Grinding your own coffee beans at home unlocks fresh flavours and aromas that are mostly lost in pre-ground coffee – and investing in a coffee grinder is a great way to capture these flavour notes.

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These gadgets – also referred to as coffee mills – employ a seamless grinding mechanism that turns beans into grounds, which can then be used to make coffee straight away.

Whichever method you use, grinding your own beans and drinking freshly ground coffee can also bring benefits over drinking pre-ground coffee. Fresh coffee tends to be more flavourful – roasted beans are slower to go stale than shop-bought ground coffee, and having the smell of ground coffee around the house is a pleasure in its own right.

Read on for our pick of the best coffee grinders to suit a range of budgets, including the best manual coffee grinders and electric models. For more inspiration, check out our guide to picking the best coffee machine for your budget.

We've also outlined our tried-and-tested picks of the best espresso machines, best coffee pod machines, best bean-to-cup coffee machines and best filter coffee machines. For more than 400 buyers' guides, visit our reviews section.

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Best coffee grinders at a glance

Electric coffee grinders

  • Best electric coffee grinder: Fellow Opus Grinder, £209.95
  • Best coffee grinder for speedy results: De'Longhi Dedica Style KG521.M, £199.95
  • Best coffee grinder under £200: KitchenAid Coffee Grinder 5KCG8433, £159.20
  • Best coffee grinder for beginners: De'Longhi KG79 Coffee Grinder, £52
  • Best budget coffee grinder: Duronic Coffee Grinder CG250, £23.99
  • Best high-end coffee grinder: Smeg CGF01 grinder, £219
  • Best coffee grinder for precise results: Sage Smart Grinder Pro, £209.95

Manual coffee grinders

  • Best manual coffee grinder: Kilner coffee grinder set, £26.98
  • Best small hand coffee grinder: Porlex Tall II hand grinder, £70
  • Best mid-range hand coffee grinder: Hario Mini Mill Plus, £23.20

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Best electric coffee grinders to buy in 2024

Fellow Opus grinder

Fellow-Opus-grinder

Best electric coffee grinder

Pros:

  • 41 grind settings
  • Attractive and compact
  • Efficient
  • Easy to use
  • Mostly recyclable packaging

Cons:

  • Beans need to be weighed before grinding

Star rating: 5/5

Wattage: 140W

Understated and intuitive, the Opus grinder comes with 41 grind settings, a volumetric dosing lid to help with measuring beans and a spouted catch to minimise mess. We also love its smooth, rounded shape and textured panel across the top.

There's capacity for 200g ground coffee, which is enough for about 12 cups, and a simple turn of the dial is all that's needed to modify the grind size. Grinding is measured in seconds rather than cup size or dose, which means you'll need to measure your beans out before you grind, but the dosing measurements on the lid make this easier.

We found the performance excellent: there was solid consistency across the board, with noticeable differences in texture between fine, medium and coarse grounds. The noise the Opus generated wasn't too intrusive, and the timings were accurate when measured on a stopwatch, too.

De'Longhi Dedica Style KG521.M coffee grinder

DeLonghi-Dedica-Style-KG521.M-coffee-grinder

Best coffee grinder for speedy results

Pros:

  • 18 grind settings
  • Clear LCD display
  • Fast, even results

Cons:

  • Noisy
  • Instructions are quite vague
  • Some non-recyclable packaging

Star rating: 5/5

Wattage: 150W

If you want coffee in a hurry, the process of freshly grinding your beans may seem like a chore. But, the speed at which this De'Longhi grinder works impressed us. It produced enough grounds for two cups (19g) in 5 seconds on the coarse setting, which was significantly faster than other models we've tested. Our fine, medium and coarse grounds were also even in texture.

There are 18 settings with labels for different coffee types – like espresso, pour-over and French press – marked above the dial, so you know roughly which grind size to aim for. From there, you can adjust the dose and strength.

The machine itself has a brightly lit digital display and slimline build, and its container has an airtight seal to keep beans fresher for longer. The manual has diagrams but not much written guidance; thankfully, the controls are intuitive and some useful tips are displayed on the screen.

KitchenAid Coffee Grinder 5KCG8433

KitchenAid Coffee Grinder 5KCG8433

Best coffee grinder under £200

Pros:

  • Quiet
  • Easy to use
  • Gorgeous design
  • 70 grind grades

Cons:

  • It takes practice to achieve the perfect grind

Star rating: 4.5/5

Wattage: 150W

Lifting the KitchenAid Coffee Grinder from its box, it was a delight to see such a stylish, well-built machine, all black and shiny with stainless steel accents. Though tall at 38cm, it’s only 18cm deep so it won’t take up too much room on the worktop.

The experienced coffee maker should be able to find their way around easily, but those new to coffee grinding might want to invest in a bag of beans just to practice with, as there are a staggering 70 grind settings to choose from, as well as several special functions.

Initially, we found it all a little muddling. Still, it soon falls into place as the KitchenAid has multiple options, both semi and fully automatic, to help you make your best cup of coffee – there’s even a bright, digital screen to help you see what’s happening all the way through. Once mastered, the grinder delivers a consistent precision grind resulting in delicious coffee across all brews, including espresso.

De'Longhi KG79 burr coffee grinder

DeLonghi-KG79-burr-coffee-grinder

Best coffee grinder for beginners

Pros:

  • Compact and slimline
  • 16 settings
  • Clear interface

Cons:

  • Design is a little flimsy
  • Noisy
  • Slow

Star rating: 4/5

Wattage: 110W

If you're keen to start freshly grinding your own beans from home but don't want to fork out for an expensive gadget, this more affordable burr grinder from De'Longhi does the job well. It's unfussy and easy to use, with 16 settings and capacity for up to 120g beans. There are also two dials: one for adjusting the grind size, and another for dose (measured in cups).

Its lower price tag is reflected in the simple, plasticky design. It's also noisy during use and not especially quick, taking around 15-17 seconds to grind two cups on the coarse setting. But, its compact, sleek design makes it an ideal choice for smaller kitchens. It also grinds consistently, and unloading the grounds from the container and into a machine was mess-free, too.

Duronic Coffee Grinder CG250

Duronic Coffee Grinder CG250

Best budget electric grinder

Pros:

  • Budget price
  • Quiet
  • One-touch operation

Cons:

  • Very confusing manual

Star rating: 4/5

Wattage: 250W

Out of the box, this electric grinder is light and has just three parts – making it beyond simple to assemble. At only 21cm tall and weighing a whisper over 1kg, it’s also small and compact.

The downloadable manual is a bit confusing since it suggests selecting which grinding cup to use, but there is only one. Still, load the cup with beans and it will grind up to 75g, enough for 8 cups of coffee. The electric grinder starts instantly, and when you lift your hand, it stops immediately.

Grinding takes as long as needed to achieve the grind you want; the maximum we tried was three bursts for espresso, by which time both the blade and coffee were quite warm. Yet, despite this slight heating, there were no burnt notes or oiliness to the finished drink.

At a budget price, we admittedly didn’t have high expectations of this simple, straightforward machine. However, it delivered well and we were surprised by its ease of use and quietness.

Smeg CGF01 grinder

Smeg coffee grinder

Best high-end coffee grinder

Pros:

  • Comes in a range of colours
  • Attractive
  • Anti-slip feet

Cons:

  • Not ideal for small kitchens
  • Expensive

Wattage: 150W

This model is as smooth to operate as it is to look at. Secure the hopper and burr via an integrated ‘twist and lock’ system; choose your grinding level (there are 30 options) with a rounded stainless steel lever; and use an equally-tactile dial to select the desired number of cups.

Every element of this grinder clicks together so seamlessly, and it’s also surprisingly quiet for such a big machine. A stainless steel conical burr produced consistent grounds, there are anti-sleep feet to prevent movement, and the grinder comes in cream, black and pastel blue colours, so you can match it to your kitchen.

It was the largest machine we tested, so you’ll need worktop space for it. But it’s so pretty to look at that you’d want it on display anyway. Try as we might, we couldn’t find anything wrong with this grinder. So if you can afford the price tag, it’s definitely one to consider.

Sage Smart Grinder Pro

A coffee grinder against a white background

Best coffee grinder for precise results

Pros:

  • Ultra-precise results
  • Intelligent grinding
  • 60 settings

Cons:

  • Expensive

Wattage: 165W

Of all the grinders tested, this Sage model produced the most aromatic results. The canister can be sealed to keep coffee fresh and there were no issues with static. From grind size to grind time, everything is measured with the utmost precision and the grounds themselves are highly customisable (there are 60 unique settings in total).

Use the smooth, rounded dial to select which type of coffee you’d like and it will work out the corresponding grind time to decimal-point precision. We also loved the grind-time countdown and that the grounds canister slotted magnetically into place.

It has slimline and discreet appearance, with a matte black satin-feel finish and dots of stainless steel throughout. There’s a ring-pull on the lid which, though useful, made the model too tall to fit under our wall-mounted kitchen cupboards.

The best manual coffee grinders to buy

Kilner Coffee Grinder Set

Kilner Coffee Grinder Set

Star rating: 4.5/5

Best manual grinder

Pros:

  • Small footprint
  • Easy to use
  • No electricity needed

Cons:

  • Fiddly changing the grind

We loved the simplicity of this manual grinder. The set is small, with no leads, plugs, switches or buttons. The jar is just 500ml, while the grinder is 21cm high – perfect for even the smallest kitchens.

The adjustable burr grinder mechanism is ceramic and high-quality stainless steel. There’s a manual detailing how to adjust the grinding grade, a process we initially found a little fiddly. First, we had to remove the handle, hold the thread, change the cog for a fine or coarser grind, and then put it back together again. However, after a few times, it does become almost intuitive.

Each of the three grades produced well-textured, rich-flavoured coffee, each noticeably different, although all left a tad of sediment in the cup. That said, we were impressed by how easy and quick it is to use, and briskly turning the smooth handle and watching the coffee powder tip gently into the jar is a very satisfying process.

Porlex Tall II hand grinder

A coffee grinder against a white background

Best small hand grinder

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Compact
  • Easy to change grind

Cons:

  • Not ideal for large batches

In terms of slimline hand grinders, this ceramic Japanese model is a cut above anything else we tested. It’s light and strong with 12 grind settings, which are selected by twisting the accessible locking nut. Each ‘click’ alters the grind level by 37 microns, giving you great levels of control and precision.

It was easy to use and quick to produce reliable results – around a minute for even-textured grounds, which is just enough time to make grinding a pleasure rather than a chore. Plus, the Porlex Tall II is an improvement on the older model, the Porlex I, because it can grind around 1.3 times more coffee with the same number of rotations.

The capacity is small, which is worth bearing in mind if you want to make large batches of coffee. You’ll also need to dismantle the grinder to clean it, but a big plus of the ceramic element is that it’s never going to rust.

Available from:

Hario Mini Mill Plus

A coffee grinder against a white background

Best mid-range hand grinder

Pros:

  • Sturdy handle
  • Markings on cup
  • Compact

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Not great for large quantities

If you're working with a smaller budget, consider this pocket-sized Hario grinder. One of its best features is a handle that stays firmly in place – essential if you’re grinding horizontally and can’t afford any slips. A reinforced hexagonal adapter keeps things sturdy and, unlike other hand grinders we tested, it doesn’t take too much effort to operate.

The grounds chamber is etched with cup markings so you know how much to prepare, and you can change the grind size with the click of a tiny wheel. But because Hario’s model is so compact, you can only fit two cups-worth of grounds in it. This is fine if you’re the only coffee drinker in the house, but a touch too petite if you want to make multiple cups every day.

Other coffee grinders tried and tested

How do coffee grinders work?

The mechanisms used in coffee grinders fall into one of two categories: burr grinders (which grind coffee between a pair of revolving abrasive surfaces) and blade grinders, which use a rotating blade. Much is made of the difference between the two – blade types are usually the more affordable option, but burr grinders tend to grind more consistently, and therefore produce uniformly ground coffee.

Ensuring the grounds in a batch of coffee are similarly sized matters to coffee aficionados, because the size of the grounds will determine which brewing methods the coffee is well-suited for. Espresso machines require a very fine grind, cafetières are best filled with coarse granules, and filter coffee should be somewhere in-between. If ground coffee is a mixture of fine and coarse, it can’t be considered ideally prepared for any purpose

Which coffee grinder should I buy?

The best coffee grinders or mills can grind coffee beans to various specific levels of fineness, so the ground coffee can be used in different ways. Burr grinders achieve this versatility with mechanisms to adjust the distance between their grinding surfaces, while blade grinders tend to use the less effective method of a manual on/off control.

Another defining feature of a coffee grinder will be how it is powered: by electricity or by hand. Electric grinders have the advantages of power and convenience. They grind much faster (and at the expense of far less effort) than any manual grinder we’ve come across. Crucially, they're also more likely to grind consistently.

Grinding coffee by hand also has its benefits. Manual grinders tend to be small and easy to store. They don’t use electricity and are therefore more economical and eco-friendly.

How we test coffee grinders

Our reviews experts test coffee grinders based on a range of core and contributing criteria, including product design, the quality of coffee produced and ease-of-use factors likely to affect the experience of domestic users. The following are all covered in our reviews:

• How easy is it to clean?
• How easy is it to store?
• Is it sturdy?
• How large is its size/footprint?
• How noisy is the grinder?
• What’s the coffee bean capacity?
• Safety
• Ease of use
• Number of grind options
• Texture of the ground coffee – how do fine and coarse grinds compare to others?
• Design and aesthetics
• Any added functions?
• How much packaging is used?

A selection of coffee grinder machines

The grinders featured here were selected from a long list of coffee grinders tested by Good Food. They performed best against our list of criteria, relative to other grinders that were either of a similar type or sold at a similar price.

We tested the grinders by using them to grind several varieties of coffee bean, at levels of fineness to suit three of the most common brewing methods: cafetière, filter and espresso machine.

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If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability, please get in touch at goodfoodwebsite@immediate.co.uk.

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