If you want your coffee to taste as good as it possibly can every time you set out to brew it then there’s one simple thing you can do to ensure this. You don’t need a fancy coffee maker or the most expensive coffee on the market. All you need are fresh, whole beans and a coffee grinder.
As soon as the coffee has been ground up it starts to lose a lot of its fresh flavor and aroma, even if you store it correctly. The only way to ensure the freshest and fullest flavor possible is to get yourself a decent coffee grinder and grind up a fresh batch of beans for every brew.
Hand-powered coffee grinders are a great starter option for coffee newbies as they are inexpensive to buy but produce coffee that’s just as consistent as electric burr grinders. They do require a little more manpower but have the added benefit of being completely portable so they can go anywhere with you.
To help you out, here are ten of the best hand coffee grinders, reviewed so you can choose the one that best suits your needs. Have a browse and if you like the look of any of these items, click ‘Price & Reviews’ to check the current price on Amazon.
Now let’s get started with our top pick today, the Manual Coffeebean Grinder by Javapresse.
Best Manual Coffee Grinders Reviewed
- 1. Top Pick – Manual Coffee Bean Grinder by JavaPresse
- 2. Runner Up – Hario Skerton Pro Ceramic Coffee Mill
- 3. Best Travel Companion – VSSL JAVA Manual Hand Coffee Grinder
- 4. Budget Option – Kitcoff Manual Coffee Grinder
- 5. Best for One Cup Use – Porlex Mini Stainless Steel Coffee Grinder
- 6. Fantastic for French Press – Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Mill
- 7. Best For Cold Brew – Lido 3 Manual Coffee Grinder
- 8. Top for Turkish Coffee/Excellent for Espresso – Porlex Stainless Steel Coffee Grinder
- 9. Perfect for Pour Over – 1Zpresso JX Manual Coffee Grinder
- 10. Awesome For Aeropress – TIMEMORE Manual Coffee Grinder
1. Top Pick – Manual Coffee Bean Grinder by JavaPresse
- 18 Grind Settings
- Ceramic Burrs
- Good Consistent Grind
- Very Slow
The top pick today has to be Javapresse with this ceramic burr coffee grinder. It has 18 grind adjustment settings so is perfect for espresso up to the french press and every kind of coffee maker in-between.
It’s a high-quality build with a comfortable hand crank mechanism that makes it pretty effortless to turn. It does take a long time to create a fine grind consistency but this is typical for most hand grinders.
The ceramic burrs are tough enough to tackle whole beans with ease and the little viewer window means you can easily see when your coffee is ready. Overall, this is a good option for ease of use, and functionality, alongside the compact design, which means it can go anywhere with you.
2. Runner Up – Hario Skerton Pro Ceramic Coffee Mill
- Ceramic Conical Burrs
- 100g Capacity
- Plastic Components Prone to Wear and Tear
Our runner-up is a great option if you want your cup of coffee fast and you want a larger volume. The hopper can hold up to 100g of beans so that’s enough to brew 1.5 liters of coffee!
It’s designed ergonomically, with a rubber, anti-slip base, and comfortable handle. It works faster than the average coffee mill so you won’t be waiting hours for your coffee to be ready. The ceramic burrs are durable but the plastic parts of this device are prone to wear and tear so that’s worth considering.
The beans are ground into a heat-proof glass bowl that’s easy to keep clean so no risk of stale odors transferring into your ground coffee. It has a strong, sturdy grind shaft but the grind consistency isn’t as good as our top choice.
3. Best Travel Companion – VSSL JAVA Manual Hand Coffee Grinder
- Ultra Durable
- 50 Grind Settings
- Stainless Steel Burrs
- A Little Awkward to Use
For anyone who prioritizes travel or outdoor adventures, you need a coffee grinder that’s as durable and compact as possible. The VSSL Java is designed with outdoor enthusiasts in mind. The build quality is extremely tough and the range of grind settings is huge so you can use it with any brew method from a Moka pot to a french press.
The handle folds out and has a magnetic attachment that makes it comfortable to grip. Despite this, it is a little awkward to use but this is mainly due to its compact size.
A quick-release top makes it easy to add your beans and a handy carabiner adds to the portability of this.
4. Budget Option – Kitcoff Manual Coffee Grinder
- Ceramic Burrs
- Ergonomic Grip
- Travel Pouch Included
Coffee brewing doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg and if you’re on a tight budget then this is the coffee grinder for you. It has 18 click settings so works well with any homebrewer although you may have to grind your coffee in batches if you need a very large volume.
It’s ergonomic to hold and doesn’t wobble around so is pretty user-friendly. It even comes with a little travel bag so is easy to transport and a cleaning brush is provided to help clean between the burrs.
It’s fairly loud compared to other hand grinders but despite this, it’s nowhere near as loud as an electric one. Overall it works really well as a budget option and is suitable for most kinds of coffee drinkers.
5. Best for One Cup Use – Porlex Mini Stainless Steel Coffee Grinder
- Ceramic Burrs
- Fine Grind to Coarse Grind
- Stainless Steel Body
- 20g Capacity
If you’re looking for a compact option that’s perfect for a single coffee lover then this mini coffee grinder is everything you need. It’s made of durable stainless steel that’s designed to be static-free so no grounds are scattered over the countertop.
The burrs are ceramic so alongside the steel body there are no parts in this device that will easily wear out. Overall it’s a very hardy design that works well for specialty coffee fine grinds to coarser immersion brew methods.
Coffee Grinder Buyers Guide
Why Avoid Blade Grinders
Coffee grinders typically come in two forms. Burr grinders and blade grinders. Burr grinders work with a set of cog-like burrs set at variable distances that crush and chop up the coffee beans into uniform grounds.
Blade grinders work a bit more like a food processor where two spinning blades roughly and randomly chop the coffee beans into an assortment of sizes. This means you have no control over the grind size and the coffee brewed will be a mixture of under and over-extracted.
Selecting the Correct Grind Size
When you set out to brew coffee, it’s really important to use the correct grind setting for your chosen brew method. If you choose a grind that’s too coarse then the coffee will taste thin, weak, and downright unappealing. If you choose a grind that’s too fine then your coffee will be bitter.
Sign up for our newsletter and you get a coffee cheat sheet with a grind size chart for all brew methods included and it’s free!
Consider the Functionality
Consider your chosen brew method, how you brew coffee, where you brew coffee, and how often you brew it. Handground coffee is perfect for out and about when you need something portable and maybe you don’t have a power supply. It’s perfect for smaller batches and can be quite therapeutic and rewarding to do.
It’s not the best for very large batches of coffee or if you plan to brew lots of shots of espresso, one after the other. It takes time and patience to use one of these grinders so for larger batches I’d recommend an electric option.
How Many Grams of Coffee Can it Hold?
Every grinder is a little different in regards to how much coffee it can accommodate in one go. It is possible to grind some beans, place them in a container and then reload the hopper but this can get a bit tedious every day. It’s worth considering how many grams of coffee you usually use and then trying to find a grinder that can produce this amount in one go.
Manual Vs Electric Grinders
Manual grinders are a great portable option for travel, work, hiking, and camping. They don’t require power so you can use them anywhere. They are a lot quieter compared to electric ones so good for shared accommodation if you don’t want to wake the whole house when you’re getting ready for work.
They always maintain a cool grind so never run the risk of heating up and burning your beans. They are more compact to store in a small or minimal kitchen as they can tuck away really easily and they are cheaper to buy so are a great first option if you’re new to the world of coffee.
Electric grinders are best for larger quantities of coffee, especially for commercial use. They are good if you want your coffee ground up fast and with little effort from you. They can be a better choice for finer grinds as these can take a long time with a hand grinder.
In the end, the best choice of grinder is the one you find easiest to use and that suits your chosen brew method.
Which hand coffee grinder is best?
The Javapresse ceramic burr coffee grinder is the best all-rounder for any kind of brew method. It’s easy to use, provides a consistent grind, and is very portable.
Are hand grinders good for espresso?
Espresso is a tricky one to do with a hand coffee grinder. Due to the fact it needs such a fine grind, this can be slow work. Luckily, espresso doesn’t need a huge amount of coffee per brew so it is possible with a hand grinder. It’s best to select one that’s got a large choice of grind settings so you can tweak it to get a perfect consistency.
What are the benefits of a hand coffee grinder?
They are quiet to use, cheap to buy and can give you a lot of control over your coffee grind. They are portable and don’t require power so they can be used anywhere.
Is it worth it to buy a hand coffee grinder?
These kinds of coffee grinders are relatively inexpensive to buy compared to electric ones. They do just as good a job but do require a little elbow grease from you. If you want the delicious taste of freshly ground coffee without breaking the bank then it’s absolutely worth it to buy a hand coffee grinder.
Best Manual Coffee Grinders for Each Brew Method
6. Fantastic for French Press – Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Mill
- Stainless Steel Burrs
- Beech Wood Housing
- Traditional Lap Mill
- Difficult to Hold Steady
French press coffee grounds need to be a very coarse grind size to get the fullest flavor but avoid bitterness. This Zassenhaus coffee mill has a conical burr grinding mechanism that ensures a controlled, even grind.
It’s a traditional lap mill so you hold it steady by placing the main body of the device between your thighs and twisting the handle. Some people find this easy enough but some people find it difficult to hold steady.
This is a very attractive grinder with the beech wood housing and it’s the perfect companion for making great coffee in your french press.
7. Best For Cold Brew – Lido 3 Manual Coffee Grinder
Brand: Orphan Espresso
- Holds up to 70g of Coffee Beans
- Steel Burrs
- Suitable for French Press to Espresso
- Issues with the Handle
The Lido 3 is an extremely tough little workhorse that can easily grind coffee to a very coarse consistency that’s ideal for cold brew. It’s weighty to hold and does take a bit of elbow grease to grind a large number of beans and the hopper can easily hold up to 70g of coffee. This means you don’t have to stop and start and can easily grind enough coffee for a large batch of cold brew in one go.
The handle has a minor issue where it doesn’t lock in position very well so some people find this extremely frustrating when using this grinder. The main reason for this is usually user error so make sure you take your time and practice and this shouldn’t be an issue for you.
8. Top for Turkish Coffee/ Excellent for Espresso – Porlex Stainless Steel Coffee Grinder
- Ceramic Conical Burrs
- Stainless Steel Housing
- Only Holds 30g of Coffee
This little grinder by Porlex is designed in the perfect way that makes it usable for fine-grind coffee brewing. The handle is easy to turn so you won’t need to go to the gym before grinding coffee that’s an ultra-fine powder.
It has durable, stainless steel housing and the ceramic burrs mean it can easily handle daily use and always provides a consistent grind. The burrs are prone to breaking if there happen to be any small rocks in your coffee beans. The advice here is if you feel resistance, don’t push through it. Stop, open it up and check for anything solid in the burrs. Luckily, the burrs are replaceable so if you do hit any impurities in your beans then you don’t have to buy a whole new device.
This one only holds 30g of coffee so it’s not suitable for larger batches of coffee. It can easily hold enough for a double shot of espresso or a 12-ounce cup of Turkish coffee.
9. Perfect for Pour Over – 1Zpresso JX Manual Coffee Grinder
- Highly Adjustable
- 35g Capacity
- Stainless Steel Burr
- Small Amount of Static
This little guy is the perfect replacement for pre-ground coffee and will turn you into a barista before you know it. I love that it has a soft grip sleeve so it’s really comfortable to hold and the wooden handle makes it smooth and comfortable to turn.
It’s highly adjustable with over 40 individual clicks but it is reported that it’s not ideal for very fine grind ie espresso. Stainless steel burrs are durable and easy to clean but the device is prone to a small build-up of static which can be a bit annoying. You can help mitigate this by discharging it with a teaspoon when the grinding is finished.
It all comes apart for easy cleaning and there’s a brush provided to get in-between the burrs. Overall the reviews are pretty unanimous that this grinder performs really well and it makes the perfect choice for medium-coarse grind brew methods.
10. Awesome For Aeropress – TIMEMORE Manual Coffee Grinder
- Stainless Steel Burrs
- Cleaning Brush and Travel Bag Included
- Fast and Smooth to Use
- Small Capacity
For your Aeropress, Moka Pot, or any other brew method that requires a medium-fine grind, we have the perfect hand grinder for you. This one has a knurled grip which is really useful to avoid it slipping as you use it.
Stainless steel burrs are durable and easy to set to any grind you require. The handle is smooth, easy to use, and also detachable so this makes this device even more compact. It comes with a little carry bag as well so you can take it anywhere with you.
Overall, this is an easy-to-use, durable option that serves many purposes. It’s awesome for Aeropress but not limited to this!
So that’s it for hand coffee grinders. These little devices are the perfect addition to your coffee brewing setup. They are inexpensive to buy and require little expertise to use. They will fit into any kitchen and make a perfect travel companion as well. If you want the wonderful taste of freshly ground coffee but you don’t want to break the bank then get yourself a hand coffee grinder. You won’t regret it!