Toasters, blenders, mixers, coffee makers, slow cookers, toaster ovens, waffle makers, juicers, bread makers, etc.
The list goes on and on.
There are a TON of kitchen appliances out there, and sometimes it’s hard to know which ones you really need to have as opposed to the ones that would just be neat to use every now and again.
I’m on the fence about purchasing a waffle maker for this very reason.
I would love to have one for the times when I am really craving a pumpkin spice waffle, but how often would I really use it?
Maybe if I owned one, I would make waffles a lot more than I think I would, but who knows?
Anyhow, we were supposed to be discussing the process for choosing and buying the best food processors for your kitchen. Back on topic.
If you’ve been on the fence about a getting a food processor, maybe I can shed a little light on the subject.
In my opinion, everyone should have one of these handy kitchen tools. Like me with the waffle maker, you may be asking yourself how often you would really use one.
Personally, I use mine once a week most of the time, and if you decide to invest in one, you probably would, too.
You may also be wondering why you can’t just use your blender for the same purposes for which you would need a food processor. The main reason here is twofold.
First, a blender has to have some liquid to move the various ingredients around to reach to allow the blades to reach all the pieces and get everything smooth and uniform.
Food processors don’t need any liquid, which is great considering there are plenty of things that could be done in this kitchen appliance that shouldn’t have any liquid.
Secondly, the shape of the blender doesn’t really lend itself well to the tasks at which a food processor excels. The flat bottom and wide-reaching blades ensures that all of the ingredients stay moving around to get evenly processed.
Use a Food Processor to create nourishing baby food right in your own home!
Another question you may have is the ways it can be used. The number one thing I use my processor for in this season of my life is making baby food.
When I had my first child, I remember seeing all this snazzy baby food makers and wondering why I would need one of this when I had an awesome food processor at home already.
I was right, and I have used mine to make various main courses and side dishes for all three of my children quickly and easily.
Don’t have children? No problem.
You can also make your own hummus, pesto, mayonnaise, and a number of other dips and spreads. If you don’t have an immersion blender, or even if you do and want to do the job more quickly, these are great for pureeing soups and sauces as well.
Hate chopping, shredding, slicing by hand?
Even if you don’t mind it, this would be a great tool for you to have simply because of the time you will save.
If you get a powerful enough model, these things can even need dough and potentially replace a stand mixer! These appliances are fabulous for making pasta and pie dough so much more quickly and with less mess than making them by hand. You can make your own bread crumbs (which would be perfect in our recipe for breaded beef fillets), cookie crumbs, and even nut butters.
I’d suggest looking at a model at 1000 watts such as the Cuisinart FP-14DC Elite Collection 14-Cup Model. The body on this one is solid die cast aluminum so no chincy plastic parts to scuff up or break here!
See all the ways you’ll be using your new food processor? Now that I’ve talked you in to making a purchase, the next question you probably have is how to choose one. There is a plethora of brands, and different models within those brands, from which to choose, and the sheer number might seem overwhelming.
Luckily, there are a few key things to look for when trying to decide.
As with all small kitchen appliances, the prices on this one vary quite a bit from brand to brand.
The lower end, less powerful brands like Hamilton Beach and Black and Decker are widely popular and cost significantly less than the higher end brands such as Cuisinart and KitchenAid.
The Black & Decker FP1600B 8-Cup Food Processor available at Amazon is nicely inexpensive.
Even within those brand names, the prices will vary based on capacity and the power of the motor.
If you think you’ll be using yours a good bit or plan on using it in heavy duty ways like making nut butters, I recommend going with a higher end, higher wattage model to avoid the motor burning out on you too quickly.
The next thing to think about is the capacity you will need. If you are a single person or part of a 2-3 person family, you probably won’t need a food processor bigger than a 3-cup size.
If you have a bigger family, or if you frequently cook for large groups of people, you’ll need at least a 6-cup size and maybe even a 9-cup or larger.
Personally, I love the Braun FP3020 12 Cup model shown below as I’m a sucker for anything well engineered and well made.
12 cups is a good size for the average family without being too little of capacity and without hogging up all of your counter or storage space.
The Braun also has 11 speeds unlike many food processors (most good ones have 3 and the cheaper ones only have a single speed) which allows it to take on some tasks that were once associated only with premium blenders such as the Vitamix 5200.
Here’s the thing,
The Braun is huge multitasker. Not only does it perform traditional duties as a food processor, it also functions as a juicer and chopper.
A few other things to look at are if additional tools come with it (disks for shredding and slicing are a must and a pushing tool for the feed shoot is nice, too), if a smaller bowl is included when purchasing a larger size (this is handy for chopping small amounts of nuts or herbs), and if the controls are a smooth-touch pad or if they are buttons (the touch pad is better for cleaning up afterwards- trust me on this!).
The Braun comes in your choice of
If you are thinking of getting a larger size, if it doesn’t come with a smaller cup, I would suggest purchasing an inexpensive model in a small size specifically for chopping nuts and herbs. It will take up a small amount of counter or cabinet space and is great for chopping these things quickly.
Well, hopefully I have given you some great pointers as far as what to consider when you are looking to purchase the best food processor for your kitchen.
Any of your local big box stores and chain retailers would be a great place to browse, and of course, there are tons of sites, such as Amazon, online to shop and and read reviews.
I do recommend reading any reviews you can find to help make the most informed decision, but I hope this article has helped, too.
About Ashley Martell
Ashley has enjoyed creative writing since she was six years old, when she wrote her first short story. She majored in English literature at the University of Montevallo. After years of professional work, she is now a stay-at-home mom of three, who uses her craft to write about her life and adventures in and out of the kitchen.