Cleaning Cuisinart Grind and Brew - how much effort?
For anyone who has a Cuisinart Grind and Brew, how much trouble is it to keep clean?
My DHs senior citizen coffee maker kicked the bucket this morning and we are looking to replace it. I like the idea of the Grind & Brew, but is getting it ready for the next use much hassle? Right now I am in the habit of rinsing the basket & carafe of the coffee maker daily and running vinegar and water through the coffee maker weekly in terms of keeping it clean.
Experience/advice greatly appreciated :)
I bought one for my parents and they have since replaced it with another after it gave up the ghost after 3 years. The daily cleaning isn't bad, its got the basket, a top to the basket which is a quick rinse and easy to take off and put on.
The eventual cleaning of the grinder/hopper is slightly more work, but to be honest my mother who is 65 with lupus was able to clean it ok. It is easy to take apart and fill, its just a matter of making sure the hopper is dry which isn't a big deal.
You probably won't need to vinegar as often, it comes with a filter that you can replace every 6 months and it really helps reduce the calcium buildup.
Its not the absolute best machine on the market, but my parents love theirs. Its good value and lasted them 3 years when they used to go through a machine literally every 6 months.
I have a 12-cup. Carafe is easy to clean, carage top, same. Basket and basket top easy enough. I use paper filters so don't worry about the basket. The bean holder and top are a different story. Has a blade and the biggest cleaning issue (let's not talk noise level) is the steam that gets into it and solidifies the coffee dust. I usually crack the top of it open to let out residual steam after it gets done brewing, but the bean holder is still the hardest thing to clean. Cleaning aside, I DO like it for all the other bells and whistles. I'm not as fastidious as you. I change the water filter cartridge once a month, but I suppose our well water is good enough where I won't use vinegar to cycle through
I purchased this partially to reduce the number of machines on my counter.
I previously had a separate grinder and a coffeemaker which used paper filters.
It took me several months to get used to the extra steps in cleaning this machine needs.
I am not a super taster and really can not taste the difference between the gold filter and a paper filter. I suspect the amount of water needed to clean the gold filter has a bigger environmental impact than the energy required to make the disposable paper filters (which I previously composted). The cover that fits over the basket gets a bit of grounds on it too. Not having a garbage disposal I try to wipe them off before washing.
The rest of the filter basket area and the carafe take the same amount of time as my old machine.
The grinder/hopper takes a bit of wiping and needs to be dry before refilling. I recently received some ground coffee as a gift and have found the process less of a chore. Unfortunately, I like my coffee beans better!
A friend used to have this machine and told me he eventually switched to a different one which is easier to clean. I wish I had known this before I bought mine!
Part of the reason I am not thrilled is it is a lot more work than my old system. Some of that is my process has always been to wash and set up my coffee maker before I go to bed. Since the grinder/hopper must be dry this adds another step...on days when I can adjust routine and wash it out in the mornings things seem like less of an ordeal in the evening. YMMV!
I think my grind and brew makes a good cup of coffee, but I find the cleaning of the grinder to be a hassle (meatn3 summed it up very well). So I ended up buying a separate grinder anyway and not using the built in one.
Just an update. Once my machine had just passed it's first birthday it entered it's terrible two's.
The basket assembly has started to pop open during brewing. All of a sudden I hear a hissing sound and discover a mess - plus this causes grounds to drop into the carafe. It has happened enough that I am certain it isn't something I'm doing!
This is not improving my mornings!
I would not recommend this machine.
I vaguely recall my parents machine doing that a couple times, and there was an extremely simple fix, something to do with the handle of the basket but I can't exactly remember. I think I figured out flipping the handle to the other side fixed the problem. Something strange anyways. I will ask them when they are back from their vacation.
I know the handle of the basket is supposed to face outwards and I'm well trained in that aspect.
But your post has made me wonder about the lid on the carafe - sometimes it is tricky to press evenly into place. I appreciate your offer to ask them!
It is odd that there were no issues for a year...and I'm the only one using the machine so I can't pass the blame elsewhere.