If you're tired of rising food costs and not knowing what is in your hamburger, then you need a meat grinder.

I've owned a meat grinder for about three years now, and it is, without a doubt, one of the best purchases I've ever made. Over the last three years, I've grinded my own burgers, chicken patties, and breakfast sausage. Most recently, I started casing my own brats, which has been a total game changer. Not only am I saving tons of money, but I also know exactly what is going into my food.

Processing meat at home has never been easier, and honestly, it doesn't take an enormous amount of time. All Things Barbecue notes that equipment that was once only available for commercial use has now been reduced in size, ensuring an easy fit in your home kitchen. Mine takes up very little space, is easy to clean, and is easy to maintain. Here are five reasons, according to All Things Barbecue, why you should buy a meat grinder.

1. Freshness

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Everyone wants their meat to be fresh. If you don't, then you're just plain wrong. When you grind your own beef, pork, chicken, or turkey, you have complete control over the sourcing and handling of your ingredients. You can buy whole cuts from most grocery stores, but a visit to your local butcher is the best idea. Additionally, when you grind your own meat, you can bypass the additives that are often found in pre-packed ground meat.

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2. Customization

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One of the things I like most about buying whole cuts is customization. If you buy a whole beef rib roast, you can cut your ribeye steaks as thick or thin as you want. When it comes to sausage and burgers, you can do the same with the size of your patties and links. Plus, you can add other things you might like, such as jalapenos or cheddar cheese, to the meat mix.

Pro tip: If you plan to make your own burgers or sausage patties, you'll want a patty press. Something like this will work just fine.

3. Variety

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In addition to customization, having a meat grinder will also allow you to purchase a variety of meats you might not even think about while at the store. For example, you may not want to cook a whole brisket, but if it's on sale for $2.99/lb, you can grind it into hamburgers for other things. In fact, when I cook a whole brisket, anything I trim off isn't thrown away. Rather, I use all those trimmings to make sausage or burgers down the line.

4. Food Safety:

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Nobody wants a food-related illness. Food safety is top of mind for many folks these days, as it should be. When you process meat at home, you get a little extra peace of mind when it comes to food safety. You not only reduce the risk of contamination, but you also have full control over the temperature of your environment, equipment, and ingredients.

5. Save Money

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Of course, one of the best reasons to buy a meat grinder, as stated earlier, is to save money. While you'll have to shell out a little bit of cash in the short term for the grinder itself, you'll recoup that and more in what you save by buying whole cuts in bulk. Whole cuts are wildly cheaper than precut or preground meat. If you're worried about the price of a meat grinder, don't be. Small electric models are very affordable, like this one on Amazon. I've had the exact same model for three years and have run hundreds of pounds of meat through it without issue.

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