Herbs are an important part of any kitchen, but they can be a little tricky to grind. We often look for the easiest way to do this, and this usually means buying a cheap herb grinder, but that’s not always the best choice.
When you buy a cheap or even slightly used herb grinder, it may have some minor flaws and issues that could affect how well or how long your herbs last. You also run the risk of grinding up a lot more than you intended when you use one of these cheaper devices. So before you spend money on a new marijuana grinder, here are some tips to choose one that will get the job done.
Choose A Herb Grinder Based On Your Needs
The first thing you need to decide is what type of herb grinder you want. Choices include:
A simple ceramic herb grinder
This style is inexpensive, easy to clean, and lightweight. It’s perfect if you only want to use it to grind a small amount of herbs at a time. It’s great for spices, too, so don’t overlook this option.
Ceramic herb grinders can come in many shapes and sizes, but all of them have three basic parts: a chamber into which you place your herbs (or whatever else), a screen, and a handle for turning the device on and off while you grind your herbs.
Ceramic herb grinders tend to be less expensive than other options, but they are still somewhat pricey. They are also heavy, so keep this in mind if you plan on using it frequently or regularly. If you just need something to hold a few leaves or flowers, then this is a good option.
If you find yourself needing to grind larger amounts of herbs, then consider getting a food processor or blender instead. These are much better for making larger quantities of smoothies, soups, sauces, and other dishes where you’ll need a large quantity of fresh herbs to make them taste delicious. Food processors and blenders are also ideal for cooking since they help cut down on prep time.
A food processor or blender is probably the most versatile choice available, but it comes with its own set of problems. First, it’s fairly noisy. Second, food processors and blenders aren’t as easy to clean as a simple ceramic herb grinder. And finally, they’re heavy, and if you’re constantly using them, they can cause backaches from prolonged standing.
For these reasons, we recommend sticking with a simple ceramic herb grinder until you need to grind larger quantities of herbs. This way, you can save money by buying a smaller herb grinder that gets the job done rather than one that’s too big and bulky for your needs.
An electric herb grinder
Electric herb grinders are very popular because they’re relatively inexpensive and require no oil or cleaning products to work properly. They also come with an assortment of attachments that allow you to grind anything from nuts and seeds to coffee beans and grains, so there’s almost certainly one that does exactly what you need.
They’re also extremely convenient because you can store them out of sight and easily access them whenever you need to grind some herbs or another ingredient. Electric herb grinders can range in price depending on the size and features you want. Some models cost under $10 and others go for over $100.
Keep in mind that electric herb grinders aren’t quite as easy to clean as a standard ceramic grinder. If you’re looking for a way to quickly prepare your herbs without having to wash a bowl or two, then an electric herb grinder might be a good choice. But if you’re someone who likes to cook or bake with herbs every day, then an electric grinder might not be worth the extra expense.
Grinding your herbs in a conventional electric meat chopper isn’t going to give you the same results as a manual herb grinder like a mortar and pestle. That’s because the metal blades of an electric meat chopper won’t create enough friction to crush the herbs completely. It’s possible to achieve the same effect in a traditional mortar and pestle, but it takes a bit more effort.
Mortar and pestles are known for being effective ways to pulverize fresh herbs. They’re also easy to use, and they require no electricity or additional equipment. That makes them a great choice if you want to grind large quantities of herbs but don’t need to grind them very often.
There’s one major drawback to using a mortar and pestle though, and that’s the fact that they can take a long time to grind your herbs. Depending on the size and density of your herbs, this process may take anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes, which is far longer than you would expect when you’re trying to prepare a tasty dish or sauce. Plus, once you use a mortar and pestle, you can’t really reuse it.
If you want to speed up the process and save some time, then consider investing in a manual herb grinder. You can get one of these for about $20, and they typically weigh around 10 pounds, so you shouldn’t have any trouble carrying them around. Most people prefer an old-fashioned hand crank model, but they’re not always practical or fun to use. These days there are some electric versions that offer the convenience of a motorized crank without the hassle of manually cranking your herb grinder.
So if you want to go with a manual herb grinder, it’s recommended that you purchase one made from cast iron. Cast iron has been found to produce the most consistent results when grinding herbs, and it’s durable enough to withstand the wear and tear associated with continuous use. The downside to using a cast iron herb grinder is that it requires a bit more maintenance.
Cast iron herb grinders are heavier than their ceramic counterparts, which means they’re also harder to carry around. If you have arthritis and suffer from back pain, then purchasing a cast iron herb grinder could hurt your hands.
You should also be aware that most manual herb grinders require a fair amount of elbow grease to operate. Since you likely won’t be able to lift the entire unit, you’ll need to turn the crank to grind your herbs. In addition to this, the weight of the unit means that it requires more strength to turn it on and off. This can lead to sore arms and shoulders after a long session of grinding herbs.
Buying A New Herb Grinder
Once you know what type of herb grinder you want, the next step is deciding whether you want to buy a new unit or refurbish an existing one. Buying a new herb grinder is an excellent idea if you plan on using it daily or several times each week, or if you enjoy cooking or baking with fresh herbs.
But if you’re just looking to add a couple of herbs to your dinner tonight, then refurbishing a previously unused herb grinder makes more sense. It’s also a good idea to consider buying an herb grinder that’s made from stainless steel or aluminum rather than plastic. Stainless steel and aluminum are more resistant to corrosion and breakage than plastic, so you won’t have to worry about breaking your herb grinder if you accidentally drop it onto a hard surface.