Meat Processing Equipment 102 - Sausage Stuffers
Meat Processing Equipment 102 Sausage Stuffers
Attend this entry level class from Meatgistics University by watching the video, reading the article and post any questions you have!
What Are The Main Functions?
Sausage stuffers are the best way to take a ground product and get into a casing or meat bag. They can be vertical or horizontal, hand crank, electric, hydraulic or vacuum powered. The Walton’s Sausage Stuffers are vertically orientated and come in 7, 11, 26 and 33 lb models.
How Do They Work?
These stuffers have two gears, one on the bottom that is designed for stuffing and one above that can only be used to quickly reverse your piston out of the cannister. The canister is secured to the frame by 4 brackets, 2 on each side. The bottom bracket supports the canister during stuffing from vertical pressure where the top bracket locks it in. Your ground and seasoned meat is loaded into the canister by tilting the canister backward, once it has been filled it needs to be locked back in place. Attach the hand crank to the lower of the two gears on the side and begin cranking. As you crank the gears will turn in the gearbox, forcing the rack down and pushing the piston down through the canister. This will force your meat down and out the stuffing tube at the bottom and into your casing or meat bag.
How Important is it?
A Stuffer is an important piece of equipment for any home processor. Stuffers make it easy to get near perfectly filled casings nearly everytime. They also allow you to use much smaller casings than you would be able to if you were trying to stuff off of a grinder.
Most Meat Grinders have some stuffing capability and they certainly can be used for stuffing sausage. However, it will be much slower than if you used an actual sausage stuffer and you generally cannot stuff small diameter products like snack sticks off of a Meat Grinder.
Should You Buy One
If someone is looking to make their own homemade fresh sausage a sausage stuffer might be the first thing I would recommend. You can purchase already ground meat, mix in the seasoning and stuff them into casings and you are done. If you are making cured products you will probably need a few other pieces of equipment but a stuffer is, in my mind, still a very important piece of equipment. If deciding between a Stuffer and a Meat Grinder for you,r first purchase it will come down to the question of how you are obtaining your meat. For a hunter, I would absolutely recommend you buy a grinder first but to make a really quality product you are going to eventually want a sausage stuffer.
Best Choice For Beginners
7 lb or the 11 lb Sausage Stuffer are my two favorite models for small batches, which is what you will probably do at the beginning. The reason for this is that the piston on both of these models have a smaller diameter, which means that it requires less force to crank down the handle.
The size of your stuffing tube and casing will play a large part in how much effort it takes to turn your crank. The larger the tube the easier it will crank as there will be less resistance, the fat content, water content and other factors of your product can also play a large part as well.
Walton’s Sausage Stuffers are made from stainless steel and zinc coated aluminum. They come with 4 different sized stainless steel stuffing tubes, a 12mm, 16mm, 22mm, 38mm, and a 10mm is also available for purchase for stuffing very small snack sticks. Just remember that the smaller the tube the more force that will be required to crank the handle.
revid last edited by
@jonathon do you have or know where to buy motors for vertical stuffers?
@revid The only thing we offer motorized on vertical sausage stuffers is the Walton’s 26 lb Electric Stuffer. This is a self-contained unit though, and is not an option to add to other vertical stuffers.
I do plan on trying to add an external motor to our existing line of sausage stuffers in the next year, 2019 (no promises, but I hope to make things work), but currently, we do not have another option.
revid last edited by
@austin sounds good keep us posted if you do come up with one. The small 3/8 tubes are brutal to stuff through.
@Joepingel That would be correct, the 22mm tube is too big for the 30mm casing, it will fit the 32mm collagen but not the 30. You can check out a chart that shows you what tube to use with what casings (https://meatgistics.waltonsinc.com/topic/187/what-size-stuffing-tube-to-use-sausage-casing-size-chart) that Austin made a few years ago. Please let me know if you saw incorrect information somewhere on either meatgistics.com or waltonsinc.com and I will get that fixed.
Thanks Jonathon. I pan fried the sausage in a cast iron skillet (my “go to” for the stove) on low heat actually. I could not believe there was no moisture in that skillet. The sausage really was great (Holly), beautifully brown. I was very surprised at no rendered fat, but it is very pleasant to experience a sausage patty that is not greasy. I thought I did something wrong lol.
Yeah, goat is lean. I will be going the route of adding pork fat, or mixing in some ground pork. I will have to read up on the other options you have suggested as they are new to me. I like to keep my food as “natural” as possible. I do appreciate the assist here.
@homesteader57 When making a fresh sausage like breakfast sausage adding water isn’t necessary and you’d only need to do it to help mix in the seasonings and additives. I personally don’t add water to breakfast sausage or bratwursts. Did you stuff this into a casing or did you make loose breakfast sausage and cook it up in a pan? Either way, I’ve never heard of no fat rendering out when cooking a breakfast sausage, can you give me a little more information on how you cooked it? In a pan over high heat I am assuming, was it cooked at the highest heat? Cast Iron or something else?
I am going to be very interested to see what happens when you make Brats out of the goats. I’ve never done it but I am pretty sure goat is low in fat content. For brats you want your fat content to be around 75/25 so you will have to add some pork fat if you can. If you don’t want to add pork fat then you can try what I have been doing with lower fat meats. When I have made Chicken Brats I have been using Cold Phosphate to increase the water holding capacity of the meat. I’d also recommend you use a binder like Sure Gel or Super Bind or a moisture retender like Carrot Fiber. Using both of those seems to be the best bet to get a nice juicy product out of a lower fat meat.
@scott-williams First, I’d recommend you use a binder like Sure Gel or Super Bind or a moisture retender like Carrot Fiber. This is always the first thing I recommend when someone has an issue with the texture of their sausage.
Your fat content is correct and it sounds like you used the correct amount of seasoning. 190° is a little higher than I would recommend, but we have all been there when it’s just taking too long so you dump it a little more than you really should! I don’t think that is the issue but check out this post titled Summer Sausage Nightmare specifically @Parksider’s response to finishing it up in water. It’s a good tip and I am going to be doing some tests on it here to verify a few things.
What I think probably caused your issue was the mixing in some way. When adding pork fat to your venison I think the best time to add it is during the second grind, it’s possible that your fat didn’t really mix in well with the venison, that would explain why it seemed dry even though you had the correct fat content.
It also could have been lack of protein extraction, I looked through your posts and can’t tell if you have a mixer or are mixing by hand? With cured sausages, I always recommend using a meat mixer as getting the right level of protein extraction. I am guessing that you had some fat out where the fat renders and cooks out of the product.
Hope this helps!
I made my first batch of brats last night and was using the 30mm collagen casing, but I could not get it to fit on the 22mm tube. I used instead the 16mm tube. I am just curious about what I was doing wrong. I have the 11lb vertical stuffer.
@papasop Sorry, I didn’t catch that you said by the switch initially.
I see the same thing now. Weird thing is that the Pro Series also says the same thing. If you couldn’t use any of them for more than 5 seconds in reverse, that would be odd, because then nothing would work well with the meat mixers.
I’m getting some questions sent to the manufacturer. I’ll let you know if they can clarify further.
I’ve used both the Pro and Butcher series grinders with the reverse on for more than 5 seconds, and used them to mix a lot of meat, so my initial thought is that it is fine to do on mixing, but maybe just not when the grinder head, auger, plate/knife, etc. is attached. Meat is the “lubricant” for all that when grinding, so in reverse for too long and the meat not being pushed through everything could cause problems.