Making snack sticks for the first time.


  • I’ve made two small batches of fresh sausage but now I have a smoker. So, I want to try a small batch of snack sticks.

    We have a very tasty bacon I’d like to incorporate. I don’t have access to venison.

    I’m thinking of making the snack sticks with 2 pounds picnic pork, 2 pounds of beef, and 1 pound of bacon.

    I’m not sure what cut off beef to use.

    I don’t have a meat mixer which I’m reading helps with protein extraction for smoking.

    For this small batch, do people think I could use my Kitchen Aid stand mixer or do it by hand?

  • Team Blue PK100 Power User

    ADKGuy You certainly can! We started by hand mixing or the paddle in the Kitchen aid would be great. Just make sure you get good protein extraction-very sticky. I think I’d do 2#of beef and 2# total of pork. We do 50/50 mix. As for the beef I’d buy whatever is on sale. If you find a deal on ground that just saves you a step. There is no wrong answer, I just don’t believe in spending a lot of $$ on beef you’ll be grinding into a stick. We expect pics of a successful run!


  • Parksider thanks. So you’re saying 1 pound of pork and 1# of the bacon to 2# pounds of beef?

    I’ve got some Weston’s dill snack stick seasoning coming.

  • Team Blue

    I have done test batches of sticks in my wife’s stand mixer successfully. It sometimes takes more than the standard 8-10 to get protein extraction but it worked.

  • Power User

    ADKGuy if your bacon has been cured already im not sure if you can grind and put that in sticks now. So to me that means 2.5 lbs of picnic and 2.5 lbs of ground beef for a 5lb batch

  • Team Orange

    To add to this question, what fat ratio would you recommend for the beef? 80/20 or 70/30? I have made a bunch of sticks with venison and did 50% pork shoulder and 50% venison but I have additional seasoning to use up so I would like to make more with pork and beef.

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    twilliams He can grind it an add it BUT it won’t smoothly incorporate into the rest of the snack stick because it has already been partially cooked. It should still work. ADKGuy I agree with Parksider 1-1-1 beef pork bacon is going to end up being very fatty. I would 2 beef, 2 pork and 1 bacon, especially since the bacon won’t totally mix with the rest of the meat.


  • Jonathon said in Making snack sticks for the first time.:

    twilliams He can grind it an add it BUT it won’t smoothly incorporate into the rest of the snack stick because it has already been partially cooked. It should still work. ADKGuy I agree with Parksider 1-1-1 beef pork bacon is going to end up being very fatty. I would 2 beef, 2 pork and 1 bacon, especially since the bacon won’t totally mix with the rest of the meat.

    Thanks! Any particular cut of beef you’d recommend for this mix. I’m not set on using the bacon. I just thought it would add a nice flavor. It’s the best bacon I’ve tasted (haven’t made my own yet). It’s from a Mennonite store. It’s called JM Martins and Sons Double Smoked bacon.

    I can leave it out all together and just do pork and beef since it’s my first time I don’t want to over complicate it.

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    ADKGuy I would recommend keeping it simple the first time at least. Getting the basics down and then going from there is usually the best thing to do. For Pork I would use a Pork Butt or Shoulder, they have the right fat content and for beef I would use chuck or trim if you can get it as they are a little higher in fat for less money but really, as long as you get an overall amount of 20% fat you should be good!


  • Jonathon I have picnic pork. Will that work? What’s trim? I’m not familiar with meat cuts and it seems different places call the same cut different names.

    Thanks.

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    ADKGuy Yup picnic will work. Trim is what is left over when the butcher is cutting to primal and from primals to subprimals. It is perfect for making sausage of all kinds but isn’t readily available.

  • Team Blue

    Jonathon For what it’s worth the “Trim” I can get locally has a lot of actual meat in it. I would say best case it’s 50-50 meat and fat. Not sure if that’s common, but it forces some guesstimating on actual fat I am adding.

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    Brianh I think that is pretty standard, we were lucky enugh to go visit Diller Locker in Diller Nebraksa last week and watch them do some butchering. They took a 1/2 cow and had it in primals within 15 minutes, it was pretty awesome and I am guessing the trim looked around that. Not sure if it is the same on hogs but I’d think that it was.

  • Team Blue

    Jonathon Interestingly, the “Beef Trim” I get from the same butcher shop is 100% fat! to be fair, I’ve only bought the beef trim once and the pork trim three times so not a great sample size.

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    Brianh What was your pork trim like? It is possible I was wrong on the beef trim but it definitely did not look way over 50% fat. Going to the locker plant was the coolest thing I have gotten to do in a long time! They had a ton of halves of cow but the best was the bison half, you could see the hump up near the neck and the meat is a totally different color, it was awesome!

  • Team Blue

    Jonathon The pork trim was around 50% meat/50% fat. I bought it three different times and it was pretty consistent that way.

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