If you are looking to purchase a blender, there are a few things you should consider before going out and purchasing the first one you see. There are so many different blenders on the market today that I cannot even begin to try to estimate a number which would represent them all. It is important to know what options are available to you in the world of blenders, and to create a list of those options which matches your needs and desires.
In this article, we will look at different blender options. Some options will be useful or useless depending upon your reason for buying a blender. For example, hybrid options which allow you to mix dough as well as juices may be great for someone who loves to bake, yet completely useless for someone who does not. We will also take a gander at some options which I believe everyone should look for in any blender they purchase. Of course, these are only my opinions. Still, I will explain the reasoning which led me toward those opinions and urge you to go out and perform even more research so that you can make an educated decision if you are still unsure when you are finished reading.
What Is The Best Type Of Blender For You
Before you can even begin to entertain ideas about material types and motor wattage, it is important to identify they type of blender which is best suited to your intended uses. You must first decide whether you would prefer a countertop blender, immersion blender, personal blender, or hybrid/all-in-one blender. If you aren’t sure which of these is best for you, take a look at our article outlining the difference between the different types of blenders.
To begin by selecting your preferred type of blender helps you narrow down your choices. Instead of looking at every single blender in the world as a possibility, you are able to work your way down to about one quarter of the blenders in the world. Slowly, you are getting closer to selecting your best blender. Now, assuming you have already figured out which type of blender you prefer, let’s figure out which features are most important to you.
Permanent Versus Removable Blades
There are upsides and downsides to both of these options. Permanent blades usually have less of a chance of leaking. In fact, although people sometimes complain about leaking from blenders with removable blades, that is rarely a complaint about those with permanent blades. That being said, blenders with removable blades are much easier to clean. I know I have struggled and cut myself more than once trying to clean a blender with permanent blades.
Removable blades are my personal preference simply because easy cleaning is more important to me than possible leaking, as I would expect to find out if blender leaks before its warranty runs out. Regardless of my preferences, you will need to come to your own conclusions.
By ‘pitcher measurements’ I do not mean the height and circumference of the pitcher, although I do think that may be important for you to consider as well. What I mean are measurements painted or molded on to the side of the pitcher which show you the volume of liquid inside it. Not all blender pitchers share this feature; some are simply blank.
Of course, it is nice to have extra features such as measurement markings included with your blender whenever possible. However, what if you find what is an otherwise perfect blender which is lacking measurement markings? Will you choose a less functional blender in order to ensure that measurement markings are included? It is up to you to decide not only if you would like measurement markings on the pitcher of your blender, but also how important it is for you to have them.
Countertop, personal, and hybrid/all-in-one blenders should feature blades which sit at the bottom of the pitcher. I strongly advise against purchasing one which has blades at the top or which run up the middle. Actually, I do not believe you can purchase one which features blades at the top (they would either have to mix air or you would have to overfill your blender for them to even touch food). There are, however, ones which feature blades running up the middle. In fact, I once owned one which had middle blades.
Blenders with blades in the middle of the pitcher (instead of the bottom) are not useless and can perform the job of grinding or pureeing food and mixing drinks. They simply do not work as well as those which feature blades at the very bottom, because the middle blades interfere with the blending process.
Blenders work by creating an environment where air is pulled down from the top, creating a tornado-like vortex through the center of the pitcher. The vortex pulls food and liquid from the top to the bottom in the areas closest to where the air makes its way downward. The food and liquid then hit the blades at the bottom of the blender, where the food is sliced and diced and mixed in with the liquid. As the blades push the blended mixture outward, they also force it back up to the top where the process begins again.
Although somewhat of a vortex can be created in a machine with center blades, the very existence of the blades makes it more difficult for the vortex to be created. This results in a weaker vortex, which usually ends up taking much longer for you to perform tasks in a blender with center blades than it would in a blender with bottom blades.
If you are in search of a countertop blender, a personal blender, or a hybrid/all-in-one blender, I must suggest that you find one which features a tapered pitcher which is larger at the top and smaller at the bottom. A tapered pitcher creates a shape which promotes the blending process by creating the perfect environment for creating a strong vortex like the one described above.
Motor wattage for blenders can range from 300 to 1500 watts, although it is also good to know that some manufacturers do not list wattage and instead speak in terms of horsepower. For your personal information, in case you find yourself trying to convert between the two, one horsepower is equitable to approximately 746 watts.
One would assume that a high-wattage motor would be preferable to a low-wattage motor. There are sources who beg to differ and have found that consumer reviews and ratings do not change drastically in relation to motor wattage. On the other side of things, I could easily argue that one expects less from a low wattage motor and therefore adjusts his or her rating and review to reflect how well it lived up to expectations, as opposed to grading it on a curve based on the precedent set by higher wattage motors.
You may want to do a little of your own research, but I will tell you what I have found in mine. It does appear that motor wattage makes a difference. However, you will not necessarily want to go out and buy yourself a high-wattage blender. It all depends on what you expect from your blender. Will you be using often? Will you be running it continuously for long periods of time? Will you be assigning it rather difficult tasks and running it at high speeds regularly? If you answered “yes” to some of these questions, consider a high-wattage motor. On the other hand, if you plan to use your blender once or twice a week to create a quick smoothie, don’t waste your money on a high-wattage motor.
Some blenders feature up to 16 different speed and pulse settings. For an expert chef, this may not be very intimidating. For everyday people like you and me, this can be a little bit overwhelming. Unless you are an expert chef, chances are that you will not be requiring this many speed and pulse settings. A range of three to five different settings is usually ideal for someone who intends to make regular dishes, such as vegetable and fruit purees, dips, smoothies, and milkshakes.
I maintain that multiple speeds are infinitely better than one speed. The ability to increase or decrease the speed of the blades allows you to alter the degree to which your blender breaks down the food you place inside. It is much easier to create a chunky salsa if you can alter the blender speed. I once tried to make salsa in a one-speed blender and ended up with pasta sauce instead.
From what materials would you like your blender to be made? Do you prefer a lightweight housing with a small price tag (plastic) or something more durable with a larger price tag (stainless steel)?
If you are purchasing a personal blender, perhaps you prefer a lightweight pitcher which is easy on your wrist or easy to carry around. If that is the case, you will want a blender with a plastic pitcher. However, if you are concerned about the chemicals in plastics or the fact that plastics can be rather brittle, you may prefer a blender with a glass pitcher.
Easy To Clean
Despite all of their wonderful qualities, even some of the best-functioning blenders are incredibly difficult to clean. Remember that liquefied foods often become very sticky. If your blender contains many little crevices it can be nearly impossible to clean away every last bit of stuck-on food.
Try to find a blender without these crevices, if possible. You may need to look very closely at pictures or remove the blender from its packaging to figure this out. Another suggestion is to read consumer reviews for the product to see if actual consumers have had a difficult time cleaning it.
The final consideration is price. How much money are you able to spend? How much money are you willing to spend? I suggest knowing what your budget is before you go out in search of your new blender. It can be very easy to become overwhelmed and overexcited. Before you know it, you may find yourself spending more money than you had intended.
Figure out your budget before you begin looking at specific products. You can even figure out multiple price ranges, based on the features you would like in your blender. For example, you may decide that you are willing to spend up to $50 on a personal blender, so long as it features a lid with removable blades. If you can only find ones with non-removable blades, you may decide that you are not willing to spend more than $30.