HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >


Help w/ New Kitchenaid Meat Grinder

All this talk of building a better burger encouraged me to go out and buy a kitchenaid meat grinder attachment. So last night, I tried it with some chuck and sirloin to make burgers. As we were sending the meat through, some gray grease looking stuff started coming out of the middle area where the grinding disk attaches onto the shaft. It got on some of the meat, which we picked out. But has this happened to anyone else? It was the first time using an attachment on my 5 year old mixer. Could there just be grease build up? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated as we're planning meatballs for tonight!


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Sounds like some residual manufacutring lubricant. It's always a good idea to thoroughly wash new kitchen equipment for just this reason.

    3 Replies
    1. re: pikawicca

      Yeah, we did wash it pretty good (by hand, though, we don't have a dishwasher). But maybe it was just a first time use thing...?

      1. re: jenhen2

        Washing by hand should have been enough. Was your meat well-chilled? If not, there could have been some separation of fat (although I don't kno9w why it would have been grayish).

        1. re: pikawicca

          Thanks for the thought. We actually semi-froze the meet, so it was pretty cold. Hopefully someone out there can help me with this. I thought it was a little gross.

    2. It is just smudge from the metal. If you would run some stale bread through there a couple of times it should take care of it.

      A tip I learned from Keller's Bouchon book I think is so wizard i have to keep passing on is when you are grinding and you get to the last chunk of what ever it is, if you will push a folded piece of plastic wrap down in to the hopper it will push out every last bit of meat or whatever and the plastic will not grind. I used to go through the putting a chunk of bread in there to get it all out but that was a pain if you did not want bread in what you had ground.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Candy

        Great tip! Thanks so much for the help. I'll try it next time we grind!

        1. re: Candy

          I'll have to try that next time, I hate seeing a little bit of meat left over that could have been used for sausage or hamburger.

          In response to the OP, I still get a little of the black stuff, and I am very careful about keeping it clean. I try to pick it out, but I can't get it all. I don't worry about it too much because I can just imagine what is in the ground meat at the supermarket.

        2. Just had this same thing happen. Grinding beef, small dark, oily stuff starts coming out. Read OP and called Kitchenaid help line. Woman took me through checking to see if the mixer had a broken seal -- unplug, put some paper towel into the port where the attachments attach, see if oil is coming from the stand itself as evidenced by black oil / lubricant on the papertowel. If you see black lubricant on the papertowel, the mixer needs servicing. (ugh) If there's no lubricant on the papertowel, the oil is coming from the metal of the attachement itself. The lubricant is part of the metal itself. Wipe off any excess, but the KA help line told me that the oil is foodsafe and will not harm you if you eat any. I did pick out the small bits that were in the ground beef.

          1. I also had this happen a couple of years ago and I emailed KA about the situation. At the time, they told me that the black stuff happens when the meat grinder gets too hot and they suggested freezing the meat slightly before grinding to help cool down the grinder parts. I do that now and I haven't had any more problems.

            But, I've also heard that this type of thing happens on a new grinder because the grinding pieces are 'mating" (?) and the result of this is that the grinder oozes black grease when new. So, that also might be why the problem with mine has stopped.

            So, you might want to try throwing your meat in the freeze a bit before grinding it and see if this helps.

            Good luck!

            1 Reply
            1. re: MEH

              This happens to me every time. Tonight it happened with FROZEN meat. It's machine grease. The temperature of the product does not matter!

            2. I've used my grinder attachment quite a bit and I've never had this happen. I do meticulously clean it after every use. There are areas where crud can build up and you have to watch them closely. The square shoulder where the cutting blade locks to the shaft almost always has junk in the bottoms of the shoulder and I use a dental pick to clean it out. It can build up over time and go un-noticed. It also helps in operation if you wipe both the cutting blade and the plate with a food grade mineral oil. With the exception of the square drive shaft at the rear of the unit, I put a coat of mineral oil on all the metal parts. It seems to help with operation of the unit as a whole.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Grillncook

                I use to clean my KA meat grinder attachment meticulously as well and still got this machine grease in my meat. My KA motor would strain when grinding partially frozen meat. The grease is coming from the motor shaft that's part of the mixer.

                This is the main reason why I purchased a dedicated meat grinder with a much larger motor. The cost of this grinder wasn't much more than the KA attachment.

              2. The gray grease you are seeing is a food grade grease and it is coming from the worm drive in the grinder attachment. There is really nothing you can do about it since it is coming out as a result of the pressure from grinding meat. It happens to all new grinder attachments and the excess grease should dissipate over time with use. Since the grease is food grade it is not harmful. Just pick it out if you spot it, otherwise it is nothing to be concerned about.

                1. I read somewhere that you were supposed to "prime" the meat grinder by running some bread through it. Did you?

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: JudiAU

                    Prime? This might be done after the meat is ground to push the residual meat out. Not sure how it would prime it on the first go round. I try to keep all parts in the freezer till ready to grind. You can also girnd a couple of ice cubes to chill down the insides of the grinder. Just pour off the water unless you want it in your ground meat.

                  2. Ugh. This happened to me, too, the first two times I used my grinder. Believe me, it was NOT a pretty sight in pimento cheese. In fact, it was so discouraging and gross I've never used it since....and that was five years ago. Maybe I quit just before the problem would have fixed itself?

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Beckyleach

                      Thanks for all the above information! I just got my meat grinder for my KA Artisan yesterday. I am now in the process of trying it out for the first time. I washed all grinder attachments in hot soapy water and now have them (and the meat cubes) chilling in the freezer. I am using 1 pound of chuck roast and 1 pound of sirloin and am going to make hamburger. Or at least that is the plan. In reference to the original post, I would like to think that the KA people used food-grade lubricants, but am not positive.

                      1. re: Doubledareya

                        Run a test trial with white bread first.

                    2. I just bought the meat grinder from Kitchenaid. I tried to mince chicken breast. It was chilled, but the big blade kept getting clogged and I spent most of the time unclogging the meat. I had cut out most of the fat. Please help

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: SK12345

                        Was the blade in place in in behind the plate with the holes in it? Sounds like this would happen if the blade was not in place. Chilled lean chicken should grind easily.