy a grinder to grind my espresso beans on the weekend. However, I still want a quality cup of espresso especially if I am smoking a cigar on the porch at home. I am going to buy a stove top espresso pot. So, is a manual grinder going to give me a quality grind?

  • i bought about seven different coffe grinders and i can confidently tell you that (two top grinders that really are worth the money and do the required coffee one is the Spanish electric grinder "K-6 silenzio" the other one is the Turkish manual brass grinder for very fine coffe it's been around for at least 200 years they're known for a type of coffee called "Turkish coffe" it's very tasty it just need a fresh fine grinding (you just boil coffe and sugar in a jug till it boils and then put in the cup and drink it) i am sharing it with you coz i think expresso that we drink it's too strong for everyday use it can damage your stomach

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