A food processor is one of the most popular kitchen appliances. Almost every household has a food processor, and many continue to purchase one.
However, despite their popularity, most people don’t know how to exploit their kitchen appliances to the fullest. In fact, after buying the appliance, most people put aside most of the blades (see 'Food Processor Blades' guide) and are only left with the standard one.
Some users are quite experienced in the use of the appliance, and they know all the tips and tricks. Still, other beginners and other curious users of a food processor are still wondering what the machine can do.
You have lots of uses for using a food processor, including grinding meat, making cauliflower rice, pie crust, almond butter, pulsing butter into flour, making ice cream, etc. so it's vital to choose one that suits your needs, as expalined here. Below are some of the ways you can use a food processor in your kitchen. Moreover, you should know how to keep your food processor clean once you're done.
How to Use A Food Processor
Making Homemade Nut Butter
A food processor comes in handy for making nut butter.
It won’t take you more than five minutes to make homemade nut butter. The nut butters are better compared to the ones you find in the supermarket because they don’t have preservatives.
And the best thing is, you don't need to be an expert to make it. You only need the machine, one ingredient, and about five minutes, and you are good to go. You'll love the texture of the butter as it can be thick, and you can put it in the fridge for a while to enhance the texture.
You can use your food processor to make a spoonful of peanut butter in the morning for breakfast or to satisfy your pre-lunch fits of hunger.
You can also use your food processor to make a cashew sauce.
To make nut butter:
- Put the peanuts in the work bowl.
- Pulse a few times and then push the button to keep the kitchen appliance running for 30 seconds. The mixture will become oily.
- Run the machine again until it turns into regular nut butter.
- Season the peanut butter using salt or sugar, depending on your taste.
Did you know that your food processor can save you the trouble of grinding meat manually?
Meat has a more rubbery texture and is much tougher than vegetables. Thus, mincing or cutting up meat can be a messy affair, especially for inexperienced individuals.
However, it doesn't matter if you are a novice or experienced at cutting or mincing meat if you have a food processor. All you have to do is toss the meat into the food processor and then pulse it. You will achieve the best results for whatever you are making with minimal mess and minimal effort.
Most food processors with a capacity of 8 cups and above can grind meat without any problems.
However, the smaller food processors may have a weaker motor, making it challenging for them to handle meat.
If you want to have an easy time cutting and mincing meat using a food processor, it would be best to cut it into small chunks and put it in the fridge until it is firm. It is much easier to grind them that way.
Cheese, Vegetables, and Fruits
If you have a food processor in your kitchen, it can come in handy for chopping onions, slicing, shredding, and grating cheese (see 'Best Food Processor for Grating Cheese' review), vegetables, and fruits.
As you use the food processor, make sure it has all the conditions necessary to function properly. For instance, ensure it is connected to the power source, it has the necessary extensions, competent command of the appliance, and space.
Note, only medium to large size food processors like 7 cup processors have the disc set to perform the tasks mentioned above. Mini food processors are not capable of doing these tasks as they don't have the necessary attachments. However, they still do a perfect job of chopping produce.
Different models of food processors come with different extensions for various purposes. As you purchase your food processor, ensure it has the right tools for the job.
Making Salads and Dressings
Making salads and dressings using a food processor is just bliss, especially with coleslaws, etc.
You don't need other extensions to use the processor for salads and dressings. You should use the food processor blades that come with the unit, and you'll get the job done. The fruits and the veggies will be cut down into small pieces within no time. You may not need to use a knife or a cutting board.
Dressings are easy to make using a food processor. You only need to put on the S-shaped blade, also known as the Sabatier blade. Then, put everything in and then pulse.
The dressing is fast and requires less monitoring as there isn't much to be concerned about. The process saves you a lot of time.
However, not all salads can be made faster using food processors. Sometimes, you may be better off using a knife with some ingredients. There are a few chances you might go wrong with making salads using a food processor.
If you want to bake a cake or bread, one of the most efficient tricks is getting it right on the dough. There are minimal chances of getting it wrong by making the dough using a food processor - check out the best food processors for pie crust.
All you require to make dough using a food processor includes electricity, water, flour, and about two minutes.
You should use a thin layer of cooking oil or cooking spray and then maintain a slow and even water input. Leave the rest to the machine to do the job.
Dealing with fibrous materials in fruits and vegetables like carrots doesn't require the motor to run continuously. On the other hand, making dough requires the motor to run continuously.
Ensure you don't use more than half the capacity of the appliance as the process can strain the motor. The dough is also pretty sticky, which can also strain the motor and cause it to shut down.
Making crumbs is one of the most straightforward uses of a food processor. You can use the kitchen appliance to crush oreo or dried bread into small particles.
If you want to make crumbs, you should use the S blade to crunch the food into fine bits. Throw in the crackers, cookies, or bread into the kitchen appliance and crunch the food for some time.
Making Homemade Hummus
You can use your food processor to make a hummus recipe.
Ensure that you get the ingredients right for the best results.
Is a Food Processor the Same as a Blender?
The two kitchen appliances look and function the same. However, they have some differences, such that it would be best to double check before deciding which one to buy.
The most significant difference between a food processor and a blender is in what they do.
A food processor is designed to perform a variety of food preparation tasks, while blenders are designed to combine (blend) wet and dry ingredients as we already explained in this post comparing a Nutribullet and a food processor. However, the Ninja Mega System rewiev we shared earlier combines a high-powered blender and a full-size food processor, thus making a strong case for blenders, or 2-in-1 appliances.
A food processor like this Cuisinart food processor will help you handle a multitude of tasks that would take you a long time to finish manually. Such tasks include dicing (see the best ones for dicing here), mixing dough, shredding vegetable, and other tasks that make cooking easy and time-saving.
Food processors have parts that include a base, a body, a set of removable blades, and a lid. They also contain speed and pulse controls. The type of blade to use and the speed depend on your recipe.
The body of a food processor is wide and spacious, making it possible to accommodate larger recipes. Additionally, the lid of the food processor contains a long feed chute that allows you to add more ingredients as you mix them.
Blenders come with one blade attachment. On the other hand, a food processor will come with an assortment of blade attachments. The different blades enable you to perform various tasks, including, shredding meat, chopping, slicing, etc.
Unlike a blender, you can fill a food processor up to the top and still function without a problem.
However, food processors are not the best option for processing liquid ingredients, which goes for high-end food processors as well. Wet materials can get stuck along the sides of the mixing bowl, which is out of reach of the blades.
Like a food processor, a blender also contains four parts: a motorized base, a pitcher, blades, and a lid.
The motorized base also contains controls which can include speed and mixing settings. Most blenders have a conical shape, with a handle and a spout for easy pouring of the content. The blender's lid comes with a removable plug that you can remove to enable you to add more ingredients as you blend. On a side note, your food processor may not turn on because you have not plugged it in.
Blenders are mostly used in the kitchen to puree vegetables and fruits for smoothies and soups. The conical shape of the kitchen appliance helps to direct the ingredients towards the blades. Unlike food processors, blenders are effective in dealing with liquid ingredients.
Most blenders, apart from high-powered ones, don't come with attachments that make food processors versatile. Ensure you double check the descriptions to see what tasks it can perform.
A food processor is an essential kitchen appliance that makes your cooking easy and fast. Above are some of the many ways that your blender can help you in the kitchen. The kitchen appliance comes with different blades that enhance its versatility.