How to Grind Bone Without a Grinder?

  • By: Brendan

My meat grinder broke down a couple of weeks ago, and since the new one I ordered won’t arrive for another month or so, I’ve been tinkering with the idea of grinding bones without a grinder.

In fact, there are several other appliances that you can use to grind bones without a grinder like a blender or food processor. That said, here’s how to properly grind bone without a grinder, and the tools you will need for the process.

How to Grind Bone Without a Grinder

What Equipment do You Need to Grind Bone without a Grinder?

If you don’t have a grinder, you can grind bones in a food processor or blender. You probably already have one or both of these appliances in your home, and you can use anyone to grind bone in the absence of a meat grinder.

However, it’s worth mentioning that you will probably not get the same results when you grind bones in a food processor or blender as a meat grinder.

What Type of Bones Can You Grind without a Grinder?

You can’t grind tough bones without a meat grinder but can grind soft bones in a blender or food processor.

Soft and small bones such as chicken wings, necks, fish, or rabbit bones are ideal for grinding without a grinder.

A grinder is designed to both mix and grind the ingredients you put into the hopper, whereas a blender isn’t really designed to grind, but as the name suggests “blend”—mix the ingredients together.

Adding to this, the blades of a blender are much slower than a meat grinder, therefore lack the power to grind tough bones.

How to Grind Bones without a Grinder?

Preparing the Bones

You can grind bones without a grinder as long as you prepare them properly for the process.

It’s best to use uncooked and soft bones and cut them into smaller pieces. Put the bones in a Ziploc bag, and freeze them for roughly half an hour.

Grinding the Bones

When you’re grinding bones using a food processor or blender in the absence of a grinder, make sure you add water or stuff the jar with bones.

After you load the food processor and have added water, turn it on the highest setting.

Check to see if you’ve achieved the desired texture, and repeat the process for approximately 10 seconds. Empty the jar, and clean the blender thoroughly.

Tips on Getting the Best Ground Bones without a Grinder

  1. Select soft, small and uncooked bones to grind with a food processor. The bones should be no longer than your thumb, and if they are, break them down into smaller pieces.
  2. Refrain from using cooked bones as they may splinter, and have fewer nutrients than raw bones.
  3. Load the bones in small batches to avoid causing damage to your blender or food processor blades, and for a smooth grinding process.
  4. Do not feed to bones too quickly, as doing so will clog or break the blender or food processor.
  5. When you load the food processor jar with bones, add a cup of water for the proper consistency.

How to Store Ground Bones?

I strongly recommend storing ground bones in an airtight bag in your freezer. This should make them last for months, and you can even add them to the bag over time.

You can keep the ground bones in the fridge, but you will have to use them within three to four days.

Even when storing ground bones in the freezer, check on them periodically to see if they’ve gone bad. Frozen ground bones that have gone bad will let out a foul smell or you can check the texture to see if they are sticky.

How does Bones Ground without a Grinder Compare to Bones Ground in a Grinder?

Grinding bones without a grinder will not produce the same results as a meat grinder, given that grinders are much more powerful appliances.

You also need a powerful blender or food processor to grind meat without a grinder. For the best results, run the blender for short periods, so you don’t end up over processing the bones.

You may not get the best texture the very first time, but after a couple of spins, the bones should be ground well.

Best Appliance to Grind Bones in the Absence of a Grinder

When shopping for an grinder alternative to grind bones, you’ve got several options to choose from. But I’ve done the research and narrowed it down to two great choices.

1. Cuisinart ECH-4SV Elemental 4-C Chopper Grinder

The Cuisinart Elemental chopper doubles down as a meat grinder and can be ordered in a choice of two colors—gunmetal and silver.

It comes with a large four-cup work bowl, which is just right to pack a large number of bones.

Adding to this, the Cuisinart Elemental grinder is fitted with a patented auto-reversing smart-power blade and topped with the exclusive Bladelock system for superior grinding.

All the parts of the Cuisinart grinder are dishwasher safe, making it easy to clean after use.


  • 4-cup bowl
  • 2 color options
  • Auto-reversing smart-power blade
  • Bladelock system
  • Removable parts are dishwasher safe


  • Lacks digital controls

2. Ninja BN601 Professional Plus Food Processor

The Ninja BN601 food processor offers 1000 watts of sheer power, making it easier to process bones and other tough ingredients.

It offers four intelligent preset programs to choose from for easier processing of foods. Additionally, the Ninja BN601 food processor comes with three different speeds—low, high, and pulse all that can be selected at the touch of a button.


  • 1000 watts power
  • 4 intelligent preset programs
  • 3 speeds
  • BPA-free and dishwasher safe ingredients


  • Limited to 1 color option

Final Thoughts

Grinding bones without a grinder is possible, as long as you prep the bones, that is break them up into very small pieces, and choose soft bones for the grinding process.

The best appliances to use to grind bones without a grinder are either a blender or food processor, both of which you probably also have in your kitchen arsenal.

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