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Immersion blenders quickly mix ingredients for blended soups, sauces, smoothies, and so much more. While immersion blenders aren't as powerful as countertop blenders, they are more powerful than many cooks give them credit for. And chances are you can use them in ways you haven't dreamed of.
At their most simple, these stick blenders crush and mix ingredients directly in the pot or bowl, making smooth sauces and pureed soups a breeze. Fancier versions come with attachments, like a whisk or food processor, that turn your hand blender into a multipurpose kitchen accessory.
If you’re on the fence about purchasing an immersion blender, Jamie Hunt, a celebrity chef in New York City, recommends one because it "is a convenient way to make smoothies in the morning, which means fewer dishes for busy people on the go. When looking for an immersion blender, the most important criteria to account for include: the placement of the cord, overall power, and ease of cleaning."
Here are the best immersion blenders to tuck in your kitchen drawer.
Best Overall: Breville Control Grip Immersion Blender
The Breville Control Grip Immersion Blender performs well and includes popular features found in other immersion blenders, but this works somewhat differently. Because it doesn’t suck food up toward the blades, you’ll need to move the unit up and down as you blend, almost like you’re mashing potatoes. However, the quality performance, included attachments, and strong design make this a top pick for most cooks.
While it’s low in power at 280 watts, this immersion blender still gets the job done and features a variable speed mechanism for flexibility. It comes with attachments, including a 3-cup chopping bowl, a lidded storage jug, and a whisk. The bell-shaped blender base increases efficiency while reducing suction and spatters, for easy cleanup. Since the base is non-scratch, this blender won’t damage cookware.
Best Budget: Braun MQ505 MultiQuick 5 Immersion Blender
With 350 watts of power and two speeds, the Braun MultiQuick 5 Immersion Hand Blender makes quick work out of most tasks, such as pureeing soup or making smoothies.
This 2.2 x 2.2 x 15-inch immersion blender has a comfortable handle and comes with a 20-ounce blending jar. Budget immersion blenders tend to spatter and this one doesn’t, thanks to its bell-shaped blending shaft. Attachments, like a chopper, are sold separately, so you can keep the cost down and expand later if desired.
Best Cordless: All-Clad KZ800D51 Cordless Rechargeable Stainless Steel Hand Blender
The All-Clad Cordless Rechargeable Immersion Blender is on the high end of hand blenders, but it’s the top pick when you want an immersion blender you can use anywhere, regardless of whether there’s an outlet nearby.
Hunt recommends this immersion blender by All-Clad. In fact, it is one of her favorite kitchen tools. "When using an immersion blender, you'll notice that the cord often gets in the way," she says. "This one is thoughtfully designed, allowing you to freely move around your kitchen without struggling with a tangled cord. It's also very powerful, and the controls are right at your fingertips for easy maneuvering between speeds."
The 600-watt tool offers five adjustable blending speeds suitable for a range of kitchen tasks. A gentle start mode reduces spatters for easy cleanup. The immersion blender comes with a charging base, which is designed to sit on the counter and recharge the battery as needed. Note, it isn’t recommended for cast iron or nonstick cookware.
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Best for Soup: Vitamix Handheld Immersion Blender
Vitamix blenders are known for their powerful blending capacity, so it only makes sense that the brand’s immersion blender would crush the competition when it comes to pureeing soup.
Vitamix made this with a 625-watt motor and five variable speeds, so you can puree gently or use a stronger speed as needed. The blade has a bell shape to promote flow and prevent suction, which is when the hand blender sticks to the bottom of the pot. Since the blade guard is scratch-resistant, you can use this immersion blender with any cookware. The 5-foot long cord means this tool can comfortably stretch from a wall outlet to the stove.
Related: The Best Vitamix Blenders
Best for Smoothies: Kitchen Aid 2-Speed Hand Blender
The KitchenAid 2-Speed Hand Blender comes with a 3-cup lidded blending jar that’s ideal for smoothies.
Just like KitchenAid’s stand mixers, this 2.5 x 2.5 x 16-inch appliance comes in a range of colors. The handle is coated with a soft grip that’s comfortable to use, and the power button is larger than on other models for smooth operation. While there are only two speeds, this 220-watt product has more than enough oomph to crush frozen fruit, ice, and juice into a creamy smoothie. The blender arm detaches from the unit for easy cleanup in the dishwasher.
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Best with Attachments: Braun MQ7035 MultiQuick 3-in-1 Immersion Hand Blender
For all-in-one convenience, you can’t beat the Braun MultiQuick 3-in-1 Immersion Hand Blender, which comes with a food processor, whisk attachment, and a mixing jar.
This immersion blender features a bell-shaped blade, designed to reduce suction and ensure a consistent flow of ingredients, which results in a smoother puree. It uses variable speed, so the harder you press the button, the faster the blade whirrs. The blade also adjusts in height to the food you’re blending, which reduces spatters. These thoughtful touches plus the range of attachments make the Braun immersion blender a useful multipurpose kitchen tool.
Best for Emulsions: All-Clad KZ750D Stainless Steel Immersion Blender
All-Clad's other Stainless Steel Immersion Blender excels at emulsions, such as homemade mayonnaise, sauce, and salad dressing.
The 600-watt motor is robust enough to make quick work out of pureeing sauces and salad dressings, while the variable speed mechanism allows you to use a light touch when that’s needed, such as when you want soft whipped cream and not butter. Since the immersion blender shaft measures 9.25 inches, it can reach deep into a soup pot with ease. Like All-Clad’s cordless immersion blender, this isn’t intended for use in cast iron or nonstick pots. Optional accessories, like a whisk and chopper, are sold separately.
Related: The Best Cooking Utensils
The best overall is the Breville Control Grip Immersion Blender (view at Amazon), which includes attachments and many favorite features found in immersion blenders. If you need to save money without sacrificing performance, choose the Braun MultiQuick 5 Immersion Hand Blender (view at Amazon).
What to Look for in an Immersion Blender
Immersion blenders are small but mighty. You might not expect an immersion blender to have up to 600 watts of power. Some models with 220 to 280 watts of power are appropriate for when you need a light touch, but the more powerful 600-watt models are robust enough for a variety of tough blends.
Like countertop blenders, immersion blenders have several adjustable blending speeds to choose from, depending on the use. Between 2 to 5 speed options are standard for immersion blenders. Some have variable speeds, so the blades whirr faster the harder you press down. For maximum versatility, opt for an immersion blender with up to 15 speeds.
Length of Wand
Regular blenders have containers to hold ingredients while they blend. Immersion blenders instead are lowered directly into jars, jugs, bowls, pots, or other containers. The length of the wand determines how deep of a container you can use to store your ingredients and blended food. The detachable shaft may have an immersion depth of up to 8 inches to blend large quantities at a time or submerge into deep pots.
The base of an immersion blender is usually bell-shaped. The shape around the blade helps prevent the suctioning of ingredients and scratching on the bottom of your pots. The construction of the blades will determine the capabilities of the immersion blender. Stainless steel blades that can crush through ice and nuts are the most durable.
Are immersion blenders good for smoothies?
Immersion blenders are great for smoothies. You can add your ingredients to a jar or jug and lower the shaft into it to blend. Some immersion blenders include a container that can be used to make smoothies. Instead of having to wash the blender container and your glass, you’ll only have one dish to wash.
How long do you blend with an immersion blender?
The blending time depends on what you’re making. Blend in intervals of 30-50 seconds and repeat as needed to reach the desired consistency.
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Lindsey Danis is a former professional cook and a food writer for retail and trade publications.
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