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How we test coffee grinders

How we put coffee grinders to the test to help you buy the best.

close up of coffee grinder with beans
Last updated: 26 October 2021
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Checked for accuracy by our qualified fact-checkers and verifiers. Find out more about fact-checking at CHOICE.

If you can't start the day without your coffee and have invested in a fancy espresso machine for all your coffee needs at home, you should probably consider adding a coffee grinder to the family. Grinding your beans right before you make your coffee is the best way to extract their full flavour. Our experts are passionate about coffee and know how important it is to have the right coffee grinder. Our test helps you decide which one is right for you.

Our expert testers

Our experts in the small appliances lab have years of experience testing common household products including toasters, coffee machines, kettles, steam mops, vacuum cleaners and more.

How we choose what we test

With a range of products on the market, what makes us choose one coffee grinder to test over another? As with most of our product testing, our aim is to test the most popular models on the market and what you are most likely to see in the retailers. We survey manufacturers about their range of models, check market sales information and also look for any member requests to test specific models. From this information we put together a final list that goes to our buyers. They then head out to the retailers and purchase each product, just as a normal consumer would. We do this so we can be sure they are the same as any consumer would find them and not 'tweaked' for testing in any way.

How we test

Our small appliances experts put coffee grinders to the test by assessing their performance and ease of use.

Performance

We measure the fineness of grind by taking fresh, quality beans and adjusting each machine to produce a grind suitable for our semi-automatic ECM Giotto machine. We then make two cups of espresso and judge the crema quality and coffee strength.

Ease of use

We assess how easy it is to:

  • Set the timer
  • Adjust the controls
  • Remove coffee from the grinder
  • Clean the machine
We also calculate noise and other important features including weight, dimensions and specifications such as whether it uses a conical burr, flat burr or blade to grind the beans.

Test criteria explained

CHOICE Expert Rating

The CHOICE Expert Rating is made up of:

  • Performance score (50%)
  • Ease of use score (50%)

Our test lab

Our testing laboratory is up to date with the latest reference machines and calibrated measurement tools for our testers to bring you the right results.

We care about accuracy. See something that's not quite right in this article? Let us know or read more about fact-checking at CHOICE.