It may seem convenient to buy instant ground coffee, fill up your coffee machine, and brew within minutes, but is instant coffee rich in flavor and aroma?
The fact of the matter is that grinding whole coffee beans at your home right before brewing always provides a better coffee profile. That explains why 79% of Americans prefer making their favorite coffee at home.
For many, it is a ritual — grinding whole beans for fresh coffee grounds that result in a hot cuppa Joe with just the right kick and a mesmerizing aroma.
This is why need a manual grinder; to get the best from your coffee beans.
Sure, using it is a bit more time-consuming than electric grinders, but you simply can’t compare the quality, aroma and flavor of the resulting coffee with anything else.
There are a variety of units out there that are simple to use and do a bang-up job, but not all are built the same. We compared and reviewed some of the best manual coffee grinders on the market to help you find the best one for your needs.
The Best Manual Coffee Grinders
Top Pick –1Zpresso Manual Coffee Grinder
If you want an above-average manual coffee grinder that is reliable and delivers the best cup of Java, consistently — get the 1Zpresso Manual Coffee Grinder, it is undoubtedly the best manual coffee grinder in the market, and therefore our top pick.
This premium burr grinder is a part of the ever so popular 1ZPresso grinder product line, but what sets it apart from its counterparts is the fact that it is a lot more compact and has a smaller footprint along with the same powerful functions and overall build quality.
If you travel often and want to make sure that you are never too far away from the perfect brew, take this unit everywhere with you.
It’s so lightweight and convenient that you won’t even know it’s there until you need it – it is as small as a can of soft drink and weighs only 400 grams. Additionally, it can whip out enough grounds for at least two cups of coffee in a matter of minutes.
The 1Zpresso Manual Coffee Grinder has a triaxial design and dual bearings, which ensure a consistent grind, better stability, and easy adjustability — you have the option to select from 60 clicks.
Add to that, cleaning the unit is child’s play – pull it apart for detailed cleaning and then screw it back together (no tools required).
- Sturdy build quality
- Easy to carry
- Easy to clean
- 60 clicks
- Only a 20-gram capacity
Best Fine Coffee Grinder — Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Mill Grinder
If you want exceptional coffee grounds to whip out the best Turkish coffee and need a beautiful looking appliance with a small footprint, then we recommend the Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Mill Grinder.
With exceptional grinding capabilities, a conical-burr, and 25 years of coverage, this gorgeous black bench wood coffee grinder is the perfect addition to your coffee-making experience.
It is perfectly sized – not as big as your typical electrical burr grinder, but still bigger than other products in its category.
The Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Mill Grinder provides amazing grounds on each cycle and courtesy of the many settings; you can grind for any type of brew, even espresso, and Turkish coffee.
Furthermore, the settings can be adjusted easily by a knob right under the crank. While grinding whole beans, you can place it between your thighs for stability or leave it on the counter – either way, it won’t budge.
- Made from durable material
- Little to no wastage of coffee
- Adjustable settings
- Great for espresso and Turkish coffee
- Looks beautiful
- A bit heavy
- Difficulty in adjusting the setting
- Slightly expensive
The Best Designed Manual Coffee Grinder — Akirakoki Manual Coffee Bean Grinder
If you have a beautiful kitchen and want to adorn it with a masterpiece of a coffee grinder, we suggest you take a look at the Akirakoki Manual Coffee Bean Grinder. It is hands down one of the best-looking manual coffee grinders.
Apart from look and feel, this unit also does well in the performance department. It features a reasonably sized grind capacity, a durable conical-burr, adjustable settings, and much more!
The Akirakoki Manual Coffee Bean Grinder is made from a single piece of solid wood, with a premium cast iron conical-burr that is corrosion-resistant and produces next to no heat. So you can rest assured that the aroma and flavor of your coffee won’t disappear during the grinding and extraction processes. Plus, it is easy to operate and emits very little noise.
Also, you can seamlessly adjust the thickness of the grind by adjusting the screw beneath the grinder’s base. To top it all, carrying it around is quite convenient, and you can grind enough coffee beans for three to four cups of coffee in one cycle.
- Beautiful minimalistic construction
- Minimal coffee wastage
- Makes enough for 3 to 4 cups of coffee
- Cast iron burr is durable and produces no heat
- Grinding takes more time than other manual grinders
Best All-Rounder Manual Coffee Grinder — JavaPresse Manual Coffee Grinder
If you need a one of a kind grinder that excels in functionality, portability, and comes at a reasonable price point, go for the JavaPresse Manual Coffee Grinder.
It has a durable stainless steel body, a ceramic conical-burr, and a removable crank, so you can carry it easily to use it as and when you please. Plus, the unit has a reputation for offering consistent results, thanks to the featured dual plate system.
To adjust the grind thickness, the JavaPresse Manual Coffee Grinder has a click-knob right beneath the burr, you can click through 18 settings to get your desired consistency. It may take you some time to get used to it, but once mastered, you will understand how easy and convenient this machine is.
The featured ceramic combo burrs will last your five times longer than stainless steel burrs. Since it has to be used manually, it doesn’t make much noise as compared to electric burr grinders.
Above all, every JavaPresse Manual Coffee Grinder comes with a free bag of whole bean coffee — just use the unique code on the box to request your bag.
- Reasonable price point
- Lightweight and portable
- Stainless steel body
- 18 adjustable settings
- Has a learning curve to it
Things To Consider
If you prefer grinding your own coffee even when on the road, instead of using the store-bought version, a cylindrical shaped grinder is a good buy. It’s compact, durable, and portable so that it can be used anywhere easily.
On the other hand, if you like to grind coffee at home and have plenty of shelf space, go for the slightly-bigger and sturdier manual units that pack a substantial amount of power.
Compact grinders can serve a cup or two on each grind cycle, but if you need to grind a big batch in one-go, buy a manual coffee grinder with a larger capacity. Or if you have the time and patience for it, you could always grind multiple times on smaller units.
In short, your choice depends on the amount of required coffee grounds and the time at hand.
The grinder’s quality is as important as the resulting coffee grounds because a sturdy built is vital for safety, consistency, and durability.
Ceramic units are sturdy, look beautiful, and can seamlessly add to any counter space. In contrast, stainless steel units are best for frequent travelers and outdoorsy type of people who grind coffee on the go.
To get the same flavorsome taste every time, you need to consider the type of burr being used in the manual grinder. Here are your options:
This cone-shaped burr is more affordable than other options, and it is pretty good at grinding coffee particles in small or large sizes. It is often the burr grinder of choice for those who want to prepare grounds for espresso.
They make very little noise, are easy to clean, and result in minimal grinding waste.
On the other hand, flat-burr units are a bit expensive, but they are much more powerful and result in uniformly ground coffee. You can use it to curate a variety of different-sized grounds that help you prepare unique types and flavors of coffee.
However, they produce a considerable amount of waste, are a little noisy, and have a learning curve to them. Once you have mastered the appliance, you would be whipping out some of the best coffee grounds on each cycle.
Consider the grind settings of your chosen manual coffee grinder, because getting the perfect brew often depends on how fine the resulting grounds are.
For most units, you’ll find that there is an adjustable ring inside them – turn it counter-clockwise to get thicker grounds and clockwise for a finer grind.
If you like to have Turkish coffee, you may need fine grounds, whereas if you prefer French press coffee, you may need thicker grounds for the perfect coffee cup.
Many manual coffee grinders come with several setting options, and an 18 grind setting unit is the best out of all.
You may have the most well-built unit that’s made from sturdy materials, but there is always a slight chance that some of its parts may break down or loosen up after extended usage.
That’s why you should always have the option to buy individual parts.
To enhance the grinding experience, some manual coffee grinders come with additional bells and whistles, such as:
- Collapsible funnel — it ensures that you won’t spill beans by driving them down to the grinder base.
- Lid and rings — an airtight silicone lid keeps the prepared grounds fresh for a reasonable amount of time, and the silicone rings at the bottom reduce the chances of your countertop getting scratched.
- Silicone Grip—a grip helps in holding the grinder’s body with ease, and cranking it up without stressing your arms. To add to that, the grip also makes it easy to carry and raises its aesthetic appeal.
- Covers—for easy portability, some manual coffee grinders come with covers such as string bags.
You can buy a coffee grinder for as low as $10, but if you are in the market for something more exclusive, prepare to pay more than $200. The higher-priced options have a larger grind capacity, more options to select from, are made from sturdier materials, and so on.
In your quest to buy the cheapest unit out there, please make sure that you are not sacrificing quality and reliability. Your ideal pick would be a unit that does an excellent job with lesser cranks.
Plus, it should give you a good number of years, be portable, and easy to clean.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)
Why Choose A Manual Coffee Grinder Over Electric?
Manual coffee grinders are user-friendly, economical, and compact, and the ground quality depends on the chosen settings and the invested energy.
Is It Better To Grind Your Own Coffee?
But do try it out for yourself, and you too will agree that a fresh batch made from manually-ground coffee is more flavorsome and smells incredible. This is why it makes more sense to grind your own coffee.
How Much Time Is Required To Grind Coffee?
It takes about a minute to grind enough for a cup or two.
Should I Grind Beans Way In Advance?
It’s best to grind beans right before you brew coffee because that is the secret to more flavor and richness.
How Long Does Roasted Coffee Last?
If kept in an airtight foil bag, it can easily last for three months, but try to grind and use it within 4 to 6 weeks to get the best possible flavor.
Is It Cheaper To Buy Ground Or Whole Bean Coffee?
Ground coffee tends to be a bit cheaper than whole bean coffee as you get a better cup of Joe from the later.