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I recently bought a new meat grinder and they recommend washing it with hot water, drying it completely, and spraying a food grade silicone to prevent the stainless steel parts from rusting. Can I just use a light coating of oil like I do my cast iron to prevent rust?

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Best to allow a day or so before marking the accepted answer, there is plenty of knowledge to be tapped into, that may result in better answers –  TFD Feb 11 '13 at 7:28

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

Dry stainless steel parts should not rust, and should not need any oil for storage

For non-stainless steel parts, use any food grade oil as a rust preventative coasting. You can wash this off before use

Most meat grinders need a drop or two of oil on the bearing surfaces before you start grinding. Use any food oil you have handy as you will be washing it off when finished

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the blade and plates are usually not stainless even if the rest of the unit is. I always figured it was because stainless (while harder and better and holding an edge) is somewhat brittle and could flake off from bits of bone. just a thought though.

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Good point. Quality meat grinders have hardened steel blades, and tempered augers –  TFD Jul 18 at 7:17

Oil on cast iron pans is not for preventing rust, it's for seasoning - the heat polymerizes the oil and creates a nonstick layer bound to the pan. That's why you don't put oil on the whole pan, just the part you actually cook food on. If you try to oil your meat grinder, it's not going to be bound to it, and you'll just have an oily grinder that gets oil on everything it touches.

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So is there no alternative? The problem is I don't know where to buy food grade silicone so I ordered it from LEM and I've already washed the parts. Should I even worry about rust after one wash and dry? –  Robert Feb 11 '13 at 2:13
    
if your worried about rust, store the parts in a big bag of rice and it will soak up all the available moisture. I do this with my grinding blade and stand mixer parts. –  Brendan Feb 11 '13 at 18:04
    
@Robert No, stainless steel doesn't really rust (that's why it's called stainless), so I don't really see why you'd need to. I also assumed from the question that it was talking about spraying the whole thing, not just a couple parts - if it's a few odd pieces (say, the cutting blades) then sure, you can put some oil on them, and it won't be a huge mess. –  Jefromi Feb 11 '13 at 19:28

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