Best Coffee Grinder for Coarse Grinds – Top 5 Picks (2018)

I’ve had a lot of trouble finding the best coffee grinder for coarse grinds.

I got my french press thinking getting coffee ground for it would be a simple matter of stopping at my grocery store to pick up a simple burr grinder - as it turns out, though, not all grinders are made for a good, coarse grind.

Our Top Recommended

Best Manual Burr Coffee Grinder For Coarse Grinds

JavaPresse Manual Coffee Grinder, Conical Burr Mill, Brushed Stainless Steel

Best Electric Burr Coffee Grinder For Coarse Grinds

Capresso 560.04 Infinity Conical Burr Grinder, Brushed Silver

What do coarse grinds look like? When do you use them?

Extra coarse

Extra coarse

Coarse Grind

Coarse Grind

There are two grinds that fall into the “coarse” section (1). The first is an extra-coarse grind. These grinds are about the largest you’ll get out of your usual burr grinder.

An extra-coarse grind is about the size of flakey sea salt. You’ll use it in preparations that give you the smoothest flavor:

A coarse grind is a step below extra-coarse and is about the size of ground black pepper. The most common uses for a coarse grind include:

  • French press
  • Cupping
  • Percolators

Types of Coffee Grinders, Which is best for coarse grinds?

There are plenty of grinders out on the market, some of which are great for coarse coffee, and others which you’ll want to avoid.

1. Blade Grinders

The easiest, cheapest option.

Powered blade grinder

Pros

  • Inexpensive. These grinders are your average blender or food processor-type grinders. They’re plentiful, and if it breaks, easy to replace.

Cons

  • Inconsistent grind. You’re going to get the powder with these grinders. The beans can’t move out of the grinder once they’ve reached the consistency you want, and get pulverized.
  • Bad for single cups. You want to aim for at least 3oz of beans to really help weigh down and circulate everything in your grinder. Shake it while it’s grinding if you can, too. But too few beans will make grinding nearly impossible.
  • Risks burning beans. Anything over 20 seconds of grinding risks burning your grinds before they’ve touched the water. Make sure to experiment with your grinder before putting your good beans in it.

2. Conical Burr Grinders

The classic option.

Coffee burr grinder

Pros

  • Inexpensive. Prices range on burr grinders, but for a hand-cranked grinder, you shouldn’t be paying much more than a blade grinder.
  • Consistent particulate. Since coffee falls out of the grinder once it’s hit the correct size, you’re going to get a much more consistent particle range than a blade grinder.
  • Won’t burn beans. Really, the only time you risk burning beans with a grinder is if you’re using a blade grinder. Burr grinders simply don’t move fast enough to generate that kind of heat.

Cons

  • Labor intensive. If you’re going the less-expensive route, a hand-cranked burr grinder can take over a minute for a cup. I’ll usually sit down for five or ten minutes with mine if I’m making a larger batch of cold brew.
  • Expensive. If you want a less labor-intensive burr grinder, there are motorized ones but expect to pay more for the trouble.

3. Flat/Disc Burr Grinders.

For a fancy cup.

Flat Burr Grinders

Pros

  • Precision. These grinders offer the most precision in their grinds because of their mechanical setup. The blades impact the beans the least of the three grinders.

Cons

  • Price. These tend to be a bit less prevalent and a bit more expensive than the average burr grinder.

I had a lot of fun listening to Seattle Coffee Gear’s video on the difference between blade and burr grinders.

It’s informative, amusing, and most importantly, gives visual examples of why it’s so important to go burr instead of the blade when trying to make a coarser grind.

The Best Coffee Grinder for Coarse Grinds - 2018 Reviews

1. Rancilio HSD-ROC-SD Rocky Espresso Coffee Grinder

Rancilio HSD-ROC-SD Rocky Espresso Coffee Grinder

What I Like

  • 50mm entry-level commercial-grade burrs.
  • 166-watt quiet-drive motor quick work without the volume you find in some other grinders.
  • Hopper-based grind control with a wide range of options for the optimal coarse grind.
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    0.65lb capacity hopper for easy storage of coffee.
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    Flat burr grinder with great precision - we were genuinely surprised by the consistency.
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    All metal. You’re getting what you pay for; the design is solid, sturdy, and meant to last, with a small countertop footprint for the kind of grinder you’re getting.

What I Didn't Like

  • The structure of the hopper means that beans get stuck in there from time to time, especially in the screw recesses. Emptying and cleaning it regularly, or putting a bit of duct tape over the screw holes, addresses this issue.
  • Some grounds get stuck in the chute. If you’re not getting the doser version for espresso, you might end up with a few yesterday’s grounds in today’s filter.
  • The grind adjustment process can be a bit of a hassle, especially when going finer. You need to have the grinder running while you’re twisting the hopper. The booklet it comes with is very thorough, though.

2. Capresso 560.04 Infinity Conical Burr (Our Top Recommended)

Capresso 560.04 Infinity Conical Burr Grinder, Brushed Silver

What I Like

  • 100-watt conical burr grinder with commercial quality burrs at a relatively low price.
  • 8.5oz hopper with 4oz grounds collection container.
  • 16 grind settings, and a great grinder if you’re planning on using a single setting and sticking with it.
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    Small size

What I Didn't Like

  • The hopper will retain grounds of more oily roasts such as dark roasts, which requires disassembly to clean out.
  • Figuring out your first grind setting, or switching settings, means you’ll have to clean out the grinder and run some test grinds, more than other grinders.
  • The stainless steel base and burrs are easy enough to maintain, but the plastic parts like the hopper are more cheaply made and will need more care and attention.

3. Baratza 586 Virtuoso Coffee Grinder

Baratza Virtuoso - Conical Burr Coffee Grinder

What I Like

  • Professional-grade 40mm conical burrs that handle both coarse and fine grinds consistently.
  • Efficient motor with both electric and gear speed reducers that ensure beans are fed smoothly without overheating while still providing a solid power output.
  • 8oz hopper capacity and a grind speed that ranges from 1.5 to 2.4 grams per second, depending on the fineness of grind.
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    40 different grind settings to make it easy to find a good coarse grind for your needs. You’re not likely to see a lot of fine particles in your coarse grind.
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    Great customer service from a well-known, reputable brand.

What I Didn't Like

  • It’s noisy. While the volume has been reduced from previous models, it’s still a loud grinder for the price and type.
  • There are some issues with calibration right out of the box for some models. While it’s fixable with some TLC, these aren’t always pre-calibrated and tested for you.
  • Grounds get stuck in the chute and make for a more difficult clean-up. This is one of the most consistent complaints we’ve seen about the Baratza machine.

4. Delonghi Ariete Electric Coffee Grinder

Ariete -Delonghi Electric Coffee Grinder - Professional Heavy Duty Stainless Steel, Conical Burr - Ultra Fine Grind, Adjustable Cup Size, 15 Fine - Coarse Grind Size Settings

What I Like

  • Conical burr grinder with an attached hopper and collection bin for easy grinding.
  • 15-setting adjustment knob for easy selection between coarse and fine grinds, with mid-setting adjustment for more fine-tuning.
  • A great introductory grinder.
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    Much quieter than other grinders in its price range.

What I Didn't Like

  • Manual is very difficult to read and uninformative.
  • Container which catches grounds is too tight a fit for consistently clean collection and usage.
  • The first, default setting is a continuous grind instead of a timed grind, which requires use of the start/stop button to halt. The timer will reset to continuous after every timed grind.

5. Breville - The Smart Grinder

Breville BCG820BSSXL The Smart Grinder Pro Coffee Bean Grinder, Brushed Stainless Steel

What I Like

  • Stainless steel conical burrs with 60 grind settings for precision and optimal selection.
  • Digital interface allows for timed grinds up to 0.2 seconds of precision, and easy-to-access grounds container included.
  • 18oz removable hopper that allows for easy storage of beans between uses.
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    The digital screen will automatically select the correct dosage for cups of french press, and can automatically select the correct grind.
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    Very quiet for a grinder.

What I Didn't Like

  • More oily beans will clog the machine, requiring a full disassembly to clean and potential, ongoing problems.
  • While a coarse grind doesn’t necessitate the kind of precision espresso does, there are still some inconsistencies with the automatic dosing.
  • Product quality is inconsistent at best, and returns tend to be frequent, though customer service is great.
  • Exclamation Triangle
    Doesn’t handle coarser grinds too well - you’ll be getting a medium-coarse at best with the most consistency.

Conclusion

After looking at the best adjustable coffee grinders out there, my top pick really has to be the Capresso 560.04 Infinity.

It’s conical burr grinder, and it has 16 grind settings, perfect for coarse grinds. Besides, it's budget.

And, the size is small, great for countertop - that's why we think it's the best coffee grinder for coarse grinds.

My name is Kathy Gallo, Editor of Daily Cupo, a Coffee buff. The guide you find here is designed exactly for you, and it is our hope that you find it not only interesting but also actionable.

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