There’s no shame in living the K-Cup coffee lifestyle, especially when you’re just getting up in the morning. But when you’ve got more time on your hands, brewing your own coffee with beans you ground up yourself with one of the best coffee grinders is an unstoppable upgrade to get your caffeine kick.
But why go to all the effort, you ask? Well like just about every plant-based food, coffee beans retain flavor and freshness longer in their whole, unground form. The upshot is if you have coffee beans and one of the best coffee grinders, you can save the grinding to the last minute, yielding a fresher, more flavorful brew.
Furthermore, as the market for coffee exploded over the last 30 years, you can buy more varieties and kinds of coffee in their whole bean form, which means you’ll have a lot more tasty coffee options out there to try.
That’s why we wanted to dig into some of the best coffee grinders to help you make your coffee more than just the caffeine injection we all use it for and turn it into, you know, a beverage you actually enjoy drinking.
But first, let’s jump into some coffee grinder basics.
TYPES OF COFFEE GRINDERS
- Burr grinders: Burr grinders, also known as mill grinders, use abrasive surfaces, the burrs, to crush and break down the coffee into grounds. They tend to be adjustable so you can control the fineness and coarseness of the grounds. For this added control, burr grinders tend to be more expensive.
- Conical burr grinders: Conical burr grinders use sharp ridges in the shape of a cone to break coffee beans down into large and small chunks no matter how fine the blend. They work well but the grounds are a bit less uniform.
- Flat/disc burr grinders: Flat burr grinders do the same thing as conical burr grinders, but the burrs are much flatter, which helps produce a uniform and consistent grind. They tend to be the best coffee grinders as well as the most expensive. Most businesses selling coffee will have commercial-grade flat burr grinders behind the bar. Given the outlying expense, we haven’t included any flat/disc burr grinders in this round-up. (If you’d like to see a cool flat burr grinder, check out the Ode Brew Grinder. It’s awesome.)
- Blade grinders: Blade coffee grinders are basically the food processors of coffee grinders. Instead of burrs, they use a spinning blade to chop the coffee beans down to size. Because of the simplicity of the design, these grinders tend to be the cheapest, but they also tend to produce more uneven and inconsistent grounds.
- Electric grinders: Electric coffee grinders are the most efficient, but they also usually add more heat to the grinding process that can worsen the grounds a bit. Manual coffee grinders will work well enough for most people if they don’t mind the extra effort.
- Storage: Be sure to store the grounds in an airtight container or don’t grind until you’re ready to brew because grounds start to lose a lot of flavor after just 24 hours.
Now that you know a bit more about what to look for, check out the best coffee grinders below. In case you don’t have a traditional drip coffee maker at home, we also included two filters that you might need to work with whatever you do have, whether it’s a Keurig machine or just a hot water heater.
We promise if you get on this coffee grinder train, you’re never getting off.
1. OXO Brew Conical Burr Coffee Grinder
BEST CONICAL BURR GRINDER
We’re big fans of OXO for all of its excellent kitchenware and the OXO Brew Conical Burr Coffee Grinder is one the brand’s best items.
It’s got a decent-sized hopper that holds .75 pounds of beans and promises 15 different grind settings, with micro settings in between, so you can grind beans to your liking or experiment with different levels of fineness and coarseness.
To start it up, you just set the timer and push the button and voila, the machine will grind up your beans and deposit them into the container below.
Overall, the OXO grinder isn’t too big, is easy to use and works really well no matter what kind of grind you’re looking for. The only downside is that this grinder is a little pricey for a consumer-grade grinder, but that’s because it’s more than top of the line for most of us, coffee drinkers. If you’re willing to spend a bit more, we’re confident this is one of the best coffee grinders for your money.
2. Sboly Conical Burr Coffee Grinder
ALSO CONSIDER CONICAL GRINDER
If you don’t want to spend too much money on a conical burr coffee grinder, you might consider the Sboly Conical Burr Coffee Grinder.
First, it’s a bit more than half as expensive as the OXO grinder, but it offers just as much utility, if not the same level of precision and consistency.
It features 19 different grind settings so you can grind for espresso, a French press or drip coffee, no problem. In a nice design choice, rather than set an amount of time to grind, you choose the number of cups for which you need grounds, up to 12 cups, and the machine will grind until you’ve got enough grounds. That’s a lot simpler than having to guess how long it’ll take the machine to get you enough grounds for one cup, let alone two or more.
An indicator light flicks to blue when it’s ready to go, so set it, forget it and come back when the blue light is on.
Overall, the Sboly grinder offers great value for a conical burr grinder and even if the grounds are not always consistent, we’re certain they’ll still more than get the job done for most people.
3. Mueller Austria HyperGrind Electric Coffee Grinder
BEST BLADE GRINDER
The beauty of a great blade grinder is the quality at the price. It’s a pretty simple machine, so there isn’t that much a manufacturer can do to improve it. For that reason, most blade grinders tend to be more or less the same and, importantly, they only cost so much money.
The Mueller Austria HyperGrind Electric Coffee Grinder is one such blade grinder. It uses long-lasting stainless steel blades to deliver a pretty solid consistency, and you can make your grounds as fine or coarse as you want them by using the machine for more or less time. Just press and hold the button to start grinding and then just look through the transparent top to see how your grounds are looking.
The grinder is also pretty small and compact so it’ll fit easily on most kitchen counters.
And that’s just about everything you need to know about this grinder: It works great, it’s cheap and you’ll have no trouble fitting it in your kitchen to use for coffee beans or whatever kitchen spice stirs your fancy that day. We definitely think the Mueller Austria electric grinder is one of the best coffee grinders, as far as blade grinders go.
4. Triple Tree Manual Coffee Grinder
BEST MANUAL GRINDER
One problem with electric grinders is heat. The amount of heat generated by an electric grinder can affect the quality of the grind. While it’s not usually a problem, or even all that noticeable for most coffee drinkers, it’s easily avoidable if you don’t mind manually grinding the beans yourself. If you’re worried about heat or just want a more hands-on brewing experience, the Triple Tree Manual Coffee Grinder could be up your alley.
It uses a ceramic burr that doesn’t generate additional heat during grinding and features a nice long handle to save you some effort. The grinder itself is also adjustable, so you can set it to grind as finely or coarsely as your heart desires.
Once you’ve got the grind setting you want, you just crank the top to grind the beans and the grounds fall right into the container below. If you make too much or are grinding for the next morning, you can also just pop the silicone lid on the container to seal in the freshness.
This set comes with two containers, a lid, the actual grinder top, a brush for cleaning and a scooper for, well, scooping. And when you feel like everything needs a good clean — even tools for dry goods need one eventually — just take everything apart and toss them into the dishwasher.
Overall, a manual grinder like Triple Tree’s will work well, produce grounds less affected by heat and add a bit more effort to the process in a good way. So if you’re looking for a solid manual grinder, we think Triple Tree’s is one of the best coffee grinders.
5. Breville Smart Pro Coffee Bean Grinder
It might not be the Ferrari of coffee grinders, but the Breville Smart Pro Coffee Bean Grinder certainly qualifies as the Corvette of coffee grinders. It costs a pretty penny, but it’s got a lot of premium detailing that the serious coffee drinker will appreciate.
First, it uses stainless steel burrs designed to minimize heat and preserve the beans’ essential oils.
For absolutely precise grinds, the grinder offers 60 grind settings and an electronic timer down to 0.2-second increments.
If you want a super fine grind for Turkish coffee and you want it to grind 10 minutes worth of grounds, you’re set. If you want a coarser grind for the French press and want three minutes worth of grounds, you’re also set.
Lastly, the bean hopper holds just a little over a pound of coffee, so you’ll probably be replacing your shampoo before you have to refill this hopper.
We already mentioned the major downside is price, but when the prices start to get this high for a niche appliance, they just don’t have many significant downsides. The only downside we picked up on was the durability of the grinder’s parts. Some users said some of the interior parts wore down after a while, ultimately stopping the grinder from functioning.
But four out of five users seemed to love the machine and we don’t think it’s a defect issue. Overall, durability issues or not, as long as the Breville grinder works, it’s one of the best coffee grinders out there.
6. Cafellissimo Paperless Pour-Over Coffee Dripper
BEST POUR-OVER FILTER
You’ve got your coffee grinder, so now you’re totally ready to grind and brew your own coffee at home, right? Wrong! Grinding is only half the battle. Assuming you don’t have a drip coffee maker or paper coffee filters on hand, you’re going to need a reusable pour-over coffee dripper, like the Cafellissimo Paperless Pour-Over Coffee Dripper.
This stainless steel cone basically replaces the paper filter you would ordinarily use in a drip coffee maker to actually brew the coffee. Without something like it, you’re going to have some wonderfully ground coffee beans on your hands without the ability to actually brew anything.
We like the Cafellissimo dripper because it’s stainless steel, cheap and has a disc at the bottom so you can easily set it on top of a standard coffee mug.
7. Maxware Reusable Coffee Filters
BEST REUSABLE K-CUP FILTER
While the Cafellissimo dripper should solve most people’s problems going from grounds to brewed coffee, we also wanted to include one of our favorite reusable K-Cups for those living the Keurig lifestyle.
These Maxware Reusable Coffee Filters will hold on to your grounds and fit into most Keurig machines, so you can grind the coffee you want and continue to use the coffee maker you have.