How To Choose A Blender For Your Needs
A thick and velvety smoothie is one of the most difficult things you can demand from a blender. You’re expecting four tiny blades powered by a motor no bigger than a coffee mug to make protein powder, frozen fruit, ice, fibrous greens, and gloppy peanut butter into soft serve in a minute.
So rather than asking about the best blender for smoothies, the better question to ask is:
What’s the best blender?
…Because if a blender can turn out juice-bar-quality smoothies day after day, it will most likely liquefy almost anything else you’d want to with ease.
Of course, you don’t necessarily need the newest, most expensive, or most powerful blender on the market.
But you do need to find the best smoothie blender, you’re looking for one that crushes ice into a drinkable slush, cut through frozen fruits, and pulverize even the stringiest produce into a smooth liquid.
These are the best blenders for smoothies and thick protein shakes, based on performance, function, value, and reviews I studied from everywhere – whew!
Best Blenders for Protein Shakes and Smoothies
Vitamix Professional Series 750 #VM0158A
This super buzzy blender lives up to the hype.
The Vitamix 750 has a large, 64-ounce clear plastic jar with a nonslip handle to facilitate pouring, and comes with a tamper to help process thick mixtures like nut butters and frozen desserts.
The control panel has 10 speeds and five pre-programmed settings, allowing you to make a variety of blended beverages exactly the way you want them (read: not a single strawberry seed or fleck of spinach will be left behind).
This blender has fantastic reviews everywhere, with on Amazon customer raving:
“Fantastic, top of the line, consumer Vitamix blender!! This great looking machine has the most powerful, yet quietest motor Vitamix offers. Extremely functional, durable, easy to use/clean, and looks great on your counter. You will NOT be disappointed with this blender!”
Breville The Boss #BBL910XL
The Breville Boss is state-of-the-art, high-performance blender. It comes with almost every conceivable feature: 12 speeds, auto-clean, an LCD display, and five pre-programmed, one-touch settings.
Its claim to fame is having the world’s first “Green Smoothie” button, but The Breville Boss does more than just pulverizing spinach — anything you need to blend; this baby will do it!
This is a super video demonstrating The Boss, featuring British Celebrity chef, Heston Blumenthal.
Blendtec Designer 725
The Blendtec Designer 725 comes with a 1725-watt motor — one of the most powerful of any in this price range.
Its control panel has a smooth touchscreen for easy cleaning, and delivers blender usage data in addition to quirky feedback and (no joke) hashtag suggestions.
You can choose from six pre-programmed settings or up to 100 manual speeds, providing ultimate control and precision when blending.
If that’s not enough, Blendtec’s SmartBlend technology senses problems that arise while blending, such as air pockets or overheating, and suggests solutions.
One review said of the Breville Designer 725:
“3.8hp motor… It will stay on the counter to make oatmeal in the morning shake for lunch soup for dinner and sorbet for dessert… It does it all… The best blender I own…“
Cuisinart Inverted Blender #CBB-1200
The Cuisinart Inverted blender gets its name because it has a plastic jar that’s wide at the bottom and narrow at the top.
The Cuisinart Inverted Blender is a good-looking unit with a 2.0-horsepower motor. The advantage of the carafe’s unique inverted shape is that it creates a vortex that pushes contents back down toward the blades (eliminating the need to manually push foods down).
A speed dial offers good control over a wide variety of tasks, and a pulse button provides a high-powered boost of extra speed for blending even the thickest textures with ease.
Oster My Blend Blender #BLSTPB-WGN
The Oster My Blend blender is my top recommendation for making smoothies or protein shakes to take on the go.
The Oster My Blend is strikingly stylish addition to the Oster family of blenders.
Users like the sleek, industrial design of the stylish 20 ounce BPA-free plastic travel sport bottle. Drinks can be blended directly in the sport bottle, meaning no extra dishes to do (the bottle is dishwasher safe).
It’s available in orange, pink, green and blue. The sport bottle also comes with a carry hook and lid storage.
A powerful 250-watt motor turns ice and frozen fruit into your favorite smoothies, health shakes, and diet drinks.
When in use, you replace the blade with the drinking lid, so you don’t have to drink with the blade still in the bottom.
Vitamix S-Series #S30
If you’ve been lusting after a Vitamix but lack the necessary counter space, check out the more compact S-Series line from the popular brand.
The Vitamix S30 Personal blender is the newest addition to the Vitamix lineup and their first entry in the S-Series (personal) blender category. This new blender is much smaller in terms of size and horsepower, but is priced very closely to its full-sized counterparts.
The package includes two jars, 20-ounce and 40-ounce, both of which sit atop a six-inch base.
Since the largest container available for the Vitamix S30 is only 40 ounces, this blender is clearly built for someone making small or single sized portions, those with limited counter space, or the traveler who just can’t leave their Vitamix at home. The containers are dishwasher safe.
If you only need to blend for yourself, the Vitamix S30 is a great choice. Both containers are very small and really only sized for single servings.
NutriBullet Pro 900
The NutriBullet Pro 900 Series is easy to use, and includes two different extra-wide blender cups, two blades, two stay-fresh lids, and one to-go lid. Plus, it comes with a cookbook and pocket nutrition guide.
The NutriBullet PRO features a powerful 900-watt motor with unique extraction blades and exclusive cyclonic action to break down, pulverize, and emulsify whole fruits and vegetables better than any standard blender or juicer, creating silky-smooth nutrient-extracted beverages that nourish your system from the inside out.
Its compact size and simple assembly fit onto any countertop, while its cups, blades, and accessories rinse clean under the tap or in the dishwasher.
The NutriBullet PRO is easy to use and easy to clean, and comes with membership to a recipe site that features over 700 smoothie recipes and direct access to Registered Dietitians!
The 13-Piece Set includes:
- High-toque Power Base
- 1 Emulsifying Extractor Blade
- 2 32oz Colossal Cups
- 2 Flip-Top Lids
- 2 Handled Lip Rings
- 2 Comfort Lip Rings
- 1 Blasting for Optimum Health Recipe Book
- 1 User Manual –
- 1 Pocket Nutritionist
Oster Versa Performance Blender #BLSTVB
The Oster Versa Performance Blender has a powerful 1400 watt motor, and boasts an eight-cup BPA-free clear plastic jar with sleek red design elements and a black and red base.
- Gives you a mid-priced option but still has a 7 year warranty
- Comes with a strong 1,400 motor
- The shorter jar doesn’t require much storage space
- Long-lasting, durable metal drive
- The cover has an opening that will allow you to add ingredients
- This machine will not be able to mix dough
- Not made in the USA
- When you push the tamper all the way it will hit the blade so you have to be careful
- Hard to read markings
In spite of a few drawbacks, several review sites found the Oster Versa to be was one of the best-tested blenders overall, smashing through coffee beans, pureeing soup, and churning out thick and creamy milkshakes in practically no time.
Plus, it comes with a food processor bowl and blade, two 20-ounce sport bottles, a tamper accessory, and a recipe booklet.
Vitamix A3500 Ascent Series #VM0185
The powerhouse of the Vitamix blender family, the A3500 blender is intelligently designed inside and out.
It offers five smart program settings that automatically detect the size of the container in use, so foods are perfectly blended according to volume and consistency.
A built-in programmable timer can be set to stop the blender when processing is complete, so you don’t have to monitor its progress.
Features of the Vitamix A3500 Blender:
- Five program settings—Smoothies, Hot Soups, Dips & Spreads, Frozen Desserts and Self-Cleaning—automatically adjust times and speeds for the container selected and stop the blender when done.
- Compatible with Self-Detect containers, so you can create multiple batches from the same machine—then store, serve, or transport (available Spring 2017).
- Programmable Timer shows blend time countdown and can be set to automatically stop when processing is complete.
- Tamper presses thick or frozen mixtures towards blade, so you never have to stop to scrape sides down.
- Blades are laser-cut from hardened stainless steel for the ultimate precision and durability.
- Container designed to rotate ingredients back to blades for faster, more efficient processing.
- The machine’s sleek touchscreen display is easy to use – and even easier to wipe clean.
- Includes the Simply Blending hardcover, full-color recipe book from Vitamix culinary team.
The Amazon reviews on this unit are fantastic, and one of the purchasers on the Vitamix website said:
“Bought this blender approx. 2 months ago now. Love everything about it! I especially love the self-cleaning feature which is a real time saver. Even when I don’t feel like making my daily smoothie, this blender makes the process effortless”.
Some blenders are easier to store than others, which could be a real concern if you have a small kitchen.
With their super-compact design, immersion blenders tuck easily into a drawer, though, again, they can’t take the place of a countertop blender. Personal blenders are also fairly compact.
If you’re going for a full-sized unit and plan to keep it out on the countertop, a model that is less than 17 inches tall should save space on the countertop by fitting under the kitchen cabinet when not in use (though it’s a good idea to take a measurement because some cabinets are lower).
Also, pay attention to the number of attachments and accessories that come with the blender; some models feature multiple mixing containers, which might improve their versatility, but they’ll also take up storage space in your cabinets.
Have some blender recommendations or tips? Let us know!
I’d love to meet you on Twitter! @FancyNewMe
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