Best Blenders for Making Smoothies

Cuisinart, Ninja, and Vitamix are good choices to jump-start your day

Best blenders for smoothies: view from the top of a blender.
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Making smoothies at home gives you control over what you’re consuming, allowing you to keep an eye on the sugar content, include healthy fats, and load up on greens or other vegetables.

You’ll find over 70 full-sized blenders in Consumer Reports’ ratings. We put each through a battery of tests, including two that speak directly to a blender’s ability to make smooth smoothies.

How We Test Blenders
In the first, our icy-drinks tests, we make batches of nonalcoholic piña coladas and use sieves of various mesh sizes to evaluate smoothness and thickness. “If a blender rates Excellent in this test, you can expect a smooth, consistent texture, especially when blending strawberries, bananas, and other soft ingredients,” says Cindy Fisher, CR’s chief blender tester. A Very Good rating means there are tiny bits in the mix. 

And if you’re going to be blending apples, carrots, and other hard items, or adding greens, be sure to check out the results of our puréeing test. Certain greens are tough to blend; we include parsley in our puree test to see how blenders handle the challenge. “An Excellent rating indicates the blender serves up smooth smoothies and soups, with no stringy greens,” says Fisher. 

The Overall Score for each model combines results from these and other tough lab tests with data on predicted reliability and owner satisfaction from our latest survey of CR members about their experiences with 29,031 blenders purchased between 2008 and 2018.

Best Blenders for Smoothies
Here are six full-sized blenders, listed in alphabetical order, that will serve up terrific smoothies for years. They all ace our icy-drinks test, and some are even Excellent at puréeing, a rare achievement among the models we’ve tested.

Check out our blender ratings for all of the details plus more options, and our buying guide for tips. 

Go to Consumer Reports' 2019 Holiday Gift Guide for updates on deals, expert product reviews, insider tips on shopping, and much more.

Breville The Q BBL820SHY1BUS1
Breville The Q BBL820SHY1BUS1

    Breville The Q BBL820SHY1BUS1

    CR's take: The Q BBL820SHY1BUS1 pulverizes frozen fruits and renders even the stringiest produce into a smooth liquid, earning it Excellent ratings in both the icy-drinks test and puree test. It does well in the ice-crushing category, too, if you ever decide to swap a smoothie for a snow cone. Breville is one of few blender brands to score an Excellent for owner satisfaction, meaning CR members would highly recommend Breville blenders to friends and family.

    Cuisinart Hurricane Pro 3.5 Peak HP CBT-2000
    Cuisinart Hurricane Pro 3.5 Peak...

      Cuisinart Hurricane Pro 3.5 Peak...

      CR’s take: The Cuisinart Hurricane Pro CBT-2000 earns a Very Good rating in our ice-crushing tests, turning out ice similar in texture to a snow cone. It holds 8 cups and is a whiz at puréeing. The container is plastic, as is the case with all of the blenders featured here. Plastic can absorb stains and odors, so it’s best to clean it right after use. While all blenders are loud, this one is a little noisier than others on this list.

      Ninja Professional NJ600
      Ninja Professional NJ600

        Ninja Professional NJ600

        CR’s take: As a brand, Ninja full-sized blenders earn an Excellent rating in predicted reliability, according to our member survey. The 1,000-watt Ninja Professional NJ600 is a CR Best Buy. It combines impressive performance and an appealing price. The Ninja's removable blade helps make cleanup a cinch and is a reason this model did very well in our convenience tests.

        Ninja Smart Screen DUO with FreshVac CT661V
        Ninja Smart Screen DUO with...

          Ninja Smart Screen DUO with...

          CR’s take: Ninja blenders garner a Very Good rating in owner satisfaction in our member survey. The 1100-watt Ninja Smart Screen Duo with FreshVac CT661V is a CR Best Buy, and comes with a battery-powered vacuum pump that attaches to the top of the blender when you want to vacuum out air before blending. Why would you want to do that? Our tests found that in vacuum mode, the Ninja makes smoothies that are smoother, less foamy, and more consistent in texture than smoothies made in regular mode.

          Vitamix Professional Series 750
          Vitamix Professional Series 750

            Vitamix Professional Series 750

            CR’s take: The Vitamix Professional Series 750 easily serves up fine smoothies, with ice the texture of snow—perfect when margaritas are in order. And Vitamix as a brand rates Excellent for predicted reliability. This 1,650-watt blender holds 8 cups and is a master at puréeing. In fact, due to the friction created by the fast-whirring blades, it can actually make hot soup. Following a Vitamix recipe for tortilla soup, testers used the highest speed to blend stock, vegetables, and seasonings for 5 minutes. The result? Smoothly blended hot soup.

            Vitamix 5200
            Vitamix 5200

              Vitamix 5200

              CR’s take: You’ll see nine Vitamix full-sized models in CR’s ratings; this is the best one that goes for less than $500. The Vitamix 5200 has an 8-cup capacity and a seven-year warranty. It’s also skilled in more than smoothies—it can make hot soup, like the Vitamix above. At 20 inches, this model is on the tall side. Measure your undercabinet space before you buy any blender. You can compare dimensions in our ratings.

              Want more budget options? Check out the best blenders for $100 or less.

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              Full-Sized Blenders Rated
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              Perry Santanachote

              A multidimensional background in lifestyle journalism, recipe development, and anthropology impels me to bring a human element to the coverage of home kitchen appliances. When I'm not researching dishwashers and blenders or poring over market reports, I'm likely immersed in a juicy crossword puzzle or trying (and failing) to love exercise. Find me on Facebook