Can I use a food processor instead of a food mill?

In this brief guide, we will discuss the following question, “can I use a food processor instead of a food mill blender?” and other queries related to this topic.

Can I use a food processor instead of a food mill? 

Yes, a food processor is the best substitute for a food mill. However, a blender, potato ricer, colander, hand mixer, sieve (or strainer), or a grater are also best substitutes for a food mill and can give you the needed texture.

For some dishes, you might need a combination of two tools to reach the needed result, texture and consistency.

What Is a Food Mill?

A Food mill is a three-part kitchen utensil made of stainless steel or aluminum. It is composed of a bowl, a grinding plate, and a crank and is powered manually.

The bowl of the food mill has a wide mouth and legs to keep it stable, its special design makes it over different sized bowls.

The grinding plate is placed inside the bowl and is attached to it. The plates of the grinder come in different size holes to create different food textures. A crank is placed over the grinding plate.

Food mills were developed in the early 20s of the past century, it is a handy piece of equipment and is present in many kitchens. It is designed for pureeing and mashing food.

What Are Food Mills Used For?

Here is what you can make using a food mill:

  • Mashed potatoes
  • Applesauce
  • Tomato sauce
  • Fruit marmalades and jellies
  • Creamy soups
  • Spaetzle noodles 

Using a food mill is so convenient since it doesn’t need electricity, is portable, and is easy to clean.

Is the food mill the same as a food processor? 

There is a difference between the food mill and the food processor. A food mill can function manually without the need for electricity and its parts can be taken apart to be cleaned easily. However, the food processor needs electricity, and only the bowl and the blade can be removed and cleaned.

Moreover, the food mill allows you to strain debris from the sauce and soften food by removing the seeds, the skin, and the fibers whereas the food processor combines everything.

How to choose a food mill substitute?

When deciding which tool or equipment to use instead of a food mill you should take into consideration two things.

First, decide what texture you need to achieve. It all depends on your recipe, if you want to remove the seeds of the tomato for example a food mill is a perfect choice.

Second, if you do not have enough time to prepare your recipe, avoid using a food mill since it takes a lot of time and effort, use instead a food processor or a blender.

What are the best food mill substitutes?

There are several substitutes for a food mill.

  • Food processor: is one of the best food mill substitutes. All you need is a sharp blade. Process the food until you reach the desired consistency. Peel your fruits or vegetables if your recipe requires the absence of seeds or skin. It is a good way to smash your potato or to make a creamy soup.
  • Blender: can do the job of a food mill in a fast way and it gives you a smooth mixture. Like the food processor, the blender does not remove seeds, so consider peeling your fruits or vegetables before blending them.
  • Potato ricer: it is a good substitute for a food mill because it also does not require electricity for functioning and is faster than a food mill. It is usually used to mash potatoes and many types of baby food but it does not provide a smooth texture for the puree.
  • Colander: it looks like the grinding plates of the food mill, so it is a nice substitute and it can give you the same result as a food mill, but the inconvenience of this method is that it needs a lot of effort. But this method removes the seeds without the need of peeling the fruits or the vegetables beforehand.
  • The hand mixer: to use it, you need to chop your food into small pieces. Consider combining this method with another one because alone it will not provide the needed texture.
  • Strainer: using this method is similar to that of the colander but this one gives you a more smooth and fine texture.
  • Grater: it is a good substitute in some cases like making a tomato sauce.

Other FAQs about Food Processors that you may be interested in.

Can I use a food processor as a blender?

What can I use if I don’t have a food processor?

Can you crush ice in a food processor?


In this brief guide, we discussed the following question, “can I use a food processor instead of a food mill blender?” and other queries related to this topic.