Immersion blenders are a wonderful kitchen item to help you make smoothies, soups or sauces when you just don't get the kitchen space or the time to whip out a more conventional countertop blender. However, not all immersion blenders are made the same, and it's important to know what to look for in these handheld blenders so you can find the right one for your kitchen without breaking the bank.
An immersion blender is a stick-shaped kitchen appliance that allows the user to blend ingredients in the container the food is already in, removing the need to transfer food from a pot or pan to another machine for blending. An immersion blender can blend, whip, pulse, emulsify, crush or puree ingredients, such as fruit, vegetables, ice or liquids of any temperature. This makes the immersion blender great for recipes such as soups, sauces, dressings, smoothies and dips. Immersion blenders are also much easier to clean than traditional countertop blenders.
These hand-held blenders are lightweight, comfortable to hold and typically easy to clean. When purchasing an immersion blender, some factors to take into consideration are cost, accessories, performance and durability.
Most immersion blenders come in just under $100, but cheaper ones will run under $50. The higher-end immersion blenders offer more speed and variance, so if you plan on using a stick blender for multiple elaborate meals a day, investing in the higher quality model will definitely be worth it.
The Breville BSB510XL control grip immersion blender is a powerful 280-watt, hand-held blender with an ergonomic handle. The Breville is powerful enough to crush ice, but has a non-scratch base to avoid damaging pots and pans.
The Breville immersion blender also has 15 different speeds, can blend ingredients up to eight inches in depth and has a bell-shaped base to reduce suction, allowing you to have full control when blending large amounts of food. It also comes with a chopping bowl that doubles as a storage container, a whisk attachment and a 42-ounce blending jug. The Breville immersion blender features a six-foot power cord, making it convenient to use in almost any area of the kitchen.
The Cuisinart CSB-76BC Smart Stick immersion blender is designed for one-handed operation and features easy-to-use push controls. The lock ability ensures the blender won't operate until the user is ready to turn it on. This blender comes in two speeds, low and high, and weighs less than three pounds. It has a powerful 200-watt motor that can blend, puree, whip or pulse foods and it provides a protective blade guard to help prevent splattering of foods. This particular stick blender also features a stainless steel blending shaft and comes with a two-cup plastic beaker.
The KitchenAid KHB2561OB 5-speed hand blender offers a powerful 200-watt motor with an eight-inch blender arm to reach deep inside pots and pans. The rubber hand-grip makes the blender easy and comfortable to hold. This stick blender has five speeds, allowing for more specialized blending options The KitchenAid immersion blender comes with a wide variety of attachments and accessories -- there are three interchangeable blade options that blend, crush, puree and froth food, while the whisk attachment can be used to emulsify, whip and cream. It also comes with a two-and-a-half cup chopper container, as well as a one-liter blending pitcher. While you can purchase this blender in a stainless steel variety, this will add about $100 to its price.
The Cuisinart CSB-75BC Smart Stick immersion blender is a basic, efficient and, most importantly, cheap hand blender. It features a 200-watt motor that can blend, puree, whip and emulsify ingredients with ease, and its two speed settings (low and high) are perfect for typical everyday usage. The Cuisinart immersion blender has a detachable, stainless steel blender shaft, which is dishwasher-safe. This blender does come with a two-cup plastic beaker that is both microwaveable and dishwasher safe. There is also a blade guard that helps reduce food splashing.