Ensuring that you have the right equipment in your kitchen is essential to the success of your business. Just like you are not going to make ice cream in a steamer, you are not going to make a smoothie in a chopper. Some kitchens may find that they need a food processor, a blender, and a chopper; however, maybe you can get by with just one! It all depends on what the equipment is being used for. Let’s review the differences to find what equipment is best for your kitchen!
A food processor will be your go-to for raw, hard-to-chop ingredients. With food processors or their optional attachments, an operator can slice, dice, grate, and julienne, as well as grind meat, puree vegetables, knead dough, whip, and more.
Horsepower is the first factor to consider when purchasing a food processor. More horsepower means more strength behind the blade during the initial burst, but the sustained force is usually less than the unit’s peak horsepower. Peak horsepower can vary among models, but the sustained horsepower is often very similar across the board. The difference in peak horsepower is likely to make very little difference in day-to-day use, so while horsepower is a good indicator of a unit’s potential, there are other characteristics that may play a bigger part in your decision.
If your kitchen will be processing large amounts of food, consider purchasing a continuous feed unit. These types of food processors allow the operator to load additional product while the machine continues to run — or continuously feed it — complete with effective safety features to protect the user.
- Best Feature: Strong, sharp blade easily cuts raw, hard-to-chop ingredients
- Use on: nuts, carrots, onions, etc.
- Recipe Ideas: nut butter, pesto, curry paste, hummus, homemade salad dressing
- Bonus: Many food processors work with attachments to slice, dice, grate, grind meat, puree vegetables, knead dough, and more!
How can you achieve the perfect texture for a sauce or soup? Use a food blender! Food blenders quickly puree ingredients into silky textures to create sauces, soups, dressings, beverages, and more. So whether you’re making creamy tomato soup or a delicious margarita, you can make it all with a food blender.
Options on food blenders allow an operator to not only puree but to grind and chop as well. Ideally, food blenders are used to blend softer foods and liquids but there are models available that can handle harder foods such as nuts or ice.
- Purpose: To combine ingredients that have a liquid base
- Good Foods to Use For soups, cocktails, smoothies, salsa, etc.
- Bonus: Operators are still able to chop and grind with a blender, but this is meant to be done with softer foods unless otherwise noted. Many commercial blenders can still chop and blend hard ingredients if done properly.
- Best Feature: Quickly cuts fruits, vegetables, and meats in uniform pieces
- Use On: onions, diced chicken, peppers, lemons, etc.
- Bonus: Want to give the same results every time? Food choppers give operators the option of changing out blade sets to get the size of cut desired. Want 1/4″ slices of onion on each burger? That’s quick and easy to do with a food chopper!
Hope has been a Content Specialist since November 2015, where she brings to the table years of experience in the food service industry in a variety of roles. Throughout her time with Central, Hope has focused on learning all things possible about everything from cooking equipment to concession and specialty products in order to empower operators with education on commercial equipment and supplies. Hope is a wife, new mom, avid crafter, and food lover (french fries please!).