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    Updated on Apr 10, 2020. Posted on Apr 10, 2020

    The Best Blenders That *Crushed* The Competition

    Ice cubes, meet your doom!

    We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    A good blender is a worthy investment, one that’ll come in handy for a variety of drinks and dishes, from smoothies to baby food to margaritas.

    The Carsey-Werner Company / Via giphy.com

    We tested the most highly rated blenders — judging them on horsepower, blade design, presets, accessories, user-friendliness, and cleanup — to find the ones that totally crushed it. Whatever your blending needs, we’ve got just the machine for you and your budget.

    Editor's Note: We're currently updating these picks! Check back soon for more.

    Ninja Professional Blender

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    The Ninja Professional is our low-budget pick because it feels and operates like a blender two to three times its price, coming in just under $100 (and often even less on sale). It has a sleek design and simple functionality that looks and feels, well…professional. There are only four settings plus a power button, making it a machine that’s easy to operate but still versatile. The stacked blades may look gimmicky, but they’re actually very effective. In fact, out of all the blenders we tested, it is the only one that was able to crush ice into an even texture, beating out even higher-end models. And anything that can make a margarita just as well as it can make a smoothie is a winner in our book.

    We blended everything from ice cubes to nut butters to hummus, and in all the taste tests and user surveys, the Ninja emerged victorious. It excels at smoothies: Whether you’re using frozen or fresh ingredients, everything gets mixed smoothly, evenly, quickly, and with ease. This is likely because the Ninja has the most powerful motor you’ll find in the market in this price range. It operates at 1000 watts, which translates to 1.34 horsepower. (Editor’s note: A blender’s horsepower can be determined by multiplying the wattage by 0.00134; this number reflects the actual operating horsepower of a blender, which can be different to the peak horsepower rating — the burst of power when you first start the machine up — often in a product’s description. For comparison: Considering that the high-end Vitamix E310 runs on 1440 watts or 1.92 horsepower, that’s pretty impressive!)

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    Don’t be intimidated by the extra blades — this blender is designed to make operations as easy and safe as possible. It is the only blender we tested with a locking lid and a locking jar (some have one, but not both features). The blender won’t start unless everything is locked into place. There are arrows and labels that guide the user step by step on how to assemble and disassemble the parts. It’s also one of the only ones we tested that has a pour spout, which might seem like a minor feature, but it actually makes things considerably less messy when trying to pour a smoothie into a to-go cup.

    When it comes to cleaning up, it couldn’t be simpler: You can completely remove the blades and just wash the jar on its own. Of all the models we reviewed, the Ninja is the only one with removable blades, and we found it considerably easier to hand wash and dry than other models because we weren’t in fear of slicing our hands on the blades (the blades themselves do require delicate handling, but we found that a soak in some soapy water followed by a quick rinse does the trick). The blades, jar, and lid are also dishwasher-safe. All these features make the Ninja Professional an excellent beginner model for someone who’s just getting into the blending scene.

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    At $89.99, the Ninja Professional falls on the higher end of the <$100 range. If the price tag is still beyond your budget, it’s worth noting that our runner-up, the Oster Heritage (the only blender with a glass jar), is $51 and also performed admirably in taste tests. And if you’re a single-blender-user household, this $25 Oster is a solid favorite of our Tasty editors for smaller jobs. But overall, the Ninja scored higher in horsepower and user-friendliness, making it our ultimate choice. Lest you need further convincing, we’re not the only ones who love it: This model is a solid customer favorite, with tons of five-star reviews across big-box retailers from Amazon to Walmart to Target.

    Get it from Amazon for $80.

    Hamilton Beach Professional 1800W

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    The Hamilton Beach Professional doesn’t just do one thing well — it can pretty much tackle anything you throw at it. Smoothies? No problem. It’ll even pulverize hardier greens like kale. Hummus? Of course. It made the best hummus in our taste test. And guess what? It also won in the carrot-puree category, so it’s a great choice for new parents who want to make baby food at home.

    We think the precise settings (smoothie, ice crush, puree) do indeed lend themselves to the best results for whatever you’re blending. Just dump in the ingredients, hit the right button, and the machine knows exactly how long to blend. You can even track the countdown on the LED screen. This smart blender is perfect for busy people getting ready in the morning. Once you hit the button, you can just leave it, go do something else, and the blender will stop automatically once it’s done. We think it’s the best mid-range blender because, in most respects, it’s as good as a $300+ model (lacking just a few special functions like the ability to make soup from scratch, like the Vitamix can) but retails for a little more than half the cost.

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    Small details and features make this blender feel high-end. The jar is made of Tritan plastic, a material much more durable and shatter-resistant than regular plastic or glass. It has an extremely powerful motor, which runs on 1800 watts/2.4 horsepower, so whatever you’re blending will be blended fast. And you don’t have to worry about it burning out, since the motor is thermal protected to prevent overheating. The tamper helps to move things along when ingredients get stuck (this happens to the best of blenders). It has a clean setting — just add warm water and a couple drops of detergent, hit the button, and the blender will rinse itself out (this method works on most blenders, but having a specific preset is convenient because the time is set). For a more thorough cleaning, you can throw the lid, jar, and tamper into the dishwasher. And when it’s not on the highest setting (or blending ice cubes), this machine is relatively quiet compared to others we tested.

    Another bonus is Hamilton Professional’s five-year limited warranty. While most blenders have a one- to two-year warranty — meaning if anything’s wrong with it after a couple of years, you’re SOL — with this one, if there are any defects in material or workmanship within five years (not including normal wear and tear), they’ll fix or replace it for you. You’ll have to pay for the shipping (unlike the Vitamix’s warranty, which covers two-way shipping), but it’s still a pretty good deal.

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    The runner-up in this price category is the Cuisinart Hurricane Blender, which isn’t quite as good as the Hamilton Beach at pureeing, but excels on all other fronts. At $126, it’s also a tad easier on the wallet. One thing to note: There are two different models of the Hamilton Beach Professional 1800W Blender. The one we tested, the more expensive option, has added presets and an LED display. The base model has the same horsepower, container, 1-10 speed dial (which gives you precise control over blending speed), and a five-year limited warranty, but it is significantly cheaper at $180. If you like this blender and don’t need the presets and LED display, it may be a good idea to go for the basic model and save yourself those dollars bills.

    Get it from Amazon for $250.

    Vitamix E310 Explorian

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    If you’re looking for a blender to whip up great smoothies and purees only, then we’ll stop you now: You probably don’t need a Vitamix. But if you want to use a variety of ingredients to make a bunch of different foods from scratch, then no other machine does it better.

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    When you drop a small fortune on an appliance, you expect it to wow you — and that’s exactly what the Vitamix E310 Explorian Blender does. It blends rice into flour in a matter of seconds, no joke. It turns raw almonds into a smooth and spreadable paste. It’s not just the result of a strong motor and hardened stainless steel blades put to work — the blender jar is specifically designed to create a vortex, which folds ingredients back to the blades for faster, smoother blends. This is what helped push the Vitamix way ahead of the Blendtec, another popular high-end blender we tested. When blending almonds, the Blendtec, with its rectangular jar and flat blades, flung the almond bits to the walls, where they remained stuck. (Note: We found the Blendtec to be better at pureeing; in fact, it made the best puree of all the machines we tested). A blade scraper is also included with the Vitamix, which came in handy for cleaning off sticky nut butter.

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    There’s no doubt that the Vitamix Explorian can make a great smoothie, but it can also make hot soups from scratch. Almost any blender can puree ingredients into a soup if you pre-cook the ingredients, but powerful machines like a Vitamix or Blendtec can turn cold or room-temperature ingredients into a steaming hot soup (within 10 minutes) using the friction of the blades (for example, the blades in a Blendtec spin over 300 miles per hour). But don’t worry about the motor overheating in this process — there’s built-in overload protection, and the motor is also designed to operate as efficiently and cooly as possible. The control panel is simple but allows for nuanced control over blending speed, which comes in handy for making things like mayonnaise. Because it’s so versatile and durable, it’s a great choice for those with special dietary needs (like dairy- or gluten-free diets) and those who need to make special recipes at home on a daily basis.

    We chose the Explorian because it’s the most accessible Vitamix model, meaning it has all the perks of a Vitamix machine at a more palatable price point (you’d be hard-pressed to find another model under $400, though the 5200 can sometimes dip to slightly under that on sale). The Explorian comes with a fairly compact 48-ounce container, so it’s great for a single person, a couple, or a small family to use. It’s also shorter, which means it can fit under most cabinets. However, if you do at some point want to switch to a larger (or smaller) container, you can always purchase an add-on container from Amazon, because all Vitamix containers and bases are compatible with each other.

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    One major perk of buying a Vitamix machine is its five-year, full machine warranty that covers all parts of the blender (base, container, lid, and tamper). Vitamix will not only repair or replace any malfunctioning parts that resulted from defects in material or workmanship, they also cover problems that result from normal wear and tear with ordinary household use! Additionally, the machine comes with a one-year accessory warranty that covers small things like the blade scraper and tamper holder — plus, you won’t have to pay for shipping.

    Reviewers have noted that this machine doubles as a food processor and can make things like salsa, pesto, sorbet, cashew cream, and dips. Some even use it to grind coffee beans and mix batter and dough. It’s truly a do-it-all powerhouse that performs the duties of several different appliances, and for that reason, it’s our top pick for a high-end blender.

    Get it from Amazon for $300.