Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >
Jul 2, 2010 11:38 AM

Coffee Grinder as Food processor?

Do you think that you can use a coffee grinder as a mini food processor. Of course using a coffee grinder for coffee might retain its scent, but do you think it would work if i could use one strictly for non-coffee use. I have a spare coffee grinder from Christmas and was wondering if it would work.

If there is an old topic on this please refer me to it and delete this one. Thanks in advance : )

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. It depends on what you want to use it for. It won't grate cheese or anything, but I have a spare coffee grinder that I use strictly for spices, like making cumin powder from whole seeds, and it works great.

    1 Reply
    1. re: JonParker

      i bet it would do a fair job at a hard parmasean

    2. Too hard to clean out. You need a detachable bowl to both get access to the ground up food, pour it out, and clean it up. I know. I tried this once. Plus if you don't get it really clean your coffee will later taste like chopped onions or ground cumin ....... spring for that little mini food processor. I use this a lot but not as much as I use a good french chef's knife and a good wooden chopping board. It it is a small amount, you and your knife will still do the best job.

      1. Not exactly an old topic on this, but there was a discussion about using kitchen tools in unintentional ways and coffee grinders came up a few times.

        Because the way a coffee grinder is designed, you can use it as a grinder to grind spices or grains into fine powder. Like JonParker, I have a mini coffee grinder just for spices. However, a coffee grinder cannot be used a chopper, so it won't work for chopping cilantro or chopping onions...

        You get the idea.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Chemicalkinetics

          I agree with use it as a spice grinder. That is what I did with my old extra one and one you start you find that using freshly ground (and roasted ) spices SO addicting.

          If you want a mini chopper, consider an immersion blender that comes with one as an attachment. Great kitchen gadget that I use a lot now that I was gifted one.

          1. re: Quine

            I agree. Fresh ground spices are much more potent than those "ground spices in a bottle" we find in stores and cheaper too. Originally, I were using mortar and pestle, but that setup can be very labor intensive.

        2. I wouldn't use one for any moist or liquid foods. It is NOT immersible in water, and getting the blades clean after such foods is not going to be very successful. However, for dry foods or spices, or maybe even for chopping carrots fine (but NOT potatoes or onions) and then "cleaning" it after by processing some stale bread to remove flavors and knock loose any stray pieces might work.

          As others have said, they work great as spice grinders or spice blenders if you're making your own curry powder or such. The dry bread is the best way I've found to keep flavors from spilling over too much from one use to the next. Or you can use salt to clean one, then just dump the salt and leftover spices down the drain.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Caroline1

            one of the only useful thing about instant rice is it works great to clean coffee grinders.

          2. If you are talking about a whirly blade 'coffee grinder' you should be able to grind other stuff. God knows, they are not good for anything else, especially coffee.