Smoothies are a great way to start your day. You’ll be able to flood your body with nutrients from the fresh ingredients and reduce your calorie intake while still feeling full. However, to enjoy the best possible smoothies, you’ll need the best smoothie blender.
This guide will discuss the many and varied smoothie makers on the market today. I’ll compare blenders for smoothie-making purpose, and help you find the best appliance for your needs!
What Should I Look for in a Smoothie Blender?
Before you start shopping, you need to factor a few elements into your decision-making. Most blenders can handle smoothies, but it still pays to know exactly what you are shopping for. Take a look at this list of must-haves and ensure that any blender that catches your eye fits the bill.
Look for a blender that offers multiple speeds. You may need to do a little experimentation with your smoothies to find the perfect consistency. That will mean playing with speed settings on your device. A pulsing feature will also be a huge plus, especially if you like a chilled smoothie.
Power of Performance
You’ll need to make sure your blender packs enough punch to process your ingredients. Typically, a blender that operates at 500 watts of power or above will do the trick. Anything less and you may struggle to make the most of your ingredients. Just be aware that a more powerful engine also equals more noise.
When purchasing a blender, you’ll obviously make sure it fits into your available kitchen space. Think about the size of the cup too, though. Part of the appeal of smoothies is their grab-and-go nature. Pick a blender that offers enough volume to feel like you’re full, but not so big that you’ll waste ingredients.
Price vs. Warranty
Last but not least, think about the price of your blender. The most expensive blender on the market is not always the best. However, if you buy cheap you may end up paying twice. Find a price point that works for you, and ensure it is complemented by a fair warranty if something goes wrong. Cost and value can sometimes be two different things.
That may seem like a lot to take in. That’s why I want to take the hard work out of the research for you! Below, you will find reviews of eight fantastic blenders that make stellar smoothies. You can’t go wrong with any of these appliances.
8 Top Blenders for Smoothies
I promised that I would compare blenders for smoothies, and now it’s time to do just that. Let’s take a look at the eight best smoothie makers on the market.
Editor’s Pick – Vitamix 5200 Blender
I’m going to cut to the chase – I consider the Vitamix 5200 to be the best blender on the market for smoothie making at home. Yes, there are slightly more elaborate alternatives. When I factor in cost and performance, however, this is the model that comes out on top.
Protected by a warranty of seven years, this blender offers everything you could hope for in a smoothie maker. You can create multiple smoothies at once thanks to the 64-oz. cup, and it will make swift work on any ingredient. The results will also be as smooth as silk, so you’ll be wonder how you went without smoothies for so long.
In the unlikely event that you grow bored of smoothies, the Vitamix 5200 offers a range of other features too. It’s that morning fruity treat that I’m focusing on for now though, and this appliance delivers on that score. I do not hesitate to recommend the Vitamix 5200 as my overall pick as a blender used for smoothie making.
- Delicious taste.
- High performance.
- Easy cleaning.
- Alternative functions.
Best Affordable Blender for Smoothies – NutriBullet NBR-1201
There’s nothing wrong with going cheap and cheerful sometimes, and the NutriBullet NBR-1201 offers both of these qualities in spades. You’ll be able to pick this model up for little more than the cost of a portable blender, but the difference in performance is pronounced.
The engine of this model is 600w. That’s lower than most of the blenders that I review, but you wouldn’t know it to use the NutriBullet. This model slices and chops your ingredients in record time, leaving you with a smoothie that’s ready to drink from the moment it is made.
The blades of this model are also designed to extract as much nutrition as possible from your ingredients. This is a big plus for smoothie-making. You’ll be enjoying a tasty liquid breakfast, and you’ll get to feel smug about the health benefits while doing so!
There’s only a one-year warranty attached to this appliance, but it’s reliable enough for that not to be a concern. You may decide to upgrade after that time anyway, once you have mastered smoothie-making. You can do so guilt-free, knowing that the minimal outlay on the NutriBullet yields substantial rewards.
- Cheap, fast smoothie-making.
- Smoothie novices.
- High nutrition.
Upgrade Pick – Vitamix A3500 Blender
Earlier in this guide, I sang the praises of the Vitamix 5200. While I stand by my judgment that the 5200 is the best choice for a home kitchen overall, improvement is always possible. Vitamix clearly knows that too, as they have now unleashed the A3500.
This is a professional-standard blender, and it comes with performance (and price tag) to match. I’ll be honest – it may be a little overwhelming for somebody new to smoothie making. Even I don’t fully understand what some of the features of the appliance are! However, when it comes to rating performance, it’s impossible to find fault with the A3500.
This is a smart blender, in every sense. It connects to a smartphone app, so you can program it from anywhere – ideal if you’re in a hurry. It also automatically detects quantities of ingredients, so you won’t be left with any overpowering flavors or disappointing milky or watery smoothies.
It’s a heavy piece of kit (it’s designed for use in a commercial kitchen, after all) but will still fit into most homes. It’s also protected by warranty for a whopping ten years. If you have space, the budget and the time and inclination to learn the many and varied features of this blender, I heartily recommend it for smoothies – and so much more.
- A hands-off approach to mixing smoothies.
- Elaborate and complicated recipes.
- Lovers of cutting-edge technology.
Single Serve/Personal Blender – Ninja BL455 Blender
Sometimes we’re all in a hurry. This is especially likely in the morning, which is the ideal time for a smoothie. If your kids are anything like mine, getting them out of bed on a school day is akin to warfare!
The Ninja BL455 is ideal for these circumstances because it works quickly and efficiently to create a single-serving smoothie. The motor revs at a thousand watts – which, I’ll be honest, is loud enough to wake the dead, though maybe an advantage in the morning – and makes quick work of any ingredients tossed into the container.
The Ninja comes with two cups, so you can enjoy your smoothie from the moment it’s finished blending. These are also variable sizes, so you can choose which suits you best. The blender is also packaged with a recipe book, so it’s ideal for smoothie newbies that may need a little inspiration.
There are certainly more elaborate blenders on the market, but if you’re looking for quick, affordable efficiency, the Ninja BL455 will get some fruit down your neck without trouble. The warranty is just a year, but the model is comparatively sturdy.
- Fast, efficient smoothies.
- Single servings.
- Tougher ingredients.
Blendtec Total Classic
It’s quite a claim to refer to an appliance as the, “Total Classic.” That’s a bold pair of words to use. This blender lives up to such billing and more besides, though. It makes delicious, lump-free smoothies from any ingredient with absolutely no fuss.
The first thing you’ll notice about this blender – other than the fact that it’s available in four colors to suit any kitchen – is the size. This is far from the prettiest or sleekest blender on the market, but it has power where it counts. The container attached, which is devoid of BPA, measures 32 oz. That’s enough to make four smoothies in one cycle. Perfect for a family on a health kick!
You can also clean up this blender with confidence and ease. The blunt blades ensure that curious little fingers will not be cut. You can minimize the risk even further by not even taking the blender apart. Just add soapy water to the container and start the blender for a self-cleaning cycle. All it needs afterward is a quick rinse.
BlendTec is so confident in the abilities of this blender that it’s covered by an eight-year warranty. That alone makes the outlay worthwhile. The quality of the produce of this blender makes it even easier to recommend.
- Busy families.
- Large smoothies.
- Quick cleaning.
Oster Pro Blender
Oster is not the most well-known of blender brands, but if they keep producing appliances to this standard that will soon change. This is a multipurpose blender with a ride range of settings – including a milkshake mode. That’s ideal for making smoothies.
The blades are extra wide, so it won’t take long at all to get your smoothie from whole to drinkable. It also boasts an engine power of 1,200 watts, so while that’s loud it’s also fast-acting. This blender is protected by a three-year warranty, and the price point is typically very appealing for so many features.
The only reason I have not rated this blender higher is unfamiliarity with Oster as a brand. I have no issues with the performance of this model, so I expect to be speaking a great deal more about this manufacturer in the future.
- Variety of blending performance.
- High performance at low cost.
- Fast-acting, wide blades.
Portable Smoothie Blender – PopBabies Personal Blender
This blender from PopBabies is a portable model, which comes with a range of pros and cons. It’s a great space-saver and ideal for anybody keen to make smoothies on the move (such as at your desk at work.) It’s not suitable for every need, though.
Let’s start with the drawbacks of a personal blender. Obviously, this model is small. It stands at just 10 inches, and weighs as little as 3 lbs. This means that it’s easily moved, but it also restricts just how many ingredients you can use. Complex smoothies will be tricky with a portable blender.
On the other hand, however, this portable nature is a big plus. You can take this blender anywhere, and it’s USB-chargeable so you won’t need a wall socket. You can also use it internationally for this reason. It also comes with a 140z glass attached, so that will be plenty big enough for most.
Personally, I recommend a portable blender as an additional appliance rather than a solitary one. If that’s a road you’re going down, however, this PopBabies model is the best blender of its ilk on the market.
- Smoothies on the move.
- Using internationally.
- Quick, small smoothies.
Commercial Smoothie Blender – Blendtec 885 Stealth
I have mentioned a few times that a more powerful motor in a blender typically tends to create plenty of noise. There is an exception to every rule, however, as the 885 Stealth blender proves. This model is named Stealth for a reason. Despite operating a motor of 3.8hp, this appliance is no louder than a conversation.
It’s also a professional-standard blender (the best one, I would say!) This means it performs to an astonishingly high standard. You’ll have a perfectly blended drink in as little as 14 seconds. There are also 42 pre-programmed blending cycles, so plenty of opportunities to practice and perfect your technique. Naturally, you can also add your own.
Of course, there is always a stumbling block. A professional model comes with a professional price tag, and you’re unlikely to find this appliance retailing for less than four figures. The blender is covered by a three-year warranty though, and BlendTec are based in the US so you’ll receive new parts quickly.
- Quiet, rapid smoothie making.
- Professional standard smoothies in the home.
- Experimenting with different cycles.
Smoothie Blender Brands
There is no shortage of blender manufacturers out there vying for your custom. Let’s take a look at five of the most reputable.
Vitamix has an advantage over some blender manufacturers, in that the company is based in Ohio. This means it will much easier and faster to source spare parts if you need them! Thankfully, you shouldn’t need their help much. Vitamix products are high-quality and built to last.
The appliances of this British company may not be as stealthy and silent as their warrior namesakes, but Ninja still produces high-quality, no-nonsense blenders at an appealing price point. If you’re new to blending and smoothies, Ninja products are always worth a look.
As the name suggests, BlendTec dedicate their business model to all things pertaining to blenders. It shows in their offering, too. BlendTec appliances are sold, sturdy and work to an extremely high standard, especially the Classic model that I reviewed above.
NutriBullet appliances offer a great introduction to the world of blending for nutrition. The range has been substantially expanded since the first model became a home shopping channel sensation, and while NutriBullet appeals to a more straightforward market, there is plenty to love about their business model.
KitchenAid is better known for their freestanding large appliances, but they have made admirable inroads into the blender market too. I’m a big fan of this brand, and expect them to become a genuine market leader in the years to come.
FAQs About Smoothie Blenders
What is the Best Smoothie Maker on the Market?
As per my reviews, I really can’t look past the Vitamix 5200 when recommending a blender for smoothies. This is a fantastic blender in its own right, bringing professional quality to a personal kitchen. The fact that it’s also great for smoothies is an added bonus!
How Many Watts Should a Good Blender Have?
For making smoothies, you’ll need a minimum of 500 watts. More is always fine – it means the blender will work faster and more efficiently. It also ensures more variety of function. Powerful motors can sometimes be noisy though, so bear that in mind.
What’s a Good Cheap Blender to Make Smoothies?
Any blender can make smoothies, as long as it runs at a power wattage above 500w. If you’re looking for a nice, basic blender with limited frills, consider the NutriBullet NBR-1201 or Ninja BL455. These appliances have fewer bells and whistles than other blenders, but do a fine job with smoothies.
What Blender Makes the Smoothest Smoothies?
As a professional-standard blender, it’s hard to look past the BlendTec Stealth 885 for this. Using this blender ensures that you’ll enjoy a smoothie comparable to something from a professional bar. If you cannot afford such an elaborate model, however, refer back to the good old Vitamix 5200.
Do You Need a Special Blender to Make Smoothies?
Any blender is capable of making smoothies, but not all blenders are created equal. Refer back to my guide on what to look for in a smoothie-making blender. Ideally, pick a model with a choice of gears so you can control the speed of your blending and a pulsing feature. Thankfully, these are pretty standard.
What is the Difference Between a Smoothie Maker and a Blender?
The clue is in the name, really. A smoothie maker has one job, and it does it very well. A blender, meanwhile, boasts the creation of smoothies as just one of its functions. Specialist smoothie makers work faster and slightly more efficiently, but the flexibility of a blender makes it a kitchen essential.
What is the Best Small Smoothie Blender?
How small is small? If you’re really struggling for space, you could pick up the Pop Babies portable blender that I reviewed above. Just make sure you’re aware of the limitations of such a device. For small countertop models, the Nutribullet and Ninja models are perfectly compact.
Can I Use a Normal Blender to Make Smoothies?
Yes, a blender is a perfectly competent smoothie maker. To replicate the experience you’d get from a dedicated smoothie maker, stir your ingredients with a wooden spoon. This will provide a taste and texture identical to a smoothie maker, and negate the need for two separate but almost identical appliances.
What is the Best Affordable Blender for Smoothies?
“Affordable” is a subjective term. What looks like a bargain to one reader may seem hopelessly overpriced to another! Given the market rate of blenders, however, I would recommend the NutriBullet NBR-1201 as an affordable option that delivers to a high standard. Shop around and you may even get change from a $50 bill.
This concludes my journey into the world of smoothie-making blenders. I hope that you’ve found these insights valuable – and that I have made it clear how great smoothies can be! Find a model that works for you and enjoy the results. You’ll look and feel great in no time.