Buying a Meat Slicer on a Budget
Slicing your own meats at home sounds like the ultimate luxury, doesn’t it? No more troublesome trips to the deli, and much more freedom in the the types of foods you eat. It might also seem like a luxury that’s just out of your budget. But if you follow the tips in this helpful guide, you can find the meat slicer of your dreams at a price that’s much more realistic.
The amount and type of meat you can slice is largely based on the size of the blade, with bigger blades being able to cut through bigger and harder foods. Since bigger blades are usually found on meat slicers that are made for commercial use (so that businesses can work with larger cuts to create more meat slices quicker), the prices on these models are typically much higher. Unless you really plan on running your home like a deli, then you don’t need to get a slicer with too large of a blade.
Most households will only need a blade of around 7 inches, so focus on models with blades that size or about a half of an inch bigger. You’ll easily be able to cut through common lunch meats and most breads at that size without any issues. Blades this size are available in both serrated and smooth varieties, based on your individual needs.
Shorter Slicing Range
This is another area where you can significantly lower the price by focusing on a slicer that delivers the most commonly used values instead of a model that offers slicing thicknesses far off into the specialty range. The odds of you needing to regularly create ultra thick slices of meat is pretty low, so you should focus on a slicer with a maximum thickness of around ½ inch. If you do want to make thicker slices frequently, then you might want to just focus on an electric carving knife instead of a slicer, since those are definitely going to be cheaper to purchase.
On the other side, most slicers offer a thinness that can compare to what you would get at a deli, so you don’t need to worry about this one as much. If you’re looking for paper-thin slices, however, then you have to understand that you’re going to be paying more for that kind of precision.
Less Powerful Motor
The strength of the motor that comes in the meat slicer controls how much meat you can slice at a time, as well as its ability to work through those tougher cuts. Represented in wattage, you’re usually going to see slicers with motors in the 100-300 watt range, with increments usually showing up in 25 watt increments. A 300 watt motor is actually incredibly powerful, especially for a meat slicer, and it’s what you’re going to see on those heavy duty commercial-grade models, because they’re made to handle huge quantities of meat on a daily basis.
To keep your costs low, look for a slicer with a motor under 200 watts. It’s very common to find models with a 150 watt motor, which is still very strong and capable of cutting through most common meats. You might have to slice a bit more slowly to avoid creating friction with the internal systems that could damage the motor.
It’s true with cars, and it’s true with meat slicers – focusing on models with a more simplistic design is going to help you reduce your overall costs. Detachable carriage guards or separate food catching trays are definitely nice to have, but by no means required for you to actually use the slicer. Focus on models that leave out the frills and accessories, and you should be able to lower the cost quite significantly. Make sure you read through the product description for the slicer to understand exactly what’s included, so that you can determine if it comes with unnecessary extras.
Lowering the price of a meat slicer so that it fits within your budget is much easier when you follow the tips above, but make sure you’re not cutting out something that you actually do want or need. Sometimes, it’s worth it to spend a little bit extra in order to save yourself a ton of time or trouble down the line, so remember that when you head out to discover your new slicer.