WebstaurantStore / Food Service Resources / Buying Guides / Types of Fruit / Vegetable Slicers, Cutters, and Dicers

Types of Fruit / Vegetable Slicers, Cutters, and Dicers

Few things can "wow" in a commercial kitchen as much as an experienced chef using impressive knife skills to slice, dice, chop, and otherwise process fruits and veggies. The problem is, not every foodservice operation that needs to process fresh produce has someone so capable on-hand round-the-clock, and for those that do, their time may be better spent on other tasks. Fruit and vegetable slicers, cutters, and dicers make that a concern of the past by allowing even the most inexperienced workers to produce consistent, quality cuts that ensure customer expectations are always met, portions are easily controlled, and food waste is reduced to a bare minimum!

Key Purchasing Considerations

Garde DC12 1/2 inch Vegetable Dicer
What type of product are you cutting?

Many fruit and vegetable cutters are considered "all purpose" because they can process a variety of fruits and vegetables equally effectively. Others are specially designed to address more unique challenges like processing larger produce such as heads of lettuce, or longer, narrower produce like green onions or cucumbers. You may even need a blooming onion cutter to create the unmistakable flowering onion appetizer.

What size and type of cut do you need?

There are a lot of machines available that can slice, dice, and wedge produce in a variety of sizes. Other machines provide a more specialized cut, like fruit corers and vegetable corers, which will simultaneously remove inedible cores while wedging or peeling the product.

What is your ideal mounting solution?

The ideal mounting solution for your cutter may vary depending on your operation's layout, production volume, space restrictions, personal preference, and other variables, but there are a couple of specific things to consider for each orientation.

  • Countertop: Most cutters either have non-skid rubber or suction cup feet to help prevent the unit from moving during use, while also affording operators the flexibility to store them out of the way when not in use. For a more permanent fixture and to completely eliminate the chance of the fruit cutter moving during use, some models can also be mounted directly onto the counter. Either option provides a convenient way to process product directly into a food pan or storage container.
  • Garde TSLC316 3/16 inch Tomato Slicer
  • Wall: Wall-mount cutters offer the peace of mind that the unit won't move during use, and without taking up any valuable space on countertops or storage racks. They can also be beneficial in high-volume applications since virtually any container, no matter how large, can be used to catch the falling product.
What kind of volume are you working with?

Generally speaking, the amount of produce you can process is dependent upon how fast you can load the product, thrust down on or turn the handle, and reload product. There are, however, select electric models available that make quickly producing clean, consistent cuts even easier than a manual fruit and veggie cutter.

Care and Maintenance

Proper care and maintenance is important for all tools in foodservice because it helps keep them safe, sanitary, and working for you as long as possible. That is especially true for fruit slicers, cutters, and dicers. A few things that you should keep in mind:

Garde BPXLKIT12 1/2 inch Blade and Push Block Assembly

  • It's important to clean the unit after each use. Many of these models can be used to process different fruits and veggies, so it's a good habit to get into to avoid cross-contamination. And since tomatoes, oranges, and other foods are acidic, you don't want their juices sitting on the product after use because that can create corrosion issues.
    • Pro tip! Select models are dishwasher safe for added convenience.
  • Be alert for dulling blades. As with any blades, these will dull over time. If you begin to notice that operation doesn't feel as smooth or if your foods are getting bruised, it's likely that your blades are dulling and your fruits and veggies are being "smashed" instead of cut. Thankfully, replacing the blades is very simple and can typically be done with either an assembly that includes all of the blades pre-fastened into a holder for optimum convenience, or with kits of individual blades that slide into place for a more affordable alternative.

Changing Cut Type and Size

Garde WBA6 6 Section Blade Assembly

If you'd like to produce a size or style of cut that your machine doesn't accommodate out of the box, don't rush out to buy a whole new unit just yet! In many cases, you can adjust a unit that was designed to produce 1/4" dices so that it produces 4 even wedges or just about any other available cut. All that you need to do is pair a correct blade set and push block and swap them out with the original components. Making this switch is generally as easy as loosening a few screws, while some blade sets and push blocks even come packaged together for added convenience!

It is important to note that, while some Garde parts will work with select Nemco units, this is the exception and not the rule. Beyond this exception, blades and push blocks from one vendor won't work on another manufacturer's fruit / veggie cutter. So if you'd like to change the type of cut on a Vollrath dicer, you'll need to buy a Vollrath blade set and push block.

A Note on Compatibility

Avantco SS-PT-71M 71 inch 3 Door Mega Top Stainless Steel Refrigerated Sandwich Prep Table

The compatible produce listed with each series of product is produce that's been listed by the manufacturer as being compatible with a given unit. It isn't practical to list every type of fruit and vegetable a cutter can be used with so, while you may find one of these cutters is an excellent long-term solution for a more unique product like starfruit, you perform such tests at your own risk.

French Fry Cutters

Garde FC38 3/8 inch Heavy Duty French Fry Cutter

French fry cutters are among the most popular manual prep tools in the industry. Whether you want to add fresh-cut fries to your bar menu or maximize productivity at a high-volume burger shop, there's a fry cutter for every need! To learn more about french fry cutters, from the various cuts like straight, wedge, curly, ribbon, garnish, and chip to all of the many different sizes, be sure to check out our detailed french fry cutter guide.

Cutter Comparison Tool

To make choosing from our vast selection of cutters a bit easier, check out the handy cutter comparison tool below! Simply select the type of cutter you're looking for, and hover over the available options to see additional information about the given product.

All Purpose Cutter

All Purpose

Not designed for any specific fruit or vegetable, but able to process a variety equally effectively. Popular cuts include slicing, dicing, shredding, wedging, and coring in a wide variety of sizes.

Tomato Slicers

Tomato Slicers

Tomatoes are a very delicate fruit, so the pusher on these units is curved to cradle the tomato and the blades are sometimes installed at an angle so that pressure is applied gradually instead of all at once across the entire body.

Wedgers / Corers

Wedgers / Corers

Frequently used to expedite prep work in bars by creating wedges of orange, lemon, lime, and more. Some models core as well, eliminating the inedible core from produce like apples and peaches. And some corers are even more specialized, like those that simultaneously peel and core pineapple.

Lettuce Cutters

Lettuce Cutters

A head of lettuce is larger than most other fruits and vegetables, so the main benefit when comparing lettuce cutters to others is the large cutting area that can accommodate a head of lettuce (may need to be cut in half) and in some cases even melon or cooked chicken breast. These machines cut cleanly with no crushing or bruising so your lettuce stays crisp and maintains its fresh color.

Onion Cutters

Onion Cutters

Built with onions and other firm fruits and veggies in mind, onion slicers use a curved pusher to apply pressure evenly across the entire onion instead of a single point of contact, while a vertical orientation uses mechanical leverage to minimize fatigue. Other more specialized onion cutters include models that create a flowering (or blooming) onion as well as those made specifically for long, narrow green onions.

Subscribe now for great deals and industry tips! Sign up for our mailing list to have weekly discounts and industry knowledge sent right to your inbox.

Food Service Resources

Tips, guides, & advice

Explore Resources
  • Visa
  • Discover
  • American Express
  • MasterCard
  • Paypal