All You Need To Know About Meat Grinders
While many people buy ground beef from a store or butcher, some prefer to cook it themselves. To do this, you need to buy a meat grinder that will give you complete control over what you eat.
But a meat grinder can not only grind the meat into minced meat. She has many other options. It can be used to make pasta, cook kebbe, and even make a vegetable salad.
All meat grinders are different, so you need to be able to choose the right one. Some brands have an established reputation and cherish it, not allowing themselves to save on materials. But in some cases, a big-name company has been seen buying parts from less advanced companies, and the end result had tangible downsides. Therefore, you should read the reviews.
- The principle of operation of the meat grinder
- Types of meat grinders
- Characteristics of meat grinders
- Functions of meat grinders
- Complete set of meat grinders
- Meat grinder accessories
- Features of meat grinders
- Advantages of meat grinders
- Disadvantages of meat grinders
- How to choose a meat grinder
- Six parameters that distinguish the best electric meat grinders
- Operation of meat grinders
- General safety rules for meat grinders
- Malfunctions of meat grinders
- Meat grinder manufacturers
- All You Need To Know About Meat Grinders
The principle of operation of the meat grinder
The meat grinder consists of:
- cases (material – stainless steel, aluminum, cast iron, plastic);
- receiver (tray for direct laying of products);
- auger (element supplying products to the knife);
- four-bladed knife;
- Lattice (mesh/disk).
From above, a product pre-cut into small pieces/slices is placed in the meat grinder. Getting between the turns of the screw conveyor (auger), it is transported to the knife.
On the front of the auger is a “finger” on which the knife is mounted. At the end is a shank, which is driven by a handle or an electric mechanism.
The knife, which fits snugly against the fixed grate, rotates with the auger. Due to this, the product is crushed. Passage and ejection through the holes are ensured by the supply of a new portion of the product.
Types of meat grinders
Household appliances are divided into two types:
Mechanical meat grinder
Operated with a handle. The device is fixed on the edge of the table. To do this, the bottom of the case is equipped with legs with rubber pads and a screw clamp.
The latter, twisting, tightly presses the legs to the tabletop, which prevents the device from moving during operation.
The handle turns the spiral shaft through which the products flow and rotates the knife. Adjacent to the grate, the blades of the knife grind the product, and it protrudes through the holes to the outside.
In an electric meat grinder
The motor is located inside the case, it is actuated by a button, and there is no need for a handle. At the bottom of the case, rubberized legs are necessarily placed, which perform several functions:
- prevent slipping or displacement of the device during operation;
- suppress vibration when the engine is running.
Meat grinder classes:
Meat grinders of the highest class differ in productivity. Their main function is to grind meat, poultry, and fish for minced meat.
The category includes multifunctional kitchen electrical appliances with an additional arsenal of grates and nozzles, graters, cutters, and knives.
Household meat grinders with minimum power, without additional modes and functions.
Meat grinder power:
- High: from 1500 to 3000 W, productivity on average 2 kg/1 min.
- Medium: 800 to 1500 W, averaging 1.5 kg/1 min.
- Small: from 400 to 800 W, productivity on average 0.8–1.5 kg/1 min.
Characteristics of meat grinders
Productivity of meat grinders
In mechanical meat grinders, this indicator depends on the force applied by a person. In electric models, the capacity indicates the average weight of the product processed in 60 seconds.
It is widely believed that performance directly depends on power, but this is not true in all cases. There are models with the same power, and at the same time, their performance varies by 1.5, or even 2 times.
In other cases, low-power electrical appliances have the same performance as higher power models.
Meat grinder power
In household kitchen appliances, it ranges from 400 W to 2000 W. Power is divided into nominal and maximum.
Rated – constant power at which the meat grinder operates in normal mode, but not longer than 15 minutes. After that, a long rest is required.
Maximum – the upper threshold of the meat grinder when processing small bones, veins, cartilage. A strictly defined time is used, which manufacturers must indicate in the instructions.
Most often it does not exceed 60 seconds. It is recommended to use this mode as little as possible when grinding:
- frozen meat;
- stringy or old meat;
The vast majority of meat grinders have a power reserve. But working in emergency mode negatively affects the wear resistance of the motor.
All-electric models have motor protection against overloads and overheating.
Automated power supply interrupter
Consists of two metal plates. In normal mode, they are in a closed position. If the motor overheats, then the consumption of electricity increases.
After a short time, when excess current is collected on the plates, they are disconnected. The device is de-energized, and the next switching on is possible after the motor has cooled down.
A plastic fuse that is designed for a specific heating threshold. If an object that the knife and auger cannot handle gets into the meat grinder, the motor continues to work and heats up.
When the critical temperature is reached, the fuse bursts, the engine is blocked and the device is disconnected from the mains.
Loading tray (platform/tray)
- It is intended for the convenient and safe introduction of products in a mouth for processing.
- In electrical appliances with a narrow neck-receiver, it is completed as a separate part.
- Made from metal or plastic.
- Installed from above.
The manual meat grinder is equipped with a wide mouth. Therefore, the use of an additional tray is not required.
Meat grinder body
A mechanical meat grinder is made of three materials:
- stainless steel (high-strength and corrosion-resistant material);
- aluminum (lightweight);
- cast iron (heavy, practical, durable).
In electric meat grinders, there are 3 types of material from which the body is made:
- metal alloy;
- stainless steel.
Functions of meat grinders
The main application is grinding meat into a homogeneous mass for minced meat.
- shredding (vegetables/fruits);
- crushing (ice/nuts);
- making purees, sauces, and juices.
Complete set of meat grinders
Electric meat grinders come with a product pusher.
This is a necessary precaution to avoid injury because the number of revolutions of the screw shaft in electrical appliances is at least 5 times higher than with the manual rotation of a mechanical meat grinder.
Additional equipment depends on the model.
The standard set includes:
- gratings with holes of various diameters;
- nozzles/graters for vegetables and fruits.
Options for additional equipment for meat grinders:
- Nozzle for a kebe. It is used for the manufacture of tubules intended for further stuffing with meat or vegetables.
- Nozzle for homemade sausages. A shell of the future sausage is attached to it, tied from the other side, and chopped meat is stuffed inside.
- Nozzle for cutting cubes, circles, plates, sticks, or straws. These attachments include vegetable cutters, graters, and shredders.
- Nozzle for cookies. With the help of such nozzles, the dough that is loaded inside comes out already ready-made. It remains only to cut the resulting sausage into portions and send it to the oven.
- Disks for stuffing. The most common and well-known grids/grids included in the kit of any meat grinder. They differ in diameter (from 3 to 9 mm) and the number of internal holes.
- Drums for a grater/shredder. Grater in the form of a hollow cylinder with different types of holes for vegetables and fruits.
- Form for cutlets. An uncommon detail. Thanks to the mold, the minced meat is divided into equal, ready-to-cook portions.
- Nozzle for tomatoes/soft vegetables. A hollow cylinder with small holes through which the juice and pulp seep.
- Citrus juicer. Nozzle in the form of a cap. Inside herself, she leaves the zest, seeds, peel. Only juice comes out.
Meat grinder accessories
These include not only nozzles, the completeness of which varies depending on the functionality of the meat grinder and its power, but also additional discs and knives.
Features of meat grinders
- In the prevailing number of models of electric meat grinders there is an automatic reverse function. It is necessary if a vein or other product that the meat grinder is not able to process has wound onto the auger.
- Reverse is also provided in mechanical meat grinders. To do this, just make a few turns with the handle in the opposite direction.
- Some models of electric meat grinders have the ability to load parts into the dishwasher. The main thing is to let them dry after washing to avoid rust.
Advantages of meat grinders
- The main advantage of an electric meat grinder is the fact that the grinding of products in it takes place continuously, unlike a blender.
- The first batch of the product is ready for use after 5-10 seconds, and not after the entire procedure, as is the case with food processors.
- When comparing a meat grinder and a combine with the same functionality, the former wins in terms of power.
- To install the meat grinder, you do not need to prepare the place beforehand and securely fix the device. It is enough to free up space on the table near the outlet.
- The advantages include a narrow long neck receiver. If you remember the safety rules and use a special pusher to promote products, you won’t have to worry about nails and fingers.
Disadvantages of meat grinders
A number of common inconveniences that may occur during the operation of electric meat grinders:
- It is difficult to clean the narrow opening of the feed opening of the auger shaft.
- Metal parts are capricious in maintenance. If they are not dried properly in time, rust and traces of corrosion often appear.
- Insufficient length of the electrical cord.
- High noise level during motor operation.
- The meat grinder performs poorly as a grater/shredder. The cylinders are made of thin material, which leads to the deformation of the nozzle.
- Reverse starts only after a complete stop of the meat grinder.
- Large dimensions.
- The auger can’t cope with the cores, they wind up, and you have to use the auto-reverse.
- Products must be cut into small cubes, otherwise they will not pass through the bottom of the neck.
- The metal parts of the meat grinder must not be washed in the dishwasher, otherwise, they will discolor, rust, or become coated.
- Weak sharpening of knives. The meat grinder copes only with meat without fat and lived.
- The auger shaft does not spin well, causing the meat in this area to accumulate and get stuck.
- Plastic gears are fragile and break easily.
- Unreliable fastening of a loading tray.
- The plastic body and auger are brittle, cracks and chips quickly appear.
How to choose a meat grinder
The complete set is directly related to the price of the electric meat grinder. The more nozzles attached to it, the higher the cost. This rule will help when choosing the meat grinder, which will become an indispensable assistant in the kitchen.
Six parameters that distinguish the best electric meat grinders
Performance and Power electric meat grinders
- The best solution for occasional use is to choose an electric meat grinder with a power of 800 W to 1500 W and a capacity of 1.5-2.5 kg/min.
- If the meat grinder will have to be used frequently, you should pay attention to models with a power of 1500 W and a capacity of 2 kg/min and above.
- For large volumes and frequent use, it is preferable to choose from equipment that consumes up to 2000 W with a capacity of up to 3 kg.
- Electric meat grinders larger than this power are not suitable for home cooking, they are designed for use in catering places.
Reliability of electric meat grinders
The material from which the body, auger, knives, grates, nozzles are made must be of high quality. It is important that it does not contain harmful substances. It is advisable to choose parts made of metal, not plastic.
Noisiness electric meat grinders
The lower this indicator, the more pleasant and easier it is to work with a meat grinder. The highest threshold is 82 dB. The human body normally perceives noise in the range of 70 to 75 dB. Acceptable vibration indicators range from 60-70 dB.
Dimensions of electric meat grinders
Take into account dimensions, weight, a tray for storing attachments, and a compartment for the cord. It is worth paying attention to the height of the outlet.
The functionality of electric meat grinders
It is necessary to think in advance what functions the appliance should have, which nozzles will have to be used constantly, and which ones can be completely abandoned.
The material from which the loading tray electric meat grinders is made
It is better if it is made of stainless steel, which does not contain impurities harmful to the body, and is not a metal alloy or plastic.
In this case, he:
- operated longer;
- easier to clean/wash, including in the dishwasher;
- does not react with products;
- does not absorb odors;
- does not change color (does not fade);
- does not deform from temperature.
Not a primary, but necessary function in a meat grinder.
Without it, you will have to stop work every time and disassemble the device in order to remove the core or piece of bone or unwind the fibers.
The use of metal in the manufacture of meat grinders is no longer a novelty. But models of electric meat grinders with a housing and a screw shaft made of plastic are still not uncommon.
On the one hand, this is a disadvantage. Plastic parts are fragile and do not inspire consumer confidence in terms of reliability and durability.
On the other hand, this is a plus. When meeting with bone, cartilage, or sinewy meat, the plastic auger will break faster than the motor overheats.
In this case, you can get by with replacing the broken part yourself and avoid expensive repairs or buying a new kitchen unit.
Operation of meat grinders
Mechanical meat grinder:
- Before starting work, you must always make sure that the meat grinder is fixed, and all parts are installed in their places.
- The product is placed in the receiver, previously cut into pieces or slices.
- When pushing towards the auger, it is important to remember the safety rules and keep your fingers away.
- After completion of the work, the meat grinder is disassembled, the parts are washed and dried.
Electric meat grinder:
- Make sure that there are no bones in the meat or other product before chopping.
- Cut the minced meat into medium-sized pieces, strips, or cubes, and thaw the frozen ones. This will extend the life of the knives and the motor.
- Ensure that the blades are sufficiently sharpened.
- Remember that the meat grinder is not designed to process foods with hard fibers.
- Use the pusher without replacing it with improvised means, and even more so with your fingers.
- At the end of work, turn off the device, disconnect it from the mains and only then disassemble it.
- Use only those parts and accessories supplied with the appliance or suitable for it.
Upon completion of work, when the meat grinder is already turned off from the network, the following rules must be followed:
- Remove product residues from the body and from the screw shaft.
- Wash parts with warm soapy water or a mild detergent.
- Rinse and dry. You can use paper towels to speed things up.
- Lubricate the knife, discs, and nozzles with vegetable oil to prevent oxidation.
General safety rules for meat grinders
- Immerse the housing, wire, or plug of the electrical appliance in liquid.
- Leave the included meat grinder unattended.
- Leave the appliance in operation if there are children or animals nearby.
- Place the device on or near hot surfaces, stoves, ovens.
- Carry/move the device using the main cable.
- Handle the power cable with wet hands.
- Use the device with a damaged case, wire or plug, when the engine is unstable, after being dropped or otherwise damaged.
If a repair or complex replacement of a part is required, contact the service center.
Malfunctions of meat grinders
First of all, parts that are made of plastic break. If the electric meat grinder is of a well-known brand, finding spare parts is not difficult.
The screw shaft or safety gear is easy to replace yourself. But if a breakdown occurred in the motor or case, you should not rely on your own strength and knowledge, it is better to entrust the repair of the device to people who are professionally versed in this.
In the second place, the nozzles break, because they are made of fragile materials. In these cases, there are spare seats, less often it is possible to purchase a separate unit.
Parts that you can change yourself:
- loading tray;
- screw shaft;
- vegetable cutter.
Replacement of parts, in which the repair of electric meat grinders is best done in a service center:
- electrical cords;
- circuit breakers;
- rubber seals;
- electronic modules.
Meat grinder manufacturers
The popular brand is part of a group of companies that belong to the German concern Robert Bosch GmbH. Under this brand, a number of kitchen appliances are produced that can satisfy even very picky customers.
Sales offices and customer service centers are located in more than 140 countries around the world. The list of goods provided on the market is distinguished by quality, loyal cost, and attractive design.
The brand is owned by a Japanese commercial company. Known for high quality, performance, and durability of products.
The main factories are located in Japan, which does not prevent the company from exporting goods to 120 countries of the world and serving customers at the proper level.
Of the pleasant features, the product stands out favorably:
- pricing policy;
- introduction of new technologies;
- attractive appearance.
This brand is the property of a French commercial organization, the world’s leading market leader in home appliances. The brand has long become popular outside its homeland and has already conquered buyers in 135 countries.
The main direction of Moulinex is kitchen appliances. A distinctive feature of the product is its ease of use.
Meat grinders of this brand are distinguished by:
- a variety of attractive colors.
Trade brand of the Dutch public company Royal Philips, which offers the widest range of technology products to improve the quality of people’s lives.
Philips meat grinders, with sufficient performance, are distinguished by low power consumption and price.
Trademark of an Israeli company – an international manufacturer of household appliances.
Polaris positions itself as a manufacturer of quality products for the home. But this indicator is not reflected in meat grinders. Compared to household appliances of other brands with the same power, the products of this manufacturer lose in performance.
The trademark belongs to the Bosch group. Household electrical appliances are produced under this brand. Each type is represented by a separate line of models that differ in appearance, equipment, characteristics, and functionality.
The trademark has established itself as a manufacturer of high-quality, safe, practical in operation, and original design products.
All You Need To Know About Meat Grinders
Pay attention to ease of use. This is more about your personal comfort level than the specific characteristics of the meat grinder, but most people tend to forget or ignore this. It is very important that you choose a meat grinder that is easy to use and operate, especially if you plan to use the device frequently.
Everyone loves to get appliances and get extra features, and meat grinders often have exciting and useful accessories. When you choose a meat grinder, pay attention to them. Various graters and cutting attachments can be very useful and influence the choice.
The importance of cleaning is very important because you are working with raw meat. Stainless steel knives and grates are a great choice because it’s very easy to clean and then that’s the quality. Parts of some models can be washed in the dishwasher, which can make maintenance even easier.