We at PerfectSmoothie.com have personally owned 5 different blenders for smoothies and have been making smoothies regularly for over 10 years. Some products may specifically market themselves as "smoothie blenders", "smoothie makers", or "smoothie machines", but they are all just basically blenders and have the same principal working parts.
If you are shopping around or researching smoothie blender reviews online there is no need to look further. We have researched, tested, and reviewed both the most popular smoothie blenders as well as our overall pick for "the best blender for smoothies" and here are our findings: (updated for Winter 2013)
High End Blenders
Vitamix 5000 / Vitamix 5200Our Top Pick for "Best Smoothie Blender": The Vitamix 5200 (formerly known as the Vitamix 5000) is our personal smoothie blender of choice and is the best blender for smoothies on the market. Because this blender handles frozen and whole uncut fruits with the use of Vitamix's patented tamper device, you don't have to mess around and waste any time. In fact, we guarantee that if you are making smoothies every day this blender will pay for itself in less than a year. This is a serious smoothie machine that should be looked at as a positive investment toward your health.
Where to Buy: The cheapest way to buy the Vitamix 5200 is directly from their web site with this Vitamix promotion code for free shipping.
Blendtec Total BlenderThe Blendtec Total Blender is also a very popular smoothie maker. One great feature of this blender is that it has a self timer which means you can start it up and it will turn off automatically when the blending cycle is finished. It will also auto-adjust if it needs more power to finish. It has a 1500 Watt motor, a futuristic electronic display, no knobs or dials, and includes a 64-ounce jar along with a book of over 100 recipes.
Where to Buy: The cheapest way to buy the Blendtec Total Blender is from Blendtec's web site with this Blendtec promo code for free shipping.
Lower Priced Blenders
If you are new to smoothie making it may be more cost effective to first try something less expensive to decide whether making smoothies regularly is right for you. There are however 4 important caveats to be aware of when purchasing a lower priced blender, and the manufacturers themselves will never tell you this:
- Cheaper priced blenders are not designed to be used every day. Their warranties are limited to 1 year or less, and if used daily they usually last less than a year.
- Because these blenders have lower-powered motors the blend cycles will always take significantly longer. You are also not guaranteed to always get a perfectly smooth consistency.
- The reason we strongly prefer the Vitamix 5200 is that its patented tamper device allows you to virtually skip pre-cutting any ingredients. These lower-priced blenders require additional preparation time in that you have to cut up the fruit and vegetables into reasonably small sized pieces for them to blend properly.
- Finally, with a lower priced blender you will be limited to mostly fresh non-frozen ingredients. The lower priced motors aren't strong enough to blend a jar full of frozen contents. The downside is that fresh ingredients cost significantly more than frozen.
Breville Hemisphere Control BlenderThe Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender stands out among our best blenders for smoothies in the lower price category. Because Vitamix has a patent on their tamper device this has forced other manufacturers to find creative ways to improve the blending process using alternative engineering methods. The result is Breville's patented hemisphere blade system. This unique design forces larger ingredients towards the bottom of the cup shaped container. This blender has an elegant stainless steel body, an easy to use lcd timer for pre-programmed smoothie blending cycles, a 750 Watt motor, and a 6-cup co-polyester container that is dishwasher safe.
Where to Buy: The Breville Hemisphere Blender is available with free shipping from Amazon.
Oster BeehiveThe Oster Beehive is a classic looking stainless steel 500 Watt smoothie blender that can blend most non frozen items and looks fantastic on your counter with its retro beehive design. It's like a piece of art on your kitchen counter. It has a simple knob control with 2 speeds. The jar is made out of glass and is relatively easy to keep clean. We used this smoothie machine exclusively for about a year before upgrading to the Vitamix 5200 in order to blend frozen items and whole fruits to save time and money.
Where to Buy: The Oster Beehive is also available with free shipping from Amazon.
The Nutri Bullet Blender/Mixer SystemThe Magic Bullet brand of smoothie blenders have bypassed the traditional upright jar and motor design and turned the concept of a blender on its head. The best feature about this blender is how there is relatively no cleanup as the small self contained jar is easily washed and produces just one or two servings. The most popular reason people purchase this blender is that it is very fast and easy to both use and clean. It comes with a lot of extra accessories which may be excessive if all you intend to do is make smoothies.
Where to Buy: The cheapest and easiest way to buy one is through Amazon: Nutri Bullet 12-Piece Blender/Mixer System