While manual pepper mills tend to deliver a more consistent grind, the best electric pepper grinders offer effortless, one-handed use that’s easy on the wrists and the eyes. Many home cooks love the sleek look of the often stainless steel, more modern-looking electric pepper grinders. It's true that a battery-powered pepper grinder can be a bit heavier than a manual mill, but one-touch electric models are ideal for anyone looking for convenience and are especially great for those with painful conditions like arthritis.
When shopping for an electric pepper grinder, a key factor to consider is the material of the grinding mechanism. Materials can vary, though most of the mills we found were ceramic or metal, typically stainless steel. A ceramic mill provides a more consistent grind while also being more versatile than metal. Electric pepper mills with ceramic grinders can be used for salt or other dried spices without concerns of corrosion of the materials over time.
What's more, the best electric pepper grinders boast several features to make the home cook's life easier. The spice reservoir should be clear so it's obvious when it's time for a refill. Other features that are nice to have include a light for a clear view while grinding pepper and a cap or tray to keep kitchen counters tidy. It's also worth considering if you might want a matching salt grinder.
All of the electric pepper grinders below are highly rated on Amazon and cost less than $40.
1. The Overall Best, All Things Considered
With a large, durable ceramic core, this electric pepper grinder can also grind salt and other dried herbs, making it a multipurpose tool for less than $20. Keep stirring a dish with one hand and simply press a button on the top of the grinder with the other for easy one-handed use. To clearly see how much pepper is being added, this grinder features an LED light, and there's an acrylic container for the peppercorns, so you can monitor when it's time to refill. The sleek pepper grinder has adjustable grind settings from fine to coarse, just keep in mind that a finer grind setting with an electric pepper grinder will take a bit more time. A rubber cap keeps dust away from the pepper as it sits on the kitchen counter. The unit requires four AA batteries which are not included, but the pepper mill is backed by a limited lifetime warranty.
Fans say: “This grinder [replaced] my third battery operated grinder from another company...It was easy to set up, a couple of minutes, and I am grinding away. Love the ease of battery replacement and the ease of changing the grind to suit my needs.”
2. The Best Matching Salt & Pepper Set
The Latent Epicure salt and pepper grinder set comes with a sleek mill rest that not only ensures that your grinders always have home, but also works to catch any loose residue. Each grinder has six settings from fine to coarse. The ceramic grinding mechanism allows for long-term grinding of both salt and pepper, and the grinder's one-touch, one-handed operation makes for quick use. Dimly lit dinner? The grinders have bright lights so you can season your dish with precision. Each grinder weighs 12.8 ounces without the required four AA batteries (not included with purchase) and comes with a convenient cap. If this set catches your eye but you need only one for pepper, Latent Epicure also offers a single electric pepper grinder.
Fans say: "I really like these grinders. I use salt and pepper constantly in my cooking, and the ability to grind quickly at the push of a button is great. Setup was easy, instructions were clear. With daily use, I have not had to refill the container for over 2 weeks."
3. The Best 2-In-1 Electric Grinder
This dual grinder dispenses both pepper and salt in one stainless steel, rechargeable machine. Adjust to one of five grind settings, and press a button at the center of the grinder with either the salt or pepper side toward your dish or ingredient. With its rechargeable base, you'll never need to replace batteries on this stainless steel grinder. Though the grinding mechanism material isn't specified, reviewers noted that this model is best used for just salt and pepper. The container lids measure 1 teaspoon, yet another handy design feature for the home cook. The base also includes a removable crumb tray for easy cleaning. All in all, this one-handed pepper grinder makes for very convenient use. One thing to note: This grinder is a little heavier than the others at 1.26 pounds (i.e. a little over 20 ounces) since it's a two-in-one, but it one won't require the addition of batteries.
Fans say: “I've loved this [rechargeable] grinder for salt and fresh pepper. Nothing like it! I like the small container that catches grounds and measures a teaspoon. Handy. I keep it on the kitchen counter, but may have to get a separate one to keep on the dining table.”
4. The Best On A Budget
This automatic pepper grinder is a one-handed operation, but unlike the others on this list, there's no button to press — it's gravity operated. Select your grind setting, from fine to coarse, and then just flip the whole thing and watch as it dispenses freshly ground pepper. For less than $15, the Ozeri electric pepper grinder also features a ceramic mill, allowing for versatility if you'd like to experiment with spices beyond pepper. The grind adjustor at the top of the grinder, instead of the bottom, means there won't be any pepper residue on your kitchen counter, and the peppercorn container is clear for easily monitoring refills. The body of the grinder is a soft, textured material for a sturdy, fingerprint-resistant grip.
Fans say: “Now I can grind fresh pepper into my meals with one hand. Looks great in my counter, I don't want to [hide] it in the cabinet with my other spices. I highly recommend this pepper mill!”
Also Nice: Peppercorns That Reviewers Love
A treat for the new owner of an electric pepper grinder is a special variety of peppercorns, and Tellicherry peppercorns are some of the best in the world. This variety is prized for its complex taste with notable sweetness and brightness compared to other varieties. Frontier's high-grade Tellicherry peppercorns are certified-organic, kosher-certified, non-irradiated, and rich in flavor.
Fans say: “Wanted to refill my pepper grinder and decided to buy online vs the grocery store...[it's] something I'm glad I did as this pepper has a more peppery bite than others I've tried before and very tasty”
Bustle may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently from Bustle's editorial and sales departments.