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The best cup of coffee isn’t made from the most expensive beans or triple-filtered spring water. To get the best-tasting brew, the beans must be ground to just the right size for the kind of coffee maker and brewing method you’re using. For pour-over-style coffee makers, you want the best pour-over coffee grinder you can find, and this usually means a model with metal or ceramic burrs for more uniform grind size. You should also be able to adjust the size of the grind to accommodate different beans and brewing methods.
Even if you have the best prosumer espresso machine, not just any old grinder will do. If your machine can’t produce coffee grounds of a predominantly uniform size, you’ll end up brewing a pot of coffee with less than stellar flavor—and there’s few things more disappointing to a coffee-lover than a bad cup of joe first thing in the morning.
While all this may seem a bit complicated, don’t worry! Just keep reading our guide below, and you’ll be sipping the best pour-over coffee you have ever made in no time at all.
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: This little grinder can adjust its grind levels according to your preferences, so you can perfectly brew every cup. It’s also a highly portable option that you can take anywhere. It’s a perfect travel companion.
This option has a built-in adjustable grind selector. You’ll be able to choose from over 18 settings. This means you have absolute precision control over the level of coarseness you produce with the grind. You’ll be able to make pour-over, espresso, drip, and multiple other coffee styles. However, some consumers report that the grind levels are somewhat inconsistent when using the medium-coarse setting. If you need pure consistency, this might not be an excellent option for you.
It’s also a highly portable model. Because of the small size, you can bring it anywhere, whether that’s out camping, to the office, or just while traveling. Since it’s a hand crank option, you’ll avoid having 90% of the noise produced by automatic coffee grinders. It also means you don’t have to worry about access to electricity or to find an outlet before you can use it. It uses a professional-grade ceramic conical burr to pull out the best flavors possible.
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: This model can be used across the board for anything that needs to be ground in your kitchen, like nuts or herbs for instance. It always produces consistent grinds no matter what you’re using it for. This is a highly powerful model.
If you’re looking for a consistent grind every time, this model is the one for you. It can produce perfect coffee grounds using one of three settings: fine, medium, or coarse. This gives you the option to try multiple styles of coffee, such as pour-over or espresso. Unfortunately, some people say their model didn’t last as long as they wanted. In some instances, it only lasted around 6 months or so.
You’ll enjoy how compact and stylish this automatic coffee grinder is. You’ll be able to easily store it away when not in use or keep it on the counter without taking up too much space. You could even use it in an office environment. Each machine produced by this brand is put through rigorous quality assurance testing to ensure that you only receive a high-quality model. It’s designed with long-lasting blades made from durable stainless steel, so they don’t dull out from consistent usage.
Award: BEST FOR PRECISE GRINDS
WHY WE LIKE IT: You can serve up to twelve cups from a single grind with this model. It also offers multiple settings so you can make different types of coffee. You’ll enjoy the premium style of the grounds that this model produces.
You’ll be able to serve up to 12 cups with this option. It’s perfect for your daily brew or for entertaining any guests that come over. There is improved performance and precision built into this model, and it gives a 33% higher grinding range than competitor models. Unfortunately, this isn’t the cleanest option up for grabs. It can be pretty messy when you open it up for cleaning, which could be a dealbreaker for some.
Coffee is ground in this model with a premium burr grind. It uses a metallic flat burr grinder to control the uniformity and grind level completely. There are 12 settings available, alongside some intermediate settings. This is another way this model offers tons of ways to customize your cup of coffee. It’s a large capacity option with an 8-ounce coffee bean hopper. The grounds container is fully removable to further the convenience this model offers.
Award: BEST FOR SMALL SPACES
WHY WE LIKE IT: All of the settings for this grinder adjust easily to your preferences. It is also a highly compact model you can fit almost anywhere. This is a non-manual option, so you don’t have to use your hands to crank anything.
This is an adjustable option that will grind according to your preference. You can use the timer knob, labeled in seconds, to change settings. This allows you to have precise control over the amount of time your coffee beans are ground for. It has a removable grinding cup, so there’ll be less mess during your morning brew. If you choose this model, you’ll have to make sure that you clean the blades often. Otherwise, they can get clogged with the coffee debris left behind.
This removable grinding cup can hold up to 2.5 ounces of ground coffee beans. This makes it a large-capacity option. You can also use this grinder for spices and herbs like pepper, cumin, parsley, cinnamon, soya, quinoa, sorghum, rice, fenugreek, and more. It’s a multi-functional option with tons of uses around the kitchen. It’s also quieter than competitor models, only coming in at around 63 decibels. This is especially important for automatic coffee grinders.
Award: BEST FOR HAND GRINDING
WHY WE LIKE IT: This is an updated model with fantastic new features. All of the settings adjust fully, so you can get the grind you need. It’s highly portable, so you can also take it wherever you need to.
This improved model is 38mm in diameter. Because of this, it’s highly transportable from place to place. You can use it in the office, your home, out camping, or even while traveling. It comes in a highly stylish dark color that will fit into any setting. Unfortunately, this is a manual option, so you’ll have to hand-crank it. Some people prefer this method, but an automatic model might be the better option for others.
You can leave it on the counter to add to the decor or easily store it away since it’s so tiny. It’s a contemporary classic in the world of coffee, using a conical burr. Since it isn’t automatic, you don’t have to worry about needing electricity or finding an available outlet. The adjustable settings are a fantastic way to ensure you have complete control over your final grind. This means you can make all sorts of coffee types.
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Award: BEST FOR LUXURY BREWING
WHY WE LIKE IT: This stunning design features precision engineering that makes every grind as good as the first. You’ll enjoy best-in-class components, like premium ball bearings and a threadless end-cap to ensure the quality of your brew.
This ultra-durable model is made with only the best materials. The brand used signature air-craft grade aluminum, which is lightweight and has excellent longevity. The precision engineering used in its manufacturing produced a best-in-class stainless steel burr, which grinds your coffee beans. This model is highly powerful. However, it might be a little too advanced for what you need. We only suggest it for the true coffee connoisseur looking to up their game.
You’ll enjoy the 50 unique grind settings included in this coffee grinder model. Having so many adjustable settings to choose from means you can control your grind level precisely. The ideal consistency is necessary to make a great cup of coffee, so this model will make every cup feel like a luxury. It’s also highly portable and features a clip-and-flip carabiner along with a handle with an ergonomic grip. This means you can bring it anywhere.
Before you can brew the perfect cup of coffee, you need to break down whole coffee beans into grounds of the correct size for your coffee maker and brewing method. If you prefer the flavor of pour-over brews to those produced by drip or percolated coffee makers, this is where a pour-over coffee grinder comes in handy. That said, check out our review of Dr. Drip coffee.
In the most basic sense, a pour-over coffee grinder is simply a grinder that is capable of grinding coffee beans down to a size suitable for use in pour-over coffee makers. Some models are manual, while others require electricity or batteries to operate. They will also have metal or ceramic burrs for grinding the beans. For a look at such a model, read our Cuisinart Next Generation Burr Grind & Brew 12-cup DGB-800 review.
Every brewing method requires a different type of grind, or coarseness, for the beans. Espresso, for example, uses a fine grind, pour-over is best with a medium-fine grind, and French Press or cold-brews require a coarse to extra coarse grind. So, most grinders will have settings that allow you to adjust the coarseness according to your needs.
While they both do essentially the same thing, the biggest difference between a pour-over coffee grinder and a bladed grinder is in how it grinds the beans. Bladed grinders are great for spices but not for coffee. Because the blades work like two knives that slice through the beans willy-nilly, the grounds they produce end up as an inconsistent mix of sizes. This is undesirable when it comes to flavor extraction because the resulting brewed coffee will either be too sour or too bitter.
To get consistently-sized grounds and a good-tasting brew, you need a grinder that utilizes burrs, not blades. The burrs can be made of either metal or ceramic, and be either flat or conical in shape. Instead of chopping up the beans like a bladed grinder, the burrs actually grind the beans to the desired size.
Many bladed grinders also have minimal settings. Typically, you simply have to press a button, and the blades will start spinning. A burr grinder will allow you to set the size of the grind, which means you can use the same grinder to produce the perfect ground coffee for a number of brewing methods.
A pour-over coffee grinder is a relatively simple machine. Regardless of whether it’s a manual or electric model, they both grind coffee beans in the same way. After you set the machine to the desired coarseness and pour the whole coffee beans into the top of the grinder, you either turn the handle (on a manual model) or power it on (if an electric model). The beans are then pulverized between two sets of opposing burrs until they’re at the desired coarseness. Then, they’re ready to be used in your reusable coffee filter.
If you prefer to brew your own coffee at home and all you’ve got is a bladed grinder, then you’ll want to look into buying a pour-over coffee grinder to get the right coarseness for the best flavor extraction. On the other hand, you may be just starting to explore your home coffee brewing options beyond the standard drip maker. In that case, there’s no reason not to start out with a good burr grinder to help you along your way.
Coffee grinders have a fairly long lifespan, but as with many electronics and gadgets, just how long will depend on how you look after them. Generally, a good coffee bean grinder should last around six or seven years. During that time, however, some parts might need replacing. Depending on how often the grinder is used and the coarseness of your grinds, the burr plates are usually the first thing to need replacing.
From easy to assemble and use models to machines with intricate settings, there is a wide variety of pour-over coffee grinders to choose from. But there are just as many factors that you need to take into consideration before you set out to buy a coffee grinder. On the other hand, if you already have a grinder, you might want an automatic pour-over coffee maker instead.
While both machines will technically get the job done, a bladed grinder isn’t ideal for grinding coffee. You’ll want a grinder that uses either metal or ceramic burrs if you want to achieve the appropriate coarseness for your brewing method of choice. Bladed grinders produce ground coffee that’s too inconsistent, resulting in a flavor that’s either too sour or too bitter.
A manual grinder, as the name implies, will have you turning a handle to get the beans moving. This naturally takes some strength and staying power, as it’s no easy task. An electric or battery-powered grinder is easier, and it requires no arm strength from you.
Where you will be using the grinder the most could also determine what type of grinder you get. If you have a portable coffee maker for camping, a manual grinder might be best. But if the brewing process mainly takes place in your home or office, invest in something that has a few more features.
The important thing about grinders for pour-over coffee is the coarseness of the grind. Think about what types of brews you want to make, and what you then would require from the grinder. For a simple pour-over coffee, a rough grind is acceptable. However, if you think you might want to try making espresso, which requires a fine grind, you’ll want a grinder that can produce both. Or, you can pick up a great espresso machine with a grinder.
Coffee grinders come in different sizes with different holding capacities. A smaller grinder will be perfect if you want to make single servings of pour-over coffee, but it will be time-consuming to make larger batches. If you want to grind an entire bag of whole beans in one sitting, you will need a machine that can handle the load. Storage is also of consideration, so look for a grinder that provides you with an airtight container as well.