A blender and a juicer. They both do the same thing, right?
We wouldn't fault you for thinking that. Blenders and juicers are actually pretty similar when it comes to functionality. They can both take ingredients and turn them into a tasty beverage.
But when you look a little closer, you'll see that these two appliances have their fair share of differences. And it's these differences that you should be aware of when both buying and using one of these appliances.
In this article, we'll be going over the comparing and contrasting blenders vs. juicers. We'll talk about the key aspects for each one and, in the end, we'll let you know which one is superior for your needs.
Key Aspects of Blenders
First, let's talk about blenders.
Blenders are kitchen appliances designed to mix, pureé, emulsify, and/or blend food and other substances into one whole mixture. They typically use a rotating metal blade at the bottom of the container that's powered by a motor.
This blade finely chops up your ingredients and the force of the centrifugal spin coming from the blades is evenly distributes said ingredients within the entire mixture.
Most blenders will allow you to choose the speed at which the blade rotates.
Mix, pureé, and emulsify are different speed settings that can each create unique textures in mixtures.
There is also another option called "pulse", which is usually presented as a push-n-hold button.
Pressing this button will allow you to blend at medium speeds until you let go of the button.
Here is a quick breakdown of what each speed is useful for:
- Mix (moderate speed) - Good for general blending. Focuses on mixing up ingredients while chopping them up. Useful for making smoothies.
- Pureé (fast speed) - Good for blending ingredients into a paste. Useful for making things like hummus or applesauce.
- Emulsify (very fast speed) - Good for blending ingredients into a thick, creamy liquid. Takes normally immiscible (doesn't naturally mix) ingredients and blends them together. Useful for making sauces, dressings, and oils.
- Pulse (moderate speed) - Good for chopping up ingredients. Useful for soups where you don't want to liquefy chunkier ingredients (cooked meat, veggies, etc.). Also useful for processing ingredients that don't require blending, such as pulverizing nuts, chopping chunkier veggies into smaller pieces, or even grinding up herbs.
Blenders are most well-known for making smoothies but, as you can see, they can be used to make a variety of other delicious concoctions.
The Pros of Blending
It's no secret that having a healthy diet is difficult.
Fast food, busy lives, and lack of health awareness all contribute to unwanted weight gain and lack of proper health.
But thankfully, blending is here to save the day.
Blenders are helpful in making sure that you get the appropriate amount of fruits and veggies in your diet.
Most people would agree that drinking something on the go is far easier than eating something; this is especially the case when you add in multiple pieces of food.
A fruit smoothie in the morning before your day starts is faster and easier than trying to eat a bunch of fruit.
Who doesn't like the idea of drinking something with tantalizing flavor and health benefits?
And it's way more convenient since you can prep smoothies in advance, meaning you don't have to spend time cooking up a nutritious breakfast each and every morning.
As long as you remove large seeds from bigger fruit, blenders will have no problem whipping up a fruity treat with all of the fruit's nutrients intact. And of course, you can add things like milk, ice, and more to achieve your desired texture, consistency, and taste.
Like we said before, you aren't limited to just smoothies with a blender. You can get creative and make a ton of different mixtures. If that's not your thing, then you could also just use a blender to save time chopping up ingredients that you can use in other recipes.
When it comes to versatility, it's hard to beat a blender. If you want to know more about blenders, click here to learn more.
The Cons of Blending
Blenders are pretty amazing, but they do have their share of shortcomings.
The most obvious one is that they do not and cannot act as a juicer. If you are hoping that you can use a blender to "juice" your fruits and veggies, then you are out of luck. Juicers use a different mechanical process compared to blenders.
And while they are easy to consume, the smoothies that blenders create actually be a detriment to your health if you aren't careful.
Fruits are naturally high in sugars and carbohydrates. Normally, your stomach gets fuller much faster when eating actual fruit, which controls the intake of these macronutrients.
But smoothies are a different story. It takes a lot more of a smoothie to achieve the same level of fullness, and it already takes more than one piece of fruit to make a smoothie as it is. It's surprisingly easy to down 2 or more smoothies (depending on the size), which can lead to an overconsumption of sugar and carbs.
Obviously, this is not good for a society that frequently consumes too much sugar and carbs, both of which are known to create health problems.
Smoothies also lose nutrient content fairly quickly, though this loss should level off with time. They are best consumed with 15 min to 20 min after creation, though refrigeration can extend that time to 1-2 days.
Key Aspects of Juicing
With blenders out of the way, let's now talk about juicers.
Juicers are kitchen appliances designed to do one thing:
They use gears, blades, and pressure systems to chop up and grind fruits and veggies to a pulp. This pulp is then further processed, and the juice is "squeezed" out.
Depending on the blender, the leftover pulp waste called pomace is then collected into a waste bin or pushed out into a waste bin. You can either use the pulp in other recipes, consume it separately, or throw it away.
There are three main types of juicers: masticating juicers, centrifugal juicers, and citrus juicers.
Masticating juicers, also known as cold-press juicers or slow juicers, use powerful pressure systems to extract as much juice as possible out of fruits and veggies. This process is a fair bit slower than the other types of juicers (expect a few minutes per run) but is optimized for high juice yield and maximum nutrient conservation.
Centrifugal juicers, also known as fast juicers, rely on using blades to chop up the fruit and using centrifugal (spinning) force to extract juice from fruits and veggies. This process is pretty fast (30 seconds to a 1 minute on average), but you trade speed for juice yield and end up destroying some nutrients.
Citrus juicers use reams to extract juice from citrus-based fruits. You can manually twist the fruit into a citrus juicer or go with an automatic one that twists for you. The juice yield is fairly low for this juicer, but the prep time required is minimal for citrus fruits, which otherwise require more prep in other juicers.
Juicers will only pump out juice. It is strongly not recommended to use a juicer for other functions unless you want to take the risk of breaking the whole appliance.
The Pros of Juicing
Juicing has taken the world of health by storm. And there are good reasons why this has happened.
Much like blenders, juicers provide people a convenient and healthy way to get fruits and veggies in your diet. Just stick your ingredients in the feeder chute and turn on the appliance; depending on your juicer, you'll get your juice within seconds to a few minutes.
You can't beat the convenience when it comes to juicers. As long as the fruit or veggie can fit in the juice, no further prep is required. Seeds and other unwanted waste are filtered out, so you don't have to worry about manually preparing your ingredients.
Compared to soda and other high-sugar beverages, juice is vastly superior health-wise. Juice can satisfy your thirst while also providing you a plethora of fruit/veggie content. And since the juice is easily digestible, those nutrients and minerals are quickly absorbed while also giving your digestive system a break.
In that regard, it's pretty effective at being a stopgap for unhealthy drinks.
Juice is also preferable to water for people who pale at the thought of drinking water all the time. It's tasty and easy to digest, which helps encourage you to continue drinking it and reaping the health benefits.
The leftover pulp doesn't have to be trashed either. You can find recipes online that utilize the pulp from different fruits and veggies. It's a good idea to consume it considering that the pulp is high in fiber, which is great for a number of bodily functions.
If you want to know more about juicers, just click here to learn more.
The Cons of Juicing
Juicing has had its fair share of criticisms, however.
Much like blenders, it's easy to overconsume on sugars and carbs found naturally in fruit. But unlike smoothies made by blenders, juice made from juicers will actually take even longer for the stomach to tell you to stop.
Since the fibrous pulp is filtered out, the ratio of sugar in juice per volume is much higher. Combined with the fact that it takes more fruit to produce juice equivalent to that of a smoothie, it's almost too easy to consume an unhealthy amount of those macronutrients.
It can also get rather costly if you frequently juice. You'll have to buy a good number of fruit and veggies to get an ample amount of juice since extraction percentages hover around 60% to 80%, depending on the fruit or veggie.
Due to how juicers are designed to work, they are also bigger and a bit bulkier than blenders.
As a result, they can be a bit more of a chore to clean and store, which could be a problem for people who are lacking in kitchen space.
Blender vs. Juicer - Which is Better?
Blenders and juicers fulfill similar roles, but is one better than the other?
Well, it depends on what you are looking for.
If you are all about health and getting the most nutrition out of your fruit and veggies, then a blender is the way to go.
It's the closest thing to eating produce directly and conserves a lot of the nutritional value.
If you are looking for a healthy alternative to high-sugar drinks and balk at the idea of mixing vegetables in a smoothie, then you are going to want a juicer.
It may not have as much nutritional value as a smoothie, but it's still very healthy in moderation. Juicers are also able to process smaller produce like wheatgrass much better than a blender can, giving the appliance a unique advantage.
If you are looking for an appliance that can fulfill several roles, then the blender is a no-brainer. It can whip up a variety of mixtures outside of just smoothies and give you access to a lot of delicious homemade recipes. Juicers are great at just one thing - juicing.
If you want a way to make a beverage without having to add anything else besides produce, then a juicer would be the perfect fit for you.
Blenders require some sort of additional liquid (milk, water, etc.) to create a smoothie out of fruit and veggies, but juicers don't have that requirement. With a juicer, you can just pop in the produce and let the magic happen.
For us, we prefer blenders since we value nutrition conservation the most. But juicers are pretty amazing in their own right and deserve consideration when deciding between the two.
Blenders are fantastic.
Juicers are wonderful.
No matter which one you get, you can rest easy knowing that you made a wise investment in your kitchen and in your health. And remember, there's no shame in getting both! They cover each other's weaker areas, making them a great tag-team in the kitchen.
If you are looking to pick up your own juicer, considering checking out our list of the top 10 best juicers of 2020.
If you are looking to pick up your own blender, you should definitely take a look at our list of the top 5 best smoothie blenders of 2020.
Finally, thank you for reading this article. If you enjoyed it, feel free to leave a comment and tell us about your experiences with blenders and/or juicers.
We'd love to hear from you guys. Seriously, we look forward to it!
Until next time, have a great day!