Best Personal Blenders From Consumer Reports' Tests
With these single-serve appliances, smoothies are quick to make—and easy to take on the run
A personal blender and a busy schedule are a delicious mix. Just like that breakfast protein shake after your morning workout—quick, convenient and travel-ready.
Simply stuff a single-serve blending cup with frozen blueberries, leafy spinach, banana slices, almond milk, nonfat Greek yogurt, and maybe some ice, screw on the blade, and let it whirl for a minute or so. Then take the blade off, pop on the lid, and you’re on your way.
Keep in mind that personal blenders aren’t intended for hard-core blending. And while their mixing containers double as portable travel jars, they aren’t limited to power shakes and yogurt-based smoothies. These machines also make it a cinch to prepare healthy soups, salsas, and more.
At Consumer Reports, we test personal blenders by mixing up virgin piña coladas and gauging how well the appliances make icy drinks and smoothies. To assess a blender’s soup-making abilities, we purée vegetables and broth. Our ice-crush test evaluates how well the blenders break up ice alone. Most top-rated personal blenders excel at this task, especially the Ninja brand, which occupies six of the top 11 spots for personal blenders in our ratings.
Below are six personal blenders that are small enough to stash away in a cupboard or even leave on the kitchen counter. Three models combine the best of both worlds: a full-sized blender that has personal-blender attachments. Going that route can come in handy if you’re sometimes serving up family-sized portions. The other three are single-serve personal blenders (no full-sized pitcher attachments), ideal for smaller households.
Full-Sized Blenders with Personal Attachments
CR’s take: This GE blender rates only Good when it comes to pulverizing ice, but it still crushed our icy-drinks test with an Excellent score. So if you choose the right ingredients, it’ll whip up yummy smoothies—or pinã coladas, daiquiris, and margaritas. It also aced our purée test, so you can serve up hearty blended soups, too. This 1,000-watt six-speed blender comes with a 20-ounce to-go cup.
CR’s take: This top-rated Ninja blender base works with a full-sized pitcher or three personal blender jars (included). Powered by 1,500 watts, it earns Excellent ratings in CR’s icy-drinks/smoothies and purée tests, which means it masters thick smoothies and soups. And its crushed-ice performance rates Very Good. According to data from our member survey, the brand’s full-sized and personal blenders both earn Very Good ratings for reliability and satisfaction.
CR’s take: Here’s another Ninja blender, with a full-sized pitcher or three personal blending jars, that’s a smoothie dynamo—rating Excellent for icy drinks and ice crushing, and Very Good for puréeing in our tests. It comes with a vacuum attachment, which sucks oxygen from the jar before blending to whip up smoother, less frothy smoothies, soups, and sauces.
Personal Blenders Without Attachments
CR’s take: This 1,000-watt Breville blender passed our durability assessment with flying colors, rating Excellent. It scored Very Good on its icy-drinks, purée, and convenience tests. The compact 6-by-6-inch personal blender takes up little countertop space and comes with an 8-ounce on-the-go jar and a recipe book. Breville personal blenders rate Excellent for predicted reliability, so you can expect problem-free performance for years.
CR’s take: This Ninja personal blender is an all-around performer. It aced our crushed ice and icy-drinks tests, so it can easily knock out superb mixed drinks and thick fruit smoothies. With two claimed speeds and three cups, it’s just as nifty at puréeing raw ingredients like cauliflower, broccoli, and pumpkin into delicious soups. Like most personal blenders, this one is a little noisy. But it’s a user-friendly workhorse kitchen tool, Excellent in durability and Very Good in convenience and reliability.
CR’s take: Serving up drinks and soups for one is a cinch with this high-performing personal-sized blender from Ninja. It consistently serves up thick soups and smoothies due to Excellent purée and Very Good icy-drinks scores. And its Excellent durability and Very Good reliability rating mean it should consistently serve up these tasty concoctions for years.