How to Easily Grind Your Own Beef.

You’re going to grind your own meat!  Because you’re industrious, discerning and – not allowed to go to the grocery store. Instructions for grinding meat with a hand grinder, food processor or stand mixer.

 

As you know, things have changed a bit around the world in the past couple of months. You might not be quite as likely to run out to the grocery store as you once were because. And if you do go, they might not have everything you want.

I was able to find all kinds of Paul Newman for example, but there wasn’t a single Idris Elba anywhere. Not even in the protein powder aisle.

Just last week my mother asked one of my sisters to grab her some ground beef at the store. Nope. No ground beef. Apparently the ground beef ran off to have a torrid love affair with the toilet paper.

But that’s O.K. because you can easily grind your own meat even if you don’t have a meat grinder. Aside from doing this because we’re suddenly living in a very weird moment, grinding your own meat gives you more control over the cuts of meat and allows you to blend different types for optimal flavour.

So don’t think, OMG I can’t believe it’s come to thisI have to grind my own meat like some sort of dirt eating peasant. Think of it as, HOLY CRAP – I can’t believe I’m suddenly so brilliant that I can custom make my own blends of ground meat.

Hamburgers are fantastic little creatures that even taste good when they’re terrible. Do you have any idea how good they are when you grind your own beef???

I do. 

BECAUSE NOW I MAKE THE MOST DELICIOUS HAMBURGERS EVER!

the art of doing stuff burger

O.K. Now that I have you sold on burgers for dinner tonight with the above photo, we can commence.

I’m not going to scare you with a list of alarming things that go into store bought ground beef. The truth is you’ve been eating store bought ground beef for years and it’s been just fine and will continue to be just fine.

I’m just saying a slightly better option is grinding your own. 

Grinding your own meat sounds like more of an ordeal than it is. Unless you have 3 or 4 kids. Because even peeing is an ordeal when you have 3 or 4 kids.

Give it a shot.  And revel in the fact that all of us, together, can continue to enjoy tasty hamburgers.

How to Grind Beef

If you’re grinding your own beef the main reason to do this is for flavour.  If you only plan to do this occasionally then make it for an event where the beef is the star of the show, like Hamburgers.


→BEST CUTS FOR GRINDING INTO GROUND BEEF←

Look for roasts/meat labelled:

Blade Roast
Chuck Roast
Blade Roast
Cross Rib Roast

(Some are the same thing but labelled differently depending on what country you’re in or what your butcher labels them as.)


These all come from between the neck and the shoulder of the cow.  THIS is the area that’s going to have a good fat to meat ratio.

  • The BEST ground meat will have a ratio of 15-25% fat in it.
  • If your cut of meat doesn’t have that, ask whoever is behind the counter if they can throw in some fat for you to add to your meat.

To make delicious ground beef for hamburgers from scratch use:

2 parts chuck to 1 part brisket or flank steak.


If you have a package of stewing beef in the freezer, it’s the perfect thing to turn into ground beef! 

It’s already cubed & usually has plenty of fat. It’s perfect.

That tough, cheap steak that’s been sitting in the freezer for a year, it can also be turned into ground beef!


WAYS TO GRIND MEAT

With a hand crank grinder.

One way to grind your own meat is by using a hand grinder that you clamp to your counter.

  1. Clamp the grinder to your counter with a bowl beneath it.
  2. Cut your fat and meat into cubes small enough to fit into the funnel of your grinder. Freeze them for about half an hour to firm them up and help prevent them from getting sticky and pasty when you grind.
  3. Feed the cubes into the top funnel of the grinder, pushing down with the tamper.
  4. Whirl away on that handle until all your cubes are ground.
  5. Then do this again two more times with the already ground meat to get the proper consistency of ground beef.

With a Cuisinart (Food processor)

A Cuisinart can do a fairly good job of grinding meat as long as the meat is partially frozen. It shouldn’t be frozen solid, just firm.  Partially freezing the meat is also the easiest way to cut steaks from a roast. I do this all the time. I buy a large tenderloin roast and then cut it into individual steaks.

To grind with a food processor:

  1. Cut your fat and meat into 1″ cubes trimming off the silverskin (that’s the rubbery, very tough tissue). The cubes need to be small so they grind quickly and easily.
  2. Drop cubes of meat into the Cuisinart until the container is half full.

  1. Pulse 10X for one second each time and assess your meat. If the consistency looks good, you’re done. If not, pulse a few more times.
  2. Remember PULSE, do not run the Cuisinart steady. If you do you’ll end up with pasty baby-food like meat.

  1. Once I’ve finished grinding, I poke around looking for gross bits, like silverskin that I missed or hard fat that didn’t get ground up.

Poking around for chunks of fat or silverskin is only necessary if you use a food processor for grinding. An actual grinder (hand or electric) will take care of those things.


With a Stand Mixer Attachment with grinding attachment.

*note, you don’t have to buy the expensive, stainless Kitchen Aid grinder, less expensive ones work just fine on it.

Along with an electric meat grinder, a stand mixer will give you great ground beef. It’s done exactly the same as using a hand crank grinder.

  1. Cut your fat and meat into cubes small enough to fit into the funnel of your grinder. Freeze them for about half an hour to firm them up and help prevent them from getting sticky and pasty when you grind.
  2. Meanwhile, plug your stand mixer in and attach the grinding attachment with the finer grinding plate. Set a bowl under the grinding attachment.
  3. Feed the partially frozen cubes into the top funnel of the grinder, pushing down with the tamper.
  4. Process until all your cubes are ground.
  5. Then do this again two more times with the already ground meat to get the proper consistency of ground beef.
How to Grind your own Beef

How to Grind your own Beef

How to grind your own meat with a hand grinder, food processor or Kitchen Aid with grinder attachment.

Materials

  • Knife
  • Beef, Chicken, Lamb or Venison

Tools

  • Hand meat grinder
  • Food processor
  • or
  • Kitchen Aid

Instructions

Hand Grinder

  1. Clamp the grinder to your counter with a bowl beneath it.
  2. Cut your fat and meat into cubes small enough to fit into the funnel of your grinder. Freeze them for about half an hour to firm them up and help prevent them from getting sticky and pasty when you grind.
  3. Feed the cubes into the top funnel of the grinder, pushing down with the tamper.
  4. Whirl away on that handle until all your cubes are ground.
  5. Then do this again two more times with the already ground meat to get the proper consistency of ground beef.

Food Processor

  1. Cut your fat and meat into 1″ cubes trimming off the silverskin (that’s the rubbery, very tough tissue). The cubes need to be small so they grind quickly and easily.
  2. Drop cubes of meat into the Cuisinart until the container is half full.
  3. Pulse 10X for one second each time and assess your meat. If the consistency looks good, you’re done. If not, pulse a few more times.
  4. Remember PULSE, do not run the Cuisinart steady. If you do you’ll end up with pasty baby-food like meat.
  5. Once I’ve finished grinding, I poke around looking for gross bits, like silverskin that I missed or hard fat that didn’t get ground up.


Food Processor

  1. Cut your fat and meat into cubes small enough to fit into the funnel of your grinder. Freeze them for about half an hour to firm them up and help prevent them from getting sticky and pasty when you grind.
  2. Meanwhile, plug your stand mixer in and attach the grinding attachment with the finer grinding plate. Set a bowl under the grinding attachment.
  3. Feed the partially frozen cubes into the top funnel of the grinder, pushing down with the tamper.
  4. Process until all your cubes are ground.
  5. Then do this again two more times with the already ground meat to get the proper consistency of ground beef.

Notes

Partially freezing the meat helps stop it from becoming like baby food.

How to Grind Beef Meat

 

If you’re looking for another way to use ground beef, I’d go for my spaghetti and meatball recipe that’s delicious. Not just because it’s my recipe, so of course I think it’s delicious, but because IT’S DELICIOUS.

Even though we’re heading into spring here in the Northern Hemisphere, comfort food might be sticking around for a while in this house.

 

→Follow me on Instagram where I often make a fool of myself←

 

How to Easily Grind Your Own Beef.

37 Comments

  1. Kat says:

    “Because even peeing is an ordeal when you have 3 or 4 kids.

    Give it a shot.”

    LOL! ;’)

  2. Benjamin says:

    I love the red nail polish for the bloody occasion of meat grinding… You go ghoul.

  3. Chrissy says:

    Why is this stupid comment still here?

  4. Jan in Waterdown says:

    Wow, seeing the pic of that old style meat grinder was a real blast from the past! My mom had one just like it with interchangeable hole plate thingies with different hole sizes. Back in the 50’s and 60’s I remember it clamped to our grey marble arborite kitchen table where she ground up leftover cooked roast beef to make shepherds pie. Thanks for the happy memory.

  5. Julie says:

    Love this! I have been grinding my own meat for years, first with a hand grinder and then with a Kitchen-Aid attachment. I like to think of it as my Play-Doh Fun Factory…

  6. Vikki says:

    Thank you for giving us moments of sanity in this crazy world. (bet you never thought you would hear that, eh?)

  7. Ann Roberts says:

    We grind our own meat all the time. One thing that really helps is to cube the meat you are going to use and then partially freeze it. Put it thru a larger hole plate first then regrind with the much smaller hole plate. I have done my ground meat with out the freezing and with and beleive me, the end result is so much better with the frozen meat….

  8. Sara says:

    Your ground beef looks good. We raised beef cattle so I know 1 or 2 things, maybe not. Cattle sold. No ground beef anywhere. My dear son, Patrick, was celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, not Irish, just Patrick. I told him of the no ground beef problem. He said Mom, call me a couple of days before you come to the store and I will have your ground beef and anything else. My sweet son manages a grocery store. I would help with the beef but I live in Florida.

  9. I’ve been putting off grinding my own beef because someone told me it was almost impossible to get the grinder really clean.

    After stuffing old bread down it … Then what, please?

    Thanks so much!!

    PS: Love this blog…a lot! Share it all the time.

    • Elaine says:

      My mother ground her own meat all the time during the war when we lived in England. When done, she pushed some crusts of bread through then all the grinder parts went into hot, sudsy water. I’m still here, obviously, at age 80 … you’ll be fine, Susan. Years ago, I gave my Mum’s old grinder to my daughter – I think we’ll dig it out again – thanks, Karen. Keep well everybody!

  10. Chris says:

    What is it with the ground meat and toilet paper and now potatoes? It’s the same here in Australia. Is there some secret virus cure that requires these 3 ingredients?

  11. Somehow your blog fell off the favorites list on my laptop, and I just thought about it today and realized that I had a giant Karen sized hole in my heart.
    I’m back!! I’ve missed your writing holy cow. I need a good laugh.

  12. Sheila says:

    You garden like I do it seems. I’m in zone 5b and planted luffas. Yeah. I know. Slim chance I’ll get any luffas to grow but I’m stubborn and wanted to grow luffas so I planted luffa seeds. Actually did amazingly well all things considered. Six plants survived transplanting to my garden, a few weeks later I was down to three and a few weeks after that I had one plant left. But that one plant! I grew a luffa! I was terribly excited! It was probably close to a foot long! The season was nearing its end and I was impatiently waiting to pick my one and only luffa. It was not to be. My guess is luffas are very tasty to deer. It just disappeared. There one day and gone the next. I cried. (No, I didn’t. It was only a plant! One that I gave life to sure, but still only a plant. What? Do you think I’m seriously that sensitive that I would cry over a plant? I got my revenge that year…and had lots of nice venison in my freezer:).) I still have to figure out what I’m doing with all my Cherokee Trail of Tears Beans though. I’ve planted them a couple of years now. You know for the historical nature of the plant, and because the beans are purple, and the flowers are a pretty shade of pink. I saved seeds from last year and grew even more this year! But I have yet to cook anything with them. I know. Why do I grow things in my vegetable garden if not to eat them? I don’t know. I just like growing things. Different things. Like the year I bought bush bean seeds. I even saved the packet the bean seeds came in. It clearly said “Blue Lake Bush Beans #127” on the outside. Turns out my bush beans weren’t so bushy and I had to put up a trellis for them. Now I grow my “not so bushy bush beans” every year. They still aren’t very bushy. But I have to try. I may get bush beans out of those seeds yet. I may just try amaranth this next season. If nothing more than to see if I can’t get it to spread like wild fire through the community garden like someone got their sunflowers to. Wild amaranth grows there. Maybe I’ll invent a new strain of amaranth. It could happen.

  13. Cheapdiva says:

    Oh, thank God I finally found you! For 60+ years I have KNOWN my mother gave birth to twins, but being a tortured soul only kept one – me. You were lucky to have been given up! You got our father’s sense of humor so I know you are my long lost twin😉

  14. melony says:

    Oh I watch this when it first came out. My ex-husband also worked in Chicken factory, you know when you see the trucks with chickens alive stuffed in little pens heading to the chicken factory. HE WOULD not eat chicken ever again.

  15. Teresa says:

    I can’t believe I just found this blog. Love it! And now I feel confident about using my meat grinder attachment that I have had for at least a year.

    Excuse me now while I lose myself in exploring your website??

    • Karen says:

      Well I can’t believe you just found it either Teresa. I’ve been here forever! ;) Have fun exploring. I use my meat grinder a LOT for doing ground chicken for chicken burgers. LOVE it. ~ karen!

  16. Pat says:

    I love your blog, and especially your sense of humor. I have one request: due to eye issues of mine, watching videos is difficult, so I print out recipes when possible and view them when I can. Would it be a big deal to put the printed version of your recipes and instructions in your blog? I don’t know anything about this stuff, so I don’t know if it would be hard or easy. Just asking. Thanks!!

  17. Jody says:

    Happy TAODS Anniversary! And thank you for teaching me stuff and making me laugh..

    • Karen says:

      Ha! I didn’t even know. Thanks Jody! :) I think I actually opened the blog for business on March 4th, but had my posts in there ready to go on the 1st. 6 years! Holy crap! I think that’s the longest I’ve ever held a single job. ~ karen!

  18. John Brehm says:

    I have been grinding my own meat for several years. I use a chuck roast and the Kitchenaid grinder attachment. I freeze the grinder parts and cut the meat into 1-2″ cubes and freeze 30 minutes. I place bowel that will catch meat over a layer of ice. Grinding is very easy. My question is although the burgers taste great I have a hard time keeping the meat intact while forming the patties. I do not add anything to meat before making patties. Anyone have any idea why this is happening? Is it normal?

    • Karen says:

      Hi John. Yes, I know exactly what’s happening. You have no “binder”. The meat needs some kind of binder to make it stick together. Egg is the most common binder people add to their hamburgers. Also adding bread crumbs will help the burgers from being too “loose”. Barring those two things you can also try adding a tablespoon of flour to every pound of beef. ~ karen!

  19. Julie says:

    Great tip with the old bread trick. I spray it with some hydrogen peroxide too just to make sure. While the cuts with the higher fat ratio are the best for hamburgers, they aren’t always on sale. We’ve been grinding for at least 10 years and often it’s the lean meats that end up in our grinder. I have found that adding eggs and onions helps a lot with the leaner meat. So if you are on a slim budget, the leaner meats can still be used.

  20. Alliey says:

    Just now reading through your archives. I like you because you remind me of me but much prettier and better at writing about the stuff you’re doing. :)

    I grind my own beef too, as I was lucky enough to have been gifted with the Kitchen Aid and have inherited the grinder attachment! I thought I’d pass along a great tip for cleaning out the grinder- take whatever aging bread you might have lying around (probably the heels which no one ever eats anyway) and run a couple slices through after you’re done with the meat. The bread dries up the gunky beef mess and pushes it out so that instead of cleaning out icky cow parts you only have to clean out some bread crumbs. Plus it looks like worms as it extrudes which amuses me. Nice, right?

  21. Yen Azzaro says:

    That was fantastic! Thank you for sharing the video. Food Inc. really changed my eating habits as well. I may just go back to consuming meat after your post. Now if only I could get someone to buy me a Kitchen Aid…

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Yen! I wish I could buy you a Kitchen Aid. But well, ya know … I had to have someone buy one for me. :) Heck, just go to http://www.thepioneerwoman.com. She seems to give about one away a week!

      • Lolly says:

        I just found this blog from design*sponge, and was going through old posts (love the writing!). Funnily enough, I clicked through to the Pioneer Woman’s blog following this comment, and, sure enough, she’s giving away two this week. Always timely advice, I suppose.

        • Karen says:

          Thanks for coming to visit Lolly! Yeah … that Pioneer Woman’s always giving something great away. At this point I couldn’t even afford the postage let alone the Cuisinarts, SLR Cameras and Blenders. Nope.

    • Jacquie Gariano says:

      On the Kitchen Aid Web site you will find refurbished Mixers and equipment. I found on for my daughter for only$200.00. They might also have the attachments needed. Check it out.

  22. Gaynell says:

    LOL LOL LOL…..you know what happened…i fell into the trap..”BECAUSE NOW I MAKE THE MOST DELICIOUS HAMBURGERS EVER!” I am still laughing.

    Seriously, reading your stuff is fun!

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