Years ago, I had my heart so set on a “power blender,” that the very day I got engaged I contemplated adding one to my gift registry. Unfortunately, back then, I could not justify the price and I left it off my list. It took me years before I allowed myself to purchase one,and until then I wrestled with broken containers, burned-out motors, and machines that just did not do the trick.
When I did buy one such blender, I have to admit, it was a Vitamix…and I loved it. But then I was introduced to Blendtec blenders at a blogging conference I attended and they seemed to have a lot of other features that the Vitamix did not have. (Full disclosure–I received a Blendtec Designer Series blender in order to write my article.)
I know from experience that kitchen “real estate” is a precious commodity in many households. There’s never enough space on the counter (if there even is a counter), and having all your kitchen gadgets out looks messy. First of all, with everything the Blendtec blender does, you won’t need a lot of those appliances any longer. (One problem already taken care of!) If you’re into how your appliances look aesthetically, the Blendtec Designer Series wins in that category. The blender I own is black–sleek, rounded edges, and very unobtrusive. It has a touch pad with six pre-programmed blender cycle icons that are back-lit and disappear completely when the blender is off. This eight-pound machine is only 15 inches tall, so it will fit tucked away under most cabinets with no trouble. (Unlike my Vitamix.)
But aside from the look, performance is another major factor (yes, I will admit, it is the MOST important factor) to consider when stepping up to the big boys’ camp of blenders. And the Blendtec blender performed beautifully in that arena as well.
Smoothie making is probably the LEAST complicated thing you would expect your standard Waring or KitchenAid blender to be able do, and yet, I have found that those brands still don’t have the ability to crush the ice or puree frozen fruit to my satisfaction. The Blendtec produced terrific smoothies–there’s even have a pre-programmed Smoothie setting that makes it a total no-brainer. (I do have to admit that I preferred my smoothie just a little “smoother-er,” so I ran the blender a few seconds more manually using their touch-centered slide control–and then, perfection!) And that’s just the beginning of what you can create with your Blendtec. You can also make juices, dressings, soups, yogurt, sauces, spreads, marinades, salsas, batters, dips, and more. Did I mention that the Blendtec Total Blender comes with a beautiful 213-page spiral-bound recipe book?
With the most powerful motor available for home use, 1560 watts, the hard-working machine lets you know exactly how hard it is working–it is LOUD–(but so is the Vitamix), so you can expect the neighbors to know when you’re using it. (Perhaps it might be a good idea to make extra of whatever you are making and share it with them–they’ll love it!)
The Designer Series blender I have came with a Wild Side (5-sided) jar. It is made of BPA-free polyester and its shape makes scraping every last bit of juice, batter, etc from the container a breeze. It also apparently has a better “blending vortex” than its competitors. (I don’t really know what that means, but it sounds like something out of The Matrix, and I think that’s a good thing.) The total capacity is 90 fluid ounces–and that is A LOT. It’s perfect for hot soups, juices and dips for a crowd.
When you don’t need such a large container, and as we empty nesters know that’s pretty often the case these days, the Blendtec Twister Jar (just loved this!) is the perfect substitute. The smaller (also BPA-free) jar fits right on the same housing and can also be used for your thickest recipes. You can even grind up grains (I made rice flour–it was terrific!), nut butters (I’ve got some terrific almond butter in my fridge right now!), hummus, pasta, bread dough, and homemade baby food purees (and someday I hope to make use of that knowledge, but NOT quite yet, boys.)
Would I recommend the Blendtec Designer Series blender? Yes! Considering the price, do I think it is a major investment? Yes! BUT, aren’t we worth it? YES!
Here’s a recipe for a wonderful (and seasonal) Pumpkin Smoothie that I’ve been enjoying everyday since I got my Blendtec blender.
2/3c. pumpkin puree
1 1/2 dates, pitted
1 serving vanilla protein (with whey) powder
1 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/4 frozen banana
1/2c. ice cubes
Add all ingredients to the Wild Side container in the order listed. Press the “Smoothie” icon on the touchpad. Pour into two large glasses and enjoy!