The Best Herb Grinder for Your Precision Spice Grinding
Out among the sea of mediocre and inferior grinders, it is still possible for the tasteful chef to find the best herb grinder. He knows the importance of a fine spice or herb.
Hence, for the most flavorful and fragrant dishes, only the best herb grinder will do. However, are herbs and spices important enough to require a unique device?
All chefs and serious cooks know that herbs often make or break a dish. On other occasions, they can lift and freshen an otherwise bland and boring meal. In fact, herbs and spices are integral to many cuisines and define the diet of many cultures.
These fragrant ingredients are typically concentrated and dried for maximum shelf-life without flavor loss.
Consequently, chefs and cooks also know that once a spice or herb is ground, its flavors, fragrance, and even nutrients, begin to decrease.
This loss of the ingredient’s inherent qualities is the reason why you’ll seldom find pre-ground spices in professional kitchens. Therefore, for optimal freshness and little flavor loss, we’ve reviewed five of the best herb grinders.
*Below, you can read more our detailed reviews for each above Grind and Brew Coffee Maker.
Your Guide to Herb Grinders
1. The Herb Grinder
An herb grinder is a cylindrical grinding device that often has two or more chambers or sections. The first chamber is made up of two pieces, the lid, and compartment, both containing sharp or serrated teeth.
These pegs are responsible for shredding and grinding. Succeeding chambers, typically separated by screens, hold the resulting ground material in varying levels of fineness.
Depending on brand and manufacturer, grinders are available in a variety of designs, materials, sizes, and number of sections.
2. How It Works
When you rotate and twist the first chamber, the teeth of the grinder shreds and grounds the material. The ground material subsequently enters the next chamber through small holes.
The remaining chambers then separate the ground elements between fine screens. These screens filter the grounds in varying fineness.
For instance, a grinder will have one chamber for grinding, another for medium-ground material, and finally the last chamber for the finely-ground.
Characteristics and Features
So, what exactly should you look for and check when deciding to get the best herb grinder? We’ll discuss these features below.
As you scour for herb grinders in shops, or online (where there are better deals and bargains), you’ll notice that they come in a variety of materials (metal, wood, or acrylic,...)
Like many other kitchen tools, the material of the grinder will determine its efficiency, ease of use, and durability. Therefore, you should consider these options carefully as the quality of your herbs and the lifespan of the herb grinder depends on them !
2. Grinder Teeth
The number and shape of an herb grinder’s teeth determine the outcome of your spices and herbs.
The best herb grinders typically have more teeth which will more thoroughly grind your ingredients. On the other hand, we find that diamond-shaped teeth are the best option for herb grinders.
Additionally, great teeth design and the number will mean a smoother grinding motion, hence less fatigue for you.
The best filter or screen size for an herb grinder is subjective to your preferences. It’s wise to consider this feature, though, as screen size will vary among grinders, especially three-piece models. So, if you prefer a fine ground, find those with finer screens.
Furthermore, some grinders feature detachable screens which improve the ease of cleaning these parts.
Another feature that will depend on your preferences is the overall size of the herb grinder. Larger her grinders are, naturally, capable of grinding more ingredients, but are heavier and less portable than smaller-sized grinders.
Therefore, a large grinder may be ideal only for home use while a small grinder will be perfect or those who want a more portable product.
5. Number of Pieces
Herb grinders are available in two or more pieces. A standard two-piece herb grinder includes the lid and the compartment for the material. Both cover and compartment have teeth for grinding.
Don’t confuse the number of chambers or compartments to the number of pieces making up an herb grinder! Remember that a single-chamber grinder is made up of two parts – the grinding section and the chamber that receives the ground material.
Here’s how they differ :
Two-piece herb grinders, as mentioned, have only one compartment where you would place, grind, and retrieve the spice.
This type of grinder has two pieces, namely the lid and the herb compartment, both sporting pegs and teeth for shredding and grinding. These type of grinders are typically cheaper, as they have the fewer parts.
Three-piece herb grinders have the same parts as two-piece grinders with the addition of another compartment or chamber. A filter wall separates this second chamber.
Therefore, you would grind material in the first chamber then collect the ground pieces in the second chamber. Retrieving the ground material, then, will be easier with a three-piece grinder.
Naturally, a three-piece grinder will cost more than a two-piece grinder. The drawback, however, to two-piece and three-piece grinders is that the resulting ground material will be a mix of varying levels of fineness.
Some grounds, for example, will be minced while others will be finely-ground.
A four-piece herb grinder, on the other hand, addresses the problem of uneven grounds. This grinder includes another chamber that further filters the ground material via fine screen, with much smaller holes than the three-piece grinder.
Hence, the ground material goes into two levels of fineness – coarsely ground material in one chamber and finely ground material in the second chamber.
Ultimately, four-piece herb grinders cost the most, and for a good reason. The grinder’s fine screen and the additional chamber will give chefs and cooks precise control over their ground ingredients.
Finally, consider as well the kinds of herbs or spices that you will be using with your herb grinder.
Similar to other types of grinding and crushing equipment, such as mortar and pestle, graters, and electric grinders, herb grinders will do a great job with special herbs and spices but will yield a less attractive outcome for others.
Note, though, that this is not a definitive study on the ideal spices and herbs for your grinder. These were merely the ones we’ve used and tested.
We found that the best-dried seasonings to use with an herb grinder are:
- Rock Salt or large chunks of Sea Salt
- Star Anise
Lastly, due to the herb grinders construction, smaller or thinner spices than those mentioned above are not recommended for this type of food grinder.
However, bigger herbs and spices besides those mentioned will be okay, that is, provided they fit in the grinder.
Our 5 Best Herb Grinder
Details of Platinum Grinders - Herb Grinder with Pollen Catcher
- 4-piece grinder
- Aircraft-grade aluminum
- 49 Diamond-shaped teeth
- Stainless steel filter
- Neodymium magnets
- Scratch-resistance finish
- We noticed no flaking or chipping during use.
- Incredibly durable construction
- Great value for its price and the product you will be purchasing
- Grinding process was very smooth.
- Magnetized compartments effectively kept herb odors from leaking.
- The tradeoff to its stable build is in its relatively heavy (12oz) weight.
- The filter screen may be too subtle for some.
Details of Golden Bell Spice Herb Grinder
- 4-piece grinder
- Heavy duty zinc alloy
- Mesh filter
- Magnetized lid
- Diamond-shaped teeth
- Compact and sleek design
- The grinder is incredibly light at 0.3 ounces, hence portability is a breeze.
- The magnetized lid is great at sealing in odors.
- Relatively weaker teeth since we had difficulty grinding tougher spices.
- This grinder yields a relatively coarser ground than other grinders on our list.
- The screen allows coarser grounds through compared to others.
- Its compact size means shallower chambers as opposed to other grinder chambers.
Details of Chromium Crusher Tobacco Spice Herb Grinder - Gun Metal
- 4-piece grinder
- Zinc Alloy Construction
- Magnetized lid
- Mesh Filter
- Modern aesthetics
- Lightweight design that is ideal for travel
- Grinding can be smoother but still acceptable.
- The build is not as solid as other grinders
- There are times when the chambers are difficult to separate.
- The paint on the outside has the tendency to chip and flake.
- The magnet construction is flimsy.
- Although in our top 5, these grinder is the least durable on our list.
4. Zip Grinders - Large Herb Grinder - Four Piece with Pollen Catcher - 3.25 Inches Tall - Premium Grade Aluminum (2.5", Black)
Details of Zip Grinders - Large Herb Grinder with Pollen Catcher
- 4-piece grinder
- 49 diamond-shaped teeth
- Aerospace-grade aluminum
- Transparent acrylic windows
- Anodized color-coating
- Neodymium magnets
- 100 micron stainless mesh screen
- The large size means bigger and deeper chambers
- Remarkably durable and sturdy
- It can hold approximately six heaping tablespoons.
- The center chamber can be removed for a more compact profile, so it is still portable.
- The grinder also works well with fresh herbs.
- The smoothest and most powerful grinding
- The Zip grinder’s only potential drawback is the acrylic window which is much less durable than the rest of the body.
Details of Cali Crusher Herb Grinder 4 Piece Green
- Aircraft grade billet aluminum
- Stainless steel screen
- Anodized coating
- Neodymium Magnets
- Available in several colors
- Smooth grinding due to the very sharp teeth
- Sturdy despite thinner billet aluminum.
- Compact design
- The build might be too small for some.
- Heavy-duty grinding may result in flaking metal
- Its lightweight material may find difficulty in grinding tougher herbs
- The screen is rather flimsy
The Daily Grind
And that’s our top 5 best herb grinder folks !
If you’re still on the fence about your next grinder, then we highly recommend the Zip Grinders - Large Herb Grinder with Pollen Catcher ! You can’t go wrong with its incredibly durable aerospace-grade aluminum and large size !
We also love that it is transformable into a lighter, smaller, and more portable 3-piece grinder by detaching the center chamber.
What’s more, we were able to shred fresh herbs and see how we did with grinding through the acrylic window. Finally, grinding with the Zip Grinder was less of a workout and more of a breeze !
Did we forget to include your favorite grinder ? Would you have any recommendations ? Let us know !