At Thrive Cuisine, we highly recommend swapping your traditional store-bought frozen dairy desserts for whole fruit-based soft serve. Whole fruits are packed with antioxidants and phytochemicals which studies have shown keep us functioning at our most optimal levels. Compare this to a dairy-based dessert made primarily of milk and refined sugar and its easy to figure out what the better health choice is (1). The Yonanas and Yonanas Elite both are created to make soft serve "ice cream" out of fruit, but which one should you choose - and should you get one at all?
If you've never seen the Yonanas in action, check out this short video clip!
What We Like About Yonanas
The Yonanas machines are great at what they do. If you want to be able to replace your ice cream habit with a healthier alternative, then it is a great machine to pick up. It's also great for entertaining guests as its fun to use and has a bit of a novelty factor. It's also a great way to get kids to eat their fruits (and possibly veggies if you get creative)! Finally, the Yonanas tend to be affordable machines compared to other bigger kitchen appliances, making it less of a big commitment if you don't use it as much.
Even though we compare the Yonanas to high powered blenders later in this review, it is important to note that the textures aren't going to be exactly the same. Our only consideration was that you don't get overlapping appliances if you can make something extremely similar in the right kind of high powered blender.
What's the Difference Between The Classic and Elite?
Wattage / Power
Dishwasher Safe Parts?
1 Year Protection Against Manufacturer Defects
3 Year Protection Against Manufacturer Defects
13.75" H X 6.25" W X 7.5" D
15.5" H X 6.5" W X 10.25" D
Quieter and more aesthetically pleasing than the classic.
Check Pricing on Yonanas Classic
Check Current Pricing on Yonanas Elite
Given that they are both from the same product line designed to do the same thing, the Yonanas Classic and Yonanas Elite are actually very similar in many regards. In the world of blenders and food processors, the price tag is often correlated to the warranty that the product comes with and the Yonanas is no exception.
As you can see, the upgraded model - or the elite, has a warranty that's 2 years longer than its predecessor, but doesn't offer much of an increase in power. This indicates that what you're paying for mostly is peace of mind. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but in our opinion, this is the major point to consider when choosing between the Elite and the Classic.
The other factors are going to be noise and aesthetic. The Elite is designed to be a quieter unit, perfect for those who live in apartments or with members of the household who go to sleep early. The Elite also has a bit nicer of a look, is a bit bigger, and is manufactured in a few different styles which have the potential to fit your decor.
So at the end of the day its the price, warranty, noisiness, and aesthetics that are going to be the differentiating factors. Consider these 4 points and choose what suits your lifestyle best.
How Does it Yonanas Compare to a High Powered Blender?
When you compare the Yonanas machine to a powerful blender such as a Vitamix or a Blendtec, you're going to notice that the wattage on the blenders is way higher. One reason for this is the Yonanas machines simply do not need as much power. The design of the machine allows the user to push the frozen fruit into the blades with a "stick" very similar to a tamper.
In order for a blender to perform, it has to be able to vortex the ingredients into the blades and keep processing them. This requires much more power to accomplish.
That being said, we wanted to address one of the major limitations of the Yonanas Machines which is that it is designed to be used with frozen fruit. According to the instruction manual, users are instructed to let the fruit thaw for 7 to 10 minutes before pushing it through the machine. When you have a powerful personal or countertop blender such as a Vitamix, Bullet, or Blendtec, you're able to whiz through frozen fruit, nuts, and seeds with no issue. You may need a bit of liquid on the personal ones, but you can still make great soft serve.
Note on High Powered Blenders
If you were interested in getting a high powered blender with a tamper for a comparable price, we have to recommend that you check out this refurbished Vitamix. You'll have all the power you'll ever need and a reliable 5 year warranty to go with it. We prefer to use a little bit of nut milk and fully frozen fruit to make our soft serve and its always a huge hit.
Who Should Get A Yonanas?
Someone With No Blender or a Weak Blender
If you currently don't have a blender or know that yours isn't ideal for producing these kind of desserts then we would highly recommend getting either Yonanas machine. Given that its specially designed to create frozen desserts, you don't have to invest in a really high ticket blender to get the results you want. If you have no plans of making blended sauces, nut butters, or don't have the budget for a super expensive blender, then the Yonanas is the way to go.
Note: If you want the textures to be comparable - a high powered blender with a tamper is the way to go, otherwise you'll most likely have to add extra liquid to get it to blend.
Someone Who Wants to Serve Multiple People
A big advantage that the Yonanas machines have over blenders is that it processes the fruit on an ongoing basis. This means that you can make a bunch of different flavors consecutively. Compare this to a blender where you have to empty the container, reload it, and blend again. If you're serving a bunch of picky guests or just want to make a bunch of flavors of frozen fruit ice cream, a Yonanas unit is the way to go!
Who Shouldn't Get A Yonanas?
Someone Who Wants Lots of Functionality
If you want a machine that can make similar frozen deserts as well as soups, sauces, smoothies, etc. a high powered blender is the way to go. If you can get something with a tamper (like a Vitamix) it will function very similarly to a Yonanas because of the tamper.
Someone Who Has a Powerful Blender
If you've already got a powerful blender such as a Vitamix, it seems like this machine would just take up extra space in our home and wouldn't make much of a difference. We make "nice cream" with our Vitamix all the time in our household and we're able to push fully frozen bananas and cherries right into the blades with the tamper even though a small amount of liquid is sometimes needed. Having multiple appliances with dual functionality tends to be a bit wasteful and one of them tends to sit around collecting dust.
There is an exception to this, though. Like we said earlier - if you want to be able to make multiple flavors of fruit based ice cream continuously, then having the Yonanas on hand wouldn't be such a bad thing, especially if you have the storage space.
(1) To learn more about the benefits of sticking to whole fruits and vegetables check out this presentation by Dr. Joel Fuhrman.