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Best Mandoline Slicers

By: Kelly Burgess on May 01, 2017

Mandoline slicers make short work of food prep tasks

The best mandolines are more than just sharp slicers. Experts say fast cleanup, convenient height adjustments and a comfortable hand guard that grips food securely are all important features in a mandoline slicer. The best mandolines will also be versatile, with the ability to slice a variety of thicknesses, dice, julienne and even cube. Some can make waffle cuts as well. If you want to go above and beyond slicing veggies, see our discussion of spiralizers elsewhere in this report.

The OXO Good Grips V-Blade Mandoline Slicer (Est. $40) out-performs most other mandoline slicers in several professional tests, earning recommendations from Cook's Illustrated, Fine Cooking and SeriousEats.com. The OXO Good Grips V-Blade Mandoline Slicer offers four thickness settings (1.5mm, 3mm, 4.5mm and 6mm), and it can create crisp, consistent straight slices, crinkle cuts, French fries and julienne strips with a set of straight, wavy, and julienne blades that store on the unit.

Experts say the OXO Good Grips V-Blade's biggest asset is its thickness dial, where each setting is clearly marked in both millimeters and inches. It also has a fold-down stand that allows the user to set the slicer upright on a cutting board -- alternatively, it can be used over a bowl with the legs folded down. The blades must be hand-washed, but the mandoline body and food holder are dishwasher-safe. Editors from one professional cooking magazine, as well as some users, point out that the blade storage area tends to get dirty during use, so it's necessary to wash the blades (even if you didn't use them) unless you remove and set them aside beforehand, which can be a hassle.

The OXO Good Grips V-Blade has a broad, easy-to-grasp hand guard, but some users warn that it's tricky to switch out the blades, and the food holder sometimes doesn't grip vegetables well. Storage is simple, users say, thanks to the compact design of this mandoline. The food guard, albeit being a somewhat awkward shape and size, fits in most kitchen drawers. Overall, users and experts say this is a sturdily built, useful mandoline slicer.

The Swissmar Börner Original V-Slicer Plus Mandoline V-1001 (Est. $40) is the only mandoline to earn the coveted "Highly Recommended" status in one professional test, where editors say it "cuts effortlessly with stunningly precise results." It comes with a thick/thin slicing insert as well as two blade inserts (7mm and 3.5mm), making it possible to slice, julienne, shred or cube cut. The Swissmar Börner Original V-Slicer Plus Mandoline also comes with a food holder with steel pins to safely grip food while protecting your hands. It has non-skid feet to rest securely in the palm of your hand, plus a cut-out notch to rest the edge of the slicer on the rim of a bowl.

Thousands of users praise the Swissmar Börner Original V-Slicer Plus Mandoline at Amazon.com, noting its precision cuts and ease of use. Several users say they've been loyal fans of the Swissmar Börner brand for decades and say they won't use a mandolin by any other brand. On the downside, a few users say that the plastic seems cheap and stains easily when this mandoline is used for slicing foods such as beets, and some reviewers say they wish it had legs so that it could stand independently. In general, it's design makes it less easy to use than the OXO mandoline.

You can get a good mandoline on a small budget

If you're looking for a usable, entry-level mandoline slicer for under $30, there are a few good options. However, cheaper slicers usually cannot do fancy cuts like julienne and waffle. Still, they might be a better choice if you just want to use it for basic tasks.

The KitchenAid Hand-Held V-Blade Mandoline (Est. $20) is a well-designed, compact little unit, and it's a great choice for everyday use. However, as is the case with most mandolines at this price point, its only adjustment is its three thickness settings.

Experts at Good Housekeeping say the KitchenAid is particularly great at slicing tomatoes, and that it cuts with uniform precision. Most experts and owners say that, although the hand guard is on the smaller side, it's soft, comfortable and easy to grip, and it guides the blade efficiently. A few, however, feel that the hand guard is awkward and cumbersome to use, and point out that the spikes designed to hold the food securely are rather short. A number of users comment on the stainless-steel blade's razor-sharpness, and they say it's easy to wipe down and feels safe to operate. The slicer is dishwasher safe and is compact enough to easily fit in kitchen drawers.

The OXO Good Grips Hand-Held Mandoline Slicer (Est. $15) is another go-to budget mandoline option that's popular with experts and users. Although it lacks the versatility of OXO's v-blade model, it's a dependable choice for quick, basic slicing. In expert testing, it receives middling marks for performance: its cuts can be inconsistent and it doesn't create clean edges on tomatoes. The Handheld Mandoline Slicer is meant to be used either onto a cutting board, onto a plate or over a bowl -- it features a curved, non-stick handle that can hook onto a bowl's rim. It also has a viewing window so you can keep an eye on your vegetables as you slice. The finger guard receives mixed reviews among users; some say it's tempting to forego using it because the slicer doesn't grip food well, and this detracts from the product's overall safety. This standard model is adjustable for three thickness settings, but for a slightly higher price you can buy the OXO Good Grips Large Adjustable Handheld Mandoline Slicer (Est. $25), which features a wider ramp and seven different thickness settings.

Benriner is a favorite among professional chefs 

Walk into any professional kitchen and you're likely to find a few "Bennie's" lying around. That's what many chefs affectionately call the Japanese-style mandoline slicers made by Benriner, such as the popular Benriner Wide-Body Slicer also known as the Super Benriner. It is wider than the standard Benriner Japanese Mandoline Slicer (Est. $25) for those who need to slice larger foods, although both models earn high marks from both professionals and users. Editors at TheSweethome.com praise the Super Benriner for its comfortable handle that provides great control for the user, noting that its large, diagonal blade provides smooth, clean cutting action to make quick work of food prep.

The Benriner Wide-Body Slicer's simplistic design places function over aesthetics, which suits most professionals and experts just fine. It comes with four stainless steel blades for producing fine shreds, julienne or thicker batons, and the thickness is easily adjusted with a set of screws on either side of the board. Its flat design makes for easy storage in a kitchen drawer or cabinet.  

The blades, being diagonal rather than V-style, can be sharpened, a feature that experts say isn't common among mandoline slicers. On the downside, experts say that the hand guard is awkward to use. Testers at TheSweethome.com say it seems like "an afterthought," describing it as "a rectangular piece of plastic with a couple of minuscule spikes and no ergonomics." For this reason, many users will simply opt not to use the handguard. Coupled with the Super Benriner's extremely sharp blades and the fact that hand-washing is recommended, this is precisely the reason why this mandoline is better-suited for experienced chefs than novices.

The standard Benriner Japanese Mandoline Slicer (often called the Old Version Green Mandolin) also gets solid reviews from both professionals and experts for its great performance and user-friendly design. It shares many features with its wide-body counterpart: an adjustable knob changes blade height quickly and precisely, and the slim hand-held body style stores easily in most kitchen drawers or cabinets.

The Benriner Japanese Mandoline Slicer's performance is first-class; reviewers say it slices thinner than most mandolines and also produces excellent julienne cuts. It comes with three interchangeable blades, fine, medium and coarse, but does not include a blade for crinkle or waffle cuts. Some say it's too narrow for their purposes, however, opting for the wider Super Benriner to better accommodate their slicing needs.

We read plenty of stories of people who cut the heck out of their hands -- or even sliced off the tip of a finger -- because they become distracted or misjudged the distance to the blade. Even experienced chefs bear the scars of using this sharp slicer. If you do opt for one of these top-rated professional-grade mandolines, consider investing in a pair of cut-resistant gloves as well, such as the NoCry Cut Resistant Gloves (Est. $13).

Cut-resistant gloves have been around for a long time, but were mostly found in the hardware aisle for those who work with sharp tools, now they've come to the kitchen and may be a life-saver -- or, at the very least, a finger-saver -- for home cooks.

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