Meat slicers are not only a nice addition to your kitchen, but are also essential to the deli, sandwich shops, and grocery stores. Despite their wide use, most owners fail to properly sanitize the meat slicer; at least half of deli slicers don’t meet the FDA food code guidelines.
Being unable to keep your meat slicer clean results in bacteria growth throughout the entire kitchen, thus making the importance of properly cleaning a commercial meat slicer even more critical, since you would not want to spread a foodborne illness and not pass health inspections in your food businesses.
Worry not – properly maintaining your machine’s cleanliness is not as difficult once you get the hang of it and let it become an essential routine. Just take note of all the instructions that follow and you will pass all health inspections, as well as avoid dangerous food-related diseases.
Table of Contents
- Tips Before You Start
- Instructions for Cleaning Meat Slicers
- Light Cleaning vs Deep Cleaning
- More tips
Tips Before You Start
Before you start cleaning a meat slicer, make sure you follow these crucial guidelines below.
- Handle your meat slicer blade with protective cut-resistant gloves to prevent any accidents. You can always order them online or find them in a nearby grocery store.
- Make sure you use a gentle soap (dish detergent dissolved with mild or hot water will do) and mild water. Avoid harsh tools such as steel wool. Preferably opt for a gentle scrub pad to not corrode the meat slicer parts.
Keep Your Meat Slicer Dry
- Never leave your meat slicer in a dish sink or other wet places. Storing a wet meat slicer will encourage harmful bacteria growth and rust spread.
Read All Instructions
- Never neglect the manufacturer’s instructions. The following guide would suffice for any manual or commercial meat slicer, however, taking a brief look through the booklet that comes along with your appliances will let you know if there are any other steps you should take before or after cleaning a meat slicer.
Once you feel ready, please continue with the instructions below.
Instructions for Cleaning Meat Slicers
Step 1: Unplug and Disassemble
Once you’re done using your machine, make sure it is unplugged from its power source. Put your power cord as far away as possible to avoid contact with your cleaning supplies.
Next, set the blade to zero and wipe away any large food particles before disassembling the meat slicer. Do not use steel wool, utilize a soft cloth or a scrub pad, as well as remember to wear protective gloves.
If your model contains a knife removal tool, you should make use of it. Briefly go through your instruction manual if there are any instances you should be aware of about your particular machine.
Remove the meat slicer blade, center plate, product tray, blade plate, blade guards, and knife sharpener or a sharpening stone to take apart the meat slicer machine.
Step 2: Clean Large Food Particles
Simply wiping your meat slicer, of course, will not be enough to avoid a foodborne illness. After dismantling the machine, check the cleanliness of the slicer blade, scrub the slicer handle, ring guard mount, product tray, blade guard, gauge plate, and slice deflector. Use a small brush to get into well-hidden corners, and ensure that you get rid of all the built-up dirt.
Step 3: Wash the Parts
Some accumulated dirt wouldn’t be possible to remove with a towel and a brush, hence why you need to create a cleaning solution.
Making a Cleaning Solution
Mix a detergent solution with hot water in a wash bucket and leave it on standby for your meat slicer. Corrosive mixtures will not do any good for your deli slicer, so please read all labels on your detergent before using it.
Meat slicer cleaning
Now, remember to not use abrasive cleaning sponges; use a soft sponge, place all the meat slicer parts in a prepared dish sink and thoroughly clean them. Do not rush, a lot of dangerous bacteria was building up, and you mustn’t miss any filthy spots.
If you notice that a slicer blade appears to be wearing out, or if other parts are not as effective as they used to be, now is going to be the best time to take care of them.
Grease slide rods with a special food-grade lubricant – avoid using cooking oil. Blade maintenance plays great significance in how well meat slicers operate, so never fear to double-check their condition.
For even better meat slicer blade maintenance, use a paper towel or a clean cloth and give a more thorough wipe to the backside of the slicer blade between the blade and the blade guard to remove all food remains.
Dip a small brush in hot water and go through every small corner of the ring guard, slicer blade guard, etc.
Step 4: Sanitizing a Meat Slicer
To top off all the cleaning, use a sanitizing spray to polish the meat slicer parts, to ensure that bacteria from the raw meat and food particles will not cause a foodborne illness.
Making a Sanitizing Solution
Create a mixture from 1/4 of cold water and 4 teaspoons of 5% household bleach, then pour it into a spray bottle for comfortable use. Special meat slicer sanitizing spray can also be bought, although homemade ones will do just as fine.
Sanitize Your Meat Slicer
Simply spray your meat slicer machine with the sanitizing solution, including the parts that did not come into contact with raw meat. Don’t be afraid with going too heavy with your spray – all harmful bacteria must be abolished for proper food safety.
Step 5: Air Dry and Reassemble
Once you are sure that your meat slicer is clean, let it air dry completely. To speed up the process, you can pat visibly wet parts with a clean towel to absorb the water and spray quicker.
With all former steps completed, reassemble your meat slicer – remember to wear cut-resistant gloves! Until your next use, cover your deli slicer with a cloth to protect it from dust and other sources of grime.
Light Cleaning vs Deep Cleaning
The instructions above describe how to deep clean a meat slicer, however, in some instances, you might feel like going for light cleaning.
Deep cleaning a meat slicer is better to prevent food poisoning after cutting smoked or raw meat (which leaves a significant amount of bacteria in your machine), yet giving your meat slicer a lighter clean will save you time and encourage you to continue proper maintenance of your device.
Deep cleaning is impossible very often because this operation requires a lot of time and effort. Usually, this includes a thorough inspection of every detail in addition to cleaning.
How to Light Clean a Meat Slicer
Wash the slicer blade and let it air dry, and for the time being wipe the guard with a wet towel to get rid of visible food particles. Briefly clean the device using a detergent solution in all areas.
Using a different clean towel and a food-grade cleaner, rub the food chute, product pusher, blade guards, and other areas that came in contact with food. Never use steel wool, even for brief light cleaning. Rinse the parts with hot water and dry everything before reassembling and using your clean meat slicer again.
Bacteria on Your Meat Slicer Blade
Raw meat harbors dangerous bacterium such as E. Coli, Salmonella, and C. Perfringens. These common bacteria are often culprits for regular symptoms like diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, upset stomach, and other issues concerning the digestive system.
Unsanitary and irresponsible behavior towards commercial meat slicers will cause your customers the problems touched upon above, which is why knowing how to clean a meat slicer will save you from possible lawsuits and losses in your business.
Even though food leftovers are most noticeable on the blade, deep cleaning a meat slicer and ensuring that not a single part is left filthy is vital for proper food safety.
- Just like you wear kitchen gloves when handling hot pots and pans, you should wear cut-resistant protective gloves when cleaning your meat grinder. The blade of a grinder is incredibly sharp and can cause accidents in the home relatively quickly.
- A mild mixture of water and detergent is best. One that is too hard can eventually eat away at the grinder parts and make them more susceptible to rust.
- Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions!
What should you use to clean a meat slicer?
To know how to clean a meat slicer you need to follow simple instructions. To clean your slicer well, wash the blade of the slicer and let it air dry.
Then wipe the protective cover with a damp or paper towel to get rid of food particles. Use a detergent solution to clean all areas. Finally, wipe the food chute, pusher, guards, and other areas. Rinse and dry before reuse.
Avoiding cleaning your machine guarantees that foodborne illnesses are going to spread. It is critically important to regularly clean your meat slicer for food safety and to prolong the lifespan of your device.
If you run a commercial kitchen, it is even more important that you keep up with the FDA food safety guidelines. Failing to sanitize your device is putting your customers at great risk from harmful bacteria.
How do you clean a manual meat slicer?
Manual slicer machines don’t differ much from a commercial meat slicer – follow the same instructions and safety tips, as well as read your instructions booklet for any other information that you should be aware of. Clean it just as often and as thoroughly as a commercial machine would require.
How often should a meat slicer be cleaned?
Light cleaning should be done every time you change the consumable product, making it important to light clean the device at least once a day, often extending to numerous times per day if operated for commercial use.
Deep-cleaning meat slicers are required at the end of every day that it is utilized to prevent food buildup and bacteria reproduction.
Does a meat slicer need to be cleaned and sanitized?
Sanitize your machine every time you complete cleaning it. Ideally, check your meat slicer every 4 hours for any built-up muck, light clean it, and sanitize accordingly.
Make sure your disinfectant spray is ready to use after you clean your slicer, but before you reassemble it and be sure to read the instructions for specific recommendations for spray use.
Thus, if you clean the meat grinder after each use, it will remain clean and work better for longer without the risk of getting sick. Remember that the most important thing is not to submerge the slicer in water, but only to wipe it regularly.
Cleaning and sanitizing your professional grinder is your best bet. In addition, tips such as avoiding abrasive cleaners can help extend the life of your product. Doing and keeping track of both tasks regularly is the key to food poisoning prevention and is part of basic slicer maintenance.
To improve the efficiency of your cleaning, you should regularly monitor and schedule the cleaning of your meat grinder. The timing and frequency of cleaning will greatly affect the safety of the products.