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About Burr Coffee Grinders – From Basic to Purchase


As a cappuccino fan, you might ask why you need a burr grinder for coffee. Well, a reliable cup of beverage requires a perfect foundation. In the case of caffeine, we can say the coffee makers with bean grinders are the most important part of the whole system. As long as you are using a burr coffee grinder, you will always get the best results.

Burr mills can chop the coffee beans into perfect and evenly shaped particles. However, certain things make these types of grinding machines the best, and also certain things make them worse. So, to give you a full grasp of everything, I will talk about coffee grinder burr.

Starting with an overview of burr grinders and then we are going to suggest you with a buyer guideline. Make sure you are ready to know about everything there is to it about burr grinder. Because even if burr grinding machines are not cheap, they are the right way to get your perfect cup of beverage.

What is Burr Grinder?

Basically, the burr grinder is made of two different abrasive surfaces. These surfaces are typically known as burrs. So, in these grinding machines, there is one moving part and another steady surface. Yes, the beans are being crushed between a moving wheel and a non-moving surface. Indeed, it has the upper hand over a blade grinding machine.

As of now, you know that there are three main types of grinders available – burr models, blade models, and manual models. To be honest, any manual coffee maker comes with a blade or burr inside. In other words, we can just think about two types of grinders available in the market.

Blade grinders are inexpensive solutions for coffee geeks. On the contrary, burr models provide the best grind size for the beans. Anyway, these coffee makers are possibly the best for commercial entities. More than that, we shall discuss more the coffee grinder in this content. For now, we can say, these types of coffee grinders are expensive but they are the best machines for making good beverages.

Benefits of burr grinder:

To understand the benefits of any burr coffee brewer, we must compare it with the blade grinding devices. Otherwise, it is tough to explain the good parts. Yes, in this part, we are comparing burr grinders with blade grinding devices so that you understand the benefits of the device.

Better than a blade grinder:

A blade grinder is an inaccurate way to grind the beans. Because the physics behind blades is not going along with it. When it comes to a blade grinder, the blade is not getting the perfect cut. Matter of fact, the blade is always trying to chop the beans in the center. Yes, they can get the job done for you but not that good. However, it won’t be able to get you better results every time. No matter how many times you shake the jar or try to get a better grind – it won’t work.

When the blade inside is spinning, the grind near the center will be fine. But the spin is not enough to grind the beans outside the center of the blade. Because of that, we find different grind sizes on our cappuccino. So, even after being expensive, burr models are far superior to blade models. Especially, if you like to enjoy fresh and exclusive coffee, burr machines are your top priority.

Get rich flavor:

To understand the flavors, you need to know about the coffee beans’ anatomy. In the case of coffee beans, there are two seeds side by side. And without going to further details, there are four main parts of the bean – outer skin (pericarp), silver skin, parchment, and pulp.

Considering the parts, the outer skin is always going to be tough. On the other hand, all the flavors are resting inside the pulp and parchment. When you are using a blade grinding machine, the good parts will dissolve real quickly. The possible reason for this is the fact that blade models are very fast.

Just like I said, the good parts will dissolve fast in blade models and the rough parts will dissolve late. This is bad because you are not getting a good blend or mix. So, after you get all the grind, the good ones are crushed into small particles and the less flavored parts are on top of them. For this reason, you will get wild flavors on your beverage. But burr grinders are keeping the grind and coarse together and dissolves them slowly. This is why these grinders offer much better flavors.

Get a good grind size and proper outcome:

So, now you can see how you are not getting the full flavor with your blade grinding device. Another important thing burr grinding devices offer is the grind size. Yes, grind size is equally important to squeeze out the goods from the beans.

But how come these models offer this handicap? Quite simple actually, as you need to know how it crushes the beans. Well, to begin with, you need to know about the types of burr grinders available in the market. No need to worry, we will discuss them later in this conversation. But first, let’s discuss how you get the perfect grind from such a model.

In the case of burr grinders, two main parts are working with your beans. One is always moving, or should I say spinning. And the other part is a stable surface. After you put the beans inside the grinder, the stable surface will start to collect the smaller particles. Afterward, it will start pushing the larger particles in front of the outside burr.

After coming into contact with the spinning burr, the rest of the bean particles will crush into a smaller size. So, unlike blade grinders, all the coffee particles are on the move. Thus, you will find a refined coarse and grind from the grinding machine.


Burr grinding devices offer much better control over your grind size and flavors. With a powerful model, you may think faster grinding is the solution. No, rather, slow grinding is the key to better flavor. These models are slow and provide optimum performance.

Maintaining and cleaning is another handicap for burr models. When you are purchasing the best coffee grinder for any commercial cafe, going for the burr models will always prove you smart. Not just the cafe, you can get one even for your home.

 Different parts of the burr coffee grinder:

Before we show you how the burr grinder works, you need to understand the hardware parts of the device. Without understanding the different parts of the device, it is always going to be tough to know the working process.

First of all, if we think about it, there are two sections in the grinder. One is the outer part, and the other one is the burr part. The outer part mainly consists of controls, bean hopper, and funnel. This part is always visible to the user consisting of the following parts:

  • Bean Hopper (not every model comes with a bean hopper)
  • Settings indicator
  • Adjustment scale
  • Pulse button
  • Timer

And after that comes the burr hardware. There are two types of burr available in the market for coffee grinding. The burr has some simple construction if you think about it. In case for the best grind for cold brew, there are the following sections:

  • Grind adjustment ring
  • Grind adjustment tab
  • Center burr
  • Silicone burr protective seal
  • Removable ring burr
  • Alignment and removing bars

Alongside these sections, both parts are very important.

How do burr grinders work?

You know, fresh grind cappuccino offers better taste than any pre-grind coffee. A grinding machine is a device that will help you to get a fresh and coarse grind. After a lot of considerations, the burr grinding machine is best in terms of grind, performance, and many more.

However, have you ever thought about how the machine works? Probably you have not like it’s really easy to operate. There is also another important question, why should you try to know that? Quite simple, by knowing that, you will be able to understand any problems with the grinder. It will also give you foresight in getting the best grind.

Burr models operate by crushing or pulverizing the beans in small particles. Thus, you will finely grind cappuccino, and the size of the particles will be consistent. We have discussed the basics earlier. A bean has several parts, and the harder parts are hard to cut. When you get even particle size, every portion of the beans can stay even.

It’s just like oil and water, where the oil will always float over the water. But when it comes to solid products, the small coffee particles will start to go down, and the rough parts will stay on the top. So, you are not getting an even mix on the beans. Most of the time, when you get a cup of beverage, it will have wild flavors.

For the coffee grinder commercial, the grinding wheels are the most important part. We will talk about the two different grinding wheels after this part, so don’t get worked up. In any burr device, sharp cutting equipment alongside precision adjustments gives it all the upper hands. Yes, you also have different speed settings and adjustment options to smash any cappuccino. So, in the case of burr models, you have full control over your grind.

Not just that, burr models are slow. Well, you might ask, why slow is a good thing? When it comes to your cappuccino beans, rough chopping will never do you any good. Rather, it will ruin the flavor and the quality of the beans. Yes, the motor of the coffee brewer provides all the power to get a perfect grind. If the grinding wheels are speeding very fast, the motor will start to get hot. Not to mention, you will get rough chops on the beans.

Anyway, the heat of the motor can sometimes ruin the flavor of the coffee. Heating issues always melt your coffee particles, and you don’t get enough flavor. Bean oils will stay inside the burr and cause problems for you.


Types of Burr Coffee grinder:

There are two coffee grinder types of burr grinding machines available in the market. As of now, you understand that a burr grinding device uses a static surface and a spinning wheel to crush the beans. However, the difference in types is selected by the grinding wheel type. Yes, because of the difference in the grinding wheel, you get two types of burr grinders. So, now we need to have a good look at the two grinders so that you can understand them a little bit more.

Conical Burr Grinder:

Probably, these models are the best in the burr category. When anyone is looking for a French press grinder, conical devices offer the best support. One thing about them is the price. Yes, they are very expensive but gets the job done perfectly. Just like we said in the earlier part of this conversation, we divide them into two types because of the grinding wheels.

In the case of the coffee grinder KitchenAid, the grinding wheel is divided into two different sections. All burr grinder has a moving and a static surface. So, in terms of the conical model, the moving part is just like a cone. On the other hand, the static version is there to push all your beans to the conical or spinning part.

Afterward, the spinning section will crush the coffee beans into different sizes. Fracturing the coffee beans is not the end of the story. The beans are fractured in the conical part.

After being crushed in the conical part, the beans will fall into the next size blades. Finally, when the beans are falling through the void of burr teeth – you get much reliable grind and coarse. Conical models feature a powerful motor and are slow. For any grinder device, you better look for a model that is slow. And conical models are very slow. Not to mention, these grinders create less mess after your coarse grind.

Wheel or Flat disc burr grinder:

Well, these are less expensive than the conical grinding device. In this machine, there’s a grinding wheel or disc. The grinding process is quite similar to the conical burrs. But here, the static surface or moving surface is flat. You will put the coffee in it, and it will start to crush the beans.

However, how can flat surface crush beans evenly? There are pushing arms in the base of the grinding wheel. So, the flat surface is crushing the beans into small particles and pushing them towards the burr. Personally, I am a big fan of the wheel coffee grinder.

First of all, wheel burrs are slightly better than the conical ones. Still, these devices make a loud noise and create a lot of mess. The only flaws are these things but conical ones will have a slight edge over the performance. We will compare them later on.

Conical vs Flat burr grinders:

Burr models prioritize pressure over chopping the beans. As a result, you find a few tiny particles on your grind. And that’s why the flavor is always so good on your cup. However, as of now, you know the grinding wheels are the real deal in terms of burr models.

Earlier, we have talked about the main two types of burr grinding devices. Yes, there is a difference between the two, and commonly many people just don’t understand the difference.

There are multiple reasons behind the confusion as people just don’t understand the burr structure. But we have talked about the burr grinding wheels structure, and that’s not about it. First, there are other differences between conical and flathead models. Now we are going to discuss some important differences between the two models.

Grind Consistency:

Getting the perfect grind is not easy as long as you don’t assemble the machine perfectly. In any burr grinder, you need to assemble the grinder into a perfect parallel and concentration. When you do that, the particle size will be perfect. Well, personally I like conical models. However, flat burr models are a little better than conical burrs.

The reason behind that is simple, flat burrs require no concentration. As a result, you are getting good results whenever you put all the beans inside. In terms of grind consistency, flat burrs have a slight edge over the conical burrs. Not just that, if you can’t make the perfect alignment on your conical burr, the grind particle will not be consistent enough.

Industry-standard Conical Burr and Espresso coffee grinder:

Flat wheel burrs are relatively smaller in size. So, you won’t find them in any cafe even if you want to. However, flat wheel burrs are great for making the best espresso for any house. Conical burr is just like a cone and on the other hand, wheel burrs come with a donut shape.

In the case of conical burrs, you will always get two distinct grind sizes on the machine. One will be small and the other will be larger. No matter how much you try, there will always be two different grind sizes. However, conical burrs take less time and pulverize the beans slowly. That’s why there is less heat from the machine. On the other hand, flat models take a long time and heat more. So, you cannot run flat wheel grinders in any industrial cafe.

Coffee retention and contamination:

By coffee retention, we mean how much grind will stay in the grinder. When it comes to conical burr, it requires less mechanical force for pulverizing the bean. Flat burr models use a lot of mechanical power and the stale grind will mix with the fresh ones. On the other hand, when the coffee powder stays stuck with the surface is called retention. Conical burr ones offer less retention.


One thing for sure, flat burrs are pricier than conical burr models. Well, yes, conical burrs are quieter, powerful, and gets the job complete. However, they are not that convenient in producing reliable grinds. On the other hand, flat burrs do make a lot of sounds and heat up real quick. However, if you want to extract all the goods out of your beans – going for the wheel burr is always the best choice. Many flat burrs feature proper ventilation which enables the machine to cool down while grinding.


Things to consider before choosing the type of burr model you want:

From the very start, I have talked about the types and categories of any burr grinders. After reading all the way through, you can guess that it’s not just about the grinding wheel size that matters. Rather, you have to make a smart move on picking the right design and options. Do you want a conical one or a flat burr – that solely depends on where you are going to use your grinding machine?

Even burr grinders have two categories – one with the motor and the other is a manual burr grinder. Well, we can say that manual burr coffee grinders are completely different types of things. However, some manual grinders feature burr grinding wheels.  Don’t get the wrong idea – when we are mentioning burr grinders, we mean conical and flat burrs. Yes, you can go for the manual one if you like. But for getting the best grind, you will need to rely on the motor.

Understand your working space:

Before looking for the best grind for coffee, you better think about how much space you’ll be working with. Whether you are living in any small or large house, you better have a good idea about your kitchen appliances. Otherwise, your workspace will turn into a mess. One thing for sure, no grinder is not very large. You can fit them on the countertop or just store them after use. Understanding your workspace is very important.

Replaceable parts:

Buying the best coffee grinder for pour-over are pretty expensive for many people.  You can’t expect to buy another model if the previous one is broken. That is not economic at the least. So, you have to look for a model that offers you missing parts.

Or at least you will be able to find the replaceable parts in the local stores. For the missing parts, you can include these things:

  • Screws
  • Handles
  • Grinding settings mechanism
  • Burr’s teeth
  • Spinning wheels
  • catcher drawer
  • bean container

There are some other parts you may want to find such as the motors and other stuff. But the motor is always the main part. Missing or replaceable parts are not that pricey compared to the motors and heavy parts. Available spare parts can save your cash by a margin. Bodum burr grinder or oxo coffee grinder offers replaceable parts.

Burr condition and construction material:

For the coffee maker that grinds beans, its condition is the top priority all the time. Because, without the burr to back you up, you may end up just crushing the beans and nothing more. Grinders are not just for pulverizing your coffee beans. It’s about bringing out all the flavors from your beverage.

But there are some other factors considering the burr model. Excessively dull or cheap burrs are not good for any price range. The structure of the burr and endurance is the key to your product. How can you decide the endurance of the burr? By checking out the construction material of the burr, of course. Most burrs are made of metal or steel. However, when they have faster speed, they tend to heat a lot.

Depending on the type of grinding wheel burr you get, the construction material is important. Nowadays, many burrs are made of ceramic. Ceramic is much stronger than steel and can reduce the heating issue. Keep these things in mind before you purchase your burr grinder.

Another condition for the burr is the rust-resistance. Vintage burrs have wooden construction and you won’t find vintage models anywhere. So, when you are purchasing a coffee grinder coarse maker with steel burrs, you better check whether it’s rust-resistant or not.

Noise, heating issue, and dosing

Noise is not going to ruin your coffee’s flavor but it can disrupt the peaceful kitchen environment. So, looking for a noiseless model is also very important. After that, comes the heating issue.

Yes, heat can always ruin the flavors and aroma of the coffee. And the heating issue can be caused by the motor and the speed of the burr grinding machine. In the case of the heating issue, you better look for a model that comes with a proper ventilator.

The next thing is the dosing. Dosing means how the coffee grinder will distribute the particles once it’s ground. Doser can always let you have much fresher coffee than just keeping the grind particle inside a chamber.

Look for a slower model:

As of now, you can tell that going faster is not the best solution for grinding cappuccino. Find a model that offers a relatively slow grinding process and offers reliable grind size. This way, you can reduce the heating and contamination issue by a margin.

Maintenance for your burr coffee grinder:

Without maintaining your best coffee grinder for the French press, you cannot get fresh grind coffee. Because, without a proper clean setup and perfect alignment of the grinder, you are likely to create a lot of mess. Most of the time, there will be cappuccino bean oils in the hopper or grind chamber.

So, you need to organize or maintain your burr grinder the right way. For that, you need to consider two important things – keeping the burrs clean and giving the whole machine a deep clean. We are going to talk about them separately in this part.

Maintaining the burrs:

Most burrs are made of steel and that is why you cannot keep them wet. Also, when you are pulverizing beans, the oil and other nutrients will remain in the burr. Regular grinding can always build coffee dust and oil over time.

So, if you want to clean the burr, you have no choice but to disassemble the machine. However, there is another way you can clean your burrs coffee dust and oils. Using rice grains is a good solution.

The rice grains method has its own benefits and losses. It can sometimes hamper your warranty and other things. To be sure, you should check the user manual first. When you try to pulverize rice grains, it will push away the dust and soak all the oils. This way, you can clean the burrs without the need for disassembling the grinder.

Tips on cleaning your burr grinder – additional deep clean

You should try to give your bed bath and beyond coffee grinder a deep clean once in a while. Yes, you can use dry rice grains to clean your grinder. However, the user still needs to disassemble the grinding machine for a deep clean. So, now we are going to give you a step by step grinder cleaning tips:

Starting with the disassemble

First, you need to disassemble the whole machine. Make sure all the power connection is off, otherwise the device will have major power problems. At the very beginning, remove the hopper and the grinding chamber. After that, try to clean them using a coffee filter or lint-free cloth.

Be gentle with your cleaning and wipe out the oils and coffee dust. Sometimes, the oils can be stubborn and won’t budge from the spot. Use mild soapy water to clean the hopper and coffee chamber. Also, there are many grinder cleaning products out there that you can use. Another way is to clean them in a dishwasher. But the components need to be dishwasher safe.

Cleaning the Burr:

Cleaning the grinder espresso will be the most difficult task for you. To clean the part you will need toothpicks, compressed air, vacuum, brush, or lint-free cloths. You can disassemble the outer portion and do not separate the inner portion. Because the inner part is very hard to separate.

Assemble the grinder:

Clean-up will take at least 15 to 20 minutes and after cleaning, assemble the grinding machine. Make sure you get the alignment right and always rely on the user manual.


  • Should I use water to clean my burr grinder?

Try to rinse water rather than using water. Otherwise, the motor will get wet.

  • Can’t I just try the rice grain cleaning method?

This is a good way to clean your burr grinding machine but it has some disadvantages like hampering your warranty. Even if you use the rice grain method, you will have to go for a deep clean once in a month.

  • What is a burr grinder?

A burr grinder is a type of grinder where they use a burr to pulverize the beans. Mainly, the grinding machine has a moving part and a static surface to smash the beans into fine particles.

  • Why are burr grinders expensive?

Mainly for the features and performance, the coffee grinder manual is often expensive. From top to bottom, these machines are best for providing reliable grind size and coffee flavor. That’s why they are expensive.

  •   Is a flat burr better than a conical burr?

In terms of performance, and grinding quality, flat wheel grinders have a slight edge over conical grinders.

  • Conical burr or blade grinding machine – which one to pick?

Blade grinders are an inaccurate way to smash your beans. Even if conical burrs are in the budget range, you should always go for burr models.

  • Which conical burr is the best one in the market?

Baratza encore conical burr coffee grinder is currently the perfect fit for you.

  • What makes burr grinder a better one?

You have control over the grind size and the flavor will remain intact in a burr grinder.


 Final Verdict:

This was a long conversation about cappuccino brewing machines. For a long time, coffee is one of the best beverages in the world. Not to mention, people want to get fresh flavors while enjoying a cup. Owning a coffee grinder can help you enjoy your beverage. However, burr coffee grinders are the best way to grind your exotic beans. There are many things one needs to understand about grinders.

A simple machine, but there are a lot of daunting things around it. Today, we tried to tell you all there is to it about burr grinding machines. Now, if you are ready to buy a burr model for your kitchen, we are hoping you can choose just the best coffee grinder for espresso.