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6 Coffee Grinder Cleaning Hacks

Last Updated: April 16, 2024

Written by Karen Norman
Coffee Grinder Cleaning Hacks

Coffee Grinder Cleaning Hacks that Clean Naturally. 

Your Coffee Grinder may be the reason your coffee lacks its usual pizzazz. 

A simple Coffee Grinder Cleaning Hack when obviously, you can’t put an Electric Coffee Grinder in the Dishwasher. Not to mention it’s risky to clean those sharp blades by hand.

Introduction to Coffee Grinder Cleaning. 

Is your Coffee taste a little off? Is your Grinder looking a little grimy? Have you wondered if there is a Coffee Grinder Cleaning Hack? Well, there is, or at least there is specifically for Blade Grinders. Read on below….

Benefits of using a Coffee Grinder. 

Maybe like us, you just love the smell of freshly ground coffee beans. Freshly Ground Coffee certainly gives your coffee a more superior flavour than a bag of ready-ground coffee. However whilst Grinding Fresh Coffee Beans is for sure one way to improve the taste of your coffee, using good coffee is paramount. A Superior Quality Coffee Bean will also mean less strain on the grinder and leave less of an oil residue. Also, Coffee Beans last longer than ground Coffee.

Types of Coffee Grinders. 

  • Blade Grinders – Uses Blades to grind the bean into gradually smaller and smaller particles. It depends on the length of time of the grind. A cheaper option but it can be noisy.
  • Burr Grinders – Wheel or Conical – Uses two Burrs. The Burrs are rotating, opposing metal serrated-edged circles in which the coffee beans are sandwiched. The beans are essentially crushed by two alternating grinder wheels. There is usually more consistency in the size of the ground. Burr Grinders are more expensive.

Manual versus Electric Grinders

Manual Grinders are Burr Grinders. Blade Grinders tend to be electric. Manual Grinders are simply made but require some effort (manual lever rotation) and are not as quick at producing your grounds. The grounds are consistent in size but you may have a limited number of Ground Size Settings. Manual Grinders are usually cheaper than their electric counterparts. However, Electric Grinders are much more convenient. So it often boils down to a decision of budget and time. Yet some just love the meditative process involved in about those three minutes of Manual Grinding.

For a comprehensive article on Choosing a Grinder please see A Brewer’s Guide to Choosing a (Good) Coffee Grinder.

Why carry out a Coffee Grinder Cleaning? 

Oils from the Coffee Beans can leave a stale and unpleasant residue on the grinder and affect the quality of taste of your ground coffee.

Coffee is Organic and as such it is susceptible to exposed elements of air and heat that make it perishable and the coffee quality tainted.

A Coffee Grinder Cleaning – How to Clean your Coffee Grinder. 

It goes without saying to read the manufacturer’s instructions on cleaning your grinder. However a word of caution, some manufacturers will insist that you use a Grinder Cleaner made for the purpose. They argue that the hardness of household items such as rice can be a strain on the grinder’s motor. However, if you wish to take a chance with your blade grinder, please see below…

Coffee Grinder Cleaning Hacks for Blade Grinders – not Burr Grinders. 

  1. Rice – There are several schools of thought on the methods for Coffee Grinder Cleaning. One method is to use rice. Some say to use dry, uncooked rice – any type – brown white etc. Others say parboil it first then let it dry as it will be softer. Use enough to cover the grinder blades about 1/4 to 1/3 of a cup. Ground to a fine powder.
  2. Bread – Short of Rice? Use Bread. The Staler the better. Stale Bread will not have the moisture that fresh bread has. Although not considered as effective as Rice, it is for sure less of a strain on the grinder. The starch in bread and oil will absorb the oils.
  3. Kosher Salt – It must be Kosher as it is more Course. Using the same method above
  4. Sugar – Similar effect to Kosher Salt
  5. Rolled Oats – Similar to effect to Bread although there is no waiting for the ingredients to go stale.
  6. Baking Soda – Clean it by grinding 15ml of Baking Soda.

With each method above – After grinding, empty out the mix and clean with a pastry brush or other soft brush. You can also wipe with a paper towel very lightly dabbed in vinegar afterwards but it will leave a smell for a little while that should dissipate once completely dry. You could also just use a damp cloth without the vinegar. Care must be taken though so that the machine receives almost no moisture.

Other Uses for an Electric Coffee Blade Grinder. 

Before using your Grinder for other ingredients. Ensure your grinder is clean and clear of coffee first.

  • Whole Spices – effective if you don’t have a Pestle and Mortar to crush them
  • Breadcrumbs – Stale Bread in small pieces filled to half the height of the grinder.
  • Grains – Particularly useful for grinding Flax-seed. Store them whole and grind as needed.
  • Dried Leafy Herbs – Dry out those herbs from the garden and then grind them for use in various recipes
  • Sugar – Grind to make Icing Sugar
  • Nuts – Walnuts, Pine Nuts and Pecans will grind nicely.
  • Homemade Flour – Grind Almonds for Almond Flour or use other nuts for a variety of healthy flour options.
  • Paper Confetti – Add some tiny sheets of coloured paper and be ready for the next wedding invite.

With all the above suggestions, do not overfill the grinder.


If you use your coffee grinder regularly, you may wish to clean it once a week to keep your brew at its best. It should especially be cleaned when grinding ingredients other than coffee – both before and afterwards. As a rule, it is simply healthier to clean that grinder regularly and then you should end up with a Coffee Grinder looking as good as the day you bought it.

If your main motivation is indulging in the most perfect brew possible, please see our blog: Coffee Pot Cleaning Hacks or check out all our Cleaning Hacks.

Other Cleaning Hacks you may like

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