Updated: April 29, 2021
Air is the enemy of all coffee drinkers. Once air comes in contact with your coffee grinds, they begin to lose their flavor. Coffee manufacturers vacuum seal their grinds to keep them fresh while they sit on the shelves at the supermarket but once you break that seal, it’s all downhill from there. Buying whole coffee beans and grinding them yourself is a great way to ensure that your coffee remains as flavorful as possible. But do you know how to grind your coffee beans properly?
Different types of coffee calls for different types of grinds. So you’ll need to learn to use your coffee grinder properly if you want to make the freshest best tasting coffee possible.
If you plan on brewing your coffee with a percolator or a French Press coffee maker then you’ll need a coarser grind. Place the coffee beans in your coffee grinder and tap the grind button a few times as you would use the pulse feature on your food processor. The goal is to break the beans up so that they look like tiny pieces of coffee bean. If they look like a powder, then you need to slowly back away from the coffee grinder and start again. Remember to tap the button and not hold it down.
Automatic drip coffee makers work best with medium grinds. Picture the grinds that you’d find in a can of supermarket coffee. Those are medium grinds. They can be described as looking like brown sand. So remember the last time you went to the beach but instead of seeing the sand in between your toes, imagine seeing sand in your coffee maker. Once again, while holding the coffee grinder button, don’t get carried away and over grind your coffee beans. You do not want a fine powder if you’re going to use an automatic coffee maker.
Finally if your using an espresso maker, you want those fine powdery grinds that you’ve been trying to avoid when making coarse and medium grinds. So grind away until your heart is content.
Grinding your own coffee beans right before you brew your coffee is a great way to make sure that you’re getting the freshest cup of coffee possible. But a fresh cup of coffee can still be bitter or weak. Learning how to grind your coffee beans is an important part of making great coffee.