How to Grind Weed Without a Grinder

10 Lifehacks to Grind Weed Without a Grinder
February 04, 2021

Damn, I forgot my grinder!

Ok, you never leave home without it, but you find yourself at a party and someone has got some dank bud, you reach into your bag and “Damn, I forgot my grinder”!  Or, maybe you got high at the party and you got home, thinking that you’ll just have a little toke before bed and “Damn, I…” yeah, you get the idea.

Being without a grinder should never stop you from enjoying a session on the bong, vape, or from rolling a joint.  If you can think clearly enough, there are many ingenious ways to ‘grind’ your nugs.  If things are a little hazy, you can rely on the internet to show you 10 life hacks to grind weed without a grinder.

So, if you’re at home, on the road, or round at friends, and you’ve without a doubt, no choice about it simply got to have a toke, here are our…

10 life hacks to grind weed without a grinder

Weed grinder

We’re off to the kitchen.  The kitchen is a fantastic source of chopping, grinding, and shredding apparatus, so probably the best place to start. There is evidence to suggest grinding weed can boost high so it makes sense to figure out some sort of alternative if you don’t have a grinder near you.

Coffee Grinder

A coffee grinder is a lucky find.  If you’ve got one, a coffee grinder is an almost perfect replacement for your normal weed grinder.  Be it a manual style, with a box at the bottom to collect your grind, or using an electric-driven one, this will make light work of grinding your plant material.

In fact, you’ll want to go easy, because it can pulverize your stash in a matter of seconds.  If you happen to like a fine grind, this could be your new friend.

The important thing to remember is to clean it thoroughly before you grind.  You don’t want stray coffee souring your smoke and, particularly if it isn’t your grinder, you’ll want to clean it very well after use.  Nothing is going to ruin a friendship like a cup of Joe that stinks of weed.  Unintentionally, that is.

Fine Cheese Grater

A quick rummage in the draws and cupboards might be a good idea because nearly every kitchen will have a grater and most have one with a very fine cut, commonly used for parmesan cheese or zesting citrus fruit.  This is also fantastic for grating your weed, although any sized grater will work.  Again, you’ll want to make sure it’s clean, before and after use, but the key thing here is watching you don’t catch your fingertips!  This Is a painful and silly mistake!  These graters can easily strip the skin off your fingertips or knuckles, so be careful.  

The best thing here, is not to attempt to grate the entire stash?  Hold the bud in your fingertips and go slowly, until you’re a couple of safe millimeters off shredding your fingers.  Move on to the next bud and repeat.

If it’s all the dope you have and you need it all, there could still be a safer, effective way.

Metal Sieve

Don’t mistake a sieve for a colander.  The two may be used to do the same kitchen job, in principle, but for your purposes, they are not interchangeable.  The utensil we are looking for is a fine, wire meshed, metal sieve.

Hold the sieve over a clean surface, to collect your grind.  Take your bud and rub it around inside the sieve.  You could use a metal spoon to help it along if you like.

As before, watch your fingers!  Whilst nowhere near as aggressive as the grater, the sieve can still give you a bit of a graze.  It may take a little more work, but you should get a very fine grind from this method.

Pestle and Mortar

A pestle and mortar, or molcajete, is a pummeling tool that could provide you with a reasonable result.  If you’ve got a little time, it’s best to ensure your weed is as dry as possible, so it crumbles, rather than get pulverized into sticky lumps.  Alternatively, freezing your weed helps the crumble too.  

Pestle & Mortar

It should go without saying that you’ll want to wash your pounder first; pestle and mortars often have residual oils on the surface and these may not be a great addition to your smoking experience.  Similarly, after use, as there is likely to be a strong smell of weed due to the essential oils this kind of pummeling releases.

Try to grind, rather than pound your grass, to get the best results.

Chopping Knife and Board

How are your knife skills?  If you’re safe to handle a knife, this is a good option.  If you’re safe, but not very proficient, this method can take time and you’ll need to concentrate, so as not to cause some serious damage to your digits.

You’ll need a chopping knife and a clean chopping board.  A chopping knife, sometimes called a ‘chef’s knife’ has a convex, gently curving blade.  The shape of the blade allows for a rocking motion, which is ideal for fine chopping. 

Place your weed in a small pile in the middle of the board, take your knife and place the tip at a 30-degree angle to the board.  Now, rock the blade backward, through your marijuana, pushing the heel of the knife downwards.  Rock the knife back and forth, moving through your weed, trying to keep the blade in contact with the board at all times. 

Continue shopping until you reach your desired size of chopped plant material.  If this technique is new to you, congratulations, you’ve just mastered a basic knife skill, that you can use on any fresh herbs and fine materials.

Of course, you can use any sharp knife you have to hand, but the chopping or chef’s knife is designed for this job and this motion, so will do it well and safely.  Don’t try using a serrated edge blade, it’s not going to work well, at all.

Pizza Cutter

Just like above, grab a clean chopping board and the pizza wheel you found stuffed at the back of the kitchen draw.  Make a small pile of weed and run the wheel back and forth, through the weed.  Probably safer than the chopping knife, for those who have already enjoyed a hit, but it’s rarely as sharp and is likely to take longer.


A blender

This really shouldn’t be your first port of call!  Whilst this device is made for this kind of job, it is likely to be overkill for your buds; a bit like cracking an egg with a sledgehammer.  It really isn’t suitable for small quantities and single nugs.

Other than ensuring the blender is clean, the important thing is to use it on the ‘pulse’ setting.  If it doesn’t have one, you’ll have to ride the on/off switch.

Remove obvious stems and stalks and tip your buds into a clean and dry blender, secure the lid, and pulse, in short ‘blips’, until your desired texture is reached.  It is very, very easy to go past that point in the blink of an eye, so keep your eye on the ball.

Another reason this isn’t suitable for small quantities is that you’re now going to have to clean out the blender.  The entire thing could have been done more quickly, with your fingers!


Using the tools that God and Nature gave us is often the best idea.  In the case that you’ve got just a small amount to grind, simply break the buds apart and rip them into smaller pieces with your hands.  A grinder is a great tool, but you’re not lost completely if you have the use of your hands.  

We can’t see the point of telling you how to break your dope up with your fingers; if you’re reading this you know how to use them already.  If you can’t figure it out, you’ve probably had enough weed already!  C’mon?

Makeshift Shaker

If you can find a plastic meds container with a lid, that is ideal.  Alternatively, any lidded container smaller than a cup should do the trick; plastic is best.  Glass jars will make a lot of noise, and depending on the jar, you may need to be careful not to crack and smash it.

Drop a couple of higher denomination coins, or a couple of small pebbles (not as small as gravel) into the container, now your Mary Jane.  Secure the lid and shake vigorously.  Like the blender, do it in short pulses of activity and check your buds in between each shake.  Your optimum weed texture can be achieved quite quickly, so be mindful not to overshake.

If you’re using coins, be sure to wash them.  Nothing raises eyebrows quicker than handing over a few scents in your local shop with the accompanying aroma of your blessed buds.

Scissors and Cup

Any scissors can help you break up and chop your buds, even down to tiny nail scissors.  The only technique to this is ensuring that you don’t get your fat fingers in the way!  Use a clean cup or glass to collect your trimmings and try to keep your nails out of it.