Blender Vs. Food Processor Soup: Which Is Best For Your Recipes?

When to choose a blender over a food processor and vice versa is pretty straightforward for many dishes. But when it comes to soup, you may have hesitated over which machine to grab for that final step. Or perhaps you only own one of the two and are wondering if purchasing the other will up your soup game. The answer depends on a few factors.

First, you can use both a blender and a food processor to help you make soup. However, the two create different consistencies, meaning the choice between a food processor and blender comes down to the mouthfeel and texture you want to achieve in your soup.

If your goal is a silky, puréed soup, a high-powered blender is your best bet. Any blender will do, but a high-speed one will yield the ultimate velvety spoonful. Think creamy carrot ginger, butternut squash, seafood bisque, creamy mushroom, and vichyssoise. Blenders typically come with either a fixed X- or wing-shaped blade, while some sport a hybrid of both styles. The fixed X-blade is best for puréeing soup, though either should work fine. The shape of a blender also helps create a creamier soup. The tall jar creates a vortex that allows the food to circulate as the blades do their thing, resulting in a thoroughly blended end product. And don't discount an immersion blender (also known as a stick blender) which allows you to purée the soup directly in the pot, minimizing time, effort, and cleanup.

When a food processor is the best choice for soup

A food processor will yield a chunkier consistency for your soup. It's the perfect choice for a cool gazpacho or a corn and potato, roasted tomato, or black bean soup. Anytime you want some pieces of the food left in or just more bite in your bowl, the food processor is your best choice.

Food processors come with an S-blade (also known as a sabatier blade) as the standard attachment. When pulsing the processor, the S-blade will help chop ingredients or mix a dough or batter. However, when you leave the button pressed down, the S-blade can help blend the soup. You can also use your food processor to chop veggies before cooking and then use a blender for the final purée to create the ultimate smoothness. 

When using a blender or food processor to purée the contents of your soup, be mindful of the temperature. A piping hot mirepoix and broth straight into either appliance can be dangerous and a downright mess. The hot contents can create pressure inside either machine, which may push the lid off and spray scalding liquid all over your kitchen (and potentially you). This can also damage the motor of the machine. Be sure to let the food cool a bit before powering on.