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As a professional raw food chef and teacher for 20 years, I have used many types of blenders over the years. I have had some blenders that I have really liked using and some that I would not recommend purchasing. In a nutshell, you get what you pay for.
Here is what I have found through extensive hands-on research:
1. Single or a traveler
Are you making food for just yourself and are mostly interested in smoothies and salad dressings?
Price $40. Super easy to make single servings to take on the go. Not the most powerful and just good for quick smoothies and simple dressings. You can use the blending canister as a travel mug.
Easy to travel with. I own a Magic bullet, but honestly, I don’t use it too much. It’s good for grinding flax seeds or coffee beans but even that can be done in a larger blender. I would use it if I was traveling and didn’t have space for a large blender, but usually, since I am preparing food for others or teaching I pack my Vitamix in my luggage.
Prices $80-$160. More powerful than the magic bullet and has a larger canister capacity (up to 48 oz) which is great not only for soups and smoothies but for grinding nuts and seeds into a flour, making nut and seed cheeses and blending thicker items. It’s also easy to throw in your luggage or car. I do not own one, but know many people who do, and love it.
2. Family or multiple people
After more than 20 years or more of blender experimentation, the Vitamix is my favorite blender ever. It has a large blending capacity (up to 8 cups) and the variable speed lets me control how fast or slow my food gets blended. When making thick things like cheeses and pates,
I like that I can put it on low and easily add more water through the top until it gets to the desired consistency. I also don’t have to worry about it changing speeds suddenly or the lid popping off. I use it most days for just blending smoothies, juices and hot drinks at home, but when it comes to doing raw food recipes, it is irreplaceable.
Price range: $300-$700. The 5500 (variable speed with the tall 8 cup canister) is still my favorite one and is around $500. I also love the power of the Vitamix. One more note is that although the shorter canister has just as much capacity as the taller canister (6500 vs. 5500) it doesn’t vortex as well.
So when in doubt, buy the taller canister and you won’t be disappointed. You may also wish to spend the extra $100 to buy the 32 or 48 oz. sized canister for when you are making small batches of things such as sauces or syrups.
What I love about the Vitamix: Easy to use, easy to blend and I can use the tamper to push down the produce onto the blade when making smoothies or juices.
I just used this for 2 1/2 weeks when catering a retreat in Ecuador, and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by the new model. They have finally made variable speed for this and it was super easy to use. What do I like about this blender? It’s easy to clean the wide canister and easy to clean the base of the blender.
What don’t I like? I can never walk away, and I always have to hold my hand on the lid or it may pop off creating a huge mess of green all over the walls (yes, it even happened to us 2-3 times in Ecuador). So this would be my second choice for blenders as it’s just as powerful as the Vitamix but doesn’t have the tamper, and I don’t like the lid.
Vitamix. Get multiple canisters for different uses. I recommend at least 3 canisters: 32 oz., 64 oz. wide size and 64 oz. narrow size.
Vitamix (see Chef). Don’t waste your money on the dry canister as it’s only for grinding grains to make bread, etc.
Don’t be fooled by Vitamix knockoffs such as the Kriss or the Omni blender. I’ve used them in other countries such as Indonesia, and they are a poor substitute for the power of the Vitamix or Blendtec.
TAKE CARE OF YOUR STUFF
Most of all, enjoy whatever equipment you have! Wipe it and clean it daily with a white vinegar and water combination (1 to 10) and take good care of it.
Don’t use the scratchy scrubber to clean it or you will scratch it up and it’ won’t be clear anymore. You can buy non-scratch sponges. My favorite tool to clean my blender by far is this:
Article by Elaina Love, Faculty Member here at the BodyMind Institute
Elaina Love's Raw Chef Certification
Elaina's Website: https://elainalove.com/