What is an espresso knock box?
An espresso knock box is used to deposit coffee grounds into after you have finished making an espresso, aeropress or other beverage using ground coffee. The bar across your middle of the container is used to ‘knock’ your portafilter against in order to loosen the used coffee in the basket, known as the coffee ‘puck’. While a knock box is not a truly essential component of your home coffee set-up, it is certainly a very useful tool to have in your kit.
Good espresso knock boxes will feature a padded bar. This cushioning ensures you don’t dent or otherwise damage the portafilter.
Not only is having an espresso knock box taking your setup to the next level but also keeping it tidy which is important if you want to keep your espresso machine and equipment in good health and working well. If your espresso knock box can be kept underneath or next to your grinder, this may also proved somewhere for your loose grounds to be swept up.
Used pucks of ground espresso can be used for a number of things later on, so the enviromentally conscious will find this is an excellent way to store used grounds too.
Why should I use an espresso knock box?
- Convenience, especially if you do not have a bin or a food waste container next to your espresso machine set-up.
- Protecting your portafilter, good knock boxes will feature a bar covered with a sleeve (usually made from rubber). This cushioning ensures you do not dent or otherwise damage your portafilter. Additionally, if your portafilter does not have a spring, using a knock box prevents the basket from falling out when disposing of your coffee puck.
- Storing coffee grounds, these can be used later on as an excellent plant fertilizer.
5 Espresso Knock Boxes We Love
Here we take a look at 5 espresso knock boxes that we have used and some of the features that make them an excellent purchase for your espresso machine setup.
|Dimensions||11.5 x 11.5 x 12cm (L x W x H)|
Perfect if you have a Sage or Breville espresso machine, such as the Sage Barista Express or Duo Temp Pro, as this espresso knock box features the same brushed stainless steel finish and etched Sage logo. This is going to look great paired with any of the Sage (Breville) espresso machines.
A flat edged rectangular shape allows the knock box to fit in next to your espresso machine neatly and conveniently. Features a removable knock bar to allow for easy cleaning, and an anti-slip rubber grip on the base of the box for ease of use.
The size of the opening is spacious enough that you won’t struggle to knock the coffee
puck into the bin, and the box will comfortably hold around 4 – 5 coffees worth of grounds which for a home espresso machine is plenty of space.
|Dimensions||14.5 x 10.5 x 10.5 (L x W x H)|
Motta are one of Italy’s best stainless steel manufacturers. While this espresso knock box comes in at a higher price point than others we have featured in this list, it is worth it for the beautiful design and exceptionally high quality manufacturing.
The knock box is stamped out of a single sheet of stainless steel, meaning that there are
no weld lines and the inside is perfectly smooth. While this does not add any practical
functionality, it produces a truly beautiful knock box that would not look out of place in a
high end kitchen. This would make a perfect gift for home espresso loving family and
This knock box can hold upwards of ten coffee pucks, and the slanted top allows easy
access to the padded knock bar. The only downside to this knock box is that the bar is not
as easily removable as some of the other options, however the stainless steel interior is
easily rinsed out under the tap.
|Dimensions||10.16 x 10.16 x 10.16 (L x H x W)|
If counter space is limited and you are after a space-saving solution then this is likely to be
the best knock box for you. At just over 10cm each dimension, this knock box is designed
to sit snugly on the drip tray of your espresso machine when not in use, and has a rubber
non-slip base for ease of use.
While this knock box is made of plastic, Grindenstein have patented their ‘unbreakable
design’, so you can be comfortable that this is a durable item made to withstand knocks
and bumps. An added bonus is that it can easily be cleaned on the top shelf of the
dishwasher, and you don’t have to worry about streaking or fingerprints like some of the
stainless steel options.
We would recommend the Grindenstein Knock Box as a practical, functional and durable
option that would be well at home in any busy kitchen.
|Dimensions||16 x 10 x 11 cm (L x H x W)|
|Materials||Food grade 304 stainless steel|
If you want a more permanent addition to your home espresso set-up, this knock box is a
great option. The lip around the edge of the stainless steel box allows you to set the box
into a hole in your work surface, and easily lift the box out whenever it needs to be emptied
If you would prefer to keep the knock box on your counter top, there is a non-slip rubber
pad on the bottom to prevent movement and minimise noise.
This knock box has a spacious opening to prevent spills, and a padded knock bar to
ensure no damage is caused to your portafilter, and makes a great low-fuss budget option.
|Dimensions||34.8 x 25.4 x 8 cm (L x W x H)|
If you are looking to make more of an investment in an espresso knock box, we would recommend purchasing a knock drawer. This option is made from sturdy and durable stainless steel, and is able to hold the weight of your grinder on top, which can make a big difference in minimising mess and gives your coffee set-up a professional feel.
This drawer is available in either black or red, and features a thick rubber coating to the
knock bar. The lid of the box is detachable to facilitate easy cleaning, and features four
rows of small holes to allow ventilation and prevent mould build up from moisture in the box
(although it should still be emptied regularly).
This is a great option for any coffee lover who wants a larger capacity knock box to hold
several days’ worth of coffee grounds.
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