While a juicer and a blender may seem like they’re the same thing, these two common kitchen appliances are worlds apart! They mainly differ in their functions.
These functions directly affect the nutritional value of the final product and will affect which one people buy.
Are you looking to reduce your fiber intake? Increase your nutrient intake? Simply absorb these nutrients quicker?
Believe it or not, but juicers and blenders will yield different results!
So, what is the difference between a juicer and a blender? The biggest difference is that blenders blend together all of the ingredients without separating the pulp from the juice. Juicers also process the ingredients but remove the fiber (pulp) from the liquid.
Today, we will be looking at exactly what a juicer and a blender are, the different functions they have how they affect the nutritional content of juices, and finally, which makes a healthier product and which is easier to use.
What Is A Juicer?
Juicers are age-old appliances and arguably one of the most popular to date. They are mainly used to extract the juice from fresh fruits, vegetables, and leafy greens.
They make extremely refreshing and flavorful beverages that can be consumed for simple enjoyment, for various dietary requirements, or a wide range of other health reasons.
A juicer is an appliance that extracts the flavorful liquid from fresh ingredients and leaves behind the fibers.
These ingredients can include anything like berries, stone fruits, root vegetables, leafy greens—virtually anything fresh and juicy that can be eaten in its raw form
Some of the most popular ingredients that are juices include apples, citrus, pears, kale, spinach, cucumbers, and carrots.
The fresh fruit or vegetables are inserted into a tube and is fed into the machine.
The tube helps protect your hand from the blades inside that basically continuously chops the produce. This blade is extremely sharp to ensure as much juice is extracted.
The liquid is then separated from the solid fibers and funneled into a glass or an attached container (depending on the type of juicer you get).
Types Of Juicer
There are 3 main types of juicers: masticating juicers, centrifugal juicers, and citrus juicers. Each of these varies slightly and if you are looking for an appliance for a very specific reason, then this part is very important.
Masticating juicers (also called cold-pressed juicers or slow juicers) have a long tube into which the raw fruits and vegetables are fed.
This tube leads the ingredients to a chamber where they are then slowly pressed by a rotating auger (a long spiral-shaped blade). These long blades help press and grind the produce into small bits.
The pulp is then pressed against a screen. This is where the liquid is separated from the fiber. The liquid usually goes into a container or glass and the pulp is dispensed into a separate container.
With these types of juicers, the tube is usually very narrow so you have to cut the fruits and vegetables into relatively tiny pieces. This will make the whole juice-making process longer, however, there are benefits to it.
Masticating juicers provide you with a more nutrient-dense beverage because it does not introduce as much heat and oxygen to the ingredients compared to a centrifugal juicer.
This juicer also tends to yield a higher amount of liquid than other juicers because of the slow and effective process.
Centrifugal juicers work much faster compared to masticating juicers. This is usually the go-to household juicing appliance as it is perfect for on-the-run mornings.
They are also usually small appliances making them perfect for small kitchens or ones that are already packed with kitchen goodies. This is definitely a more convenient juicer.
However, its biggest downside is that it a lot of nutrients are lost due to oxidation and a small amount of heat (from the rapidly spinning blades) that the ingredients are exposed to when they are being processed.
These juicers also have a tube through which fresh ingredients are fed. The ingredients then go into a large cavity where extremely fast-spinning blades help chop the ingredients.
These blades help cut back on prep work and the need to cut ingredients into tinier pieces—again, making this type of juicer a more convenient option.
These we aren’t going to talk about too much seeing as they have basically only one function: juicing citrus fruits.
While this is a very common ingredient to juice, this appliance has been specifically designed to press citrus fruits and only citrus fruits.
These appliances have a unique citrus juicing tool (like the handheld juicing tool) that turns to helps release the liquid from the fiber. The juice runs down into a container while the rind and fiber attached are discarded.
Pros And Cons Of Juicing
Juicing fresh produce has a ton of benefits. It actually helps a lot of people consume more fruits and vegetables in a different form. It also helps you get all that rich nutrients and the benefits they offer.
Juicing is a fantastic option for anyone needing to consume less fiber but still want an effective way to absorb those nutrients.
And, from a more eco-friendly standpoint, it is a fantastic way to use fruit that is on the softer side of the scale or that has bruises. This way you don’t have to toss anything or let it go bad.
Unfortunately, there are also a few downsides to juicing. Depending on the recipes you use, usually fruit juice has quite a high-calorie count, especially those made from extremely sugar-dense fruits.
However, you can research healthier alternatives if you are trying to cut back on the calories.
Juicing also needs quite a large amount of produce. You need a lot to produce very little liquid, especially because the fiber is discarded. Fiber makes up a ton of volume when it comes to fruits. This could be potentially wasteful.
And finally, despite juice still having a ton of nutrients, you do end up losing essential fibers and some nutrients, especially when using a centrifugal juicer.
What Is A Blender?
Blenders are just as popular as juicers and have their own unique set of functions.
However, as we have mentioned, many people confuse the two and exactly how they are used. You may be more familiar with the design of a blender compared to a juicer.
The first thing you may notice is that a blender doesn’t have a straining mechanism.
A blender is usually a large jug or jar that is attached to some blades. A lid is then placed on top and the produce is chopped vigorously with sharp blades.
Even though the fresh produce is basically pulverized, the fiber is never separated from the liquid. There are a few different, more modern designs, however, they all work in the same way – no separation of fiber and juice.
Blenders are more often used to help mix ingredients, crush them, puree them, or emulsify food. This means they can crush ice, blend proteins to make minced meats, or even adjust the consistency of sauces or marinades.
They are also essential for making mayonnaise or other emulsion sauces like vinaigrettes. You can also use it to aid in yogurt making, or in smooth out ingredients.
The jug is usually made from glass but can also be made from a hard food-grade plastic.
Plastic jugs however may absorb odors and even stain, so we would highly recommend glass blenders. They won’t absorb flavors or color, but they can break, so take care when using them.
Blenders are mainly used for smoothies, especially by people who lead a busy lifestyle and choose smoothies as meal replacements.
Types Of Blenders
There are two main types of blenders: countertop blenders and immersion blenders. As with the juicers, depending on what you want to use them for and how often, this will affect your buying choice.
These blenders consist mainly of two parts: an electronic base and a jug that is attached to it. The jug itself usually contains sharp blades and often has a 1-2 liter volume capacity.
Countertop blenders almost always have speed settings so you can adjust exactly how much and quick you want your product to blend at. This will directly affect the consistency.
These blenders, in our opinion, are much more effective compared to immersion blenders as they blend more evenly.
Immersion blenders, also known as hand blenders or stick blenders, don’t have an attached container.
It still comes with a container, but what makes these stick blenders so great is that you can use them anywhere and it takes up much less space.
These blenders unfortunately can only blend a small number of products at a time and you will have to blend for a while to ensure all the ingredients have been evenly blended.
Pros And Cons Of Blending
The biggest benefit to blending fresh produce (to make juice specifically) is that you don’t lose any nutrients or part of the ingredient.
All parts of the edible raw ingredient are included which means once pulverized, you absorb those nutrients too.
Blending these ingredients into a liquid form helps your body quickly convert the nutritional value of the ingredients.
This basically means that it doesn’t allow your body to convert the food into fat which is why so many people use this appliance as a weight-loss tool.
Because of all the fiber inside the juice, it definitely helps keep you fuller for longer compared to filtered (juicer-produced) juice.
And finally, this appliance has a lot more uses compared to a juicer that is only meant to liquefy ingredients.
Unfortunately, as always, some cons. Sometimes you need added liquid to help the blending process which may add extra calories.
You are also left with a considerable amount of fiber, which isn’t necessarily bad, but not fantastic if you are trying to reduce your fiber intake.
What Are The Differences?
So, now that we know what a juicer and a blender are, let’s take a look at what makes these two appliances so different from one another.
The biggest difference is that a juicer separates the fibrous pulp and the liquid, where a blender blends the entire ingredient together to a smooth consistency.
Juicing ultimately loses more nutrients and fibers compared to blending ingredients.
Juicers can process any fruit or vegetable as is, whereas blenders often require additional liquids to help blend the ingredients to a smooth consistency.
In terms of physical design, neither is an extremely space-saving option, however, we would have to say a blender is arguably better. Simply because it can perform more functions than a juicer can.
However, if you want a fiber—removing an appliance, juicers do come in varying sizes but are pretty big. Blenders are generally on the smaller side and take up more height than surface area.
Alternatively, you can simply strain the blended ingredients to remove excessive fiber instead of buying a whole new appliance that will cost a lot of money and take up space.
Which Makes Healthier Drinks?
When it comes to deciding whether a blender or juicer makes healthier juice, there are a ton of factors to consider and in our opinion, it is a relevant question.
It all depends on why you want the one or the other and what your dietary requirement is.
For example, if you are looking to reduce your fiber intake, then a juicer will definitely be the better and “healthier” choice. But if you are looking to obtain more nutrients, then your blender will be better.
Blenders are fantastic in keeping a ton of nutrients in the juice, but also contain a ton of fiber. Juicers help removes fibers from the liquid, but also have fewer nutrients because of this.
Juicing ingredients do have more concentrated nutrients though that will be absorbed much quicker compared to blended juices.
In terms of calories, that s also impossible to say because the calorie count depends entirely on the type of ingredients you use.
Fiber is an important aspect of our daily dietary intake. We aren’t necessarily advocating blending, but it is important to understand the importance of consuming fiber (if you don’t have any dietary needs).
Fiber can help normalize bowel movements, maintain bowel health, lower cholesterol, and help to control blood sugar levels.
These benefits are often lost when juicing fruit due to the fiber being present in the pulp and skin that is separated from the juice.
Drinking a blended smoothie can incorporate these fibers rather than lose them. Fiber also helps you stay fuller for longer which is why smoothies are such a fantastic weight-loss product.
The nutrients in smoothies are digested by the body at a slower pace which helps create a steadier stream of energy.
Which Is Easier To Use?
When it comes down to which is easier to use, the choice is far easier than deciding if blending or juicing has more nutritional value!
Since the blender usually consists of much fewer components than a juicer, we have to say it’s far more convenient to use, not necessarily easier.
A juicer is fairly straightforward to use, but it has a lot of attachments that need to be assembled together, where a blender simply just attaches a jug to a base.
And with so many parts also comes more cleaning. A juicer has a lot of small parts that need to be cleaned very well to prevent bacterial growth. The pulp that is separated from the juice also needs to be discarded and the filter brushed.
Blenders have a convenient jug with a lid that can be removed to transport the juice or to pour it out. If juicers are not handled properly the juice can overflow or spill, leaving behind a sticky mess.
A juicer has fewer settings than a blender and usually only has a pulse button or a continuous action button. A blender has the same buttons but has additional speed controls.
Often the ingredients you want to juice have to be chopped smaller to be able to fit through the juicer’s narrow opening, whereas with a blender whole ingredients can simply be added without being chopped.
This saves a lot of time and again, dishes! Easier to clean, less preparation work, easy operation! The blender wins this round.
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