food processor advice on buying
well i saved some food money and i want to buy a food processor. i didnt want to get one initially as we have so little space and i didnt want to buy one and then not ever use it, but now it seems a good idea as i want to carry on with raw. so my question is:
any tips on buying one? what things should it be able to do? i know Alissa said in her book that a cheap one will do, but what do i need to take into consideration?
Hi I have a Cuisinart 11 cup, but I think Alissa uses a black and decker, that you can buy at Kmart Walmart (all the marts) and they are about 40 or so.
You want one with a big enough opening to put in large fruits and veggies, so you don't have to cut them tiny to pop into the top, you want one with some attachements, like a shredder and slicer, (not necessary, but handy) and you want an easy clean up, so it should all pop apart easily, you also want one with a big enough bowl to hold your pate's and such 7 cup to 11 cup is ideal
the 2 cups are nice and small, but too small I think, and the 14 cups are great but only if making alot or in a commerical setting, otherwise they are just too big to use.
You also want one from a place that will take it back if it breaks, like Costsco will take things back for a whole year, so I buy most appliances there, that way I can really use the thing, wihtout worrying if the warrantee is up too quickly.
I bought a cheap one too, i forgot the brand, i'll check tonight, and I have been so amazed at how well it works! I totally love it - use it all the time...
anyway, I have had it only about 4 months, and lately when i make smoothies - liquid goes everywhere!!!!! it is so so so frustrating, as now i just don't use it. very sad. has anyone had this experience?
it's like there is a plastic piece that you insert in the top so liquid doesn't come out the chute thing - well that piece is in place - but liquid still goes everywhere!
I have the Oster brand. It is a blender with a food processor attachment. IT cost $40 at wal mart. I love this thing. i am really surprised how well it does. Very large top opening and easy to clean IMO.
I have an old two-cup Oscar that I bought in college (way back) that I use to mince herbs and make guac for one. I also have, and absolutely love a Cuisinart 14-cup - mostly because I have a very large family and I needed the capacity. I agree with RP that an 11-cup is ideal for most people.
All of the previously mentioned concerns should all be part of your selection process, but may I also add that the center column be resonably tall. If it is very short, then liquids may come out more easily. I know that Kitchen Aid makes one that has a slightly taller "tube column" (I don't know what to call that thing) in the middle.
But you know, I have a friend that bought the $34 Black and Decker at Walmart and she just loves it. It certainly does the job well for her.
I just got a Black and Decker at Target for about $50.00 and it works great!!!
This again? Oh, okay.
When I was at Alissa's in October being trained, she used and advocated using the Hamilton Beach food processor that sells at Target for $29.99. We were rather dumbfounded but she was adamant. That is what she uses -- it has a really strong motor and works terrifically!! You DO NOT need the big expensive ones. Cuisinart and the others don't do a better job. And ... if, at some point, you burn this one out making massive batches of date nut torte, what's $29.99? Just toss it and go get another.
I did it and I couldn't be happier. It's what I use in my raw food classes. Never has failed me.
Don't get the dual processor/blender. Don't get the teensy one.
Hamilton Beach - Target - $29.99.
I too got the black and decker 11 cup. I think it was $39 at walmart. works great...i do use the vitamix for most nut recipes that need a "creamy" texture-like frostings or pudding-the vitamix seem to work better for those things....
Two Different Animals
Food processor = one thing.
Blender (even a high-speed blender like VitaMixx) = a different thing.
You need both. Don't confuse them.
I know you know this Theresaann; I just didn't want the newbies confused.
Yes, several things that nobody has mentioned yet... and since I've sold several hundred food processors (and taken more than a few back), and own and regularly use 2 myself, I think I have a pretty good handle on what it actually takes to be happy with your purchase.
Originally Posted by lil fairy z girl
First factor is, what do you want to do with it? Food processors are essentially designed around two functions... 1) finely chopping dry to moist to wet ingredients with whirling knife blades and 2) slicing or shredding vegetables and fruits with whirling disks. A good one does the first task very well, and the second medium well.
People on average buy them expecting to use the second function a lot, but wind up using the first the most. The slice function is hard to control and has no finesse (I'd rather slice by hand), and the shred function is most useful for cheese. Though I do use it to shred apples for pie, and occasionally carrots to sprinkle over a salad.
But the chop finction, that is an entirely different matter. I use them constantly at home for making pates out of soaked sunflowers, blending coconut and dates and carob to make fudge balls, to chop carrots fine for making burgers, etc. The cheaper ones, like the Black&Decker, are fine for this if you don't do a lot at one time, although the better ones like KitchenAid give you more power, better blades, nicer design, etc. and can be used continuously for much longer periods of time. I have both a small high-end B&D (7 cup & 2 cup) and a large KichenAid (11 cup & 3 cup) and use them both constantly.
Which leads to a key point... what size? Too big a machine and you don't get the best chop, too small and you can quickly overtax the machine (although splitting the ingredients into two batches is viable for occasional use.) The optimum size seems to be what allows you to roughly half fill the container with whatever you do all the time. And the second mini chopper insert the better machines like the KA include give you a nice option for chopping up small quantities... like a cup of parsley. But if I could only have 1, I'd go with 11-12 cups capacity, as 4 - 8 cups of food is perfect for most things I make. (At the restaurant, 16 cups seems too small) :)
As far as brands go, KA is hands down best (until you get up to commercial machines like Hobart), and Cuisinart has unfortunately become about the worst. Although their name is synonymous with food processors, Cuisinart has seriously slipped in quality in this category, both in regards to design and manufacturing. Consumer's Union consistently ranks KA best, year after year. And I've noticed DiscountJuicers selling the $229 KA for $150. In the cheaper Target and Wal-Mart brands... B&D, Oster, Braun, and Hamilton Brach have all put out good ones, along with total dogs. So in this category it is most important that you check them out as much as you can personally, and buy from a store with good return policies, in case you can't stand how it works.
Hope this helps.
Love, love, love,
- Shivananda Deva
thank you to all of you for your wisdom in food processor knowledge. i am going to make a note of all your comments and things to consider when checking out the ones available to buy.
thank you all,
My name is Linda, from San Francisco Bay Area. This is my first post, although I've been reading most of the posts here in the last couple of weeks, since I discovered this wonderful forum.
I'm very new to raw food. I have Vitamix 5000 and Kitchenaid Chef's Chopper http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...lance&n=284507. Do you think I should still get the food process? I mainly want to make desserts, and for 1 person most of the time. Thank you so much.
I was planning to buy a cuisinart food processor/blender combo this weekend as a starting out set -- at $80 for the two I found it very reasonable. Should I do so, what problems should I expect to encounter, since your position is that cuisinart is the worst brand available in the higher end category of food processors (or maybe you mean of all?). The blender is 500 watts and for now, just planning to use it for smoothies and dressings pretty much. The food processor I was planning to use for pates, to make crusts for desserts, maybe for salsas, slaws, or other veg. type salads.
Strawberry Fields - I know you didn't ask me, but I have found that the combinations are not good at all. It's better to get the $29.99 Hamilton Beach food processor (that Alissa uses) and then get a blender with the strongest motor possible (not an Oster!!).
Linda, you definitely still need a food processor. Again -- the one I mentioned above is great!!! Mine's still going strong after using it for really heavy batches of recipes in teaching classes.
Do you have Alissa's book yet? She explains in the equipment section why you need both a blender and a food processor. It's really simple - they do two different things.
How great that you have a Vitamix, by the way!!
The Hamilton Beach Big Mouth food processor. It's the best I've ever had and I have owned quite a few. It out beats the Cuisnart (sp?) by a long shot.
These are at Wall Mart for about 30.00. I just love mine.