Best Food Processors and Choppers of 2021

Models from Breville, Cuisinart, Magimix, Ninja, and Oster chop, slice, and shred their way to the top of CR's ratings

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Food processor with cilantro and tomatoes Photo: Getty Images

Whether you’re dicing celery, carrot, and onion for the perfect mirepoix or cutting in butter to your crust for pecan or apple pie, a food processor can prove a handy helper in the kitchen come cold weather.

“Even experienced home cooks who prefer to slice and dice by hand find plenty of uses for their food processor,” says Tara Casaregola, a CR engineer who oversees kitchen appliance testing. “Some models come with a special hook for kneading dough or one for spiralizing veggies into long, thin ‘noodles.’”

The full-sized food processors we test come in a variety of sizes and capacities, ranging from 5 cups to an impressive 16 cups; they’re too big for processing small volumes of foods, such as minced garlic or chopped herbs and nuts. Some food processors come with mini chopping bowl attachments to accommodate lighter loads, but if all you do is chop small batches, opt for a food chopper. They cost as little as $30—that’s about one-twentieth of the cost of a processor.

Some food processors and choppers are cutting the cord. Chargeable cordless choppers allow you to easily relocate the tool without wrangling the cord around ingredients, bowls, or attachments. “These choppers can be used wherever it’s convenient for your food prep, rather than you having to move close to an available outlet,” Casaregola says.

In the lab, we evaluate each model’s ability to chop almonds and onions uniformly, grate Parmesan cheese, and purée peas and carrots into a smooth mixture. We also measure noise, because while all models are noisy, some are much more grating than others. If the food processor comes with slicing attachments, we test the slicing blade using mushrooms and celery, and the shredding blade with cheddar.

Read on for reviews of seven top food processors and the top two food choppers from Consumer Reports’ tests, listed below in alphabetical order. Check our food processor and food chopper ratings and buying guide for more details.

CR’s take: The Breville Sous Chef BFP800XL is one of the few models that earns a rating of Very Good for puréeing. This guy’s loaded with accessories. The touch buttons are easy to wipe clean. This food processor is 18 inches high and weighs 19 pounds, factors to consider if you plan to lift it out of a cupboard or cabinet with each use. It’s also one of the heaviest food processors we’ve tested. Add the (included) accessory storage case, and you can see how this model will eat up storage space in addition to a chunk of money. The warranty is for one year, but the motor is covered for 25 years, the longest in our ratings. Available in brushed aluminum, red, and black.

CR’s take: Cuisinart introduced the food processor to Americans in the early 1970s, and it has been a recognized brand in the category ever since. The Cuisinart Custom 14 DFP-14BCNY garners an Excellent rating for chopping, meaning it consistently chopped onions and nuts into midsized pieces. And it’s one of the quietest models we’ve tested. It has a 14-cup capacity and stands almost 16 inches high. Many of the food processors we’ve evaluated operate with touch buttons, but this one has levers—one for on, the other for pulsing and off. The warranty covers three years; five for the motor. Available in brushed stainless, copper, and stainless mixed with black or white.

CR’s take: The Cuisinart Pro Custom 11 DLC-8SY earns a rating of Excellent for slicing, turning out veggies that are evenly sliced, but it’s only average when it comes to puréeing. It has an 11-cup capacity and lever controls, and it’s more compact than its brandmate above (weighing in at around 12 pounds and measuring 15 inches tall). There’s a three-year parts warranty, and the motor is covered for five years. Available in white.

CR’s take: The 500-watt KitchenAid KFP1318BM food processor aces our tests for chopping and shredding, and it’s one of the lower-priced options to boast a fairly large capacity, 13 cups. Of the big guys, it’s the lightest weight, tipping the scales at just 8.3 pounds (less than half the weight of the Breville and Magimix listed here). That makes it a compelling choice if you plan to store it in a cabinet and lift it out for each use. The warranty covers one year.

CR’s take: Robot-Coupe, the French company that developed the first food processor, took the technology of its commercial models and applied it to the high-performing Magimix 4200 XL for home cooks. The 12-cup food processor garners Very Good ratings in our chopping, slicing, shredding, and grating tests. The only test it doesn’t excel at is puréeing. (It wasn’t able to get peas perfectly smooth.) The hefty 950-watt machine weighs 17.5 pounds and comes with all the extras: mini chopping bowls, a dough blade, a shredding disc, a grating disc, a blending attachment for liquids, a whipping attachment, and a case to keep them organized. The warranty lasts three years for parts and 30 years for the motor. Available in chrome, black, white, cream, and red.

CR’s take: The Oster Versa Pro has a much smaller capacity than other food processors in this bunch, but if you’re not processing huge batches of hummus or shredding pounds of potatoes, this 5-cup model should suffice. This set also includes a blender jar, so you’re getting two appliances in one. The processor attachment delivers solid performance in several key tasks and is among the best at chopping, slicing, and shredding, earning an Excellent rating in these tests. The Oster Versa Pro weighs just over 6 pounds and is 15 inches tall. The warranty covers seven years. Available in black.

CR’s take: If you own a Vitamix blender, opting for the brand’s food processor attachment might make sense. It’s sold as a stand-alone item and works with the motor bases from the Vitamix Ascent blender line. We tested the Ascent A3500, and it’s one of the top-rated models in our blender ratings. The food processor bowl has a 12-cup capacity and comes with a slicing disc, a shredding disc, and a case for safe storage. Although it’s not the quietest processor, it aced our chopping and shredding tests, and earned a Very Good rating for slicing.

CR’s take: The 3-cup Cuisinart Mini Prep Plus DLC-2A chopper combines great value with solid performance. In our tests, it was particularly adept at chopping almonds and onions, and grating Parmesan cheese, though other choppers were better at puréeing. This model is ideal if you have limited counter space—it takes up about as much counter space as a postcard.

CR’s take: The Ninja Master Prep Professional QB1004 chopper has a slightly smaller 2.5-cup capacity but is far more versatile: Included in this set is a larger 5-cup processing bowl and a 6-cup blender jar. The chopper features a top-mounted motor that you push down to operate. It earns a Very Good rating for chopping, turning out nicely chopped veggies and nuts in our tests.

Headshot of Perry Santanachote, editor with the Home editorial team at Consumer Reports

Perry Santanachote

I cover the intersection of people, products, and sustainability, and try to provide humorous but useful advice for everyday living. I love to dive deep into how things work, and debunking myths might be my favorite pastime. But what I aim to be above all else is a guiding voice while you're shopping, telling you what's a value, what's a ripoff, and what's just right for you and your family.