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A good food processor should be able to chop, shred, slice, and puree to your liking. To help you find such an appliance, we researched over 40 food processors before purchasing 12 of the most compelling models available today. We consulted with culinary professionals to create the ultimate testing challenge for our selection of processors and then put them each on the chopping block. Our testing team conducted over 30 side-by-side assessments, such as chopping onions, shredding cheese, slicing veggies, mixing dough, pureeing chickpeas, whipping up homemade mayonnaise, and even cleaning. We'll help you determine the best model for your needs, whether that be the best of the best or the best to fit your budget.
Fending off challengers since 2019 and once again earning our top overall performance, the Breville Sous Chef 16 Pro is easily our favorite food processor. This top-of-the-line kitchen appliance performed well across all of our tests, effortlessly slicing through produce and completing even the most challenging processing tasks. Its 1200-watt motor mixes dough, slices veggies, and shreds potatoes effortlessly. Out of our entire test fleet, this processor is also one of the most convenient models to use and one of the easiest to clean.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, such high performance also comes with one of our lineup's highest price tags. The Sous Chef 16 Pro is a phenomenal machine, and we highly recommend it for enthusiast chefs, but it can set you back quite a bit of money and take up a decent amount of valuable counter space. It's a fantastic option for an avid home chef or anyone who will use it frequently, but it can be a bit more machine than the casual cook may need or want. However, if you are searching for the crème de la crème when it comes to choppers, this is our top choice.
On the heels of our top food processor and leagues ahead of the rest of the competition, the Magimix Compact 3200 XL is an excellent food processor for a home chef. This do-it-all machine chopped, sliced, shredded, mixed, and pureed with ease, earning high marks across the board in our demanding tests. Its powerful motor and plethora of blades and accessories make this the perfect tool for the job. This device has plenty of power to churn through even the toughest recipes. Thanks to its convenient bowl-stacking design, this processor does triple duty before requiring you to wash and clean components.
Performance comes at a hefty price, and the Magimix commands a high price tag. That said, for the cooking enthusiast who appreciates what it has to offer, it's an excellent choice for a one-stop-shop food processing machine.
If you're not comfortable paying such a premium price tag for top-end performance, look no further than the Cuisinart Custom 14. This reliable kitchen appliance earns recognition for its superb performance across the bulk of our tests, all while providing outstanding value with a more reasonable price tag than the highest-end models we tested. It slices vegetables and fruits exceptionally evenly and purees velvety-smooth dips and spreads.
A drawback of this model is that the slicing and shredding blades aren't adjustable, meaning you'll need to purchase additional blades if you aren't happy with the size of the included ones. It also isn't quite as powerful at mixing denser doughs. Despite these knocks, this is the perfect option if you're seeking a great, all-around food processor without shredding your budget.
If you're shopping for a new food processor that won't take up a ton of room in your kitchen or your budget, then we highly recommend the Ninja Professional Food Processor. This appliance's performance in our tests thoroughly impressed us, especially given its bargain price tag. This model did a good job uniformly chopping veggies and incorporating ingredients when mixing dough. However, this appliance truly shined in the shredding and slicing tests, creating even slices and shreds without struggling or leaving large chunks of waste — a rarity for budget models.
This food processor sounded like it was working quite hard when tasked with mixing pizza dough, though. The dual-blade shape and bowl size also mean that making smaller quantities of things like homemade mayo can be difficult. Additionally, the dual-blade system can be harder to clean by hand. However, this is a great option for anyone looking for a compact food processor that won't break the bank.
If you want to spend the bare minimum and still get decent performance, then the Hamilton Beach 10-Cup is your best bet. This inexpensive model can hold its own for pureeing dips or chopping produce. Its shredding and slicing performance isn't too shabby either.
Where this model falls short is mixing. Mixing heavy dough with the weaker motor is not only a struggle, but it causes the entire unit to shake somewhat violently. Additionally, we experienced leaking during our water test. We recommend opting for another model if your recipes are mostly liquid ingredients. Despite these shortcomings, the Hamilton Beach 10-Cup is our top choice for those on a strict budget.
Bowl Size: 12-Cup | Motor: Wattage varies depending on the base
REASONS TO BUY
Great for pizza dough
Pro at pureeing
Slices delicate foods like tomato
REASONS TO AVOID
Requires Vitamix base unit
The Vitamix 12-Cup Attachment comes as an attachment, making it a perfect option for anyone who already owns a Vitamix base unit. It shines brightest while pureeing, slicing, and mixing dough, making it a great option for pizza lovers. Mix up your pizza crust and let it cool while you whip up some homemade sauce and efficiently slice up any toppings. While we had pizza on the mind during our testing of this model, that's not all it is good for. The mostly even slicing works wonders on easy-to-bruise fruit and vegetables, like tomatoes, and the stellar pureeing makes buttery smooth hummus and dips. Although it is still an investment, it is easy to clean but won't clean out your bank account.
The Vitamix 12-Cup is a great food processor, but note that you'll need to already own (or purchase) the Vitamix blender motor; this product is just an attachment. And while it's excellent at slicing and pro at pureeing — its chopping, shredding, and mixing (aside from pizza dough) capabilities are nothing to write home about. They get the job done but often require an extra pulse or two. The chopping and shredding also offer somewhat inconsistent sizes. That said, the Vitamix attachment is a great option for anyone who already owns a Vitamix blender and is seeking a well-rounded processor.
We've tested tens of different food processors since 2017. In this review, we subjected each of these devices to over 30 individual tests to rate their performance. The chopping, mixing, and pureeing tests made up the bulk of each processor's score, and we spent close to 200 hours testing and evaluating these food processors and mini-choppers side-by-side. We created numerous batches of fresh hummus, mixed up tons of pizza and pie crust dough, chopped dozens of onions and tomatoes, made mayonnaise from scratch, and shredded a silly amount of cheese. Don't worry; zero food went to waste during our testing. We then had a panel of judges rate the quality of the food produced by each food processor. Finally, we awarded points based on the ease of cleaning each product between tests. As always, GearLab purchased all of the products we tested at retail price. We do not accept any free evaluation models from manufacturers.
Our testing of food processors is divided across six rating metrics:
Chopping tests (20% of overall score weighting)
Mixing tests (20% weighting)
Pureeing tests (20% weighting)
Shredding tests (15% weighting)
Slicing tests (15% weighting)
Cleaning tests (10% weighting)
Our food processor testing team is comprised of veteran testers Austin Palmer, Hayley Thomas, Genaveve Bradshaw, and Hale Milano, who combined have tested and reviewed over two hundred kitchen appliances over the past several years. In addition to their expertise, we consulted with home chefs and bakers to get additional input and feedback on our testing and scoring process.
Analysis and Test Results
To compare each food processor's performance, we chose six weighted metrics to consider during our hands-on testing: chopping, shredding, slicing, mixing, pureeing, and ease of cleaning. We recommend focusing on the metrics that most closely match your intended use and selecting a machine that excels in those areas. These are multi-purpose appliances, and while we gave awards to the top overall performers, you may personally be better served by a model that excels at the tasks you most frequently do.
The Breville Sous Chef 16 Pro stands at the top in terms of performance and also in price. A close second in performance and price is the Magimix Compact 3200 XL. The next step down is the Cuisinart Custom 14 and the Vitamix 12-Cup Attachment retailing for significantly less. If you go the route of the Custom 14, you may need to purchase additional slicing and shredding discs if you aren't happy with the included options, as they aren't adjustable.
The Vitamix comes with a few slicing and shredding discs, but it is important to know you will need to already own or purchase separately a motor/base as the attachment is just the top portion. If these two options are still too pricey, you may want to consider the Hamilton Beach 10-Cup or Ninja Professional Food Processor. These appliances have their flaws but provide a great value, holding their own against other products that cost significantly more. The Hamilton Beach 10-Cup does just a bit better at chopping and pureeing, while the Ninja has the edge when it comes to slicing and shredding.
Chopping food is a quintessential task for these appliances and should be a standout capability of any worthy food processor. We compared each model's performance while chopping onions, carrots, and nuts and assessed the quality and consistency of the finished products. We also paid special attention to whether or not each model comes equipped with a pulse button and how precisely the button lets you control the machine.
When it comes to chopping, the Sous Chef by Breville found itself in the top tier. In particular, we were very impressed with the speed at which this appliance chops onions and the uniformity of the final result.
The Sous Chef also made short work of the almonds, chopping them up in seconds. Even better, it didn't over-chop or grind them into dust like many of the other processors did. While its "pulse" button starts and stops the blade quickly, other models like the Cuisinart Elite, Custom 14, and the Hamilton Beach 10-Cup start and stop with more immediacy. That said, none of the models measure up to the chopping power and uniformity of the Sous Chef.
Following the Breville, but not closely, in overall chopping performance are the Braun Tribute Collection, Magimix Compact 3200 XL, and the Hamilton Beach 10-Cup. The Hamilton Beach 10-Cup and Magimix Compact pulse buttons start and stop immediately with the press of the "pulse" button, while the Braun takes a measurable moment before the spinning seizes. The Braun does an exceptional job chopping the almonds, coming in just behind the Breville. It performs well at chopping onions and carrots but falls off slightly on the latter, leaving more unevenly sized pieces of the carrot than the 10-Cup. The Hamilton Beach 10-Cup, Braun, Magimix, and Pro Line produce comparable chopped onions, but the Breville beat them all.
The following models offer a somewhat average performance: Cuisinart Elite, Cuisinart Custom, Ninja Professional, and Vitamix 12-Cup Attachment. While Cuisinart models come in clutch with very responsive pulse buttons, they only deliver average results for chopping onions. However, these two models offer above-average performance chopping almonds, which we can't say for most options. The Ninja Professional takes a little longer to spin down when you release the pulse button, making precise control a bit more difficult. However, its onion and carrot chopping capabilities are impressive, mainly creating uniform pieces with only a few larger outliers.
While there is a charm in mixing your family pie crust recipe by hand with a wooden spoon, it sure is a lot easier to have a food processor do the work for you. In addition to pie crust, we made pizza dough and mayonnaise in each processor.
Once again, the Breville Sous Chef 16 Pro stands out as the top performer, as it successfully mixes up mayo and creates high-quality pie crust and pizza dough. This burly food processor shows no signs of struggle while mixing pizza dough but does take a little more time to complete with its smaller dough blade. During our testing, it took five pulses to achieve the desired pie crust consistency, but it was high-quality and looked fantastic when we rolled it out. The Magimix Compact performed equally well in our mixing test and barely edged out the Breville in the pie crust test; it was able to mix the dough with no shaking or poofs of flower and churned out perfect viscosity crust.
The Braun TributeCollection and Cuisinart Elemental 13-Cup closely follow the Sous Chef and Magimix. All three of these appliances make mayonnaise successfully, just about as well as the Sous Chef, but they vary a bit in their pizza and pie crust creation. The Braun vibrates like crazy when making pizza dough. When we added a second cup of flour, we thought it would vibrate right off the counter. The Elemental performs almost as well as the Breville, although it too shakes slightly.
Of the four top performers, the Magimix takes the cake, or in this case, the pie, when it comes to pie crust performance. The Breville, Elemental, and Braun fall slightly behind, offering an admirable above-average performance. Following these four, with overall average performances are the Black+Decker 8-Cup, Cuisinart Elite, and Ninja Professional. While none of these perform well across all three of our mixing tests, they do offer an above-average performance in at least one.
Two honorable mentions that crush the pizza crust test specifically, aside from our top performers overall, are the Cuisinart Custom 14 and the Vitamix Attachment. The Custom does not have a dough blade, making its performance that much more impressive. Both offer a decently quick and sufficient blend of the ingredients.
Moving on to pie crust, outside of the top mixing performers, we were very impressed with the Ninja Professional, which took roughly 10-15 pulses to blend all the ingredients sufficiently.
Like chopping and mixing, the pureeing metric accounts for a good portion of each product's final score. We conducted five separate tests with each food processor to rank and score performance, making tomato sauce, hummus, nut butter, and applesauce. We also considered leakage in this category, testing each processor by filling the bowl with water to the max fill line and turning it on full blast.
In a surprise upset, the Magimix Compact and Hamilton Beach 10-Cup merited top performances, unseating the winner of the previous two metrics, the Breville. According to our panel of tasters, the Magimix produced magically smooth and creamy hummus without breaking a sweat. The Hamilton and Vitamix Attachment also create superb nut butter; the Vitamix after three minutes, and the Hamilton 10-Cup in 10 minutes (though the top wobbled furiously during the process). The Cuisinart Custom took almost twice as long, and the final product was definitively inferior.
All of these models create perfect tomato sauce after about 30 seconds of pureeing, with the Custom receiving bonus points as it was the least messy out of every model that we tested. While the Magimix, 10-Cup, and the Custom also produced some of the highest-quality applesauce, the Vitamix Attachment fell short.
Of the average performers in the puree department as a whole, the Cuisinart Elite and Elemental whip up admirable hummus. These could render a mostly smooth (albeit a little grainy) product without much shaking or scooping required. The Oster may not receive a top score in pureeing, but it sure whips almonds into a smooth butter quickly compared to the others in our test suite.
There is a stark contrast in the leak test, with the Cuisinart Custom doing substantially better than both the Hamilton Beach 10-Cup and the Magimix. The Custom took about three and a quarter cups of water to reach its maximum fill line and didn't leak at all. The 10-Cup reached the maximum fill line with two and a half cups of water and promptly leaked water everywhere after the motor switched on, precluding it from claiming the premier spot in this metric. The Magimix begins to leak at the base once any liquid substance exceeds the blade mounting line.
Several models passed our leak test with zero leaks at all, including some highly rated models like the Breville, Braun, Cuisinart Custom 14, and Hamilton Beach Professional 14-Cup. Though it didn't leak, the Braun does not have a max fill line, so we filled it up a comparable amount to similarly sized models, about 50%.
Homemade macaroni and cheese or hash browns instantly become more appealing when you can simply set up your food processor rather than risking your fingertips on a sharp grater. We took the time to shred potatoes, carrots, and a large block of cheese to compare the performance of all the food processors in our lineup.
The Breville claims the top spot with its quality shredding performance. It does a fantastic job at shredding carrots, creating nice, crisp pieces that don't stick together, leaving only a small piece unshredded. It does similarly well with potatoes, only leaving two small slices behind. The Breville offers two shredding options with its disc: fine and medium. Both do a decent job at shredding the block of cheese, with only moderate amounts of cheese crumbles left unshredded.
Our runner-ups in this category are Braun Tribute Collection, Cuisinart Elemental 13-Cup, and the Ninja Professional. You have the option to choose between a fine or medium shredding size with both the Elemental and the Braun, but you are limited to a single size with the Ninja Professional. The Braun does the best overall, leaving behind only a few bits of cheese and producing shredded cheese with very few crumbles. The Elemental and the Ninja shredded all of the cheese but are slightly lower quality than the Braun.
The Braun offers a very high-quality potato shred. The Elemental and the Ninja also created uniformly shredded potatoes perfect for hash browns. However, there were a few irregularly cut pieces and some leftover chunks between the lid and the blade. The Elemental and the Braun both did average at shredding carrots, with the Elemental producing slightly more uniform pieces. The Ninja performed well with carrots, creating the cleanest and most uniformly cut pieces.
Our runner up food processor, the Magimix Compact, didn't score highly in our shredding test overall, but did have some standout performance in shredding carrots, tying with the Ninja in this category.
We sliced zucchini, tomatoes, and potatoes for this portion of our rigorous hands-on testing. We also considered how easy each device is to set up and how much control it offers regarding slice thickness. In terms of key processor capabilities, we consider slicing of equal importance to shredding.
Our leaders in the slicing metric are the Cuisinart Elite and the Vitamix Attachment.
The Cuisinart Elite has adjustable blades to set the slicing thickness and does a great job with delicate fruit and vegetables like tomatoes once dialed with the correct settings.
The runner-ups in this category are Breville Sous Chef, Cuisinart Custom, Hamilton Beach Professional, Magimix, and the Ninja Professional. The Breville's thickness is very easy to adjust when slicing, as the numbers correspond to millimeters. The Cuisinart Custom includes a four-millimeter disc for slicing, but other thickness discs are available for purchase. The Magimix cut through food with ease without much waste and included two different sized slicing options. These models did a great job creating even tomato slices, comparable to the Cuisinart Elite.
The Hamilton Beach Professional shines brightest while slicing tomatoes. Most of the options take time to understand how to use, but this model had the best first run of all the processors with almost no mangling due to inexperience. The Ninja Professional also only offers a single slice thickness setting but still does surprisingly well. The potatoes it produces are very uniform, and the zucchini and tomato slices are above average. The feed chute on this model is relatively small, so larger produce must be pre-cut to fit. This design leaves some messier slices with larger tomatoes or zucchini, but smaller items are cut very cleanly.
Our review process's final rating metric considers the amount of effort it takes to clean out each food processor once you're done using it. We washed each bowl, blade, and cover multiple times during our testing process, both in the dishwasher and by hand. We awarded points to the products that we found the fastest and easiest to clean, looking for models that made it easy to clean without accidentally getting cut by the blades or leaving leftover food behind to rot.
The Breville regained its top spot for this final metric with the easiest blade, bowl, and lid to clean in the whole group. The blade has a longer shaft that makes it a breeze to clean without accidentally slicing fingers, and there were very few nooks and crannies in the bowl or lid where food could get caught.
Our runner-ups are the KitchenAid 5-Cup and Vitamix 12-Cup. Though it was not stated that pieces of the KitchenAid are dishwasher safe, the blade is, and its simple design made it easy to clean. The Vitamix is dishwasher safe, and the gear is easily separated from the bowl for hand washing. The only tricky part about washing this model is the plunger. This section is much easier to clean with a bottle brush. Tied with the Vitamix, the Magimix Compact is top-rack dishwasher safe, and like the Vitamix, the blades have handles long enough to hold without cutting your fingers. The lack of sharp corners or crevices made cleaning efficient, though a bottle brush helps.
We believe this review can help you pick the perfect new food processor for your kitchen — whether you are a culinary enthusiast looking for a full-size workhorse appliance or seeking a mini-chopper to speed up prep and make it a little less mundane. There is something for everyone in this lineup of impressive options.
Genaveve Bradshaw, Austin Palmer, Hayley Thomas, and Hale Milano
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GearLab is founded on the principle of honest, objective, reviews. Our experts test thousands of products each year using thoughtful test plans that bring out key performance differences between competing products. And, to assure complete independence, we buy all the products we test ourselves. No cherry-picked units sent by manufacturers. No sponsored content. No ads. Just real, honest, side-by-side testing and comparison.