How to Grind Weed Without a Grinder

How to Grind Weed Without a Grinder

Grinding your weed properly can make a big difference in your overall smoking experience. But sometimes, you might want to light up and realize you don't have a grinder handy. Luckily, there’s no need to give up or go out to buy a new grinder right away. Your house may be full of things that can double as a makeshift grinder. 

In this article, we're going to show you some creative ways to grind your weed using things you probably already have at home. We'll cover each method in detail, including the good and the bad, so you can find the best solution for your next smoke session.


How to Grind Weed Without a Grinder

Finding yourself without a grinder can be frustrating. After all, grinders are an excellent tool for turning your weed into a fine, workable texture. Nevertheless, grinding weed without a grinder can be fairly simple. Weed can be effectively ground using ordinary household items from the medicine cabinet or kitchen—or with your bare hands. 

Vessel weed grinder

Use Household Items to Grind Weed

If you misplaced your grinder, never fear. You can grind your weed using items that you probably have lying around the house. We’ll go into more detail on each method below.

  • Coffee grinder
  • Mortar and pestle
  • Cheese grater
  • Your fingers
  • Pill bottle and coins
  • Knife
  • Scissors and cup

The most important step in using any of these items, however, is ensuring that they’re clean. Before using any of the following items to grind your weed, make sure they’re properly cleaned, sanitized, and dried. This way, you’ll avoid smoking any dust (or any other icky substance) that might otherwise get ground into your weed. 

Coffee grinder

What better alternative to your weed grinder than another grinder? Using a coffee grinder is a quick, effective way to break down your flower for packing and rolling, especially when need to prepare a larger quantity of weed. You can also easily adjust the consistency of your grind by pulsing and checking frequently, ensuring you don't end up with weed powder.

How to grind weed with a coffee grinder

  • Step 1: Clean your grinder. Make sure your coffee grinder is clean to prevent contaminating your weed.
  • Step 2: Loosely pack your weed. Place small nugs into the coffee grinder. Be careful not to overpack it.
  • Step 3: Pulse and check. Use the pulse button (if available) and check the consistency every few seconds to achieve your desired grind without overdoing it.
  • Step 4: Clean after use. After grinding, clean your grinder thoroughly to remove any cannabis residue.

What you need

  • Coffee grinder
  • Small nugs of cannabis
  • Cleaning brush or cloth


  • Quick and efficient
  • Easy to adjust grind consistency
  • Can grind large quantities of weed


  • Risk of flavor cross-contamination
  • Requires thorough cleaning before and after
  • Easy to over-grind

Mortar and Pestle

A more hands-on, traditional approach, using a mortar and pestle gives you full control over the grind’s texture. If you enjoy the whole ritual of grinding your weed, this method is for you. It might take a bit more effort and time, but the result is customized consistency.

How to grind weed using mortar and pestle

  • Step 1: Dry your weed. Expose your cannabis to air for a few hours to ensure it's dry enough for an easier grind.
  • Step 2: Prepare your weed. Break down your cannabis into smaller nugs and place them in the mortar.
  • Step 3: Grind to your liking. Crush and grind the weed with the pestle until it reaches your preferred consistency.
  • Step 4: Clean your tools. Wash your mortar and pestle after use for your next session.

What you need

  • Mortar and pestle
  • Cannabis
  • Container for weed
  • Drying towel


  • Full control over the grind texture
  • No need for electricity
  • Offers a traditional, ritualistic experience


  • More time-consuming than electric methods
  • Requires physical effort
  • Not suitable for grinding large quantities

Cheese grater

The sharp edges of the grater can easily slice through your buds, creating a perfect consistency for rolling or packing. Also, a cheese grinder can be found in almost every kitchen household, making it very convenient.

How to grind weed with a cheese grater

  • Step 1: Clean your grater. Ensure the cheese grater has been thoroughly cleaned to cross-contamination of any tastes or smells to your weed.
  • Step 2: Grate your weed. Hold your cannabis nugs against the grater and gently rub them against the blades. Be careful; keep your fingers away from the sharp edges to avoid any cuts or nicks.
  • Step 3: Collect your grind. Gently tap the grater over your collection tray to gather the ground cannabis.

What you need

  • Cheese grater
  • Cannabis
  • Collection tray


  • Can be found in pretty much every kitchen
  • Achieves a fine grind consistency
  • Quick and straightforward


  • Risk of injury to fingers
  • Improperly cleaning can lead to contamination

Pick it apart with your fingers

If you can’t be bothered to rummage through your house, just use your fingers. This method allows for a natural feel and control over the consistency of your grind, but it comes at the cost of losing precious kief at your fingertips.

How to use this method

  • Step 1: Dry your weed. Air-dry your cannabis for a few hours to help it crumble easier.
  • Step 2: Break down your weed. Gently tear apart the buds over a tray. Be sure to keep a close watch on the size of the chunks for a consistent grind.
  • Step 3: Collect and use. Gather the ground weed from your tray and use it — simple as that.

What you need

  • Dried cannabis
  • Clean hands
  • Tray or clean surface


  • No special tools required
  • Full control over grind consistency
  • Preserves the natural aroma and flavor


  • Can be time-consuming, depending on quantity
  • Loss of kief to fingers
  • Can be a potentially uneven grind

Pill bottle and coins

With just a pill bottle and some coins, you can shake your cannabis into a perfectly ground consistency. It's an effective way to achieve a fine grind without a traditional grinder, as long as you're careful not to overdo it and turn your buds into dust.

How to use this method

  • Step 1: Prepare your pill bottle and coins. Ensure the pill bottle is clean and dry before adding your cannabis. Also, clean your coins thoroughly since they’re dirt magnets.
  • Step 2: Add cannabis and coins. Break your cannabis into smaller pieces and add them to the bottle along with one or two clean coins.
  • Step 3: Shake the bottle. Screw the lid tightly and shake the bottle vigorously. The coins will break down the cannabis.
  • Step 4: Check your cannabis. Periodically check the grind to avoid over-grinding.

What you need

  • Empty pill bottle
  • Clean coins (nickels and quarters work best)
  • Cannabis


  • Effective for achieving a fine grind
  • Utilizes items you likely already have at home
  • Quick and easy with minimal effort


  • Requires cleaning of potentially dirty coins
  • Risk of over-grinding

Cutting with a knife

A knife provides a precise and controlled method to achieve a grind size to your liking. All you need is a sharp knife and a steady hand.

How to grind weed with a knife

  • Step 1: Prepare your cutting surface. Use a clean, sanitized cutting board to avoid any contamination.
  • Step 2: Use a sharp knife. Use a small yet sharp knife for precise cutting with minimal effort. This also reduces the risk of crushing the buds, as well as any accidental cuts to your hands.
  • Step 3: Cut the cannabis. Gently chop the cannabis to your desired consistency. Be sure to collect any weed that stuck onto your knife.

What you need

  • Sharp, small knife
  • Clean, sanitized cutting board
  • Cannabis buds


  • Precise control over the size of the grind
  • No need for specialized grinding equipment
  • Allows for uniform consistency


  • Can be time-consuming
  • Requires a sharp knife for optimal results
  • Potential for uneven grinding

Scissors and a cup

Cutting up your cannabis buds with scissors is simple yet effective. Just collect the cut-up material in a cup — all without losing precious kief.

How to grind cannabis using scissors and a cup

  • Step 1: Sanitize your scissors. Clean your scissors thoroughly to ensure no contaminants are transferred to your cannabis.
  • Step 2: Hold the cannabis over a cup. To make sure you catch everything, use a cup with a wide rim to catch the flower and any loose kief.
  • Step 3: Cut the cannabis. Snip the buds into consistent sizes into the cup.

What you need

  • Sanitized scissors
  • Cup (preferably wide-rimmed)
  • Cannabis buds


  • Simple and accessible method
  • Easy collection of ground cannabis and kief
  • Provides good control over the grind size


  • Requires manual dexterity and patience
  • Not suitable for large quantities

To Sum It Up

To get your weed to a fine, workable consistency, grinding is necessary. However, the way you grind your weed is totally up to you: if you can’t find your grinder, grab one of the household items above and make it work. Just make sure to sanitize!


Can you grind weed into powder?

Yes, you can grind weed into a fine, almost powdery substance. Use your hands, a weed grinder, or any of the household items listed above to grind your weed into the consistency you prefer. 

How do you break down buds?

You can break down your bud into smaller nugs using your hands. From there, you can continue using your hands to break it down further, or you can use a number of household items to finely grind your weed. Among these are a coffee grinder, a cheese grater, a mortar and pestle, or scissors/a knife. 

Can you grind weed with a credit card?

Yes, you can use your credit card to grind your weed. To do so, disinfect your credit card, and place your weed on your tray, a mirror, or another flat surface. Use the edge of your card, and chop your weed until it is the fine, ground consistency that you prefer. 

Can you blend weed in a blender?

This method is effective but powerful: blend your weed for a couple of seconds to prevent it from getting too dusty. 

Is it better to use a grinder for weed?

Using a grinder for weed is merely a preference: if you find a different, effective way to grind your weed into your preferred texture without a grinder, why not use it? Any method that grinds weed is acceptable (as long as it’s safe!) 

What can I use instead of a weed grinder? 

Instead of a weed grinder, break bud down into a more workable texture using your fingers, a credit card, or a knife. Alternatively, shaking your nugs around in a pill bottle with a coin is another effective way to break it down. 

How do you grind buds by hand?

Drier bud crumbles easier. Start by drying out your flower for 1-2 hours. Thoroughly wash your hands and gently crush up the flower using your fingers. Pick out any stems. 

What do you do when you don’t have a grinder?

If you find yourself without a grinder, you can grind your weed using a number of methods. These methods include cutting it with a knife, crushing it with a credit card, or breaking it down using your fingers. 

How do you cut buds with scissors?

 Start by placing your bud into a clean glass. Using sanitized scissors, cut the nugs until they are a ground, workable texture. Cut inside the glass to avoid losing any weed.

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