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If you are a coffee lover, then you know that the key to the perfect cup of coffee is using fresh beans and a quality coffee grinder. Manual coffee grinders are becoming increasingly popular because they produce a consistent grind size that is ideal for making espresso and other specialty coffees.
In this blog post, we will look at some of the best manual coffee grinders on the market. We will also share our top picks for the best budget-friendly models and the best high-end models. So, whether you are just starting out in the world of manual coffee grinding or looking to upgrade your current grinder, read on for our recommendations!
Our Top Picks
What is Manual Coffee Grinder?
A manual coffee grinder is a device used to grind coffee beans by hand. They are often small, portable, and simple to use. Manual coffee grinders come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and can be made from a variety of materials, including plastic, metal, or wood.
Most manual coffee grinders have two grinding mechanisms: a conical burr grinder and a blade grinder. The conical burr grinder crushes the coffee beans between two spinning cones, while the blade grinder uses a sharp blade to chop the beans.
Manual coffee grinders are popular because they offer more control over the coarseness of the grind than electric coffee grinders. They are also cheaper to buy and operate and can be used without electricity.
Many manual coffee grinders include a built-in timer, which allows you to measure the exact amount of time the beans are ground. This is helpful for making consistent batches of coffee.
If you are looking for a simple and inexpensive way to grind your own coffee, a manual coffee grinder is a great option. They are easy to use and produce consistent results, making them a popular choice among coffee enthusiasts.
What are the different types of manual coffee grinders?
There are three main types of manual grinders: conical burr grinders, blade grinders, mortar, and pestle grinders. Each type has its own unique benefits and drawbacks.
- Conical Burr Grinders: Conical burr grinders are the best type of manual grinder, as they produce the most consistent results. They feature two grinding cones that crush the coffee beans between them, resulting in a very even grinding size.
- Blade Grinders: Blade grinders are the most affordable type of manual grinder, and they are also the smallest and most portable. However, they produce less consistent results than conical burr grinders, and can also create heat that damages the coffee beans.
- Mortar and Pestle Grinders: Mortar and pestle grinders are the oldest type of manual grinder, and they are also the slowest. However, they produce the most consistent results of all the manual grinders, and they are very affordable.
Are manual coffee grinders worth it?
There is no denying that automatic coffee grinders are efficient and make the process of grinding coffee a lot easier. But are manual coffee grinders worth it?
In a word, yes. Here is why:
- Manual coffee grinders give you more control over the grind size. This is important because the grind size affects the taste of your coffee. An automatic grinder will always produce the same grind size, which may not be ideal for your coffee beans. With a manual grinder, you can adjust the grind size to your liking, ensuring that you get the perfect cup of coffee every time.
- Manual coffee grinders are cheaper than automatic grinders. Automatic grinders can be quite expensive, while manual grinders are much more affordable. This makes them a great option for budget-minded coffee drinkers.
- Manual coffee grinders are portable. Automatic grinders are bulky and take up a lot of space, whereas manual grinders are small and easy to transport. This makes them a great option for coffee lovers who like to take their coffee on the go.
Overall, manual coffee grinders are a great option for coffee drinkers who want more control over their grind size and want to save money. They are also portable, making them perfect for coffee lovers who like to take their coffee with them on the go.
Things To Consider When Choosing The Best Manual Coffee Grinder
When it comes to choosing the best manual coffee grinder, there are a few things you need to consider. The main considerations are:
- Grinder type – There are two types of manual coffee grinders – burr and blade. Burr grinders are more consistent in their grind size, while blade grinders can produce a wider range of sizes but are not as consistent.
- Grinder size – If you only plan to grind enough coffee for one or two cups at a time, you do not need a large grinder. However, if you want to grind enough coffee for a whole pot, you will need a grinder with a larger capacity.
- Ease of use – Some grinders are easier to use than others. Look for one with a straightforward design that is easy to operate.
- Price – Manual coffee grinders range in price from around $10 to $200 or more. Choose the one that fits your budget and needs.
Once you have considered these factors, you can choose the best manual coffee grinder for your needs.
10 Best Manual Coffee Grinder
There are many different coffee grinders on the market, but not all of them are created equal. If you’re looking for the best manual coffee grinder, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve compiled a list of the 10 best manual coffee grinders available, so you can find the perfect one for your needs.
1. Best Overall: Hario Skerton Plus Ceramic Coffee Mill
This manual coffee grinder has a sturdy build and is simple to operate. It is shaped like an hourglass, with a mill on top and a glass jar to collect the grounds at the bottom. The hopper can hold up to 50 grams of coffee beans, while the jar can accommodate 100 grams of coffee grounds. Despite its large capacity, the grinder is relatively compact, measuring approximately 6.8 inches wide by 9 inches tall. The base can also be used to store coffee grounds by attaching the lid to the jar.
The non-slip rubber base of this mill aids in keeping the mill in place while turning the crank. In addition, it has a ceramic conical burr. This is preferable to a blade grinder because it does not generate heat that can damage the essential oils in your coffee. It is simple to disassemble the entire unit, allowing you to clean the grinder’s hard-to-reach areas. It should be washed occasionally with a mild detergent or in the dishwasher.
- Easy to Detach Stainless Steel Handle
- Improved Grind Adjustment for Consistency
- Stronger Grind Shaft
- Fully Washable
- Glass Bowl Hopper 100g Capacity
- Value for money
- Large capacity
- Easy to fill
- Burr grinder
- Screw occasionally loosens while grinding
- Coarser grinds can be inconsistent
2. Best Versatile: Akirakoki Manual Coffee Bean Grinder
Akirakoki Manual Coffee Bean Grinder Wooden Mill with Cast Iron Burr, Large Capacity Hand Crank, Portable Travel Camping Adjustable (Brown wood)
This hand grinder’s solid wood body and iron accents are impressive. There are white wood, black wood, and brown wood options. The burr is constructed from premium cast iron, a material that does not generate heat, odor, or rust. The overall dimensions are 2.8 x 7.8 inches, the capacity of the hopper is 35 grams, and the capacity of the bottom container is 55 grams. It excels at producing fine and coarse grinds for brewing various types of coffee.
The ergonomically designed crank that provides sufficient leverage for a smooth, quiet, and effortless grind is one of the best features. Reviewers laud the nearly calming and quiet crank. Compared to steel grinders, this model is more challenging to clean in terms of maintenance. After each use, you should ideally keep it dry, use a small brush to sweep inside the machine and around the burr, and then shake out any leftover coffee grounds.
- Large Capacity Hand Crank
- Portable Travel Camping Adjustable
- High Quality Wood
- Cast iron conical burrs
- Adjustable Grinding
- Easy Cleaning Storage
- Easy And Quiet Grind
- Value for money
- Sturdy and stylish design
- Grinds more than coffee beans
- Fairly long grind time
- Small hopper opening
3. Best Value: VEVOK CHEF Manual Coffee Grinder
VEVOK CHEF Manual Coffee Grinder Mini Hand Coffee Grinder 6 Adjustable Setting Stainless Steel Conical Burr Mill Portable Hand Crank Coffee Bean Grinder Fine for Espresso Gift
The value of this hand grinder is unparalleled. It is sold relatively low, yet it provides an unrivaled uniform grind. The burr is made of stainless steel and has six precise adjustments for various grind sizes. The glass container can hold up to 48 grams of coffee beans, while the hopper can hold 20 grams. This grinder can produce both fine and coarse grinds, a quality that is uncommon even among electric grinders.
Use a dry brush to clean the burr and beans’ storage area. For more thorough cleaning, rinse the hopper with water. However, it must be dried immediately afterward.
- 5.7 inch long hand crank
- 6 adjustable setting stainless steel
- Conical Stainless Steel Heavy Duty Burr Grinder
- Portable Coffee Grinder,mini And Easy-carry For Travel
- Grind sizes are labeled
- Grinds quickly
- Fewer grind sizes than other models
- Unclear cleaning instructions
4. Best for Espresso: Zassenhaus Santiago Manual Coffee Mill
The retro design of the Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Mill appeals to a particular aesthetic. This coffee grinder is shaped more like a box than a cylinder, and the front features a small drawer that opens to access the coffee grounds. The crank and hopper are located at the top of the grinder, and the top lid slides open to accommodate the addition of coffee beans.
This grinder is constructed from European beechwood and is offered in either a black or natural finish. Due to its unique form and larger size, it is less portable than other hand grinders. The maximum capacity of the bean container is 30 grams.
The great thing about this grinder is that it can produce an excellent grind for Turkish coffee and espresso. Due to its conical burr made of high-quality steel, it has a consistent grind, according to reviews. It must only be washed by hand.
- Manual coffee mill in black stained beech wood
- Features a conical burr grinder made from high grade tool steel; offers least possible heat build-up
- Adjusts from coarse to powder fine grind; instructions included
- To use: slide back lid, pour beans and grind; easy to hold mill
- Grounds collect in front drawer for easy removal
- Unique design
- Long warranty
- Smooth, consistent burrs
- Small capacity
- Can wobble while grinding
5. Best Splurge: Comandante C40 Nitro Blade Grinder
This beautiful German-made tool features sturdy and reliable construction, with a body made of wood veneer available in various finishes—wenge-style, zebra, red Sonja, black, American cherry, burgundy, cobalt, and grün—and a stunning crank-knob made of oak wood.
This hand grinder’s Nitro Blade burr is made of high-alloy, high-nitrogen stainless steel and is one of its best features. It is incredibly sharp and precisely cuts coffee beans, producing a uniform batch of coffee grounds. The grind can be adjusted by 25 to 30 microns per click across a complete range of sizes, from French press to Turkish. This coffee grinder has a 40-gram capacity and measures 8 by 4 inches.
The manufacturer recommends routinely brushing out the interior and burr to maintain smooth operation. The wood ought to be maintained with a natural beeswax polish. This grinder is not dishwasher-safe, as should be noted.
- C40 Nitro blade Commandant
- A Ultra Durable Materials in steel.
- Beautiful design
- Full range of grind sizes
- Excellent grind consistency
- Made of top-quality materials that will last
- Does have some plastic in construction
6. Best Stainless Steel: JavaPresse Manual Coffee Grinder
JavaPresse Manual Coffee Bean Grinder with Adjustable Settings Patented Conical Burr Grinder for Coffee Beans Ceramic Burr Coffee Grinder for Aeropress Drip Coffee Espresso French Press
The JavaPresse Manual Coffee Grinder is suitable for various kitchens due to its affordable price and sleek stainless steel construction. Although it’s not the largest manual grinder on the market, the approximately 40-gram capacity is sufficient for most brewing devices, even in households with multiple coffee drinkers. However, if you want to grind beans for a full pot of drip coffee, you’ll need to put in some effort, as it’s described as being on the slow side.
The grinder’s ceramic burrs are extremely quiet, making it an ideal option for parents who prepare coffee while their children are still asleep. Additionally, the grinder clicks when adjusted, allowing you to monitor the coarseness setting. A few clicks will keep the coffee grind fine, while more clicks will coarsen it. Additionally, it is simple to disassemble the item for cleaning or packing.
- Built-in Adjustable Grind Selector
- 18 manual grind settings
- Convenient, Portable
- Easy to Use Convenient hand crank
- Quiet grinding
- Clicks to denote grind size adjustment
- Mixed reviews on coarse grind
- Slower grinding
7. Best for Travel: Porlex Mini Stainless Steel Coffee Grinder
This portable manual coffee grinder is one of the best options available. It has a small capacity of 20 grams, but its dimensions of 5.3 x 4.6 centimeters make it the ideal travel companion.
The primary material of this coffee grinder is stainless steel, and it features a ceramic conical burr. It also has a rubber grip that keeps the grinder in place while being turned. A nut on the top of the grinder can be turned left or right to adjust the grind size. It also has a long steel handle that makes grinding simple and efficient.
To keep this tool in pristine condition, it should be hand-washed every two weeks. It is simple because the unit can be disassembled, allowing you to access those inaccessible areas with a small brush.
- Ceramic conical burrs with wide range can grind from powder to french press
- 20 gram capacity
- 47 mm diameter and stands 130 mm tall
- Made in Osaka, Japan
- Stainless steel, static free body
- Clicks to denote grind size adjustment
- Holder for crank arm on side
- Little to no static cling
- Small hopper opening
- Not the best value for money
8. Best Design: VSSL Java Coffee Grinder
The VSSL Java Hand Coffee Grinder is distinguished by its sleek black exterior with copper-colored accents, compact size, and numerous ingenious engineering details. The grinding crank transforms into a carabiner that can be attached to a bag or backpack when traveling. Additionally, the grinding dial is clearly labeled, allowing you to adjust the size from fine to coarse easily. According to the reviews, the materials used are durable and of high quality.
However, there are a few drawbacks to consider. The VSSL grinder is more expensive than many other excellent electric grinders, and its 20-gram capacity is relatively small, particularly for those who use larger brewing devices. However, many non-electric brewers, including French presses, pour-overs, and espresso makers, will not be a problem. However, some consumers may find the product more suitable as a travel companion than a primary home grinder. If you don’t mind the small capacity, this fast and consistent grinder is a worthwhile (if pricey) purchase, backed by a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer.
- Aircraft- Grade Aluminum Body
- Stainless Steel Burrs
- Premium Ball Bearings
- Easy To Use And Carry
- Optimal Grind
- Ultra Durable
- Precision Engineering
- Compact and portable
- 50 grind settings
- Quality materials
- Small capacity
9. 1Zpresso K-Max Manual Coffee Grinder
It’s a cliche to say that a luxury item is the “Cadillac” of its category, but this Taiwanese grinder exemplifies this metaphor perfectly. It is larger and more comfortable to use than every other grinder I have tried, but this luxury comes at a premium cost. Even when accounting for the price, nothing matched the 1Zpresso’s ease of use, speed, or precision.
With the stainless-steel burr, I ground 18 grams of coffee for an Aeropress cup in just 24 seconds, 10 seconds faster than the runner-up. The burr produced an exceptionally uniform grind size. Even though it is a larger grinder, capable of grinding beans for four cups of pour-over coffee at once, it was easy to hold and never slipped from my grasp. Long enough to provide excellent leverage, the handle never jammed. The grinding operation ran as smoothly as could be.
The K-grind Max’s adjustment mechanism may be its most distinguishing characteristic: With each click, the dial at the top of the grinder moves 22 microns. It accelerated through the grind settings from coarse to ultra-fine with minimal effort. The only issue with this grinder was that it required multiple attempts to calibrate for Aeropress, as it can grind too finely. I set the dial to approximately 2.5, which produced an even grind fine enough for Turkish coffee. Aeropress required. I put it to about 6.
The grind catch is magnetic rather than screw-on, making it easier to detach. Then, there was the coffee: a delicious cup with a distinct, chocolaty flavor.
The K-Max comes with a friendly, durable case for those who want a grinder for travel, but it will take up a little extra space in your bag. Even though it weighs less than two pounds, the case makes it about the size of a pint can.
Finally, I’d like to mention that several websites ranked the 1Zpresso JX as the best manual coffee grinder. I chose the K-Max over the JX because I believed the external adjustment mechanism, which the JX lacks, was an important enough feature to warrant its selection.
- 90 clicks design on the visible external adjustment dial design
- Swift-Disassembly Design
- Stainless Steel “K Burr”
- Quick-release Magnets Catch Cup
- Premium build quality and detail-oriented design
- Excellent performance for both espresso (authentic espresso shots) and filtered coffee
- Super easy to adjust and replicate grind size with external adjustment dial (90 clicks in 1 rotation)
- Fast grinding speed and smooth grinding experience
- Slightly optimized for filtered coffee with larger grind adjustment each click than the JX-Pro or J-Max
- One of the most expensive 1Zpresso manual grinders
10. TIMEMORE Chestnut C2 Manual Coffee Grinder
The Timemore C2 is the best budget hand grinder, in our opinion. Timemore is a relatively new company in the specialty coffee industry, but they are quickly gaining recognition. And the Timemore C2 is a contributing factor. This stylish grinder offers a premium grind at an affordable price.
The Timemore C2 contains 38mm steel conical burrs. These burrs are sharp and aggressive, allowing them to grind coffee beans quickly. In addition, they offer a rapid grinding speed. Additionally, the burrs produce an excellent grind consistency, especially at medium to coarse settings. Regarding grind settings, the C2 is equipped with a stepped grind adjustment system that provides 36 distinct grind sizes. These settings offer a comprehensive grind range, accommodating everything from Moka pots to French presses. Therefore, this grinder is suitable for manual brewing techniques.
The Timemore C2 has a contemporary design, but its construction is less expensive than that of other grinders on this list. Timemore has chosen to incorporate plastic components into the design to reduce costs. The C2 has a plastic cover, crank handle, an adjustment knob, and plastic internal stabilizers. The burrs and hand crank, however, are made from stainless steel. Overall, the C2 is a great entry-level manual grinder that annihilates its competitors (the Hario Skerton and Porlex mini).
- Sharp Stainless Steel Burr
- Consistent Grinding
- Patented Point To Point Coarseness Adjuster
- Checkered Pattern Design
- Internal Adjustable Setting
- Double Bearing Positioning
- Excellent value for money
- Excellent grind consistency (particularly at the medium to coarse levels)
- Fast grinding speed
- Large grind range
- Contains plastic parts
- Small capacity (25 grams)
Best Manual Coffee Grinder – FAQs
So, you are interested in a manual coffee grinder? Great! In this article, we will answer some of the most asked questions about manual grinders.
Manual grinders offer several key benefits over electric grinders. First, they allow you to grind coffee beans exactly how you want them, resulting in a more customized cup of coffee. They are also much quieter than electric grinders, making them a great option for grinding coffee beans at home. Finally, manual grinders are often much more affordable than electric models.
Using a manual grinder is easy – all you need to do is add coffee beans to the grinding chamber, adjust the grinder size, and then twist the grinder handle. Be sure to watch our video tutorial for a demonstration.
There is not one perfect grinder size for all manual grinders – it depends on the specific grinder model and your own personal preferences. However, a general rule of thumb is to start with a medium grind size and then adjust it up or down depending on how you like your coffee. Be sure to experiment until you find the grind size that is perfect for you.
Cleaning a manual grinder is easy – all you need is damp cloth. Be sure to remove all the coffee grounds from the grinding chamber, and then use the damp cloth to wipe down the exterior of the grinder. You can also use a small brush to clean any stubborn coffee grounds from the grinding cone.
There are two types of coffee – Robusta and Arabica. Arabica beans are more expensive but have a richer flavor. Robusta beans are more bitter and have a higher caffeine content.
When considering what type of grinder to buy, you need to think about what type of coffee you want to make. If you want to make espresso, you will need a finer grind than if you are just making regular coffee.
Another thing to consider is how often you will be using the grinder. If you plan on grinding coffee every day, you will want to buy a grinder that is durable and easy to use. If you only plan to use it occasionally, a less expensive grinder will work simply fine.
A blade grinder has blades that chop the coffee beans into smaller pieces. A burr grinder has two grinding surfaces – one that grinds the beans and one that crushes them. Burr grinders produce a more consistent grind than blade grinders.
A burr grinder is usually better for espresso because it produces a more consistent grind. However, some people prefer to use a blade grinder for espresso because it gives the coffee a more intense flavor.
How often you need to clean your grinder depends on how often you use it. If you use it every day, you should clean it at least once a week. If you only use it occasionally, you can probably get away with cleaning it once a month. Cleaning your grinder is easy – just remove the grinds and wash the parts with warm, soapy water.
Yes, a manual grinder can be used to grind spices. However, it may not produce as fine a grinder specifically designed for spices.
The best way to store coffee beans is in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. Avoid storing them in the fridge or freezer because the extreme temperatures can affect the flavor of the beans.
If you are in the market for a new coffee grinder, we highly recommend checking out some of the best manual coffee grinders on the market. Not only are they more affordable than electric grinders, but they also offer unparalleled precision and control when it comes to grinding your beans.
We hope this article has helped you learn more about what to look for in a quality coffee grinder and given you some ideas as to which models might be best suited for your needs. Thanks for reading!
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