Quick Answer: Most blenders have the ability of handling at least some ice. The higher-end your blender is, the better it will be at crushing it. Cheap blenders (those under $30, are probably going to have issues if you try to do anything beyond 1-3 small cubes).
If you're planning on testing if your blender can crush ice, here are a few additional tips that you'll find helpful...
Also See: Most of these smoothie blenders will have no issues with crushing ice.
Tips for Crushing Ice in a Blender
- Add lots of liquid: The more liquid you add, the easier that your blender will be able to create a vortex and crush the ice. It puts far less stress on the blades and motor to move liquid around than to move solid ice cubes.
If you want to make pure crushed ice and don't want it to be watery, add a little bit of liquid at a time and pulse. Add liquid a little bit between pulsing cycles to keep it from turning into too much of a slush.
- Start slow: If your blender has variable speeds, try starting it on a slow cycle and gradually turning it up. Just like the previous tip, this helps create a vortex and makes ice crushing way easier.
- Leave lots of room: Don't overload your blender too high with ice cubes. You should leave some room in the jar for things to bounce around.
- Don't pack it too tight: If your blender has a tamper or other device for packing ice, be careful of making a really dense mound of ice. This could clog things up and prevent the cubes at the top from being crushed.
- Let the Ice Sit Out: By leaving the ice outside of the freezer for 5-10 minutes it will soften slightly and make it easier to crush. Something to consider if you're having issues.
- Check your user manual: Some blenders have thin glass jars or plastic that isn't suitable for lots of ice crushing. You may risk cracking your jar if you try it with one of these models.
I've done a bunch of ice crush tests on my YouTube channel. You'll want to see this test I did in the Nutri Ninja Auto IQ.
You may also be interested in our article on the best Ninja blender.