What can you do with a blender?
Functionally, it’s pretty straightforward: you can blend things. But the possibilities stem from everything you can achieve with a quick blend. While a juicer removes certain things in bringing different juices together to form nutritious combinations, a blender leaves nothing behind — anything you provide gets mercilessly whipped into a thick beverage.
Consider that plenty of things can’t usefully be juiced, but they can be blended. Want to blend a cake? Go for it. Eating peanuts but feel that they’re insufficiently buttery? Churn them into some creamy peanut butter. If your teeth can handle something, there’s a decent chance that a blender can cut it down to size.
What are the benefits of blending foods?
Blending is both fun and practical, as we’ve established, but what are the specific benefits? Aside from texture, why would someone want to invest in a great blender? Good questions! Let’s go through some of the main benefits of blending:
- You can try all-new recipes. Ever wanted to try a some creamy avocado on toast but ended up settling for pizza instead? A blender opens up your culinary options.
- You can replace store-bought items. Keep buying dips and sauces? Make your own at home: you’ll save money, and cut way back on additives.
- You can prepare dough or batter. You could do it manually, of course, but if you don’t want to get RSI from whisk abuse, you should let a blender carry the weight.
- You can sneak in some extra nutrition. Don’t like cabbage, but want the nutrients? Blend it along with something you do like, and you might not even notice it.
Blenders are so useful, in fact, that a kitchen without a blender barely deserves to be called a kitchen at all. If you have any cooking aspirations, you owe it to yourself to get one.
How can you choose the right blender?
When looking for a blender, you need need to think carefully about your specific needs. Every blender we stock is a premium product, and they differ by design and purpose instead of quality — it’s all about finding the blender that fits your requirements.
Here are some of the things you should consider:
- Style. Most blenders are decked out in black or silver, but there are exceptions — and then there’s the matter of design. Are you looking for a minimalist model, or something more extravagant? What will fit best in your kitchen?
- Dimensions. The bigger the blender, the more it can blend, but the more space it will take up. If you have a small kitchen, measure the available space and confirm that the model you choose will actually fit.
- Weight. This doesn’t matter so much if you intend to set up the blender and leave it there (for the most part), but if you’re someone who travels a lot, you may want something lighter and thus easier to take with you.
- Power. The more powerful the blender, the faster it will work, and the tougher ingredients you’ll be able to blend — but that power will go to waste if you don’t have any specific need for it, so there’s no sense in getting power for the sake of it.
- Accessories. Blenders can have spare jugs, cleaning tools, replacement parts, attachments, and other accessories. If there’s something in particular you’re looking for, it will likely be cheaper and easier to find a blender that comes with it.
- Warranty. We believe in the quality of all the blenders we sell, but anything with moving parts can (and will eventually) degrade. If you want to make a frugal purchase that will last you for years, pick a blender with a lengthy warranty period (e.g. 10 years).
In addition to all of these things, you should also think about the various kinds of blender you can get: each with a slightly different purpose and target market. Let’s run through them all:
What are the different types of blender?
We split our range into four categories of blender, with each category featuring a wide range of prices and features. We generally recommend checking through the types, picking the one best suited to your case, and then looking at the individual blenders to narrow them down to one. Here are the types you need to know about:
When you’re using a blender for your business (or simply a passionate amateur chef), you need it to be exceptionally powerful and robust. Commercial blenders are designed to keep working where others might fail, and that high standard is why they’re considerably more expensive than other blenders — starting at around £250, and hitting around ten times that at the top end.
It’s a hefty investment, but if you’re going to be using it every day (or at least very frequently) then it won’t be long before a commercial blender fully justifies the expenditure. With a powerful motor and sturdy blades strong enough to process almost anything, you can breeze through even the most challenging blend over and over again — and for years to come.
Smoothies, dips, sauces, milkshakes, nut butters, doughs, cocktails, salsas, hummus, soups, pudding, batters… a commercial blender won’t break a sweat. If that’s the kind of blender you want — and you can justify the cost — then consider Blendtec
blenders in particular. These brands are widely praised, and for good reason.
Typically costing anywhere from £20 to £70, hand blenders are designed for low-intensity blending in bowls. Because you sink the exposed blades into whatever you’re blending, they’re also known as “immersion blenders” — if you’ve ever made a cake, you might well have used a hand blender to whip everything together.
A hand blender has one big advantage, but a similarly big weakness. In its favour, it’s more situationally versatile: if you can’t get whatever you’re trying to blend into a jug, or you’d rather not have to bother, you can leave it where it is (even a narrow bowl) and use a hand blender.
Working against this type of blender is its relative lack of performance and stability — use a hand blender on anything that isn’t quite soft and it’s likely to stop or even break down. If you’re just looking for some assistance when baking bread or making soup, though, a hand blender should get the job done.
Take a blender, add a removable jug, and you have a jug blender. This is the most common type of blender — strong and sturdy enough to use for general purposes in the kitchen, but (for the most part) not up to the task of being used for hours and hours every day. As far as pricing goes, jug blenders start at a little more than the cheapest hand blenders and scale up to encompass commercial blenders (with the quality, particularly of the motor, steadily increasing).
If you like the idea of having a blender but you’re not absolutely sure how much you’re going to use, you’d do well with a low-end jug blender. If you find yourself blending all the time, you can always invest in a higher-end model down the line.
Do you lead an active lifestyle and like the sound of being able to quickly make simple fruit and vegetable smoothies with minimal mess? That’s exactly what personal blenders are for. Comparatively new on the market, they’re aimed at people who have low-intensity and low-quantity blending needs (typically fitness enthusiasts).
Something you’ll notice about personal blenders is that they have more vibrant and compact designs than other blenders, and have smaller capacities — some (like the Breville Blend Active
we sell) actually use detachable bottles instead of jugs, making it possible to blend a smoothie in minutes and take it with you (perfect for anyone looking to stay healthy on a busy schedule).
They’re among the weakest blenders around, naturally, so you won’t be able to use them for any heavy-duty blending, but that’s not what they’re designed for. If you want to enjoy more fresh smoothies without taking up a lot of space or spending a large amount (you can easily find personal blenders in the £25-£40 area) then this may be the type of blender for you.
Our picks: blender features to look for
Having gone through what you need to think about when it comes to buying a blender, and reviewed the different kinds you can get, you probably now have some idea of what might work best in your circumstances.
Before you make a final decision, though, we have some suggestions of features that are worth looking no matter which type of blender you want to buy:
- Blending frequently requires a lot of cleaning, so a strong container that’s easy to clean will make your life a lot easier.
- Some blenders can have confusing control schemes. Look out for controls that seem intuitive and robust (buttons that won’t easily fall off or get stuck, for instance).
- To deal with different ingredients and produce varying levels of thickness, having at least 3 speeds and a pulse setting — along with programmed settings for specific actions (stirring, pureeing, etc.) — will be important.
- Regardless of the strength of the motor, look for strong and well-designed stainless steel blades (given that blender blades are often left without being cleaned for hours or even days, corrosion resistance is essential).
- While a great blender should last for a very long time (and have a lengthy warranty), buying a model that has replacement parts available will give you confidence that it can be repaired even after the warranty expires.
Ready to decide? Check out our full range of blenders, read reviews, weigh up all the features, and make the best decision you can — you can’t go wrong with any of our blenders.
(Still not sure about what type of blender will be best for you? Get in touch! We’ll give you some pointers and help you pick out a model that will meet all your needs.)