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Best food processor 2021: our top 10 for slicing and shredding

The best food processors from KitchenAid, Breville, Ninja, Cuisinart and more top brands

Best food processor
(Image credit: Cuisinart)

The best food processor can seriously speed up mealtimes with inserts to help you shred, slice, chop, blitz, and purée. Our top picks come from brands we known and love, including KitchenAid, Cuisinart, Breville, and Ninja. In fact, some of our top 10 best food processors have been reviewed hands-on by members of the Homes & Gardens team. 

Even though slicing your vegetables or grating your cheese from scratch can be quite satisfying, it's also a surefire way to hold up your food prep when you're in a hurry and making something tasty from scratch. Food processors can chop up onions, carrots and celery to make an evenly diced soffritto, and turn fresh avocado and red onion into delicious chunky guacamole. Some of our best food processor picks even come with added attachments to perfectly dice your fresh ingredients, or work cookie dough into a smooth and fluffy mixture. 

Be sure to pair your new food processor with one of the best blenders. They can't be used interchangeably, but some of our top picks do come with blending pitchers as optional attachments to get twice the value from your powerful food processor base. 

What is the best food processor in 2021? 

Our top overall pick for the best food processor in 2021 is the Ninja Professional 9-Cup Food Processor. It's capable and not too expensive, with a large capacity and smart blades designed to evenly slice everything in the bowl.

A notable mention goes to the KitchenAid Cordless 5 Cup Food Chopper, which wowed us in testing and can be taken on the go for barbecue season and use in busy kitchens. 

Best food processor 2021

Ninja® Professional 9-Cup Food ProcessorH&G gold badge

(Image credit: Ninja)

1. Ninja Professional 9-Cup Food Processor

The best food processor on the market right now

Specifications
Power: 850W
Capacity: 9 cups
Programs: Chop, puree, dough, disc, pulse
Cleaning: Dishwasher
Reasons to buy
+Not too expensive+Very powerful+Plenty of programs+Easy to clean
Reasons to avoid
-Only one food bowl

Ninja is one of our favorite brands for value and high-quality design. The Ninja Professional 9-Cup Food Processor is exemplary in this, with a range of intelligent programs and several attachments, all for under $100.

Why we love it

The Ninja Professional 9-Cup Food Processor has four Auto-IQ programs: Chop, Puree, Dough, and Disc, which is another way of saying you're using the shredding disc. This disc is reversible and can be used for slicing, too. 

The 9 cup capacity is standard among food processors and equally suitable for both large and small quantities. The side is marked with liter measurements which can be helpful for making sauces and adding ingredients as you go. 

Features

With a locking lid for safety and quad chopping blade that doesn't simply slice what's at the bottom of the bowl, we're impressed with the versatility and high quality considering the price. For those who want the best food processor without any blender attachments, it's our top pick.

Homes & Gardens rated 5 out of 5 stars

Cuisinart Elemental 13 Cup Food Processor

(Image credit: Cuisinart)

2. Cuisinart Elemental 13 Cup Food Processor

The best food processor for dicing

Specifications
Power: 550W
Capacity: 13 cups
Programs: High, low, pulse
Cleaning: Removable parts are dishwasher safe
Reasons to buy
+Dicing attachments+Mini work bowl+Easy to clean+Attachment kit
Reasons to avoid
-No multi-layer blades

If you take your cooking seriously, you'll know that sometimes dicing is just better than chopping for making tasty soups and the bases for stews. That's why we love the Cuisinart Elemental 13 Cup Food Processor and its dicing attachment. 

Why we love it

A powerful 550-watt motor keeps the Cuisinart Elemental 13 Cup Food Processor on top of sizeable tasks, which is a good thing given the large size of the bowl. There is also a mini 4.5-cup work bowl that makes cleaning easier when preparing smaller dishes. 

The dicing attachment pushes vegetables and cheese through a grid insert and then slices the ingredients into evenly-sized square shapes. 

Features

The dicing grid comes with a special tool to clean out the remaining ingredients without putting your fingers at risk. 

All removable parts are dishwasher-safe, and the attachments slot neatly into the storage case. 

Breville BFP660SIL Sous Chef

(Image credit: Breville)

3. Breville Sous Chef

The best premium food processor

Specifications
Power: 1000W
Capacity: 12 cups
Programs: On, Pulse
Cleaning: Hand-wash advised
Reasons to buy
+Huge range of attachments+Mighty motor+5-inch wide feed chute
Reasons to avoid
-Less gentle on soft foods

The Breville BFP660SIL Sous Chef has the standard 12-cup capacity that we see in many of the best food processors. 

Why we love it

It has a very powerful motor, and won't give you any trouble even when chopping larger and more dense items. The shredding disc is reversible, and the slicing disc is fully adjustable with 0.3mm to 8.0mm in size.

The controls are very intuitive, which means you'll be able to get started as soon as you take it out of the box. As with everything from Breville, it screams quality. 

Features

The chute is very wide, so you can turn food on its side and slice in different sizes. That's ideal for julienning and experimenting with food presentation. 

KitchenAid cordless 5 cup food chopperH&G gold badge

(Image credit: KitchenAid)

4. KitchenAid Cordless 5 Cup Food Chopper

The best cordless food processor out there

Specifications
Power: Lithium ion battery
Capacity: 5 cups
Programs: 1.77in
Cleaning: Dishwasher safe
Reasons to buy
+Perfect for indoor or outdoor use+Battery life is impressive+Easy to use and clean
Reasons to avoid
-Small capacity

 When we tried the KitchenAid Cordless 5 Cup Food Chopper, it truly converted us to the cordless lifestyle. Suddenly we could make sauces and dips while standing outside with the grill, and move around the kitchen with complete freedom. 

Why we love it

Whether you want to whip up a salsa while busy with the grill or simply don't have room for yet more cords in your kitchen, the KitchenAid Cordless 5 Cup Food Chopper is here to change the game.

We used this five cup food processor for blitzing up onions, carrots, tomato sauce, guacamole, and even to make a delicious aioli using the mayonnaise attachment. It impressed at every turn.

Features

The cup is made of dishwasher-safe plastic and you turn it on by simply twisting the lid into place and pressing the perfectly thumb-sized groove at the top. That makes it extra safe, but adding new ingredients means you'll need to unscrew and re-attach the lid. 

Homes & Gardens rated 4.5 out of 5 stars

Magic BulletH&G silver badge

(Image credit: Magic Bullet)

5. Magic Bullet Kitchen Express Food Processor

The best food processor for small kitchens

Specifications
Power: 250W
Capacity: 16 oz
Programs: On, Pulse
Cleaning: Dishwasher-safe
Reasons to buy
+Blender and food processor in one+Surprisingly powerful +Easy to assemble and clean
Reasons to avoid
-Lacks speed settings-Small capacity

It lacks the powerful motor of some of the best food processors in this guide, but the Magic Bullet Kitchen Express Food Processor really impressed us when we tried it out. 

Why we love it

For a start, the small size will slot right into any kitchen. It's also budget-friendly, just like the rest of Magic Bullet's range, without lacking strength. The Kitchen Express turns out thick and creamy smoothie bowls from frozen fruit and ice, using the blender cups attached. 

The star of the show is the food processor though. The disc is reversible and shreds thorough carrots and cucumber in seconds. The chopper is double-stacked, meaning it can work through a full bowl easily. 

Features

The chute is narrow, so we had to halve our cucumbers before inserting them. 

Dishwasher-safe parts are always a win, and all attachments are to-drawer safe. Because they're so compact, they actually fit, too. 

Homes & Gardens rated 4 out of 5 stars

Cuisinart 14-Cup Food Processor

(Image credit: Cuisinart)

6. Cuisinart 14-Cup Food Processor

The best large food processor

Specifications
Power: 720W
Capacity: 14 cups
Programs: On, Pulse
Cleaning: Dishwasher-safe parts
Reasons to buy
+Generous bowl size+Simple to operate+Slices, shreds, chops and mixes
Reasons to avoid
-Less smart functions

For those who want a sturdy workhorse in the kitchen, look no further than the Cuisinart 14-Cup Food Processor. It's got a slicing disc, shredding disc, and chopping/dough blade. 

Why we love it

What sets the Cuisinart 14-Cup Food Processor is its large capacity. If you need to shred industrial levels of cheese or make a large salsa all in one go, it's got five cups more than the industry standard. 

Features

What's more, its uncomplicated design means it doesn't take up more space in the kitchen than it needs to. You can buy other shredding and slicing discs as well as a whisk attachment separately. 

Ninja Mega Kitchen System

(Image credit: Ninja)

7. Ninja Mega Kitchen System

The best food processor blender combo

Specifications
Power: 1500W
Capacity: 8 cups
Programs: Dough, blend, crush, pulse
Cleaning: Dishwasher safe
Reasons to buy
+The ultimate multipurpose machine+Incredibly powerful+Personal and family-sized pitchers
Reasons to avoid
-Large space requirements

While it's got some pretty hefty size requirements, the Ninja Mega Kitchen System is a great investment for those who want a blender and food processor in one. It even does one better and includes a personal blender attachment for those morning smoothies, with two to-go cups.

Why we love it

The food processor bowl is 8 cups and the large blender is 72oz, perfect for soups and large drinks. You could even prep your soup ingredients in the food processor bowl and finish off in the pitcher.

Features

Included is a dough blade and two levels for larger portions. There's also a a chopping blade that simply slots into the top of the bowl.  

KitchenAid 9 Cup Food Processor

(Image credit: KitchenAid)

8. KitchenAid 9 Cup Food Processor

The best compact food processor

Specifications
Power: 240W
Capacity: 9 cups
Programs: Low, high, pulse
Cleaning: Dishwasher safe bowl, lid, pusher, blade and discs
Reasons to buy
+A mid-price option+Compact footprint for the capacity+Hinged locking lid
Reasons to avoid
-Less power than larger models

The KitchenAid 9-Cup Food Processor has a generous capacity, but the footprint is only 8 inches in diameter. That's compact enough to store on just about any kitchen counter, even if you have a crowd to cook for. 

Why we love it

Every part can be placed in the dishwasher, even the blade and discs, and there are attachments to puree, knead, shred, slice and more. 

The color range is attractive, and we enjoy how compact the base itself is when you consider the power level. 

Features

The hinged lid is safety-conscious and it can be detached for easier cleaning. As it's a KitchenAid it's guaranteed to complement the best stand mixer, and the color range means you can even pair it with other KitchenAids.  

Bella Pro Series 8-Cup Food Processor

(Image credit: Bella)

9. Bella Pro Series 8-Cup Food Processor

The best cheap food processor

Specifications
Power: 500W
Capacity: 8 cups
Programs: Low, high, pulse
Cleaning: Dishwasher-safe accessories
Reasons to buy
+Reversible slicing and shredding disc+Work bowl comes with measurement markings+Inexpensive
Reasons to avoid
-Only two attachments

The Bella Pro Series 8-Cup Food Processor is a great value pick for those looking for a cheap food processor. It's exclusive to Best Buy, where users attest to its powerful motor and value for money. 

Why we love it

The motor is 500 watts, which is more than some far pricier food processors in our roundup. It's also got a high and low speed setting, as well as a pulse option that will  come in handy for making salsa and sauces. 

Features

You're limited to one reversible slicing and shredding blade and one S blade. There's no dough hook, but for those who want the best food processor on a budget, look no further. 

Thermomix® TM6™H&G gold badge

(Image credit: Thermomix)

10. Thermomix TM6

The best smart food processor

Specifications
Power: 1300W
Capacity: 9.3 cups
Programs: Egg Boiler, Warm-Up, Fermentation, Thicken, Sous-Vide, Rice Cooker, Automatic Blending, Slow Cooking
Cleaning: Self-cleaning
Reasons to buy
+Cooks meals for you+Includes integrated scales+App with smart recipes included+Does so much more than chop
Reasons to avoid
-It's eye-wateringly expensive

The Thermomix TM6 is like no food processor we've ever tested before, but it's a truly multi-functional cooking appliance that not only chops veggies but cooks them too. 

Why we love it

You can sign up to the Cookidoo app that guides you through recipes designed to pair with the Thermomix, and the smart display will guide you through every step. 

Designed for busy households with a family lifestyle, the Thermomix TM6 will ensure that you get fresh cooked meals but without all the effort and prep time. 

Features

The attachments can do so much more than food processing, including steaming, slow cooking and sous vide. A bit overkill if you're just here for the best food processors, but a great option for keen chefs. 

What size food processor do you need?

best food processor kitchenaid

(Image credit: KitchenAid)

Our advice is to never buy something your kitchen can't accommodate. Yes, it's tempting to buy the largest and most impressive food processor out there, but if it won't fit onto crowded counters or in kitchen cupboards, you'll grow to resent it very quickly.

Not all food processors take a lot of space though. Both of the KitchenAid options in our guide have a small footprint, even though there's a 9-cup model that will cater to even large families. 

Often it's the motor found in the base of a food processor that makes it so space-consuming, so opting for a mighty Ninja food processor could be costly in terms of space, but worth it for the high-powered functions. 

What's the difference between a blender and food processor? 

If you've ever tried to make a smoothie in a food processor or chop veggies in a blender, you'll know they're very different machines. Because food processors have flatter bowls they're best suited to chopping dry ingredients, whereas the vertical design of a blender's pitcher means you'll have perfectly smooth drinks in seconds.

If you're trying to choose between one or other other, there's always the option of buying the best food processor blender combo in our guide, the Ninja Mega Kitchen System

How much should I spend on a food processor?

The best food processor doesn't have to cost much. In fact, the models in our guide start at around the $50 mark, which really isn't bad for a powerful kitchen appliance that will last you for years. As they get smarter though, food processors also get more expensive. Excluding the pricey Thermomix, the typical food processor could cost as much as $200 for a truly multi-functional and high-end model. 

Millie Fender
Millie Fender

Millie has been with the Homes and Gardens team since early 2021, bringing with her a love of cooking appliances and al fresco entertaining. She writes about stand mixers, blenders, and other small appliances, and loves putting barbecues and pizza ovens to the test. Millie thinks that the kitchen is the most important room in any home, but then, she is very biased.