Thanks to the best food processors, gone are the days when we used to have chop every little vegetable, hand grind spices, and wear ourselves out when mixing it all together. They cut down the time it takes to create tasty mixtures and puréed edible delights, and that’s something we can all agree is necessary in the kitchen.
Even so, not all food processors are created equal. Some are made to hold larger portions, while others include blenders and choppers in one appliance. Whether you’re looking for the best-in-kitchen-tech or the basics for your small space, we’ve taken a look at everything you might need to process, slice, grate and mix all kinds of food morning, noon, or night.
The KitchenAid 9 Cup Food Processor checks off all the things you'd ever need. Can it shred, slice, and dice? Check! Purée? Beautifully. Is it dishwasher-safe? Absolutely! Not only that, but it’s easy-to-use with a simple one-click, no-twist bowl assembly and only three-speed buttons – high, low, and pulse.
With a nine-cup bowl, you’re able to make a good helping size for the family or a party of friends. The slew of accessories – a multi-purpose blade, thin and medium slicing/shredding discs, thick slicing disc, and dough blade – makes any meal job easier to do. Take note that the feed tube has an additional small 'oil drizzle' opening where you can add liquids when making sauces or dressings.
The Ninja SS251 takes the hard work out of food preparation, and anything that makes kitchen prep easier is a win in our book. Outfitted with a smartTORQUE 1400-peak-watt power-dense motor, the Ninja SS251 isn’t going to stall or sputter on any job. Rather, it’ll power through crushing and chopping everything from vegetables to nuts making the finest mixtures like nut butters and smoothie bowls. And depending on the bowl that you use – as some come with lids – you can store your concoction in the fridge for later.
With the six Auto-iQ programs in place, you can choose specific tasks for the food processor like “smoothies” or “spreads” and the processor will automatically mix and pulse in a way that's best for that type of food. There is even a “dough” option for cookie, pizza, and bread-making pursuits. Just make sure you use the right blade for the right task.
Need to make a lot of salsa or dip for a big group of friends? This 14-cup Cuisinart Food Processor is up for the task. It has a massive 14-cup capacity and a 720-watt motor, making it a good item to have on hand for Thanksgiving meals or SuperBowl Sunday.
With an extra-large feed tube, you don’t need to pre-cut most vegetables or fruits. Just pop them in and let the stainless steel blades chop, shred, slice, purée, knead, or emulsify your ingredients. This little diddy also comes with a recipe book to inspire your inner cook to try new and fun dishes.
Sous chefs are second-in-command in a professional kitchen, and one of their main duties is to chop, dice, and prepare. So with a name like Breville Sous Chef 12 Cup Food Processor, you can feel pretty confident that this machine has your back.
Like other food processors, it has the capabilities to shred ingredients, chop vegetables, knead bread, and slice fruit, but it’s not the fact that it can do those things that make this food processor special – it’s how it does it. For one, there are three feed chutes – 5-inch, 2 ¾-inch, and 1 ½-inch – and an adjustable slicing disc that’s most impressive. The slicing disc has 24 settings so you can go from 3mm to 8mm.
To top it all off, this machine only has two buttons which makes using the 1000-watt appliance easy-peasy.
High-tech, fancy kitchen appliances can be as wonderful as they can be exhaustive. Sometimes you just want a simple set-up that can get you cooking in minutes -- and that’s what you’ll discover in this Hamilton Beach 12-cup Food Processor and Vegetable Chopper.
Though there are a few different parts that you’ll have to take apart and clean, you don’t have to worry about remembering how they fit together. The Stack & Snap feature doesn’t require twisting or locking; as the name implies, you just stack and snap.
Printed on the machine is a simple function guide that tells you which blade – one of which is reversible – to use for shredding, slicing, chopping, or pureeing so no need to keep the instruction book on hand. If you’re looking for simple at a decent price, you’ve found it in this Hamilton Beach food processor.
How to choose the best food processor
We have picked the food processors on our list for their versatility, power and ease of cleaning. However, there are a few things to consider when choosing the right one for you as the best option can come down to what you tend to cook and what storage space you have for it.
The smallest food processors on our list are 9-cup, which is plenty big enough for most recipes. If you do have room for slightly bigger and can see yourself doing a lot of batch prepping or mixing big bowls of dough, then it is a good idea to spec up for more space for ingredients.
S-blades for cutting and blending are standard on all food processors, but look for one with a range of other tools to suit your cooking style. An attachment for shredding is a must if you love making slaw or rostis and other meals that require lots of grated ingredients. Dough hooks and blades will allow you to make a quick and easy pastry or bread dough and look out for slicing tools that can thinly cut veggies.
Higher power usually means your food processor will find it easier chopping tougher ingredients, but don't be discouraged by lower wattage – some models have incredibly efficient motors and super sharp blades to make light work of tasks. Be mindful that higher power sometimes means a bigger motor which also means a heavier machine. This isn't a problem if it lives on the counter, but if you need to move your food processor, it might be best to check the weight.
What's the best food processor?
Though we're big fans of every food processor included in this buying guide, the KitchenAid 9 Cup Food Processor is our favorite overall. That said, if you want a food processor that doubles as a blender with preset processing options, the Ninja SS351 4-in-1 Blender and Food Processor is the way to go, especially since it's nearly the same price as the latter.