Can You Grind Meat After It’s Cooked?

May 12, 2023

As you know, meat can be used in various forms, and nowadays, the shredded or ground form is very popular among meat lovers. The variety of dishes that you can make with ground meat is just incredible. However, there is a common problem most people face every day, which is “can you grind meat after it’s cooked.’’ I have every bit of detail that you need to get a better understanding of this topic inside this article. Let’s get started without further ado.

Why Should You Grind Your Own Cooked Meat?

If you think it is all about reusing leftovers, yes, it is valid to a certain extent, but that is not the primary goal of most. The main reason for grinding cooked meat is to produce more amazing foods.

Even restaurants cook the meat first and then grind to come up with mouthwatering dishes. As an example, most soup recipes demand cooked meat or fish in order to get the authentic taste and flavor of the recipe.

I’m not describing more than that as I have no idea why you are searching for answers to how to mince cooked meat. Having said that, I guarantee that you will learn the best way to grind meat (cooked) and everything in between from here onwards. Let’s dig deep.

Which Meat Types Can be Ground after Cooking?

If you are after tips on grinding meat, cooked, of course, the crucial thing is to know whether the meat you have in hand is compatible for the job. That said, there should not be an issue with most meat types that we use in our day-to-day lives. Beef, pork, chicken, and fish are some meats that fit ideally for the job.

Whatever the cooked meat you want to grind, first of all, make sure it is appropriately cooked as you don’t want to end up with needless health issues. In addition, it is utterly important to ensure the machine that you are using to grind cooked meat is 100% clean, as it is another significant reason for bacteria growth. 

In addition, note that the taste of ground meat will become slightly change after you take it out from the machine, simply because it is already cooked. So, it is essential to add some spices to it before you use the ground-cooked meat in a recipe

how to mince cooked meat

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Grinding Cooked Meat?

Usually, when I discuss something, I elaborate on both pros and cons so that readers can think independently to make a successful choice, and it’s the same with meat grinding. 

Pros Of Grinding Cooked Meat 

Let me walk you through the advantages of grinding cooked chicken or any other type of meat.

  • As I said, the primary reason why grind your own meat is that it allows you to try and test a variety of recipes. You should be able to find a bucketful of recipes if you take and minute to Google for them.
  • Grinding cooked meat is one of the best ways to reuse leftovers. If your thanksgiving ended with tons of leftovers, covert them to processed grinded meat!
  • For families that have kids who are not willing to chew meat, ground meat can be a good option as it makes it easy for the kids to chew and swallow meat. 
  • Store-brought meat won’t help you get the intended texture to fit with certain recipes. If you have a cooked meat grinder, you can receive the texture that you are desperately going after. 
  • Finally, grinding your cooked meat can save you a considerable amount of bucks as you can use meat in different forms, limiting the time you visit the butcher.

Cons of Grinding Meat

This is the flip side story of grinding cooked meat.

  • When it comes to the nutrients side of things, ground meat won’t be the ideal form to get the most out of meat nutrients. The meat grinding process tends to lose the available nutrients. So, if you are a health-conscious person, ground meat might not be the best option. 
  • As I explained earlier, the taste of cooked ground meat gets slightly low compared to the cooked version. It may not happen with all meat types, but the leaner meat sorts, in particular, will hamper due to this process. 
  • Although I have mentioned that you can get the intended texture, the meat will definitely become so soft after you grind it. So, keep that in mind when grinding cooked meat (I will explain later how to prevent this from happening).
  • The stress that cooked meat puts on the grinder is significant compared to raw meat. Grinding cooked meat has a correlation with the longevity of the machine. 
  • Cleaning the grinder also is challenging after you grind cooked meat; it takes more time for sure. 

How to Prepare Cooked Meat for Grinding?

As of now, you should understand that grinding cooked meat comes with the disadvantage of meat becoming soft. The cooked version of meat is already soft and grinding it means the end result inevitably becomes softer. That is why you should pay keen attention to the preparation of cooked meat. 

The first thing you have to ensure is that the meat that you want to grind is well-cooked before you do anything with it. The second step is to keep the meat in the freezer. Guys, this is an important step as giving sufficient chilling time for the meat is essential to keep the texture of the ground meat. 

Finally, I recommend you use the coarse grinding plate for the grinding process. The texture that coarse plate provides is beneficial to limit the meat from becoming softer. In addition, it helps the visibility of other ingredients such as chilis and herbs. 

grinding cooked meat

Steps To Grind Your Cooked Meat

Ok, then. This is how I grind cooked meat at home. I will keep everything simple and straightforward via a step-by-step guide. I hope this guide will help you accomplish the process without much problem.

1st Step

The first step is to prepare your grinder. An electric meat grinder would be tailor-made for the job as it helps minimize the guesswork as well as manual stuff. Make sure there is no dirt or leftovers in the machine.

2nd Step

Secondly, you have to prepare the meat. As I previously said, the meat should be kept in the freezer before you grind. However, don’t let the meat become too frozen, as it will make the grinding process a hassle. In addition, it will impact the machine’s inner parts, which is you don’t want to let happen, I guess.

You may be amazed to read that I freeze my grinder as well. Yes, keeping everything chilled will help you get ground meat without losing its texture much. These two tips are pivotal, guys. So, don’t be too concerned about the time you put in, as the results are totally worth the effort.

3rd Step

Then, cut the cooked meat into small cubes. The size of the cubes must not be too small or too big. All you have to do is make sure your machine eats the meat without a problem. 

4th Step

Now, insert the meat into the grinder and grind using the coarse grinding plate. Do not overload the grinder; just insert a sufficient amount of meat into the grinder at once. Once it completes the grinding put more meat and grind. 

Here, I keep a chilled bowl to collect the ground meat underneath the grinder. Again, the purpose of this step is to prevent the meat from catching whatever the heat there is. 

5th Step

Once you complete the grinding process, clean the grinder thoroughly; do not leave anything in the plates or any part of the grinder as it will encourage bacteria growth. 

Does Meat Have To Be Cold To Grind?

Yes, of course. As I repeatedly said, the cooked meat must be chilled enough before you put it in the grinder. The reason is after you cook the meat, it becomes soft compared to the raw state. When you use cooked meat to grind without freezing it, the end product will become softer, making it inappropriate for most of the well-known recipes. 

In addition, frozen meat minimizes the stress on the grinder as well. Moreover, if the situation permits, please freeze your meat grinder as well. I hope now you can understand the importance of keeping everything cold when grinding cooked meat. 


So, guys, I’m pretty much confident that you now know how to grind cooked meat. The fate or the quality of ground cooked meat depends largely on how you prepare the meat before you cook. Simply put, freeze the meat for at least one hour and cut them into a maximum of 2-inch size cubes to make it easy for the grinder’s feeding tube to swallow. If you do these few things, it won’t be difficult to get your desired result. Let me know if you need further assistance in this regard. Have a great day, guys!

1 Comment
  1. Thanks for sharing

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