Top 10 Rated Blenders
By Brittany Rowland
As we chose our top 10 blenders, we had several considerations in mind, such as:
1. Blending jar capacity and material
2. Sturdiness of construction
3. Ease of use and cleaning
4. Number of controls, preprogrammed settings, and pulse option
6. How easily it crushes ices and large food items
7. Resistance to leaks and spills
The best blenders have a motor powerful enough to chop and pulverize tough foods quickly without overheating or producing an odor. The containers should be strong enough to resist cracking or scratching but lightweight enough to hold and pour easily. The best blades are stainless steel, which cut through ice easily and don’t rust or become dull. If you know what you expect from a blender and how much you plan to use it, you can find a model with the right capacity and functions to suit your needs. See the blender comparison and ratings below with a link to the full review of each.
With a powerful 3 horsepower direct-drive motor, this Blendtec blender thoroughly blends and crushes food with stainless steel blades moving at 29,000 rpm. One of the most convenient features about this blender is that it automatically shuts off at the end of its preprogrammed cycles so you can leave the room while it’s running… more
Another powerful blender from Blendtec with an astounding 96-ounce pitcher, this model holds up to three quarts of whatever you want to mix in it: soups, dressings, smoothies, milkshakes, etc … more
Brushed stainless steel finish
With a sleek, brushed stainless steel finish that resists fingerprint smudges, this Vitamix blender is handsome enough to sit permanently on the countertop. Its powerful blades and horsepower motor … more
Black with brushed aluminum plating
Like many heavy-duty blenders on the market today, this Vitamix model is loud on the highest setting, but it almost doesn’t matter because it thoroughly mixes food in just a minute or two with the 2+ horsepower motor. The jar’s design creates a vortex that pulls food down… more
Colors: Black, White, Tangerine, Red, Blue, Cinnamon, Chrome
Available in a variety of fun splashy colors, from tangerine orange to cinnamon to willow blue, this 5-speed blender from KitchenAid blends, purees, grinds, and crushes effectively with its 0.9 horsepower motor. The controls are clearly labeled and simple to operate, and the polycarbonate jar… more
Brushed nickel finish
An inexpensive (at $39.50) blender that nevertheless delivers fine mixing and crushing performance, this Oster model has a powerful motor and sharp stainless steel blades that cut ice as fine as snow … more
Color: Stainless Steel
A handsome professional bar blender from Waring, this model rests on a wide, sturdy metal base. The chrome coating looks shiny and sophisticated, and the blending power is strong to match. Smooth-running … more
Black and Stainless Steel
A rugged die-cast metal base and clear copolymer container make this Cuisinart blender a very attractive countertop piece. More importantly, it effectively mixes, crushes, and pulses food in the powerful vortex that forms inside the capacious 64-ounce jar. The control panel is incredibly simple… more
Black and Stainless Steel
A sleek stainless steel blender like the kind found in bars, this Waring model has a modern, sophisticated appeal and a powerful, effective motor to go with it. Its two speeds handle all your mixing, chopping … more
If you enjoy your daily smoothie or power drink and don’t have the need for a heavy-duty, behemoth blender, then you’ll appreciate this personal blender from Hamilton Beach. The 14-ounce blending jar, big enough to hold a large drink, transforms into a convenient portable cup you can take with you on the go … more
Blenders Buying Guide
What Features To Look For in a Blender
A blender is a wonderful modern convenience, an appliance that instantly mixes, chops, grinds, and purees various foods into a smooth blend. For the health-conscious and people who like quick, easy recipes, a blender is a real boon. Never has it been easier to make a delicious and nutritious smoothie of fresh fruits or vegetables. It makes getting kids to eat their veggies easier, too.
A blender’s purpose doesn’t end with smoothies or milkshakes, either. You can mix together soups, cheese dips, sauces, salad dressings, and more. With a little creativity and daring, you can spice up those drab leftovers, use up those odd items in the refrigerator, and save on eating out.
While a blender can save you a lot of time and effort in the kitchen, it’s important to pick a high-quality model that will perform its blending duties well, hold up over a long period of steady use, and not be too difficult to keep clean. There are all kinds of blenders on the market with various features, some running hundreds of dollars and others as low as 20 bucks. It’s up to you to consider the features you really need in a blender to make it perform the way you want and figure out how much you’re willing to spend. Here’s a beginner’s guide to the most important features you should look for in a blender.
How large is your family, and do you intend to make large portions of fruit mixes, soup, or sauces for friends or company? There are blenders that feature large-capacity blending containers, some as big as 32, 64, or even 96 ounces. These are capacious enough to hold entire quarts of food mixes.
On the other hand, if you’re just one person and you’re looking for something simple and small to make single-serve fruit smoothies or milkshakes, there are personal blender models as small as 14 ounces designed just for that purpose.
Cleaning your blender will be a fairly regular task. Often you can simply pour in some hot water and a little soap, run the blender, and then rinse it out for a quick, easy clean. However, it’s also good to give the blender a more thorough washing periodically. Food and gunk can get trapped beneath the blades otherwise, leading to bad smells and bacteria growth. Being able to remove the blades makes cleaning the container incredibly easier. If that’s not possible, then make sure the blender pitcher is safe to go in the dishwasher so it can be cleaned and sanitized.
Some high-end blender models offer multiple speeds, which can be very convenient and versatile. However, don’t pay too much extra for such features unless you really need them. Blenders with two to three speeds, from low to high, are just as effective at getting the job done and won’t cost an arm and a leg.
Jar Material and Shape
The blending jar’s shape affects how well it churns food. A tapered container will create a better vortex that pulls food down toward the blades and back up again, leaving no parts unmixed. The container’s material will determine how well it holds up over time. Plastic ones are generally less durable; they can scratch easily and develop odors or discoloration. Glass is more solid, but also heavier and prone to breaking if it’s accidentally dropped. A material called polycarbonate seems to be the happy medium: It’s lighter than glass but sturdy and shatterproof.
As you’re browsing through possible blender choices, take a look at the buttons on the console. Do they look simple to use or unnecessarily complicated? Remember that buttons can get food crumbs stuck in the cracks, so consider a model with touchpads or dials to set the controls.
The pulse button on a blender is your friend. It delivers fast, effective results in light bursts, which prevents your food from becoming mushier than you want it. The pulse feature is also great for crushing ice.
It seems that many of the models with the most powerful motors also have the loudest operation. You may feel that noisiness is only to be expected from a blender and not that big a deal, but to be fair you don’t want an ear-piercing model, either. You don’t want to pay for an expensive model only to not use it to its full potential because the decibel level is too obnoxious. Sound enclosures are available to help muffle the shrill noise, but those can be pricey, too.
If the blender is particularly large and bulky, it will probably become a permanent fixture on your countertop, too large or too cumbersome to fit in a cabinet. If that’s the case, then be sure that it has a visually appealing style and matches the colors and design of your kitchen. Some brands even offer fun bright colors like red and blue to add some pizazz to your décor.
Do your homework before springing for the priciest model at the store. Read customer reviews to get an idea of how well a model performs and consider the mid-range blenders that offer a lot of value for a more reasonable price.
|Brittany Rowland researches new developments in Appliances, Kitchen and CE products features with a vigor to which few would aspire… but someone has to do it. See more about Brittany|
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