The $3.99 ALDI Kitchen Tool I Only Wish I Had Bought Sooner

This smart ALDI find makes quick work of breaking up ground meat and sausage and is a steal at only $3.99.

The $3.99 ALDI Kitchen Tool I Only Wish I Had Bought Sooner
aldi storefront
Simply Recipes / Getty Images

I first learned about a tool called a ground meat chopper sometime in 2018. I was writing a story about uncommon kitchen utensils and posted it on Facebook, asking friends to share recommendations for tools they loved and couldn't live without.

The ground meat chopper was enthusiastically mentioned back then, but I brushed it off, thinking the goofy-looking gadget was gimmicky.

Six years later, I finally got one, and my only regret is that I didn't buy it sooner. It helps break down ground meat much more easily and quickly, making light work of dinner many nights of the week. So, when I saw that ALDI was selling the Crofton Meat Chopper, I knew I had to share. 

It's baffling that it took me six years to buy this when literally every time I cooked ground meat or sausage, that recommendation came to mind. Looking back on the Facebook post in preparation for writing this story, I noticed several other friends had also commented that they had and loved this product.

The original poster, Amanda, shared that she's "generally very skeptical of products that only have one use," but went on to say that "this mix and chop thingy from Pampered Chef is really the BEST for breaking up ground meat" and she used it all the time. "This is really the only gimmicky thing I have in my kitchen, but it's really useful."

She is right; if I'd listened to her in 2018, I would have saved myself a lot of time and frustration. The Pampered Chef's Mix N Chop is listed at $34.99 on Amazon, but the ALDI Crofton Chopper is selling for just $3.99. 

Crofton meat crusher over a colorful background
Simply Recipes / Photo Illustration by Wanda Abraham / Retailers below

Why I Love This Meat Chopper

This meat chopper has become my favorite tool for quickly breaking up and evenly browning ground meat and sausage—something we tend to eat a lot of—which makes meal prep significantly faster and easier.

One of the biggest draws of the meat chopper is how evenly it breaks up and distributes ground meat in the pan. Most people probably use a spatula to do this task, which has one main edge or “blade." With the chopper, you're working with five blades, quickly breaking up large pieces and clumps and ensuring the meat browns and cooks evenly.

It's convenient for multiple pounds of meat, which used to be a real arm workout with just a spatula—I once made these chicken tacos for a crew of neighbors before I had this tool and needed reinforcements just to cook the meat. 

Cleaning it is also a breeze since the whole chopper is dishwasher-safe and has minimal nooks and crannies for food to get trapped in. I usually do a quick rinse under the tap, then add it to the regular dishwasher cycle so it's ready for the next time.

ground beef cooking in a pan for salisbury ground beef recipe
Simply Recipes / Photo by Jen Causey / Food Styling by Emily Nabors Hall / Prop Styling by Lindsey Lower

Other Ways I Use This Tool 

ALDI calls it a "meat chopper" because it blows other tools out of the water when it comes to preparing meat. But this little tool has plenty of non-meat uses, too. As per Amanda's recommendations, I've used it to chop cooked potatoes, chickpeas, beans, big batches of things like egg salad, and even vegetables when I've started cooking and realized that I want them to be a bit smaller. It has a comfortable grip and thumb rest that make it easy to get leverage, even when the pan is full.

Ultimately, the ALDI Crofton Meat Chopper is one of those rare, seemingly gimmicky buys that lives up to the hype. It's a genius invention that's well-designed and makes cooking quicker and easier than ever before. And with that $3.99 price tag, it's also really affordable. But even if I had to pay $34.99 to have it again, I probably would. Since this is an ALDI find, it definitely won't last long. So don't wait on this one, like I did, and regret not buying it sooner!