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Can You Use a Blender to Grind Coffee Beans? What You Need to Know

Since coffee grinders and blenders seem to work the same way, this question may have crossed your mind – can you grind coffee beans in a blender?

You may not know it, but your regular blender is a perfect alternative for grinding coffee beans at home. All you have to do is follow the essential requirements, including timing, speed control, and the amount of coffee beans per grinding session.

I’ll give you the steps you need to follow when using a blender to grind coffee beans. Plus, I’ll share some tips and point out mistakes you should avoid.

Let’s get right to it.

Can You Grind a Blender Grind Coffee Beans?

disassembled blender on top of the table

Yes, a blender can safely grind the dry and fairly tough coffee beans. You see, grinders and blenders use electric-powered blades to break up coffee beans. So, a blender is an ideal substitute for crushing almost any organic foodstuff in your kitchen.

Even so, a blender does not match a grinder when it comes to grinding coffee in one go. Blenders are designed for crushing soft, juicy food items such as fruits. Therefore, when working on relatively hard materials like roasted coffee beans, you’ll need to reduce the amount proportionately to avoid overworking the blender.

Basically, you are limited on the amount of coffee beans to grind per session. Hence, you should consider the blender’s ability to work on a certain amount of coffee beans without overheating. This means you will have to endure the inconvenience of repeatedly grinding if you are to prepare enough coffee to fill an entire pot.

Ordinary grinders, on the other hand, are designed for increased resilience. They can work on a considerably large amount of grains per batch. So, you should note the varied strengths between the two appliances to avoid some of the common mistakes when using a blender as a coffee grinder substitute.

Simple Steps to Grind Coffee Beans With a Blender?

roasted coffee beans for blending

Follow these simple steps to grind your coffee beans in a blender:

Step 1: Switch on the grinder setting in your blender. Alternatively, adjust to medium-high speed if the grinder setting isn’t available.

Step 2: Pour a quarter cup of coffee beans into the blender and fasten the lid firmly on top.

Step 3: Grind your beans quickly or use a pulsing option if it is available in your blender. The pulse technique enables you to grind in short and quick bursts. Since you are not running your blender at high speed, you should expect a coarser grind.

Step 4: Tilt the blender sideways when grinding to move larger bean portions into the blade path to produce a more consistent grind.

Useful Tip: You have to apply some additional techniques to make a consistent grind. For example, use a smaller amount of beans at a time to avoid overheating the grains. Always remember to use a pulsing option if your blender has one to prevent undesired heating.

What to Consider When Grinding Coffee Beans in a Blender

Since you are improvising, there are some important considerations you need to think about. Remember to:

blender pulse type on top of the table

  • Operate the blender on a pulse-type mode instead of running it continuously to minimize motor wear out which happens when grinding dried food.
  • If your blender doesn’t come with a pulse option, apply an intermittent blending method to prevent the mixer from overheating the oil extracts in the beans. Overheating the beans leads to weak coffee flavor.
  • Go for a blender with sturdy blades as it can easily grind your coffee beans within the shortest time possible. This doesn’t mean a blender with removable blades cannot work perfectly on your beans.
  • More blending power is essential to produce finer and consistent grinds. So, go for blenders with over 500 watts of power output if you have that option.

Common Mistakes When Grinding Coffee Beans With a Blender

You should be on the lookout to avoid some common mishaps when grinding coffee beans with a blender.

For instance, heaping too much coffee beans per blending session is an issue when working with a blender. Aside from pushing your blender to its limit, this practice could overheat your ground coffee, and you don’t want that. You could end up with a bitter-tasting coffee brew. 

Also, blenders tend to mislead individuals into overprocessing their coffee beans. Since blenders are designed for a fairly different role, some users tend to overcompensate or undercompensate for the missing grinding features. As a result, they come up with over-ground or partially-ground end products.

Best Blenders to Grind Coffee Beans

Although all blenders can work perfectly on any type of coffee beans, some models are known to produce the best grinds.

Here is a list of the top four blenders in the market that can work best on coffee beans.

KitchenAid Variable Speed Hand Blender: This model has a unique BPA-free chopper attachment, which is ideal for grinding dry coffee beans. It also comes with a variable speed trigger switch that helps moderate blade rotations to produce the desired grind.

Blendtec Total Classic Original Blender: This blender is configured to run at 10 different speeds. So, it provides ample room to grind coffee according to your liking. Even so, the presence of too many mechanical features in this model can be confusing to inexperienced users.

Ninja Professional Countertop Blender: This brand allows you to vary the speed to suit recommended grinding requirements. Its six-blade mechanics is ideal for turning coffee beans into the preferred grind.

Vitamix Professional Series 750 Blender: This professional series blender is capable of producing the most consistent grind. It is both powerful and quick, hence suitable for the dry and heat-prone characteristics of coffee beans.

You might also wonder if you can use a food processor instead. Read our guide on grinding coffee beans using a food processor.

Does Grinding Coffee Beans Damage My Blender?

When you follow proper operational conditions, your blender should not encounter any mechanical issues. So, despite being designed for crushing fairly soft and juicy food items, the blender can be safely used to grind coffee beans.

Even so, you should follow some strict controls. Importantly, you are required to grind a small number of coffee beans in short bursts instead of continuous speed. This safeguards against overheating your blender and wearing out the motor.

Don’t forget to switch on the grind mode if your blender settings allow it. This allows the blender to be more capable of crushing relatively hard food like coffee beans without overworking the internal mechanics of your blender.

Final Thoughts

A blender is by far the best alternative for DIYers who would prefer to grind coffee beans at home instead of buying ground coffee.

A blender, like every other professional coffee grinder, comes with blade grinders, which depend on intense rotational speed to crush food items. A blender might not always give you a fine and consistent grind, so you’ll need to use some additional techniques.

Krista Haws

Known among her friends as 'the caffeine fiend', Krista loves all things coffee. From an extremely short, strong espresso to a 3 day cold brew, Krista loves them all.

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