Is a Vacuum Blender Like the Ninja FreshVac Better for Smoothies?
Consumer Reports puts the Ninja and three other vacuum blenders to the test
A vacuum blender isn't the appliance mash-up the name suggests. Rather, it's just a blender with an extra mode that sucks out oxygen from the jar before blending.
Manufacturers say that in vacuum mode their blenders serve up smoother, less frothy smoothies, soups, and sauces—and preserve nutrients. And though we did not test the nutritional claims, we did run four vacuum blenders through our labs. The batch includes models from Dash, Kuvings, Ninja, and Tribest that range in price from about $170 to $650.
"In vacuum mode, all four blenders made smoothies that were smoother, less foamy, and more consistent in texture than the smoothies we made in regular mode," says Cindy Fisher, who oversees our blender tests.
In addition to our standard tests, we set out to see whether a vacuum blender, with its claims of higher performance, could serve up results on a par with Vitamix, the brand that dominates our blender ratings.
We made fruit smoothies in the Ninja FreshVac, $170, and compared them with smoothies made in the Vitamix 5200, $450, a top-performing blender. In our informal taste test, staffers found that the smoothies were comparable, though the Vitamix drinks were still slightly smoother, with no hints of berry seeds.
But we're splitting hairs. All four of the vacuum blenders reviewed below, which appear in alphabetical order, earn a Very Good score overall—above average, but not Excellent.
If you want the absolute best blender, check out our blender ratings and buying guide.
CR's take: The Dash Cold Fusion Vacuum DVB300RMRD earns a Very Good rating in our ice-crushing tests, serving up ice that's similar in texture to a snow cone. The vacuum pump is housed in the base, and you can use the vacuum function with the 6-cup blender or the smaller travel container. This 800-watt blender's auto setting switches from vacuuming straight to blending. Like the other vacuum blenders we tested, the Dash is 18 inches tall, so measure the clearance between your kitchen countertop and cabinet to be sure it will fit. Warranty: 1 year.
CR's take: The Kuvings Vacuum SV500S earns an Excellent score in our purée tests; in regular mode, this 1,700-watt blender serves up smooth smoothies and soups even when made of hard veggies, like carrots. The Kuvings' vacuum pump is built into the unit's base. One setting automatically switches the blender from vacuuming to blending mode. The container holds 5 cups, and the smaller travel jar can be used for storing blended drinks. Warranty: 7 years.
CR's take: Ninja full-sized blenders earn an Excellent rating in predicted brand reliability, according to our member survey, and owner satisfaction is high. The 1,100-watt Ninja Smart Screen Duo with FreshVac CT661V comes with a battery-powered vacuum pump that you attach to the top of the blender when you want to vacuum out air before blending. The container holds an impressive 9 cups, and it includes two travel cups. Warranty: 1 year.
CR's take: The Tribest Dynapro Commercial Vacuum DPS1050 earns only a Fair in our noise tests, making it the noisiest of this bunch. This 1,865-watt model has a handheld battery-powered vacuum pump that you attach to the top of the blender. The jar holds 8 cups. Most blenders we test have a hole in the lid so that you can easily add food when blending—but not the Tribest. Warranty: 15 years.