Food processors might just be the most annoying kitchen appliances on earth. They are bulky to store, a beast to clean, and feature miscellaneous ways to injure yourself when it comes to cleaning and storing the blades. Even so, these are only issues if you can even figure out how to lock the bowl onto the base, and the lid onto the bowl.
I find my food processor annoying enough that I typically avoid recipes that require it. I know I’m not alone, because KitchenAid used consumers’ collective gripes to inform the design and operation of its brand new 7-cup food processor. They’ve made the appliance especially user friendly, and easy to use, store, and clean. These are the formerly terrible aspects that have been remedied by KitchenAid...
What’s new on the KitchenAid 7-cup food processor
Assembly: I’ve wrestled with a food processor for upwards of 30 minutes trying to get all the pieces in place so that the thing will just turn on. To avoid the headache that is the twist-and-lock mechanism, KitchenAid’s processor features twist-free bowl assembly: the bowl simply clicks into place and lifts off without any finicky sliding or locking. The trade-off is that you need to take the bowl off the track to shake food off the sides.
Cleaning: Except for the bottom motor, every part of the appliance is dishwasher safe, so you’ll never have to hand wash anything, from the lid to the blades to the bowl. Additionally, the lid’s interior rim lacks the thin, nonsensical ridge where food notoriously gets trapped forever. In its place is a well-designed thread that clamps shut without issue and is very easily cleaned.
Lid: The lid on the KitchenAid 7-cup is latched and has a flip top. That means you won't have to twist and lock it into place (yay!) but also that you can leave the top propped open (and off dirty countertops) during food prep. The removable lid also ensures that it won’t flip closed onto your hands as you tip the bowl and pour ingredients out.
Storage: The unit comes with four blades that can be easily stored in-bowl. Its slicing/shredding disc, thick slicing disc, dough blade, and multi-purpose blade all stack onto a center spoke inside the bowl, so say goodbye to sharp blade discs hiding inside kitchen drawers. As far as the bowl’s design, the blades don’t lock into place during use so you’ll still need to remove them before pouring ingredients out or wind up with a blade attachment in your food.
Overflow: Why any food processor has a hole in the center is beyond me, but the fact is that many of them do. That poor design means you can only use half of the bowl, or suffer the risk of food leaking out of the center. KitchenAid’s new model instead has a flat bottom bowl with a metal spoke that blades sit atop, so you can actually fill your bowl all the way up to the top. This also makes cleaning a breeze. Just fill the bowl with soap and hot water and power it up.
Controls: This food processor features simple controls with three speed options—high, low, and pulse. No bells and whistles, no 10-speed interface. It’s straightforward and no frills, but it gets the job done wonderfully.
The 7-cup food processor will hit the market in April for $130. Too small for your liking? Don’t worry—A 9-cup version will be available this fall, too.