Large feed tube
Grinds meat quickly
Doesn’t come with cleaning tools
Somewhat cheap-looking white plastic finish
We purchased the Sunmile SM-G50 Electric Meat Grinder so our reviewer could put it to the test in her kitchen. Keep reading for our full product review.
If you’re venturing into the world of grinding your own meat or making your own dog food, the first thing you need is a high-quality meat grinder. It has to be powerful enough to quickly handle large quantities of meat with minimal clogging and jamming—all things that the Sunmile SM-G50 Electric Meat Grinder promises to do. But while there are many grinders out there that claim to make meat processing a breeze, lots of them under-deliver, and are really noisy, too. To see how the Sunmile grinder fared, I put it to the test grinding up chuck roast and chicken thighs. Read on to see how it handled the job.
Setup Process: Minimal setup required
The grinder arrives in three separate pieces. Before I started, I had to attach the grinding head to the base and then place the tray on top. The cutting blade and the medium grinding plate were already secured inside the grinding head, but if you want to switch the grinding plate, you can do so by unscrewing the cap at the end and swapping it out—a process that takes about 30 seconds.
While it was easy enough to set up the grinder, the directions about how to do it weren’t totally clear. It’s pretty intuitive, and I figured it out myself, but it would have been nice to have some more detailed instructions so I had more confidence in what I was doing.
Design: Optimized for function
The Sunmile Electric Meat Grinder is designed for function. It’s built with large metal gears inside a metal gearbox and a #12 detachable aluminum tube. The tube is just over 2 inches wide, which is fairly large compared to other home units. This means you don’t have to chop the meat as small before feeding it into the machine, something that saves you a lot of time when you’re working with larger quantities of meat. When grinding a chuck roast, I cut it into 1-inch steaks, and they fit in the chute with plenty of room to spare.
The Sunmile also has a large-capacity tray that allows you to hold and grind a generous amount of meat at one time, so you can pile it up for easier feeding into the chute. The metal gearbox is attached to a rectangular-shaped plastic body that sits on top of four feet that prevents the grinder from sliding on the countertop as you work with it.
You don’t have to chop the meat as small before feeding it into the machine, something that saves you a lot of time when you’re working with larger quantities of meat.
On the back of the machine, there’s a storage compartment that houses the cord when it’s not in use. You can also tuck away the attachments and accessories inside this storage compartment, which was probably my favorite part of the design. In my opinion, it’s these little touches that make certain kitchen appliances stand out above others. When you’re done grinding, you can clean and neatly store everything away, so you always know where it is and don’t have to go searching for it next time you need it.
The only thing I didn’t like about the design was the white plastic housing and the square buttons. I think it cheapened the look a little bit and would have preferred a stainless steel finish to blend in with the rest of my kitchen appliances better. But this a minor gripe considering how well the machine performed.
Features and Attachments: Everything you need
The Sunmile Electric Meat Grinder isn’t especially feature-rich, but it has everything you need to quickly grind all types of meat (and bones if you’re making dog food). It has a high-power, 350-watt motor that can handle up to 200 pounds of meat per hour and three simple switches: on, off/reverse, and a circuit breaker reset that helps protect it from overheating during big jobs.
It comes with one cutting blade, three grinding plates (for coarse, medium, and fine grinds), a plastic pusher, and a sausage stuffer attachment.
Performance: An absolute workhorse
The most impressive thing about the Sunmile Electric Meat Grinder is its performance. The manufacturer says that it can grind up to 200 pounds of meat per hour, and while I didn’t have the quantity to test that claim, it did get through 2.5 pounds of fatty chuck roast in about a minute without clogging using the medium grinding plate.
I cut the silver skin off the meat but left the fat on, and the machine never had a problem. I didn’t do much prep either. I left the meat in fairly large chunks, about 1-inch steaks, rather than cutting it into cubes. Even so, it didn’t clog or jam, and the meat came out evenly ground and with the proper texture. For the chicken thighs, I swapped out the medium grinding plate for the fine grinding plate. It did slow things down a little bit, but not significantly. Two pounds of chicken was ground and ready to go in just over a minute.
A major complaint surrounding many meat grinders is the noise, but this one is relatively quiet. While you can hear the gears moving, it’s not obnoxiously loud, and I was able to hold a regular conversation during the process without having to raise my voice. This was true even when the Sunmile was actively grinding meat. I imagine the volume might be considerably louder if you need to grind bones with the meat, but that’s to be expected with any meat grinder.
Cleaning: Could use a cleaning brush
To clean the machine, I removed the grinding head from the machine and then took it apart, removing the grinding plate and the blade. I washed everything by hand, and it was simple enough.
The only difficult parts of the cleaning process were cleaning out the inside of the grinder head and getting the meat out of the holes in the grinding plate. The inside of the grinder head is pretty narrow, so it was difficult to get my hand all the way down with my sponge to clean out all of the meat. And it has an L-shape design, so getting the sponge around the corner proved to be a challenge too.
With the medium grinding plate, it got through 2.5 pounds of fatty chuck roast in about a minute without clogging.
Eventually, I pulled out a cleaning brush that came with my juicer and was able to clean everything, but it would have been nice if the grinder included some specialized cleaning tools or brushes. Meat also stayed stuck in the grinding plates, especially the medium and fine plates. I had to use a toothpick to push the meat out of the holes and then soak it in soap and water for a couple of hours to get it fully clean.
For the record, you should only clean the grinder head by hand, but you can throw the stainless cutting blade and grinding plates into the dishwasher.
Maintenance: Minimal, but necessary
Like anything with blades, the Sunmile Electric Meat Grinder will need some maintenance over the course of its life. While I haven’t had the machine long enough to speak to its longevity, many users say that it’s still going strong after several years with minimal maintenance. To increase its life, you do need to make sure you clean it well after each use, store it properly (away from moisture), and are sharpening the blades when necessary.
The only difficult parts of the cleaning process were cleaning out the inside of the grinder head and getting the meat out of the holes in the grinding plate.
There’s no hard rule about how often you need to sharpen the blades—it really depends on how much you use the machine and what you’re grinding—but many recommend getting the blade professionally sharpened once a year for best results.
Price: On the higher side
The price of meat grinders runs the gamut from under $100 to well over $500 for commercial-duty machines. This Sunmile Electric Meat Grinder is one of the higher-end home options available, and the price reflects that. At around $200, it’s more expensive than similar machines in its class, but it also does the job faster and comes with three cutting blades instead of two like most others.
Competition: No need to look elsewhere
If you need an everyday (or regular-use) meat grinder, there’s really no need to look further than the Sunmile, but if you have different user needs, there are some other options out there.
Cuisinart Electric Meat Grinder: If your meat grinding needs are a little smaller, the Cuisinart Electric Meat Grinder is a more compact option. It has two different cutting blades (medium and coarse) and a 300-watt motor that can grind up to 3 pounds of meat per minute. It also has a pusher and a reverse function to help release clogged foods from the chute. It retails for around $100.
LEM Products #12 Big Bite Meat Grinder 0.75 HP: On the other hand, if you grind a lot of meat, the LEM Products #12 Big Bite Meat Grinder 0.75 HP is a workhorse in the kitchen. It has a 550-watt motor that stays permanently lubricated and can handle up to 11 pounds of meat per minute. It also has a stainless steel head and comes with a meat stomper, stainless steel knife, three stuffing tubes, a stainless steel stuffing plate, and two stainless steel cutting blades (coarse and fine). It retails for around $480.
A good home-use machine.
If you’re in the market for a reliable meat grinder, there’s really no need to look elsewhere. With its 350-watt motor and ability to grind 200 pounds of meat per hour, the Sunmile SM-G50 Electric Meat Grinder is quick, powerful, and relatively quiet.
- Product Name Electric Meat Grinder
- Product Brand Sunmile
- Price $200
- Weight 13.64 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 11 x 15.1 x 12.2 in.
- What's Included 1 stainless steel cutting blade, 3 various stainless steel grinding plates, 1 plastic food pusher, 1 sausage maker attachment