Since moving to San Francisco we’ve picked up some snobby coffee habits:  We love our french press, we buy whole bean coffee and grind it fresh every morning.  It really isn’t that much effort, and it makes a world of difference.  Coffee used to be something I’d begrudgingly drink when I had to wake up extra early.  It’s now become a simple daily pleasure.

When we go camping we like to eat well, and enjoy some of the little pleasures from home.

When we would head out for a weekend camping we used to grind up enough coffee for the trip, and bring it along.  Now, due to Chris’ ingenuity we’ve got an even better method.

The Grinder to Use

This is the pepper we bought from Trader Joe’s a few months back.  It has a built-in pepper grinder.

Once the pepper was all used up, Chris had the idea to see if it would work for coffee.  I was skeptical, but we put it to the test.

The tools at hand: whole bean coffee, pepper grinders.

The tools to create hand ground coffee without power.

We filled the former peppercorn grinder up with the whole bean coffee:

The pepper grinder turned coffee grinder.

Grind it up, and this is what you get:

Hand Ground Coffee without power

A beautiful coarse ground coffee.

Whether camping or traveling this is a simple, compact, power-free method to have fresh ground coffee anytime, anywhere.

This is the first in an ongoing series of Chris’ Hacks. Don’t miss out on these posts! Sign up to receive free email updates from Mountainize.com

 
  • http://twitter.com/cfischer69 Chris Fischer

    Can you think of any camping/portable way to get a fine grind for an Aeropress?

    • Mark in Colombia

      Take a look at what Tom from Sweetmarias recommends in his video on the Aeropress. I find the combo of the Hario without the base and the Aeropress to be a pretty good set up for travel. 
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AtD8u9oSG4A&lr=1

      • Anonymous

        That’s a great video Mark. He does have a good minimal travel coffee setup there. It seems like everyone finds their own way to what works for them. Our friends Russ & Laura have a different coffee travel setup though still utilizing the Hario: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d4GTLDBei5w

    • Anonymous

      Hi Chris! Several outdoor gear manufacturers make coffee grinders for this purpose. Though, they are larger and costlier than our little pepper grinder. I’ve heard good things about the Hario MSS-1B. Check it out and let us know what ends up working for you.

      • Greyson

        Is there a way to grind “fine” coffee without electricity? It seems like the peppercorn grinder is too course, and doesn’t grind fine enough to get more coffee with lesser beans.

  • http://kristinapp.tumblr.com Kristin Appenbrink

    Chris, I love this idea. Thanks so much for sharing. I use a French press travel mug at my desk every day, and this will be a great help in getting freshly ground coffee.

    • Anonymous

      Ah a french press travel mug has been on my wish list for some time. Enjoy Kristin!

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  • Shayshay000

    Trader Joe*… nice phone call.   hats off to the HD-boys and Happy Camp Fire Girls !

  • http://www.scandinavian-hiking.com Tomás

    Goddamn genius! No other words for it! I’m going to try this out this weekend! 

  • Pingback: Reuse a Pocket-Sized Pepper Mill as a Coffee Grinder for a Fresh Ground Brew … | Coffee Lover News

  • mcas

    My question:  Would it work for Sea Salt containers, as well? 

  • Greyson

    Is there a way to grind “fine” coffee without electricity? It seems like the peppercorn grinder is too course, and doesn’t grind fine enough to get more coffee with lesser beans.

  • Pingback: Mills are for more than just pepper – | Food You Can Cook