An entry-level espresso grinder is perfect for users considering branching into making espresso at home, but also want to grind coffee for other brewing methods, like French press or drip.
We’ve selected five of the best espresso grinders for beginners, all of which are versatile machines that offer consistent grinds, whether you’re making espresso or cold brew.
Our selections are all based on feedback delivered to our staff from customers, verified buyer reviews online, and rigorous product testing.
Read on for our recommendations of the best entry level home espresso grinders of 2023, or, if you prefer, you can watch a video with all this information here.
KitchenAid Burr Grinder
KitchenAid’s all purpose conical burr grinder's candy apple red housing looks great on a counter, and its 70 stepped grind settings range from fine grinding for espressos to coarser grinds for drip and French press brewing.
The automatic smart dosing technology automatically adjusts grind time when changing the grind size, number of cups, or number of shots of espresso you’re grinding for.
The hefty 10.5 oz bean hopper automatically closes when removed and the grounds are delivered accurately into the resealable bin, so there’s less mess all around.
Though KitchenAid’s Burr Grinder is housed in plastic, it feels solid. At its price point, it’s an excellent option for anyone looking to begin their journey as a home barista.
Fellow’s Opus grinder is a brand-new option for 2023. The 40mm conical burr grinder has 41 stepped grind settings, plus 4 micro-adjustment grades per step for ground coffee from cold brew coarse to espresso fine.
The Opus is the only grinder on our list specifically designed for single dosing, so you can keep your beans fresher. While there’s no portafilter fork, it does come with a dosing cup to quickly transfer grounds without a mess. Speaking of no mess, the magnetic grounds container locks into place so you won’t have grounds flying all over the place.
This single-button grinder is not only supremely easy to use, it offers timed dosing and is relatively quiet. It’s the slowest of the bunch at .6–.7 grams per second, but don’t let that deter you: Fellow’s Opus is a quality grinder that will serve any new home barista well.
Baratza Encore ESP
Like the Opus, Baratza’s Encore ESP offers 41 stepped settings to grind your coffee beans for everything from espresso to cold brew. This is a simple machine: a single button operates the grinder, or you can flip a switch on the side for constant grinding.
The hopper feeds your beans into the 40mm conical burrs which grind directly into the dosing cup at 1.2 grams per second.
Though a bit louder than the Opus, the Encore ESP has the smallest footprint of all the grinders on this list, so it’s perfect for small counter spaces.
Eureka Mignon Facile
While Eureka’s Mignon Facile espresso grinder represents a jump in price from the first three grinders on our list, sometimes you really do get what you pay for.
This is one of those times.
Just from picking it up, you can tell the Facile is built from something tougher than the other grinders on our list—and it is. The aluminum housing isn’t the only upgrade either: the Facile sports 50mm flat burrs instead of conical ones, which results in a much cleaner tasting espresso. It also has full stepless micrometric adjustments so you can dial in your grind much more accurately.
The Facile can be used to grind coffee for all sizes, but truly shines when grinding for an espresso machine. The microswitch activates grinding when a portafilter or cup is placed below the chute to dispense grounds mess-free at 1.3 grams per second.
This is the quietest grinder on our list, and is beloved by customers, earning an average of 4.9 stars from verified buyers. The Mignon Facile is a machine-grade grinder that will last years if cared for properly—a perfect choice for anyone looking to get into home espresso brewing without needing to upgrade their grinder anytime soon.
Baratza Sette 270
Baratza’s Sette 270 grinder sacrifices the machine-grade build quality of the Facile for some added bells and whistles that make its plastic housing forgivable.
The Sette 270 has conical burrs, but the ring burr spins while the cone burr remains fixed; the result is double the grinding surface. This means Sette 270 grinds at 3.7 grams per second—by far the fastest on our list.
The grounds come out fluffy and clump free, and the forks allow you to grind directly into a portafilter or dosing cup. Not fully stepless, the Sette 270 splits the difference: stepped macro adjustments can be further dialed in with steppeless micro adjustments for excellent grind consistency.
Though this is the loudest grinder on our list, the Sette 270 does offer the ability to pre-program 3 different grind times to get measured doses at the push of a button.
The Sette 270 is perfect for anyone who prioritizes high speed grinding and timed dosing and doesn’t mind the plastic housing.
The Best Espresso Grinder for Beginners
If you’re looking to begin your journey as a home espresso barista, you really can’t go wrong with any of the grinders on our list. They all offer quality builds, consistent grinds, and the versatility to be used for all sorts of coffee drinks, from espresso to French press.
If you still have questions about which grinder is best for your home setup, feel free to reach out to our knowledgeable staff for assistance at (585) 924–7170, option 1. Or, schedule a coffee cast for a live demonstration of the grinder (or espresso machine) of your choice!
What type of grinder is best for espresso?
Espresso nerds tend to prefer a flat burr grinder that allows for steppeless micro adjustments of the grind size. This is because the desired grind size will change depending on the machine and coffee you’re using. Ultimately, the grinder that allows you to adjust the grind size in as minute increments as possible will be the “best” for grinding espresso beans.
What is the best grind for espresso beans?
The best grind size depends on the espresso beans and espresso machine you’ll be using, as well as your preferred taste. As a general rule, espresso beans should be ground fine compared to those used in a drip coffee machine or French press.
Do you need a specific grinder for espresso?
If you want to grind coffee beans fine enough to be used in an espresso machine, you’ll need a grinder capable of doing that. Most blade grinders probably won’t cut it; you’ll want to invest in a burr grinder capable of grinding to a fine-salt-like texture.