If you have just bought a pack of specialty coffee beans, and want to brew it to your liking but don't have a coffee grinder readily accessible, it can feel like a roadblock has been reached in your brewing journey.


However, by incorporating a few simple hacks that we have shared below, you can use a common household mixer grinder (mixie), or a spice jar/blade grinder, to grind your coffee to quite a satisfying extent.


The Hacks: 

  • If you are using a mixie, try and use the smallest jar available to grind your beans. This would typically be a stainless steel spice jar or a chutney jar that is the smallest of the three jar fixtures that come with your mixie.
  • When you choose the speed setting while you grind, use the pulse setting instead of grinding it continuously.
  • Stop after 5 seconds of pulsing, shake the jar and restart. This allows you to ensure that all the beans come in contact with the blade, and you will be left with more uniformly ground coffee powder as a result.
  • If you are using a blade grinder or spice jar, grind in short pulses instead of pressing the button and letting it run Also try and shake the grinder as you press the button as this will allow all the coffee grounds to mix up and grind more evenly.
  • Once you reach the coarseness or fineness you desire (and this will depend on the brewing method you choose), you can also pass the grounds through a sieve. This will ensure that any chunky, large pieces of the bean that haven’t been ground enough get left behind, and you have relatively more uniform grounds to use for your brew.


For those of us who are just getting started on our home brewing journeys, investing immediately in a burr grinders may not always be accessible. And in this case, we still believe that the great joy of buying whole beans and ritually grinding them each morning to brew your cup can be tapped into with these hacks.

Grind Uniformity and Size - mixie vs burr grinders made for coffee:

The fundamental difference between a mixie or spice jar and burr grinders that are specially designed for coffee is that the burr grinder allows you to control grind size and ensures that you have uniformly ground coffee.

What this means for the coffee you finally brew is that the uniformly ground coffee powder allows you to extract the coffee uniformly. Having uneven grounds can lead to a cup that is either over-extracted and thus too bitter, or a cup that is under-extracted and thus lacking in flavour.


Investing in a Coffee Grinder:

As brewers, we are always striving towards the ideal of uniform extraction for the sweetness, perfect acidity and complex flavours it lets us savour. In this pursuit, the pleasures of a burr grinder are infinite! If you are a coffee enthusiast eager to invest in your brewing experience, buying a coffee grinder could be a great place to begin.

You will find that coffee grinders are of two kinds- automatic and manual/hand grinders. Hand grinders are easily portable and typically more affordable, but will also take more manual effort and muscle work on your part! Whereas, if you grind larger quantities, and would like more grind settings, you could consider the automatic grinders.


Our Recommendations:

Based on the grinders available in India, here are some options we would recommend: Hario Mini Mill Hand grinder, Timemore Chestnut C2 Hand Grinder Budan Electric Espresso Grinder Baratza Encore ESP


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