Being a vegan in 2018 means that you're flooded on a daily basis with awesome new recipes to try. It's both a gift and a curse. Plant-based cuisine has come a long way. If you're following a raw vegan diet or love vegan junk food, it is essential to have the right blender. Whether you're making acai bowls, hummus, vegan cheese or nice cream, we've got your back.
Here are the best blenders for vegans in 2018, plus everything you need to know about them:
In case you don’t have time to read the full article – here’s the blenders we picked and a brief summary as to why:
*Use any of the links to check pricing on Amazon
As you become more acquainted with plant-based cooking, you'll start to notice that there is an endless list of tasks that your blender is required to do. Here are a few of that things that we find ourselves blending most often:
Because of their starchy texture and sweet flavor profile, bananas happen to make the perfect base for healthy vegan ice creams, aka "nice creams". The video below featuring Dr. Fuhrman shows just how easy it is with a powerful blender.
You can also use a banana ice cream machine like a Yonanas. We prefer going the blender route simply because it is far more versatile, but having a machine built for the task can also be a good thing.
Hummus can be made with chickpeas or pretty much any other legume. Even edamame hummus is delicious if you season it with miso paste, wasabi, and sesame seeds.
All of the blenders on this list are more than capable of making hummus. Not only are the motors powerful enough to blend the chickpeas into a smooth consistency, but the blenders are engineered to get the ingredients to the blades without getting stuck on the sides.
The most common vegan cheeses are blended mixtures of cashews, nutritional yeast, and lemon juice. Having a good blender gives you two main advantages when making vegan cheese:
You can also make actual spreadable and hard cheeses like the video below shows:
How to make a homemade raw vegan cheese using your blender
You can still make vegan nacho cheese with a sub-par blender, except you need to soak the nuts to get things smooth. Even then, you still might come out with less than ideal results.
Store-bought nut milks (almond, cashew, soy, rice, flax, etc.) can be pretty expensive. The same goes for nut butters.
Having the right blender for nut butters and nut milks will give you the ability to save a ton of money every month.
Rather than buying watered down cartons of almond milk, you can make your own at home. Using a custom recipe also gives you the ability to make them creamier and more delicious. All you need to do is invest up-front in the bulk ingredients and the blender!
If you live in the California area, then you've probably had an Acai bowl. Think of them kind of like a thick soup, except its a fruit smoothie topped with all sorts of different textures. This can include bananas, sliced granola, and coconut flakes.
If you have a blender good enough to make a thick smoothie (watery ones won't work), you can simply pour it into a bowl and throw your favorite toppings on it. And trust us, the final product would be a fraction of the price at a fancy juice bar.
Quantifying how well a blender is going to perform is difficult. However, everything you need for plant-based cuisine is going to come down to two factors:
Here's why these attributes are important...
Many people think that sharp blades are an important feature of a good blender. However, nothing can be farther from the truth.
Although some sharp blade designs work, they tend to "cut" ingredients rather than pulverize them. Cutting and chopping ingredients won't get them to a smooth and creamy consistency.
Additionally, if a blender if dependent on the sharpness of the blades for its performance than you can be sure that it will get worse over time. This is because blades dull out! If you have dull blades to begin with, the blender performance should remain consistent throughout its lifetime.
A powerful motor and the right blades are important, but if you can't get the food to come in contact with the blades, then nothing is going to blend!
Sound confusing? Here's how and why this could happen...
There's a number of ways that a blender brand can solve this problem.
In the case of a personal blenders (such as the Nutribullet) you have the ability to easy shake the base itself to get things moving. Personal Blenders are also small enough to take the blades off, shuffle the ingredients a bit, and start another cycle. Most of the time, these actions aren't always necessary because the blenders are built to create a vortex powerful enough to keep things moving. However, it is nice having the option available.
For counter-top blenders, the solutions are a bit more creative. Manufacturers like Vitamix and Blendtec both have ways to keep ingredients moving towards the blades.
In the case of the Vitamix, it is their signature tamper. The tamper is essentially a plunger is used to push ingredients into the blades from the top of the blender jar. Each Vitamix jar has a hole big enough to fit the tamper so that it can reach the ingredients without risk of it touching the blades.
Blendtec has their own device which helps keep the ingredients moving in the jar. It's called a Twister Jar.
The Blendtec Twister Jar is typically sold separately, but it is a massive upgrade to any Blendtec. It goes in from the top, kind of like a tamper, and has a knob that the user turns. As the user turns the knob it keeps ingredients off of the sides and right into the powerful vortex!
Disclaimer: We're not sure if the manufacturer recommends shaking the base, but its something that we do a lot because it works. Do it at your own risk!
When making your final decision, you're going to have to choose between getting a smaller personal blender and a more powerful counter-top unit. Unless, that is, if you can afford both!
Each type of blender comes with its own set of pros and cons. Let's explore those below...
Now that you've got a full understanding of what to look for in a blender, let's explore our top models...
Any Vitamix is going to be an obvious winner, but the Vitamix 5300 (similar to the Vitamix 6500) stands out from the crowd for several reasons. Some of these reasons are exclusive to the Vitamix brand, but others are particular to this model.
The first reason we think this blender is great for vegans is because of its hot soup function. Yes, you can make soup from hot to cold, directly in this blender, without using a stove. There are also a bunch of raw vegan food soups to make! Either way, it's super easy with this machine.
Because Vitamix models are so powerful, they have the ability to enough friction inside the jar to heat things up. Additionally, the jars are designed for proper ventilation so that things aren't going to explode while you do it.
The second reason we love this blender is because of its tamper. Like we mentioned earlier, because you can push things into the blades, you'll be able to make sure nothing gets stuck to the sides when you're making your hummus or acai bowls.
You can even drink nut milk straight after blending, because the pulp gets so finely broken down.
Thirdly, the Vitamix 5300 is an absolute power blender. You'll be able to liquefy nuts without soaking and blend almost any plant-based raw food to a smooth puree.
Finally, making nice cream (banana ice cream) is a breeze as you can do it with little to no liquid. Push the bananas into the blades with the tamper, wait for the vortex, and enjoy!
We like the refurbished models because they can generally be found cheaper than a new one. New units come with a 7 year warranty, but you still get 5 years with the refurbished.
This is one of the best machines from the the Magic Bullet family in our opinion.
While the Nutribullet Pro 900 isn't as powerful as the first blender on this list, we think its a great single-serve blender and a viable Vitamix alternative. It's a well-designed personal blender that can handle all of the essential vegan tasks if you show it a little love.
Here's what we mean:
When it comes to making hummus, smoothie bowls, and nut milks this blender can do it all. We know because we actually make all these things in the Nutribullet 900 on a regular basis.
However, because its not as powerful as a Vitamix or other counter-top blender there are a few things that we do to make it perform like one.
When it comes to smoothie bowls, there's not really much to say. You'll need to use a bit of plant-based milk to get the blend started since there's no tamper and a weaker motor, but you'd be surprised how little it takes and how smooth and creamy the final product comes out.
And although it goes without saying, quick shakes with vegan protein powder are a breeze with this type of blender.
Nice cream is not ideal to make in this blender if you're not using any liquid. However, throw in just a splash of soy milk and you'll be able to make a thick and smooth blend.
If we're making a vegan cheese sauce, simply soaking the cashews for 30 minutes to an hour beforehand makes the process a whole lot easier. It can still come out good if you don't soak them, but you may find that they aren't fully liquefied.
The one limitation is that you can't make hot soup as there's no ventilation and the blender wasn't designed for that function. You can however make a smooth blend and then heat it up on the stove after. If you're interested in a bullet that can make soup, check out our article on the best nutribullet model where we feature the Rx.
Let's also not forget that the blades attach to the jar for each blending job. This makes the entire blender super easy to clean without the use of a clean function.
Finally, this blender is likely to be more budget friendly than some of the others on this list. Although it only comes with a one year warranty, it's not too bad considering the typical price of the Pro 900.
Blendtec blenders are kind of thought of as the Vitamix rival in the blender world. Having used both brands, it's honestly hard to pick a favorite.
The thing that makes Blendtec stands out is its raw power. It has a 3-peak horsepower motor which is actually greater than that of the Vitamix.
Despite its power and well-designed Wildside jar, there are still situations where having a tamper is useful. Sometimes your ingredients simply won't make it to the blades.
That's why the Blendtec's Twister Jar is great. Some might argue that it's superior to the tamper, but we aren't going to take sides.
The only problem with the Twister Jar is that it is sold separately.
This Blendtec has a bunch of other features that aren't available in the earlier models of the Vitamix namely in the form of pre-programmed settings. Pre-programmed settings aren't required to make an awesome smoothie, hummus, or nice cream. However, they do come in handy, especially if you're in a rush.
Say you're making a green smoothie in the morning. Simply throw all the ingredients in and press the smoothie button. During the cycle, you can do other tasks while the smoothie is being blended.
The Blendtec also has a hot soup setting which means that it can also perform this awesome function.
You also have the option of operating the blender with the variable speed buttons as well as the pulse button. This allows you to create a powerful vortex by cranking it up slowly or do some quick mincing/chopping using a brief pulse.
Finally, as a refurbished blender, it comes with a 3-year warranty. You can get a new Blendtec blenders with a 7-year warranty, but it simply depends on your budget and risk tolerance.
Now that you understand all of the essential criteria for getting a blender as a vegan, the final choice is up to you. If you want a blender that's up for almost any task, small or large, go for a Vitamix or a Blendtec. But if you're a single person and simply want to make some smoothies, and easy vegan cheeses go for the Nutribullet or another powerful personal blender.
Epic vegan recipes await!