Making Ground Beef

Today was day 2 of butchering the cow. Day 2 consisted of us deboning the meat and cutting it into medium size pieces so that we could put it in the meat grinder to make ground beef.
Beef before it is deboned and cut into pieces.
After beef is deboned and cut into pieces.
You have to leave a bit of fat on the meat or the ground meat would be too lean and you would have to add cooking oil to the pan for it to cook properly. We keep our ground beef fairly lean. I believe the ratio is about 90% beef and 10% fat.

The 3/4 HP Meat Grinder

We use a 3/4 HP meat grinder. My husband feels that if he could repurchase a meat grinder, he would buy a 1 and 1/2 HP grinder. The larger horse power meat grinder would be able to grind the meat in less time. We use this grinder to make ground beef and pork sausage.

We place the pieces of meat in the grinder and a plastic ground beef sleeve at the end and start filling the bags to our desired amount that we want in each bag. We then take the air out of each bag by ensuring that the ground beef fills out the bag and squeezing out air that accidently gets trapped into the bag, twist the top of the bag and close the bag with wrapping meat packaging tape. Lastly, we wipe the bags down to ensure that they are clean and place in the freezer.

Packaging the Ground Beef


The Finished Beef Product


Also on day 2 we make beef stew meat. To make this we cut meat that does not have fat on it into small rectangular pieces. I then simply place this cubed meat in a Ziploc bag or a vacuumed sealed bag, label with date and contents, and place in the freezer.

Beef Stew Meat

Day 2 took us about five hours from start to finish. This time includes preparing the butcher shop, cleaning and sanitizing work surfaces, knives and other equipment, along with cleaning after the process. We estimated that the cow we butchered weighed 900 pounds live weight. The actual packaged beef that went into the freezer weighed 386 pounds.


We have all the beef to feed our family for the year stored in our freezers. Nothing tastes as good as eating your own beef that you raised yourself. You know that you are eating meat that came from a healthy cow who was grass fed and was not injected with growth hormones. The beef is processed in a sanitary environment and cut to your own specifications. You can rest assure you are giving your family the healthiest possible food. Also, you are becoming more self sufficient and providing for the needs of your family.

Freezer #1

Freezer #2

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