Buying Guides

Mr. Coffee Burr Grinder Review: Can It Grind Up The Competition?

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Mr. Coffee is one of the oldest and most well-known brands in the coffee business, but does their burr grinder stack up to the competition? Let’s take a closer look at the good and bad parts of this product to see if it can help you make that perfect cup.

Things To Consider Before Buying A Burr Grinder

Honestly, the only thing to consider before purchasing a burr grinder is what type of grinder you want. As we discuss in more detail on our guide to coffee grinders for french presses, burr grinders are the only way to get a truly great cup of coffee. Blade grinders, which produce uneven coffee grounds, are fundamentally inferior products regardless of price.

How Much Do Burr Settings Matter?

Burr settings only matter if you plan to use them. Plenty of products talk about having a variety of settings, but if you only need one level of coarseness, those other settings are functionally nonexistent.

As such, it’s better to look at how you drink coffee and whether or not you want a grinder that can do every setting well or just a grinder that can do one particular setting well. There’s no universal answer to this, but since low-setting grinders tend to be cheaper, this decision could affect your final cost.

Is Motorized Better Than Hand-Ground?

That’s debatable. One of our top picks is a hand grinder, and there’s certainly something to be said for doing it yourself. However, mechanical mills have the advantage of delivering consistent speed and force over time, which is especially useful when you need to make a lot of coffee.

I recommend motorized burr grinders like this one if you’re short on time, and hand grinders if you want to grind coffee in small amounts right before brewing a cup.

Product Overview

Mr. Coffee’s burr grinder is a motorized grinder capable of going from coarse to superfine. Its removable hopper allows you to comfortably grind up to 1/2 pound of coffee beans at a time, which is about forty-one standard 9-oz cups. Most people will grind fewer beans at a time for freshness, but I appreciate the option for bulk processing.

The manufacturer claims this product offers premium performance, with a focus on the uniform grind size that burr mills are known for. In practice, I find that it grinds better at the coarser levels, so it’s not as consistent as it could be.

Things We Like

  • A wide number of settings
  • The well-known manufacturer has plenty of replacement supplies
  • Capable of holding a large number of beans at any given time
  • Easy to clean

Room For Improvement

  • It does not grind equally well on all settings (coarser is better than finer here)
  • The bean hopper is not airtight, and therefore not suitable for long-term storage
  • Bean feed is gravity only, which can be inconsistent
  • Cheap materials in some places limit the overall quality of this product
Mr. Coffee Automatic Burr Mill Coffee Grinder with 18 Custom Grinders, Silver

Features & Benefits

Here are the major features and benefits to consider before buying this product.

Grinding Functions

This grinder has 18 settings ranging from coarse to extremely fine. It also has a setting to let you grind precisely how many cups of coffee you want, which helps avoid waste. In this case, a ‘cup’ of beans is about one tablespoon.

However, the point where the grinding functions really break down is on the espresso setting. The espresso setting on this machine is designed for use with their own steam espresso machine and is not quite fine enough to work with other products. In the practical sense, this machine does not grind for espresso, so buy something else if you want that setting.

You do have to manually adjust the bean hopper to the setting you want, but this isn’t a significant concern. All settings are labeled clearly, and the machine itself lets you know when things are correct.

Grounds And Storage

I like the large storage container on this product. Some burr grinders only hold a few tablespoons worth of coffee grounds at a time, and that’s not very useful if you want to brew in bulk. However, despite its size, there are a few flaws with this product.

Most notably, the coffee grounds often stick to the edge of the container and may spill out when you’re trying to transfer them. This is quite messy unless you’re very careful when transferring things, and a better design would alleviate most of these problems. In short, this product has its flaws when you’re trying to brew coffee quickly.

It may be better to grind your beans ahead of time, transfer them to a better container, and scoop directly out of that.

Cleaning

This is another noticeable issue. If it feels like there are a lot of issues with this product, well, there are. The Mr. Coffee burr grinder isn’t a fundamentally bad product, but it doesn’t do anything amazingly well, so it’s easier to notice and point out the flaws.

As an example, cleaning this machine is inconvenient. You must unscrew and remove the hopper to clean the burrs, which means you also have to empty the beans into another container. This is ultimately slower and less efficient than it could be, and there’s no real excuse for the lack of convenience given the current state of the market.

Pricing

This is one area where Mr. Coffee’s burr grinder does well. It’s not just more affordable than most of the competition; it’s also more affordable than many blade grinders currently on the market. For budget-conscious buyers, that makes this instantly better than literally any blade grinder on the market.

Price is also an important consideration for replacements. You may need to replace this product more often than another grinder, but if it costs less than half as much, you could end up saving money over time.

Noise

This is a relatively loud grinder. Of course, all motorized grinders produce noise to some extent, so it’s hard to consider this a unique downside. The only truly quiet grinders are hand grinders. The main reason I bring this up is that making a lot of noise when making coffee could be an issue in some apartment buildings, or if you live with someone else and they want to sleep in.

I want people to enjoy coffee, and if they’re irritable from being woken up by an engine running, they won’t like any brew as much as they could. You can alleviate a lot of the potential issues by grinding coffee well ahead of time.

Mr. Coffee Automatic Burr Mill Coffee Grinder with 18 Custom Grinders, Silver

Optimal Product Use

On that note, grinding ahead of time is easily the best way to use this particular product. Issues like the lack of airtight seals and the overall volume while operating it means this isn’t a great product for grinding one or two cups worth of beans at a time. Instead, grinding lots of beans and then storing them elsewhere works out better.

Honestly, I see this as more of a positive quality than a negative one, and here’s why: I like minimizing how much effort I need to put into making my coffee on an average morning. Setting up a machine, adjusting the settings, trying to avoid spilling the ground coffee… all of that is extra work, and it takes away from time I could be spending brewing.

Grinding in bulk ahead of time does more than minimizing how much time I have to spend in the morning. It also makes it easy to grind different levels of coarseness so I can simply scoop out whatever I want in the morning. For a coffee lover, simplified access to drinks is fundamentally better.

Materials And Build Quality

Mr. Coffee’s burr grinder is essentially an entry-level product, which means keeping the price as low as possible is one of the main design goals. I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, since burr grinders are the only way to get genuinely good coffee, having entry-level products is essential. On the other hand, these can make it break down much sooner.

The biggest problem with the materials and the build quality of this product is the way that coffee grounds can get inside the machine and dirty it up. Cleaning can be difficult because of the various exposed electronics, and the generous use of plastic means it’s a bit too easy for things to deform and move out of shape.

In the practical sense, this product is likely to work for a year or two of reasonably consistent use, then clog up and fail. Mr. Coffee provides a limited 1-year warranty on this product regardless of where you buy it, so you do have some coverage if your model fails early.

Size

The Mr. Coffee burr grinder is on the large side for products in this category at 8.4 x 7.9 x 12.9 inches. The height is comparable to other grinders and fits well in most kitchen storage areas, but it is a little thicker than most.

I’ve seen high-quality burr grinders with about half the length and width of this product, which is a significant difference in an industry where sizes don’t change much.

The reason for this is that most of the actual equipment is on the back half of the unit, while the front is a large storage container that noticeably sticks out from the rest of the machine. This is a contrast from other machines, which tend to have smoother fronts and thicker tops with smaller bean hoppers.

Inches do matter in most kitchens, so measure the amount of space you have before buying any coffee grinder. The good news is that at just four pounds, not including another half-pound or so of beans in the hopper, this grinder is lightweight and easy to put up if you can’t leave it out. That’s one area where its cheaper materials are a positive rather than a negative.

Technical Support

Mr. Coffee is a known and enduring brand, with a consistent presence in the market since about 1970. Under its parent company Newell Brands (which also sells Elmer’s glue, Rubbermaid food storage containers, and Crock-Pot brand slow cookers), it’s a stable company capable of providing a steady supply of parts and technical support for users.

This is particularly helpful because the lower overall product quality here when compared to other burr grinders, means that technical problems are a realistic possibility. A company can’t provide assistance on a warranty if it no longer exists, so there is some value to buying from a stable and consistent company.

Alternatives & Conclusion

With all factors evaluated, the Mr. Coffee burr grinder is an affordable mid-range machine. Several issues stop it from being a top-quality or highly-recommended product, but its extraordinarily competitive pricing makes it a good first option for budget-conscious buyers.

Accordingly, I give this a review of good, but not great. It will get the job done for most people, and it’s a great introductory machine for learning how to brew coffee, but it’s not quite good enough for serious users. Here are some alternative coffee grinders to consider.

If you want to grind a small number of coffee beans at a time without making noise, consider the Hand Ground Precision Manual Coffee Grinder. This unit has 15 settings for fineness and a conical burr mill that helps achieve a consistent grind, although it’s not a great choice for grinding up coffee beans in bulk.

For a better-motorized grinder, the Capresso 560.01 Infinity Conical Burr Grinder generally has better materials and durability, though noticeably fewer grinding options than the Mr. Coffee model. It’s also significantly more expensive, so I can’t recommend this product unless you want to make a lot of coffee.

On Sale

Finally, if you want to get this machine and you also want to have espresso, check out our guide to Mr. Coffee espresso machines. These are significantly more compatible than espresso makers from other manufacturers and can make all the difference when you’re trying to brew a great cup.

 

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