Food processors are versatile kitchen gadgets that will liven up, streamline, and complete your cooking routine. They allow you to chop, slice, shred, or blend large quantities of food very quickly, saving you lots of preparation time. Many can serve other common cooking functions such as kneading dough, making pie crust, and beating egg whites. They can be used to grind meat, create homemade sauces, or even make soft-serve ice cream. For those who spend a lot of time in the kitchen, often make large quantities of food, or like to meal prep, a food processor is a must-have.
What to Look for in a Food Processor
If you’re wanting to purchase a food processor, here’s what you should consider:
- Size: Food processors are available large and small, with a wide selection of bowl capacities. Whether you’re cooking only for yourself or for a whole party of people, you should have no trouble finding a food processor that fits your needs.
- Functions: If you’re someone who cooks or bakes quite often, you may wish to invest in a food processor that can do more than cut and chop food. There are options available that can do things like knead dough, beat eggs whites and batters, and make juices or nut butters. You can also find food processors that are designed for quick assembly, or are dishwasher safe.
- Price: Like many kitchen appliances, food processors can range quite a bit in price depending on the quality of their material, additional features, and other factors. When shopping for one, you may find it helpful to have a budget in mind and to know how often you plan to use your food processor.
- Power: The higher a food processor’s wattage, the more powerful it will be. Chopping food alone doesn’t require much power, but if you plan to use your food processor for tougher tasks like mixing dough, you’ll want to buy one that has a higher wattage, closer to 700 watts.
Best Value: Hamilton Beach 12-Cup Stack & Snap Food Processor
A great option for those in the market for a high-quality food processor but don’t have a couple hundred dollars to drop on new kitchen appliances. The blades are top-notch stainless steel, with a 450-watt motor and a bowl that can hold up to 12 cups of chopped food at once. The bowl is also sealed to prevent any liquids from seeping out. Besides the main S-shaped blade, the reversible disk along the bottom can slice and shred depending on which side is facing up. The feed chute on the lid is big enough that you can slide whole foods (such as tomatoes) through instead of cutting them in halves or quarters beforehand, saving you further prep and processing time. The “stack and snap” design doesn’t require you to lock or twist the device into place, which makes this food processor easier to use. A simple function guide is included to help you figure out which buttons and blades to use for whichever function you need your food processor to serve at any given time.
Hamilton Beach Stack & Snap Food Processor and Vegetable Chopper, BPA Free, Stainless Steel Blades, 12 Cup Bowl, 2-Speed 450 Watt Motor, Black (70725A)
A high-quality and high functioning food processor for the budget-conscious.
Most Powerful: Ninja BN601 Professional Plus Food Processor
This food processor was designed to be able to change functions in mere seconds. All you have to is switch the disc or blades at the bowl’s center post and you’re all set to go. In addition, four programs come preset, so all you have to do is touch a button. This food processor is also quick and easy to clean, either in the dishwasher or by pulsing some warm water and one or two small drops of soap inside. The bowl can hold up to 9 cups of food, and you can expect consistent and precise cuts for loads great and small. The 1,000 peak watts of power allow you to perform all kinds of heavy-duty tasks, including mixing up to two pounds of dough in as little as 30 seconds.
Ninja BN601 Professional Plus Food Processor, 1000 Peak Watts, 4 Functions for Chopping, Slicing, Purees & Dough with 9-Cup Processor Bowl, 3 Blades, Food Chute & Pusher, Silver
A powerful 1,000-watt food processor that can change functions in just a few seconds.
Best Miniature: HaveGet Electric Mini Food Processor
Here’s an ideal food processor for those who cook only for themselves or a few people at a time, or don’t use a food processor on a regular basis but still want to have one on hand should the need arise. This food processor holds 2 cups of food at a time and has a 400-watt motor, able to grind and chop a wide range of ingredients, including meats and ice, despite its small size. It can be easily disassembled for easier cleaning. Plenty of safety measures come equipped, from the non-slip mat to safety switches for the blades. The device will also turn itself off to prevent the motor from overheating.
HaveGet Electric Mini Food Processor Blender 1 Pack 400 Watt and 4 Stainless Steel Blades Control Multifunctional Meat Chopper Grinder for Meat, Vegetables, Fruits and Nuts (2CUP GRY)
A small, lightweight food processor that is still capable of chopping heavy-duty ingredients like meats and ice.
Best Premium: Cuisinart FP-11GM Elemental 11 Cup Food Processor
With its 550-watt motor, stainless steel discs and blades, 11-cup capacity work bowl with convenient measurement marks, and its Seal Tight Advantage system, this premium food processor is able to fit, chop, slice, shred, and mix any type of food or drink you need it to. The sleek gunmetal body gives it a modern but timeless feel that will look great in any kitchen. The feeding tube is wide for larger pieces of food, and it comes with three pushers of varying lengths to safely insert the food. It has electronic touchpad controls that make it easy to use, and it comes with a highly protective BladeLock System. All the removable parts are dishwasher safe for your convenience.
Cuisinart FP-11GM Elemental 11 Cup Food Processor, Gunmetal
A sleek, elegant, and modern-looking food processor that packs plenty of power, accessories, and abilities.