Blenders and food processors are often used in place of one another.
After all, they are very similar appliances.
Still, some major differences make them better for specific uses than their counterpart.
Many users might ask: can you make a smoothie in a food processor?
Well, we will answer this question with an in-depth response about the specifics of whether or not you can do so and how to go about it.
Blenders Vs. Food Processors: What’s the Difference?
Although a blender and food processor seems like similar appliances, the small differences set these machines apart.
A blender is used to liquefy ingredients and is typically used to make smoothies from fresh fruits, vegetables, and milk or juice.
Food processors are designed to be used for sauces and pastes because the blades are more rigid than blender blades and can cut through thicker, denser ingredients.
Nuts, frozen fruits, and onions or garlic are often used in food processors and wouldn’t be chopped up as well in a blender.
How Do They Work?
Food processors look and work differently than blenders, even though they both have blades that cut up ingredients.
These machines are designed for larger ingredients, and the blades are placed at different heights to cut up the entire item at once.
Blenders create a whirlpool effect that works with a taller design.
On the other hand, a food processor is wider and flatter, so you’re able to place in different food items.
Also, food processors are not truly designed for liquids because the blades are not centralized at the bottom of the bowl like blenders are.
Can You Make a Smoothie in a Food Processor?
Although this is not true for every food processor, some options can be used to make smoothies.
This all depends on the type of smoothie you are making and what you choose for your ingredients.
However, you should not use the food processor as you would a regular blender because there are some special steps you should remember to take before making your smoothie.
With these four steps, you will be able to make your food processor into a smoothie blender for a day and make yourself a smooth and delicious smoothie without a blender.
Pro Tip 1: Sharpen the Food Processor’s Blades
Food processors are not designed to liquefy ingredients like blenders are, and the sharpness of the blades will hinder your ability to make a smooth texture and consistency.
Sharpening the blades will ensure that you get a liquid consistency at the end of the process.
If not, you may have chunks of fruits and vegetables still floating in your smoothie.
There are blade sharpeners available that will make this step quick and straightforward.
However, you want to make sure that the end result leaves the blade as sharp as possible to slice through the fruits.
Pro Tip 2: Add Enough Liquid to Blend the Ingredients
In a blender, you often try not to add too much liquid to avoid causing your smoothie to turn out too thin.
With a food processor, you may need to add a bit more than the usual to ensure that your ingredients are blended well enough to drink.
A food processor usually makes very thick pastes, kinds of butter, sauces, hummus, or guacamole, but smoothies need to be thinner.
Adding a little bit more milk or juice to make sure that blades cut through all the ingredients will help your smoothie from being too thick to drink.
Pro Tip 3: Defrost Frozen Fruits and Vegetables
Blenders can handle frozen foods well, but food processors are not designed for these types of items.
Putting your bags of frozen fruits and vegetables in the fridge the day before you plan to use them is advised.
In doing this, you defrost the ingredients just enough to soften them for the food processor.
If you are going to use ice in the mixture to ensure that the smoothie is cold and fresh, you will want to use smaller sized cubes that can be broken up easily.
Alternatively, if you don’t want to use ice, you can refrigerate the liquid you plan on using for a longer time.
This will ensure that it will cool the entire smoothie without the need for ice.
Pro Tip 4: Soften Foods Before Blending Them
Food processors don't work the same as a blender, so using solid foods as you would in a blender won't give you the same result.
You will want to soften your ingredients before you mix them by running them under warm water or leaving them out of the fridge for a few minutes before blending.
This will help keep the food soft enough for the food processor blades to cut into easily and slice up for a smoother texture.
You can also soak your ingredients in water before using them.
This will fill them with a bit more water and make them easier to blend.
Also, doing this gives you a slightly large amount of liquid without pouring it into the food processor itself.
What to Look for in a Food Processor?
If you are planning to use your food processor as a blender to make smoothies, then you need to get the right machine for the job.
Not all food processors will have what it takes to be able to make the right consistency that you need, so you want to look for a high number of watts.
This is the biggest difference between multiple food processors and will determine if it will be able to work through the ingredients that you will be using for your smoothie.
If you get a food processor with too little wattage, it will not be able to handle the job.
What Wattage to Look For?
Blenders often come with higher wattages than food processors, so if you want a processor that will blend, you need a high number of watts.
A good number to stick with is 700 watts and above.
This is easier to find in food processors now.
Still, you want to ensure that it is not under this amount.
Else, you will likely have problems with getting the right smooth texture that you want.
Smoothies are a great breakfast, lunch, or afternoon snack, and it can be easier than ever to make them with a food processor.
However, you want to take our tips into consideration before you use just any appliance to do this.
So, can you make a smoothie in a food processor?
Well, with our tips and tricks, you can.