Oh if my blender could talk! This trusty kitchen appliance has been with me for most of my adult life and it has been a true workhorse in so many ways. Starting out, my blender was the life of the party — mixing margaritas and daiquiris with ease. Then when my first daughter came along, I began using it to puree fruits and vegetables for her. As my kids grew and my cooking skills developed, I’ve used my blender to make homemade soups (butternut squash is a favorite), pesto, and so much more. In recent years, a focus on healthier eating has turned me into a smoothie pro and now I’m perfecting my nut-butter skills.
I tell you all of this to boost my contention that a blender is one of the most versatile small appliances you can have in your kitchen. As far as I’m concerned, it’s a must have. But there are so many to choose from! Never fear. Whether you are buying one for yourself or as a gift for a friend or family member, we’ve done the research and selected six of the best blenders to have in your cabinet.
1. Ninja Intelli-Sense Kitchen System
To call this a blender really doesn’t do it justice. As the name indicates, it is a multi-purpose system of appliances that work off one (very) smart base. For traditional blender-type features, use the 72-ounce “Total Crushing” pitcher or the 24-ounce single-serve blender cup. For food processor-type applications, use the 64-ounce “Precision Processor” bowl; and for really cool, impress-your-friends ribbons of vegetables and fruits, use the auto-spiralizer. The smart base automatically recognizes which bowl you are using and prompts you with the appropriate menu on the touchscreen. So far I’ve used it make smoothies, mix dough, and make curly fries and everything has come out perfect. It’s one appliance that does the job of four. Genius!
2. Cuisinart Hurricane Compact Juicing Blender
If you are mostly making single-servings of smoothies and other blended drinks, this Cuisinart blender is perfect for you. It comes with two 16-ounce cups — blend your ingredients right in the cup then pop on one of the travel lids, add a straw and you are on your way. The eight-ounce chopping cup is also very useful for mincing herbs, grinding nuts and seeds, making breadcrumbs, and more. And, of course, it also comes with a traditional 32-ounce blender jar for chopping ice and making larger quantities of smoothies, shakes, and more.
3. Omega OM6560
This is one of the newest blenders from Omega. I like the simple controls that include a dial with LED lights to indicate the 11 speeds and toggle switches to choose from high/low and pulse functions. The base is really sturdy, even when using it to crush ice, and it’s not too loud. It comes with a 64-ounce container and a plunger/spatula to push ingredients in.
4. Vitamix Ascent Series A3300
This is a great blender from Vitamix’s new Ascent series. Let’s start with the fact that both the container and lid are dishwasher-safe. The built-in digital timer also is very useful — it counts up when you are running it on variable speed and counts down if you are using one of the pre-programmed settings, or you can program it for automatic shut-off. The unit comes with a 64-ounce container and a variety of other compatible containers can be purchased separately. Vitamix offers a 10-year warranty on all Ascent Series blenders.
5. Oster Beehive Blender
This is the blender that’s been in my kitchen for 15+ years and it still works just as well as day one. It’s got a really solid but simple design with two speeds: high and low. The stainless steel blade crushes ice and frozen fruit with ease. And the 48-ounce glass jar is dishwasher safe. It’s a top pick for a budget-friendly blender.
6. Waring Commercial MX1200XTX
Waring primarily sells to the commercial market like restaurants and smoothie shops, which means their blenders are equipped for heavy duty. In fact, the specs on this one say it is suitable for making more than 75 smoothies a day! But even if you are just making one, you’ll appreciate the powerful motor and simple controls with a variable speed knob and high/low and pulse switches. The 64-ounce container is dishwasher safe and unbreakable.
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