Home » Minced meat vs ground meat - What's the difference?

Minced meat vs ground meat - What's the difference?

Minced meat vs ground meat - What's the difference?

Yes, there is a big difference between minced meat and ground meat. Surprising, right?

Not many people realize that although these two ways of preparing meat look very similar, they differ greatly in their preparation, in their flavors and textures, and in their use.

So what are the differences between minced meat and ground beef? Ground beef is made with meat with additional ingredients that are put through a grinder, while ground beef is made with 100% meat and is sometimes minced, not ground, resulting in a coarser texture.

In today’s article, we’ll look at the main differences between minced and ground meat, including how they’re made, their flavor, texture, and color, as well as their uses.


Let’s start with the best known of the two. Many people often refer to any type of finely processed meat as “ground meat,” when in fact, real ground meat differs from other types.

Minced meat is meat that has been passed through a meat grinder. Although it is technically minced, it is not minced meat.

Large cubes of meat are fed into the top of the mincer, often along with fat and additional ingredients, and worked to a very fine pasty consistency.

The meat is then passed through the mincer and pushed out in long, rope-like pieces.

Like products like sausages and scrapple, ground meat also often contains other ingredients, so it is not 100% beef, pork, chicken, etc. These ingredients are not synthetic at all. Ingredients include mostly water, soybeans, or excess fat from other animals.

Minced meat works best in foods that cook for a long time, such as stews, soups, and curries. Anything where you don’t need the texture of the meat and where the flavor comes from the spices and herbs, not the meat itself.


Minced meat is meat that has been minced very finely. In some countries, it can also be passed through a meat grinder, but without any additional ingredients: only meat.

There are also large machines with very sharp blades that repeatedly mince the meat into very small pieces. Consequently, it has a coarser texture than minced meat.

In most countries, by law, the label cannot say “minced meat” if it contains other ingredients. Meat cannot bulge with fat or water, and because of that it has a much more authentic and deeper meat flavor.

Minced meat should be used in dishes where meaty flavor is important, such as lasagna, meatballs, meat patties, or spaghetti bolognese.

The flavor of the meat must be the protagonist of the dish and must not be diluted.

Due to its thicker -although finer- texture, it is perfect for stews and textured dishes.

What is the difference?

The main difference between minced and ground meat is their content. Minced meat is enriched with additional ingredients.

Minced meat is made from 100% meat and contains no additional ingredients.

This doesn’t mean that ground beef is inferior, just that it has different uses and won’t necessarily work like ground beef. Below you will find a table for your convenience.

Comparison between minced meat and ground meat [Table]

We’ve summarized the differences between minced and ground beef for you to review in this handy chart.

Mince Ground beef
Ingredients It uses about 70-80% meat, while the rest of the ingredients include water, additional fat, and soy. It is made with 100% meat (either beef, pork or chicken).
Production The meat and its additional ingredients are passed through a meat grinder to produce the specific texture and blend the ingredients. The meat is minced with knives or with a machine, but it rarely goes through a meat grinder (depending on the country you are in).
Texture Very fine texture in the form of long and fibrous pieces. Finely minced texture, much coarser than minced meat.
Color It has a diluted color due to the fat and water content. It has a much deeper color because it is made only with meat, and it is much more true to the color of real meat.
Taste It’s not noticeably watered down, but if you compare it to another, you’ll be able to tell the difference. Very fresh meat flavor, not altered by other ingredients.
Applications Best suited for dishes that do not focus on meat texture or flavors. More suitable for dishes with strong meat flavors that need texture.

We hope you have found this guide a valuable resource. And if you have never tried one or the other, we encourage you to experiment with new recipes and tell us about them.