Grinding lots of pepper


Staff member
Joined Mar 29, 2002
I've got some barbecue recipes of my own development that use lots of ground pepper. 1/2 cup when I'm 'cuing a whole pork shoulder. The standard pepper grinder is not up to the task. Last time, I used my food processor, but the corns etched the bowl before they were ground up. Don't want any more of that.

Ideally, I want to stay away from an electric device for when I cook out camping and such. I have used my mortar and pestle. I am hoping for something better still.

Joined Dec 30, 1999
Depending on where you live, if you have local ethnic grocery stores in your area, they may have manual tools for spice grinding which employ the same principles as a mortar and pestle but with a larger surface area. If you need more details, inquire here.

Is there any reason you don't want to just grind them in a coffee bean/spice grinder just before your trip (besides the issue of freshness of course).
Joined Apr 19, 2001
I have to confess that when I'm doing a huge batch of pepper, I order some from Penzey's; their coarse grind is great for BBQ sauces, and everything I've ever gotten from them is absolutely fresh.
Joined Aug 23, 2000
This might sound silly, but a friend of mine has just the thing: a battery powered pepper mill. Just set the coarseness, hold down the button, and a half cup shouldn't take five minutes. No extension cord either.


Staff member
Joined Mar 29, 2002
I did post a reply earlier, but I guess some net beast devoured it.

I am hoping for a technique over a device. I live in a 1940s house and storage was not part of the original plan. I already have to go down stairs to get the Kitchenaid, pressure cooker, wok, canned goods, and dutch ovens.

Ordering is an option, just not convenient. I may have to reconsider the storage and frequency of use issues related to a dedicated device.

Joined Sep 21, 2001
My favorite French Onion bowl is my pepper grinder of choice. If you are grinding A LOT of pepper. It has a flat unglazed bottom. I crush 10-12 corns at a time and can quickly grind a cup or so. I grind large quantities when I roast prime rib or am making Steak au Poivre.
Joined Jan 1, 2001
I like to use the bottom of an 8" saute pan. Just put your peppercorns on a cutting board and crush them with the bottom of the pan-sometimes I cover the corns with a paper towel to keep them from popping all over the kitchen. The curved side of the pan is great for leverage to get a finer grind. Otherwise you can get an attractive crushed pepper with just the bottom. You can also grind about a cupful in 2 minutes or less.
Joined Aug 4, 2000
I purchased a peppermill from Penzeys awhile ago, made by Zassenhaus. It has a crank - style handle, just right for grinding large quantities of pepper. Otherwise I'd use a mortar and pestle for such large amounts.


Staff member
Joined Jun 11, 2001
Man that Penzey's pepper mill is great isn't it? I love mine, both :)


Everyone needs a coffee (spice) grinder. Takes up about the space of a mouse. Set it on your counter!


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