Last Updated on February 15, 2023 by Marie Cooper
If you’re searching for the best manual coffee grinders, you must have explored your options and decided on manual over electric, and that’s fine if a manual grinder is capable of fulfilling all your grinding needs. I prefer the electric burr grinders, though, and don’t mind the whirring motor noise, but that’s just me. I also use manual ones for their portability.
Anyways, in this article, you’ll discover the best manual models to buy that have been carefully picked through tons of research and testing.
There’s nothing quite like the taste of coffee made from freshly-ground beans in the morning. Grinding your own coffee beans allows you to enjoy better-tasting and more flavorful coffee, since pre-ground coffee begins to lose its freshness as soon as it is made and it loses even more as you open the bag each time you need to brew another cup.
Pre-ground coffee can also contain fillers and additives, and they’re made with low quality beans, which results in low quality brews. Some high-quality ones are made from excellent beans, but it’s more expensive to buy these than to buy top-quality beans and grind them yourself.
Best Manual Coffee Grinders in 2023
Timemore Chestnut C2 Hand Grinder
Pros: Lightweight, adjustable grind size (fine to coarse), easy to clean, portable, even and consistent grinds, feels nice to hold.
Cons: Small capacity, which is common among hand grinders; cleaning brush isn’t durable.
The Timemore Chestnut C2 is featured here due to its high-quality construction, excellent grinding results, and high ratings from buyers. This manual grinder is perfect for use at home, and you can take it with you wherever you go thanks to its portability.
This product features sharp, stainless-steel burrs for consistent grinds and an easy-to-grasp handle that keeps turning even when you let go, which aids effortless and continuous grinding. You can choose between 36 levels of fineness to coarseness with the adjustment nut located on the bottom of the grinder.
I like the nice checkered pattern design which not only makes gripping while grinding easier, but also gives the grinder an exquisite look so it looks great on your countertop if you decide to store it there — and it won’t take up a lot of counter space due to its small footprint.
Another neat feature of the Timemore Chestnut C2 is the inclusion of a cleaning brush for easy cleaning. Speaking of cleaning, you don’t need to wash the grinder with water or disassemble it — you just need to brush out the bottom with the included brush and it’s ready for another grinding session.
83% of Amazon buyers rated the Timemore Chestnut C2 5/5 stars for its consistency and ease of use. Like anything else, there are some cons present in this product that were mentioned by a much smaller percentage of buyers. One downside to this product is that with its small, compact size comes a smaller capacity. This means grinding a large batch of coffee may be more time-consuming than if a larger grinder was used, but this is true for other manual hand grinders.
All in all, this is a great travel companion and ideal for camping and other outdoor activities where a portable grinder is your only option for grinding coffee.
Heihox Hand Coffee Grinder
Pros: Compact, portable, adjustable grinding, ergonomic handle, one-year warranty and customer support.
Cons: A bit heavy for its size.
Like the Timemore, this Heihox product is also a burr grinder, featuring efficient stainless-steel burrs that ensure you get uniform grounds every time. With its 24 clicks grind selector, you are in full control of the coarseness of your coffee grounds, whether you’re grinding for espresso, French Press, cold brew, or any other brewing method. It takes only 6-12 clicks to grind for espresso and about 24 to grind for French Press.
The Heihox is also very easy to disassemble, which makes cleaning all of its parts a breeze, and its compact design makes it perfect for home brewing and for travelling, hiking, and camping.
I like how the handle is ergonomic and noiseless when it’s turned, and how you can disassemble the product with a simple twist. Cleaning is done with a small brush, which is included in the package, along with a drawstring bag for easy storage and traveling.
Each Heihox grinder must pass a professional-grade inspection and is tested to make sure it’s 5 times as durable as a blade grinder before it’s sold, and the company offers a one-year warranty with customer support to buyers as well, so this is a product you can purchase with complete confidence.
Just like the Timemore, the Heihox has been rated 5/5 stars by 83% of buyers on Amazon, and that’s a positive indication for prospective customers. However, it’s not completely free of criticism. One flaw buyers mentioned is that it’s a bit heavy for its size, so it’ll take some getting used to if your previous model was lighter.
1Zpresso JX-PRO Manual Coffee Grinder
Pros: 40-step and 200 micro steps for adjusting grind size, one-year warranty, easy to clean with no recalibrating needed, portable, large capacity.
The third manual coffee grinder I’m recommending is the 1Zpresso JX-PRO. This grinder has high-quality stainless steel stability burrs that produce consistent grinding results. The burrs are sturdy and work with a central shaft, keeping the burr right in place and eliminating wobbliness. It features a 40-step fineness adjustment dial too, which gives you complete control over the fineness or coarseness of your grounds.
The 1Zpresso JX-PRO is an exceptional hand grinder with a premium feel to it. Some hand grinders struggle with producing grounds fine enough for espresso, but not this one. This one can produce perfect, fine grounds for the perfect espresso shot because it offers you over 200 stepped settings in 40 clicks, enabling you to make fine adjustments to your grind settings. It’s well built too, so its durability is not in question.
Another fantastic feature of the 1Zpresso JX-Pro is its ease of cleaning. You won’t need any tool other than the brush it comes with to clean it, and cleaning it is an easy task. Taking it apart is also easy and you won’t have to recalibrate it after assembling it.
Though it’s an unlikely occurrence, if you ever have an issue with your 1Zpresso JX-PRO, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that that the company offers a one-year limited warranty to buyers, and great customer support. On Amazon, 89% of buyers rated this product 5/5 stars. Reviewers rave about its high-quality burrs and build, consistent and fast grinding speed, portability, affordability, and ease of cleaning.
This product is almost perfect as you’ll be hard-pressed to find complaints about it. This is a relatively expensive product though, and that might be a disadvantage to some. Other than that, this is a near-perfect grinder.
West Coast Chef Manual Coffee Grinder
Pros: Affordable, steel burr, strong aluminum alloy exterior, grinds fast, beautiful wood materials, full refund available if you’re not satisfied.
Cons: Small bits of coffee might escape while grinding.
At first glance, this manual grinder is gorgeous. It has an aluminum exterior which gives it that sturdiness you want from your grinder without adding a considerable amount of weight to it. This means it’s not too light and not too heavy, while being sturdy at the same time. But it’s not just its exterior that is made of high-quality materials — its burrs are made of steel, so you won’t ever have to worry about them breaking, like some ceramic burrs do.
This West Coast grinder is portable, compact, and precise. To adjust your grind size, you simply turn the adjustment dial to the setting you want. There are settings for fine, medium, and coarse grind sizes, with micro steps in between for precise size selection. The grounds are even, and it grinds well for espresso, pour-over, and more.
When it’s time to clean it, you won’t need to take it apart. You’ll find a brush included with your purchase that you can use to brush coffee residue off the grinder and prepare it for your next use. However, if you feel like disassembling it to give it a thorough clean, that’s easy to do. The use of wood makes this grinder absolutely beautiful compared to the competition. The cleaning brush is made of beautiful wood material, and so is the crank’s handle.
On Amazon, 78% of buyers rated this product 5/5 stars, which speaks to its quality. West Coast is so confident about the quality of their product that they are willing to offer a full refund to buyers who are not completely blown away by the quality of this product.
JavaPresse Manual Coffee Bean Grinder
Pros: 18 manual grind settings, ceramic burr for consistent grinds, affordable, quiet.
Cons: It’s slow, so it takes more time to complete a grinding task compared to the other products featured here.
The JavaPresse hand grinder is the cheapest one featured here, and it’s the only one that comes with ceramic burrs, but that doesn’t mean it’s a low-quality product. That said, it’s not as good as the ones featured above and you should only consider this one if your budget is around $35.
The ceramic burrs on this product are high quality burrs, and they product consistent grounds for most brewing methods, including espresso. Burrs are always the preferred choice for espresso, so if you’ve been using a blade grinder for your espresso, you’ll notice a significant difference in the taste of your coffee if you switch to this one. The burrs are dual-plated and undergo quality inspections before they are installed. JavaPresse claims that these patented ceramic burrs last 5 times as long as steel ones.
This product is almost noiseless — its crank is designed in such a way that it rotates quietly, and the absence of noise is an attribute you want from a hand grinder since that’s one of the reasons people opt for a hand grinder instead of an electric one.
Overall, this is a great grinder for the price, but don’t expect it to perform as well as the other options above. It’s cheap and it’s relatively slow, but the grind quality is good for the amount you pay.
What Manual Grinder is Right for Me?
If you want the highest quality one and can afford it, get the 1Zpresso JX-PRO. It also has the largest capacity of all the models I recommend, which means you’ll be doing more grinding in less time. Its fast grinding speed also helps you save time, and you’ll appreciate that more when you find yourself in situations where time is of the essence.
If you have a lower budget, pick any of the other 3 options aside from the JavaPresse. They’re all within the same price range and offer similar features and grind quality. If you’re looking for something that is very cheap but reliable enough for regular coffee grinding, buy the JavaPresse.
What to Look For in a Manual Coffee Grinder
Not all coffee grinders are worth the money. The ones that are should be able to produce consistent grounds, so you don’t have to drink over or under-extracted coffee, offer you easy-to-adjust grind settings that are coarse or fine enough for your brewing methods, and be capable of producing extra-fine grounds for brewing espresso and Turkish coffee. Low quality grinders are more likely to struggle with making fine grounds for espresso.
Other factors to consider are price, capacity, and stepped settings. Pick a grinder that offers you the best quality to price ratio, with a large enough capacity so you won’t have to do tons of grinding, and stepped settings if you change or switch between brewing methods regularly.
All the products I recommend here have perfect price to quality ratios, so you’ll be getting the best performance and features that a grinder in their price range can possibly offer you if you buy one of these 5 products. Check them out and let me know if you have any questions.