Equipment Review: Best Blenders & Our Testing Winner

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Full review and results chart: \r
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We wanted crushed ice and smooth puree. Was that too much to ask? To find out, we corralled 9 blenders—everything from an affordable $40 appliance to our luxe benchmark, the Vitamix, as well as a new copy of the KitchenAid. \r
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We tested 9 blenders to find the best one:\r
Vitamix 5200\r
Breville The Hemisphere Control\r
Ninja Professional Blender\r
Hamilton Beach Rio Commercial Bar Blender\r
Cuisinart Blend and Cook Soup Maker\r
Hamilton Beach Wave Maker 2-Speed Blender\r
Oster 7-Speed Reversing Motor Blender\r
Waring Pro Professional Food and Beverage Blender\r
KitchenAid 5-Speed Blender\r
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Hummus, crushed ice, margarita, and milkshake tests were givens, but to separate the workhorses from the wimps, every day for a month we also made smoothies in each one with fibrous frozen pineapple and stringy raw kale. Glimpse behind the scenes of our testing process, and learn which blender came out on top.\r
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Note: We pitted the Blendtec Total Blender against the Vitamix in a testing from new, and we found the Blendtec absurdly turbo-charged, turning a smoothie into thin juice. Worse, it couldnt perform the main function required of a blender (crushing ice), as its extreme speed and power made no difference when ice got trapped out of reach. With too many function buttons, piercing noise levels, and an inability to crush ice, we were disappointed with this pricey blender. With only two blades and a jar with limited tapering, this blenders design created air pockets between the blades and the ice so that no matter how fast the blade spun, the cubes remained out of reach.\r
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Americas Test Kitchen is a real 2,500 square foot test kitchen located just outside of Boston that is home to more than three dozen full-time cooks and product testers. Our mission is simple: to develop the absolute best recipes for all of your favorite foods. To do this, we test each recipe 30, 40, sometimes as many as 70 times, until we arrive at the combination of ingredients, technique, temperature, cooking time, and equipment that yields the best, most-foolproof recipe. \r
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More than 1.3 million home cooks rely on Cooks Illustrated and Cooks Country magazines to provide trusted recipes that work, honest ratings of equipment and supermarket ingredients, and kitchen tips.\r
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