Putting food processors through their paces
A food processor is a versatile kitchen appliance that can help make light work of time consuming cooking tasks. Need to chop, slice, dice, shred, grate, zest, mash, puree, mix, knead, grind or emulsify ingredients for that last minute meal you're preparing? This is where a food processor can really shine and help you get that meal out in no time. You can even buy one with a citrus press or juice extractor for juicing or a blender attachment for blending smoothies and crushing ice.
Our home economist Fiona Mair has put many food processors through their paces and can tell you which are easiest to use and which will get the job done best.
Our expert testers
Our home economist Fiona Mair knows her way around a kitchen and has endless knowledge about kitchen appliances. With 30 years of experience, she's seen lots of new technology enter the kitchen space. Fiona is a whiz in the kitchen and knows how to test any appliance to see if it's worthy of a spot in your home.
How we choose what we test
With such a wide a range available, what makes us choose one food processor to test over another? As with most of our product testing, our aim is to test the most popular models on the market and what you're most likely to see in the retailers.
We survey manufacturers to find out about their range of models, we check market sales information and we also check for any member requests to test specific models. From this information we put together a final list that goes to our buyers. They then head out to the retailers and buy each product, just as a normal consumer would. We do this so we can be sure they're the same as any consumer would find them and not 'tweaked' in any way.
How we test
We test food processors of varying capacities. Larger, full-size food processors are capable of many more tasks than compact mini food processors (also known as 'food choppers').
Fiona tests large food processors by:
- slicing carrots using the coarse slicing blade
- chopping breadcrumbs using the processor blade
- shredding cheese using the coarse grating/shredding blade
- kneading shortcrust pastry using the dough blade
- emulsifying mayonnaise using the whisk attachment or processor blade.
For models that come with a blender attachment she blends potato and leek soup.
When we test mini food processors we:
- make Thai red curry paste
- make pesto
- emulsify mayonnaise
- chop breadcrumbs.
Ease of use
Fiona assesses how easy it is to use the controls, read the labels, lock and release the bowls and attachments, store the unit with accessories, and clean. She also considers the stability of the unit when in use.
Test criteria explained
The overall score is made up of performance (60%) and ease of use (40%).
Our test lab
We maintain a kitchen lab that is up to date with the latest reference machines and calibrated measurement tools so our testers can bring you accurate and thorough results.
Ready to buy?
Take a look at our latest test results in our food processor reviews, or find out more about their features and what to look for in our food processors buying guide.