ContactMessage BoardsLinks  Home  
Featured Chefs
Gourmet Articles
Current Articles
Tips From The Pro's
What's Cooking?
Food Event & Media News
Archive Articles
Environmental Kitchen
Cookbook Reviews
Recipe File
The Wine Guy
Career Center
Ask An Expert
Blender Challenge
gourmet articlesblender challenge

February 2003
It was not until I purchased a Vita Prep blender that I realized that not all blenders were created equal - I decided this was article material!

We put the blenders of four well-known companies to the test taking the following elements into consideration. Noise level, physical look, color range, materials used for construction, jug type, ease of cleaning, emulsifying, chopping, blending, pureeing and grinding proficiency. These were measured in relation to the machine's price tag and graded like a good old school report - A, B, and C etc.

Kitchen Aid Model KSB5SSOB
List Price $120

The kitchen Aid "5 Speed Professional" series is more gauged towards the home kitchen of a serious cook; it is however readily available though commercial wholesalers. Manufactured in numerous colors the "Professional 5's" construction offers a modern looking piece of equipment. The machine's straight-sided jug is made of stainless steal with the measuring markers logically painted inside the jug. The Kitchen Aid's motor was able to tackle the emulsification work, blending and pureeing without a problem - B+, chopping was a challenge - scoring a C, but was unable to make a dent in the chick pea grinding task - scoring an F. With reference to cleaning - the blade is mounted on a white piece of plastic which will eventually turn brown - not such a good thing. This machine is not too noisy, with the color options taken into account and its good looks it would make a great fit for an open kitchen that needs to finish soups and sauces during service.

Hamilton Beach Model 91555
List Price $620

H.B's blenders are well known on the bar front but not so well used for in the back of the house. So when I opened the box of their 91555 model I was really surprised. From the machine's appearance it looks as if this is Hamilton Beach's response to Vita-Mix's Vita-Prep. The 91555 is a well-built piece of equipment, with a cool, curvaceous retro look. The motor offers three different program cycles with the addition of a pulse action and has a built in safety sensor - the machine stops when the jug is removed. The three program cycles control how quickly the machine achieves full speed and can only be used in conjunction with its timer which runs for up to one minute. The machine's square slanted jug has it measurement markings painted on and its wide bottom offers the easiest cleaning of all the blenders. Put to the test it gets an A+ for all the duties with the exception of grinding where it was a little challenged and scored a B+. For such a powerful machine it is delightfully quiet. With its sturdy construction it offers itself as a well-built addition to any professional kitchen that needs equipment that lasts (or one that has a bunch of six fingered monkeys working in it).

Waring Model Blendfast HPB270
List Price $442

Waring's Blendfast is a good commercial blender. It offers no fancy speed settings (hi and low only) and is really noisy! But with the glamour aspects pushed to the side it is a good workhorse. It blitzed through the basic tasks scoring an A and proved to be the superior of all the machines in the grinding challenge - a definite A+. At a cost of around $442 - $200 less than the other high power machines, it offers itself as a good option if you need several machines within a budget and are not planning to use them in an open kitchen.

Waring Model Quik Stik WSB33
List Price $98

Another good option from the Waring camp is their two speed "Quik Stik" immersion blender - this tool is like a magic wand when it comes to finishing sauces and blending soups. It is super quiet too. This is a great asset for both the professional and home kitchen.

Vita Mix
Model Vita Prep
List Price $765

The Vita-Prep has become infamous throughout North America thanks to its advertising campaign. For international readers, let me elaborate. Each month a well known chef can be found posing butt naked within the pages of Food Arts Magazine with only their Vita-Prep blender for company. But how does it measure up in comparison to the other blenders? It works as hard as the Hamilton Beach and it is as equally as quiet. No task proved too hard scoring a good healthy A. The only aspect that separates these two apart is that Vita's machine does not offer a safety sensor and costs $145 more.

To Summarize
The kitchen Aid "5 Speed Professional" series is a good fit for the home kitchen and a decent good looking blender suitable for light duty tasks in an open kitchen. Waring's Blendfast is a workhorse albeit a noisy one and their Quik Stik is a must have. The Vita Prep is a classy creature but Hamilton Beach's 91555 is just as good but with the bonus of a saftey sensor and a lower price tag, H.B get the thumbs up.

Kitchen Aid
Hamilton Beach
Waring Products
Vita Mix

Back to Top
Copyright © 2008