This mini food processor makes meal prep a breeze in my tiny apartment kitchen

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If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s messy countertops. Since much of my work is testing kitchen appliances and cookware, I have way too many bulky appliances on my lack of counter space, so the idea of ​​buying another bulky gadget is far from appealing. However, we’re at the point of the year when football season, dinner party season and the holidays collide, and for easy and delicious dips, salsas and spreads there’s no better little appliance to have in your arsenal than a food processor. .

Unfortunately, most food processors have a large footprint – not something I need in my already cramped apartment kitchen. And while I like using my hand blender and Nutribullet for certain applications, there’s something about the way a food processor chops and slices ingredients that you can’t quite replicate without the real thing. That’s why I was so excited when I found the perfect solution to my problems: Cuisinart’s 3-Cup Mini-Prep Plus Food Processor.

So this little guy obviously doesn’t equate to having a huge, powerful, restaurant-quality food processor – but at the end of the day, how often are you realistically going to use one of these? No, this small but powerful processor is all I need, especially since I don’t often cook for more than a handful of people. The easy-to-use (and seriously affordable) Mini-Prep Plus makes what would normally be time-consuming prep tasks a breeze, from pulverizing herbs to grinding nuts and whole spices. And you can switch between chopping and grinding settings without having to change the blade.

I have to say the stainless steel blades are still razor sharp – even after more than a year of using this workhorse. I use the chop mode to smooth out bits of carrot, celery, and onion for sauce bases and sofritos that are super easy to work with, and the grind function is perfect for hummus, dips, and salsas. I’ve even used it to emulsify mayonnaise and salad dressings! My favorite part of the whole device, though, is the small footprint. It takes up about as much space as a toaster and stores neatly in my cupboard when not in use – in other words, it doesn’t need to be on my counter 24/7 like a larger sized food processor.

I’m not the only one who’s head over heels for it either. With over 500 five-star ratings on Williams Sonoma’s site, it’s clear this is a fan favorite. “Does exactly what I need,” writes one reviewer. It’s also built to last — as one reviewer explains: “I bought my first miniprocessor about 16 years ago and after all this time it finally stopped working. I liked it so much I bought another one and I’m sure I’ll have it just as long. I use it almost every day.”

And if you don’t know what to get the home cook in your life this holiday season, this would make an easy, thoughtful gift — especially if you’re shopping for someone with limited space or someone who just moved into their first apartment. and is eager to throw a dinner party. Plus, for under $40, the price is right!

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