Last Updated on May 8, 2022 by John Moretti
Everyone who enjoys coffee knows that grinding coffee beans, fresh provides a much better brew than using pre-ground coffee beans. Pre-ground beans are often stale and very lackluster, so brewing with freshly ground beans is far better, but what if you do not have a grinder? Where can you go to grind your coffee beans?
Walmart, Costco, and Trader Joe’s all have coffee grinders available for free use. Starbucks will allow you to grind Starbucks brand coffee beans. Local coffee shops may allow you to grind beans at the end of the day. The surest option is Walmart but beware of old leftover beans in the grinders.
If you do not have a coffee grinder at home, there are ways to get your coffee beans ground for free, provided you are willing to travel a bit. Regardless of where you live, there is sure to be somewhere nearby where you can get your beans ground! Let’s explore the options.
5 Nearby Places To Grind Your Coffee Beans
Coffee beans are best brewed soon after grinding, but this can be an issue if you do not have your own grinder. However, it is possible to buy whole coffee beans and take them somewhere to have them ground for free.
This is still a more favorable option than buying a bag of pre-ground coffee beans, as it is impossible to determine when the coffee was ground and how fresh it is before brewing.
Buying a bag of whole beans and grinding it yourself will provide a better-tasting brew than buying a bag of pre-ground coffee.
There are several places where grinding coffee beans for free is possible. However, you must be careful when using free coffee grinders at public locations, as the grinder may have remnants of other coffee beans left within, and the grind size may not be ideal for your brewing method.
If you find yourself using a grinder in a public location, take the time to clean it out as much as possible, grind a small amount of beans through the machine to clear out any old beans before grinding your whole batch, and be sure to set the grind size as fine or coarse as you need it to be.
With that in mind, let’s explore the best places to take your coffee beans to be ground.
Everyone has a Walmart nearby. Regardless of where you live in the US, there is sure to be Walmart near you, and these stores offer a range of services that are open for public use.
One such service is an array of coffee bean grinders that are available for anyone to use. These machines are typically free to use, and they are usually industrial-sized and quality grinders.
This means that using the coffee grinders at Walmart is sure to result in a good grind of even size, so long as you know how to use the grinder well. Walmart provides free grinders for everyone to use, even if the coffee was not bought in the store.
The only trouble with this is that not every Walmart provides coffee grinders. The larger branches do, and the Walmart branches where coffee is a big selling item do as well, but not every Walmart has grinders for the public to use.
Another large department and grocery store that is a viable option for grinding coffee beans is Costco Wholesale. Most Costco branches have large coffee grinders available for free use, and these brands seem to be more consistent with grinder availability, even though they are not as widespread as other brands.
Costco grinders are similar to those found in Walmart and other such stores, but fewer people are aware of this service, which means that there are typically fewer leftover coffee grounds in Costco machines.
This brand of wholesale store is widespread, and they usually have these coffee grinders available for free use. However, they are not always clearly visible, so if you cannot find the grinders, ask an employee to show you where to find the machines.
The grinders at Costco are sometimes located behind deli counters and are only used by staff members, but they are available to the public. All you have to do is ask them to grind your coffee for you.
Be sure to ask the person grinding your beans to set the grinder to your preferred grind size, and there should be no problem with the ground coffee that you receive.
3. Trader Joe’s
Trader Joe’s falls into the same category as the previously mentioned stores, and they have coffee grinders available in almost every branch.
However, there is a catch when grinding coffee at Trader Joe’s. This company is focused on selling wholesome, healthy foods and therefore only stocks very particular types and brands of coffee beans.
This means that Trader Joe’s only allows coffee beans to be ground in the machines that were bought in that particular store. This ensures that only Trader Joe’s quality coffee beans are run through the machine, preventing any cross-contamination with inferior quality coffee beans.
Some may be very surprised to hear that Starbucks is a good place to get your coffee beans ground. Almost all Starbucks branches will grind any coffee beans that you buy in that branch. This is a service offered by Starbucks to their patrons.
However, very few Starbucks branches will grind any coffee beans other than Starbucks brand coffee beans. Some kindly Starbucks employees may be willing to do so at the end of the day before they clean their machines, but if you need to grind your beans at Starbucks, just buy the beans from the same branch.
5. Local Coffee Shops
Coffee shops and cafés in your local area are good options for finding somewhere to grind coffee beans. However, there is a way to go about doing this.
These establishments are typically very small yet very busy and usually understaffed. This means that if you come in and ask someone to grind your beans during a busy lunch rush, they may laugh you right out of the café.
If you need to grind your beans at a coffee shop, have the courtesy to enquire at the end of the service day near closing time when there are fewer customers and when the machines are about to be cleaned anyway.
At this time of the day, the barista should be happy to help you grind your coffee beans without any problems at all.
If you have whole coffee beans but no means to grind them, there are some local stores and cafés that will be willing to help you out. The only trick here is knowing where to go and visit the location at an appropriate time of day.
Take the time to find somewhere near you where you can grind your coffee beans, and your morning brews will be all the better for it! Grinding whole beans is always better than buying a bag of pre-ground coffee, so the rewards are well worth the effort!