If you love to prepare spicy meals then you should definitely check out our best spice grinder list.
These devices can grind spices quickly and efficiently. They can dramatically improve the flavor of your food and the enjoyment you’ll get from your meals. Your dishes will go from bland and boring to savory and exciting in no time.
Spice grinders allow you to produce your own ground seasonings and blends from the whole spices you have on your spice rack. If you’re interested in some spices that will enhance your cooking, then you should definitely read our articles on the best cumin, coriander and dry mustard substitutes to get some inspiration.
Instead of buying pre-ground spices from the store you can grind them at home right before you use them. Once you taste the difference freshly ground spices can make in your meals ranging from breakfast omelettes to crockpot dinners, you will never want to use store-bought mixes again.
Spice grinders are an easy and relatively inexpensive way to develop the most flavor in your dishes. They’re compact and easy to use. Many are electric and can whip up a batch of ground cumin or cinnamon in just a few seconds.
The simplest and most economical way to make more flavorful food is to grind your spices at home with a spice grinder. So if you need some ideas on whipping up easy, savory one-pot meals filled with flavor, these cookbooks here can get you started.
Spice Grinder Comparison Table
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Our Reviews of the 7 Top Spice Grinders
We have selected the 7 best spice grinders to review for you. We have focused our reviews based on the following: their overall ability to grind a variety of spices, their durability and ease-of-use.
Spice grinders are available in several styles and each style has its own advantages and disadvantages. You can learn more about the different styles and their benefits in our Spice Grinder Buyer’s Guide below.
Factors to Consider
We have focused our reviews on the most common style: the blade-chopping electric grinder. It is often sold as a coffee grinder. We also included a couple of mortar and pestle options for those who prefer a classic spice grinder.
These spice grinders are the best in the market based on their durability, function and ease-of-use. They have a strong track record of trouble-free performance. Each can quickly and easily grind your spices into an even powder. Most importantly, we focused on reviewing spice grinders that are easy to maintain.
If you want a grinder that can do it all, then consider buying the Secura electric coffee grinder. This removable-bowl grinder comes complete with everything you need for the ultimate grinding experience. It was an easy choice for our Best Overall spice grinder.
The attractive stainless steel Secura is ideal for grinding spices, nuts, and seeds. It will also grind coffee. It can also chop a small amount of fresh ingredients in the seperate chopping bowl.
This grinder is very easy to use and has a simple 1-touch pulse mechanism. Just push down on the top cover with one hand to pulse your ingredients.
The Secura grinder comes with: base unit, 2-blade removable grinding bowl, 4-blade removable chopping bowl, clear bowl lid and a top dome cover. The grinder measures 9.9 x 5.8 x 5.3 inches when fully assembled and weighs 2.7 pounds. The Secura has a 2-year warranty.
The Secura electric coffee grinder has several features that really make it stand apart from other electric spice grinders. It is the only grinder that comes with an internal lid that keeps your ingredients in the bowl while pulsing the motor.
This internal lid also allows you to chop a small amount (½ cup or approximately 45 grams) of fresh or moist ingredients without damaging the appliance. You can easily chop garlic, onion or tomatoes in the chopping bowl. The removable stainless steel bowls are easy to clean by hand or in the dishwasher. Additional bowls and parts can be purchased separately.
While the Secura can handle a limited amount of moist ingredients the bowls are not leak-proof and have a limited capacity. So this is not a replacement for a mini-food processor even though it can handle moist ingredients.
Overall, the Secura is an excellent spice grinder and is inexpensive enough to fit almost any budget. If you want to get the most value out of an electric grinder then the Secura electric coffee grinder may be the best choice for your kitchen.
- Two removable bowls designed for grinding and chopping ingredients.
- Internal lid keeps the contents in the bowl and prevents spills.
- Motor shuts down automatically to prevent overheating.
- Can handle both dry and moist ingredients.
- Cord-wrap is poorly designed and awkward to use.
- Rubber shock-absorbing feet are small and fall off easily.
- Bowls have a limited capacity and are not leak proof.
If you want to grind your spices by hand, then the ChefSofi mortar and pestle set may be the grinder for you. This set is carved from solid granite and is sturdy enough to last a lifetime.
The ChefSofi has a rustic, unpolished exterior that lends a quaint appearance to your kitchen. This set is makes it easy to grind spices, fresh and dried herbs and even vegetables or meats by hand. It is ideal for most grinding tasks and works well with both dried and wet ingredients.
The bowl is heavy enough to stay in place as you grind and comes with an optional scratch-protector for the base. The large 2-cup capacity means it is big enough to make a batch of guacamole or pesto. The pestle is perfectly shaped to match the inner bowl and feels really comfortable in the hand while using.
The ChefSofi set comes with: granite mortar and pestle, scratch-protector sticker and e-cookbook. The mortar is 6 x 6 x 6 inches and the pestle is approximately 6 x 2 inches. The set weighs 7.05 pounds. The ChefSofi has a 2-year warranty and 100% satisfaction guarantee.
While the ChefSofi is an excellent set for all kinds of grinding tasks, it does have a couple of disadvantages. The granite is very hard and sturdy material but it is also porous. It can easily pick up flavors and aromas and pass them on to other ingredients if it’s not cleaned well between uses.
While this set can be washed in water, it will take several hours for the granite to dry completely. If you are grinding several different items you will want to grind your dry ingredients first and brush the bowl clean.
Otherwise the moisture in the stone may contaminate the next thing you grind. The best way to clean this set is to use the rice-method described in the FAQ.
Other than the challenges inherent to the materials, this is an excellent mortar and pestle set. It is ideal for spice-grinding and the large bowl makes it a fantastic option for making pesto, chutney or other pounded condiments. If you want a classic mortar and pestle, the ChefSofi may be the best option for your kitchen.
- Carved from solid granite with untextured exterior.
- Comes with optional scratch-protector for the base.
- Large capacity ideal for all kitchen grinding tasks.
- Granite is porous and can absorb moisture and flavors.
- Set is quite heavy and may be difficult for some chefs to handle.
- Requires hand-cleaning.
If you want a grinder with a lot of power then take a look at the Hamilton Beach Fresh Gring for beans and spices. This premium electric grinder is very durable, with thick stainless steel blades. However, the price is still super affordable.
The sleek black plastic and stainless steel is very easy to clean. The 12 cup grinding bowl can even be detached and put in the dishwasher.
The top cover contains the power button, allowing you to pulse your spices with just one hand.
This grinder can quickly powder dried spices like cinnamon and cloves. It is also ideal for grinding egg shells, flax or chia seeds. There are no extra bowls or lids to lose, and the cord tucks securely into the base for storage.
The Hamilton Beach grinder comes with: base unit, a removable 2-blade grinding bowl and a top cover. It measures 3.74 x 3.54 x 7.13 inches when fully assembled and weighs only 1.3 pounds.
While the Hamilton Beach is nice and large for an electric spice grinder it does have a few disadvantages. The blades are not as sharp as other grinders and some say it does not last that long. However, you really can’t beat this price!
You will want to keep your pulses short and quick to ensure the blades last as long as possible. There is an auto shut off feature on the grinder so you don’t have to worry about the motor burning out.
This is a removable-bowl grinder but it only comes with a single bowl. Extra bowls are available separately. You may want to grab a spare so you can have one bowl for grinding spices and one for coffee beans.
If you are looking for a large spice grinder, the Hamilton Beach model is a very good option. The large 12 cup grinder is powerful, dishwasher safe and is easy to use.
- Large 12 cup capacity
- Removable grinding bowl that is dishwasher safe
- Great price for such a large grinder.
- Blades wear out quickly.
- Pulse to grind with no grinding settings.
- Loud when grinding.
If you have struggled to use other mortar and pestle sets but still prefer a classic grinder, then the EZ Grip set may be the one for you. This porcelain set comes with an innovative shock-absorbing silicone base and pestle cover.
Porcelain is an excellent material for making mortar and pestle sets because it is very hard and not very porous. It can stand up to years of grinding without absorbing other colors, flavors or odors. Porcelain is also very easy to clean. You can wash this set by hand or put it in the dishwasher.
Your hands will love the feel of the cushioned pestle, and the silicone base keeps the bowl securely in place while grinding. The silicone is both slip-proof and easy to grip. This set is perfect for all your kitchen needs and is also suitable for grinding medications.
The EZ Grip comes with: porcelain mortar and pestle with removable silicone base and pestle-sleeve. The mortar measures 4.5 x 3.25 inches and the pestle is approximately 5.5 x 2 inches. The set weighs 2.51 pounds. The EZ Grip comes with a lifetime warranty against defects.
This is one of the lightest mortar and pestle sets on the market. It is an ideal set for all home chefs and is especially useful for folks who suffer from weakness or pain in their hands.
The downside to this set is that porcelain is more fragile than other materials. Hidden manufacturing defects could cause the mortar or pestle to eventually fracture. Also, the silicon sleeve on the pestle is a bit of a challenge to remove for cleaning.
Still, these are minor issues and don’t detract much from an overall great mortar and pestle set. If you want to make spice-grinding by hand as easy as possible then the EZ Grip set was made for your family.
- Silicon base and pestle-cover cushion your hands and prevent slippage.
- Porcelain is hard and won’t absorb other flavors/odors.
- Lifetime warranty against defects.
- Porcelain is fragile and can break unexpectedly.
- Silicone sleeve is a bit challenging to remove for cleaning.
- Smaller 8-ounce (1 cup) capacity.
If you want a straightforward, inexpensive electric grinder then the Quiseen grinder may be ideal for your kitchen. This basic fixed-bowl grinder is an excellent entry model and is our choice as the Best Budget pick.
The Quiseen is advertised as a coffee grinder but it does a great job grinding many kitchen spices. It is simple to use too. Just add your whole spices to the bowl and place the top cover on the unit.
Pulse the power button on the cover a few times and your spices are ready. The cushioned sides of the grinder make it easy to hold and keeps it from slipping out of your grip.
This is a fairly sturdy grinder and can handle many spices, seeds and even small nuts. In terms of value, you won’t find a better all-purpose electric grinder. This is an excellent option if you are just starting to use a spice grinder and don’t want to risk a larger financial investment.
The Quiseen comes with: base unit with integrated 2-blade grinder bowl and plastic top cover. This grinder has a built-in cord storage system. It measures 4.5 x 4.6 x 7.8 inches and weighs 1.65 pounds. This grinder has a capacity of approximately 2.5 ounces. The warranty on this product is unknown.
The Quiseen is a great option for grinding spices on a limited budget but it does have a couple of disadvantages.
It isn’t as powerful as a premium spice grinder. The Quiseen may struggle with grinding harder spices such as cinnamon sticks or cloves without taxing the motor. You will want to keep your pulses short and be sure not to overfill the bowl.
The Quiseen can handle grinding small seeds like chia and flax but might have problems with grinding sunflower seeds or whole hazelnuts or almonds. If you want to grind a lot of hard spices or larger seeds and nuts then this grinder might not be ideal for you.
Since it is a fixed-bowl grinder it can also be more challenging to clean. You will want to avoid using this appliance for grinding both coffee beans and spices.
Still, you won’t find a better spice grinder for the price. As an entry-level spice grinder it does a great job and is versatile enough to suit all kitchens. The grippable exterior and built-in cord storage system are bonuses as well. While it does not appear to have a warranty, at this price-point that isn’t really a concern.
- Best grinder-value for the price.
- Gripable exterior that cushions hands and prevents slips.
- Built-in cord storage system
- Fixed-bowl style is harder to clean.
- Motor may struggle to evenly grind harder spices.
- No warranty information available.
Another inexpensive option, the Cuisinart fixed-bowl grinder is surprisingly well designed for grinding spices. If you frequently need to grind a small amounts of spices or small seeds then this may be the grinder for you.
The Cuisinart has a couple of design features that really facilitate spice grinding. The top cover has a lip on it to keep your spices securely in the bowl and prevent spice-dust from drifting out. The 1-touch operation makes pulsing the appliance easy and you can even do it with one hand.
The Cuisinart comes with: base unit with integrated 2-blade grinding bowl and clear plastic top cover. It measures 4 x 4 x 7 inches and weighs 1.45 pounds. It has an 18-month warranty against defects.
While the Cuisinart is a solid option for a budget grinder it does have some drawbacks that make it less-than-ideal for some situations.
The motor is not strong enough to evenly grind harder spices without the risk of overheating. The capacity is limited to a maximum of 2.5 ounces and you will get better results using smaller amounts of spices. If you grind a lot of spices you may not be happy with this grinder.
The cover does a good job of keeping the spice dust down, but it also makes it more tricky to remove your spices from the bowl. You have to slide it to the side and hold it out of the way as you dump your spices out. Then there is the ever-present challenging of cleaning a fixed-bowl grinder.
This is still a good budget grinder for the right cook. It may not be the most attractive appliance but it gets the job done. If you frequently grind small amounts of spices and don’t mind dealing with the cover then this could be ideal the grinder for your kitchen.
- Budget-minded price is within reach of most families.
- Cover keeps spices in the bowl and spice-dust to a minimum.
- 18-month warranty against defects.
- Design makes removing ground spices harder than it should be.
- Small 2.5-ounce capacity.
- Fixed-bowl is harder to clean.
If you want a premium spice grinder for a budget price then the KitchenAid grinder may be the one for you. This removable-bowl grinder is a sleek and modern appliance perfectly suited for grinding all your kitchen spices.
The KitchenAid is one of the least-expensive removable-bowl grinders on the market. The powerful motor can evenly grind hard spices like cinnamon sticks with ease.
Just attach the bowl, add your spices and use the cover to pulse the motor. The bowl is easily cleaned by hand or in your dishwasher.
The KitchenAid comes with: base unit, removable 2-blade grinding bowl and clear plastic top cover. It measures 7.1 x 4.1 x 3.7 inches when fully assembled and weighs 2.6 pounds. The KitchenAid is covered under a 1-year warranty.
This grinder is an excellent option for most of your spice-grinding tasks but it does have a few things that hold it back.
The KitchenAid grinder comes with one large removable bowl designed for grinding coffee beans. While you can use this bowl for spice grinding, it does not have a cover to keep the spices from drifting out. Instead, KitchenAid recommends purchasing their 2-bowl spice-grinding accessory which includes these lids.
The problem with this is that the accessory spice-bowls are much smaller than the coffee bean-bowl included with the grinder. They allow you about half the capacity for spice-grinding compared with the larger bowl. You can use the included bowl for grinding spices but you may want to use a piece of clear plastic over it to prevent leakage.
There are versions of this grinder that come complete with the spice bowls but they are more expensive and have the same warranty as the less-expensive models.
This is still a solid option for a budget electric grinder and you can always opt to purchase the spice bowls down the line if you decide you need them. As long as you are careful to limit the spice-dust drifting out from the bowl you should easily be able to use this spice grinder for years to come.
- Premium removable-bowl grinder for a budget price.
- Large 12-ounce (1 ½ cup) capacity grinding bowl.
- 1-year warranty.
- Doesn’t come with spice-grinding bowls.
- Lacks an inner lid for grinding bowl.
- Accessories are rather pricey for some families.
Spice Grinder Buyer’s Guide
Investing in a spice grinder may be an easy decision if you love to cook spicy, flavorful food. Check out the video below for some best tips!
The best way to take advantage of a well-stocked spice rack is to grind your spices at home. You can save money buying your whole spices in bulk and grinding them fresh for each meal. Even spices you have stored for a year or more will taste amazingly bold when you grind them on the spot.
There are two good reasons that every chef should invest in a spice grinder for their kitchen: flavor and versatility.
The primary reason to grind your spices at home instead of using store-bought ground spices can be summed up in one word- flavor.
Freshly ground spices have a bolder, more complex flavor and aroma than their pre-ground cousins. Dishes prepared with freshly ground spices taste and smell better than those made with pre-ground spices. Why do freshly ground spices make such a difference in your recipes?
While pre-ground spices may remain useable for a year or so if stored properly, they quickly begin to lose their potency once ground. The volatile aromatic oils that control their scent and flavor profiles begin to evaporate as soon as the spice is ground.
Using a spice grinder allows you to extract the optimal amount of these oils (ie flavor) from your spices. Grinding spices fresh for each dish makes your food taste sophisticated and more exciting.
A second good reason to use a spice grinder is that they offer versatility in your cooking.
Some spices can achieve a whole new flavor profile depending on how you prepare them. A well-stocked rack of whole spices and a spice grinder will unlock new flavors for you to experiment with.
When you use a spice grinder, you have more options while you’re cooking. You can make your own custom spice blends too. If you enjoy Indian or other ethnic cuisines you will appreciate being able to replicate their spice-preparation methods at home.
Types of Spice Grinders
While there are many spice grinders on the market they essentially fall into 4 styles: electric grinders, mortar and pestle sets, spice mills and microplanes.
Each style is best suited for a different set of grinding tasks. The best grinder for your kitchen will depend on how you want to use it.
The most common and versatile spice grinders are the electric grinder and the classic mortar and pestle. These are the workhorses of the kitchen, grinding out a wide variety of spices for your cooking and baking.
Spice mills are more specialized but have their place in the kitchen too. These grinders are ideal for putting a finishing touch of seasoning on entrees.
The highly-specialized microplane is not a true spice grinder but rather an extremely fine grater. It is the best way to finely grate certain hard spices.
Electric Blade Grinders
Electric spice grinders are often marketed as coffee grinders but many are ideal for grinding spices too. If you want your spices ready in a hurry then an electric grinder may be the best choice for your kitchen. They are the fastest and easiest way to grind whole spices into a powder.
These best electric spice grinders are typically small, compact appliances. They have a bowl with a spinning blade that pulverizes a small amount of dry spices and even coffee beans. You just press the button to pulse the motor and the blades will do all the grinding work for you.
Fixed vs. Removable Bowl
There are two types of electric spice grinders: fixed-bowl and removable-bowl. Each type has its benefits and disadvantages for spice-grinding.
Disadvantages of Electric Spice Grinders
Electric spice grinders are fairly versatile and can handle a wide range of grinding tasks. There are some disadvantages to using an electric grinder, though.
These grinders’ motors often struggle with evenly grinding very hard spices such as cinnamon sticks or cloves. Many users sift these ground spices through a fine screen to remove any oversized particles before using them.
Electric grinders are more limited than a mortar and pestle set. They are not usually designed to handle softer or moist ingredients. If you want a grinder that can pulverize sun-dried tomatoes or garlic and basil to make a pesto then you may be happier with a different style.
The third challenge with using an electric spice grinder is that the ground spices can eventually make their way into the motor casing. This could seize the motor and prevent the grinder from working. This is a bigger issue with the removable-bowl types but is a potential problem for any electric spice grinder.
Mortar and Pestle
If you enjoy the hands-on aspect of cooking and have the time to grind, then you should consider ar a mortar and pestle. Of all the styles of spice grinder, a mortar and pestle set offers you the most flexibility and control over your grinds.
A mortar is a bowl used along with the club-shaped pestle to crush and grind spices into a fine powder or paste.
These sets are typically made from stone, ceramic, wood or metal. Heavier sets are perfect for crushing harder materials such as bark, roots or seeds. Wood or metal sets are more appropriate for grinding the more delicate herbs and spices.
Mortar and pestles can be used to grind a large variety of ingredients beyond just spices such as: dried and fresh herbs, dried and fresh fruits, nuts, seeds, vegetables and meats. You can also use a mortar and pestle for making pesto, guacamole and even for pounding veggies and meat into a mince.
These sets are very easy to use and maintain once you get comfortable with the grinding method. Chef Jamie Oliver has a great video demonstration of how to use a mortar and pestle if you need some tips.
Historically, mortar and pestles have been used for a wide array of activities. You can learn more about their fascinating history in this article from The Atlantic.
Often referred to as pepper grinders, spice mills allow you to quickly grind a spice (or mixture of spices) into a fine, medium or coarse grind.
They come in a variety of sizes and can be hand or battery-operated. The spices are loaded into a center chamber and then moved through a grinding press when the mill is turned.
Spice mills are extremely useful and many cooks keep several on hand. But they are not typically used for grinding cooking spices so much as they are for finishing dishes. A few twists of a seasoned pepper or salt blend can add a nice touch to a stew, for instance.
But spice mills can’t produce the finely powdered spices that an electric spice grinder or mortar and pestle can.
As mentioned above, a microplane isn’t exactly a spice grinder. It is a very fine grater that produces incredibly tiny shavings of hard ingredients. There is simply no better way to prepare ground nutmeg or cinnamon in a home kitchen than to use a microplane.
While electric grinders and mortar and pestle sets can be used to grind cinnamon sticks, they often struggle with the task. Neither of these grinder-types work at all for nutmeg, however. Whole nutmeg is just too large and hard to grind in most spice grinders.
A microplane, on the other hand, has no trouble with nutmeg and can quickly grate a stick of cinnamon. They are also useful for grating citrus rinds for zest, hard cheeses and chocolate. Microplanes are generally quite inexpensive and can easily fit into a kitchen drawer.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the best way to grind hard spices like cinnamon or nutmeg?
A: Cinnamon sticks can be broken into pieces and then ground in an electric grinder or mortar and pestle. It can sometimes be difficult to get an even grind, and you may want to sift the ground cinnamon through a fine screen to remove any oversized pieces.
Nutmeg is more challenging, however. The only grinders that work for nutmeg are microplanes or specially-designed nutmeg spice mills.
Q: Can you use an electric coffee grinder as a spice grinder?
A: No, you should buy a seperate grinder for spices and save your coffee grinder for coffee beans. Even with the best cleaning methods, a coffee grinder is going to pass on the aroma (and taste) of coffee to your ground spices. The spices can also leave behind traces of oils that could make your coffee taste strange. It is better to have separate appliances for grinding coffee and spices.
Q: What is the best way to clean a grinder?
A: It is best to contact the manufacturer of your spice grinder for their best cleaning recommendations. Many times you can simply wipe a grinder out with a pastry brush and a moist towel. Grinders that have removable bowls can be detached and washed in soap and water, or in the dishwasher. Mortar and pestles and microplanes can often be rinsed clean.
Another common way to clean a spice grinder is to use a couple of tablespoons of white rice. Place it in the grinder and reduce it to a powder. Brush the powder out, wipe with a cloth and you’re done. This works especially well for electric grinders and mortar and pestles when you need to use them immediately.
Q: What is the best type of spice grinder to buy?
A: It depends on what you want to use it for. Electric spice grinders are the fastest and easiest to use. Mortar and pestle sets offer the most versatility and the most amount of work on your part. Spice mills and microplanes are both very useful for grinding certain kinds of spices, if more limited than the other grinders. You may find that you need more than one type of spice grinder to cover all your options in the kitchen.
Q: Can you use an electric spice grinder to make a pesto or a wet rub?
A: In general, electric grinders don’t do very well with fresh ingredients unless they are specifically designed for that purpose. The liquids in these fresh foods could leak into the motor housing and damage the appliance. Electric grinders can make a fine spice powder but can’t handle making heavier, wetter mixtures. A mortar and pestle would be a better grinder for making these items.
Q: How do you measure whole spices to produce a specific amount of a ground spice?
A: This can be tricky. Every spice is going to have a unique conversion of whole-to-ground based on the size of the original spice and how finely you choose to grind it. You may need to specifically look up each spice to find its conversion calculation. However, here is a list of several commonly-used kitchen spices and how to calculate their whole-to-ground amounts.
The decision to buy a spice grinder is an easy one to make if you want to get the most value out of your spice collection. A spice grinder is an inexpensive way to maximize the flavor and aroma of your whole spices. Your meals will have a bolder and more complex taste when you grind the spices fresh at home.
Our detailed reviews should make it a breeze to pick the perfect appliance for your family. Whether you want an electric grinder or a classic mortar and pestle set our list has your needs covered.
Our Best Overall grinder, the Secura, can handle spices, seeds, nuts and grain and can even chop fresh vegetables. The removable-bowl design is user-friendly and easy to clean. The price is within the reach of most families and won’t break your budget.
Once you start preparing your own mixes you won’t want to go back to using pre-ground spices again. Purchase a spice grinder and have your food bursting with flavor.
We hope that after reading our detailed spice grinder reviews and comprehensive buying guide, you’ll have all the information you need to select the best spice grinder for your kitchen.