4.5 Reviewed by SusanRating:
The Cuisinart DLC-10SY Pro Classic Food Processor could not be considered a workhorse, but this medium duty machine costs only around $100. It’s a considerable step up from your basic food choppers, and it offers some nice features without the giant price tag of the high end machines.
This model is a 7-cup food processor that includes attachments for chopping, slicing, shredding, and mixing. A dough blade is not included, but it has an extra wide feed chute and also comes with a flat cover for processing without the feed tube.
Like its predecessor (the DLC-10S), the DLC-10SY has been criticized for going overboard on safety features. Keep reading for more about that plus all the other pros and cons on this model.
Note: On the manufacturer’s website, this model is now listed as discontinued. HOWEVER, it is still readily available at Amazon.
- 7-Cup Work Bowl Capacity
- Extra Large Feed Chute with Large and Small Pushers
- Chopping/Mixing Blade
- Stainless Steel Slicing Disc (4mm thickness)
- Stainless Steel Shredding/Grating Disc
- Detachable Disc Stem
- 600 Watt Motor
- 1 Speed plus Pulse Control
- BPA free
- Dishwasher Safe Parts (bowl, lid, blades)
- 5 Year Limited Warranty on motor, 3 Year Limited Warranty on entire unit
NOTE: You will often see this model being promoted as powerful enough to knead dough, and it is indeed designed for that. However, be aware that a plastic dough blade is not included and must be purchased separately. (see more below under About Kneading Dough and Optional Accessories)
The “Bad” News
To save your valuable time, let’s start with what this model won’t do.
The work bowl is too large to be feasible for very small tasks. To mince a pod of garlic or chop a few herbs, you’ll need a small food chopper instead (or a plain ole knife and cutting board!).
This is true of any food processor because the blade throws foods outward, away from it. Some other models come with an additional, smaller bowl for such tasks, but the Cuisinart DLC-10SY is designed for the 7-cup work bowl only.
Also note this information from the manufacturer regarding cheeses:
- Never slice soft cheeses such as mozzarella or hard cheeses such as Parmesan. This can damage either the slicing disc or the unit itself.
Note – these cheeses may be processed using the chopping blade. Some cheeses such as Cheddar or Swiss can be shredded by using the shredding blade. (also see About Cheese below)
The owner’s manual does not mention ice, but generally speaking, most food processors are not designed to crush ice as it can scratch or cloud the work bowl. Never make a smoothie in a food processor unless the manufacturer specifically says that its machine can handle that task. (If your main interest is in making smoothies, you should shop for a good blender instead.)
Before you begin processing, it’s a good idea to read the manual for details and complete instructions.(Back to Top)
The Good News
Compared to other models in this price range, the Cuisinart DLC-10SY works well for a variety of tasks, including:
- chopping vegetables, meat, poultry, nuts, and chocolate
- making salsa, pesto, hummus, and guacamole
- making pastry and pizza crust
- kneading bread dough (see more info below)
- mixing cake batter and cookie dough
- pureeing ingredients for baby food or soups
- shredding vegetables, fruits, and cheeses as noted above
- slicing most vegetables and fruits, some processed meats, and some chilled raw meats
Keep in mind that this is not a high dollar food processor, and there are limitations to several of the above items. One is that the included slicing disc cuts 4mm slices, which is extremely thin. That can be perfect for carrots, celery, and zucchini, but it’s not so great for tomatoes. Foods with high water content will process better with the 8mm slicing disc, but that does not come with the unit and must be purchased separately.
About Cheese: In addition to the manufacturer’s warning, note that softer cheeses need to be chilled before processing, while certain hard varieties may need to be at room temperature. There are also cheeses that cannot be sliced, including Parmesan, Romano, Brie, and Mozzarella.
At 600 Watts, this model has adequate power for the average cook and is most useful for common day-to-day tasks. It would not be the best choice for gardeners at harvest time or anyone who processes big batches for long hours. If you’re a super user, you’ll want to check out other models with more power and larger capacity.
That does not mean this machine is slow. On the contrary, the motor runs so fast that if you aren’t careful, you’ll turn what was supposed to be salad into soup. This high speed can make it tricky to get uniform results at first. You may need to try processing smaller amounts at a time, and your results will improve with practice.
The 7-cup capacity is usually a good size for singles or couples, but that of course depends on lifestyle. If you entertain often or like to double recipes to freeze one for later, the work bowl could be a little too small for you. Be sure to note the maximum capacity for liquids below.
Does this model go “overboard” on safety? Some people think so. By design, this unit can be tricky to assemble until you get the hang of it. Both the work bowl and the lid assembly must be securely locked in place, or the motor will not run. This is a built-in safety feature that protects your fingers from those incredibly sharp blades and discs. That is actually a good thing! Despite the complaints, the majority of owners do not consider this a problem or a drawback. It just takes reading the directions and a little practice.
About Kneading Dough
As mentioned before, the plastic dough blade is sold separately. The following information from the manufacturer may help you decide whether you will need or want it.
According to the manual, the general rules for kneading bread dough are as follows:
- Stiffness: Never attempt to knead a dough that is too stiff to comfortably knead by hand.
- Maximum Amounts: Use recipes that call for no more than 4 cups of all-purpose flour or no more than 2 1/2 cups of whole-grain flour. For larger batches, divide dough into smaller batches to knead.
- Blade: When recipe calls for less than 3 1/2 cups of flour, use the included metal blade. When recipe calls for more than 3 1/2 cups of flour, use the plastic dough blade (sold separately).
For complete details see instructions starting on page 13 of the manual.(Back to Top)
Size & Capacity
This model weighs about 15 1/2 pounds and measures approximately 7.00″ x 11.25″ x 14.50″. The base unit has four rubber “feet” on the bottom, which are not suction cups but do help stabalize unit.
The discs can not be stored inside the work bowl. Count on finding a safe space to store them, or consider buying one of the accessory boxes.
The work bowl’s total capacity is 7 cups. That maximum will be smaller for liquids and semi-liquids, especially very thin liquids. Overfilling the work bowl may result in leakage or overflow. The manufacturer recommends:
- Thin Liquids (i.e., broths and soups):
Maximum bowl capacity = 2.75 cups
- Thicker liquids (i.e., pancake and cake batters):
Maximum bowl capacity = 5 cups
What’s Included with the Cuisinart DLC-10SY
- 7-Cup Work Bowl
- Lid Assembly with Extra Large Feed Chute
- 2 Feed Chute Pushers (small and large)
- Compact Flat Bowl Cover (without feed chute)
- Chopping/Mixing Blade
- Stainless Steel Shredding/Grating Disc
- Stainless Steel Slicing Disc (4mm thickness)
- Instruction/Recipe Book
The manual provided by Cuisinart is somewhat generic, labeled only “DLC-10S”, but it is illustrated and provides a considerable amount of information. You’ll find tips for getting the best results with various processing tasks, as well as photos showing how to pack the feed chute with foods of different shapes and sizes. A good number of recipes are also included.
See the owner’s manual online here: Cuisinart DLC-10S Owner’s Manual.(Back to Top)
Optional Food Processor Accessories
In many cases the metal blade can be used for kneading (see About Kneading Dough above. If you need or prefer the traditional plastic dough blade, it can be purchased separately and usually costs less than $20. See it on Amazon here: Cuisinart FP-749TX-1 Dough Blade
The three specialty discs available for this model are: Julienne, Fine Grating, and 6mm Thick Slicing Discs. These can be purchased in a complete set of 3 (the best value), or you can buy each disc individually.
There are two styles of accessory boxes available, one for storing discs only, and another for storing both blades and discs. This might seem like an unnecessary luxury, but the discs cannot be stored inside the work bowl. Since these cutting edges are extremely sharp, you may not want them stacked loose in a cabinet or drawer.(Back to Top)
A significant majority of consumers are very pleased with this model. It earns praise for being reasonably quiet to operate, easy to clean, and in general living up to realistic expectations. In particular users mention success with nut butters, pizza dough, pie crusts, pesto, and hummus, as well as vegetable slicing/chopping and grating cabbage for slaw.
The included blades and discs meet most people’s needs, which saves the cost of buying extra accessories. The owners manual provides considerable detail that can help you get the best results, especially if you’re new to food processors.
By far the favorite feature of just about everyone is the flat bowl cover. It’s easier to snap into place and easier to clean than the standard lid/pusher assembly. Many people use it exclusively because their routine food processor jobs are things like hummus, pesto, salsa, nut butters, and chopping vegetables.
Recent years have seen lots of complaints in general about the decline in quality of Cuisinart appliances. Only a few owners expressed that opinion about this model, and the majority disagree. You’ll find numerous reports from people who feel that of all the Cuisinart models, this one is much closer to the high quality level this company produced in years gone by. Perhaps that is why this model is a good many years old and still one of Amazon’s top sellers.
All of the serious complaints I found involve units that were dead on arrival. In that case you shouldn’t even have to file a warranty claim – that is, if you buy from Amazon then it’s super easy to send it back to them, at their expense.
Also note that you absolutely have to read the instructions on this model. Some (or many?) of those folks who think they received a defective unit may not have been getting the lid locked in place correctly. If the lid assembly is not secured, the motor will not run.
Otherwise, owners who chose this model are extremely happy. Over the years it has maintained it’s high 4.5 average consumer rating, with almost 88% of users giving it 4 or 5 stars.(Back to Top)
- Well built, quiet to operate, easy to clean
- Does a good job of chopping, mixing and grating
- Does a fairly good job of slicing most foods
- Powerful enough for some heavy jobs such as bread dough
- Good quality at a very reasonable price
- Can not be used for very small jobs
- Locking the lid assembly can be tricky (translation: frustrating)
- Somewhat difficult to chop foods uniformly
- Easy to accidentally overprocess foods
Cuisinart DLC-10SY Pro Classic 7-Cup Food Processor Review: Summary
One of the biggest challenges in eating healthier is the time involved in cutting, chopping and cooking fresh. Any appliance that saves you time gives you a helping hand. It won’t be quite so tempting to opt for something that’s faster but far less healthy!
The Cuisinart DLC-10SY is a medium capacity food processor that includes the most commonly used blades and discs. It meets the needs of most average users, and it does a good job on a nice variety of foods. Owners praise it for being powerful yet quiet to operate, as well as easy to clean. Over the years it has earned, and still maintains, a high overall rating for being a good quality machine that is very reasonably priced.(Back to Top)
Still undecided? See lots more options on our comparison charts:
- Other medium capacity models: Food Processor Comparison Chart – Medium Capacity (7 to 9 Cups)
- Go bigger: Food Processor Comparison Chart – Large Capacity (10 to 16 Cups)
- Go smaller: Food Processor Comparison Chart – Small Capacity (3.5 Cups or less – electric food choppers)
We put all three charts on the same page so you can quickly view models of all sizes.