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The purpose of this buying guide is to help you find the best food processor for your lifestyle.

Here are links to the complete guide:

If you are in the process of buying your very own food processor and have not made your final decision about which unit to get yet, we highly recommend that you go through this “How To Buy A Food Processor” buying guide. Rest assured, after reading this guide, you will have a clearer picture of the best suited food processor for your lifestyle.

In part 1 we briefly discussed how a food processor can benefit you in preparation of food. Here we will talk about the two main type of food processors.


How To Buy A Food Processor


There are two main categories of food processors: compact and full.

1. Compact Food Processor

Cuisinart DFP-3 Handy Prep Food Processor PicHaving a compact profile, this type is more often used every day compared to its larger counterpart. It can be positioned at a convenient place at your kitchen, allowing easy and handy access for small kitchen tasks. Its basic functions are definitely suitable for single people or for those with small families. Or those that just want a food processor for quick and easy jobs without having to pull out the large full size food processor. The Cuisinart 3-Cup DFP-3 Handy Prep (shown right) is one of the more popular compact food processors.

Advantages of a Compact Food Processor:

  • It is considered more versatile in making quick meals.
  • Because it has a small footprint, it only occupies very little room on your counter. It also does not demand too much storage space.
  • It does not require any special set-up before operation

Challenges you may have:

  • It generally has fewer features compared to full-sized food processors, sometimes it is difficult to find one that does more than just chop. But the functions it can do it generally can do nearly as well (sometimes better) than the full size food processor
  • The smaller bowl/capacity means working with fewer items at one time. Not taking portability into account, it is rare someone ever wished for a smaller food processor

Why you would want one:

Pretty much single folks, maybe a two roommate situation, where there is a need for many small food processing jobs. OR for the bigger house, if you find you have many small processing jobs that do not warrant pulling the big food processor out and you like having a small one out all the time. Jobs would not be too complicated so the compact food processor would function nicely here.

2. Full-Sized Food Processor

Cuisinart DFP-14 Food Processor PicOccasionally the 6cup to 7cup capacity is considered “standard” size, while “full” size tends to be much larger (9 cup, 12 cup, and higher). It is rare for the 6 cup or 7 cup range to meet anyone’s needs. In our experience that is usually the single person or couple (or two roommates) that end up entertaining quite a bit or just love to cook and experiment. So most of the time those looking for the full-sized food processor will tend to want at least a 8 cup or 9 cup capacity if not larger.

Full-sized food processor is the larger type of this kitchen device which people are more commonly familiar with. It has greater capacity and often come with several discs for more functions.

The Cuisinart DFP-14bcn 14-cup is one of the most popular and largest food processors on the market.

Advantages of the Full-Sized Food Processor:

  • It is usually equipped with feeding tube, allowing more convenience during the addition of ingredients to the preparation.
  • Its accessory discs and blades provide more variable operation, thus extending its functionality.
  • Since its bowl has a larger capacity, it permits processing of large batch of food items.

Challenges of Full-Sized Food Processor:

  • It needs a considerable amount of space on your counter but if you have a good kitchen size, this should not be a problem.
  • It requires longer set-up and cleaning time.
  • Higher price

Why you want one

You can probably already guess. You have the need to prepare large meals often which means you need larger and larger capacities. AND/OR your preparation is quite complicated and requires additional available functions. So as we mentioned, for smaller homes and single people that really love to cook, a 6-cup full size processor with many attachments is a good fit. For the larger homes, a larger size food processor (12-cup and up). And of course for the larger homes that love to cook, the larger size with many additional attachments.

Final Word On Sizing

Also consider that actual food capacity use will be maybe one cup less than the full capacity size. So for a 3-cup food processor your usable space may actually be only 2 cups. That being said, if you only require simple functionality for small jobs, the compacts of course are the way to go. Otherwise, the full size are better for more functionality and larger capacities.


Be on the lookout for Part 3 where we go over the different parts of a food processor!

Here are links to the complete guide:

Thank you for reading!

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