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If you take coffee brewing seriously, then you know accurate measurements are essential. Just like with baking, there is little room for guesswork when it comes to making a good cup of joe. This makes the coffee scale a very important tool to have. It opens the door for consistency in every cup and provides you with the opportunity for experimentation.
What’s also convenient about a coffee scale is that it has specific features designed to complement your home coffee brewing experience. Some scales, for instance, have integrated timers and varying units of measure, while others have more advanced features, such as Bluetooth capabilities to allow you to connect your scale to your phone.
To help you find the coffee scale that’s right for you, here’s are the best coffee scales available today.
Best Overall: Timemore Coffee Gram Scale
Rechargeable lithium battery
Automatic on and off functions
Small enough to travel with
Only measures in grams
Not entirely water-resistant
If you’re looking for a coffee scale that can do it all, look no further than this model from Timemore. With few embellishments, it boasts a clean and modern design, including an LED display that's hidden from sight until the scale is in use. It also includes a silicone mat that lives on the scale’s surface to protect it from water damage.
In terms of measurements, this scale can precisely measure weight to 0.1 gram—ideal for espresso and pour-over coffee. Besides accurately weighing out your java, this electronic scale includes an integrated timer that allows you to take more control of your brew. There is also an automatic timing function that automatically starts when the scale senses a change in weight. Additionally, it has an auto-off function, which engages after three minutes of inactivity.
This scale features a built-in lithium rechargeable battery, which can last for up to 10 hours, and there is a Type C USB port located on the scale to charge the scale as needed.
Max Weight: 2,000 grams | Precision: 0.1 gram | Size: 5.98 inches x 5.11 inches x 1.02 inches | Battery: Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion | Measuring Units: Grams
Best for Travel: Acaia Pearl Model S Scale
Not water-resistant or waterproof
If you need something portable, this coffee scale is a wonderful travel buddy. Measuring 6.3 inches x 6.3 inches x 1.25 inches, it’s the ideal size to store in a bag or suitcase. It may not be the most budget-friendly, but this coffee scale comes with many features that any coffee enthusiast would love to have. With laboratory-grade scale technology, it measures weight with incredible accuracy. It even monitors time and flow rates as you brew your morning coffee. Flow-rate measurement can help brewers refine their pouring speed and strength.
The scale itself has a simple, but modern design and is available in black and white varieties that can accommodate both espresso and pour-over coffee. Its scale has Bluetooth connectivity, so you can connect the scale to its mobile app, which has its own set of features, such as the ability to record brew recipes, access to brew guides, and more. This scale comes with a one-year warranty.
Max Weight: 3,000 grams | Precision: 0.1 gram | Size: 6.3 inches x 6.3 inches x 1.25 inches | Battery: Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion | Measuring Units: Grams, ounces
Best Budget: Apexstone Coffee Scale With Timer
Measures in five different units
Short battery life
For a wallet-friendly option, this coffee scale comes in for the win with a number of extras for a low price. Not only does it include a timer, but this scale also measures in a total of five different units. It has a max weight of 3,000 grams and can measure precisely to the 0.1 gram.
This scale also comes with a silicone mat, which protects the device from heat or spilled liquids. The mat is easily removable to clean off between uses. The LCD has either a blue or green backlight, making it easily readable, and shows the unit's switch function, timer, low battery indicator, auto-off function, and tare function.
One downside is that this coffee scale uses two AAA batteries, which may be inconvenient if you’re someone who makes a lot of coffee. That said, it does come with a 100 percent satisfaction warranty should you need to return it for any reason.
Max Weight: 3,000 grams | Precision: 0.1 gram | Size: 9 inches x 6 inches x 2 inches | Battery: AAA (2) | Measuring Units: Grams, ounces, pounds, milliliters, grams/milliliters
Best With Timer: Hario Black V60 Drip Scale
Easy to use
Lacks in style
Slow response time
When it comes to brewing excellent pour-over coffee, timing becomes one of the most important factors. This scale includes a built-in timer to help you follow and repeat your recipes accurately. The LCD has a dedicated space for the measurements on the right-hand side, while the timer is located on the left, making it easily readable.
This scale is rather plain and doesn’t have much to offer in terms of style, though it is available in several color options: stainless steel, black, and white. As for response time, it’s slightly slower than some other models, which could affect the final product if you’re a more experienced home brewer.
That said, this scale is very easy to use with its two clearly labeled buttons flanking the LCD, and it has an auto-off function that will kick in after five minutes of inactivity to save battery life. This function will not turn on when the timer is in use, which is an important factor when brewing pour-over coffee. For power, it does require two AAA batteries.
Max Weight: 2,000 grams | Precision: 0.1 gram | Size: 7.4 inches x 4.7 inches x 1.1 inches | Battery: AAA (2) | Measuring Units: Grams
Best With Grinder: OXO Brew Conical Burr Coffee Grinder With Integrated Scale
Grinds and measures coffee beans
Conical burr grinder
This coffee gadget features both a grinder and an integrated scale, eliminating the need for the two separate items. The hybrid allows you to select the grind setting (there are 38 in total) and the amount of coffee beans you want to grind.
Here's how it works: The user pours whole beans into the hopper and uses the dial to select how many grams or cups they would like to grind. The machine will then proceed to grind the selected amount of grounds. The hopper on top holds up to 16 ounces of coffee beans, and the grounds keeper holds up to 125 grams. One downside of the scale is that it can only measure to the 1 gram, meaning it lacks precision.
This coffee grinder and scale runs on electricity (120 volts) unlike the rest of the scales on this list. It’s also backed by the Oxo Better Guarantee, so can return your item if you experience any issues.
Max Weight: 125 grams | Precision: 1 gram | Size: 11.1 inches x 7.3 inches x 16.4 inches | Battery: 120 volts | Measuring Units: Grams, cups
Best for Espresso: Acaia Lunar Scale
Resistant to water
Sleek and stylish design
Small size for pour-over instruments
For the espresso lover, look no further than the Acaia Scale Lunar. It's one of the smaller options on this list, and since it was specifically designed for espresso, it should fit directly on your espresso machine drip tray. This allows you to observe the scale’s readout, which has one of the fastest response times as the espresso shot is being pulled.
Another standout feature is the auto-start timer that kicks in when the weight of espresso hits the scale. It comes with Bluetooth connectivity, too, similar to the Acaia Pearl, allowing you to connect it to the brand's apps to access coffee recipes, log your brew data, and more.
This scale also comes with a heat-proof silicone pad and features a hydrophobic ceramic coating, making it easy to keep clean. It’s also incredibly durable, built to withstand steam, espresso, and water. The Acaia Scale Lunar is available in black, white, and silver, and comes with a two-year manufacturer's warranty, which you probably want due to its high price tag.
Max Weight: 2,000 grams | Precision: 0.01 gram | Size: 4.1 inches x 4.1 inches x 0.59 inches | Battery: Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion | Measuring Units: Grams, ounces
Pour-over coffee and espresso fans will appreciate our travel-friendly top pick, the Timemore Coffee Gram Scale (view at Amazon), which precisely measures weight to the 0.1 gram. For something significantly less expensive that does a real stand-up job, albeit slightly slower, we recommend the Apexstone Coffee Scale With Timer (view at Amazon).
What to Look for in a Coffee Scale
An important consideration to make when shopping around for a coffee scale is accuracy. A worthwhile scale should be able to measure precisely, so avoid those that will not display measurements less than 1 gram. For best brew results, you should look for a coffee scale that can measure weight to the 0.1 gram.
Regardless of your brew method, a tare button is an essential feature to look for in a coffee scale. Many brew methods require you to place your brewing instrument directly on the scale to start, so having a tare button will allow you to reset the mass to zero and accurately measure the amount of water and/or grounds being placed in the brewing apparatus.
Finding the right size coffee scale will primarily depend on your brew method of choice. For instance, if you only brew pour-over coffee, then you’ll want to look for a scale that can accommodate the size of your pour-over instrument. If you brew espresso, a smaller scale would be best in order to be able to fit the scale on your drip tray as you pull the espresso shot.
If you are someone who drinks a lot of coffee and, therefore, brews a lot of coffee at home, you may want to consider a scale that either has a rechargeable battery or one that plugs into an outlet. For the occasional homebrewer, long battery life may not be as important, so getting a scale with replaceable batteries is likely a fine option.
Do you need a scale to make pour-over coffee?
There’s no hard-and-fast rule that requires you to have a scale to make pour-over coffee. Many simply use a coffee scoop and just eyeball how much water to add to make their coffee. However, having a scale will allow you to take your coffee to the next level. A scale offers you the opportunity to experiment with different coffee-to-water ratios and find the one that best matches your coffee-drinking preference. It also ensures a more consistent cup of coffee instead of having to guess how much coffee and water to add each time.
How do you use a coffee scale?
To use a coffee scale for pour-over, place a filter on the scale, press the tare button, and begin to add your desired amount of coffee grounds to the filter. Next, place the filter (with the coffee grounds inside now) into your brewing vessel, press the tare button again, and then proceed to add water as normal for coffee brewing, observing the weight on the display until it reaches your desired coffee-to-water ratio.
For espresso, press the tare button after placing the portafilter on the scale. Next, add the coffee grounds directly to the portafilter until it reaches your desired weight. Place the scale on the drip tray (if the size allows), and then place your cup on top of the scale. Press the tare button again, pull the espresso shot, and observe the resulting measurements.
Does a regular kitchen scale work for coffee?
It is certainly possible to use a regular kitchen scale to brew coffee, but there are a few important things to look for in order for it to work for coffee. First of all, make sure that the scale doesn’t have an auto-off function that will kick in when in use. This will be a problem if you plan to brew pour-over coffee. If the scale turns off while you’re still brewing, you’ll lose all of your measurements. Another important consideration to look for is a timer. They do exist, but it might be in your best interest to just buy a scale that was specifically designed for coffee because it will have the essential features you need.
How do you clean a coffee scale?
Cleaning a coffee scale will depend on the type of scale you have. More often than not, coffee scales are not resistant to water, so to prevent permanent damage, you shouldn’t immerse them in water. Most coffee scales will do fine with a simple wiping of its surfaces after each use.
Some coffee scales include a removable silicone mat that protects the scale’s surface. These mats can be taken off and cleaned separately.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Cheyenne Elwell regularly uses a coffee scale in her own brewing routine. She is a big fan of the Hario V60 Drip Scale Black to make her morning pour-over coffee. She is also the creator of a coffee blog in which she regularly writes about coffee brewing techniques and coffee accessories to make your coffee taste better at home.
This piece was updated by Derek Rose, the coffee and tea expert for The Spruce Eats. He researches a variety of coffee products, from measuring scoops to commercial espresso machines, and interviews field experts for their insight. Some of his favorite coffee beans to grind up are the extra-dark, extra-caffeinated Death Wish Coffee (view at Amazon).