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The Never-Ending Food Processor Debate

So, I'm in the market to replace my food processor. I've had a 7 cup Cuisinart for some time. I bought it used so it's not in the best shape visually (also it got left on a hot stove recently and the side warped, which drives me crazy), but it still works fine. My biggest complaint with it is that there are too many nooks and crannies where food gets trapped -- we don't have a dishwasher so it's especially hard to clean for us.

In general I tend to be of the mindset that when I get new cookware it's worth spending a little to get something that is really high-quality and really going to last. That being said, if there's no need to break the bank, I'd prefer not to.

One thing I'd really like is to have the option of multi-sized bowls, which I know the Kitchenaid, Breville, and Magimix have, but I haven't seen on any of the cuisinarts. The latter two are quite pricey, though, and they'd need to offer more than a few extra accessories to justify the cost.

As far as size goes, even though I cook a lot I've actually been fine with the 7 cup capacity, since I use my hand blender for soups, etc. And space is an issue, so no need to go for the hugest size.

Thoughts? Is the Magimix or the Breville really worth twice the cost of the others? Kitchenaid vs. Cuisinart? I have reviewed some other posts about this, but wanted some advice that might be more specific to what I'm looking for.

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  1. Bumping this one up, as I'm considering the Breville splurge.
    Any advice for us?

    2 Replies
    1. re: sea97horse

      Would love to revive this thread. I am finally considering taking the plunge. Still torn about whether the Magimix is worth the splurge. The reviews I read seem to indicate that it is definitely better than the cuisinarts, but not that much better to justify the double price tag.

      Right now I'm leaning towards the magimix. Particularly as I just saw the juicer attachment that they sell with it, since I have been wanting a juicer but don't have the space for an added appliance.

      Haven't heard that much about the Breville.

      1. re: arielleeve

        Is Magimix available in North America?

    2. The Magimix is made by Robot Coup in France, the manufacturer of the original Cuisinart, the CFP 5, which we have been using since it came out in the '70s. Still going strong.

      1. I wore out a late 70s vintage Cuisinart...finally wearing it out. I looked long and hard, read a lot of reviews and ended up buying a Magimix. Yes it was a bit more costly, but I have used the shizzle out of it and it asks for more.

        I like equipment that works, stuff that will take a pounding and asks for more.

        The Magimix is doing that so far.

        1. I know there's been a lot of Cuisinart Elite bashing around here but I love mine and have been using it for a couple of years without a single disappointment. They seem to pop up in heavily discounted deals around Black Friday.

          1. We bought one of the early Cuisinarts made by Robot Coup in France and our daughter is still using it. My wife wanted a smaller processor, bought a KitchenAid, also made in France, we've had it for years with no issues. Magimix is the last of the French made food processors. Overall, I've had very good luck and have been pleased with the quality of French or European cooking equipment. They take a lot of pride in their cooking and thus in the equipment they manufacture. I have not had this same experience with products made in China or Asia. What I have found is that companies transfer their manufacturing to China, lower the quality and don't lower the price. You continue to pay for the Brand Name, but you don't get the quality of product that established that brand name. I have found this to be true of not only cooking impliments, but tools and products of all types. If I were going to pay the extra money for a product, I wouldn't pay it for something made in China or one of the other low cost manufacturing countries in Asia. So I would spring for the Magimix.

            1. I bought a Cuisinart Elite this past spring. I am very happy with it. It has 14 C. 11C. and 4 C. bowls. They nest together. One thing I am especially pleased with is that the post for the blades is much longer and allows for more liquid without spill-overs.

              1. Magimix! I won't buy a KA or Cuisinart food processor again.

                12 Replies
                1. re: Becca Porter

                  Definitely leaning towards this now. I had been questioning the breville, which is such a reviewer favorite, but it is so giant that I think it eliminates it for my small NYC kitchen. The Magimix comes in a 12 cup variety which is definitely large enough for me since I currently have a 7 cup and rarely find it to be too small. 16 cups is just unnecessary for my purposes.

                  I'm still looking at the Cuisinart prep in 11 cups (Elite seems to have fairly mixed reviews without being much cheaper than Magimix 12 cup). It's half the price of the Magimix, but I love that the Magimix has multiple bowl sizes, which I think I will definitely use for making dressings, sauces, mayonnaise, etc. Not to mention the extra discs, storage box, and possible juicer attachment. Is all of it worth spending twice as much? Not sure, but I think in the end the Magimix is less likely to crap out on me at some point in the future, and that alone makes it likely worth the splurge.

                  Thoughts, anyone? Curious if anyone has experience with the juicer attachment...

                  1. re: arielleeve

                    A few people I trust highly recommended buying one here: http://www.thegourmetdepotco.com/magi...

                    I plan on it as soon as my finances recover from Christmas.

                    My Kitchenaid stripped its shaft and the bowl/blade are stuck on real good. It's unusable. It took hacking to get it to work anyway.

                    I have an old Cuisinart that I can use by pressing the button with a hand mixer whisk handle. :( The discs aren't usable at all.

                    I cannot wait to get this one!

                    1. re: Becca Porter

                      I was looking into that site...but the new one at Williams Sonoma is $300 and you can get 10% off an order when you sign up for their mailing list, plus free shipping...so in the end probably pretty close in cost.

                      1. re: arielleeve

                        Does it come with all the same stuff?

                        1. re: arielleeve

                          The two models I saw at WS earlier today were marked down but not to $300; actually $345 and $399 for chrome. I've seen the machine in chrome for as high as $800. The reboxed version appears to be the lowest price going.

                          1. re: HillJ

                            Maybe the one you were looking at is the bigger size? Here's the 12-cup in white for $300:

                            http://www.williams-sonoma.com/produc...

                            1. re: arielleeve

                              You're right the trio started @ the 14 cup at the price I quoted. Love the trio bowl design-smart.

                                1. re: Becca Porter

                                  I'm definitely sold on it, just gotta finally take the plunge.

                                  I knew I wanted to spend some Christmas money (my husband's family always gifts us lots of cash) on a kitchen item, but I was torn between a new FP and a Vitamix. On the one hand, our current blender is much sadder shape than our current FP (Cuisinart). But I use the FP multiple times a week, and the blender only around once or twice a month. I also figured that if I get a really good FP like the Magimix, maybe I'll use it to replace the blender in certain recipes. Especially if I end up buying the juicer attachment...

                                  1. re: arielleeve

                                    This decision is easy for me because I already have a VitaMix. I bought the 5200 using VitaMix's free 3-payment plan. I haven't regretted it once!

                                    1. re: arielleeve

                                      Any chance the price will drop further?

                      2. Well, I still have the first-generation non-Robocoupe Cuisinart Mrs. O gave me shortly after we married in 1982. It's on its second bowl and third top/pusher assembly, but the motor is tireless. Yes, I could stand a bigger bowl, but really don't have counter space and no wish to store it down where I have to lug it out. I use it about three times as often as the stick blender and over ten times as often as the stand mixer; it's my big old buddy.

                        1. We have been using our original Cuisinart CFP 5 since it was introduced, and a couple of years ago, purchased the 20 cup Cuisinart model which we use for larger jobs. No trouble with either one of them.

                          I think that if I needed to (not wanted to) replace the Cuisinart(s), I would go with the Magimix. Like the CFP5, Made in France and I would assume that like our original Cuisinart, it would still be running 30 plus years from now.

                          1. I have the new Breville & love it! Used Cuis. FP for years before that.

                            1. I'm going through exactly the same dilemma! I'm from Canada so we don't have Magimix. Probably not the worth the cost for home use.
                              According to Consumers Reports Breville is the best but can only find the 12 cup. Kitchenaid is probaby equal to Cuisinart. So where does that leave us?
                              My ideal would be a 7-8 cup Breville, Cuisinart or Kitchenaid.

                              1. I had a Cuisinart DLC 11 for years and it was a great machine. When it finally died I bought the KitchenAid which was on sale for a very good price at Costco.

                                The KitchenAid is really not a very satisfactory machine compared to the Cusinart.

                                In particular: It's huge & takes up a lot of space; the lid & feed tube design is mediocre & clunky; The adjustable slicer is mediocre although practice may improve that; stuff gets stuck under the lid; the controls are harder to work that the Cusinart; the bowl doesn't drop the food down tot he blade as well so it's tough to chop all the onions without pureeing them.

                                Of course, your opinion may vary but I wish I'd bought another Cusinart.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: JoeBabbitt

                                  I finally bit the bullet.Bought a Cuisinart Elite 12 cupper! Will let you know how it goes. Thanks for everyone's help.

                                2. To update everyone: I bought the Magimix and love it so far! Have only had it a few weeks but it's been great. The blades are super sharp and I love having multiple size bowls. I used it to make stuffed eggplant and it was handy because I did the onions/garlic/ginger in the small bowl, then took it out and did the eggplant mixture in the larger one. Seems fairly easy to clean thus far. Very powerful. No regrets!

                                  3 Replies
                                    1. re: Caradon

                                      Williams Sonoma. I had a 10% off coupon and free shipping, and I bought it with the juicer attachment (haven't tried that yet), so it was around $370 for everything. The Magimix original price on its own, without attachments was $300, before the 10% off. I got the 12-cup, in white. The silver is more expensive, as is the 14-cup.

                                    2. re: arielleeve

                                      I just bought myself the 14 cp Magimix. I bought mine from The Gourmet Depot. $277 shipped! I get it next week, and it can't wait to put it through its paces.

                                    3. I recently purchased the Breville. I like it...but it tends to pulverize some food. I did a video on the unboxing and a review of the Breville as well as the Cuisinart Elite. You can find it on you tube under Amy Learns to Cook.

                                      1. I know you've all been dying to find out what I decided. Well, I realized there was no way the Breville would fit under my cabinets. (I live in a Manhattan 1-bedroom, so space is tight.) As I was debating the Magimix 3200 XL (the 12-cup, as the 14 would likewise not fit)I saw that Williams-Sonoma was having a 4-day sale, 20% off all electronics. So I pounced. The $350 machine (chrome) became $280, and the 3-disk add-on set went from $60 to $48.
                                        I am really happy with it so far! (Though I was replacing a 30-year old 7-cup Braun which could no longer deal with a tomato, so anything would be an improvement.) I've chopped up leeks and sliced potatoes for a fish dish, shredded pecorino, made scallop and cod cakes, and my annual summer Pesto all'Ericiana. The machine is stable, quiet, strong, and fast. (In fact, it almost pureed the fish cake mixture with three quick pulses, so I'll have to be more careful.) It cleans up relatively easily, though I handle those Sabatier blades gingerly.
                                        So it gets a strong recommendation from me.

                                        1. Just bought the 16-cup version from Chef's Catalog on sale @ $359 with an additional 20% from a coupon I was emailed. It came with both the creative disk set and the juicer/smoothie attachment. I bought the dicing kit from Gourmet Depot ($49) and the mash/puree attachment from my local Williams Sonoma the other day on clearance for $15.98.

                                          Very high quality. Still haven't used all the attachments yet but I plan to tomorrow.