Chop without a Knife or Electric Appliance

Chop without a Knife or Electric Appliance
Photo courtesy of Kuhn Rikon

Product reviewed: Kuhn Rikon Push Slicer

As someone who spends a fair amount of time chopping vegetables, I was looking forward to trying a new device that could save time. While food processors are great, they don’t always chop or slice foods the way you want. Plus, good ones are pricey, take up significant storage space and can be a hassle to get out and clean.

The Kuhn Rikon Push Slicer has two cutting options, slicing and dicing, and a lid for each which pushes food through the blades. It also has a push container that doubles as a storage vessel with a lid.

The push slicer works very well for soft foods such as cucumbers, olives, mushrooms, zucchini and strawberries. The uniform slices are great for attractive salads and desserts.

The tool works with a lot of pressure for harder foods such as onions and almonds, which are probably easier to chop with a knife. Small and medium raw potatoes needed some pressure to slice or dice. I liked that the diced potatoes were narrower than I would make by hand. I used them for oven-roasted potatoes, which looked like french fries and cooked more quickly, saving energy. When I attempted to slice a larger potato, it resulted in both potato and push slicer parts flying across the room. This brings me to an important point: Make sure food is small enough to fit within the circumference of the slicer.

The push slicer had a little trouble with peels, specifically a grilled eggplant slice with its peel. I was able to slice a bell pepper piece held on its side or with the skin face down. Whole grape tomatoes didn’t work well either, but I found the push slicer worked better if the tomato was sliced in half and placed skin-side down.

I had good results making celery sticks and zucchini slices by carefully holding one piece of the vegetable on its side, then moving my fingers away as I push down. The slicer also worked to dice baby carrots and would be helpful for cutting root vegetables for making soup.

The product’s instruction booklet includes suggested foods for the dicing and slicing lids, but many other foods can be used. The dicing lid works well for bananas and beans, which then can be mixed into baked goods and used for burritos or tostadas, respectively.

I agree with the manufacturer’s recommendation that children shouldn’t use this slicer because the blades are very sharp. I wonder how sharp they will remain with repeated use. If foods get stuck in the dicing or slicing lid, use caution when removing the food. If the lid isn’t on straight at first, it’s best to push it flat onto a cutting board rather than trying to adjust it and possibly get cut. You can carefully rinse out the parts or wash them in the dishwasher.

I think the Kuhn Rikon Push Slicer is a useful addition to your kitchen if you have a little extra space. It also may be good for people with physical limitations such as limited manual dexterity. Using this tool can help you avoid the repetitive motion of chopping, but it won’t replace a knife completely.

Melissa Altman-Traub on Twitter
Melissa Altman-Traub
Melissa Altman-Traub, MS, RDN, LDN, is an assistant professor of dietetics and freelance writer and speaker. Connect with her on her website, Melissa's Food, and Twitter.