Pre-packaged meat definitely has it’s conveniences – first and foremost, that it’s already ground for you! But there are some serious benefits to buying a cut of meat and grinding it yourself. Aren’t sure what the benefits are? Not sure how to grind your own beef anyways? America’s Test Kitchen is here to show you how! Watch the video below to learn the benefits of grinding your own beef and how to do it right at home.

So why is grinding your own meat so great?

Well, it gives you the freedom to you choose the right cut (or cuts, if you want to blend of meats) that best compliments the meal you’re making. You can also decide to grind the meat into larger or smaller pieces, depending on your needs or preferences.

Most important of all, grinding your own meat let’s you know firsthand where that meat came from. Pre-packaged meat is often multiple cows in a package (which is just awful to think about), and can have contaminants from the packaging process. Grinding your own meat gives you the peace of mind of knowing your cut wasn’t expose to that process.

How you do grind your own meat?

As you might have guessed, you could use a meat grinder, but it’s unlikely that you have one hanging around your kitchen. If you do, rock on. If you don’t, don’t worry, you can use a food processor to get the same results – you’re more likely to have that in your cupboard right now!

Although this tutorial is on a beef cut, this technique works the same way on pork, chicken, lamb, or turkey, too. (But, for chicken or turkey, make sure to stick with dark meat only.)

To prep the cut for the food processor, you want to cut the beef into about one inch size cubes. Make sure to cut off any hard fat or muscle as you’re cubing. Leave on SOME soft fat, but the hard fat is best to dispose of.

When the meat it cut, place them on a large plate or baking sheet, and put it in the freezer to chill for about 20 minutes. This will help the meat grind correctly.

20 minutes later you’re ready to grind! Don’t stuff your food processor with too much meat – you’ll just jam it that way. Pulse the cubes in the processor in small batches – this usually consists of 15-20 one second pulses.

Once it’s the right size, pour the meat out onto a baking sheet or into a bowl. Repeat with the remaining batches of meat and there you have it! Your very own, homemade ground meat. You are on your way to a season of better grilling!