Best manual meat slicer
1. Globe Meat Slicer
Globe G12 Slicer is a powerful commercial-grade unit made of stainless steel and anodized aluminum with a hard-chromed exterior and some PVC components.
It features a ½ hp motor that comes with protection from thermal overload with a manual reset switch. The “12” in the name of the slicer stands for the 12-inch blade made of stainless steel with a hollow grind for better slicing performance.
The food chute is angled at 35° and can accommodate food products measuring up to 10 x 8.25 x 10.25 inches. The ergonomic dual-purpose handle is extended for additional security.
The slicer provides users with 15 different thickness setting, ranging from 0 to 0.6 inches. The motor and other electrical components are encased at the bottom of the base, which also features a no-volt release power switch and 4 non-slip feet. Globe G12 Slicer measures 17 x 22.25 x 19.25 (HWD) and weighs around 50 pounds.
|Dimensions||26.5" x 23.5" x 21"|
|Slicing Tickness Range||0 to 0.6"|
Best for high-volume slicing
2. Berkel Meat Slicer
Berkel 827A is a reliable manual meat slicer made of stainless steel and anodized aluminum with an assortment of PVC components. It boasts a daily runtime of 4-5 hours, it is suitable for soft and hard meat and produce as well as harder cheese and bread, and it comes with a handy built-in 2-stone sharpener.
The motor has ½ hp and the 12-inch blade is made of hardened and highly polished chrome-plated carbon steel, which makes it extremely resistant to any types of abrasions, regular wear & tear, and rust.
The food chute is angled at 45° and the ergonomic handle makes slicing tasks much easier and more comfortable. The chute can accommodate loaves measuring up to 7.6 x 10.75 inches. The thickness of individual slices ranges from 0 to 0.56 inches. Berkel 827A Manual Meat Slicer measures 21.25 x 24 x 21.5 inches (HWD) and weighs 74 pounds.
|Dimensions||24" x 21.5" x 21.2"|
|Slicing Tickness Range||0 to 0.6"|
Best advanced model
3. Hobart Meat Slicer
Hobart Edge 12 is a meat slicer primarily designed for mid-tier commercial-grade slicing tasks. It is made of anodized aluminum with some PVC components.
The motor has ½ hp and drives the blade with an implemented poly V-belt for a longer lifespan and quieter operation. The 12-inch blade is made of chrome-plated forged carbon steel, so it is resistant to structural damage, abrasions, and rust.
The food chute is angled at 45° and can accommodate loaves measuring up to 10 x 8 inches. The ergonomic PVP non-slip handle makes slicing more comfortable and secure.
The thickness dial provides 15 different settings going up to 0.6 inches. The motor and other electrical components are encased at the bottom of the base that also features a no-volt release switch and 4 non-slip feet for maximum stability. Hobart Edge 12 measures 21.9 x 26.3 x 23.1 inches (HWD) and weighs around 80 pounds.
|Dimensions||32" x 26" x 28"|
|Slicing Tickness Range||0 to 0.6"|
Best for biltong
4. Tekut Biltong Slicer
Tekut Biltong Slicer is the bamboo version of Tekut’s Classic Tekut Biltong Slicer. As the name of the unit suggests, it is primarily designed to slice biltong, but it can also handle other food products, ranging from cheese to fruits and vegetables.
The base of the unit is made of 100% organic bamboo without any fertilizers or pesticides. The 14.5-inch blade is made of FDA and LFBG approved stainless steel and it can be detached from the base of the appliance for some individual slicing.
The base also houses a tungsten-carbide sharpener, which can be used for sharpening your bladed kitchen utensils as well. It features a compact spanner used to remove the blade for cleaning or individual use.Tekut Biltong Slicer measures 3.9 x 8.7 x 7.1 inches (HWD) and weighs around 2 lb. The bottom of the base features 4 non-slip feet for optimal stability during operation.
|Dimensions||8.7" x 7.1" x 3.9"|
|Slicing Tickness Range||?|
Best for frozen foods
5. Frozen Meat Slicer
Frozen Meat Slicer is a durable and sturdy appliance made entirely of stainless steel, which makes it extra resistant to abrasions, rust, and general wear and tear. The comfortable ergonomic handle is made of heavy-duty PVC.
The replaceable stainless steel blade is 6.7 inches long and can slice any type of boneless frozen meat and hard fruits and vegetables. Unfortunately, the meat slicer does not perform well with fresh meat and cheese. The thickness of the slices is regulated with a knob that changes the distance between the blade and the dam-board and ranges from 0.007 to 1 inch.
Frozen Meat Slicer also comes with a stable V-shaped loading table, food fixator with 10 spikes and a comfortable U-handle, hexagonal wrench, blade grinder, and 10 bags for rolling meat. The unit measures 4.7 x 18.1 x 6.3 inches (HWD) and weighs around 5 pounds.
|Dimensions||18.1" x 6.3" x 4.7"|
|Slicing Tickness Range||0.007" to 1"|
Why Get A Manual Meat Slicer
A manual meat slicer allows you to segment any cut of meat into perfect and consistent slivers without spending several thousands of dollars on a heavy-duty commercial-grade machine. It is ideal for mid-tier tasks in smaller butcher shops, restaurants, and delis but can also be a powerful addition to your home kitchen arsenal. A manual meat slicer enables you to produce slices as thin as 0.01 inches, which is something you can never do with a regular knife.
These units are time-saving appliances as well. Namely, mechanical units can dish out up to 60 slices per minute. Needless to say, these results are impossible to achieve with a knife.
Manual meat slicers can also be used to slice fruits and vegetables without turning them into mush. Mechanical units are primarily designed to slice frozen foods and hard fruits and vegetables while their electric counterparts can deal with fresh/cooked meat, salamis, and other soft food products as well.
Manual meat slicers are usually made of stainless steel and anodized aluminum, which provides you with optimal food hygiene since neither of those materials is a fertile ground for bacteria growth. Their constructions are smooth and seamless, so there is no danger of any food particles or excess juices hiding away in crevices, unrefined welds, and other hard-to-reach places. With that in mind, manual meat slicers listed in this guide are extremely easy to clean and minimize the mess that usually follows this type of food processing, especially if you are slicing softer fruits and vegetables.
Anything that involves razor-sharp blades is a pretty dangerous operation without previous experience and expertise. Having said that, the best manual meat slicers implement a wide variety of safety measures designed to keep your hands away from the blade at all times and minimize the risk of potential injury. Mechanical slicers also come with reliable V-shaped loading tables and food fixators for optimal security during operation.
How Manual Meat Slicers Work
When talking about manual meat slicers, we have to make a clear distinction between electric and mechanical units. They are both hand-operated, but the difference lies in the blade-powering mechanism and the overall design and construction of the appliances.
Electric models feature a motor (usually ½ hp) that rotates the blade using a belt for motion transfer. The food item is loaded into a dedicated chute that is usually angled at 35 or 45°, allowing gravity to do some of the work for you. The chute slides back and forth on permanently lubricated ball bearings and forces the food product into the blade. The blades range in diameter, but they usually hover around 12-13 inches and are made of (carbon) steel, sometimes with a hollow grind for better slicing performance.
All of the units come with a removable grinding stone that allows you to resharpen the blade in a single passing (takes about 15 seconds). The base is always made of stainless steel or anodized aluminum with dedicated splash covers and other mechanisms that protect the motor from damage due to contact with excess juices and other liquids. The finish is always smooth and seamless, which makes them very easy to clean and sanitize before and after each use.
Mechanical models, on the other hand, feature the so-called “lever design” that allows you to apply a significant downward force and slice much harder food items without any difficulties. There is a trade-off, however, since the blades are not as sharp as with electric models and they are not able to provide you with such refined cuts. Mechanical units do not feature any electrical components, which makes them much cheaper and more durable. They are also predominantly made of stainless steel and usually come with replaceable 6.7-inch stainless steel blades.
Electric slicers are designed to handle softer food products, including unfrozen meat, cheese, and soft fruits and vegetables. Mechanicals models, on the other hand, can slice only frozen food and harder fruits and vegetable while providing subpar results with fresh/cooked meat and cheese. Neither of the two types can deal with bones, however, and trying to slice them will most definitely damage the blade beyond repair.
Buyer’s Guide: Choosing The Best Manual Meat Slicer
As we already mentioned in this guide to the best manual meat slicers, there are two types of units on the market and the best option for you depends on your needs and preferences. If you mostly slice softer, unfrozen meats and cheese, you should go with an electric unit. On the other hand, if you need a tool to slice frozen foods and harder fruits and vegetables, mechanical models are the best choice for you.
The best manual meat slicers are made of stainless steel or anodized aluminum or the combination of those two materials. Ideally, the knife should be made of carbon steel but stainless steel works just fine as well. All the knobs, handles, and gripping rods should be made of heavy-duty non-slip PVC for optimal comfort and safety.
There are several brackets every decent meat slicer needs to check when it comes to construction quality. First of all, it needs to have a smooth and seamless finish without any crevices or unrefined welds where food particles and germs could hide. This also makes the cleaning and maintenance processes much quicker and easier.
As already stated, meat slicers are inherently dangerous machines if not handled properly. Mechanical units need to have a reliable loading bracket, a secure food fixator, and an ergonomic non-slip handle, which allows you to easily apply force. Manual meat slicers usually come with suction cups for stabilization.
Performance & Versatility
The best manual meat slicers should provide you with perfect consistency with every single slice. Apart from consistency, they should be versatile, meaning you should be able to slice various products using your slicer, including a wide variety of (frozen) meats, fruits & vegetables, cheese, and other food items.
The materials used to build a slicer dictate the potential difficulties you will encounter during routine cleaning and maintenance. The best manual meat slicers are usually made of stainless steel and anodized aluminum with some PVC components, which makes them extremely easy to clean and sanitize with water and some mild detergent. As manual meat slicers feature a smooth finish without any hard-to-reach crevices, you do not have to worry about missing a spot and encouraging rampant bacteria growth.
Mechanical units tend to be much cheaper than their electric counterparts since they do not feature any motors, complicated transmissions, and other electrical components, so 50-70 dollars is usually the right price for a manual model.