Last updated on October 27th, 2023 at 16:28
So your grinder has packed in, and you are shaking like a shitting dog need your caffeine fix, what a nightmare…this article will show you how to crush coffee beans at home using a wide range of methods and a variety of everyday tools that you have at the ready in your kitchen.
You will learn how to grind coffee beans without a grinder, with a hand grinder – which is always a great backup. I also cover how to grind coffee beans in a food processor, a blender and other machines you may have in your kitchen.
Let’s get cracking, if you pardon a pun!
How To Crush Coffee Beans At Home — How To Grind Coffee Beans Without A Grinder
Table Of Content
- 1 How To Crush Coffee Beans At Home — How To Grind Coffee Beans Without A Grinder
- 2 How To Grind Coffee Beans By Hand
- 3 How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Hand Grinder
- 4 How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Mortar And Pestle
- 5 How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Roller
- 6 How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Hammer
- 7 How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Blender
- 8 How To Grind Coffee Beans In A Food Processor?
- 9 Can You Grind Coffee Beans In A Magic Bullet?
- 10 Can You Grind Coffee Beans In A Nutribullet?
- 11 Can You Grind Coffee Beans In The Ninja Blender?
- 12 Frequently Asked Questions About How To Crush Coffee Beans At Home
- 12.1 What Is The Best Way To Grind Coffee Beans?
- 12.2 Is Coffee Better If You Grind Your Own Beans?
- 12.3 Is It Cheaper To Grind Your Own Coffee?
- 12.4 How Long Does Coffee Stay Fresh After Grinding?
- 12.5 Is It OK To Grind Coffee Beans The Night Before?
- 12.6 How Long In Advance Can You Grind Coffee Beans?
- 12.7 How Do I Crush My Coffee Beans?
- 12.8 What Is The Easiest Way To Grind Coffee Beans?
- 13 Frappé-ing It All Up – How To Crush Coffee Beans At Home
I was set this challenge by a very beautiful, smart young girl, a regular at my coffee shop in Vietnam. She set me the challenge of grinding coffee beans without a grinder.
I quickly produced a hand grinder she flowed and followed up with “without a grinder and without electricity”.
I love a challenge, especially one that forces me to think. And think I did! I tested them out as well to find out what the quality of coffee would be like.
Varying techniques include a hammer (yep a hammer!), a roller, a mortar and pestle and, yes, the use of a hand grinder.
Let’s get banging on and detail these techniques.
How To Grind Coffee Beans By Hand
Grinding coffee beans by hand is quite a challenge and can seem at times like going back to the dark ages and produces outstanding coffee!
It requires effort, motivation and determination. Try these and get a slightly different and better coffee taste and experience as a result.
How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Hand Grinder
In principle, and by studying the functionality of hand grinders, you should get a better tasting coffee than an electric grinder regardless of whether it is a blade grinder or a ceramic or burr grinder.
The reason for this is very simple and what makes a ceramic burr grinder slightly better than metal burr grinders. Automatic coffee grinders work by grinding at high speeds and, due to the friction and heat, causes the beans to slightly cook for a short period of time.
This “cooking” of the beans means you lose a little aroma and flavor.
It takes longer to grind your beans by hand. Typically, it takes you 2 minutes of cranking to produce a scoop full for your portafilter.
How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Hand Grinder Step by Step
Step 1: Locate the top nut and unscrew it to remove it. Remove the handle and the locking ring. Note: The vast majority of hand grinders have a top nut; there are a few that don’t. Don’t get lost or confused if your manual grinder does not have one.
Step 2: Locate and turn the grind adjustment ring. Hold the central shaft in place as you are turning the grind adjustment grind. Use the locking ring to lock in your grind setting.
Pro Tip: Rotating clockwise results in a finer grind. Rotating counter-clockwise will result in a coarser grind.
Step 3: Put the handle back in place and secure it with the top nut.
Step 4: Use some beans to test out your setting and find if you have the right grind for your ground coffee. You may wish to readjust for a medium or coarse grind. Don’t forget to change the direction of your grind to from clockwise to an anticlockwise to get a different grind size.
Once you have your perfect grind, you are ready to make some freshly ground coffee and
A plus point here is that, with hand grinders you will not suffer from inconsistent grinds and enjoy a more consistent grind. That is exactly why I put this at the top of the list when learning how to crush coffee beans at home.
How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Mortar And Pestle
This is a technique that I like! The idea of a mortar and pestle came to my mind as it is an item that every single house in Thailand has for making their famed som tam (papaya salad).
It has also been used over the centuries by pharmacists to grind herbs, spices and plants into a very fine powder. It is also one of the better coffee grinding methods that you can do at home and without a machine of any kind.
This technique involves a combination of both the hammering and rolling motions. Done well, you can produce a consistent grind and a fine grind that is similar to an espresso grind.
How To Grind Your Coffee Beans Using A Mortar And Pestle Step By Step
Step 1: Use a small amount of coffee beans and put them in your mortar. Using a small amount and adding to it when necessary helps you to get consistency in your grind in only a few minutes.
Step 2: Using your dominant hand, hold your pestle and with your other hand hold the mortar in place.
Step 3: Use your pestle to hammer down and crush your coffee beans. Crush every single bit of them, all the corners to get that great grind quality and uniform grind.
Step 4: Keep adding beans slowly when you need to and keep crushing them until you have an amount of fine coffee powder that you need to make your cuppa Joe.
Step 5: Don’t skip this step. After you have crushed your beans, roll your coffee grounds around using your pestle to get a finer texture. This step is worth it for a richer flavor later when you make your brew. Once the grounds are getting finer, keep going with your grinding and rolling action until you have the texture of a well ground coffee bean.
This next step is the best — select your brew method and make your coffee. Drink and enjoy!
How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Roller
This is, at its very core, a variation of the large industrial grinders use to grind coffee that you will see at large factories that grind coffee by the ton, literally.
A roller mill grinds coffee beans by using gravity to pass them between a pair or a set of grooved steel cylinders which rotate against each other, which in turn forces the coffee through the small gap between them.
The rolling pin method is based on something that is known to work and is, in all probability, how the pre-ground coffee that you buy at your local shop is ground.
How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Rolling Pin Step By Step
Step 1: Weight your coffee beans and put the amount that you need in a sealable ziplock bag. Remove all the air before you seal it.
Step 2: Crush the bean as you would in a similar fashion as the mortar and pestle method. Use the hammering based method to pound the beans.
Step 3: Once you have crushed the beans, firmly drive your rolling pin over your bag of crushed coffee. Apply as much pressure as needed. Repeat this process as many times as necessary. With each repetition, gather the crushed coffee to the middle and keep repeating.
This 3rd step takes time, patience and a lot of effort to get the grind and consistency that you are looking for.
Pro Tip: You can grind a lot of beans this way if you want to and store them in your freezer for a maximum of 21 days. You can also store them in your fridge for a maximum of 7 days. Do not store for more than 21 days in the freezer as you will end up with freezer burn.
How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Hammer
This sounds like a rather brutal and extreme method, grinding coffee beans with a hammer! Not so much. It is not as if we are using a sledge hammer or even a “real” hammer.
The hammer we are going to use is that tiny wooden or metal meat tenderizer hammer that you have in your kitchen.
This technique is very similar to the above rolling pin method. You simply put the required amount of beans in a bag using a moderate but not excessive amount of pressure while smashing them. The technique is not to strike the bag in the way that you strike a nail.
How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Hammer Step By Step
Step 1: Put your coffee beans in a bag and remove all air from the bag.
Step 2: With your hammer crush the beans. Do not strike like you would a nail. Use a soft to medium strike like you would have with the rolling pin. Press down firmly on the hammer.
Step 3: Move your crushed beans to one side of your bag. This way you can get an even and fine grind.
How To Grind Coffee Beans With A Blender
And now we are on to the second part of this article where I am going to talk about a few methods of grinding beans using the various electric kitchen tools that you may already have in your kitchen.
Step 1 Measure How Much Coffee Beans You Need
The very first step for any method of brewing or grinding coffee is to calculate how much coffee beans you will need. This is where your coffee scales will come in handy. If you don’t have a scale handy half a cup of coffee will be fine as a ballpark estimate.
The next step is deciding on the type of grind that you need, be it a coarse grind or a medium grind. An extra fine grind might be a struggle but possible depending on the type of blender that you have.
Step 2 Using Your Blender
How you go about grinding your coffee beans will depend on the grind that you are hoping to achieve.
A Coarse Coffee Grind
Getting a coarse grind is more complicated with a blender than it is with a medium-fine grind. The trick is to grind in pulses vs grinding them all at once. It takes a bit of practice, and it is not difficult at all to get coarse coffee grounds.
In place of grinding for a few minutes and being done with it, you need to grind the beans for a few seconds. After you have ground your beans for a few seconds, shake your blender for a few seconds and repeat this process until all your beans are ground.
This grind is good for brew filter coffee machines and for making cold brew coffee.
Making A Medium Fine Grind
Getting a good medium fine grind is incredibly easy with a blender. Just simply add a 1/4 cup or 1/2 cup of coffee or whole coffee beans to your blender. Switch on your blender and switch it on and let it do its magic for a few minutes. When all your beans are ground, you will end up with a nice medium to fine grind.
This grind is good for a French press, drip coffee maker and pour over coffee makers.
How To Grind Coffee Beans In A Food Processor?
Grinding coffee beans in your food processor is very similar to using a blender to get the job done. It is super easy and almost effortless.
Step 1: Measure and pour a few scoops of coffee beans into your processor bowl. Put the lid back on the top firmly.
Step 2: As per the blender technique above, make good use of the pulse technique. Grind for a few seconds. Stop and shake your food processor. Then rinse and repeat until your beans are fully ground. Best results can be achieved by tilting your machine while it is grinding. The tilting technique causes the bigger beans to move into the spinning blades.
Step 3: Empty your food processor and add more beans, repeating the process until you have enough coffee ground to make your coffee.
Step 4: Make and enjoy your coffee!
Can You Grind Coffee Beans In A Magic Bullet?
you can grind coffee beans with a magic bullet. This, however, does not mean that you should.
Despite the fact that you can, the grind quality is not the greatest, and the grinds have a tendency to clump together.
Worse still, you have zero control over the grind size. You have no consistency of particle size or any consistency in grind size at all.
How To Grind Coffee Beans In A Magic Bullet Step By Step
To grind your beans in this rather handy and highly useful piece of equipment, there are only a few steps to follow.
Step 1: Use The Flat Blade
Your magic bullet has several accessories. To grind your beans well, you will need to attach the flat blade to it. The cross blade will not do the job at all.
Step 2: Get Your Coffee Beans And Fill Your Magic Bullet Blender Cup
Measure your coffee beans and fill the blender cup with them. When you have done this, put the blending cup back on the machine and ensure that it is properly locked in the bottom.
Step 3: Get Grinding
When you have the cup of your magic bullet correctly locked, you can start grinding your grounds. For the best result, keep pressing the cup in-between you’re pulsing presses technique.
You can then use these grinds to make an espresso, drip coffee, or use your French Press.
One notable plus point of the magic bullet is that you don’t need to flip the cup as you are blending, unlike a blender or processor.
Can You Grind Coffee Beans In A Nutribullet?
you can absolutely use your Nutribullet to grind coffee beans. This machine has the ability to make both a fine and coarse grind.
How To Grind Coffee beans In A Nutribullet Step By Step
Step 1: Have a good look at the instruction manual and according to their advice attach the flat blade to your Nutribullet.
Step 2: Fill the container with your coffee beans and close tightly.
Step 3: Power on your Nutribullet and grind for about 10 seconds and then stop. Now shake your machine for about 10 seconds to allow the larger particles to go to the bottom and separate themselves from the extra-fine, powdery coffee particles. Switch on your machine and grind for 10 seconds and “rise and repeat” the process until your coffee is completely ground.
That is all that is required. You are now ready to make your cuppa Joe and enjoy it.
Can You Grind Coffee Beans In The Ninja Blender?
When you are using any mechanical machine to grind coffee beans, you should always grind in small amounts at a time. This is inclusive of a hand grinder. This is due to the grinding process causing a build up of heat that is detrimental to the subsequent quality of your coffee.
The Ninja blender is no different. Something of note, the blades of a Ninja blender give you less consistency in grind size, and you may not get your preferred consistency or even a consistent texture.
That is the big C of Coffee – consistently getting great coffee. That is where grinders, particularly flat disk burr coffee grinders, are head and shoulders about everything when it comes to grinding.
How To Grind Coffee Beans In The Ninja Blender
Step 1: Select Your Desired Coffee Beans For Grinding.
There is an incredible range of coffee types, blends and roasts that you can find. Select the beans and get ready to grind them in your Ninja Blender.
Step 2: Put Your Beans In Your Ninja Blender.
Put your coffee beans into your Ninja Blender little by little as you only want to grind enough for the coffee that you are about to make. This ensures that you will get a good quality cup of coffee when you come to brewing it.
Also, this allows you to make your grind as fine or as coarse as you need it to be.
Step 3: Use The Pulse Technique.
Use the pulse technique by grinding for a few seconds and then shaking your machine and then repeating this process until all your coffee has been ground.
Step 4: Brew Time! Brew Your Beans And Enjoy.
Depending on your grind size and quality, you can use a number of coffee brewing methods including French press, drip coffee and if you grind fine enough espresso.
Frequently Asked Questions About How To Crush Coffee Beans At Home
What Is The Best Way To Grind Coffee Beans?
For me and in my opinion and experience, the best way to grind your coffee beans at home manually is by using the mortar and pestle method or using the hammer technique. These two require a little elbow grease, but the quality is good.
A food processor is you are busy and don’t have the time is a great technique and will get you a great texture in no time.
Is Coffee Better If You Grind Your Own Beans?
Yes, the end result of grinding your own bean is enjoying a better and fresher cup of coffee and having full control over the grind size and brewing process. When you buy preground coffee you are stuck with the grind size and are limited to the brewing processes that you can use.
Ultimately with your own ceramic burr grinder you can have full control over the grind size and ensure a perfect cup of coffee and grind to size that you need for any brewing technique.
Is It Cheaper To Grind Your Own Coffee?
No, it is not cheaper or any more expensive to grind your own coffee beans – for any grind size be it a medium grind or finer grind size. Pre-ground coffee costs the same as whole beans.
The difference is you get a better cup of coffee when you grind your own.
Pro Tip: A ceramic burr grinder produces a better quality grind than a blade grinder due to having greater consistency in grind size. Ceramic is a better material than metal due to less heat transfer from the burr to the beans and less of a problem of heat damaging the beans flavors.
How Long Does Coffee Stay Fresh After Grinding?
Coffee lovers and coffee aficionados like me are adamant that coffee only stays fresh for a 7 to 10-day period after grinding. The rule of thumb is 7 days. However, you have no reason to grind your coffee beans so far in advance.
Grind them as you are brewing a cup of coffee for maximum freshness, like they do in a coffee shop.
Is It OK To Grind Coffee Beans The Night Before?
Yes, it is perfectly okay to grind your whole bean coffee the night before, but you get no additional benefits from doing so.
It only takes a matter of seconds to grind, with a good quality grinder, the amount that you need for a cup of coffee. At Latte Love Brew we want you to get the best possible brew. Please grind your beans just before you start brewing.
How Long In Advance Can You Grind Coffee Beans?
As a rule of thumb, the longest you can grind your beans in advance is 7 days. You will get a much better and fresher, more aromatic cup of coffee that is richer in flavor when you grind your beans immediately before you brew them.
I have the habit of weighing my beans when they are whole and then grinding them as a matter of reducing the amount of time that oxygen is in contact with the grounds.
When you grind your beans, you increase the surface area that oxygen is in contact with them and accelerate their deterioration. This is why it is best to delay as long as possible, until brewing time.
How Do I Crush My Coffee Beans?
The easiest and most convenient way of crushing your coffee beans is is to use yoru food processor or blender. If you want to do it manually you can use a mortar and pestle or a rolling pin.
What Is The Easiest Way To Grind Coffee Beans?
The easiest and best way of grinding coffee beans is to use a ceramic flat burr grinder as a flat burr will produce the best grind quality and consistency in grind size. The ceramic material helps to eliminate the problem of heat dissipation.
Frappé-ing It All Up – How To Crush Coffee Beans At Home
Now that you know how to crush coffee beans at home and have a number of methods and techniques you have no excuse at all for what to do, heaven forbid, if your grinder breaks down.
As a coffee geek and lover I encourage you to try some of these techniques yourself, particularly the mortar and pestle method and get into the habit of using a hand grinder for a superior quality of coffee.
Do you have your own excellent techniques for crushing coffee beans?
Join our online coffee community on Facebook/Meta and share your “crushing secrets” with us all.
We look forward to hearing from you.