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MiddleFingerMom

(25,163 posts)
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 03:55 PM Feb 2013

Can people make recs on blender vs food processor for me if I'm only going...

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... to have one? It will be VERY inexpensive. I don't bake, if that helps. I also prefer
chopping by hand when I cook.
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Not necessarily brand, but convenience/practicality/necessity of either/or.
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Thank you in advance.
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15 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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sinkingfeeling

(51,445 posts)
1. If you like to chop by hand, then go with a blender to make things like soups,
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 03:57 PM
Feb 2013

smoothies, and crushed ice. You could also look at getting both by buying used.

NRaleighLiberal

(60,014 posts)
2. our food processor gets used far more than our blender....
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 04:01 PM
Feb 2013

although our Ninja blender is our summer smoothie maker, that's about all it gets used for.

For making soups, we've gone to an inexpensive immersion blender.

Food processor gets used to make carrot salad, chop nuts, make pesto, make peanut butter, etc. We have a small cuisinart chopper type of blender that gets used quite often, esp. when making quantities of ginger or garlic for soups and all.

I find hand chopping really therapeutic, so we don't use any electric utensil nearly as often as we could.

Major Nikon

(36,827 posts)
3. If your interest is cooking and you want only one, get a food processor
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 04:18 PM
Feb 2013

A blender is really a drink processor. While there's certainly a lot of things you can do with a nice blender that involve cooking, the best use they get is for making drinks.

The one I have is the Cuisinart DLC-8S. You can pick them up used on flea-bay for about $60-70. They are built to last. The motor is strong. This is important. I don't recommend cheap ones.

Do you need a food processor? No. You can do pretty much everything they do by hand. Fuck that. I use a machine when I can. Work smarter, not harder. That's what I always say. I use mine for chopping and slicing vegetables, grating potatoes and cheese, putting a rough grind on meat, mixing batters, making dips and pesto. You can knead bread with them quite well although I use my stand mixer for that. I have a nice collection of knives and I do the smaller and more critical slicing with my knives, but the big jobs go to the food processor. If you are cooking just for yourself, it's of less value. You may not want to bother with it unless you are cooking most of your meals and want to automate some of the work. It may not be a good idea to buy one thinking you'll figure out a use for it.

MiddleFingerMom

(25,163 posts)
4. I plan mostly on using it for pureeing for cream soups and such, although...
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 04:23 PM
Feb 2013

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... I also want to chop cooked Italian sausage relatively finely for a chili base (instead
of ground beef). I've always used a blender successfully for that in the past.
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I've never had much luck with immersion blenders for pureeing soups.
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Major Nikon

(36,827 posts)
6. Immersion blender is the only way I puree soups
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 04:32 PM
Feb 2013

Some immersion blenders suck rather badly, but you don't have to spend a lot to get a decent one. I've had mine for at least 20 years and it's still going strong.

When I make chili con carne, I use my food processor to grind the meat. I like a very rough chop as opposed to hamburger. I use the food processor to just kind of break everything up into long stringy chunks of various sizes. When stewed, the connective tissue dissolves and the meat unstrings itself. You're left with big and small chunks of meat which is what I prefer.

MiddleFingerMom

(25,163 posts)
7. I call my chili "MFM's All-Flesh Chili".
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 04:56 PM
Feb 2013

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I use the ground Italian sausage as a base and add whatever meat leftovers that are on
hand in the fridge (chicken, pork, beef) -- diced about 1/2"-3/4".
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Viva_La_Revolution

(28,791 posts)
5. $15 immersion blender is all I ever use, blendwise
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 04:23 PM
Feb 2013

it's awesome for soups and jams and sauces.

I have a food processor, but I never use it. I prefer a few good knives, and my mixer, and hand kneading. <-- that's getting harder as I get older though I'll upgrade to a fancy new mixer when I can't anymore.

Warpy

(111,245 posts)
10. My one concession to age and rheumatoid arthritis
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 06:40 PM
Feb 2013

was finally getting the bottom of the line Kitchen Aid mixer from Wally's. I have never regretted the purchase, it's one of those things you never knew you needed until you got it. Bread still took a little hand work at the end, but I could manage a minute or two much better than the full 10 minutes it takes to turn soggy goo into an elastic bread dough.

Viva_La_Revolution

(28,791 posts)
11. I've got the old 'rocket' chrome kitchenaid from the 60's
Wed Feb 27, 2013, 04:18 PM
Feb 2013

runs like a champ, but whole wheat dough stresses it, and no dough hooks so I start it with the machine, and add the last by hand.

GoCubsGo

(32,079 posts)
8. It all depends on how you are going to use it.
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 05:10 PM
Feb 2013

I was given an immersion blender, which I use to puree soups and make smoothies. One can get them really cheap. I rarely use the blender any more. I use my food processor a lot more, as it's far more versatile. I make a lot of pesto (I am hooked on kale pesto right now), and I could never chop things that finely by hand. I use it for a lot of other things, too. I made some banana-Nutella "ice cream"this weekend, which is just frozen banana slices and Nutella pureed in the food processor. I have seen people on cooking shows use them to mix things like pizza dough and cake mixes, too. Food processors also have a grating-slicing wheel, which makes it a lot easier to shred cheese and veggies.

Warpy

(111,245 posts)
9. I find the blender will do most of what I want it to
Tue Feb 26, 2013, 06:38 PM
Feb 2013

and a good stick blender is even better. You can chop and puree things in a plastic baggie with a stick blender and save yourself another dish to wash and do smoothies right in the glass. The main advantage of a stick blender over a standing blender is that you aren't left transferring hot liquids back and forth when you need to puree a soup. I still use the standing blender for things like pureed tomatillos and hot chiles for the local cuisine, force of habit.

If you decide on the traditional blender with a jar, less is usually more. Go for the one with the simple control (high, low, pulse) over the one with 20 buttons that all basically do the same thing. Those buttons are a PIA to clean.

Nothing beats a food processor when it comes to making bread crumbs or cutting fat into flour for pastry, but those can be accomplished by other means. I actually use the blender more often.

cbayer

(146,218 posts)
12. I don't have either a big blender or a food processor, but I love my stick blender.
Wed Feb 27, 2013, 04:24 PM
Feb 2013

I use it for soups, sauces, smoothies, gravy, salad dressing and just about anything else one would use a regular blender for.

It's compact, easy to clean and requires very little electricity.

Like you, I like chopping by hand and I really love my knives.

Good luck.

 

guardian

(2,282 posts)
13. FYI
Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:18 PM
Feb 2013

buying factory refurbished off Ebay can save quite a bit of money. You might be able to step up to a brand/features and spend the same amount of money.

 

noamnety

(20,234 posts)
14. Another stick blender vote.
Thu Feb 28, 2013, 11:52 PM
Feb 2013

I use that almost daily.

Blender - almost never, except an occasional smoothie in a mason jar, which fits on my blender. If you go for a blender, check that a standard mason jar fits on it - very handy feature to blend straight in the jar.

Food processor - use it a few times a month, mainly for cole slaw, occasionally for grinding meat or making cheesecake filling kinds of things.

LancetChick

(272 posts)
15. I have all of the whizzing appliances...
Fri Mar 1, 2013, 12:54 PM
Mar 2013

A good blender, small and large food processors, and an immersion blender. My blender is the least used of all. It's the bomb for milkshakes and smoothies, and could be used for so much more (I've used it for more), but there are only two small parts that can be put in the dishwasher, and everything else has to be hand washed, so it only gets used in situations where it shines. Given the choice between either a blender or a food processor, I'd choose the food processor hands down. You can put the whole damn thing in the dishwasher, which is important to me. If I had a personal maid who cleaned everything for me, I'd still go with the food processor.

My large food processor and immersion blender are hands down my most used kitchen motor tools, with the small food processor coming in a close second, and the blender moseying along in last place.

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