The Best Pepper Mill For the Most Flavorful Dishes
Pepper adds a strong flavor to almost any dish, making it one of the best-loved and widely used spices. To get the best flavors out of peppers, go for whole peppercorns and crank them yourself in the best pepper mill.
Cranking your own whole peppercorn will allow you to experience the full power of ground pepper you will never get from any pre-ground pepper you find in stores.
**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.
Knowing Before Choosing
It is always best to use freshly ground peppercorn. The moment you grind peppercorn, they start losing their flavor.
Why You Need a Pepper Mill
This is best answered by making a choice between freshly ground pepper and pre-ground pepper.
Pre-ground pepper (commercially ground pepper) has a shelf life and oxidation, making it lose most of its health benefits. Whole peppercorn does not have a shelf life.
It can be preserved and stored indefinitely in the freezer. Pre-ground pepper is exposed to oxidation. Fresh ground pepper remains un-oxidized, retaining much of its flavor and health benefits.
Pre-ground pepper has lost most of the health benefits of pepper. Freshly ground pepper retains all of the health benefits of pepper such as helping in the digestion process, helping cure vertigo, helping fight infections and a lot more.
Taste is the real test of the difference between pre-ground and freshly ground pepper. The release of natural oils in pepper alters its taste. Pre-ground pepper has been exposed to all elements during the manufacturing process making it lose these oils.
Freshly ground peppercorn retains all the natural oils of pepper. In short, freshly ground pepper is more flavorful than pre-ground pepper.
Types of Pepper Mills
There are three types of pepper mills you can choose from.
What to Look For
There are questions that need to be answered before choosing the best pepper mill.
Is it easy to use?
Whether you are going for a knob or crank type pepper mill, it should be easy to operate. Twisting or cranking this kitchen tool should be a piece of cake. If you have any condition that makes twisting or cranking a challenge, go for an electric pepper mill.
A mill with a twisting knob does not need much space to operate. A mill with a crank is easy on your wrist.
Are peppercorns easy to load?
Choose a pepper mill that has a large hopper opening. Tiny openings will require you to use a funnel or you will end up having peppercorns on the floor.
Is the fineness or coarseness of the grind consistent?
Pepper mills come with either pre-set settings or adjustable knobs ranging from very coarse to fine pepper. It is best to go with a mill has that at least 4 specific pre-set settings so consistent grinds can be produced.
Mills that come with knobs that you can tighten or loosen to adjust grind fineness or coarseness will not produce consistent grinds. The knob may loosen as you go about your grinding, giving you inconsistent ground pepper.
How fast can it produce ground pepper?
An efficient pepper mill will take lesser twists or cranks to produce ground pepper. Manual pepper mills are much better than the electric ones in this aspect.
Does it have a good design?
The pepper mill you choose should be easy to hold. It should not be sliding from your hand. One with a non-slip grip is perfect. Look for something that is not too heavy, too.
Is the grinding mechanism durable?
Nylon grinding mechanisms do not last long and cannot be adjusted well. Ceramic is more durable than nylon. Stainless steel though is the best because they are long lasting, durable and produce grinds that are consistent.
What size do you need?
Pepper mills come in sizes ranging from 3 inches to 15 inches. The size you choose should depend on the how much ground pepper you need.
Where will you be using the pepper mill?
Do you need a nice looking pepper mill you can use in the dining table? Do you need a functional one for the kitchen? Do you need both? There are pepper mills that combine both aesthetics and functionality.
More importantly, for most Americans, the ritual of making tea has always included heating water in a tea kettle on the stovetop. And yes, stovetop tea kettles are a lot cheaper than electric tea kettles.
The top 5 picks for Pepper Mill:
OXO Good Grips Lewis Pepper Mill
This pepper mill features a non-slip handle and a long crank for easy grinding. The oversized crank makes grinding easy and fast. The knob easily grips and turns.
It comes with a ceramic grinding mechanism with 5 grinding settings ranging from very coarse to very fine ground pepper. The ceramic grinding mechanism is more durable than any metallic grinder. It is corrosion resistance thus safe to use. Loading peppercorns is easy with its wide clear doors.
Unicorn Magnum Plus Pepper Mill 9" Black
This pepper mill comes in a simple yet sleek black design. It features a side mount ring for easy loading of peppercorns. Its grinding mechanism is made of oversized stainless steel allowing fast and easy grinding.
It comes with a thumbscrew at the bottom to adjust the fineness or coarseness of the grind ranging from fine to extra coarse. It is lightweight and features a grip that is firm on the hand. Grinding is easy and very fast. This 9 inch pepper mill is made from high quality ABS plastic making it durable. It has a 1 ¼ cup peppercorn capacity.
Olde Thompson Imperial - Wood pepper mill
This 10.5 5 inch pepper mill is made of stained wood with a classic walnut design. This mill grinds peppercorn by twisting its body. Its grinding mechanisms is made of carbon steel making it easily adjustable. It features a knob at the top to adjust the fineness or coarseness of the grind. This mill is easy to use. You do not need to apply twist hard to allow pepper grinds to flow.
It is easy to load and refill this pepper mill. It is easy to clean and although made of wood, it will not discolor nor rot when dispersed in water. This product comes with a lifetime guarantee. This peppermill has for decades been used by the best restaurants.
Peugeot Paris u'Select 9-Inch Pepper Mill
This Peugeot 9 inch pepper mill prides itself on being both aesthetically beautiful and extremely functional. The classic look, ease of use and consistent grind features of Peugeot pepper mills that have made it a favorite for over a century is very much evident in this model.
This pepper mill comes with a stainless steel grind mechanism that guarantees consistency in all its 6 fineness or coarseness settings. Settings range from fine grind to slightly cracked peppercorns.
The knob on top turns easily for fast grinding. Grinding in this pepper mill is a two stage process. The grinding mechanism cracks the peppercorn and then grinds them.
This process produces rich flavor and aroma. This pepper mill cleans easily with a soft cloth. It is easily refillable, too. It should never be submerged in water nor tossed in the dishwasher.
Fletchers' Mill Federal Pepper Mill, 8 Inch
This pepper mill comes with a beautiful curve making it easy to hold and handle. It features a traditional design giving it a stylish look while being extremely functional.
It comes with a walnut stained wood design with a stainless steel (2-step process) grinding mechanism. Peppercorns are crushed before grinding.
It is easy to use. Load peppercorn into the mill, turn the adjustable top knob to choose your desired coarseness and you are all set to go. It comes with a top crown that locks the setting to always give you a consistent grind.
The Peugeot Paris u'Select 9-Inch Pepper Mill is a hands down winner. It has more flexibility in the coarseness of the grind as it comes with 6 adjustable settings. It always guarantees consistency of the grind.
Peugeot is a trusted brand and has lived up to its name of producing only the best freshly ground pepper with locked in flavor and aroma because it cracks the peppercorn before grinding.
The ease in loading peppercorns is a big plus factor, So is the ease of cleaning: a soft cloth is enough to make this pepper mill spotless
The Peugeot Paris u'Select 9-Inch Pepper Mill is a perfect blend of beauty and functionality