How to Clean a Burr Grinder

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What is a Burr Coffee Grinder?

A burr coffee grinder is a kitchen tool used to grind coffee beans to the required size, depending on the brew method. Burr grinder refers to the burrs which, unlike the blades of a blade grinder, crush the coffee beans to extract the natural coffee oils.

How to Clean an Electric Burr Grinder: A Step-by-Step Guide

Electric coffee grinders are convenient to use as they don't require manual cranking to grind coffee beans. However, they can be tricky to deep clean as many models may not have removable parts that can be cleaned manually. However, electric grinder cleaning pellets are the convenient solutions to cleaning your burr grinders easily!

What You'll Need

  • Coffee grinder cleaning pellets OR
  • Coarse salt
  • Coffee beans - ones you can toss
  • Toothbrush or Small scrub brush

Step 1: Empty Your Coffee Grinder

First, unplug your appliance, and empty the chamber of your coffee grinder. Make sure you remove as many beans and grounds as you can. Brush out the burr if necessary, as there may be some coffee grounds trapped between the burrs.

Step 2: Read the Instructions of the Cleaning Pellets

Read the instructions on the bottle of your cleaning pellets, and follow the manufacturer's instructions carefully. If you cannot access commercial cleaning pellets, coarse rock salt will work as well, but may leave a slightly salty taste to your first grind after cleaning.

Step 3: Clean Your Coffee Grinder

Place an appropriate amount of cleaning pellets or rock salt into the coffee grinder, making sure to cover the burrs. Plug in your machine, and start grinding the pellets. As the machine grinds the pellets, it cleans out excess ground coffee, as well as any coffee oil buildup left behind after everyday use. Salt does the same thing.

Step 4: Brush Out the Excess

Dump out the contents of the chamber, and brush out any trapped pellets stuck between the burrs. Wipe away any ground powder from the bean hopper, grind chamber, and spout. Prepare the grinder for purging.

Step 5: Grind Coffee Beans and Discard

Purge the cleaning tablets away by grinding coffee beans. You will need to do the process twice to remove as much ground power as possible. Grind your beans as usual, and discard the coffee particles. Shake off the excess ground coffee, and store the grinder closed in a dry, cool location.

How to Clean a Manual Burr Grinder: A Step-by-Step Guide

Manual burr grinders are hand-cranked tools that can often be disassembled for deep cleaning. Depending on the brand and model of your burr grinder, you may have nuts and screws holding the grinder together, which can be unfixed to take the grinder apart for easier cleaning.

What You'll Need

  • Dish soap
  • Scrub brush or Toothbrush
  • Dry microfiber cloth

Step 1: Deconstruct Your Coffee Grinder

First, deconstruct your burr grinder. Take note of each fitting so you can reconstruct your coffee grinder later on. Remove the screws, and dump out excess coffee grounds stuck in the chamber of the grinder.

Step 2: Soak Parts in Soapy Water

Dilute some dish soap into warm water to create a thin, mild soapy water solution. Soak the individual parts in the solution for at least one minute to soften the coffee dust, and dislodge any remaining grounds left behind after grinding coffee beans. Wash the chamber separately by hand using some mild dish soap.

Step 3: Brush Out the Coffee Oil

Take a soft brush, such as a small scrub brush or a toothbrush, and brush the coffee grounds and coffee oils away from the individual parts. The soapy solution should help dissolve the oils, and make it easier to scrub them away. Don't forget to scrub the interiors of the chamber as well to remove any stuck-on coffee grounds.

Step 4: Rinse and Dry

Rinse the parts under tap water, and dry with a microfiber cloth. Pat everything dry, or let each part air dry completely before reconstructing your coffee grinder to prevent mold growth and rust spots from forming in the trapped moisture.

Step 5: Reconstruct Your Coffee Grinder

Lastly, reconstruct the coffee grinder by securing the parts back together in reverse order of how you deconstructed it. Make sure any springs, screws, and nuts are tightly secured to keep your grinder in good working order. Store the grinder in a cool, dry location.

Tips to Maintain Your Burr Coffee Grinder

  • Clean a burr grinder between switching beans to prevent the overlap in flavor.
  • Avoid grinding rice grains and oats in the coffee grinder despite what other guides say as these leave a starchy film in both a burr and blade grinder which will affect your next brew.
  • Clean coffee grinders frequently to keep your brew sanitary, and to remove any rancid coffee oil buildup.
  • Deep cleaning is the best method of maintaining your coffee grinder. This is done by dismantling the grinder, and cleaning each part separately.

Smell the Coffee

Wake up and smell the coffee - cleaning has never been this easy with our Luce Home cleaning services! We'll tackle the chores for you, so you can focus on things you love to do! Love coffee? Concentrate on your brew instead of the state of your kitchen as our expert cleaners get rid of the grease, dust, and oils for you.

Check out our coffee series of articles in our blog for cleaning tips any coffee aficionado should know!

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