Grinding your own grains has become more and more popular since 2020. With increasing food shortages and prices sky rocketing more and more, people are trying to find better ways to feed their families. Grinding grains is the prefect way to add nutrients to your family’s diet as well as contributing to your food security.
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So you got a grain mill, now what?
In this post I will be going over a few things you might be wondering AFTER you have decided to buy a grain mill or already have it!
- Why you should grind grains at home
- Where to buy grains
- How to use your grain mill
- What to do when you first get your grain mill
- How to clean your grain mill
- Grain mill resources
Why should you grind your own grains?
There are many reasons to start grinding your own grains at home instead of buying flour at the store. Freshly ground flour is healthier, cheaper, and it is much easier to store whole wheat berries instead of flour.
Grinding grains at home is healthier
Milling your own grains at home is healthier because you have the whole berry and not just parts of it. White flour has all its bran and germ stripped from it to make it soft and fluffy, as well as to keep it shelf stable longer for shipping and store shelves. Whole wheat at the store is as good as all purpose flour when it comes to nutrients.
As an American, our diets are missing a ton of important nutrients. Grinding your own grains at home is a great way to get those missing nutrients back into our families bodies. Freshly ground grains are packed full of essential vitamins like B vitamins that most of us are highly deficient in. B vitamins are especially needed in women and pregnant mothers. Have you or a pregnant mom you know ever been told to take B vitamins to support your pregnancy and morning sickness? Our bodies are craving these essential vitamins that are simply just missing in our modern American diets.
When you grind it fresh at home, you can decide which type of grains to use. You can use which ever grain you family tolerates better or which ever you think tastes the best! I have a few different grains i like to use for different reasons. There’s even grains that are low in gluten or free if gluten in general if that’s something you are interested in.
Grinding grains at home is cheaper
Grinding grains has an up front cost. Yes, that is true, but it quickly pays for itself. If you are on this journey, you are likely trying to get the healthiest food for your family. If you bought the healthiest bread, and healthiest good true ingredient products, you will probably pay an arm and a leg to get these foods if you can even find them!
Milling my own flour at home allows me to make my own flour whenever I need it. I can use it to make the healthiest sandwich bread for lunches, make healthy whole wheat muffins for breakfast and snacks, and a healthier desert when I have a sweet tooth. Buying the whole wheat berry rather it is organic or an ancient grain, is cheaper per pound then buying organic flour from the store or any healthy convenience item.
Grinding grains at home is the best for bulk food storage
Buying wheat berries is a great option for people trying to bulk up their food supplies. They are a dry good which make them easy to store. Grains in their whole form are easier to store because it stays fresher longer and takes up less space.
Wheat berries for long term storage
Wheat berries in their whole form will last years. All their nutrients are packed into the little berry and protected until it’s Ground into flour. You can Store bulk grains in big food grade buckets to protect them from moisture and bugs. As soon as you mill your berries into flour, it will start loosing its nutrients very quickly. For this reason, its best to grind as you need it. It really doesnt take any more time to go ahead and grind as needed. Put your grains on to grind and while the grain mill is doing itsd thing you can grab your other ingeridence or tools needed.
Wheat berries take up less space
Getting wheat berries is great for storing in small spaces. 5 pounds of berries take up less space than 5 pounds of all purpose flour. It takes about half the amount of wheat berries for flour.
How much wheat berries – grinding grains for flour
In general 1/2 a cup of wheat berries will produce 1 cup of flour, but this largely depends on the types of grain themselves.
Where to buy grains for your grain mill
There is a few places to get wheat berries. On Line of course but You will be paying a Higher price per pound on a site like amazon.
A health food store is a good option but often they come in very small amounts and can cost quite a bit.
Azure Standard is my favorite place to get grains for my grain mill. You can buy grain in bulk amounts and they have a large variety of grains including organic and sprouted grains. They are also the most cost effective especially when buying in bulk.
How to use your grain mill for grinding grains
A grain mill is a really simple tool to use in your kitchen but can be intimidating when you first get it.
First look through your users manual. Every grain mill is slightly different but for the most part work the same. If you have a stone mill like the NutriMill Harvest Stone Grain Mill that I have you can follow along exactly as I do it.
…FYI it’s very super simply.
First place a bowl under the spout before you start grinding grains
Second take the lid off the top of the grain mill
Third TURN ON THE GRAIN MILL
This step is very important! do not skip this step.
I know you are thinking “DUHHHH how else will the grain mill grind my grains”. But I have skipped this step several times before and trust me you don’t want this happening to you.
AFTER turning the grain mill on, ADD your wheat berries.
Slowly adjust The knob at the top of your grain mill to your liking.
I will consistently feel the flour as it comes out to see how course it is. This is where you can make a courser flour for something like Cream of Wheat or a fine flour for muffins. Although this grain mill does a great job at grinding the grain super fine and soft, remember this is still whole wheat flour and it will not be as soft, light or fluffy as an all purpose flour. But I can assure you it is so tasty and health. (Not like card bored tasting, rancid store bought whole wheat).
Last, Wait for the mill to finish grinding all the grain you added to it.
Once you hear that the stones are no longer grinding grains you can let it run for a few more seconds and then turn it off.
What to do when you first get your grain mill
Okay but there’s one thing you need to do before grinding your first grains to cook or bake with.
You will want to run some cheap grains like rice through the grain mill to get out all the dust and debris. I did this 2 or 3 times and threw the ground up rice away.
How to clean your grain mill
This is very important so you don’t ruin your beloved grain mill. You can not get your grain mill wet or use water to clean it. If you grain mill needs cleaning or a dusting, use a dry microfiber cloth or rag.
Your grain mill should’ve came with a cleaning tool that looks like a big pipe cleaner on one end and a soft brush on the other. Make sure that this tool does not get used for anything else but the grain mill and does not come in contact with anything else. Use this brush the dust the inside of your grain mill hopper and the spout where the flour comes out at.
You can also clean it by running cheap rice through it like you did when you first got your grain mill.
Grinding Grains resources
Bread Beckers is a great recourse for all things real food. They have great recourses including a shop to get great tools and books like a grain mill And Sue Becker’s book The Essential Home-Ground Flour Book.
Grain Mill Books
The Essential Home-Ground Flour Book – one of my favorites and full of information and great recipes.
Have a kitchen aid and want an attachment?-KitchenAid KGM All Metal Grain Mill Attachment (also very budget friendly)