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What to Look for When Purchasing a Commercial Meat Grinder

Meat grinders are essential tools in any home kitchen, restaurant, commercial processing facility or other facility that has a desire to chop, mix or process meat. In a nutshell, a meat grinder is an appliance that replaces a mincing knife, making the task of meat processing much more efficient.

The origins of the meat grinder date all the way back to the 19th century by a German revolutionist. These early grinders were hand cranked and forced the meat into a metal plate that was dotted with several holes, which thereby processed thin, long strands of meat. As time moved on and as technology improved, much of the manual hand cranking involved with these older meat grinders was eventually replaced with electricity.

The meat grinder is still used today, commercially in the likes of restaurants. But today’s meat grinder is a far cry from the early days of the grinder. Today, there are many options and features to choose from when it comes to grinders of the commercial variety. This post is designed to provide more insight and analysis on just what you should be looking for when you’re in the market to purchase a new commercial meat grinder.

What type of meat grinder do I need?

As we noted earlier, meat grinders have come a long way since they were first invented in the 19th century. Today, there are three main types of meat grinders: manual grinders, standalone grinders and grinder attachments. We’ll briefly examine these types below:

  • Manual grinders: Similar to the original meat grinder, a manual grinder fittingly requires the user to turn a crank or a lever to process the meat. Typically, these types of grinders are best suited for environments where there isn’t a need to process large amounts of meat. It’s also best utilized in areas of the country where electricity might not be readily available. Most manual grinders are made from cast iron steel and some are even coated in aluminum or other metals.
  • Standalone grinders: Standalone grinders are those that are most synonymous with commercial industry, mainly for the fact that they are electrically powered. For this reason, standalone grinders are also commonly known as “electric meat grinders.” Because they’re so automated, they’re best utilized in environments which have to process large quantities of meat. While they’re more expensive than a manual grinder, they also come with more plate options for grinding and processing different types of meats.
  • Grinder attachments: These typically are more suited to the household market than to the commercial one in that these are grinder attachments that connect and work with other kitchen devices, such as food processors and mixers.

Do you need a conventional grinder or a frozen one?

While we already covered the three main types of grinders in the above section, there are various sub categories of grinders as it pertains to their capabilities. For instance, some grinders are just designed to grind and process thawed meat, while others are designed to process frozen meat. These “frozen” meat grinders are able to process blocks of meat in temperatures as low as negative 25 degrees Celsius. Before purchasing a meat grinder, be sure you know whether or not you’ll need it to work with frozen or thawed meat (or both).

Do I need my grinder to do anything special?

We already covered one special task that you need to know whether or not you need your meat grinder to accomplish in the processing of frozen meat, but there are a few other special things that you need to keep in mind. For instance, one other task that many want their meat grinders to be able to do is process bone, soft bone to be specific. Some meat grinders are able to do this, others are not able to do this. So if your restaurant or commercial facility deals with the likes of prime rib or other meats that might include a soft bone, you’re likely going to want to choose a model that’s able to process this. It’s another thing to take into consideration.

How much meat do I need to process?

Just how much meat do you need to process? The answer to this question will more or less dictate what type of grinder you’re going to want to acquire. For instance, as we covered above, if you don’t process a lot of meat, you can probably get away with buying a manual grinder. But if you process a lot of meat, an electric grinder is almost always the right way to go. Generally speaking, the more meat you’ll need to process, the bigger the motor you’ll need on your meat processor. You wouldn’t attempt to tow a boat in a sedan vehicle now would you? No, you’d select the truck or SUV for that. Think of meat grinders similarly. If you’re only looking to make a batch of hamburgers every now and then, you don’t need a very powerful meat grinder. But if you’re processing all kinds of meats and crafting all different kinds of foods, make sure you’re purchasing a meat grinder with the ability to handle such capacity.

What’s my budget?

Last but not least, there’s the aspect of cost when it comes to the purchase of a commercial meat grinder. There’s always the challenge of acquiring a product that is able to fit within the budget you’ve set aside for it. Meat grinders are hardly the most expensive piece of equipment that you’ll likely need in your restaurant or commercial facility, but they can still put a decent dent in the wallet, as they range in price anywhere from several hundred dollars to several thousand dollars. While many businesses can absorb these costs, many others are looking for a more affordable upfront cost, especially those who are just opening a restaurant. For these businesses, buying from a credible, reliable source such as Bid on Equipment could be the best route to take. Because of the turnover rate of the restaurant and food business, Bid on Equipment regularly receives lightly used grinders that it is able to turn around and sell for a fraction of the like-new price.


There is a lot to consider when it comes to the purchase of a new commercial meat grinder, from style to additional features and, of course, to price. But price should never be something that stands in the way of you and the equipment you need. That’s where we come in at Bid on Equipment. Visit our website to browse our selection of meat grinders today.

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