Bring cafe-quality coffee home for a fraction of the price with one of my favorite kitchen tools.

Jessica Ball, M.S., R.D.
June 21, 2020
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Welcome to Thrifty. A weekly column where assistant nutrition editor and registered dietitian, Jessica Ball, keeps it real on how to grocery shop on a budget, make healthy meals for one or two and make earth-friendly choices without overhauling your entire life.

Like many of us, I am a regular coffee drinker. I have at least one, and sometimes one too many, cup(s) a day. However, drip coffee and even French press coffee at home would never excite me very much, so I ended up buying coffee out often. Not only was this expensive, but also I felt a pang of guilt every time I threw away the disposable cup. But when I got my Krups Fast Touch Electric Coffee Grinder ($19.99, Wayfair.com), everything changed.

Freshly ground coffee beans are a game changer and turned my otherwise home-brewed coffee into a café-quality cup. Plus, instead of buying a coffee out for on average $3 a cup, I can buy a 12 ounce bag of whole bean coffee for $10 and make it myself, saving me close to $70 a month! I am not only able to save money, but can also cut down on waste and have delicious coffee daily without leaving the house.

The Best Affordable Coffee Grinder

For less than $20, you can get the Krups Fast Touch Electric Coffee Grinder on Wayfair.com (from $19.99). Not to mention, it's on sale right now, so it pays to act quickly.

Wayfair.com

I love this coffee grinder in particular for a lot of reasons. It is easy to clean and it's compact, so it fits easily in my kitchen cupboard. As an added bonus, it doubles as a spice grinder so you can boost the aromatics in your food as well. Sometimes, I even use it to grind up oatmeal in place of breadcrumbs in a pinch. It is definitely one of my most well-loved and frequently-used kitchen tools.

Is Whole-Bean Coffee Really That Much Better?

Absolutely! Coffee is full of aromatic compounds and oils that give it its fragrance and flavor. After coffee beans are roasted, they are only at peak freshness for two to three weeks. This is why most roasters sell their beans in vacuum sealed bags, to extend their freshness. Once coffee is ground, it only stays fresh for 20 to 30 minutes. No, your coffee will not make you sick if it is a little older, but it will lack the complexity of flavor and aroma that fresh coffee has. Not to mention, more than 75% of taste comes from smell so when things are less fragrant, their taste is less appealing by default.

These are all reasons that cup from the cafe tastes better than you pre-ground or old coffee at home. But with fresh, whole beans and this handy grinder, you can make a café-fresh cup on your own. Now that I've started grinding my own coffee fresh at home, I can never go back. Plus, it is helping me save money (close to $70 a month is nothing to snuff at) and I'm creating less waste.

For more caffeinated inspiration, check out our Healthy Coffee Drink recipes.