Product review: Breville Sous Chef 12 Food Processor

Breville Canada Sous Chef 12 Food Processor image on eatlivetravelwrite.comWe’re creatures of habit over in the eat. live. travel. write. household and change isn’t something we always embrace easily. Both Neil and I (and, in fact, Cleo too) have our habits and when it comes to cooking and baking, we both have our “ways” of doing things, our favourite bowls, utensils, bowls and appliances. Speaking of appliances, when I moved to Canada, I inherited Neil’s kitchen (couldn’t bring any of my appliances from France) including his 30+ year-old Moulinex food processor. It’s the most simple appliance you’ve ever seen but it gets the job done. I like that it’s smaller than most modern food processors (I can haul it around with one hand which is useful since it lives in a bottom cupboard) and really appreciate its simplicity and have been reluctant to make the move to a new processor, even though it’s most definitely on its last legs. A few years ago I left the bowl on a stovetop and it melted (uh, yeah!), leading to a frantic internet search for a new bowl. I eventually found one but it was never quite the same – flour leaks out of it when I’m making pastry, for example. The bowl is also quite small so recently, for recipe development purposes, it’s been a bit limiting as I’ll have to make two separate batches of, say pastry, instead of doubling up. So, I’ve been slowly on the hunt for a new one. Despite my dislike for changing up what I know!

In the various kitchens where I teach, I’ve had the chance to use a few different brands of food processor and have never really found one I was comfortable with. I’d done a lot of reading and also had heard great things about Breville. After my great experience with their Duo Temp Pro espresso maker, I was very happy when Breville Canada asked if I’d like to give their Sous Chef 12 a go!

Features of the Sous Chef 12 Food Processor

  • a 12-cup dry capacity (so much bigger than my old machine, makes doubling up recipes a breeze!)
  • an 8½ cup liquid capacity
  • Three feed chute options (it has a 5-inch large feed chute wide enough for chunky vegetables like potatoes or wedges of cabbage, a 2 ¾-inch medium feed chute and a  1½-inch mini feed chute which works well with long thin ingredients like carrots, keeping them upright during slicing and shredding).
  • Push-in cord storage
  • High impact BPA-free bowl
  • Stainless steel spindle
  • Non-slip feet (this might sound like a given but it is a great feature, especially when you are working with dough, when some machines tend to dance around the countertop)
  • a pulse button for maximum control over how long you process (useful for things like cutting butter into flour for pastry)
  • a Micro-Serrated S Blade™ which can even mince meat
  • an adjustable slicing disc (with 24 setting settings from paper thin (0.3mm) to thick cut (8.0mm) to customize and create restaurant quality precision cuts)
  • a reversible shredding disc (with the option for coarse or fine grating)
  • a dough blade (this is plastic and softer than the Serrated S Blade™ and “encourages the gluten strands to be stretched, not cut “as with a metal blade and has worked really well with some yeasted doughs I’ve been working with recently)
  • A heavy-duty 1000-watt motor with a 10-year warranty

What I love about the Sous Chef 12 Food Processor

  • It’s quiet! Despite the fact that it’s a fairly substantial machine it is actually much quieter than our old food processor. It looks and feels like it should make a lot of noise but looks can be deceptive.
  • It’s quick. The motor is obviously substantially more powerful than our old food processor and it gets the job done fast.
  • It does what it says. I’ve tried every blade and attachment and they all work beautifully. From puréeing soups, grating chocolate, making pastry, slicing and grating veggies and even for “kneading” some yeasted doughs, it’s handles every task I’ve given it with ease (and even with a ton of dough in the bowl, the motor doesn’t appear to strain like some other processors I’ve tried).
  • It doesn’t have a hole when you remove the blade or attachment. There was nothing that would annoy me more with my old machine (and some others that I tried) than when I needed to pour ingredients from the bowl into another bowl and half of them would drip down the hole where the bowl fitted onto the base. The Sous Chef 12 is a fully-enclosed bowl that doesn’t have that issue. Sounds like a small thing but it’s notable.
  • It is easy to clean. Though it has a lot of components, they clean up pretty easily (not too many nooks and crannies for food to get caught)

What would make the Sous Chef 12 Food Processor even better

  • If the base was smaller – it’s a *tiny* bit bulky to fit easily in my cupboard.
  • If it weren’t so heavy. Because it doesn’t stay in my countertop, I am always pulling it out of the cupboard and it’s requires both of my hands because of the weight of the motor.

(I guess both of these are, in fact, “pros” but the bulk makes it less user-friendly than my previous machine, even though in every other way it works so much better).

Overall, I’ve been really impressed with this machine and am slowly getting used to its different sized base. It’s worth it because of the great job it does, its much larger capacity and quieter (yet way more powerful) motor. I think we’ve got a long future ahead of us with this one!

Win a Sous Chef 12 Food Processor!

Canadian readers: Enter for a chance to win a Breville Sous Chef 12 for yourself! Details here.

Breville Canada Sous Chef 12 Food Processor image on




Buy the Breville Sous Chef 12 on Amazon (this link should bring you to the Amazon store geographically closest to you).






Disclosure: I received a Breville Sous Chef 12 Food Processor in exchange for an honest review. I have not received further compensation for writing this post or hosting a giveaway. As always, all opinions are my own and I only write about products I have tested and can recommend myself.


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4 thoughts on “Product review: Breville Sous Chef 12 Food Processor”

  1. Mardi, you made a sale, sort of. When I could no longer replace the bowl on my trusty 30 year old Cuisinart, I bought a new model. It wasn’t the same quality as the original. Ignoring the recent blade recall, after just 3 years, the new one’s bowl broke beyond repair (we were getting pretty good with epoxy). So I bought yet another Cuisinart. The bowl broke after 2 weeks. I decided to abandon Cuisinart. After a lot of visits to kitchen stores plus reading on-line reviews, the Breville seemed my best bet, but I was dragging my feet. After reading your review, I decided it was time. I trust your judgment more than kitchen store employees and strangers. Just tonight, I went to Sur La Table to buy a Breville (though I like the attachments that come with the 16-cup better, so that’s what I got). The best surprise was a 3-day special giving 20% off Breville food processors. Thanks for the push to take the plunge!

    • Betsy this is wonderful to read. I’m glad my opinion carries enough weight to help you make a decision for a big purchase like this! I hope you love ti as much as I do!

    • Oh wow, really? This one is quiet enough that I can even use it when I am teaching on Zoom without having to mute… I guess it does depend on what you are processing though, I tend to use this mostly for pastry.


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