Making coffee has become an art form for some people and a precise science for others. If you are keen to learn more about the science of the perfect ratio and the best brew, you need to invest in the right electronic scale. Products like our personal favorite, the Hario V60 Drip Coffee Scale, show that you can get great, responsive readings in user-friendly scales. The best scale for coffee doesn’t have to be a high-tech item that blows your budget. Any of the options in our guide can help you get started.
Before we review these products to find the best digital scale, we need to consider why we would need one in the first place. What it is about these scales that make the process any easier, or the coffee any better?
Why do you need a coffee scale?
Think about having a coffee scale a little like having a set of scales when baking. When we bake, measurements and weights are essential to get the best ratio and flavor for the best result. Underestimate the amount of sugar and it won’t be sweet enough. The same is true for coffee beans. Underestimate how many you need and you won’t get the same intensity of flavor.
This can be a common problem because a handful of beans is always going to differ in weight. One batch of beans will weight more depending on the way it is roasted. So, you could end up with big discrepancies in taste. A set of coffee scales means that you can find the same weight of beans each time, rather than relying on the number of scoops.
How to use a coffee scale?
You can determine the weight of coffee beans by weighing them out in the portafilter of your machine. Some recommend around 14 grams for a single basket and 18 grams for a double basket for the best strength and flavor. From there you can pour your exact measurement into the grinder. You could also manually grind the beans into the portafilter until you get the right measurement.
You can also use digital scales when brewing coffee. Make sure to tare the scale to allow for the cup. Then, figure out your ratio. For example, if you use a ratio of 15-1 then you need to work out the ratio of coffee to water and add just enough water in grams to balance it out. It will take some practice to get this right, but it can lead to some great results and experiments in producing the best coffee possible at home.
Best Coffee Scale Reviews 2020
There are some great models out there that can help you get the readings you need for more accurate coffee. You don’t need to pay a fortune to do so either. These affordable models can offer a user-friendly approach with attractive designs and varying levels of accuracy. Compare your options carefully to find the best digital scale for you.
1. Hario V60 Drip Coffee Scale
Let’s start with our top pick in the best scales for making precise coffee at home. The reason that we are stating with this one is that it ticks so many of the boxes mentioned above. This scale is great if you want accuracy because it provides measurements as minuscule as 1/10 of a gram. This means precise measurements at a fast enough rate that you shouldn’t go too far over the mark. The intelligence of this system continues with the timer, which really helps when brewing the coffee, and the automatic shut-off.
This system is small, sleek, and pretty easy to read. But, therein lies one of the downsides. While this will look pretty, it doesn’t have the tough steel plate or the silicone pad that we mentioned above. So, it might not be as durable or easy to clean in the long run. Those that are prepared to overlook this and keep the scales clean and safe – and that remember to change the batteries – should appreciate this choice. It is a helpful tool for first-time users and those with some experience.
1) The speed of the readings for a better result
2) Pinpoint accuracy
3) A built-in timer for added convenience
4) The sleek, attractive look
1) The lack of protection on the top
2. GreaterGoods Digital Food Kitchen Scale
This last option in our list of the best coffee scales is another one that will look great when left out on the counter. There are some bright colors available for the smooth stainless steel. The in-built display is clean and easy to read with nice buttons either side to tare and change the reading. However, there seems to be a greater focus here on the looks and user-friendly aspects than the accuracy.
1) Easy to read
2) A compact device for regular use
3) A smooth, easy-clean stainless steel
4) Some fun, bold colours
1) not the most accurate option
3. Etekcity Digital Stainless Kitchen Scale
This next product is actually an Amazon’s Choice option for digital scales. This might be down to the low price or the fact that there are other 20,000 reviewers for this item. Most of those reviewers are happy with this budget item. This one is made from food-grade stainless steel for a clean look and no issues with hygiene. There is a small display at the bottom where you can see the increase in weight quite clearly thanks to the back-lit display. It doesn’t take much to tare the scale and get a reading.
A potential problem here is that you might not get the same level of accuracy or speed in the readings as you would with the smarter options in this guide. While this isn’t a problem when weighing out beans to go into a grinder, it is a problem if you want to use this for brewing coffee. The lack of intelligence is a concern for some experienced users but this could still be a good starting point for those on a budget.
1) A nice clean look with the bright display
2) Food-grade stainless steel
3) Easy to use
4) A low price
1) Not as smart as some other models
4. ERAVSOW Coffee Scale
The first thing that is noticeable about this model is that we have moved away from standard kitchen scales to something that is specifically for coffee. That is why there is a nice strong, round stainless steel plate on the top to hold the coffee cups or other paraphernalia. It should be a sturdy, easy-clean option. The high precision load sensors provide an accurate reading in a range of measurements and you can see it all lit up on the orange display. If you prefer, there is also a silicone drip mat in the box to use for drip coffee instead.
Whichever approach you take, you should find that this is a reliable option with some nice features. There is an automatic shut-off to save the batteries after 5 minutes, a simple tare function and even a hook to hang it up out of the way. The biggest issue here seems to be the batteries, once again. This isn’t a rechargeable option so you do need to be careful.
1) A choice of the stainless steel plate or silicone pad
2) A display that’s easy to read
3) Decent accuracy with good sensors
4) You can hang it up when not in use.
1) Some issues with the batteries
5. Ozeri ZK14-S Pronto Digital
This is another product that is more like a typical set of electronic scales for the kitchen. You get the basics of an LCD reading and buttons for the unit, tare and power. There are some nice color choices too with bright colors surround the base to offset the chrome plate on top. It is accessible and affordable and shouldn’t be too difficult to use. However, there aren’t the same sensors and features here for the same levels of accuracy as the models above.
1) Simple controls
2) A clear display
3) Carious colours available
4) Automatic shut-off to save the batteries
1) Doesn’t seem to have the same accuracy
6. AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Digital Kitchen Scale
Amazon Basics modes are always worth a look if you are just starting out with a hobby – such as coffee making – and need something simple. This could be a nice entry-level option as there isn’t too much to deal with and it does just enough to get you started. There is an advanced sensor for quick reading and this is easy to read on the large display. It is also easy to tare the scale and change the reading with the large buttons on the side. You can then put the cup or filter on the stainless steel plate. There is just enough here without getting complicated, but also nothing special.
1) The simple controls
2) An easy-to-read display
3) The large stainless steel plate
4) A low price
1) Too basic for some users
7. TOMIBA Digital
Our penultimate choice in the search for the best scales for making coffee is this one from Tomiba. Again, this ticks a lot of boxes in terms of the features for weighing out coffee. There is that easy-clean stainless steel – which this time is all on one level for a sleek look. There are also 4 high precision sensors to take the readings with enough speed so you don’t go over too far. The readings are easy to see on the blue back-lit display and are convertible as needed. There is the potential to use this simple little scale for many applications. However, some users found that it didn’t last as long as anticipated, which some breakdowns after a few weeks.
1) A decent level of accuracy
2) A nice look with the low profile stainless steel
3) Easy to read
4) Automatic shut-off
1) Some quality control issues
8. Ozeri Touch Professional Digital
The selling point here for a lot of consumers is the idea of an attractive set of scales that will work for many different applications. This isn’t specifically a coffee scale, and as such doesn’t have some of the same features or the same plates on top. But, it does have a slim design without the use of those pads and uses durable tempered glass instead. It also comes in a choice of colors to suit the decor in your kitchen. This multifunctional approach also means precise readings in different forms of measurements.
Another thing that may appeal to users here is the touch-sensitive buttons. While some find them to be a little too sensitive, others will find that they are user-friendly and easy to clean. Therefore, it should stay looking nice for a while. However, all these intelligence and the bright display does seem to drain the batteries far quicker than users would like. This could end up being costly and frustrating in the long run.
1) An attractive option in a range of colors
2) A low profile with the tempered glass for durability
3) 4 high precision sensors for accuracy
4) Touch-sensitive buttons to change the readout
1) poor battery life
How to choose the best coffee scale?
Before we look at some of the best coffee bean scales on the market right now, we need to talk about some of the most important features and considerations. Products that meet these criteria should prove to be a helpful tool for your needs.
Analog or digital
The first thing to consider is whether you want to go for an old fashioned set of analog scales to weigh out your coffee beans or a digital one. While analog, vintage scales can look amazing out on the counter, they aren’t the most practical solution. Go with a digital model because of the other features below.
You can typically get greater accuracy with a digital model but you have to pay attention to the capabilities in the specification. Some will provide minute increments to help you get the very best result. Others are a little more of an estimate. Some will also let you change the readings from imperial to metric.
The speed of the reading
From there, you also need to consider the speed of the reading. For example, does the product offer a fluid change in readings as you add the beans or is there a bit of a lag. A lag can lead to you adding too much and the process going wrong.
You should also consider the power supply on these digital coffee scales. Battery-powered options are preferable because they are portable and easy to use. Those with rechargeable batteries are often better because you aren’t running around looking for spares and it is cost-effective. Just make sure to charge it before you need it.
A waterproof silicone pad or a stainless steel plate?
Different models will have different approaches to the top of the scale. Some have smooth, attractive stainless steel plates that should be hard-wearing and will lower the height of the scales. But, others have waterproof silicone that protects against heat and is wipe-clean. Chose the one that works best for you.
Other digital features for coffee making
It is also worth taking a look at the other digital features like timers for the coffee brewing process, automatic shut-offs to save battery life and other features. Some products are smarter than others.
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I’m Liam & I’m the guy behind COFFEE MINISTER. In my blog, I share my expertise and help you with your coffee-struggles. I can read coffee like the back of my hand and brew it like it is in coffee shops.