The fact that you are checking into a Cuisinart food processor proves one thing. You like high-quality kitchen appliances. Cuisinart never aims to be the lowest priced entry in a product category. They always aim to be the best quality. The Cuisinart FP-14 is their attempt to put their unique mark in the food processing arena. In our review we will take a look at their included accessories, power, functionality, and support. Then you can decide if this Cuisinart lives up to the reputation or not.
- Three Bowls for Added Food Processing Options
- Power to Spare
- Easy Storage and Clean-Up
- Flexible Uses Right Out of the Box
- Physical Qualities of the Cuisinart FP-14
- Other Features
- Included Accessories
- Optional Accessories
- Advantages and Disadvantages
- Consumer Ratings
- Price and Value of the Cuisinart
Three Bowls for Added Food Processing Options
The first feature which is going to grab your attention on the Cuisinart FP-14 is the three bowls included in the bundle. You have the main 14 cup work bowl and two nesting work bowls. The first nesting bowl is an 11 cup work bowl. The second is a small 4 ½ cup bowl perfect for making dips, chopping nuts, and other small cooking needs.
The two nesting bowls must be used with the 14 cup work bowl. They sit inside of the main bowl while you do your mixing, slicing, or chopping. This feature may require you to do a little extra planning as your prepare a meal. You will want to use your two smaller bowls first and save the large bowl for your final items to reduce your cleanup time and the necessity to use other kitchen bowls. To make this perfectly clear, the bowls will need to be used from smallest to largest. To use the small bowl requires both the large and medium bowls to be on the base. This nesting method produces a few additional issues we discuss in the customer ratings and cons section of the review.
All three bowls are made from tough clear polycarbonate. The bowls are all marked with measurement lines and have easy pour spouts. The measuring marks are a very nice touch from Cuisinart.
Cuisinart uses their SealTight Advantage system to seal the bowls during use. This is a rubber sealed lid which tightly closes down over the top of the three included bowls. This does mean you do not have individual lids for each bowl. You will need to clean the lid as you switch between jobs as you step up through the three bowls.
The feed tube is an ultra wide mouth design which makes it very easy to add large chunks of vegetable, ice, and other ingredients. The feed tube and food pusher can be used to create a smaller feed area for adding liquid and smaller items to avoid splashing.
Power to Spare
If there is one item which makes this food processor stand out it is power. The FP-14 has a 1000 watt motor making it one of the most powerful in its class. What is going to surprise you is how quietly the food processor runs even though it has all this power.
You have probably watched as family members and pets jump when you turn on your blender or food processor. You may not even see them flinch when you turn on the Cuisinart. It runs smooth, even, and quiet.
You will never need to worry if the food processor has enough power to churn out a big batch of milkshakes, grated ice, or mix a bowl of stiff bread dough. This is a real workhorse. It can handle up to 8 cups of flour for yeast bread dough, making it one of the most impressive machines around. It can replace many families’ stand mixers.
The powerful motor is controlling a series of four switches on the front edge. The buttons are for on, off, dough, and pulse. The on switch starts the motor and keeps it running at full speed and power. The dough switch is used for the slower heavier mixing needed for yeast dough, pasta, pie crusts, and pizza dough. Use the pulse switch when you need precise control. Pulse is perfect for when you start adding dry ingredients and liquids to blend them in slowly.
There is one unbelievable feature that goes along with all of this power. Cuisinart provides a 20-year warranty on the motor.
Easy Storage and Clean-Up
The bowls, blades, discs, and pushers are all 100% dishwasher safe to aid in fast and easy cleaning. Now, we need to discuss a couple issues with cleanup during a normal day of usage. If you will be using the series of bowls for your meal preparation you need to expect a little bit of extra cleanup time.
Since the three bowls nest together there are times you will get a small bit of leakage or spillage from the smaller bowls into the larger bowls. This may necessitate you taking a moment to rinse the bowls before your next task. This is highly dependent on the types of ingredients being used and how careful you are. Obviously, you are not going to throw the bowls into the dishwasher between different tasks. Luckily the bowls are very easy to hand rinse and clean. The other cleanup area is the lid. You will need to clean the lid between food processing tasks.
Storage of the Cuisinart FP-14 is a real pleasure due to their desire to please their customers. Cuisinart has included a great storage case for holding all of the blades and accessories helping to eliminate drawer clutter. There is an added benefit to using the storage case, also. It helps protect the blade edges so they stay sharp and clean.
Cuisinart added on another small touch on the motor base to help reduce countertop clutter. The power cord is retractable. You pull out the length of cord you need to use the food processor. Then when you are finished you retract it back into the base and store it away.
Flexible Uses Right Out of the Box
Cuisinart makes sure you have the basic blades and accessories needed to start working right after you get the FP-14 unboxed. They included an adjustable slicing disc, shredding disc, multipurpose chopping-mixing blade for both the large bowl and mini bowl, and the dough blade.
This combination will allow you to start chopping, dicing, mincing, kneading, and shredding meats, vegetables, fruits, and dough immediately. There are several other items you may want to add, but at least you will not be sitting around staring at your food processor what you can do next.
You will need to spend a few moments with the user manual to familiarize yourself with which attachments can be used with each bowl. The small bowl is designed to only be used with its own general purpose mixing and chopping blade. The two larger bowls have more flexibility in use.
Physical Qualities of the Cuisinart FP-14
The FP-14 food processor is has a very sturdy base which provides great stability on your kitchen counter especially when coupled when coupled with the significant weight of the unit. Following is the size and weight of the unit:
- Weight – 25.6 pounds
- Height – 17.00”
- Width – 11.75”
- Depth – 11.75
- Base Color – Choice of White, Black, and Silver
The 25.6 pounds of weight may have you concerned about moving the food processor around on your counter. You need to keep in mind the added weight is what makes the food processor run smooth and quiet without any walking on your counter.
We previously mentioned Cuisinart’s 10-year warranty on the motor, but that does not cover the rest of the food processor. The standard warranty is a 3-year limited warranty which covers mechanical failure, defects in workmanship, and other defects. It does not cover abuse, misuse, or modifications.
The Cuisinart warranty is a ship-in warranty. Customers report on average it takes 6 to 8 weeks to receive their food processor back on a warranty repair.
The FP-14 Comes with the basics you need to get started which includes the following items:
- 14 Cup Large Bowl
- 11 Cup Medium Bowl
- 4 ½ Cup Small Bowl
- SealTight Lid with wide mouth feed tube.
- Adjustable Slicing Disc (Can be adjusted from 1mm up to 6mm)
- Reversible Shredding Disc (Fine shredding on one side, medium shredding on the opposite side.)
- Large multipurpose chopping and mixing blade.
- Small multipurpose chopping and mixing blade. (For use in the small bowl.)
- Dough Blade
- Accessory Storage Case with Lock
- Instructional DVD
- Instruction Book which includes recipes.
All of the slicing, shredding, and mixing blades are made from stainless steel.
Cuisinart offers a wide variety of optional accessories to use with your FP-14 food processor. You may find a few of these to be essential for your kitchen.
- Julienne Disc
- French Fry, Fruit, and Vegetable Disc
- Cuisinart Counter Top Blade Containers
- Fine Grating Disc
- Thick Slicing Disc
- 3-Disc Bundle – Includes Julienne, Fine Grating, and Thick Slicing Discs
The combination of the French fry disc and 3-disc bundle would assure you can take care of nearly every food processing chore you wish to tackle.
Advantages and Disadvantages
There are a few distinct advantages and disadvantages to the Cuisinart FP-14 for you to consider as listed below.
- Incredibly powerful 100-watt motor.
- Three bowls – 14 cup, 11 cup, and 4 ½ cup.
- Easy controls including on, pulse, and dough settings.
- 10-Year warranty on motor.
- 3-Year warranty.
- A variety of blades – Dough, adjustable slicing, general mixing/chopping, and dual sided shredding.
- Wide mouth feed tube.
- Retractable power cord.
- Accessory storage case is a great bonus.
- Multiple color options.
- High liquid capacity. Can be filled to the top of the bowls safely.
- Nesting function of bowls limits use and leads to added cleanup.
- Warranty is ship-in only requiring a long time without unit if a failure occurs.
- Inconsistent slicing. (Please see consumer rating section below.)
The consumer ratings on this Cuisinart food processor are very interesting. Over 80% of reviewers give it an average to above average rating. Less than 75% of reviewers give it an outstanding mark. This brings up several important questions. Why does it score so much lower than some other comparable food processors?
The main reasons for the lower marks come down to a few minor issues. The first is the ship-in warranty. When someone needs a repair they do not expect to be without their food processor for 6 or more weeks for a high-end unit.
The second reason is the nesting bowls. The bowls often allow minor leakage from the smaller bowls into the larger bowls resulting in an additional cleanup. Each time you use any bowl you must clean the sealing lid prior to doing the next job.
The third issue is the inconsistent slicing. Many users report the food processor allows chunks of food to fall through the slicing blade without being properly sliced, and that other slices are variable in thickness. The plus side is the power of the unit will handle any slicing job you try with ease.
On the positive side, the food processor handles mixing dough incredibly well. It can handle up to 6 cups of flower making it comparable to many stand mixers.
Price and Value of the Cuisinart
This is a tricky area for the Cuisinart FP-14 food processor. The price puts it at the upper levels of comparable machines. The power, long warranty, triple bowls, and accessory case provide great value for the price.
You should take a moment to check the current price using the link at the top of our review before making your final decision.
The Cuisinart is a high-quality food processor with amazing power but does have a few limitations caused by design. If you need high levels of power or wish to mix larger batches of bread this is an excellent food processor for your home.
The slightly higher cost of this food processor is offset by the longer warranty, increased power, and flexibility of use.