8 Best Meat Tenderizers of 2021

Last Updated on by SteakEat

Every pro chef requires a high-quality meat pounder to flatten the chicken breasts, chicken-fried steak, and veal scallops.

But a meat tenderizer does more than that; it also comes in handy when evening out the thickness of a butterflied lamb or chicken to allow uniform cooking.

This article presents the top 8 must-have meat tenderizers that will meet and exceed your expectations.

Read along!

PRO 48-Needle Stainless Steel Meat Tenderizer

stainless steel blade meat tenderizer piercing through a cut of steak on a cutting boardThis meat tenderizer is a unique craft featuring extra-long and extra-thin stainless-steel blades that guarantee you excellent succulent results. The plastic handle is stable and allows an easy and comfortable grip even with long hours of use.

The durable and detachable design makes it durable. It will last a lifetime without rusting or breaking while enduring the toughest of meats.

Since the tenderizer marinades deeper while fully infusing the cut with flavor, it’ll apply all the seasonings and rubs on your meat for a flavorful and unforgettable meal. You can use it on any meat, including chicken, beef, fish, veal, pork, steak, round roast, London broil, pork loin, chicken breast, and more.

This meat tenderizer will reduce your cook time by around 40%, lock in the juices, and prevent meat shrinkage. And, of course, less cooking time translates to better nutrient and flavor retention. This feature makes the tool a big win for a professional chef and any home.


  • Easy to clean and dishwasher-safe
  • Weighs 7.2 ounces
  • Detachable handle design
  • Ergonomic plastic handle design
  • 48 needle meat tenderizer blades
  • Ultra-thin and extra-long knife design
  • Rust-proof stainless steel blades construction
  • Plastic cover all blade lines


This is a very powerful meat tenderizer. It helps to pierce meat and beef steaks without any effort creating channels that help any marinade soak in nicely and deeply.

It is safe, easy to clean in a dishwasher and durable. In my opinion, this is the best meat tenderizer out there for almost any cut of meat.

KitchenAid Gourmet Meat Tenderizer

If versatility is your number one priority when it comes to buying meat tenderizers, look no further! The KitchenAid Gourmet meat tenderizer has got you covered! This mallet style kitchen gadget comes ready to flatten or tenderize any type of meat to make help you and your loves ones a delicious dinner.

Unlike many tenderizers, this one features 2 different surfaces; a raised and a flat surface to cut any meat. The soft surface comes in handy when pounding and flattening cutlets. You can also use it to crush spices. On the other hand, the rough surface does an excellent job tenderizing different types of meat.

The mallet boasts an ergonomic handle construction for a comfortable grip. The hole in this handle allows multiple hanging storage options for convenience. Experienced users will love the non-slip handle that prevents potential injuries during use.

The mallet’s one-piece aluminum design makes it remarkably lightweight as aluminum is generally less dense than stainless steel. Even though this mallet tenderizer is durable, it may not be as sturdy as stainless steel since there’s a density difference.

Performance is the one feature that makes this meat tenderizer shine bright. With KitchenAid, you needn’t struggle with the toughest cuts. The textured surface does the donkey-work, preventing you from over tenderizing meat. Its versatility means that it can work on any type of meat, from beef to pork to venison, just to mention a few.


  • It weighs 10.4 ounces
  • Comfortable to hold with ergonomic handle design
  • Easy to clean
  • It measures 11 inches long
  • It has a heavy duty cast aluminum construction
  • The product offers a 1-year replacement coverage and a lifetime limited warranty
  • Dual sided; the textured side on one side and smooth surface on the other side


This versatile tenderizer comes with all sorts of innovative applications for tenderizing meat. The 0.7-pound weight makes this mallet slightly lighter than its counterparts, hence an ideal choice for tenderizing and pounding large meat batches. KitchenAid Gourmet Mallet Meat Tenderizer is waiting for you!

Meat Tenderizer,304 Stainless Steel Heavy Sturdy Meat Mallet/Pounder/Hammer

The durability of this sturdy mallet-type meat tenderizer is uncompromised! No meat, even the toughest, can stand before this pounder. One look at it tells you that it will last. And that is precisely what it does!

The mallet tenderizer is from 304 stainless steel that is not only strong and durable but also corrosion-resistant. The latter characteristics make it safe when in contact with meat. It neither alters the test nor adds some “metallic” flavor to your food.

The mallet comes with a smooth exterior surface that cleans easily. Furthermore, its dishwasher-friendly quality makes cleaning a breeze.

The ergonomic handle design gives this mallet a comfortable grip. You needn’t worry about getting tired when working on large quantities of meat!

The solid hammerhead comes with an overall weight of 1.65 lb. This weight is heavy enough to crush the hardest of ingredients and tenderize any type of meat. Strike the chicken breasts or steak with the mallet, loosen the natural fibers, and you’re good to go. Here’s what you always need to enjoy softer and smoother meat.

The mutton’s flat side knows best to make the steaks smooth. The textured surface comes in when you need to tender your meat and create a juicy steak. These dual-sided characteristics is all you need to make your cook experience smoother and enjoyable.

The mallet has a hook at its end for easy storage. You can hang it on your kitchen wall after use and pull it out when duty calls.


  • Heavy duty 1 lb tenderizer perfect for thick beef cuts
  • 100% dishwasher safe and easy to clean
  • 304 stainless steel construction
  • Dual sides with different cone tips
  • Heavy duty with an overall weight of 1.65lb


If you’re still looking to get the value out of your money, this 304 Stainless Steel Heavy Sturdy meat tenderizer is the way to go! There has never been a more robust way of tenderizing your meat…particularly the tough cuts.

Checkered Chef Mallet Style Meat Tenderizer

You’ve finally found the best meat tenderizer to meet and exceed all your kitchen needs. The Checkered Chef Meat Tenderizer!

Most meat tenderizers discolor when washed in a dishwasher. Others will leave behind black spots and metal powder after dishwashing, but not with this tenderizer! The tool is specially designed for dishwasher cleaning. You’ll be happy to know that its non-stick coat fully protects the aluminum material, hence making it 100% dishwasher friendly.

The light weight makes this meat tenderizer easy to lift without any muscle strains. But though light, it is heavy and robust enough to complete the job within the shortest time possible. You only need to apply some little force in lifting the hammer and leave the rest of the work to gravity.

The soft rubberized handle will absorb the hammer’s shock waves, leaving you with a comfortable grip all day long while you tenderize the meat. More good news, the handle is friendly to use by both right- and left-handed chefs.

If you’re looking to create a perfect and juicy tender steak, go for the textured tenderizing side. But if you’re planning to pound some schnitzels or other similar pieces of meat, the flat side will do the trick for tough cuts.


  • Weight of 9.3 ounces
  • 100% dishwasher safe and easy to clean from meat particles
  • Comfortable to hold with rubberized grip handle
  • Perfect balance between weight and size
  • Dual sided with both textured side and flat side


The perfect weight in a perfect construction for the perfect work! Go for Checkered Chef Meat Tenderizer if your busy schedules do not allow you to spend too much time on cleaning a meat tenderizer.

Norpro Stainless Steel Meat Tenderizer

The Norpro Meat Tenderizer is the most affordable choice on the list! If you’re working on tight budgets, do not overlook this cute white option. Norpro allows tenderizing meat like a pro chef perfectly. It is best suited to tenderize roasts and beef steaks.

Norpro’s meat tenderizer is designed from a sturdy plastic material. Rather than having thin stainless steel blades, the unit comes with 28 spikes that will create large holes to hold your spices and marinades. It can also flatten your chicken and thick beef steaks pounding meats into even thickness for uniform cooking. You can use it to pierce meats before marinating so they are more tender.

The spikes are not as sharp and hard as the metal blades, allowing you to leave the meat tenderizer in your drawer without the fear of accidental cuts.

Its top handle offers a comfortable and precise grip when you’re pressing the tool into your meat. Newbies and small children alike will find this safe to use.

When the tenderizer isn’t being used on meat, it doubles for use in docking dough as you bake your confectionary or making poke holes in foodstuffs like potatoes. It allows your meat to soak in flavors and spices while utilizing the heavy-duty spring action technology.

Norpro is only washable by hand and is not dishwasher-safe.


  • Weighs only 28 ounces
  • An overall height of 7-1/2 inches
  • It has a plastic construction
  • It features 24 stainless-steel prongs
  • Spring-loaded 2-inch-diameter plastic disk at its bottom.


Who said meat tenderizing should be so complicated? You can still get going with the simplicity and affordability of Norpro Meat Tenderizer. And if your kid loves to help with the kitchen chores, this tenderizer would be a great addition to your kitchen gadgets list. And of course, the Norpro Meat Tenderizer is affordable enough to suit your pockets and tenderize meat on a budget.

OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Bladed Meat Tenderizer

Transform your chicken breasts from chewy to juicy and tender with the help of the OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Bladed Meat Tenderizer!

Another blade-style unit from our best meat tenderizers list. It comes with 50 sharp blades that are sharp enough to slice through the tough fibers of meat and still create uniform channels to allow marinade penetration. Additionally, these sharp and durable blades will help you to create pockets and reduce the overall marinating and cook time for all sorts of cuts of meat. This process promotes uniform cooking and allows the meat to retain its natural juices.

Its rounded and contoured top-rack is elegantly-designed to fit into your palm comfortably even as you handle tough steaks.

The clear base surface allows you to control the blades evenly as you tenderize your meat. It also makes it easy to see where the blades have passed through.

And storage got easier with this product; you only need to toggle it, and the lock mechanism will recess to cover the sharp blades for safety.

The machine is easy to use and wash. It features dishwasher-safe removable components that allow thorough cleaning from meat particles.


  • Non-slip grip handle
  • It has recessed toggle lock
  • Removable top-rack
  • Contoured shape design
  • Sharp and durable 50 tenderizing blades


Go for this product if you’re looking for a tool that will tenderize your meat and flatten the cutlets with ease. And the best news is that the product is customizable; it can be adjusted to avoid smashing tough meat.

Shebaking Meat Tenderizer Tool

All of the Injectors of this unit have 100% food-grade construction. They are also from food-safe 304-grade stainless steel, and this means that you needn’t worry about the tenderizer injecting harmful chemicals into your meat.

The unit offers ultimate control and is easy to use thanks to the ergonomic design of the non-slip handle. You can work with the unit for long hours without experiencing any muscle strains.

Here’s an opportunity to experience efficient cooking. The tenderizer gadget lets you tenderize meat while injecting marinade simultaneously. This feature, in turn, reduces your overall cook time by around 40%.

The robust and durable construction of the meat tenderizer is worth delighting in. The quality stainless-steel needle blades of the tenderizer creates neat channels in the meat while providing deep flavor levels. The needle also breaks the meat’s connective tissues, making your meat tender to eat.

It comes with 2 depth settings that will give you your choice of meat thicknesses. When well maintained, the tenderizer will help you cook delicious meals for as many years as possible.

The unit’s injector is ideal for nearly all types of meats like pork loin, beef, turkey, lamb chops, chicken breast, fish, and so on.

Lastly, the meat tenderizer is easy to use and wash. It features dishwasher-safe components that will make cleaning a breeze.


  • Weighs 11.7 ounces
  • 3 stainless steel needle-like applicators.
  • 27 stainless steel ultra sharp needle blades.
  • 2 depth settings for different meat thicknesses.
  • 100% food-safe 304-grade stainless steel and food grade ABS construction.


The Shebaking Meat Tenderizer Tool is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a tool for your outdoor barbecue party. It’s also easy to use and clean so go ahead – tenderize a tough thick steak with it and turn it into a tender brilliance!

Norpro Grip-EZ Stainless Steel Meat Pounder

Here’s another tool from Norpro. That tells us that Norpro is a renowned brand famous for designing and supplying high-quality caliber kitchenware. The brand’s innovative and high-quality cooking product displays the premium artistry and superior materials used in the construction. Well, the Norpro Grip-EZ Stainless Steel Meat Pounder is no exception!

This cutting-edge meat tenderizer boasts a state-of-the-art design that will leave your kitchen looking modern. The tool’s black and white color gives it an elegant touch and makes it a great addition to any kitchen counter. If fashion is a significant concern to you, be sure to pick this product.

This kitchenware does excellent work in pounding meat and vegetables, leaving them with a uniform thickness. That is the unit’s most outstanding feature; it understands the art of cooking any type of meat evenly.

The heft and shape of this elegant vertical-styled unit give the perfect combination of force and control. It is heavy enough to provide a quick working experience but tiny enough to ensure precise maneuverability. This ability is thanks to the professional weight of 26 ounces and an inch diameter of 3-¼.

The vertical handle also make cooking more manageable by allowing for a firmer and more comfortable grip. This design prevents hand cramping and fatigue. The handle will perfectly fit in any hand size. It remains soft and cozy even when wet.

Though the unit boasts an iron construction, it has stainless steel put over the iron material. This feature gives it reliable durability and also prevents rusting.

Like many units on the list, this product is easy to use and wash. It features dishwasher-safe removable components that allow thorough cleaning.


  • Weighs 28 ounces.
  • Vertical-style design.
  • 3-1/4 inches in diameter.
  • It has a Santoprene handle.
  • Mirror-polished stainless steel construction.


Made with a mirror-polished stainless steel material and a santoprene handle that offers the surest grip, no other meat tenderizer beats this unit’s ability to offer even tenderizing and cooking.

What’s The Best Way to Tenderize Tough Meat?

Using meat tenderizer (just like any other way of making meat softer) has two negatives effects on any cut of meat.

  • First, it can affect the appearance of your beloved steak or any other meat cut.
  • Second, chemical meat tenderizer can ruin the flavor and make the texture to appear mushy.

This is why it’s important to NOT overdo it by using meat tenderizers of any kind.

Here are some important tips for when you tenderize the meat so it becomes tender without any of those negative consequences.

1. Don’t Buy Pre-Tenderized Cuts of Meat

You can sometimes find them in stores. These cuts of meat have been mechanically tenderized in order to make them softer from the start.

Relying on those commercial meat tenderizers is not something I personally recommend. Instead try using the tenderizer that you own at home right before actually cooking your steak.

That way you reduce the chance of bacteria actually getting inside the meat from its surface.

2. Don’t Use Chemical Meat Tenderizers

There is nothing wrong with using natural meat tenderizers that you can get from naturally occurring sources (e.g. protein-breaking enzymes like papain from papaya, bromelain from pineapple…).

The problem is other ingredients that come with them once you buy a meat tenderizing season. These ingredients include salt (not good for when marinating), corn starch (why would you add it?) and other chemical fillers.

Salt is not a tenderizing agent. In fact, using salt in a marinade brines meat rather than softening it. It also extracts juices from within the meat making it less flavorful and actually tougher!

Corn starch and other fillers are not good on any cuts of meat but matters get worse when they are affected by high heat. The products of this type of chemical reaction are not the safest for consumption.

3. Only Use Meat Tenderizer With Touch Pieces of Meat

I don’t recommend using meat tenderizers with tender cuts like fillet mignon, rib eye, NY strip etc. These cuts are already tender and using a tenderizer with these types of meat is not the best way to enjoy them.

It’s quite the opposite with pieces of meat that are naturally tough. These are tri tips, flat iron steaks, chuck steaks, round steaks, briskets etc. Using a stainless steel blades meat tenderizer with these cuts of meat would help to upgrade these lower end tough cuts right to high quality cuts that are tender and delicious.

4. Use a Meat Tenderizer With a Marinade For Added Flavor

Gently piercing meat with blade-type tenderizer produces little holes that help any marinade to soak in nicely deep inside those cuts of meat.

Using a combination of tenderizer and marinade helps to reduce cooking time, adds a lot of flavor and actually makes those cuts of meat tender and delicious.

For quick results, here is what you need to do:

  1. Take the cuts of meat you are about to cook from the fridge
  2. Use one of the best meat tenderizers from this review and gently pierce those pieces of meat
  3. Put meat inside a container on in a food-safe plastic bag and fill it up with a marinade
  4. Marinate meats overnight in a fridge or for 2 hours at a room temperature
  5. Cook using any of the cooking methods and enjoy those tender cuts


Now you’re aware of the top 8 best meat tenderizers in the 2021’s market. All these products are tested for quality performance, construction, and lifetime durability. We’re glad that this post was handy, and it will help you make a wise purchase decision which will finally help you to manage tough cuts.

All the best in your purchase!

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