A lot of people have been asking: “Can a blender grind meat?”
Blenders are a pretty versatile kitchen appliance. You can use them to make smoothies, soups, sauces, and even grind meat! But there a lot of things you should first be aware of when blending meat.
For those of you who have never ground meat in a blender before, it is not as hard as it may seem. There are just some precautions that go along with using the machine for this purpose.
We’re going to take a look at what’s safe and what’s not safe to do when it comes to ground beef in the blender; also talk about minced meat, hamburger meat, and making sausages.
So the question we want to ask is can you grind meat in a Vitamix?
The answer is yes. Most Vitamix blenders have motors with more than 2 peak horsepower. This equates to an impressive 1,400 watts. This means that it is fully capable of shredding through any type of meat you put in. The blades shouldn’t have any issues with this job. However, there are certain things you can and can’t do when grinding meat.
Let’s get into the meat of this.
Best practices when grinding meat with a Vitamix blender
The Vitamix is a powerful blender with high-performance abilities made for the serious user. Some people love it while others think it’s too expensive and overkill, likely because they aren’t familiar with using them.
The blender’s powerful blades are a great way to make healthy soups, smoothies, and more.
Funny enough, the topic of the matter was brought up to a Vitamix representative. The response was “yes and no,” said a representative from the Vitamix Corporation.
They also added, “The Vitamix is a powerful machine and can shred meat when used properly.”
But there are some things you should keep in mind to get the best results every time.
The idea that a Vitamix could be useful in a kitchen other than just pureeing soup might have seemed crazy, but now it’s what a lot of chefs use to make their meatballs, hamburgers, and sausages.
The idea of using a Vitamix to grind beef is not new at all. In fact, it’s been around for years now! And funny enough, it’s just an off-labeled skill.
Don’t wash your meat
It’s a common mistake that consumers make in the kitchen about washing their meat or chicken. Washing meat or chicken before cooking can actually lead to cross-contamination.
This is because the water that you wash your meat in will have bacteria on its surface. When those droplets of contaminated liquid hit other surfaces or foods, they’ll spread their germs around too!
According to the USDA.gov, modern food safety systems don’t require washing your meat or chicken.
If you don’t eat it, freeze it
It’s also advised that after making you ground meat, make sure you freeze it. This will help to prevent any bacteria from growing that might have been present on the meat before you ground it up!
The cold prevents bacteria from growing.
I would also recommend you to freeze in smaller portions so they’ll thaw faster when needed. Plus you don’t have to eat it all at once.
The USDA recommends freezing raw hamburger (meat and poultry) patties for no more than 4 months.
And unfortunately, if you leave raw meat in the regular fridge, you’ll only get 3-5 days before it goes bad.
Don’t grind the bones
While the Vitamix can potentially grind softer bones, it may fail after grinding harder bones.
The Vitamix is not designed to grind bones and the blades may get stuck in them, causing a mess! You may even burn out the motor and dull the blades.
Another reason why you must take out the bones is that they won’t blend well with the meat. You’ll produce a mixture of meat and bone.
You’ll also have to deal with the bones in every bite when you’re done, which can be a pain in itself!
Freshness tip while freezing
This is a low-key hack but when you store your meat in the fridge, you can add a pinch of baking soda to the stored meat.
Baking soda is a basic compound that will help to keep the meat fresh. It works by raising the pH of the meat and ultimately prevents the proteins from excessively bonding and losing water in the process.
The results show that the ground meat remains tender and juicier when taken out to thaw and cook.
The way to do this is simply to ground up the meat. Then take a small, roughly half a teaspoon amount of baking soda and mix it into the ground meat. You can now cook it, or store it in the freezer for later.
How to grind meat to make ground meat
For those of us who would like to know how to grind your meat using only a blender. These are the steps for you. Be sure to not overload your batches, this could cause jams.
- Cut your meat into 1-inch cubes.
Make sure the meat is still cold. Don’t leave it out and wait until it gets to room temperature. Your meat cuts don’t have to be perfect.
The meat should be cut into cubes, strips, or chunks of any size and shape you like to make it easier for the blender blades when they are spinning at high speeds.
- Start with a small number of pieces.
Don’t just place the entire tray of meat in the first time. You have to allow the blender to take it in one at a time. Start small and work your way up.
The blender blades will have to work harder if you put in too much meat at once, and this can cause the motor to work extra hard and perhaps fail.
- Turn the speed to 1 and increase as needed.
You have to also slowly increase the speed as you blend. You don’t need it to cut really fast, you just want to make sure that the meat is being cut. Start with a low speed and then increase it as needed to get your desired consistency of ground beef, sausage, or chicken.
This is an important part of the blending because you have to keep an eye on the consistency of what you’re blending.
It’s not just about turning on a blender and letting it go until there is nothing left to blend.
- Blend for about 10 to 15 seconds at a time.
Blending for short increments at a time helps you keep an eye on the consistency of what you’re blending.
If it’s too thick, blend a little faster, until it gets to the right consistency.
- Add more meat.
Continue to add more meat at any time you feel that the previous meat is almost there to consistency.
Remember, if you add more meat in, you will be essentially blending the previous meat even more. If its consistency is to your liking, then I would suggest just taking it out and placing it aside, and start a new batch of meat to add on.
If you held off and didn’t blend the first batch too much, you can add more meat and combine the blending.
What is the difference between a Vitamix and a meat grinder
Now you’re probably wondering what makes a Vitamix and a regular meat grinder different. Aren’t they really the same thing?
The fact of the matter is that they are not the same thing.
A Vitamix is a blender that can grind meat, but it cannot be used as an actual grinder for making sausages or hamburger patties out of ground beef and other meats because its blades are blunter. It’s also got a more powerful motor to liquefy the food it takes in. The blender is specially made to turn food into liquid.
A grinder has ridge and razor-sharp blades which allow it to cut through thick foods to accomplish tasks like chopping and shredding.
Fortunately for us, a blender, if used correctly and actively monitored well, can grind meat.
Just make sure you don’t over blend it, or you will turn it into liquid.
My final thoughts
Vitamix and its blades are extremely powerful and can grind up the toughest of meats.
The blades can pulverize and mince all types of meat.
Vitamix is a great tool for making ground meat. It can also be used to make sausages and hamburger patties, but it cannot grind bones.
Be patient when grinding meat in a blender.
If you are not careful, the meat will turn into a liquid. This is because of how powerful Vitamix’s blades can be. Always keep a close eye on your progress.
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