Food processors are praised for versatility, and rightfully so. With a food processor, you can do without many of other kitchen tools such as the mortar and pestle, mandolin, mixer, box grater, and grinder. There’s no doubt that the food processor saves kitchen space while at the same time saving cooks from much of the drudgery of labor intensive, repetitive food preparation tasks. The question is: should you stretch its usefulness and save a couple of bucks more by using it as an ice crusher?
Can Food Processors Crush Ice?
With the right motor power and attachment, yes, it can. Some models do claim ability to crush ice. If you check the motor power and the attachments, most food processors would appear powerful enough and its blades/discs sharp enough for the job. If you intend to use your food processor for crushing ice, consider the medium shredding disc or the parmesan/rasping disc attachment.
A Word of Caution
While food processors CAN do the job, you may want to think twice before you use your food processor for this purpose. After all, just because it can, doesn’t mean it should. Most manufacturers and seasoned users would caution against this and recommend using a blender instead for the following reasons:
- Crushing ice can scratch and cloud the otherwise transparent work bowl. The work bowls of most food processors are made out of plastic, which can be easily scratched by the pieces of ice during processing.
- It can also dull the metal blade/disc. Ice is much harder than the other food ingredients processed by the device. Most blades/discs are designed to withstand processing fruits, vegetables and meat. If the blade is frequently used for ice, it can wear out easily.
Alternatives Worth Considering
If you’re only considering making smoothies, consider freezing fruits and vegetables and throwing the frozen pieces into the food processor. This will yield excellent smoothies and even quick ice creams. However, if you really must crush ice, what option do you have?
Your best option may be to purchase a blender to take care of ice crushing needs. The good news is some food processors actually come with a blender attachments. This saves you money and space since you wont have to purchase a separate motor dedicated for the blender. You can simply use the motor for the food processor.
The Kenwood FPP225 Food Processor is a compact food processor that comes with a 2.1L bowl and a 1.2L blender jug along with an array of attachments. You can use the blender jug for crushing ice and preparing smoothies and the bowl for regular food processor tasks such as chopping, slicing, and shredding. The stainless-steel blades are tough enough to crush ice or produce smooth purees.
The dual-drive system automatically adjusts allowing both a food processor and blender to be run from the same motor base, thereby, saving kitchen space. The powerful 750W motor can also be controlled with variable speed control to achieve the desired consistency.
The Ninja Master Prep Professional takes charge of kitchen work from chopping, slicing, shredding, ingredients to crushing ice into snow in a matter of seconds. The 450-Watt motor pod can be used to power one of the three jars that come with it: the 48 oz. pitcher for frozen blending and smoothies, the 40 oz. bowl for food processing and meal preparation, or the 16 oz. chopper bowl for even chopping. You can choose which one to use depending on the amount of food you are preparing and the processing you need done.
The Ninja Mega Kitchen System is equipped with a 1500 watt motor to take care of meal preparation needs at a professional performance level. The motor can be fitted with one of the jars that come with it. The BL770 model comes with a 72 oz. blender pitcher and an 8 cup food processor bowl. The BL771 model comes with an additional 3 cup bowl-in-bowl with chopping blade.
The blender pitcher features Total Crushing technology to quickly crush ice and frozen fruit. The 8-cup food processor bowl is equipped with a chopping blade for perfect, even chopping and a dough blade that can handle up to 2 lbs. of dough in 30 seconds. It also comes with a reversible slicing/shredding disc and a grating disc, giving you a versatile and powerful kitchen help.
The Nutri Ninja|Ninja Blender System costs more but also offers more. It’s a high speed blender, a food processor and a nutrient & vitamin extractor (extracting drink containing vitamins and nutrients from fruits and vegetable) in one. It’s no doubt powerful with the 1500 watt motor but the Auto-IQ ensures that this model is also brains not just brawn. The Auto-iQ technology provides intelligent programs that combine timed pulsing, blending, and pausing patterns. Yes, you don’t have to pulse, pause, pulse, and pause over and over; this model does it for you.
Like the Ninja MEGA System, it comes with the XL 72 oz. blender pitcher with Total Crushing technology which pulverizes ice to snow in seconds and the 8 cup for processor bowl equipped with sturdy blades and discs for the chopping, slicing, shredding, pureeing, dough-kneading.
The 2 in 1 Prep & Blend is designed to cover much of your blending and food processing needs. Powered with a 600watt motor with 4 speed settings including high, low, pulse and ice crush, this Cuisinart is a great addition to any kitchen that needs a little help. The unit comes with a glass jar with 1.5L working capacity and double seal lid designed to handle tough blending and crushing tasks, and a food processor bowl with a chopping/mixing blade, a reversible slicing/grating disc and a whipping/emulsifying disc
With the food processor and blender combo, you get two items for the price of one and saves you space. The food processor comes with a 9 cup bowl and the blender is at 5 cup (40 ounces).