Did you know, more than 450 million cups of coffee are consumed in the United States daily?
Believe it or not, 74% of Americans buy pre-ground coffee because it’s convenient. But fresh ground coffee beans offer deeper and more complex flavors, and a richer and more flavorful aroma.
The problem is that grinding your own coffee beans requires a specialty grinder, taking up counter space and time.
Worse, what happens when your grinder breaks and you don’t have pre-ground coffee available for a substitute?
While you could just go get a cup of coffee from the closest Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts, there is an alternative. Your blender is almost certainly able to grind your coffee beans in an emergency, and once you’ve mastered the technique you may find that you don’t need a coffee grinder at all!
In this guide, you’ll learn:
- Why grind coffee beans in a blender?
- What are the benefits of grinding coffee beans with a blender?
- What are the different ways to grind coffee beans with a blender?
- And more!
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What's in this Guide?
Why Grind Coffee Beans in a Blender?
Making coffee with a blender is easy, convenient, and it allows you to have a fresh cup of coffee every time. Why make coffee with a blender you ask?
Well, today’s kitchens are filled with more and more expensive specialized gadgets. While those tools are incredibly useful, sometimes you need to pair down, and sometimes you need to have a backup plan.
Knowing that you can grind your coffee grounds in a blender (and knowing how) is a great backup plan if your grinder breaks unexpectedly. Coffee grinders are usually not very water proof since they are designed to work with very dry coffee beans.
That means if you grind the wrong substance in your coffee grinder (like cocoa beans, don’t ask how I know), you’ll probably end up frying the internal circuitry. I don’t know about you, but I was very glad to have a backup plan that morning.
Since blenders are less specialized than a coffee grinder, you can save on counter space by buying a more versatile blender instead of both a blender and a coffee grinder. Blenders are a versatile kitchen staple, where you can blend practically anything including baby food, ice cream, and protein shakes. It can also be a great option for smaller kitchens, galley kitchens, and even for keeping in your college dorm room.
When space is at a premium, replacing your coffee grinder with your blender gives you more room to keep a specialty tool that doesn’t have an easy replacement.
Coffee grinders are generally only for coffee beans. The average price for a good blender can range from $50-$100 and the price of a coffee grinder can range anywhere from $50-$400. Coffee grinders can get quite expensive and if you are a casual coffee drinker, then investing in one just doesn’t seem worth it.
Knowing how to use a blender to grind your coffee also makes it easier to grind on the go. After all, your friend might not have a coffee grinder, but chances are they have a blender.
Knowing that you can use their blender means that you can bring them whole beans when you want to show them this fantastic new coffee you just discovered, without risking flavor contamination on the trip.
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What Are The Benefits of Grinding Coffee Beans with a Blender
Grinding coffee in a blender is easy once you know how. You’ll still get the same flavors and rich taste from beans ground in a blender, as long as you know how to preserve the taste. Most of the taste comes from the oils (lipids) in the coffee beans. Grinding coffee beans helps you get to the flavors inside, the many flavinoids contained in naturally occurring oils.
The oils in the beans are actually water soluble, if they weren’t water soluble then the coffee wouldn’t smell or taste as good as it does. However, it doesn’t take a ton of water to get rid of those oils.
Even the moisture in the air can dilute the oils, which means you should grind your coffee and drink it right away. That’s also why grinding your coffee fresh results in a better taste than using pre-ground coffee.
The longer ground coffee remains unbrewed, the more of a chance your coffee can become contaminated by surrounding smells and the fewer of those flavorful oils will remain in the grounds.
The depletion of CO2 is another factor to consider when grinding your coffee beans. This has almost the same effect on your beans as moisture does. CO2 transfers the oils in your beans to your hot coffee. The amount of CO2 in the cells of the beans defines how fresh the coffee will be. Once the beans are ground, CO2 begins to escape and creates a stale taste to your coffee, if not brewed right away.
Pre-ground coffee can lose its taste not only from the moisture in the air, but it’s also porous, which means it can cling onto smells from its’ surroundings.
If your kitchen smells like the cat fish you cooked last night, then your coffee can pick up that smell. Coffee grounds are thirsty and try to drink in as much moisture as it can, and all that moisture brings scents with it. Once those scents are in the coffee, you can’t get rid of them.
But when you buy whole coffee beans, the flavor is much stronger and the intact bean has less surface area to absorb moisture and unwanted flavors and scents.
Like grinding your coffee beans in a grinder, you still have lots of control over the size of your grounds when you use a blender. Even slightly changing the size of your grind can have an impact on the taste and quality of the coffee.
It’s true that blenders usually can’t create as fine a grind as a coffee grinder, but you can easily get medium ground coffee, and it’s actually easier to create a coarse grind.
Medium and coarse ground coffee is much better for cold-brew and making coffee in a french press, and both techniques bring out different flavors in the coffee. If you want to experience the full range of your coffee’s flavor, aim for a medium grind and experiment with different preparation techniques.
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What You Need To Know About Grinding Coffee Beans with a Blender
To get the most out of your coffee grounds, it’s best to drink it right away. Storing your freshly ground coffee beans will make you lose out on all of the flavor that you recieve when you first grind it, due to the air diluting the taste. You will want to grind your beans in the blender just before you brew it.
For grinding coffee beans in your blender, it’s best that you use a blender with a glass pitcher. You can still use a blender with a plastic pitcher, but there’s a chance it could retain the smell of coffee and it can also get scratched in the process.
Supplies You’ll Need For Blending Coffee Beans with a Blender
Grinding coffee beans in a blender only requires a few ingredients. With just a few items, you’ll have freshly ground coffee in the blink of an eye.
- Whole coffee beans
What Are The Different Ways to Grind Coffee Beans with a Blender
There are two different methods to look put for when grinding your coffee beans. With grinding coffee beans, it’s very easy to either over extract or under extract them.
When you over grind the taste of your coffee will be bitter and if you under grind it will be sour. If you over extract your coffee beans it means you have taken out too much flavor out of your coffee when you ground your beans. Underextract means you haven’t taken enough flavor out of your coffee when you ground your beans.
Check out this video that demonstrates how to make cold brew coffee with a blender.
How To Grind Coffee Beans with a Blender (7 Step Guide)
- Plug in your blender and get it ready for the coffee beans
- Measure your beans in small batches
- Toss your beans in the blender and pulse them at medium speed
- Watch your beans closely
- Take out your beans and repeat steps 1-5 until you have enough coffee grounds
- Brew your coffee grounds as you usually would
- Make sure you wash out your blender as soon as possible
How To Grind Coffee Beans with a Blender (7 Steps)
Step 1: Plug in your blender and get it ready for the coffee beans
Carefully plug in your blender and make sure it’s clean before you add in your coffee beans.
Step 2: Measure your beans in small batches
It’s important to only grind small batches in your blender so it will properly grind all of the beans consistently. You will want to start out with about ¼ cup of coffee beans.
Step 3: Toss you beans in the blender and pulse them at medium speed
Turn on your blender and either turn it on the grinder setting or medium speed setting. Pulse the beans on medium speed to break up the beans. Then, allow the blender to do the work, while still on medium.
Step 4: Watch your coffee beans closely
Make sure you watch the blender closely. A blender is great for medium-fine grinds and coarse grinds alike. But, it’s important to make sure the blender isn’t starting to heat up. Excess heat can damage the flavinoids and oils inside the coffee beans, changing the flavor, and often making your coffee more bitter.
If your blender starts to warm up, take a break and let it cool. Ideally, take your coffee grounds out while the blender cools and store them in a container safely away from the heat.
Step 5: Take out your coffee beans and repeat steps 1-5 until you have enough coffee grounds
When your beans are ground to your liking, pull them out of your blender and repeat steps 1-5 until you have the correct amount of ground coffee beans for your coffee, based on your preference. It’s best to do this in small batches, remember consistency and patience is key.
Step 6: Brew your coffee as you usually would
Once you have the perfect amount of freshly ground coffee, now you can brew it. Brew the ground coffee beans like you normally would.
Step 7: Make sure you wash your blender as soon as possible
Once you have finished grinding your coffee beans in the blender, make sure you clean it thoroughly right away. Otherwise, it will start to smell like stale coffee. Not to mention that while coffee flavors are delicate, they are also fairly strong.
Just like you don’t want your coffee to taste like last night’s catfish, you probably don’t want tonight’s blended butternut soup to taste like coffee.
My Final Thoughts on Grinding Coffee Beans with a Blender
There’s nothing better in the morning than the heavenly scent of fresh coffee fill your home.
Grinding coffee beans with a blender is a quick and easy method for the freshest cup of coffee possible. It is absolutely worth it to grind your own coffee and it’s even easier to accomplish it with a blender.