Meat Grinder vs Food Processor – Which is Better at Grinding Meat?

Grinding your meat at home gives you a feeling of freedom as you can choose the preferred texture and cut of meat. You’ll also enjoy making delicious recipes from your ground meat.

You need either a meat grinder or a food processor to grind different kinds of meat. A blender is also a good option for grinding meat if the two aren’t available.

Both meat grinder and food processor are designed for chopping and mincing meat and vegetables. The only difference is that meat ground in a food processor will not be as consistent as in a meat grinder. While both meat grinders and food processors can grind meats like beef well, there are significant differences.

In this article, I’ll take a look at food processors vs meat grinders when it comes to grinding meat, so you know which is better.

Meat Grinder or Food Processor

Meat Grinder

There are two types of grinders, namely, electric and manual. Electric meat grinders are more precise than manual ones. They’re suitable for grinding large chunks of meat. A manual grinder is also very efficient but suitable for grinding small batches of meat occasionally.

A meat grinder is a kitchen appliance that works better than any other in grinding meat. They bring out consistent texture, perfect sizes, and high-quality meat. If you want finely chopped meat for your burgers, meatballs, and sauces use this kitchen appliance. You can also use a meat grinder to grind small bones for bone meals and pet food.

Here are other ways a meat grinder can be used:

  • Making pasta noodles in place of pasta maker
  • Grinding high portions of herbs
  • Crushing and grinding nuts

Food Processor

A food processor is a versatile kitchen tool. It serves several purposes, and several food processor models can grind different types of meat. To ensure your meat turns out well when using a food processor for grinding, you should first freeze it.  You can go a step further with your food preparation and cut your lean meat into small pieces. Put the pieces of meat in the processor and use the pulse function.

A food processor may be used for other purposes such as:

  • Mixing dough for baking or pasta
  • Chopping vegetables
  • Used to slice and grate cheese

Grinding Meat in Meat Grinder or Food Processor: What’s the Difference?

Food processors and meat grinders work well for grinding meat at home and for other purposes such as chopping vegetables. The main difference between a meat grinder and a food processor when it comes to grinding meat is how much meat you intend to grind and the consistency you want to achieve.

For a quick burger or sausages for breakfast, go for a food processor. If you want up to 20 pounds of coarse meat, a meat grinder is a great tool to use. Other factors that differentiate the two include:


Meat grinders come with plates with holes of different sizes. You grind the meat through the holes and spin the blades. The resulting sizes are highly consistent with equal fat distribution. Grinders also feature simple controls such as on, off, and reverse.

Food processors are used for grinding meat by cutting through the chunks using sharp blades. To control the sizes, you have to use the pulse function. You also need to freeze the meat first before processing it, so it doesn’t get too pasty due to over grinding.


Meat grinder blades allow you to control the size of the meat you want by simply choosing the plate you want to use. The grinder comes with different plates screwed next to the cutting blade. The main work of the grinder plate is to control the sizes and grind meat uniformly. You can choose your preferred plate depending on your desired size for different recipes.

Food processors come with S-shaped blades to chop the bits of food by spinning. The blades cut the meat while spinning. The sizes you achieve depend on how long you run the blades. You don’t have much control over the sizes or uniformity of the meat when using a food processor.

Meat Texture

Meat grinders produce finely ground meat with loose chopping and evenly packed. It results in high-quality meat with consistent sizes.

The food processor brings out the uneven texture of the meat. The sizes are not uniform, as some come out large while others are finely chopped. If you over-process, your meat will turn pasty.


Food processors are available in different sizes and feature three parts which are very easy to clean. You can easily handwash the blades. The other parts, such as the cover and bowl, are usually dishwasher-safe.

A meat grinder is more demanding to clean. It comes in five parts that you need to take apart. You also need to run bread to remove the grease from inside the grinder. You can then disassemble the parts, handwash and dry them, and then put them back together.

Cost of Appliance

A food processor is much cheaper than a meat grinder. They usually cost around $20 to over $200 depending on the size and brand. You can still find a decent size from a reliable brand for under $100.

Meat grinders usually come with a much higher price tag. Household meat grinders come in about a $40 to $200 range in price. Electric grinders are much more expensive than manual ones, with their prices ranging from $100 to over $1000.

If you want quality ground meat and can’t afford a meat grinder, you can consider purchasing a meat grinder attachment for the food processor. This costs around $40 depending on the brand.

Which Appliance Grinds Meat Better: A Food Processor or a Meat Grinder?

If you want to achieve consistency and professional quality ground meat, use a meat grinder. The appliance comes in attachments that work well to bring out perfectly ground meat for making different recipes such as sausages and burgers. A grinder is a better choice if you intend to grind large batches of meat regularly.

Grinding meat in a food processor at home also works but you’ll achieve a less consistent texture. If you need to prepare different types of food, especially for kids, you’ll need to use your food processor often. Apart from grinding meat, food processors can make perfect kitchen tool for chopping vegetables, blending sauces, and kneading dough.  A food processor is also usually cheaper than a meat grinder and takes less counter space.


Whether you have a food processor or meat grinder, grinding meat at home is very easy. You can use minced meat to prepare different recipes whenever you crave anything. You don’t always have to rely on store-bought ground meat, which is usually not fresh and hygienic.

Choosing any of these two kitchen appliances depends on how often you need to grind meat and the consistency you want to achieve. Also, remember that a meat grinder is more expensive than a food processor. A food processor is easier to clean than a meat grinder.

Choose your appliance wisely!

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