BLACK+DECKER 8-Cup Review
Pros: Inexpensive, better than average at mixing
Cons: Shreds and slices poorly, loud
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|Pros||Inexpensive, better than average at mixing||Great at pureeing and slicing||Great for shredding, slicing, good at chopping||Great at pureeing, good at chopping, inexpensive||Excellent price, good for slicing tomatoes|
|Cons||Shreds and slices poorly, loud||No adjustability of shredding or slicing||Little more difficult to clean||Leaky, not the best at mixing, loud||Generally inconsistent performance, leaves un-chopped pieces, subpar mixing capabilities|
|Bottom Line||A small model that is the least expensive and lowest scoring of the group||One of the best food processors you can get on a budget without sacrificing too much performance||Offering all-around excellent performance given its price tag, this is one of our favorites to anyone shopping for a bargain buy||For those trying to save some dough, this inexpensive model will get the job done, especially when it comes to pureeing and chopping||A well-priced 10 cup model with a lower-powered motor that yields varied results|
|Rating Categories||BLACK+DECKER 8-Cup||Cuisinart Custom 14||Professional||Hamilton Beach 10-Cup||Oster Total Prep 10...|
|Specs||BLACK+DECKER 8-Cup||Cuisinart Custom 14||Professional||Hamilton Beach 10-Cup||Oster Total Prep 10...|
|Bowl Size||8 cup||14 cup||9 cup||10 cup||10 cup|
|Measured Weight of Base||3 pounds, 2 ounces||12 pounds, 6 ounces||4 pounds, 8 ounces||3 pounds, 1 ounce||3 pounds, 6 ounces|
|Motor||450 Watt||720 Watt||850 Watt||450 Watt||500 Watt|
|Cord Storage||Underside Cord Wrap||None||External Cord Wrap||Internal||Internal|
|Feet||Suction Cups||Smooth Rubber||Suction Cups||Suction Cups||Suction Cups|
|Decibels at 3ft||95||61.5||80||96||92.3|
|Mini Bowl Blade||N/A||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|Accessory Storage Case||No||No||No||No||No|
|Slicing Disc||Non adjustable||Non adjustable||Non adjustable||Non adjustable||Non adjustable|
|Shredding Disc||Medium||Medium||Non adjustable||Medium||Non adjustable|
|Build in Bowl Scraper||No||No||No||Yes||No|
|French Fry Disc||No||No||No||No||No|
Our Analysis and Test Results
We chopped onions, carrots, and almonds with this model and evaluated the finished product on quality and consistency, as well as comparing the stopping time of the "Pulse" button between different models. The BLACK+DECKER scores average, which put it close to the back of the pack. It only had a slight pause between the release of the pulse button.
The BLACK+DECKER produced some of the worse onions of the group, with a huge range of sizes varying from practically minced to huge chunks. Its performance did substantially improve in our carrot test. The chop was a little on the larger side, but it was relatively even. It just took a few more pulses than some of the other models to reach a quality end result.
Quality dropped down again in our almond test, with the BLACK+DECKER tying with a handful of other models for the dubious honor of having the second-worst chopped nuts. It left a non-trivial amount of whole almonds and larger chunks while simultaneously producing a decent amount of pulverized almond dust. This is a direct contrast to the desired result of small, even pieces.
Our mixing test was the only metric where the BLACK+DECKER scored above average. We made pie crust, pizza dough, and mayonnaise from scratch. This model doesn't have a dough blade but still managed to make fine pizza dough. The motor sounded like it struggled a little bit, and when the ball of dough actually formed, it pressed on the lid very hard, actually bending it while it was rotating around. However, there appeared to be no negative repercussions.
The performance was similar when making pie crust, though it did take a little longer with this machine. The pie crust dough had a few dry spots when rolled out, lacking slightly behind higher scoring models. The BLACK&DECKER did fail at making mayonnaise in our test. The blade spins too high in the bowl to make the amount prescribed in our test recipe, so while this model could effectively make mayonnaise, you would need to make a very large batch at a time.
Its score dropped back down for this series of tests; this was based on the quality of hummus, applesauce, nut butter, and tomato sauce, as judged by our panel of tasters. We also did a leak test with the bowl filled to the maximum line with water. It produced the worst hummus of the group, creating hummus that was by far the coarsest in texture after two and a half minutes of pureeing. It took close to an additional five minutes of pureeing time before the hummus was even close to being as smooth of some of the other models. This model also did a subpar job at grinding nut butter, requiring periodic scrapes of a spatula to help it on its way. We did note that this model is exceptionally loud, measuring in at 92.5 dBA about 3' away. In addition, it took about 25 minutes to complete, so making nut butter is not a task to be undertaken lightly with this model.
Both applesauce and tomato sauce were slightly below average, leaving a decent number of chunky bits of tomato and an entire apple slice un-pureed. This model did leak, with water slowly dripping out and water splashing out through the lid seam occasionally.
Continuing its downward trend, the BLACK+DECKER performed worse at shredding than pureeing. We evaluated its shredding capabilities with cheese, potatoes, and carrots and compared the adjustability of shredding settings to the other models. It only offers a medium shred setting, and the feed tube was too small to fit a 2lb block of cheese, requiring us to slice it in half lengthwise. A large portion of the cheese crumbled rather than shredded, and there were copious amounts stuck in the space between the lid and the shredding disc. However, the 50% of the cheese that shredded properly was of acceptable quality, though the machine sounded like it might break throughout this.
The quality of shredded potatoes and carrots dropped significantly, with extremely inconsistently sized, flimsy shreds being produced. There were also large chunks of both foodstuffs remaining in the gap between lid and shredding disc.
The BLACK+DECKER did marginally better at slicing than shredding. The tests were practically identical to shredding, with the substitution of tomatoes and zucchini for cheese and carrots. It again has no adjustability for size, and the feed tube fit most of our tomatoes, though it was too small for the largest one. The sliced tomatoes weren't bad, ranking about average, and weren't completely mutilated or mangled.
Performance fell when it came to slicing potatoes or zucchini, creating slices that had a wide range in thickness with tapered cuts.
The bowl, lid, blades, and discs are all dishwasher safe, though for the top shelf only. The blade was relatively easy to clean by hand, though the smooth texture made it a little hard to hold onto when it was all soaped up. The bowl didn't have any particularly troublesome spots to clean, but its smaller size added a little difficulty to the process. The lid wasn't bad, though there is a small gap between the edge of the lid and where the feed tube intersects that can be quite difficult to get a sponge or brush, allowing some food scraps to be overlooked.
There are better value options out there, but this is the least expensive model that made the cut for our review, making it something to look at if you are on the tightest of budgets for your kitchen appliances.
All in all, the BLACK+DECKER is an inexpensive model that doesn't overly impress. It faltered at many tests, but it did shred, slice, and chop food — even if the quality was lacking. It might be an acceptable option for infrequent use, or if you know you are only going to be doing one of the tasks that this model didn't struggle with.
— David Wise and Austin Palmer