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Perhaps you’re still julienning with a chef’s knife. If that’s true, and you’re not an expert cook, it probably takes you 15 minutes to do what a mandoline could do in two minutes flat. Mandolines make quick work of potatoes and zucchini or can help you get a salad whipped up for a not-sad desk lunch. But knowing which mandoline is best for you can be tricky.
Of course, having exposed blades means mandolines are inherently a little dangerous to have around. While many have handguards, more than a few of those are somewhat ineffective. One way to keep safe in the kitchen is to simply fold a clean kitchen towel and use that to protect your fingers while you glide the food along the slicer.
To figure out which blades produce even slices and the handguards that are actually hazardous, Lindsey Danis tested our picks in her kitchen and updated this list. The home tests included slicing bell peppers, potatoes, and radishes and rating how well the mandoline handled them. She also tested for set-up and the final clean-up. In the end, the Benriner Mandoline Slicer topped the list with the high-quality of its blades.
From the easiest for beginners to what the professionals use, here are our recommendations for the best mandoline slicers.
Best Overall: Benriner Mandoline Slicer
What We Love: Easy to store, four sharp blades, what professionals use
What We Don't Love: Impractical handguard
A Benriner is a given in a professional kitchen. In fact, Joel Reiss, chef/owner of Who’s Jac W.? in New York City, cites Benriner mandolines as his favorites, saying that it features the highest “blade quality and slicing precision.” The Benriner Mandoline Slicer is economically priced, tough, and easy to use. The handle doesn’t stick out, and it doesn’t take up a lot of space—in fact, it stacks nicely on a shelf or in a tub, making it a good pick for small kitchens.
Made from BPA-free plastic, this can slice basically anything that a mandoline would slice, from fresh tomatoes to daikon. It does straight, fine, medium, and coarse cuts, and can handle smaller items with its handguard (though many find the handguard lacking and use a clean kitchen towel instead). This is a reliable and efficient performer, provided you’re aware of the risks and use it mindfully. "I've had my share of Benriner run-ins (and witnessed countless others) while working in kitchens," says our tester, Lindsey.
According to Reiss, the Benriner’s best quality is the fact that its "blade is actually a razor and can slice ingredients really exactly." To use it safely, you’ll want to keep the stainless steel blade sharp or replace it after a few months of heavy kitchen use, ideally when you notice it struggles to cut cleanly. The nonskid rubber base works well with stainless steel counters, and it’s wide at almost 4.5 inches. Throw it into the dishwasher when you’re done, or just rinse it off and dry it thoroughly.
Dimensions: 12.75 x 4.45 inches | Weight: 7 ounces
Best Overall, Runner-Up: Oxo Good Grips Chef's Mandoline Slicer 2.0
What We Love: Four blades, multiple thickness settings, dishwasher safe
What We Don't Love: Slightly difficult to switch out blades, handguard is clunky and doesn’t work well
This OXO Good Grips V-Blade Mandoline Slicer is a best friend for the high-volume cook, but it also handily churns out neat, versatile cuts for the occasional one. When opened, it's propped up at an angle which helps with leverage, and the holder keeps your fingers safe.
This OXO mandoline comes in four settings–1.5, 3, 4.5, and 6 millimeters–and comes with four blades, including straight slice, french fry, crinkle cut, and julienne. In between cuts, the blades are stored inside the runway. This makes the mandoline somewhat clunky when folded down, but the advantage is, you won’t be fumbling around your kitchen looking for the other blades because they’re tucked inside. The included handguard, which resembled an air hockey puck, was a disappointment in the home kitchen. It was clumsy to hold and caused some veggies to fall apart.
Since slicing softer foods like boiled eggs, tomatoes and persimmons can be tricky with a regular straight-blade mandoline, you’ll want a v-blade mandoline. It guides the soft food into the slicer, providing two entrance points for cutting. The OXO mandoline also had the finest setting of all the ones we tested, churning out paper-thin radish slices with ease.
You should hand wash the blades, but the rest of the mandoline is dishwasher safe. We love that this has a textured surface that makes it harder for food to stain or cling to it though, which means you won’t have to scrub it prior to the dishwasher. Overall, for comfort, price, and durability, this mandoline is a star, once you get used to switching out the blades.
Dimensions (LxWxH): 15.5 x 5.5 x 6 inches | Weight: 2.5 pounds
Best Budget: Kyocera Advanced Ceramic Adjustable Vegetable Slicer Set
What We Love: Durable ceramic blade, four thickness settings, useful handguard
What We Don't Love: Small handguard caused veggies to fall apart when sliced
It can definitely be scary the first time you use a mandoline slicer. For the uninitiated, many mandolines are just an extremely sharp blade housed in plastic, and you can easily cut your hand without a handguard. While Kyocera’s mandoline offers a slicing guard, it’s unfortunately too small for the job. When testing it on a radish, the slices came out messy and uneven. To get the thin, even slices that a mandoline promises, I had to ditch the handguard. I’m not a novice, and I almost got cut when using this one. Still, I’d recommend it as a starter mandoline.
First, Kyocera's mandoline was the most comfortable to hold. It also has some helpful safety features, like corner notches that secure on top of a bowl, meaning the mandoline is less likely to slip while you’re using it, and an easy-to-use, if small, handguard. The ceramic blade is made in Japan from Kyocera's proprietary zirconia material that stays super sharp for longer than steel blades and is resistant to acids.
Our favorite feature, though, is the adjustable dial that lets you choose from four different thicknesses for your slicing: 0.5 millimeters, 1.3 millimeters, 2 millimeters, and 3 millimeters. The thinnest setting yielded uneven results during testing, but as we went up in thickness, this mandoline performed more consistently.
Dimensions: 11 x 4 inches | Weight: 3.8 ounces
Related: The Best Vegetable Peelers
Best for Kids: Joie Mini Mandoline Slicer
What We Love: Lightweight, thin slices, can be used by teens, easy to pack
What We Don't Love: Only one setting
Tiny top chefs who are just donning their toques should consider the Joie Mini Mandoline Slicer. For smaller hands, a smaller tool is a wise choice. This lightweight, mini mandoline has a holding handle for the veggies, so your child’s hand will never actually come close to the blade.
Made of aluminum and super compact at only 2.5 inches wide, the Joie Mini Mandoline really works, but be aware that larger veggies like huge cucumbers and daikon radishes won’t work on this little version. The slices come out paper-thin, but there's only one thickness setting. In a pinch or on a camping trip (trust us, a mini mandoline is easier than packing a cutting board), an adult can use it, too.
Dimensions (LxWxH): 8.5 x 2.5 x 2 inches | Weight: 3 ounces
Best for Safe Cutting: Dash Safe Slice Mandoline
What We Love: Ergonomic and safe design, multiple settings
What We Don't Love: Everything has to fit into the feeder tube
With special features that make it safer for everyone, this Dash mandoline is not your standard mandoline. It’s easy to set up and easy to use, and it actually folds down pretty small for storage when it’s not in use.
The biggest feature Dash designed into this mandoline is a special feeder tube where you place your food. Providing slight pressure with a food holder, you use your other hand for the spring-loaded slicer that automatically pops back up after every cut. At no time does the cook’s hand ever go near the blade, making this the best pick for those who want to make extra sure there are no accidents.
The minus here, of course, is that everything needs to fit into that feeder tube. Thankfully, it’s generously sized and can certainly fit red potatoes, larger carrots, and cucumbers. Onions and larger potatoes, like russet potatoes, may need to be cut in half. Once your veggies are prepped, you can choose from slices of 1 to 8 millimeters in thickness while also producing julienne, matchstick, and dicing cuts.
The smaller the veggie, the more even the slice in our experience testing this mandoline. Potato slices came out unevenly, and required a lot of pressure on the hand pump to cut. Bell pepper cut evenly at first but then began falling apart from being caught on the blade. Smaller radishes were cut uniformly. A small brush is included for blade cleanup, and it’s backed by a 1-year manufacturer warranty.
Dimensions (LxWxH): 11 x 4.7 x 14 inches | Weight: 2.1 pounds
Related: The Best Food Dehydrators
The Benriner Mandoline Slicer (view at Amazon) is the best option for slicing both soft foods and hardy vegetables, just be mindful of the blade. If this is your first mandoline, you should pick up the Kyocera Advanced Ceramic Adjustable Mandoline (view at Amazon).
What Are the Other Options?
Progressive International Prepworks Adjust-A-Slice and Julienne Hand-Held Mandoline: Our former budget pick didn't hold up when put to the test. It was easy to put together, but the steel blade was weak and slices came out uneven. Additionally, the hand guard was not comfortable and negatively impacted performance.
Bron Coucke Original Stainless Steel Classic Chef's Mandoline: This former splurge pick was so cumbersome to use that our tester gave up for fear of breaking the mandoline. The hand guard wouldn't function and kept getting caught on the crank, plus it's rare to have even cuts since the blade has to be set manually. Very serious cooks and professionals might be interested, but home cooks should try other options.
What to Look for When Buying a Mandoline
Since mandolines are used for fine slicing, their blades must be thin and sharp in order to do their jobs. Some models come with sliders that allow you to customize the thickness of your slices, which proves handy when you’re using the same mandoline for different elements of a dish. The materials most commonly used for mandoline-blade purposes are stainless steel and ceramic. Both can be honed into a narrow and sharp blade, and both have particular advantages. For instance, stainless steel blades are easy to sharpen and replace, and they’re also dishwasher-safe. Ceramic blades can’t be sharpened with traditional household knife sharpeners, but these blades are much stronger than stainless steel blades, and their toughness reduces (or even eliminates) any need for maintenance.
Many mandoline models include safety features that prevent users from nicking their fingers with the mega-sharp blade. Such features might include handguards to shield the fingers from the blade, feeder tubes to keep you from ever getting your fingers close to the blade, or notches that clamp onto bowls to lower the risk of slippage. Our tester did note that several of the handguards that came with mandolines felt cumbersome and difficult to handle, so it’s smart to also keep a kitchen towel handy to protect your fingers while sliding food over the mandoline blade.
Many mandoline models with either stainless steel or ceramic blades can be cleaned using a dishwasher, while some require handwashing. Handwashing gives the washer greater control over the cleaning process, which can prove useful in terms of the smaller curves and nooks of the device. However, handwashing eaves your fingers vulnerable to accidental cuts from the sharp blade. If safety is a concern, we recommend picking up a dishwasher-safe mandoline.
Can you slice meat on a mandoline?
If you’re seeking paper-thin slices of roast beef or ham, then a mandoline can accomplish that goal. That said, mandolines aren’t nearly as efficient as dedicated meat slicers, due to their comparatively small surface area. If you’re determined to cut meat with a mandoline, be sure to chill the meat before slicing; the cold temperature will provide you with greater control over the slicing.
Why do some mandolines have V-shaped blades while others have diagonal ones?
Mandoline blades come in three shapes: straight, diagonal, and V-shaped. Straight blades, which are commonly associated with French-style mandolines, are the most challenging to maneuver; sliding food along these blades requires more force, so they work best for firmer fruits and vegetables. Diagonal blades, which are regularly found on Japanese-style mandolines, don’t need as much sliding pressure as straight blades, so more delicate produce can be cleanly sliced on these mandolines. If you’re seeking the maximum amount of stability and efficiency, then a V-shaped blade will deliver on both fronts. These mandolines use two diagonal blades, which allow for fast and tidy slicing of everything from tomatoes to potatoes.
Why Trust Simply Recipes?
Dakota Kim is a freelance writer and former restaurant owner who has tested many cookware items both for articles and for her restaurant. Since leaving restaurant life, she misses her commercial slicer and finds that her OXO Good Grips V-Blade Mandoline Slicer is a winner for slicing tomatoes, while also easily handling potatoes for her air fryer chips.
Lindsey Danis is a former professional cook and a food writer for retail and trade publications. Based in the Hudson Valley, when she's not in the kitchen, you can find her hiking, kayaking, or traveling.
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