A blender is a versatile and indispensable kitchen appliance. It helps you introduce fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet. It also makes the preparation of other drinks, dishes, and desserts a whole lot easier. You can make smoothies, cakes, soups, baby food, purees, as well as grind coffee and nuts. You can even grind your own flour! The possibilities are endless.
There is a vast range of blender models on the market today. After seeing the options you may wonder things like “where to buy blenders?” or “what are the best brands?” We hope this article will serve as a helpful guide to buy the best blender for your needs.
Motor speed and torque
Many blender makers typically specify the blender’s motor speed in watts, and some in horsepower (1 horsepower is equivalent to 746 watts). Blender models range from 300 watts to as high as 1,500 watts. So it is safe to assume that blenders with higher motor speeds perform better than their lower counterparts, or at least this is something that manufacturers are trying to drum into consumers’ minds.
However, blender reviews by the consumers themselves contradict the manufacturers’ claims. There have been tests conducted on a wide range of blenders and they conclude that a blender’s higher wattage doesn’t necessarily mean better overall performance.
You must remember that a blender’s wattage indicates the power that is consumed by the motor. However, a power generated by the blender motor is what spells a big difference in their performance.
Another important factor to consider is the motor blades’ torque — the force that causes something to spin around the centre. The higher the torque of the motor blades has, the less likely they will strain or get stuck when they meet resistance. If a blender can crush tougher items like pineapple chunks, root vegetables, nuts and even ice cubes without straining, then you know that it has pretty great torque.
Apart from the motor speed and torque, you may also consider buying blenders by looking at the jar. Here are the main three types of blender jars, along with their pros and cons:
Glass – A lot of consumers prefer glass blender jars because aside from looking pretty, it is also more stable. A glass jar is more resistant to scratches and discolouration, and it is also less likely to absorb the odors of its contents. However, it is more prone to breakage.
Polycarbonate plastic – Unlike glass, a polycarbonate plastic will not break (in case you knock it over). It is also lightweight, and its level markings are said to be easier to read when measuring ingredients. However, plastic blender jars tend to scratch easily and are more prone to absorb food odors. They are also harder to clean than either glass or stainless steel.
Stainless steel – A stainless steel blender jar looks more sleek and modern, and it is also sturdy. However, you can’t see the contents inside, so you have to stop and see if everything’s blended or liquefied. Plus, stainless steel blenders tend to be more expensive, and usually do not have the measurement markings like the glass and plastic blenders do.
Controls and Functions
Choosing a blender depends on your needs and preferences. If you want a basic blender, then the three-speed and pulse/turbo functions will do fine.
But if you want to get the most out of your kitchen experience, you might as well buy a blender with more controls and functions. Some models offer up to seven speeds (or even more) which allows you to do more things such as chop, grind, liquefy, mix, and whip.
Choosing a type of blender will depend upon several factors such as personal preferences, versatility, ease of cleaning and maintenance, and the space it takes up in your kitchen.
Countertop blenders fall into several sub-types:
Personal blender – This is the most common of all the countertop blenders. Personal blenders are gaining popularity amongst students, professionals and sportspersons. It is not made for one specific purpose (like a smoothie blender), but it can do a lot of things such as liquefy, chop, grind, and more. Plus, it is usually inexpensive and easily available in different models.
When it’s about personal blenders, Nutribullet takes a significant share in the market. While it’s compact and convenient to use, it is also very powerful and features a 900-watt motor. The extractor blades with their Pro’s exclusive Cyclonic Action turn any hard ingredients into smoothies and pastes in seconds.
Tribest is a blender worth its price. It is a slim and sleek shaped blender with a 200-watt motor that can blend ice, nuts, seeds and grains easily. Tribest includes two cups of 16 oz each which are sufficient for single serving only. Since it is highly compact, it is ideal for people who travel often and don’t want to compromise on their daily smoothie dose.
Smoothie blender – Smoothie blenders usually have taps to pour your smoothie ingredients straight into the jar, even while the blender is running. It also has specific buttons for crushing fruits, vegetables, and ice. Most smoothie blenders come with a stirrer to help mix your smoothies. However, its functions are quite limited compared to a personal blender’s.
Blendtec is a 1560 watt blender specially designed to make creamy, thick smoothies. It comes with automatic settings for pre-programming, 5-speed manual control and a pulse button to adjust the blending as per the ingredients. Unlike other blenders, you don’t have to chop the ingredients into small chunks because the stainless steel winged blades will do all the work. Add some class to it and the LCD screen is there to indicate the blending time.
Breville is a combination of power and speed. It’s a modern design blender that makes no noise while efficiently blending smoothies in large batches. The front panel of the machine has an LCD display with a timer that indicates speed and pre-programmed settings. The one-touch versatility offers simple operations and all part of the blender are auto-clean for frequent use.
Cocktail blender – Like the smoothie blender, the cocktail blender also has limited functions, but it can perform as efficiently as the personal blender.
If you are looking for restaurant like smoothies and cocktails at home, add to your kitchen this Margaritaville Key West Frozen Concoction Maker. With an extra-large ice reservoir, Margaritaville can make up to 2.5 litres of cocktails and blends at a time. The blender has a moderate power of 450 watts and all the parts of the machine are dishwasher safe.
Heavy-duty blender – It has a more powerful motor which makes it able to chop bigger and tougher ingredients. It also comes with more controls and functions which makes preparing food faster and more efficient. But because of its power, durability, and versatility as well as its size, a heavy-duty blender is usually expensive, and not every ordinary household kitchen can afford it. Therefore, it is more suited for commercial use. Many restaurants, cafes, and other food industries utilize the heavy-duty blender.
This all-rounder heavy-duty blender by Cleanblend can make shakes, desserts, ice-creams, juices, smoothies, salad dressings and a lot more in a jiffy. It is a handy replacement to many kitchen appliances and can easily work for large batches of ingredients. With 1800 watt powerful battery, the 8-blade system ensures that every ingredient is blended in the desired consistency.
Waring professional blender is powerful, durable and large in capacity to accommodate up to 65 ounces of liquid. Since this is a professional blender, it is heavy in weight and you can’t change its placement every now and then, therefore it comes with a sturdy base and non-slip handle for safe and convenient use.
Immersion blenders – Immersion blenders also called hand-held blenders, wand blenders, or stick blenders have gradually become a useful innovation to the countertop blenders. Immersion Blenders are usually categorized as “small range” blenders and appear to be handy yet highly useful kitchen appliance.
Unlike countertop blenders, immersion blenders do not have a stationary body and a jar. An immersion blender’s rotating motors, located at the end of the shaft, do the job of mixing, grinding, chopping, and emulsifying ingredients.
The immersion blender usually comes with no container of its own (although some units have it), it can be immersed into containers of any shape, size, and material. Have ingredients that are too much, too large, too cold, or too hot to pour into a blender jar? You can pour them into a large plastic bowl and let the immersion blender do the job of blending and liquefying.
Immersion blenders are available in corded and cordless (battery-type) models. They are lightweight, handy, mobile, easy to clean and maintain, and take up less space in your cupboard. However, they tend to be more expensive than most countertop blenders.
Bamix hand blender is one of the best all-rounder options for you. Manufactured in Switzerland, it features a powerful 200 watt AC motor with 2-speed dials. It works great for blending, chopping, slicing as it has four interchangeable blades included. It’s a quiet machine that gives less vibration and comes with an ergonomic handle for comfortable and extended usage.
Cuisineart is a trusted name in kitchen appliances and their products are meant to be innovative and convenient. CSB-300 is a rechargeable hand blender that gives you no hassle of long cords. It has a run-time of 20 minutes per charge which means averagely you may be required to charge this blender once a week. It comes with 5-speed settings and additional features such as an electric knife, stainless steel 9.5 inches long shaft, a 3-cup chopper and a blade guard.
Chefman is for those who want a pocket-friendly hand blender, one that doesn’t cost a kidney but also works well and won’t need replacement soon. You might get attracted to Chefman because of the 15 color variations but it has a lot more to offer. It comes with a 300-watt motor and a soft, rubber made a handle that is ergonomically designed. The handle features two soft push buttons for speed control that can crush everything you can possibly imagine. Unlike many other blenders, Chefman is easy to clean and dishwasher safe.
Once you know what you want in a blender, it won’t hurt to also look for the best kitchen blender discounts at stores near you or at online stores.