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A good food processor makes kitchen prep and cooking an enjoyable experience. Consider a food processor your sous chef, helping you with the tasks that often slow you down.

Smaller models can chop, grind, and blend, making it a breeze to create salad dressings and salsas, while larger machines excel at shredding blocks of cheese or kneading bread dough.

On the flip side, lower quality machines can deflate even the most enthusiastic cook, as dull blades can mangle fresh produce and weak motors can’t process large volumes of food.

To find a food processor that fits your specific needs, it’s important to do your research before buying.

Keep reading for our picks of the 7 best food processors.

If you’re considering purchasing a new food processor, there are several factors to consider, including usage needs, size, capacity, weight, functions, cost, power, and ease of cleaning.

Usage needs

Before purchasing, you’ll want to evaluate what tasks you need your food processor to do.

For example, if you need help with small food prep chores, such as chopping onions or blending salsas, then a smaller, compact version might be a good fit.

In contrast, you’ll want to look for a larger machine if you have multiple mouths to feed and plan on making dishes such as slaws, salads, and pizzas.

Space or storage needs

Food processors come in many shapes and sizes. Compact versions are great for smaller spaces where countertop real estate and storage capacity are limited.

Capacity

Capacity is the amount the food processor holds. This is important, especially when you consider your usage needs.

Smaller food processors can hold 2–4 cups (273–946 mL) of food, while larger models can typically hold up to 16 cups (3.8 liters).

That means if you plan on chopping a bunch of Swiss chard or blending up a big batch of soup, a larger capacity model would be a better fit.

Weight

Bigger models often come with larger motors. This makes them great (usually) at performing hard tasks. A larger motor also often means a quiet motor.

The downside of a high performance motor, though, is weight.

Large motors can be heavy, which is important to keep in mind if having to lift a heavy food processor is a deal-breaker for you.

Functions

Functions are the bells and whistles that food processors offer, including modes and accessories.

Some models keep things simple and are equipped to handle a handful of the basic tasks, such as chopping, blending, and slicing.

In contrast, others offer special programs and/or accessories for kneading pizza dough, grinding meat, shredding cheese, or even blending soups.

Cost

The best food processor isn’t necessarily the most expensive one.

However, a really good one will cost somewhere between $50 and $150. Luckily, there are many food processors that fit within this price range.

Power

Measured in watts, the power of a food processor’s motor is another important factor to consider.

A small 250-watt motor should be able to handle chopping and grinding small amounts of herbs, vegetables, nuts, and seeds.

However, if you plan on processing large volumes of food or using your machine for tougher tasks such as kneading dough, you’ll want a stronger motor offering at least 600 watts.

Cleaning

Keeping your food processor clean can be a big chore. However, it’s an important one, because your machine can quickly become a breeding ground for bacteria.

To make your life easier, look for a machine with parts and pieces that are easy to reach and easy to clean. Some models even include parts that are dishwasher-safe.

How we chose

We selected the best food processors based on the following criteria:

  • Ease of use. Is the food processor easy to use?
  • Capacity. How much food can the food processor hold?
  • Features. What functions and accessories are included?
  • Customer reviews. What do actual users think of the food processor?
  • Vetting. All the products included have been vetted to ensure that they meet Healthline’s business standards.

A note on price

General price ranges with dollar signs ($–$$$$) are indicated below. One dollar sign means the product is rather affordable, whereas four dollar signs indicate a higher cost.

Generally, prices range from $40–$400, though this may vary depending on where you shop.

Pricing guide

  • $ = under $100
  • $$ = $101–$200
  • $$$ = $201–$300
  • $$$$ = over $300

Best overall

The Breville Sous Chef 12

  • Price: $$$
  • Power: 1,000-watt induction motor
  • Capacity: 12 cups (2.8 liters)
  • Programs/modes: On, Pulse
  • Included accessories: multiple feed chutes, adjustable slicing disc (with 24 settings), micro-serrated S-blade, dough blade

The Breville Sous Chef 12 food processor has both a large motor and a large capacity, which allow it to handle big jobs.

It excels at pureeing soups and mixing batters. Plus, it has an adjustable slicing disc perfect for cutting vegetables paper-thin (0.3 mm) — hello, potato gratin! — or into larger slices for crudite platters.

Three feed chutes make it possible to add foods of varying shapes and sizes, meaning the machine can handle both long and oddly shaped foods that might be challenging for other models.

This processor also includes a safety feature that stops the blade if the lid opens, which is great, especially if little hands are nearby.

Pros

  • easy to clean
  • adjustable slicing disk
  • large feed chute for bigger food items

Cons

  • short cord
  • not ideal for processing small amounts of food
  • manufacturer recommends hand-washing parts

Best affordable food processor

Hamilton Beach 10-Cup Food Processor with Bowl Scraper

  • Price: $
  • Power: 450 watts
  • Capacity: 10 cups (2.4 liters)
  • Programs/modes: Low, High, Pulse
  • Included accessories: large feed chute, S-blade, reversible slice/shred disc, bowl scraper or spiralizer

The Hamilton Beach 10-Cup Food Processor is an inexpensive food processor with good functionality.

While its motor is a bit on the small side and may not handle processing large loads of food well, it still gets rave reviews for its ability to handle basic day-to-day jobs, from shredding cheese to slicing vegetables.

This processor comes with a built-in bowl scraper, which means no more stopping midprocess to clean off the sides of the bowl. It’s also available with a spiralizer — for making zoodles or sweet potato noodles — instead of the scraper.

The food processor offers two speeds, along with a pulsing option. And cleaning is a breeze, because the bowl, lid, and blades are all dishwasher-safe.

However, some reviewers point out that the lid doesn’t create a perfect seal — so pulse liquids with caution.

Pros

  • affordable
  • option to purchase with bowl scraper or spiralizer attachment
  • many parts are dishwasher-safe

Cons

  • low wattage compared with other models
  • feed chute is on the small side
  • may not be ideal for pulsing liquids

Best premium food processor

The Breville Sous Chef 16 Pro

  • Price: $$$$
  • Power: 1,200-watt induction motor
  • Capacity: 16 cups (3.8 liters)
  • Programs/modes: On, Pulse, Pause, Timer
  • Included accessories: large feed chute, small and large processing bowls, 5 slicing disks (adjustable slicer, julienne, french fry, whisker, and reversible shredded), 3 blades (micro-serrated S-blade, mini blade, and dough blade), spatula, cleaning brush, storage box

The Breville Sous Chef 16 Pro is designed for the home cook who needs or wants serious help with cooking and food prep.

It comes with multiple accessories, including a smaller bowl that fits inside the larger processing bowl, allowing you to process both small and large quantities of food.

Plus, it’s equipped with a powerful motor that can handle heavy-duty jobs without stuttering.

Pros

  • two bowl sizes
  • numerous attachments, including 5 slicing disks and 3 blades
  • large feed chute
  • many attachments are dishwasher-safe

Cons

  • expensive
  • heavy (35 pounds / 15.9 kg)
  • takes up a large amount of counter space
  • bowl and lid aren’t dishwasher-safe

Best cordless food processor

KitchenAid Cordless 5 Cup Food Chopper

  • Price: $
  • Power: 220 volts
  • Capacity: 5 cups (1.2 liters)
  • Programs/modes: 2 speeds and pulse operation
  • Included accessories: battery charger, multipurpose stainless steel blade, whisk

If being able to use your food processor wherever you want is important to you, then choosing a cordless model, like this option from KitchenAid, is a good idea.

When the rechargeable lithium-ion battery is fully charged, the machine can “chop up to 40 onions,” according to the manufacturer.

With a 5-cup (1.2-liter) capacity, the food processor can handle small mixing, chopping, and pureeing jobs. It also comes with a whisk attachment, which means a batch of whipped cream is never far away.

As a bonus, the food processor is available in several colors, including Empire Red and Blue Velvet.

Pros

  • cordless
  • rechargeable battery with included charger
  • small and easy to store
  • great for small jobs
  • bowl, lid, and accessories are top-rack dishwasher-safe
  • available in multiple colors

Cons

  • needs to be recharged before each use
  • small capacity
  • fewer accessories than others on our list

Best food processor-blender combo

Ninja Professional Plus 3-in-1 Kitchen System with Auto-iQ

  • Price: $$
  • Power: 1,400 watts
  • Capacity: 8-cup (1.2-liter) processor bowl, 72-ounce (2-liter) blender, 24-ounce (709-mL) single-serve cups
  • Programs/modes: Low, Medium, High, Pulse, Chop, Dough, Smoothie, Ice Crush, Extract
  • Included accessories: Precision Processor Bowl, Blender Pitcher, 2 single-serve cups with spout lids, stacked blade, dough blade, chopping blade, Pro Extractor Blades for single-serve cups

Can’t decide between a new blender or food processor? With the Ninja Professional Plus 3-in-1 Kitchen System, you don’t have to choose.

The Ninja comes with a large 72-ounce (2-liter) blender pitcher, two single-serving blender cups, an 8-cup (1.2-liter) food processing bowl, and multiple blades.

Thanks to all these attachments, you can slice, chop, and dice nearly any food while also having the option to blend smoothies, soups, and nut butters. There’s even an ice crushing setting for all your frozen drink needs.

Finally, the machine stands out for its five Auto-iQ presets that are designed to perfectly blend smoothies, chop foods, and make dough with just the touch of a button.

Pros

  • Auto-iQ presets
  • includes blender and food processor attachments
  • many parts are dishwasher-safe

Cons

  • requires more storage space due to size and attachments
  • some reviewers complain of easily breakable plastic parts

Best large-capacity food processor

Cuisinart Elemental 13 Cup Food Processor with Dicing

  • Price: $$
  • Power: 550 watts
  • Capacity: 13-cup (3-liter) large bowl, 4.5-cup (1-liter) small bowl
  • Programs/modes: High, Low, Pulse
  • Included accessories: two workbowls, chopping/mixing blade, dough blade, small and large S-blades, reversible shredding disc, adjustable slicing disk, dicing disk

While it doesn’t offer as powerful of a motor as others on this list, the Cuisinart Elemental 13 Cup Food Processor is plenty capable of handling most day-to-day jobs in the kitchen.

In addition to multiple blades and disks, the machine comes with both a large and a small workbowl, allowing for greater versatility. As a bonus, the processor includes a handy storage case.

Pros

  • many parts are dishwasher-safe
  • storage container included
  • comes with a small and a large workbowl

Cons

  • lid can be challenging to use
  • dicing attachment has several negative reviews

Best compact food processor

Cuisinart Mini-Prep Plus 3 Cup Food Processor

  • Price: $
  • Power: 250 watts
  • Capacity: 3 cups (720 mL)
  • Programs/modes: Chop and Grind
  • Included accessories: stainless steel blade with sharp and blunt edges, spatula

Compact in size and weighing just over 2 pounds (1 kg), the Cuisinart Mini-Prep Plus 3 Cup Food Processor is great for tight spaces and small kitchen jobs.

You can easily tuck it into a cabinet and pull it out whenever you need help grinding spices and seeds or chopping herbs for garnishes.

It has two modes — chopping and grinding — and is simple to use. Plus, the lid and blade are easy to remove and wash.

Pros

  • dual-use blade for chopping and grinding
  • small capacity for quickly prepping small amounts of food
  • compact and lightweight

Cons

  • small motor can’t handle heavy-duty tasks
  • blade isn’t designed for precise cuts

Here’s a quick look at how our top picks compare:

Breville Sous Chef 12Hamilton Beach 10-CupBreville Sous Chef 16 ProKitchenAid Cordless 5-CupNinja Professional Plus 3-in-1Cuisinart Elemental 13-CupCuisinart Mini-Prep Plus 3-Cup
Power1,000 watts450 watts1,200 watts220 volts1,400 watts550 watts250 watts
Max capacity12 cups (2.8 liters)10 cups (2.4 liters)16 cups (3.8 liters)5 cups (1.2 liters)8 cups (1.2 liters)13 cups (3 liters)3 cups (720 mL)
Modes• On
• Pulse
• Low
• High
• Pulse
• On
• Pulse
• Pause
• Timer
• 2 speeds
• Pulse
• Low
• Medium
• High
• Pulse
• Chop
• Dough
• Smoothie
• Ice Crush
• Extract
• Low
• High
• Pulse
• Chop
• Grind
Blades• dough
• S-blade
S-blade• dough
• mini
• S-blade
multi-purpose • chopping
• dough
• Pro Extractor Blades
• stacked
• dough
• mixing
• large S-blade
• small S-blade
sharp and blunt-edged
Discsadjustable slicing (24 settings)reversible slice/shred• adjustable slicer
• french fry
• julienne
• reversible shred
• whisker
nonenone• slicing
• dicing
• shred
none
Other accessoriesmultiple feed chutes
• large feed chute
• bowl scraper or spiralizer
• large feed chute
• small and large bowls
• spatula
• cleaning brush
• storage box
• battery charger
• whisk
• 72-ounce (2-liter) blender pitcher
• two 24-ounce (709 mL) single-serve blending cups with lids
nonespatula

How do I know what size food processor I need?

The size of food processor you need depends on what you need your processor to be able to do.

If you envision using it for shredding large quantities of vegetables, pureeing batches of soup, or kneading bread dough, go with a 10-cup (2.4-liter) or larger processor.

However, if you plan on using your machine for smaller jobs, like making salad dressings or chopping herbs, a smaller capacity processor will work just fine.

What can I use a food processor for?

The better question might be “What can’t I use a food processor for?”

Simply stated, a food processor can act as your sous chef by prepping many of the ingredients and condiments for your meal.

Here are some examples of ways you can use a food processor:

  • grating carrots
  • slicing onions
  • chopping peppers
  • spiralizing zucchini
  • pureeing dips such as hummus
  • kneading dough
  • pulsing nuts into nut butter
  • blending ingredients for homemade granola bars

How does a food processor compare to a blender?

Most blenders are designed with a small blade at the bottom of a tall blending cup. The motor spins the blade, pulverizing what’s at the bottom, while also spinning the other ingredients to mix or blend them.

A food processor, on the other hand, has an S-shaped blade positioned at the center of the processor bowl. The blade’s shape allows the processor to perform a variety of food prep tasks, such as chopping and pureeing.

Food processors also come with several attachments, such as slicing disks, that thinly slice, julienne, or grate your ingredients.

In general, blenders are best for liquids, such as smoothies and soups. Food processors excel at prepping foods that are more solid, though they also work well for small amounts of liquids, such as salad dressings and dips.

Some food processors can be used to puree soups — just be sure to check the user manual beforehand.

How much is reasonable to spend on a food processor?

The amount you’ll spend on a food processor depends on your needs and budget.

A simple food processor without a multitude of functions and extra attachments can do a fine job, but if you want a machine that offers more power and versatility, you’ll have to graduate to a bigger — and usually more expensive — model.

Luckily, food processors are available at a wide range of price points.

A food processor is a handy kitchen tool that can help with some of the prep work that many home cooks find daunting or time consuming.

To find the one that best fits your needs, you’ll want to consider how you plan on using it, as well as your budget.

While it’s a bit of an investment, adding a food processor to your arsenal of kitchen equipment will make it even easier to create the meals you love.