Let’s be honest, who enjoys lining up for a coffee everyday? If you’re someone who enjoys brewing their own espresso and feel you can do better than your barista: start by grinding your own beans.
Your journey from coffee novice to french press connoisseur begins with freshly ground java in your drip, or espresso machine. Sit back with your favorite style of coffee while we outline what makes a good coffee grinder and then on to our picks.
- Our Top 5 Coffee Grinder Reviews
Our Top 5 Coffee Grinder Reviews
|Product||Comments||Price Guide||Our Rating||Our Review|
|Baratza Virtuoso||Want the best home grinder on the market? Look no further...||Premium||(5 / 5)||Click here|
|Breville||Perfect grind for espresso drinkers at a bargain price||Premium||(4.5 / 5)||Click here|
|Baratza Encore||Top rated entry level burr grinder. A great grind without a huge budget||Mid||(4.5 / 5)||Click here|
|Capresso Infinity||Best 'Bang for Buck' Espresso Grinder||Mid||(4.3 / 5)||Click here|
|Krups F203||Our top rated budget electric grinder. Under $20 it's a bargain||Low||(4 / 5)||Click here|
Although you extend the shelf life by freezing the ground beans this causes other problems effecting the taste of the brew. The next most important factor in the taste in your cup is in the grinding process.
Grinders are distinguished by a few factors, consistency, range of granularity, low-temperature operation and noise levels which they operate.
Your baseline grinder generates higher temperatures and coarser, irregular grinds — and sounds like a jumbo jet at full roar. A fine grind is essential to pulling an espresso shot that has the characteristic flavor and extracts the distinguishing essential oils that set apart good arabica from the foul coffee that your grandma serves. Consistency during the grinding process is also critical for replicating quality coffee, shot to shot.
Avoid spinning blades at all cost when picking a grinder. They chop your beans — you want a conical burr grinder that crushes and pulverizes the coffee to the required fineness.
French press style require coarser, the finest moondust for Turkish coffee, with espresso a few settings under the fineness.
Just like your coffee the exact cost and specs which you decide to spend are up to you — but here are a few great machines to start your research. Good luck and enjoy!
Baratza Virtuoso Review – Best Grinder for the Money
Motor and gear settings make the Virtuoso produce less noise than the cheaper Encore.
Easy to clean. Remove the bean hopper and top burr for access.
- Motor and Gear combo make it quieter than the Encore model
- 60-second timer makes it easy to setup your ideal grind time
- Thermal cut-off switch prevents motor burn out
- Small ground bean container unsuitable for large quantities.
While the deadman switch, which forces users to continuously press the “grind” button, might be annoying for drip brewers, the professional-grade conical burrs and powerful 480W DC motor rotate at a relatively slow 450 RPM, which means the beans remain cool, and tasty.
For our readers who love a nice cup pressed coffee in the morning, make sure to read our french press guide section below. We’ve recommended the Virtuoso as the leading french press grinder currently available.
Breville BCG820BSSXL The Smart Grinder
This product is a top value burr grinder for buyers who drink quality drip coffee and espresso at home. Espresso drinkers who use a bottomless filter basket or pressurized filter basket will love the 820XL.
Overall the 820XL provides a consistent grind across most of its 60 different settings. I could dial-in the Breville to my preferred brew in 5 minutes.
My only criticism is the grinder struggles on the coarser settings. I’d recommend French Press or Moka Pot drinkers look at buying the Baratza Virtuoso.
Breville grinders are famous for being noisy. Fortunately, their 820XL unit is an improvement over the earlier Smart Grinder BCG800XL
The BCG820BSSXL Smart Grinder Pro requires regular cleaning by removing the bean hopper and upper grind burr. The chamber collects any residual beans and ground bean.
Breville included a brush in the standard package for easy clean up. The exterior is stainless steel and high-quality plastic which easily wipes with a damp cloth. Underneath the bean hopper a few grounds usually collects, which can be cleaned easily with the small brush.
International buyers located across Asia, Australian and NZ require the 220-volt version (110-volt unit is only for USA and Japan)
- Easy to clean
- Timer is inaccurate
As our readers already now, we rate the Breville Espresso machine range very highly. It won’t come as a surprise that Breville also produce high-quality grinders.
Their BCG820BSSXL smart grinder not only produces a delicious grind consistently but is available at a great price.
Capresso 560 Grinder Review – Great ‘Bang for Buck’
Great affordable, all-around grinder for drip coffees, pour overs, and French Press.
Slower than the Baratza’s, the motor heats quickly on the fastest settings spoiling the beans.
Exceptionally quiet, if you want an almost silent grinder you’ll love the Capresso.
Burrs can be easily removed, making it one of the easiest units to clean in our roundup.
- Will grind fine enough to choke any espresso machine, without modification
- Good quality burrs
- Produces relatively consistent results
- Slow speed a big plus – no damage to beans and little static
- Easy to clean
- The timer is a silly add-on. On/off button would work better
- If grinds build up, grind gets coarser, and you pollute your grounds with old stale coffee
- The bean hopper is fragile and is prone to breaking
Capresso’s Infinity 560 automatic burr grinder is even more affordable than others in its class. Usually priced under $100, the 560 includes a conical steel burr grinder at the top with a storage container for your beans waiting to be ground.
There’s a handy grind catch at the bottom for the ground coffee to use later.
The Capresso is capable of producing a range of grinds from super-fine Espresso or Turkish coffee all the way up to the more coarse grinds. Upper compartments are easy to disassemble for cleaning, and the grinder has even been designed with pulse grinding functionality if that’s what you prefer.
Best of all a slow grind is available, so your beans don’t overheat, and spoil the taste of your brew. The Infinity engineers have designed 16 individual grind settings, three separate colors, black, brushed silver, and stainless which will suit any kitchen decor.
If you’re looking for a mid-range grinder, the 560 Infinity is a good unit to buy.
Baratza Encore Review
1 gram per second
Noisiest of the Baratza models (but also the cheapest)
Easy to clean, just remove the bean hopper and top burr for access.
- Easy to set grind
- Includes a pulse button for on-demand espresso grinding
- Helpful accessories available online. E.g., portafilter holder
- Consistent particle size
- Grinding can be slow on finer grind settings (approx 1g/s on pouring oversize)
- Quite noisy, but name me a burr grinder that isn’t
- The instruction manual included is very light in detail. However, the online version is very helpful and can be found here: baratza.com
I’ve tested the Baratza Encore grinder extensively at home, and it’s one of the best entry level burr grinders that I’ve ever used. It’s simple to use, does a great job grinding coffee for just about every brewing method and is backed by the experts some at Baratza.
The Encore has been designed and built with the quality Baratza is famous for producing. It’s efficient motor keeps your beans cool during the grinding process, even when extended grind times are required.
A combination of electric and gear speed reducers slows the burr to 450 RPM, ensuring a smooth bean feed and reducing noise, heat, and static buildup.
Competitively priced in the mid range, look no further for the perfect coffee grinder.
Hario Coffee Mill Slim Grinder Review – Best Manual Grinder for Espresso
No frills but the Hario gets the job done. It’s cheap and it’s portable. However, it’s not going to meet the demands of espresso lovers or high volume coffee lovers. While it has adjustable conical ceramic burrs and is dishwasher safe, the settings are not marked.
It’s as slow or fast as your ability to manually turn the crank. Seeing the grinder is manual its great for taking away on vacation or picnic. You’ll get ground coffee suitable for a French Press or drip, anywhere. You’ll also get sore arms, just keep that in mind.
Krups F203 – Best Budget Grinder for Espresso
One of the best selling budget grinder’s in 2016. Not only can the Krup’s F203 grind your coffee beans, you can pop your favorite spices in before cooking fresh paprika or basil. Not bad for it’s really cheap price!