pouring whole coffee beans in manual coffee grinder
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  • Manual vs. Electric Coffee Grinder: Which one is better?

If you love coffee and want to start making your own, this is probably one of the questions that popped out first. Coffee that you can buy at the grocery store is always the same. But if you make your own coffee, you can always do a bit of experimenting to find a taste that suits you the best. Also, coffee is much tastier when you make it by yourself.

However, when it comes to the actual taste of a coffee, there are a few things that play an essential role. Choosing a perfect grinder is one of those crucial things. If you can’t decide between a manual or electric coffee grinder at first, you should know that both of them have good and bad points. 

Manual Coffee Grinders

Manual coffee grinders are great because they can produce uniform sized grounds for all grind sizes. They are usually very small and can be held with one hand and cranked with another. Manual coffee grinders are also pretty good if you travel often. They are small and convenient.

Also, manual grinders are usually more durable. Even when you look at one, you will notice that they seem to be stronger than the electric ones. It is mainly because their mechanism is very simple, and everything is connected with a rod between burs and a handle. They don’t have any lights, sophisticated technology or microchips, as electric grinders do.

However, manual grinding is more complicated than pressing the button on the electric grinder. It might not be difficult if you are making coffee for yourself, but if you are making coffee for a group, it can be a little bit tiring. However, over time,  your stamina should increase and you will be using less effort to grind coffee for the whole group.

Another good thing about manual coffee grinders is that they are usually pretty cheap. For as little as $30, you can have a very good, reliable coffee grinder, and be sure that it will serve its purpose for years and years. They usually don’t require any special maintenance, and you don’t have to worry that they will break if they happen to fall on the ground. However, they usually offer limited grind size settings.

Electric Coffee Grinders

There are many variations of electric coffee grinders. One thing is sure — they are more expensive. If you decide to buy a cheap one, you will achieve much better results with a manual grinder, which is even more affordable than the most affordable electric grinder.

Cheap electric grinders are those that usually cost less than $100. Although you can’t see much difference on the outside, they typically come with low-quality burrs. Instead of making a fine, uniform-sized powder, they will act as dull blades and provide you with uneven grounds. It will have a significant impact on the taste of coffee you make. 

However, if you buy a high-quality electric coffee grinder, you will see great results. They have sturdy gears that move the burrs, which create fine, uniform-sized coffee with a press of a button. Some grinders have an option to automatically dose ground coffee according to weight, which can be a pretty useful feature. They are also perfect if you need to grind coffee for a group of people, and are especially helpful for people who drink coffee multiple times per day. 

Some electric grinders come with over 40 grind options that range from French coffee to espresso, which allows for a very unique coffee taste, according to what you want. 

Electric coffee grinders also have a few downsides. At first, they cost much more, so you will likely have to pay at least $150 for a quality grinder. Also, even the most expensive electric coffee grinders are usually very noisy, so you should definitely bear that in mind. If you live in an apartment or have roommates, grinding coffee with an electric grinder might not be the best thing to do in the morning.

Also, if you are a frequent traveler, an electric grinder might not suit your needs. It’s both big and requires electricity. Another essential thing to consider is that only high-end grinders can achieve espresso ground size.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, when it comes to the manual vs. electric coffee grinder debate, you should remember all the pros and cons that both manual and electric grinders have. You should choose depending on what your needs are

If you are a frequent traveler and need to only make coffee for yourself, and also want a device that will serve for an extended period, then a manual grinder is the best choice for you.

However, if you have more money to invest, or need to make regular coffee for groups of people, you should aim for a high-quality electric grinder. Also, keep in mind that an expensive grinder will definitely pay off, while the low-quality ones should be avoided.

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