How to Use a Food Processor | Helpful Food Processor Instructions & Directions

How To Use A Food Processor

Using a food processor involves the following steps – attaching the bowl/jug to the base, choosing the appropriate blade, loading the bowl with food, covering the bowl with the lid, choosing the right setting, and turning the food processor on. Now you know how to use a food processor.

Food processors, like those made by Cuisinart and other manufacturers, can be used to chop, crush, knead, puree, emulsify, and whisk food material.

If you would like to learn more about how to work a food processor, refer to our detailed food processor manual below.

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1. Attach The Food Processor Bowl To The Base

Before the food processor can be used, the bowl must be firmly attached to the base. Most food processor bowls come with a max capacity of between 10 and 12 cups although some commercial models come with a capacity as high as 24 cups.

2. Choose And Install The Right Blade

The next step is to choose which blade you want to use. Depending upon the type of food being processed, some blades are better for the job than others.

The most commonly used blade is called an S-blade. It can be used for processing both dry and wet foods and its applications range from pureeing fruits and kneading bread to grinding meat. Other popular blade types include:

    • Juliana Blade: Used to chop vegetables and some fruits into strips
    • Slicing Blade: Great for producing evenly sized slices of fruits and vegetables
    • Dicing Blades: Perfect for dicing tomatoes, celery, cucumber, and other fruits/vegetables 
    • Whipping Disk Blade: Used to whisk eggs or cream
    • Dough Blade: Designed specifically for kneading dough. Dough blades are usually plastic.
    • Perforated Blade: Used for shredding tough foods like potatoes and root vegetables
  • Grating Blade: Designed specifically for grating cheese

When You’ve decided which blade you want to use, make sure it’s clean and attach it to the food processor. Make sure the blade is locked in place before turning it on as failure to do so can result in damages.

3. Load The Food Processor Bowl With Food

Now that both the bowl and blade have been put in place, it’s time to load the food processor with the food you want to process. How much food you can put into the bowl will depend upon the type of food being processed and the chosen blade. 

Unlike blenders, food processors can only manage a limited amount of liquid, which will be designated by a fill line on the bowl. When processing liquid heavy foods, never go above the fill line as doing so can cause a mess.

4. Choose The Setting

Once the food is loaded, the next step is to choose the appropriate setting. Which setting you select will depend upon the type of food you’re processing, which blade you’re using, and the make/model of your food processor.

When choosing the settings, don’t forget to use the Pulse function as needed. When selected, the Pulse function produces a vibration effect that helps to evenly disperse all food material throughout the bowl. This function can prove handy when grinding meat, making a nut butter, or processing dry foods. 

5. Press Start And Wait For Process To Finish

Now that the setting has been chosen, the only thing left to do is hit start. Most food processors do not come with a timer, meaning you’ll have to manually turn the appliance off. Avoid running the food processor for too long as it could strain the motor or over process your food. 

When the food has reached its desired consistency, turn the machine off before removing the bowl from the base. Once the processed food has been emptied from the bowl, the bowl can either be placed in the dishwasher or hand washed. Some blades are not dishwasher safe.

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What Should You Know About Using A food Processor

What is a food processor? A food processor is a countertop kitchen appliance that can be used to chop, crush, knead, puree, emulsify, grind, and whisk food. Although they may appear similar in design to a blender, there are many notable differences.

For starters, blenders are designed to process liquids like soups, smoothies, juices, and more. By contrast, food processors are not a good option for recipes that contain a large amount of liquid. Secondly, while blenders are built to blend, food processors can chop, shred, dice, and cut depending upon what blade is used.

Food processors handle dry foods like dough, bread, and nuts better than blenders. When it comes to crushing ice, blenders are the better choice.

The amount of power a food processor has varies by model and can be anywhere from 400 to 1500 watts. If you plan on processing thick or hearty food, you’re better off purchasing a model with a higher max wattage. 

The average food processor measures 8”x9”x15”, although larger models do exist. The average lifespan of a food processor is 5 years, however this can vary depending on the make/model and how the food processor is used. The more heavy-duty tasks a food processor is subjected to, the quicker it will wear out.

What Are The Stages Of Using A Food Processor?

Using a food processor can be broken down into three main steps:

  1. Attach the bowl to the processor base and choose which blade you want to use.
  2. Fill the bowl with whatever food you want to process, choose the appropriate setting, and press start.
  3. Wait for the process to finish, empty processed food into the right bowl or cup, and clean the bowl and blade.

Does The Food Processor Type Affect The Usage Stages?

No, the type of food processor doesn’t affect the usage stages. However, some food processors will come with a large number of blade attachments that will allow them to chop, dice, grind, and process a larger array of foods.

Some food processors will be limited in the amount of food they can process at once. If you want to process a large amount of food at once, a high wattage model is the best choice. Luckily, most of the best food processors are equipped with 1200 watts or more.

Is Using A Food Processor For Garlic Better Than An Immersion Blender?

Yes, using a food processor for garlic is better than using an immersion blender. When using a food processor, you won’t need to add water to fully mince or puree garlic cloves. Moreover, food processors come with blades that are specially designed to mince foods like garlic.

Although a blender can be used to mince garlic, when it comes to the question of food processor vs. immersion blender, the food processor is better suited for the job.

Is Using A Food Processor For Making Peanut Butter Better Than Using A Chopper?

Yes, using a food processor for making peanut butter is better than using a chopper. While both options work, food processors have several advantages, including:

  • Even Consistency: Food processors are able to achieve a much higher consistency than choppers due to its specialized blades. 
  • More Efficient: Food processors have larger bowls than choppers meaning they can process more peanut butter at once
  • Easier: Many food choppers are manual, meaning they require users to crank a handle to get the blade turning. Food processors are fully-automated meaning no effort is required on the part of the operator

Is A Commercial Food Processor Better Than A Manual Food Processor For Spinach Dip?

Yes, a commercial food processor is better than a manual food processor for spinach dip. Manual food processors require the operator to rotate a handle to spin the blade, a process which can be both time consuming and inefficient. 

Commercial food processors spin automatically without any energy input on the behalf of the operator. Moreover, commercial food processors can spin at much higher speeds than manual food processors, resulting in a much more even mix.

Of all types of food processors, commercial models equipped with 1700 watt or above engines are the most efficient home appliances for grinding, chopping, cutting, and kneading a large amount of food, spinach included.

How To Use A Food Processor For Other Uses Besides Mixing Vegetables

Food processors have many different uses besides mixing vegetables. They can be used to knead dough, turn fruits and vegetables into puree, grind meat, and much more.

To learn more about the uses of food processor, refer to the sections below. 

How To Use A Food Processor As A Coffee Grinder

To use a food processor as a coffee grinder, choose the S-blade and fill the processor bowl with the amount of coffee beans you would like to grind. Once full, turn the food processor on and make frequent use of the Pulser function to ensure an even grind.

When grinding coffee beans in a food processor, you must be careful not to grind the beans too finely. If you leave the processor on for too long, the beans can turn into a paste.

How To Use A Food Processor As A Cheese Grater

To use a food processor as a cheese grater, choose a shredding or grating blade, fill the processor bowl with cheese, and press start. If your food processor doesn’t have a shredding or grinding blade, one can be purchased online.

Don’t try to grate cheese using an S-blade as the results will be poor. Instead of evenly grated cheese, an S-blade will turn the cheese into mush.

How To Use A Food Processor As A Juicer

Food processors cannot be used as a juicer. Juicers extract juice from fruits and vegetables by separating liquid from solid matter. By contrast, food processors will mix everything it comes into contact with indiscriminately.

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