Can i grind coffee beans in a blender

Can I Grind Coffee Beans in a Blender?

If you like to grind your own coffee, you most likely have a burr coffee grinder at home. But I’ve often wondered what would happen if my grinder decides to take a break? Can you grind coffee beans in a blender? Surprisingly, you can.

In fact, you can use other items besides the blender. And they’re all found in your kitchen (that is if you’ve got them in the first place!). If the thought of grinding your coffee beans in any other way besides your grinder makes you cringe, think again!

Are you willing to give up on your early morning freshly ground coffee because your grinder has gone on the blink? I didn’t think so. And the prospect of going down to your local coffee shop for your breakfast brew doesn’t sound appealing when you’ve just woken up. So before you give up on your first brew of the day, read on to find out how to grind beans in a blender. And in many other ways too!


Why Use a Coffee Grinder?

If you’re serious about your coffee you’re either using a blade grinder or burr grinder in your kitchen. But why use a coffee grinder if you can use a blender? Let’s cover some basics about the perfect brew of coffee.

The quality of a grind determines the flavor and texture of your coffee brew. Roasted beans, if done properly, have been prepared at the right temperature. For an optimal brew, overheating your beans while grinding them could affect the flavor of your coffee.

Blade grinders create a lot of heat so you run the risk of overheating your beans using this method. And you’ll have an uneven grind. Which is why burr grinders are popular. They’ve been designed to grind your coffee beans for optimal flavor. The beans are not overheated during the grinding process and the grind is even.

What Other Grinding Tools Can You Use?

Your faithful burr coffee grinder has gone on the blink. You’re reading this article to find out how to grind your beans using other tools. Your first option is the blender on your kitchen countertop. If you don’t have a blender, don’t despair. Other options are available and I’ll take you through them. But first, let’s talk about using the blender.

Grinding Coffee Beans With A Blender

Most kitchens have this appliance. Blenders are used for just about anything that needs to be blended – from your smoothies to soups. But coffee beans? Similar to your blade grinders, blenders use a blade system to break down food. To grind your coffee beans in the blender requires simple techniques to get as close as you can to a consistent grind.

The reason why coffee connoisseurs are fussy about the perfect grind is that the beans contain natural oils. An experienced coffee roaster knows how to roast beans at the right temperature to get the most out of the natural oils. Coffee beans ground to the perfect consistency means the oils and flavor will be extracted to produce a smoother, flavorful coffee brew.

Using some simple techniques when grinding beans in a blender will help to produce a consistent grind. It’s all in the quantity and the timing. Remember, you don’t want to overheat the beans while using the blender. This will result in a bitter-tasting coffee.

Grinding beans with a blender need to be done using small quantities of beans at a time. If you use too many beans in a blender, you’ll need to run the blender longer. This will result in higher temperatures and the beans will start to overheat.

Measure out 1/4 cup of coffee beans. Toss them into your blender. If your blender has a pulsing option use it. Or simply do it yourself using medium speed. The pulsing action prevents heat from building up. And you’ll be able to gauge the consistency of the grind. As you won’t be running the blender at high speed for a long time, your grind will not be fine. Instead, expect a coarser grind.

Repeat this method until you’ve got enough grinds to make a brew of coffee. Don’t be tempted to rush the process unless you want a bitter coffee with sediment. Take it slowly and consistently.

Coarse grind coffee can be used in a French press or a drip coffee maker. And if you’re a fan of cold-brew coffee this grind is perfect.

The Mortar and Pestle Method

This method requires a bit of manual labor but it’s worthwhile if you’re craving your own blend of coffee. I

Again, don’t be tempted to rush this process. If you put too many beans in the mortar you won’t be able to produce a fine grind – unless you plan on spending the whole day mashing away at the coffee beans!

Place a small number of coffee beans into the mortar. A small handful is sufficient. Holding the mortar in one hand, use the pestle to grind the beans. A twisting motion is the most comfortable movement to use and it’ll grind the beans in a consistent manner. You’ll need to use a bit of force here.

Once the beans are crushed into smaller pieces, use a rolling motion with the pestle. Roll the beans around the mortar until your grind is of the consistency you want. This method can produce a medium to fine grind with a bit of patience.

The Hammer and Rolling Pin Methods

Now, the hammer and rolling pins are two tools most people have in their homes. So if the blender has also gone on the blink and the mortar & pestle is something you don’t own, the hammer and rolling pins are your other options.

  • The hammer: You’re grinding the coffee beans not smashing them to pieces so when using the hammer take it easy. You’ll need a large plastic bag, parchment paper, or a dishtowel & a large chopping board. Place a few handfuls of coffee beans into the bag (or wrap up in the paper or dishcloth). Place the bag flat on the chopping board and with gentle force, press the hammer down onto the beans. Crush the beans by moving the hammerhead in a sideways action. Do this until you have the right texture. This method gives you a coarse to medium grind depending on how long you use the hammer. A mallet works just as well. Place the dishcloth over the plastic bag to give it extra protection when using the mallet.
  • The rolling pin: You can use a wine bottle here if you can’t find the rolling pin. You’ll also need a plastic bag, parchment paper, or a dishtowel. And the large chopping board. Place some coffee beans in the bag, lay it flat on the chopping board, and start rolling. Using a backward and forward motion over the beans, you’ll be able to crush the beans until you reach the consistency you want. You’ll need to apply gentle pressure while rolling. When you use a rolling pin you’ll be able to get a fine grind but it’ll take time.

Can I Use My Bullet Blender to Grind Coffee?

This is a question I hear often when coffee lovers are talking about grinding coffee. I did some research and the answer is yes. But before you rush into using your bullet blender take note of the following:

  • Use the flat blade. This is the best blade for grinding things like…coffee beans! The cross blade is used for chopping up vegetables and fruit. So before starting to grind the coffee, make sure the right blade is in place.
  • Measure out the coffee beans and pour them into the grinding cup. Place the cup onto the base of the blender. With pulsing motions, push the grinding cup down. Don’t hold the cup down constantly. As with the blender, the pulsing motions will keep the temperature down and the beans will not overheat. It’ll also prevent the motor from burning out.
  • Keep pressing the cup until the coffee beans are at the consistency you want – the more you press, the finer the grind.
  • Using a blender this way gives you the option of going from coarse to medium to fine grinds.
  • Pour the grinds out of the grinding cup, put them in your coffee maker, let it brew before enjoying your first cup of coffee of the day.
  • Word of caution: Read the manual first before using your bullet blender. This will save you from doing any damage to your blender.


Which Method for the Best Coffee?

Each method has its pros and cons. Using a blender gives you a coarse to medium grind which works well in a drip coffee maker or the French Press. There’s always the danger of overheating the beans using the blender so remember, be patient and use pulsing motions to avoid this from happening.

The mortar and pestle, hammer, and rolling pin methods take a bit of elbow grease. This could be heavy going first thing in the morning! You’ll also battle to get a fine grind unless you go at it for a long time which again is not ideal when you’ve just woken up. But, these offer a simple solution to grinding coffee beans. Most of us will have one or all of these tools in our homes. And it’s cheaper than buying another coffee grinder.

The bullet blender is quick and easy. Depending on how long you grind, you can choose whether to have coarse, medium, or fine grind. If espresso is your brew, the fine grind works well and you can do it with a bullet blender. However, you could end up going too far and ending up with very fine coffee sticking together.

Final Thoughts

The coffee grinder is the ultimate machine for a perfect coffee brew. They’ve been designed precisely for that reason. But when the day comes and your grinder won’t work, other methods are available. You can grind coffee beans in a blender. With a bit of patience, you’ll still get to enjoy a cup of coffee.