Drinking a morning cup of coffee is how many people around the world start their busy days. However, brewing a fresh cup of java requires you to grind coffee beans just before brewing. Freshly ground coffee makes tastier coffee than overstayed pre-ground coffee.
Grinding coffee requires using a burr coffee grinder or blade grinder. But what if your grinder decides to break down? Will you stay without brewing coffee until you replace your broken grinder? And what if there is no power and your grinder uses electricity? Fortunately, there are several alternative ways of grinding coffee beans. In this article, we will show you how to grind coffee beans without grinder.
1. Use a mortar and pestle
One of the easiest ways of grinding coffee beans without a grinder is to use a mortar and pestle. In this case, add about 5 to 10 grams (1 to 2 tablespoons) of coffee beans into a mortar. Next, cover the mortar with one of your hands to prevent the coffee beans from jumping out as you crush them.
Use your free hand to swirl the pestle all around the inside of the mortar to crush and mash the coffee beans. After a few seconds, hammer the coffee beans vertically to crush them completely. Then get back to swirling. Continue swirling and hammering the beans until they are crushed to the preferred consistency.
With this method, only add a few beans at a time for the best results in terms of consistency. Once you are done crushing the beans, you will get coarse to super fine coffee grind size depending on the length of time and intensity of crushing them.
2. Use a rolling pin
You can also grind coffee beans with the help of a rolling pin. With this method, start by measuring enough coffee beans. Next, add them into a plastic freezer bag. Preferably, use a thick freezer bag for the best results. If you do not have a freezer bag, place the coffee beans in one layer between several sheets of parchment paper.
Seal the freezer bag completely. Place the bag on a flat, smooth surface. Shake the coffee beans to ensure they lie on one layer. Take a rolling pin and place it on the bag. Roll the pin gently over the beans to crack them.
Upon cracking them, apply more pressure on the pin while rolling it back and forth to crush them. Continue crushing them until you get the desired grind size. With this method, you will get medium fine to fine coffee grounds.
3. Grind coffee beans with a food processor
Alternatively, you can use your food processor as a coffee grinder. In this case, you will add coffee beans to your food processor. Run the food processor in pulses of 10 to 20 seconds. Then check whether you like the consistency of the ground coffee. If not, continue grinding them in short pulses until you get the preferred consistency.
With a food processor, you will get an uneven and coarse grind size. Regardless, it can save the situation on a rainy day. Once you are done grinding, disassemble the food processor and wash it. If not, it will retain any remnant coffee smell that will end up in your food.
4. Blending coffee beans
Another alternative way on how to grind coffee beans without grinder is to blend them with a blender. To do this, put some coffee beans into the pitcher of your blender. Turn on the blender and blend the beans using pulse mode for approximately 10 seconds. Continue blending in short pulses until you get the preferred consistency.
Just like with a food processor, you will neither get a fine nor a consistent grind. You can only get a coarse grind. Also, it is important to grind the beans in short bursts. That way, the blades will not heat up as they can cook the beans and destroy their rich flavor. Once done grinding, empty the grounds and wash the pitcher thoroughly to remove any remnant coffee aroma.
5. Grind with an immersion blender
You can also use an immersion blender to grind roasted coffee beans. Simply put coffee beans into a narrow but tall container. Insert an immersion blender into the container. Next, cover the top of the container with one of your hands to prevent the beans from flying out when blending.
Blend the beans for about 20 to 30 seconds. Proceed to check whether they have attained the preferred grind. Continue processing them in short spurts of about 10 seconds each until they attain the grind size you want. You will get a coarse grind with this method. Remember to wash the blender to remove any remnant coffee scent and oils.
6. Try a hand mincer
Your hand mincer can be useful when your coffee grinder malfunctions. Besides making pasta and mincing meat, you can use it to grind coffee beans. Just put enough beans into the grinder. Rotate the crank clockwise to crush and grind the beans. You can grind them finer by collecting the grounds and running them again through the grinder.
7. Mash with a hammer
In this case, place your coffee beans between two sheets of parchment paper or a thick, sealed freezer bag. Place them on a towel laid on a flat surface. Spread out the beans into a single, even layer. Hammer them with consistent but moderate strokes. With this method, you will get a coarse to medium grind. Alternatively, use a mallet or meat tenderizer to crush them.
8. Try a butcher’s knife
If the aforementioned methods do not seem to work for you, try a butcher’s knife. It features a wide blade that offers a large surface area for cracking and crushing coffee beans. Simply lay coffee beans between sheets of parchment paper placed on a hard surface. Crush the beans using the flat surface of the knife. You will get a medium to fine grind. Be careful not to injure yourself with the knife.
The Bottom Line
Any coffee enthusiast who is serious about getting a great-tasting cup of Joe should only brew with freshly ground coffee beans. By using fresh grounds, you will get most of the coffee oils and natural flavors in your brew. If you brew with overstayed grounds, your brew is more likely to taste stale. However, in the unlikely event that you cannot use your coffee grinder, use the alternative methods discussed above on how to grind coffee beans without grinder.