Prepping With The Ninja Master Prep


A couple of weeks ago Euro Pro invited me to New York to check out a new product they were introducing, the Ninja Master Prep. I figured hey, if they’re picking up the tab, I’ll come take a look.

Boy am I glad I did. Sure, checking out Times Square at night was cool … although I’ve seen it on TV so many times it wasn’t that much of a revelation. But what I’m talking about is the new toy I got.

Now before you get all, “Dude, Grandma didn’t use a food processor,” let me tell you about Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

Back before Keanu Reeves was known as a … as a serious … serious actor … BWAAAAA-hahahaha!

Okay, sorry, I couldn’t type that with a straight face.

Where was I? Oh, right … Before Keanu Reeves was famous, he appeared as Ted “Theodore” Logan, a Southern California slacker teen in one of the iconic movies of the 1980s. He and his best friend Bill S. Preston, Esquire, travel back in time to kidnap historical dead dudes for their history report.

When they turn the historical dudes loose in the mall, Beeth-oven finds his way to the music store, where he sits in front of a rack of keyboards and rocks the hell out. (Stick with me, this is where I get back to Grandma and the Ninja.)

Now, some people think that Beethoven’s music is best when performed on period instruments. The theory is that those are the instruments he composed for. And that’s true, but you can also look at it this way: Beethoven composed on the most modern instruments available to him. If he’d had a synthesizer, you can bet he’d have used it.

That’s what I tell myself when I use the new food processor. Grandma never used this because it didn’t exist. But if it had been available, you can bet she’d have wanted it.

So what’s so great about this thing anyway? The big difference you notice right away is the motor sits on top instead of underneath. So you can use one motor for two different sized choppers. It also means the containers are watertight, so you can snap a lid on and put them right in the fridge after you make whatever you’re making.

What’s less obvious, but is the real treat here, is that there are two sets of blades in it instead of just one. The typical single blade is either too high, and you can’t chop less than a cup or so of whatever you’ve got; or it’s too low, so the bottom gets pureed while the top is still chunky.

But check out how little garlic I tossed into this. Most food processors wouldn’t even be useful for this little bit.

But two quick pulses and it was all evenly minced. Notice how low that bottom blade sits.

Here’s what I had after about five seconds worth of chopping. I don’t think I’ll be doing garlic by hand any more.

Next up was a little experiment. Someone asked at the product launch if you could do mozzarella cheese. That’s a big challenge for most processors. Mozzarella is so soft it usually gets gummed up. They said it would work, though, so I tried it with muenster.

Any time you’re trying to shred a soft cheese, it’s best to start with it pretty cold, which I did. And this was sliced muenster, that I broke into smaller pieces so it would fit in easily. So did it work? You betcha.

Three or four quick pulses and I had shredded muenster. I don’t think I’ve ever seen shredded muenster before.

And that’s the Ninja Master Prep, the first product I’ve ever used that seems to be at least 80% as good as the infomercial makes it look.

Tomorrow I’ll put together the garlic and muenster from this post, with the tortilla chips from yesterday, plus a couple more things for some amazing seafood nachos. Remember to subscribe to make sure you don’t miss it.


  1. Drew,

    Will this do dough for bread or pasta?

    • I just got my Ninja over the weekend. I decided to put it to the test to make pizza dough after a presentation I saw on QVC where the host perfectly mixed cake batter. It worked amazingly well! And the cleanup was easy. Great buy!

      • sharon kilkelly says:

        Dear Melissa, having just purchased a ninja master prep, and the recipe book is very minimal, can you give me your recipe for pizza dough, and does the ninja make cake mixture, ive tried emailing customer service but they are of no help and do not know, sharon

      • Stephanie Woodruff says:

        Dear Sharon,

        Could you please e-mail me the recipe for the pizza dough for the Ninja?

        It isn’t in their book on line and I can’t reach them to give it to me.

        Thanking you in advance.



      • Mary, I’ve done this ice-cream substitute made with frozen bananas, but for true ice cream you need something that cools the cream as it stirs it. For that you’re going to need an ice cream maker.

        Of course there are other options, which I haven’t tried, so I can’t say what I think except that they look interesting.

      • Ninja Master Strawberry Ice Cream Recipe

        1 1/2 cups milk
        1/2 cup milk
        1/4 cup whipping cream, heavy
        1/4 cup sugar
        1 cup strawberry, frozen
        1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

        Combine 11/2 c of the milk, whipping cream and sugar, and then stir to dissolve sugar. Fill one 16 cube ice cube tray with the mixture. Freeze for at leate 3 hours, or until frozen solid.

        Place ice cream cubes in the Master Prep Pitcher and then add frozen strawberries, strawberry syrup, vanilla extract and the remaining 1/2 c of milk over top. Secure the Pitcher’s top and pulse for 10-15 seconds, until smooth and creamy.

        Serve granished with a drizzle of strawberry syrup or fresh strawberries.

      • Lisa, thanks! My girls are going to love this.

        One thing, I don’t see strawberry syrup in the ingredient list.

      • Mary, there’s a recipe on their website and I just made it five minutes ago to test my brand new Ninja… You can look it up on, but here’s what I did, adapted a bit for a smaller amount because I just had part of a bag of frozen blackberries in the freezer.
        Into the blender bowl I put:

        1 c. Frozen berries
        2/3 c. milk
        1/2 tsp. vanilla
        2 packets of Splenda (you can use 1/4 c. sugar if you want)

        Blended for 20-30 seconds. DONE. DELICIOUS! :) the whole thing took about 2 minutes. Amazing.

        (I ate some right away, but put the rest in the freezer — the recipe promised a harder, more ice cream-ish texture if frozen for an hour or so.)

      • This is how I make fabulous ice cream:

        All you need are two ingredients: Frozen berries and fat free vanilla creamer and that’s it!

        I’ve used stawberries, blueberries, blackberries and a combination of all (all from Trader Joe’s btw) and all are delicious. Sometimes I’ve also add a few frozen banana pieces. I’ve even frozen some mandarin orange sections. Then the ice cream tastes like a CreamSicle.

        Pour the desired berries into the Ninja and process until all the fruit is reduced to tiny little pieces. THEN add the fat free vanilla creamer..a little at a time until the desired consistency. If you want to add more sweetner, you can, but the creamer is pretty sweet.

        Just experiment with different fruits and flavors. Since it only makes 1 – 2 servings at a time, if you don’t like it, it’s not a big $ so you don’t have to be obligated to eat it.

      • Lee Anne, that “creamer” is a vile chemical stew. Use a little real cream and enjoy yourself.

  2. Think of it this way: When I become a grandma (hopefully not soon, I'm 45) and if my grandkids want to cook like me, what do you think I'll be using? Food processors! You betcha!

    • Using a food processor is just dandy, I like my Ninja! However, with that said, teach your grandchildren the basics, the fundamentals for a good foundation. Then let them have at it with the Ninja. If they can’t use a knife properly and only know how to use a machine, they are in deep garlic puree if they don’t know how to use a knife properly!

      • Absolutely. It’s like doing math: Yes, I can add and subtract in my head, but if I’m balancing my checkbook I’m going to use a calculator. (Okay, a spreadsheet actually, but you know what I mean.)

  3. Kristin @ Going Country says:

    I'm not sure I could use a product named the Ninja Master Prep with a straight face. I'm sure it works very well, but maybe they need to reconsider the name if they really want to compete with Cuisinart.

    • Blue Ninja says:

      Whats wrong with the ninja name? it slices it dices it does what i do on a nightly basis to save the world from evil beings but it does it in your kitchen on food its Brilliant!

    • Maybe I have no sense of humor but I don’t get it. What exactly is the issue with the name. I take it that it works as a ninja (the humans), extremely fast and extremely efficient with blades. I’ve looked at the name repeatedly and still just don’t get your comment. Does anyone else get it?

  4. Jonica, I'll check the manual, but I doubt it. This thing seems to go much faster than other processors I've used. That could just be the double blades making it look faster, though.

    Beth, you'll probably like this line from Earl Wilson. "You can say this for ready-mixes: The next generation isn't going to have any trouble making pies exactly like mother used to make."

    Kristin, I thought the same thing. It's a really interesting choice.

  5. I've seen this a couple of places, it looks pretty cool. And unlike Kristin, not only could I use it with a straight face, but I happen to have a mask and sword I would wear while doing it. Course, I'm an odd guy. Heh.

  6. I. Want. This.


    Thanks Drew!

  7. Kate in Italy says:

    So if it doesn't do dough like a normal processor, does it have a price I'm willing to buy it for regardless? Because otherwise it kind of sounds like a double bladed Magic Bullet.

    • They are going for roughly $50 on!

    • It is a magic bullet but with bigger containers. If one wants the dough maker, they have to buy the blender system. I have the prep pro and it works very well. It makes great snow!!

      • Donna Smith says:

        It is like a bullet but better. I had two bullets before I got the ninja and the problem I was having was if the liquid in the bullet cup seeped out of the top and ran down the side of the cup while you were pulsing something it went into the motor and no more bullet. I think motor on top is a better design.

    • $40 at Walmart.

  8. No, it doesn't look like it handles dough. And yes, it is sort of like a Magic Bullet.

    But the way this thing turns ice into frozen drinks is amazing. Check out this review: He does a smoothie starting about five minutes in. If anything, I'd say it works faster than what he showed. And I can't find anyone showing it turning ice into snow, so I'll see if I can record that.

  9. Stephanie says:

    Speaking as a person who still uses her grandmother's 1950 Sunbeam MixMaster, I do think that she would have used this. I remember when she got an electric egg beater to replace her manual one.
    However, I probably wouldn't get it. I don't have a blender or food processor. I do have an immersion blender and I do dough by hand. I guess my future grandchildren (far, far in the future) will probably look at me for being kooky. But then they probably won't mind, as long as they can have all the cookies they can eat. Mixed by a 1950 Sunbeam MixMaster. :)

  10. I have the Bella Cucina version of the magic bullet, and I LOVE it. I use it for salad dressings (always sucked at those before), pesto, you name it. I haven't touched my real blender since I got it.

  11. Dragonridermom says:

    What's clean up like with this??

    • I bought one of these right after Christmas…had to make NY Eve party food. It was pretty clumsy at first, but this dawg learns new tricks quickly. Once I got the hang of it, I couldn’t believe how much time I saved with prep and clean up, which, incidentally, is a breeze. I love the fact that you can prepare an ingredient and then cover the bowl and stick it in the fridge until needed. No additional bowl for storage needed. As for cleanup, in the dishwasher…that simple.

  12. The blades and containers are dishwasher safe, though I do them by hand. The lid for the large pitcher has a spring-loaded bit in it — part of the safety switch so you can't run it without the lid in place. I'm always careful to keep food out of that, and make sure it's dry before putting it away.

    All in all, really easy, as long as you handle the blades carefully.

    • Ditto…especially part about blades. I would not use this product around small children.

      Re: the lid for the pitcher…lots of crevices where food particles or excess water might end up. For me, that’s the only nuisance.

      • Be cautious with the blades. I was making frozen drinks with mine and after a batch was rinsing the pitcher, blades fell out and hit my toe and left a nice cut. The upside is I didn’t feel it at all so you know the blades are SHARP. (I was wearing flip flops)

    • How can you clean the spring-loaded bit in it — part of the safety switch so you can’t run it without the lid in place? I cant get the stuff that got in there out even running through the dishwasher.

      • Misty, I must have gotten lucky, because I’ve never gotten anything in there that didn’t come out with a little running water. I agree, though, that’s a bit of a design flaw. Sorry I don’t have any great suggestions. :-(

  13. MoniteauMom says:

    I just bought the Ninja and haven't gotten to use it yet…I want to make soft serve ice cream, but I don't know where to begin. Any suggestions or recipes? Thanks!

    • Put in frozen fruit add a little milk ( sugar if fruit is unsweetened) pulse a few times then hold button down. My grandson loves mixing all kinds of flavors together just to see what ice cream he can make. If you add too much milk you will just have a milkshake instead. Saves you from buying different flavors of ice cream and throwing some out just buy frozen fruit or freeze your own.

  14. MoniteauMom, I think I've got the recipe book somewhere around here. I'll see if I can find it and see what's in there.

  15. Hi Drew… I just discovered your website and love it! I’m sending links to all my friends.
    I found it looking for reviews of the Ninja, which I bought just today. I chopped onion and shallots for a shrimp/pasta sauce, and was thrilled at how evenly it chops (my MB used to pulverize garlic and onion). My friend has one and we were wondering if you can use the larger container for chopping larger batches of veggies, etc. Have you tried this yet? Any suggestions? I am making a big pot of vegetable soup soon, and don’t want to have to chop endless little batches of vegetables. Thanks for your help, and I’m looking forward to trying your recipes.

    • I also found your site searching for the Ninja. You site rules! I didn’t realize it’s that easy to make fresh pasta. I also like your sausage and gravy recipie.


  16. AJ, you can do surprisingly large batches of vegetables in it. You can overstuff it, but it takes a lot to get there. As long as you aren’t shoving stuff down to fit the lid on you should be fine.

  17. David Wheeler says:

    The Ninja is the greatest kitchen invention I’ve ever used. I use it every day; twice, sometimes three times a day. I bought one for my dad and a good friend. You’ll be blown away by how much time it saves you and how easy it is to clean up.

  18. I bought this right after Christmas. My decision was based on the fact that it was the only kind of food processor left on the shelves. I figured there might be something wrong with it, since there were many there on the shelves (3 high), but I was desperate and bought one anyway.

    After fumbling around with it (and attending to a few minor cuts from the new blades!!!), I got my “groove” on and went on a chopping spree. New Year’s Eve party food prep was a snap! Loved the fact that I could just snap on a lid to each container and store in the fridge until I needed the contents.

    Here are few things I didn’t like about the machine:
    – the motor head kept slipping out of my hand when I picked it up. Wish it had a little clip or handle for easier pick up.
    – covers have too many crevices where food/water can build up. Too much care needed to dry by hand.
    – color, which could be the reason they didn’t sell out.

    The “pros” outweigh the “cons,” however. I use this machine just about every day. This is a great addition to my kitchen.

    • Rob Keesee says:

      This is in response to Kat’s comment about the motor head slipping when picking it up. I had the same problem/complaint because the two indentations that were ‘intended’ to help didn’t work as they should. However, I found a simple solution.

      I traced the shape of the indentation onto a piece of plain paper and used it as a pattern to cut out two pieces of self-adhesive ’emory cloth’ (also known as ‘sanding cloth’ ) glued those in place and…TA DA!…no more problem!!!

      The Emory Cloth or similar material can be found in most good hardware stores or in home improvement stores like Lowes or Home Depot. To get it with a self-adhesive, waterproof backing it might be necessary to go where electric sanders and drills are sold, as they sell self-stick sanding materials for both those items and that would suit the purpose.

      Good luck — and Happy Ninja! (Now I’m about to go make a ‘quickie’ omelet.)

  19. How do I make the peach ice cream they showed on the tv

  20. Brenda, I didn’t see the ice cream. But here’s someone doing strawberry ice cream with the Ninja. You could probably substitute peaches pretty easily.

    • I bought this last week at Sam’s club. It was the bigger package with 2 additional processing bowls and lids for them. This thing is great! And I got it for a song! Under $35. (They only had two left and had marked them down to clear them out.) Great deal on a great product. If you only use it for smoothies, margaritas, and, my favorite, a version of an Orange Julius, it was well worth the price.

  21. just got back from sams club with my new ninja master prep and what a deal i got came with 1 – master prep pitcher (48 oz) and 3 – mini master prep (2 cup) with lid’s all for $39.99 . I Love my Ninja Prep , just maid some smoothies . and yes it turn’s ice into snow . looking for some ninja recipe’s to enjoy . nice site by the way ! thank you drew

  22. Carol Bochert says:

    I love my Ninja Master Prep! To clean the top I use one of those small round brush cleaners that have the small compartment that fits in the palm of your hand that you can put dishsoap in.

    I made chicken salad this weekend. I cut up four good sized chicken breasts into chunks and used the pitcher. Using the Ninja gave me a finer (careful not to make too fine) ground chicken that wound up make twice the chicken salad that it would have been chopping it up by hand!

  23. Carol, chicken salad was one of the things they served at the preview that I liked the best. I like it either really chunky or really fine, but it’s so tedious to do really fine that I usually do the chunky. Well, until I got the Ninja.

  24. This is a great product, I’d never trade it for anything else. I first saw it just like everyone else, on a late night infomercial. Forgot all about it months later til I saw it at Bed Bath and Beyond. Immediately bought without hesitation. Have made numerous smoothies with it and it’s awesome. Clean up is a snap and yes do watch out for the blades when cleaning up, I cut myself just by touching it gently. My favorite recipe that I created, Oreo smoothies. Big hit.

  25. I love my Ninja Master Prep.
    I use it for every thing,its great.

  26. Scott Anderson says:

    I bought one of these based on Drew’s advice over on the IWETHEY forums. It’s everything he says it is. My wife uses it to make smoothies every morning, much better than the old-stylee blender. She also had the same garlic experience with it the other day. I’ll have to point out the mad cheese shredding skillz to her too.

  27. I love the Ninja. My husband got it for me on mothers day and I have to say even he was skeptical at first. We had a food mill that he loved to use to make mashed potatoes, well it broke and two weeks ago my hand mixer broke. Well today at his request he asked me to make shepherds pie. Every one knows you need real potatoes to make this. His question was how was I going to make the potatoes smooth. Well I started mashing them by hand with a potatoe masher and once they were some what smooth I put the rest believe it or not right into the Ninja. now I had to do it via vour scoops at a time because they were so thick but believe me it was worth every ounce of time because I have never ever seen such smooth potatoes. Any one who buys this it’s worth every penny that you spend on it.

  28. Well, you introduced me to the Ninja, I did the research, and it was mine for my birthday. It sure is a lot better than the blender for pureeing the vegies for my dog’s food (home cooked). I used to have to put them through the meat grinder, THEN into the blender, and I was still limited to very small portions of blending. Then I put the chicken for my corn chicken chowder into it, and it was perfect. It processes the food very evenly. Thanks for the intro.

  29. Purchased the Ninja 1100 online. Love it but was disappointed that the strawbery ice cream recipe was not included. I know they used milk/cream, sugar/sweeten & frozen strawberries but how much. That’s the main reason I purchased the Ninja but love the drinks

    • Maggie: on 3/14/10, Drew published a link for the ice cream. My Ninja didn’t come with the recipe book (though the box said there was one), but I downloaded it free from QVC and looked at the recipes on

      My 2 cents: My mom bought me the Ninja Master Prep (not pro) as a gift, and I LOVE IT!!! I made lemonade-blueberry-mint and lemonade-strawberry sorbets by freezing lemonade into ice cubes, and then adding fresh fruit and mint and some honey. I recommend only using 1 frozen item (lemonade OR fruit) so that you can get a creamier, rather than drier, consistency. Sometimes I had to add a little water because it was too dry (snow-like), but it turned out delicious! I’ve also used rum instead of water for a blended cocktail. I saw a video for banana-only “ice cream,” which was similar to what I’ve tried. I’ve also made strawberry-banana yogurt with plain 2c yogurt, honey, 1/2 lb fresh strawberries and 1 banana. Much better than store bought.

      I’m not a master chef by FAR, but I love the Ninja because it makes prep easier and faster. And, cleanup is super fast–and I don’t even own a dishwasher. I immediately rinse the blades and lid off with warm water so I never have to scrub them, just gently soap off with a soapy sponge. Very simple!

  30. Mary Izral says:

    I have been shredding by hand zucchini, now I’m wondering if I could of been using my Ninja? Please let me know. Thank you

  31. Can the ninja make ground meat? Lets just say bacon for example?

    • The Ninja (my version, anyway, I don’t know about newer models) only has a single speed: ridiculously fast. It would turn meat into paste before you got to anything useful for ground meat recipes.

      If I were going to try, I’d go with small portions at a time, chopped into small pieces, and frozen. By which time it’s probably more effort than it’s worth.

  32. I need a bread recipe for the ninja could someone email me some at please

  33. i use a lot of tomatos for many recipies but when chopping them they turn to mush. Can i freeze them before placing them in the ninja to allow a clean chop?

    • Tomatoes don’t stand up well to freezing. They’d probably turn to mush just from freezing and thawing.

      As much as I love my Ninja, it’s not good for dicing. It runs so fast everything tends to go straight to “fine mince” almost instantly.

  34. Hey i was wondering if you can make a frosting mixture and cake batter in the ninja?

    thanks joe!

    • Hmm, I’ve never tried since I’ve also got the Kitchenaid stand mixer, which is perfect for those. Next time my wife is making a cake I’ll ask her to give it a try.

      My guess, though, is that the frosting wouldn’t work because it wouldn’t all get down into the bottom where the blades are. The batter might work but over-beating flour tends to make it tough, so I wouldn’t try it unless I had cake flour, which is lower in gluten.


  1. […] to be chopped. Jenn did them by hand, because she didn’t want them totally crushed, like the Ninja would do to […]

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