Regular usage and careless handling can make your food processor’s blade dull, or worse, useless. If your food processor is tearing the food instead of finely cutting it, its blade might need some work.
Although their designs are different, food processor blades are also like other knives; they need proper upkeep and sharpening to perform well.
However, doing so is not straightforward. You cannot use any random tool sharpener to work with a food processor blade because that might ruin it instead of improving its sharpness.
So does that mean replacing a blunt food processor is your only choice? Luckily, that’s not true. You can revive a food processor’s sharpness by using some sharpening tools and providing it proper care afterward.
Interested in knowing what can bring a dead chopper/grinder blade back to life? Read on, and let me explain!
What Causes The Food Processor Blades To Go Blunt And Crippled?
Before we move forward to solve this problem, understanding its root cause is also important. Home cooks assume they are doing everything to keep their kitchen appliances spick and span, but sometimes their care doesn’t suffice.
If you’re also wondering what made your previously fine food processor blade go blunt, one of the following can be a reason:
When you don’t wash a food processor after each use, food particulate can accumulate on its blades and impact its sharpness with time.
Apart from everyday cleaning, you also need deep cleaning or thorough rinsing to keep a curved blade intact.
If you regularly grind herbs or chop hard edibles in your food processor, there can be tiny food particles around its rubber ring that compromise its vitality.
Sure using a dishwasher is easy but is it worth risking an expensive appliance’s usability? Certainly not!
The hot water sprays and chemical detergents inside a dishwasher can affect the integrity of these blades, eventually making them pretty useless.
If you’re habitual of a dishwasher for other kitchenware, take the food processor out of the lot and manually wash it with warm water. Even when you wash the food processor in the sink, don’t use hot water.
Harsh Chemical Cleaners
Other than the dishwasher detergent, some liquid soaps also go hard on food processor blades. Use a mild soap to clean food processor blades (and other knives) as abrasive chemicals can chip their thin metallic tips.
Although these strong chemical cleaners reduce your workload, they put your blades and knives in a tough spot; it’s better to avoid them.
Regular Wear & Tear
When you frequently use a food processor, it is bound to face some wear and tear with time. But the problem arises if you don’t follow a mitigation technique to limit these problems.
Leaving the air food processor blade wet after washing it, storing it in a moist place, and improper washing are the main reasons that can ruin this expensive appliance.
How To Sharpen Food Processor Blades?
After understanding the reasons which impact your food processor blade’s sharpness, the next step is to find their cure. You might be of the idea that repairing blunt knives and blades requires professional assistance; it’s not mandatory. You can do this job with a good tool and some practice.
Here are the top ways to sharpen a dull food processor blade:
Use A Ceramic Sharpener
Ceramic sharpeners used for knives and other metal tools work well with food processor blades as well. Although these sharpeners are pretty tricky to handle, they get the job done.
Follow these steps to sharpen your grinder/chopper blade with a ceramic sharpener:
- First, wear safety gloves to protect your skin from any injury because food processor blades are quite difficult to handle.
- Next, place the ceramic tool sharpener on your work surface; make sure it is steady.
- Hold the curved blade in one hand and support the sharpening tool with the other one.
- Run the blade’s entire length in the ceramic wheel, starting from one edge and ending at another. These wheels are mostly angled to house small and large blades alike, so you won’t struggle with adjusting yours.
- Move the blade through the ceramic surface 5-6 times without exerting much pressure; keep your hand straight, though.
These rounds will remove rust, food particles, and any other kind of residue that might be on the blade. If the blade is mildly damaged, using a ceramic sharpener will bring its original form back.
Whetstone Sharpeners are Also Good
Whetstone sharpeners are easier to handle when compared to ceramic honing rods as they have wider frames, and you see where the blade is going.
- If you have a whetstone for kitchen knives, take it out of the drawer and set it on your countertop to start sharpening.
- If your whetstone sharpener is chipped because of regular use, it won’t provide the desired results. Therefore, use a refined one.
- Take your food processor’s blade out and hold it from the plastic spindle.
- Move the blade’s upper curve around the whetstone’s edge with slight pressure (this movement against the edge will remove residue build-up and rust from the blade).
- Repeat this step 5-6 times on one side of the blade and then flip it to expose the other side. Rub the other side of this blade against the whetstone now until you’re happy with the results.
- Whetstone sharpeners are mellower than ceramic honing rods; you cannot put much pressure on them.
- Run the freshly sharpened blade through a paper to see if it’s done!
Diamond-Disk Knife Sharpeners Can Come in Handy
Having a diamond sharpener in your kitchen means you can bring dead blades back to life with a bit of effort. If you’ve got one, bring it on!
Note that if your food processor’s blade has two cutting edges, alternate runs against the diamond disks will be required.
- When your diamond tool sharpener is ready, run the food processor blade through its first disk to remove all debris and build-up from it. 6-7 reps through the 1st disk are enough for food processor blades.
- Once you’re done sharpening, thoroughly clean the blade before putting it back on.
And that’s all. Diamond disk sharpeners are suitable for s-shaped processor blades and straight knives alike!
Try the Rock Salt Trick
Grinding some rock salt in a food processor can greatly improve its blade’s condition, but only when it is slightly blunt.
Add some rock salt to your food processor and run it for 2-3 minutes. When salt particles hit against a blade, they polish its surface and remove stuck-on residue from it. If your food processor isn’t rigorously rusted, rock salt will take care of it.
How To Keep Food Processor Blades Sharp?
Your job doesn’t end at sharpening a blade; it requires proper care to do well in the future. Don’t leave your food processor’s blade unattended after repairing it; follow the below-listed steps to maintain its well-being:
File the Blade with a Tool Sharpener
A properly sharpened food processor blade will serve you for a considerable time before it starts showing signs of dullness. When that happens, file its edges with a metal tool sharpener, and you’re good.
Get a small tool sharpener and rub it against your blade’s cutting edge to preserve its sharpness.
Apply Some Synthetic Grease to it
A food processor blade’s shaft is often hidden and hard to clean, which eventually makes it the hub of residue build-up.
But when you clean the blade and coat its shaft with grease, it stays intact for a long time without requiring much effort.
So, the next time you file/sharpen a blade, top it off with synthetic grease, and you’re golden.
Properly Wash the Blades
Careless and infrequent cleaning is a major reason behind food processor blades going blunt. Some home cooks hurriedly rinse their food processor and leave it to air dry on the countertop; don’t make this mistake.
Every time you use the food processor, carefully wash it and dry it with a kitchen towel before storing it. Leaving tiny moisture droplets inside an appliance can severely damage its blade, and you shouldn’t let that happen.
When To Replace A Food Processor Blade?
Despite trying all remedies, a time may come when you have to say goodbye to your food processor blade. If you are unsure when to replace a food processor blade, here are some signs you should look out for:
- When a blade is rusted from both sides, and the rust doesn’t seem to come off.
- When a blade is chipped or cracked after regular use (and abuse).
- When a blade’s cutting edge becomes flat and stops performing.
If your food processor’s blade goes through any of these problems, bin it and get a new one. Don’t use a chipped or rusted blade because it will risk your food’s safety.
Sharpening a food processor’s blade might seem tricky, but it’s easily doable with some practice. You’ll need a reliable sharpener and keen observation skills to sharpen a curved blade at home.
Don’t forget to maintain the blade’s well-being afterward, whether you use a ceramic sharpener or try the rock salt trick.
Wash your food processor after every use, protect it from abrasive cleaners, and store it in an airy place if you wish to enjoy it for the years to come.