As we know different meat cuts have different toughness. When we have a whole carcass of an animal we get the tender and the unavoidable tough cuts. If you have a big family to feed I’m sure you often have to shop on a budget or at least be smart about the price and deal with tougher cuts of meat. In order to tenderize the meat you can use powder or acidic marinades, but today we will look at best meat tenderizer machines in 2017, which is a great substitute if you don’t want to add anything to your meat.
Quick summary of best meat tenderizer machines in 2017
Best meat tenderizer overall – Weston Manual Meat Cuber Tenderizer (buy on Amazon)
Best budget meat tenderizer – Guide Gear Cast Iron Manual Meat Tenderizer And Cuber (buy on Amazon)
Best handheld meat tenderizer – Jaccard Supertendermatic 48-Blade Tenderizer (buy on Amazon)
Continue reading for detailed reviews
Weston Manual Meat Cuber Tenderizer, Dual Support
This Weston meat tenderizer machine is one of the best tenderizers on the market. It will fit for a big family who occasionally buy bigger bulks of tough meat or even hunter families who need to process whole deer. Weston manual meat tenderizer will work with cow, elk, venison, chicken or any other animal you have on hand, every meat will come out tender.
This tenderizer machine is aluminum body with heavy duty base and crank handle. It comes with two C-clamps to mount to counters up to 1.5″ thick. It has 31 very sharp stainless steel blades to pierce through even toughest meats and has steel combs to prevent jamming. You can put in steaks up to 1.25“thick. The machine is 7.1″ x 13.7” x 13.5”, weighs 9.9 pounds, so it is very easy to store. It also comes with a one year manufacturer’s warranty.
If you are lazy and don’t want to crank the handle yourself you can buy the Weston speed motor attachment. And for the jerky fans there is a jerky slice blade set for separate purchase.
Weston manual meat tenderizer is easy to set up and use. Just put the meat through the chute on top with your stainless steel tongues, which are included with the machine, and crank the handle. After you are done the machine disassembles into two parts for easy clean up.
This meat tenderizer machine is really sturdy and can handle many pounds of meats, some reviews even showed that it handled numerous deer to tenderize and cube, other customers told that they use it in their small restaurants with no issues.
The two legs and the clamps give great support and along with aluminum body it allows to process mountains of meat.
Some drawbacks when reviewing this product was the C-clamps, they were manufactured pretty poorly. If your counter top is smaller than 1.25” they will not tighten properly, so you might need to get separate ones.
In addition, some customers broke their cranks and to our surprise customer service replaced them free of charge, which is always a good sign when deciding which product to choose.
Overall, Weston is the perfect choice if you need a meat tenderizer machine. It will stay tough despite the amount of meat you need to process or the toughness of meat. It comes at affordable price and has great customer service.
- Tenderizes even toughest meats
- Stainless steel combs prevent meat sticking
- Easy to use and set up
- Compact to store
- Affordable price compared to quality
- Long life span even under heavy use in small restaurants
- Great customer service
- Clamps fit just for 1.25” surfaces
Guide Gear Cast Iron Manual Meat Tenderizer And Cuber
This cast iron baby is no joke. It is all cast iron construction to last for years. For your own safety to protect fingers and guide meat there is a food-grade plastic cover. This meat tenderizer comes with 13″ x 4″ x 15’’ dimensions and clamps up to 1.75” counter tops. It can process cuts up to 4” wide and ½” thick.
This meat tenderizer is easy to use for tenderizing any meat and if you need it cubed just turn the meat 90 degrees and run it through the machine again.
While trying out the machine and looking over the reviews we had the same problem as other cheaper tenderizers have. We tried to tenderize the meat thicker than half inch. The meat got stuck and was mushed or just didn’t go through. So if you want a good thick steak this machine will not work out for you, however tenderizing or cubing thinner meat like venison or chicken is great.
If you are on a budget or need to use the tenderizer just a couple times a month this is a great choice. If you want to process thicker cuts we do not recommend this product.
- Very cheap
- Good quality compared to price
- Easy to set up and store
- Can go through cuts of 0.5” thick or less
- One leg gives less support than other tenderizers
LEM 168SS Stainless Steel Vertical Meat Tenderizer
We wanted to add high quality option for stainless steel lovers in this list. LEM 168SS 21 pound stainless steel monster and is a little bigger than its counterparts being 21” x 13” x 10” dimensions. The machine has 26 stainless steel blades and a 4-5/8” chute.
It is easy to set up and start tenderizing, as other tenderizers or cubers put the meat once, then turn 90 degree angle and go through again to get perfect diamond shapes. So when you season it or marinate, the meat will absorb everything better and more thoroughly.
This meat tenderizer is easy to assemble and disassemble, easy to clean and really high quality. However, it comes with a really high price tag, it costs almost twice as much as the Weston tenderizer. So unless you are a stainless steel fanatic, this product price to quality ratio is off compared to other tenderizers.
- Easy to clean and assemble/disassemble
- All stainless steel
- Very sturdy
- High price
Jaccard Supertendermatic 48-Blade Tenderizer
In addition to meat tenderizer machines we wanted to add a handheld meat tenderizer, for those who can appreciate a good workout with their hand and want to tenderize the meat to their own standard for different cuts. Jaccard is the best handheld meat tenderizer on the market in 2017. As their manufacturer claims it is the #1 choice of professional Chefs around the world. This meat tenderizer has 48 double edged razor sharp knives to cut through even toughest connective tissues.
Jaccard Supertendermatic is made of ABS plastic and is 5-5/8” by 4-1/8” dimensions and weighs just 12 ounces!
This tool is very well engineered and really sturdy. We really like its ergonomic design – the handle bulges at the top for a comfortable and good grip. When you store this tool it has a protective cover.
Using Jaccard meat tenderizer is really easy and actually pretty safe if anyone is wondering. The sharp knives are exposed only when you press on the tool hard against the bottom plate with strings.
The device has pretty long work life and even when your blades get dull you can buy replacement ones for around $5.
After using the meat tenderizer we did spend a little more time cleaning it than other tenderizers. We did clean it by hand so small pieces of meat stuck on blades were a bit hard to get to, but washing it with dishwasher should do the trick.
Looking back, it is a great tool if you are not afraid to do some manual work and need to tenderize quickly a cut of meat. Being good quality and comfortable we definitely see this used in any kitchen, even commercial kitchens.
- Good quality
- No need to set up
- Takes very little space
- Cheap replacement blades
- Requires manual work
- A little difficult to clean
Why some meats are tougher than others?
So what exactly makes some cuts tough and some super tender? In short, muscles that work more are tougher, and the ones that don’t are more tender. So the muscles of four-legged animals on their bottom like legs, butts, shoulders and neck work really hard every day and are much tougher compared to belly, ribs or the meat at the center top side of the cow that are really tender.
The tough muscles have a lot of collagen that holds the muscles together and connects to the bones. Collagen is the reason why cuts are tough to chew and require longer times to cook or in our case to use our picked best meat tenderizers. Check out the video below about tough and tender cuts by Chefsteps.