How to Choose a Portable Blender: What to Know Before You Buy
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If you can't live without your morning smoothie, a portable blender may be your new best friend!
A full-size blender is a must-have appliance for every kitchen, but what about those times you want to whip up a smoothie or blend a protein shake on the go? You’re surely not going to put your Vitamix in your purse (unless you’re Mary Poppins), but you can take along a portable blender.
These adorably small blenders are designed to be carried in your bag or packed in a suitcase, and many of them have convenient battery-powered designs that can be used anywhere—no electrical outlet needed. Sound appealing? Here’s what you need to know to find the best portable blender for your needs.
What to Look for When Shopping for a Portable Blender
There’s no shortage of portable blenders available today, and you’ll want to consider a few key factors to figure out which one is right for you. (Hint: It’s a lot of the same things you’d consider when buying a full-size blender!)
- Size: One of the main differences between traditional blenders and portable blenders is their size. Portable blenders are usually quite compact, but you’ll want to make sure they’re big enough to hold your ingredients and preferred drink size. Of course, they shouldn’t be too big, either—otherwise it will be bulky to carry in your bag.
- Battery life: Most portable blenders are charged via USB cords, and you’ll want to look at how much use you’ll get per charge. Many units can be used 10 or more times per charge, saving you the hassle of constantly plugging it in to juice back up.
- Power: You can gauge a blender’s power by looking at its wattage and RPMs, or revolutions per minute. The higher these numbers are, the more powerful the unit will be. If you’re hoping to blend hard ingredients like ice, you’re definitely going to need a powerful portable blender.
The Best Portable Blenders
If you’re on the hunt for an amazing portable blender, take a look at these three products that stand out from the crowd.
Best for Icy Drinks: BlendJet 2
One of the common pitfalls of portable blenders is that they can’t always handle ice, but the BlendJet 2 is powerful enough to blend up frozen ingredients to make your favorite icy drinks. While it’s more expensive than other models, this blender is packed with useful features—it can hold up to 16 ounces, has built-in measuring marks on the side and is even water-resistant. It has a locking mechanism that prevents the blender from accidentally being turned on in your bag, and the cute design comes in 16 bright colors.
According to reviewers, the BlendJet 2 can easily crush ice, fruit and more, and many note it’s surprisingly quiet for a blender, allowing you to whip up a smoothie without disturbing those around you. The blender charges up via a USB cable, and it can be used 15 or more times per charge, making it ideal to bring along while traveling or even camping.
- Capacity: 16 oz.
- Weight: 1.34 lbs.
- Price: $99.95
Best Battery Life: NutriBullet Go
If you don’t want to be stuck recharging your blender after every few drinks, the NutriBullet Go offers an impressive battery life—it can be used for up to 20 blending cycles before needing to be recharged via the included USB cable. This cordless blender has a 13-ounce cup that’s made from a durable plastic that won’t crack or break if it’s bumped around, and it comes in four different colors. It even includes a convenient to-go lid that lets you carry your drink around right inside the blending cup.
Reviewers love that the NutriBullet Go blends up smoothies and protein shakes quickly and easily, and many say it’s ideal for traveling, using at the office, or bringing to the gym. Plus, the unit is designed with safety in mind—it includes a cover for the blade when the cup isn’t attached, and it won’t turn on if the blender isn’t properly assembled.
- Capacity: 13 oz.
- Weight: 1.54 lbs.
- Price: $29.99
Best Cup-Style: GREECHO Portable Blender
Most portable blenders look similar to their full-size counterparts with a large base and blending cup on top. However, the GREECHO Portable Blender has a unique cup-style design—it looks like your average to-go bottle, and its blade is actually on the underside of the lid. This allows you to drink straight from the cup itself, saving you the hassle of bringing along a secondary container to transfer your smoothie into. Cool, right?
This portable blender has a 12-ounce capacity and charges via a USB cable. It’s leakproof and lightweight, so you can stash it in your purse without worry. Simply fill the cup with your favorite ingredients before you leave the house, and when it’s time to drink, double-press the button to start blending. The product is available in blue and white finishes to suit your style.
- Capacity: 12 oz.
- Weight: .97 lbs.
- Price: $59.99
How to Use Your Portable Blender
Once you have your very own portable blender, there are so many ways you can use it! Smoothies are obviously one of most popular choices, and there are dozens of healthy smoothie recipes that cater to just about every taste. Just keep in mind you may have to tweak the recipes a bit if your mini blender can’t handle ice cubes.
However, that’s not all your blender can do. You can use it to make homemade salad dressing for your workplace lunches or frozen drinks for a summertime picnic. Other things to try include milkshakes, smoothie bowls and other blender recipes.