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View Full Version : Upgrade to dedicated meat grinder.. will I notice the difference?


bergenguy
08-10-2016, 10:15 PM
My B-Day is coming up and my wife is looking for ideas. As I'm now making more sausage, I thought a dedicated 'good' grinder might be a decent idea. I've been using the Kitchen Aid grinder attachment on my 350 Watt (Max) stand mixer so far. For the amount I've been grinding to this point it's not without its minor annoyances, but overall it's been OK. The grinder that I am thinking about is the LEM #5 .25HP Big Bite ($249 on amazon)

My questions is - Will I notice a difference in going from the KA attachment to the LEM? My concern is that nominally speaking the .25 HP (188 Watts) is less than the 350 watt KA.... although the KA is a max rating, so who knows what the average wattage is when you're at grinding speed. Primarily, the things that sometimes bother me with the KA are:
- sometimes it doesn't really cut through excessive sinew and it then gums up the knives causing smearing,
- meat gets pushed out of the side of the plate collar which makes a minor mess,
- I get some black oily residue in the meat from the rubbing between the knives. auger end and plate,
- and lastly, the grind just doesn't seem as 'clean' and defined as the ground meat you see coming out of a commercial grinder.

If I 'upgrade' to the #5 LEM, will these things improve?

As to use - I occasionally will grind 8 to 16 pounds of pork shoulder for sausage... maybe once a month, if I get a deer, I will grind a fair amount of venison.... if I'm lucky, I will be grinding goose and duck breasts consistently during the hunting season.

PS. I will only be using the grinder for grinding as I already have the LEM vertical stuffer. Also, if anyone has any recommendations for a grinder in the same price range as the LEM #5... I'd be interested to hear those as well

Thanks in advance for your replies!

BillN
08-10-2016, 10:19 PM
A dedicated grinder is more efficient others will chime in on this particular model. Never done/ground the goose/duck breast, how much fat/ratio do grind into it?

StanDaMan79
08-11-2016, 01:39 AM
I started with the same setup as you, and went to a dedicated grinder and stuffer. I'm using a generic 3500 unit, on loan from my son in law. 2 speed, with reverse too, much faster. I put the meat grinding unit in the freezer, and have found that cubing the meat lets it grind faster then strips, seems less fat winds up bound around the plate. Is it worth the extra bit of time to cube it up? I think so, I seldom have to push it through, which is helpful.

The biggest time saving, came with using a dedicated stuffer, also loaned to me. a 15lb capacity, 2 speed, HORIZONTAL stuffer. Never knew you could get something other then a vertical, but I love this one. Its far easier on my old shoulders, not having to hold my arm up over my head.
If I could only have one of these, I'd pick the stuffer. Luckily, I dont have too.

mikemci
08-11-2016, 08:03 AM
That grinder will be a big improvement from the KA. Get it!

gcs
08-11-2016, 12:10 PM
The LEM grinder is better, did you check LEM website? lot of times they have a sale,or special, I didn't pay that much from them direct.

chipmanbbq
08-11-2016, 12:17 PM
Get a dedicated grinder. You won't regret it. I made two batches of brats before I finally had enough of the KA. KA is a good machine, but if you grind more than 5lbs of meat per year it's well worth the couple hundred bucks for a dedicated grinder.

TedW
08-11-2016, 01:40 PM
http://www.lemproducts.com/product/improved-big-bite-grinder-5/butcher-meat-grinders

Bperkins01
08-11-2016, 01:44 PM
I did the same thing.
Here is what I noticed: You grind so much meat soooooo fast - you feel ripped off!
i.e. I spent $250 and I just ground up 15 pounds of meat in 5 minutes.. Went too fast!
It just seemed like it should take longer..

It is a better cut and way faster.
Good choice!

Okie Sawbones
08-11-2016, 03:56 PM
Yes.

Maylar
08-11-2016, 04:14 PM
I would step up to something bigger than a #5.
I have one of these, and it'll grind chicken with the bones for my home made cat food -

http://www.onestopjerkyshop.com/tasin-ts-108-electric-meat-grinder-1/

An excellent machine, and it's even cheaper than the LEM.

TedW
08-11-2016, 04:20 PM
I would step up to something bigger than a #5.
I have one of these, and it'll grind chicken with the bones for my home made cat food -

http://www.onestopjerkyshop.com/tasin-ts-108-electric-meat-grinder-1/

An excellent machine, and it's even cheaper than the LEM.

That's a very helpful post and that's so great you feed raw.

bergenguy
08-11-2016, 08:53 PM
Thank You all for your input. I've decided to go for it. I see that Academy is selling the .35 H #8 LEM for $279.... so I may go for that instead of the #5. But I'm definitely getting something.

Re. the question on goose/duck breasts.. wild ones are exceptionally lean. So you have to add some fatback to get to your 30% rule of thumb ratio. It also doesn't hurt to cut it with some pork shoulder, softens the flavor up a bit (particularly with Canada Goose) IMO

Okie Sawbones
08-11-2016, 09:22 PM
I have the #8. I make a lot of sausage. No complaints.