Vitamix 12-Cup Attachment Review
Pros: Great for pizza dough, pureeing perfection, easy to clean, mostly even slicing, little to no leakage
Cons: Not great for applesauce, average chopping and shredding
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Vitamix 12-Cup Attachment
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|Pros||Great for pizza dough, pureeing perfection, easy to clean, mostly even slicing, little to no leakage||Great at pureeing and slicing||Great for shredding, slicing, good at chopping||Great at pureeing, good at chopping, inexpensive||Inexpensive, better than average at mixing|
|Cons||Not great for applesauce, average chopping and shredding||No adjustability of shredding or slicing||Little more difficult to clean||Leaky, not the best at mixing, loud||Shreds and slices poorly, loud|
|Bottom Line||A food processor especially great for pizza, that gets most jobs done at a reasonable price||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 small model that is the least expensive and lowest scoring of the group|
|Rating Categories||Vitamix 12-Cup Atta...||Cuisinart Custom 14||Ninja Professional||Hamilton Beach 10-Cup||Black+Decker 8-Cup|
|Specs||Vitamix 12-Cup Atta...||Cuisinart Custom 14||Ninja Professional||Hamilton Beach 10-Cup||Black+Decker 8-Cup|
|Bowl Size||12 cup||14 cup||9 cup||10 cup||8 cup|
H: 12.8" (no base)
H: 19.6" (on tested base)
|Measured Weight of Base||8 pounds, 12 ounces. Varies, tested with Vitamix A2300 blender base||12 pounds, 6 ounces||4 pounds, 8 ounces||3 pounds, 1 ounce||3 pounds, 2 ounces|
|Motor||Varies, tested with Vitamix A2300 blender base||720 Watt||850 Watt||450 Watt||450 Watt|
|Speed Control||Pulse/(On/Off), varies, tested with Vitamix A2300 blender base||On/(Pulse/Off)||Chop/Puree/Dough/Disc/Low/High/Pulse||High/Low/Pulse/Off||On/(Pulse/Off)|
|Cord Storage||Underside cord wrap; varies, tested with Vitamix A2300 blender base||None||External Cord Wrap||Internal||Underside Cord Wrap|
|Feet||Varies, tested with Vitamix A2300 blender base||Smooth Rubber||Suction Cups||Suction Cups||Suction Cups|
|Decibels at 3ft||80.5, varies, tested with Vitamix A2300 blender base||61.5||80||96||95|
|Mini Bowl Blade||N/A||Yes||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|Accessory Storage Case||Yes||No||No||No||No|
|Slicing Disc||2 discs large and small; Non adjustable||Non adjustable||Non adjustable||Non adjustable||Non adjustable|
|Shredding Disc||2 discs large and small; Non adjustable||Medium||Non adjustable||Medium||Medium|
|Build in Bowl Scraper||No||No||No||Yes||No|
|French Fry Disc||No||No||No||No||No|
Our Analysis and Test Results
While the Vitamix 12-cup leaves a little to be desired in the chopping realm, it holds up to most of its competitors. During our testing, we chopped a plethora of different foods, from watery onions to dry nuts. We paid special attention to the evenness and preciseness of the chop.
The pulse button starts a little slow when compared to some of the Vitamix's competitors. It also stops slowly when working with a large amount of something or with more dense foods. The first vegetable we attempted to chop was a juicy onion. The Vitamix performs very well here. It takes roughly four short pulses to completely chop the onion; however, the chop is more of a mince. The results are crisp and unmutilated, but the size of the pieces varies a bit from minced to bite-size.
Next, we tried chopping up some carrots. This model offers a decent chop of harder veggies like this after three short pulses. After six pulses, the carrot is mostly chopped, and the size is mostly uniform, but not completely. The blades are sharp and precise, so you don't have to worry much about turning your carrots into mush and can continue pulsing if you'd prefer not to have any larger pieces.
The almonds rendered a different result. After six pulses, there is a lot of nut dust, and the almonds are chopped rather unevenly. However, it does a great job of ensuring that every nut is chopped and no whole nuts are left behind, which is an issue we experienced with many other food processors.
During our mixing test, we tried making pizza dough, mayonnaise, and pie crust. When compared to other options in our test suite, its performance is average — it gets the job done.
For our first test, we tried mixing pizza dough. This is truly where the Vitamix 12-cup shines. It handles like an absolute champ. The general design of the blade and shaft allow for everything to be mixed to completion without any sticky bits hanging on the sides or top of the bowl, so much so that you barely even have to wash the top. The pie crust, like the pizza dough, mixes well and provides great elasticity.
Trying to make mayonnaise, on the other hand, was a different story. It feels as though the blades do not whip fast enough to fluff up the egg, although the lemon and egg do mix quite nicely.
We whipped up some hummus, nut butter, tomato sauce, and applesauce during our pureeing testing. It works very well across the board, with the exception of applesauce. We also tested how leakproof each processor is through a water test. The rubber seal and tightly fitting lid of the Vitamix results in a completely leak-free appliance.
The Vitamix 12-Cup stops automatically after two and a half minutes, at which point your hummus will be practically done. It provides a nice, smooth consistency, just shy of what you might purchase in a grocery store.
Nut butter can be difficult for food processors to blend successfully, but this model knocked it out of the park. After roughly six minutes, the Vitamix 12-Cup produces a smooth and creamy butter, with almost no extra splatter on the walls and lid. You are also left with no chunks or unpureed pieces.
Tomato sauce is whipped up so quickly that you almost have no excuse for buying premade sauce. After 20 seconds, the garlic and tomato chunks are blended together as one. Unfortunately, we can't say the same for our applesauce test, which requires a lot more time to produce a smooth product.
Much like the mixing and chopping, the Vitamix gets the job done but isn't anything to write home about. The two discs offer two shredding size options, both of which we happily shredded cheese, potatoes, and carrots with.
This model performs pretty well in the cheese potato department but leaves plenty of room for improvement. The shred is somewhat uniform but leaves some crumbly bits of cheese smooshed to the walls and lid, while the potatoes are left quite wet. On the other hand, carrots are easily chopped, mostly uniform, and left nice and crisp.
This is where the Vitamix 12-Cup starts to impress us. Similar to the shredding discs, it comes with a large and small slicing disc, both of which perform admirably. During this test, we slice up tomatoes, potatoes, and zucchinis.
All three of these veggies sliced with ease, but we were especially impressed with the tomato. As you can imagine, slicing delicate fruits or vegetables can turn into a sloppy mutilated mess. The Vitamix 12-Cup slices soft tomatoes in uniform and with not smoosh to speak of.
This model also slices potatoes and zucchinis well, but they both come out a little tapered. This isn't too big of a deal, but it is worth noting. We especially noticed tapering once we started using the plunger, as there is simply not as much control.
Generally speaking, the Vitamix 12-Cup is easy to clean. The whole thing, besides the base, is BPA Free & Dishwasher Safe.
The blade is very easy to get a grip on and clean without much fear of getting cut while adjusting your grip, and the bowl separates from everything else, so there are no hard-to-reach spots unless you have especially large hands. The plunger has a small opening which can be difficult to get into, so a bottle brush will make the whole process a lot easier.
The Vitamix 12-Cup is a great value, plain and simple. While it doesn't blow us away with its performance across the board, it gets the job done with a few extra pulses. It performs in line with most high-performing options, except for those that cost nearly three times as much. If money is no object and you want the best of the best, you may want to check out some of our higher-performing options, but if you are not looking to spend your rent money on a kitchen appliance this month, the Vitamix 12-Cup is a great option.
If you like to make pizza from scratch, then the Vitamix 12-Cup is the right choice for you. While it struggles with mixing foods like mayonnaise, it mixes dough to perfection, purees like a boss, and slices well too. There are no categories where it truly fails, although it may require an additional pulse or two while chopping. Overall this food processor is a great option for anyone looking for a well-rounded appliance at a fair price.
— Hayley Thomas
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