Meat Grinder Recommendations...
- lestblight Feb 13, 2010 02:45 PM
Looking to make my own sausages mainly... nothing crazy or anything.. looking for a good grinder..
2 options.. Kitchen aid attachment or a standalone with a sausage stuffer
what do you recommend?
im looking at this one..
recommend a different one?
also.. what do you use for casings?
are there advantages and disadvantages to some? or does it not matter?
My experience has been that the motor powered grinders - mid-range from Cabelas - are OK. My experience has been that they seem a bit small for the job.
I know someone who has used the horn-style stuffer, didn't like it much, so he just got a heavy-duty stuffer from Cabelas (11 lb capacity, metal gears), which is worlds better. If you are going to buy the meat from a butcher, have the butcher grind it for you - should be no charge. If you are grinding game, that won't work, though. If the meat is pre-ground, all you have to do is mix in the spices in and stuff it.
We made 60 pounds of pork sausage for soupy two weeks ago. We got the pork in 10# bags from the butcher, mixed the spices in 10# batches, ran the batches through the stuffer, it was like 'buttah'. The sausage is now hanging in my garage and will be ready in early April.
We've used natural casings. Last time we used pork, but decided the soupy was too small, so this time we used cow. You have to clean and soak them beforehand, which is a bit of work.
That Northern Tool grinder is the one I use and it is indeed pretty good. It looks like models you might find at BB&B and the like, but has a wider diameter and larger capacity (and I believe it's a bit less pricy). I used a hand grinder in the past, and if you also buy a stuffer that will be a perfectly fine choice. But you need to permanently mount a hand grinder on your countertop (or come up with some sort of clamping arrangement). An electric grinder takes up a bit more storage space, but you can just take it out, plug it in, and go to work. That's the main reason I got rid of my hand crank grinder.
Northern Tool also has some decently priced stuffers. For natural or collagen casings try Butcherpacker.com.
Ok... so after looking at the thread on sausage stuffers and looking at some.. i think i may be more confused.
This is what i want.. I want multiple plates to get a smaller grind.
unless i can just run in it in twice?
I have not been seeing good reviews on the hand cranked models..
so im in doubts over this...http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wc...
also i have a KA mixer and i can opt for the attachment which comes with different plates.. but i keep reading it deposits shavings in the meat? anyone have that problem?
then i come to this one the electric
Looks like it comes with multiple plates and can stuff my sausages for me.
I would prefer a by hand model... but this seems cheaper then getting the grinder and stuffer
should i just get the KA grinder? i would still have to get a stuffer..
i dont mind the shelf space//
If you don't mind the shelf space then get a dedicated stand alone grinder. I have the KA attachment. Many here love it. I guess my KA mixer is older and not as strong as some of the models out there because it struggles with partially frozen meat which has been cut into strips and the KA attachment is not cheap when compared to light to medium duty stand alone grinders. I haven't had shavings from my KA attachement but I was getting black grease from the motor in my meat.
I have not made sausage with casings but I know that most of these grinders attachments for sausage are frustrating. A piston type stuffer is going to work a lot better where you are using the pressure of the piston to force the meat out into the casing compared to trying to get the screw drive to move the meat into the casing using a grinder.
Regarding grinding plates, they come in standard diameters and most grinders of any type come with plates for coarse, medium, and fine grinds. If necessary you can measure the diameter and buy additional plates from Northern Tool or others.
I gave my hand grinder to a guy who knew it would be some extra work and he would need to drill some holes in his counter top, but he wanted to be old school. I respect that, but if you just want to save $50 or $60 go with the KA attachment or the Northern Tool model instead.
I recently got "Pragotrade Meat Grinder and Sausage Stuffer" from Bed, Bath and Beyond:
It has everything you need and more:
- clamps to table or counter;
- fine and coarse grinding plates;
- stuffing star;
- flange and 3 stuffing funnels;
All this for only $40.
I have used my grinder attachment on the Kitchen Aid mixer to make pate. No problem as long as the meat is cold. I cant conceive that the sausage attachment (which I have but have not used yet) would change that. I wouldn't go for another grinder if you have the Kitchen Aid
I have the KA attachment and It works for me. I'm not grinding a lot of meat at a time or the parts with a lot of tough connective fibers. I grind up the end of a roast to make some hash or stew meat to make burgers and it's more than equal to those jobs.
I haven't had a problem with it grinding any plastic parts (tho I have had that problem with WS alligator choppers so I know what you're talking about). I also have an older 70s KA mixer so it may have more power or be more durable than more contemporary machines.