How To Grind Coffee Beans Without a  Grinder?

How To Grind Coffee Beans Without a Grinder? 7 Ways That Work 

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Coffee beans stay fresh for longer than ground coffee, and the resulting brew is much more aromatic when you make it using freshly ground coffee. However, not everyone owns a coffee grinder. Luckily, you will not have to deprive yourself of fresh coffee. We will tell you unique ways to grind coffee without a coffee grinder.

You can grind coffee beans using a juicer/blender, a food processor, or a spice grinder. Alternatively, you can use a rolling pin, a mortar and pestle, a butcher knife, and a cheese grater to grind coffee beans without any machine. The manual methods take significantly longer to perform.

How Do You Grind Coffee Beans Using Electrical Appliances?

Even if you do not have a grinder, your other electrical appliances like your food processor, juicer/blender, and spice grinder can come in handy. 

Grinding Coffee Beans Using Electrical Appliances
Method 1 – Using a Spice grinder or food processor

½ cup of coffee beans (can be altered)

A spice grinder or food processor

Method 2 – Using a Blender

½ cup of coffee beans (or as required)


Method 1 – Grinding Coffee Beans Using a Spice Grinder or Food Processor

Even if you do not own a grinder, we are pretty sure you have a food processor or a spice grinder. A spice grinder is the best choice as a coffee grinder. However, it might damage the machine if it is not very heavy duty. Nevertheless, if you are adamant about using some fresh coffee beans, then you can make do with a spice grinder. Here is how you can accomplish it. This method is suitable for both food processors and spice grinders.


  • ½ cup of coffee beans (can be altered)
  • A spice grinder or food processor


Step 1 – Put the desired amount of coffee beans into the grinder (½ cup or depending on the amount of coffee you want). Grind the beans on ‘High mode’ for 10 seconds.

Step 2 – Use the ‘puree’ or ‘pulse’ setting and grind the beans for about 20 seconds. Open the grinder and check if they have all been ground; if not, grind them for another 10 seconds. Continue doing this until the desired consistency is reached.

 A spice grinder with pepper in it.

Method 2 – Using A Blender To Grind Coffee

Almost everyone has a blender at home. Instead of the tiresome manual grinding, you can use your blender to grind the beans. You are in luck if the grinder has a pulse or puree setting. If not, you will have to use the juice setting, which may not be as efficient. 

Remember that this method may not work too well as the beans might get stuck to the inside of the blender’s jug and not get crushed properly. Below, we will teach you how to blend whole bean coffee.


  • ½ cup of coffee beans (or as required)
  • Blender/Juicer


Step 1 – Put ½ a cup of coffee beans into the blender and close the lid firmly. Set the mixer to ‘high’ speed and blend for 60-80 seconds. Then open the blender and remove the grounds stuck to the sides of the jug and push them back to the bottom of the jug.

Step 2 – Blend again for 20 seconds or until you are sure they have all been ground adequately.

Step 3 – If you feel like the beans are not grinding properly despite being in the blender for more than 4 minutes, then transfer the beans to a Ziploc bag and seal them. Use a rolling pin or a knife to press against the beans and crush them until they are evenly ground.

How To Grind Coffee Beans By Hand?

Don’t have any electrical appliances? Here are some ways to grind whole bean coffee manually.

How to Grind Coffee Beans Without Any Machine?
Method 1 – Using Mortar and Pestle

½ or ¼ cup of coffee beans

A mortar and pestle

Method 2- Using a Rolling Pin

½ cup beans

Parchment paper or Ziploc bag

A rolling pin

Method 3 – Using a Butcher Knife

A blunt butcher knife

¼ cup of coffee beans (or as required)

Method 4 – Using a Hammer

Mallet or hammer

¼ cup of coffee beans

Ziploc bag or parchment paper

Method 5 – Using a Cheese Grater

A Cheese Grater

5-10 coffee beans

Method 1 – Using a Mortar And Pestle To Grinding Whole Bean Coffee 

If you do not own a food processor or a blender, then you’ll have to grind the beans by hand. This method is rather tiring and time-consuming but will still give you a fresh cup of joe. Remember that the size of the ground coffee will not be consistent. Some beans will be more powdery than others, and it will also take a good 10-15 minutes to grind the beans properly. 

Here is how you can use a mortar and pestle to grind the coffee beans. Put only a quarter cup of beans if you have a small mortar. You can put half a cup of beans into a larger mortar.

a mortar and a pestle.


  • ½ or ¼ cup of coffee beans
  • A mortar and pestle


Step 1 – Put the coffee beans into the mortar (¼ cup for a small and ½ cup for a large mortar). Hold the pestle firmly using your whole hand and force it down on the beans. Do it slowly at first since pushing the pestle too hard on the beans can cause them to jump out of the mortar.

Step 2 – After all the beans have been broken into pieces, you can press the pestle faster and harder and thus make the grounds finer. Now, press down on the beans by moving the pestle in a circular motion to ensure every bean is crushed finely. Keep doing this until you have a uniform powder.

Method 2 – Using A Rolling Pin To Grind Whole Bean Coffee

A rolling pin is a fantastic tool for grinding coffee beans. Like a mortar and pestle, this method will also take time. We love this method because rolling pins are inexpensive, and you can get one at any nearby store. 

You will have to use small amounts of beans for this method and grind them in batches. However, there is one drawback to this method: when you grind beans in batches, the beans you grind first will lose their freshness. That is why step 3 of this method is crucial.


  • ½ cup beans
  • Parchment paper or Ziploc bag
  • A rolling pin


Step 1 – Put ½ a cup of beans into a plastic bag or place them between a large piece of parchment paper (We recommend using a Ziploc bag). Place the bag or folded parchment paper on a flat surface and start hammering the setup.

Step 2 – Crush the beans and press the rolling pin on the bag/paper as well. After the beans have been crushed into little pieces, start rolling the rolling pin over them to crush them even more. Continue rolling and pressing on the bag until the beans are evenly crushed.

a rolling pin on a flat surface

Method 3 – Grinding The Beans Using A Butcher Knife

That huge butcher knife in your kitchen can come in handy in helping you get a steamy cup of joe! Make sure you have a wide knife so you can save time. You will not be cutting the beans, but instead, you will be using the flat sides to press the beans together.


  • A blunt butcher knife
  • ¼ cup of coffee beans (or as required)


Step 1 – Place the coffee beans on a flat surface. Place a parchment paper or paper towel on top of the beans. Put the butcher knife sideways on top of the coffee beans and carefully press against them.

Step 2 – Use your palms to press firmly on the beans and grind them. Press the beans slowly and firmly. Do not press them too fast because they will fall off the counter. Keep pushing them continuously for 20 minutes or until they are crushed and evenly shaped.

Method 4 – Grinding Coffee Beans Using a Hammer or Mallet

A mallet or a hammer can grind coffee beans too. They are not just useful in construction and meat tenderizing but can be your coffee partners too! Remember to clean them properly before following this method. While the coffee beans will not be in direct contact with the mallet/hammer, you still need to be careful as the Ziploc bag might tear or a few beans might leave the ends of the folded parchment paper.


  • Mallet or hammer
  • ¼ cup coffee beans
  • Ziploc bag or parchment paper


Step 1 – Put the beans into a Ziploc bag. If you do not have one, then place the beans on parchment paper and fold the edges. Place these sealed beans on the floor or a sturdy surface that will not crack in response to the pounding.

Step 2 – Pound the hammer on top of the sealed beans slowly at first to crush the beans into medium-sized pieces. Then, press the hammer onto the bag/paper firmly (do not pound) and crush the beans into a smaller size. Keep pressing firmly until you get your desired grind size. For a more powdery grind, keep pressing and pounding the beans for about 2-3 minutes more.

A meat tenderizer

Method 5 – Using A Cheese Grater To Grind Whole Bean Coffee

You can even use a cheese grater to grind coffee. However, since coffee beans are small, this method is sometimes a hassle, and we would not recommend it. Also, there is a chance you might hurt yourself since your fingers will be close to the grater. Nevertheless, you can still use this method as a last resort.


  • A Cheese Grater
  • 5-10 coffee beans
  • A knife or spoon


Pick up each bean and rub it against the handheld cheese grater to grind it. Continue doing it until you reach the end of the bean. You can crush the bigger ends with a knife or spoon. Do this for all the beans.

Tips For Grinding Coffee Without A Grinder

Follow the tips below for a better grinding experience and to keep yourself safe.

  • When using a blender or food processor, tilt the machine to one side. This will ensure that all the beans are properly crushed.
  • Grind a fresh batch of beans before every brew for fresher-tasting coffee. Also, when you are grinding in batches, make sure you transfer the ground beans to an airtight container before starting the next batch. Storing them in this way leads to a more aromatic and fresh brew.
  • Do not use a sharp butcher knife for grinding. You will be using your hands to press the beans, so use a blunt and thick one to prevent cuts.
  • Cover your hands using gloves when using a cheese grater to prevent cuts.
  • Do not pound the beans with a hammer while they are on your kitchen counter. Marble counters can easily break in response to pounding and hammering, so be careful. Put the beans in a Ziploc bag and hammer them on the floor.
  • When grinding beans using a knife, rolling pin, or hammer, always use a Ziploc bag, as the beans can easily fly off the counter.

Can You Brew Coffee Beans Without Grinding Them?

Yes, you can brew coffee without grinding them. However, using whole coffee beans will take very long to brew since the surface area will be significantly reduced. Even if you do not have a grinder, we recommend using our above-mentioned methods to grind the beans only slightly. It is okay if you cannot achieve a perfect grind, just grind them enough to lower the brewing time. 

Ground coffee in a spoon

How Fine Should I Grind The Coffee Beans?

This depends entirely on your preferences. An extra coarse grind (where beans are only smashed into a few pieces) is perfect if you are making coffee on a stovetop or making a cold brew. A normal course grind is suitable for making coffee in a French Press.

A medium-fine grind is suitable for pour-over coffee, while a fine grind (close to powdery but not so thin) is best suited for espresso machines. If you are brewing using a drip coffee machine, then go for medium grounds (not too powdery yet not too coarse). Usually, the pre-ground coffee we buy is medium-ground coffee. An extra-fine grind is perfect for Turkish coffee.

An inappropriate grind size might have an impact on the taste and texture of your brewed coffee. Crushing too finely in a metal filter, such as a percolator, can allow grounds to pass through the holes and cause your brewed coffee to become too textured or even salty.

 Sometimes, you get bitter coffee because you use the wrong grind size. When your cold brew is too bland or too bitter, that may be because you are using the wrong grind size too. Therefore, consulting a grind size chart is very important.

Different Grind Sizes And What They Are Best Used For
Grind sizeArea of Usage
Extra fine grindIdeal for Turkish coffee
Fine grindIdeal for espresso
Medium fine grindIdeal for pour-over coffee
Medium grindIdeal for siphon and drip coffee
Medium CourseIdeal for clever dripper and cafe solo
Coarse grindIdeal for french press and percolators
Extra course grindIdeal for a cold brew and stove-top (cowboy) coffee


We have taught you how to grind coffee beans without a grinder. Now you do not need to get pre-ground coffee and also will not need a grinder. Remember to follow the tips and save yourself from cuts and mishaps. Even though some of the methods are more time-consuming than others, they will surely get the job done.

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