Top Tips On Choosing Your New Juicer
If you’ve landed here because like me, you need to know how to compare juicers properly to get the best choice for your family’s needs, then like myself you’re looking for a robust quality juicer that produces great juice, dry pulp, doesn’t cost the earth – and is easy clean.
Welcome to my nightmare!
We’ve had the same Champion juicer which was given to us as a wedding present twenty years ago, but recently it has started to issue distress signals that no replacement parts can help and truth be told, it’s pretty battered now.
I’m genuinely surprised to still have it, testimony to a well designed and engineered appliance, (plus a ready supply of spare bits) that it has served us delicious healthy fresh juice at least once a day for so long.
The high pitched squeal and lowered performance is it seems, an early indicator of motor failure and it sure sounds tortured to me. I love my kitchen gadgets, especially those used every day, you get to know them well over the years, making it a real wrench when they finally pack up – and unlike the Champion, usually without the good manners to warn you first!
Champion juicers don’t seem to have changed much if at all over the last two decades, I guess why mess with a good design. But Champions are big and bulky on the counter taking a lot of space – and they are too heavy for frequently moving around.
So this time I’m looking for a smaller lighter weight juicer that leaver a smaller footprint on the counter, the aim by the end of the exercise is to come up with a list of the top 10 juicers and pick from that.
Funnily enough I love the fruit pulp included in my juice, so for great smoothies plus general cooking purposes I decided just before last Christmas to invest in a Vitamix Blender. It works for me and I love it – any fruit you like (peeled or not depending on what it is) washed and then throw into the blender with a handful of ice-cubes.
There you have it, delicious tangy smoothies holding to the three F’s for busy people:
• Filling in five minutes.
A tentative question aimed at not replacing the Juicer and using the blender has so far either fallen on deaf ears or been met with stiff opposition – which isn’t just from the kids.
To be fair we all love juice – the kids like the fruit and vegetable juice as well, not my favorite I’ve got to admit.
But as Himself has fallen into their camp, like it or not (and I don’t really mind) I have had to begin navigating the long and confusing road to buying a new one, which is why this post on how to compare juicers came about
Yes, I could leave it to my husband, I could leave it to my greyhound as well, but would you?
So How Do You Compare Juicers?
Firstly, the real truth is that to get the very best out of every type of produce, in theory you really need four different types of juicer! I know – hang loose, it’s not that bad.
To juice soft fruits like blueberries and strawberries, you are as well to put them in a blender, bananas, peaches, anything soft and pulpy is going to clog up the mesh screen in a masticating juicer and even if it doesn’t clog it is going to be a very slow process.
Yes, centrifugal juicers will do it – but you may like the results from a simple blender more.
For extracting orange juice there is nothing more efficient that a specific citrus juicer. Of course you can juice them in a centrifugal juicer, but you’ll have to peel them. The oil in the peel of citrus fruits is very bitter, but as a citrus juicer works differently the oils never get near the juice.
Most of us have a common blender or a hand blender in the kitchen and that does great for the soft fruits. Those wanting a lot of orange juice really should consider a proper citrus juicer. Inexpensive at around $20 for a motorized one, you’ll get the most juice per lb of fruit from them.
It is important to set down exactly what you want from your juicer because they do vary hugely in what they do and how they do it, something which is also reflected in the price you pay. You can read more about masticating juicers compared to centrifugal juicers and how each works here.
Masticating juicers don’t handle soft fruit well, nor get the most juice out of the pulp, so if its soft fruit you’re going to be juicing rather than crispy apples and vegetables, the centrifugal style of juicer will probably suit you best.
The best masticating juicers leave a very dry pulp behind having squeezed every last drop out of the produce, and if you think you’ll juice a lot, or are going on one of the juicing diet plans, a higher end juicer is going to save you money from the start off.
One of the chief complaints on both types of cheap juicers is the amount of juice left behind. This is serious if you are going to juice every day for several people as the amount of juice obtained has to be paid for in raw produce. True, you can run the pulp through several times, but do you always have the time?
In centrifugal juicers, the motor speed is important because they depend on their spin speed to separate juice from pulp. However, it’s also this spinning process that pumps air and heat into your juice, degrading the quality of it.
Juice from a centrifugal juicer won’t keep as fresh for long because the introduction of air begins the decomposition process, even in the refrigerator. Without that air, juice from a masticating juicer will last in a refrigerated airtight container for several days and taste as fresh as when it was processed.
Another concern is feeder chute size. The wider the chute, the less prep and chopping of produce you need to do first – but with centrifugal juicers, a wide chute can be shall we say, a disadvantage!
Centrifugal juicers have one other bad habit and that’s spitting! Because the fast spinning blades are just at the base of the ‘fruit chute’ you have to be quick to cove the chute entrance or find you’ve redecorated the kitchen with a fruity 3D splatter – I so hate cleaning ceilings don’t you?
On the same thread, any juicer that isn’t used because it’s a pain to clean up afterwards is a waste of money – you won’t use it. Always look for one that comes apart and cleans really easy, you won’t bother to juice if it doesn’t.
The size of the pulp basket is another point to consider – will you need to keep emptying it? Or do you want one with a pulp ejector?
Best Rated Juicers
The best rated juicers will nearly always have plenty of reviews – if two criticisms from reviewers are focused on the same issue – consider moving on to another product, unless the problem is not significant. Personally I think if someone has taken the time to write an honest but critical review, one should pay attention. Oh, and good advice is to avoid anything where reviewers report leaking in any quantity!
You can’t judge new products easily either way with just a few write-ups, but don’t discount them either, very new products won’t have had time to accumulate them yet.
Check The Warranty Length
When you’ve finished reading here, do go check out the post on which is the best juicer buy and keep reading, because some quite inexpensive juicers like the Omega 4000 have a fifteen year limited warranty. Now that’s a long time and generally born out of manufacturing confidence that on the whole, they won’t break down – always a positive sign and crucial with the more expensive masticating juicer models.
If you are looking to pay $99 then the warranty is going to be less – a year or maybe two if you choose wisely. Omega seem to offer good warranty lengths for the money, with the budget juicer Omega O2110 at only $99 offering 5 years.
Sticking to my principles of buying good quality gadgets where they carry a heavy workload, if you can’t afford the one that you want, wait until you can. If you’ve got your heart set on one in particular, anything else you buy will probably be a false economy and almost certainly a disappointment – the voice of experience speaking here!
There are a wide range of juicers available in every price bracket and here is where I thought it could get confusing, but once you delve into them a bit more deeply, there are some clear winners and losers, so paring down the list to a top ten is actually quite straightforward.
Having researched different brands one by one and read a selection of the reviews, a few leap out in each category of juicer and at this stage it’s a good idea to make a note of any pro’s and con’s – they all have pros and cons!
For me, each ‘possible’ has gone under one of three headings – Centrifugal, Masticating or Twin Gear Triturating Juicer – and I have a my top 10 juicers on a list to look at more closely, the final whittling down process can begin.
Now you’ve read how to compare juicers, part 2 of this post – The Best Juicer Buy is now available here and on it are the top ten juicers potential the family (me if I have my way) is going to choose from, plus clear explanations of how each type of juicer works.
From here, investigating and comparing the ten juicing machines left on the list should be a lot easier. If not I’ll leave it to the greyhound!
If you have any more questions then do check out this site too – lots more on the healthy benefits of juicing here – or drop me a line them below and most times I’ll get back to you within a day, often faster.