Best blender 2021: our top picks for perfect soups

Pick up the best blender with our guide to the top picks from Ninja, NutriBullet, KitchenAid, and Smeg

best blender kitchenaid
(Image credit: KitchenAid)

Looking for the best blender? From NutriBullet to Vitamix, there are so many options out there that it can be hard to know what to choose. That's where our blender reviews come in, because many of the best blenders in our guide have been tried and tested by the Real Homes team. 

While not all blenders are heatproof, many can be used to make delicious soups for seasonal lunches, and even to blend up protein shakes for a post-gym drink. 

While some of our top picks are perfect for personal-sized portions, others are designed to make multi-serve portions for families and batch cooking. You can even add pancake and dip ingredients and pulse to make a thick and creamy consistency, with no mess and no need for a stand mixer

If you're looking for more kitchen appliance recommendations, head over to our best air fryers page. Otherwise, keep reading for our best blender recommendations. 

K400 Variable Speed BlenderReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: KitchenAid )

1. KitchenAid K400 Artisan blender

The best blender we've tried hands-on

Specifications
Dimensions: W 7.59 x L 9.02 x H 15.8 inches
Material: Plastic
Capacity: 56 ounces
Wattage: 1200 watts
Reasons to buy
+Automatic settings+Ice crush function+Self-cleaning design+Super powerful
Reasons to avoid
-Emptying can be tricky, because blades cannot be removed 

We tested the KitchenAid K400 Artisan Blender hands on, and found that it could handle anything we threw at it. It's also available in a range of amazing colors, and has a selection of smart settings. 

What we love

The KitchenAid K400 Artisan Blender has three specific recipe programs: Ice Crush, Icy Drinks, and Smoothie. The dial also allows you to pulse, and go from one through five in strength. 

Automatic timing means the whole process can be hands-free. While it only comes with one pitcher, you can buy single-serve and small batch attachments for increasing the range of uses.

Things to know

While the self-clean setting did help, we found it hard to get into every little spot because the blade cannot be removed from the pitcher. 

Ninja Smoothie Bowl MakerReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Ninja)

2. Ninja Foodi Smoothie Bowl Maker and Nutrient Extractor

Best blender for smoothies

Specifications
Dimensions: 15.25 x 14.5 x 6.5 inches
Material: Plastic
Capacity: 14 oz, 24 oz
Wattage: 1200 watts
Reasons to buy
+Empty List
Reasons to avoid
-Empty List

If you love a homemade smoothie or a fresh açaí bowl, the Ninja Foodi Smoothie Bowl Maker and Nutrient Extractor is a top pick. It doesn't have a large pitcher, so it is better for personal use, but its strong blades are more than capable of crushing ice and frozen fruit.

What we love

The Ninja Foodi Smoothie Bowl Maker and Nutrient Extractor has well-timed preset modes to extract nutrients, make a smoothie, a smoothie bowl, or a spread. 

We found that the bowl attachment requires barely any liquid to make smoothie bowls and spreads. We were able to twist the top to mix up the contents of the bowl and make sure that the blend was even and that no ingredients were left out. 

Things to know

Pre-frozen açaí packets need to be thawed and broken up to fit below the max fill line. While the capacity is adequate, it won't fit large items like frozen bananas without breaking them up first. 

SmegReal Homes Rated Silver Badge

(Image credit: Smeg)

3. Smeg Blender

Best blender for families

Specifications
Dimensions: 13.65 x 7.75 x 6.4inches
Material: Tritan, aluminium
Capacity: 53oz
Wattage: 800 watts
Reasons to buy
+Lovely to look at+Slick design+Easy to clean+Ice crushing mode is very powerful
Reasons to avoid
-Can't blend hot ingredients

It may only have one large tritan jug and no personal attachments, but the Smeg Blender is a great blender for families. The jug is sturdy and easy to clean, and you can twist the blades away from the base of the pitcher.

What we love

You simply lift the pitcher away from the base, no need to twist it into place or unscrew it. It has a classic retro look, but the Smeg Blender comes with a selection of smart modes. There is an ice crush setting that really does power through even large ice cubes. 

As for the design? Well, you don't need us to tell you that the Smeg Blender couldn't be more easy on the eyes. It comes in a range of colors, too. 

Things to know

While it certainly feels like the tritan jug can handle hot liquids, Smeg advises against it. That's a shame, because we had to let our soup ingredients cool before blending them.  

  • Real Homes rating: 4 out of 5 stars

NutribulletReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Nutribullet)

4. NutriBullet Pro 900 Series Blender

The best blender for single-serve smoothies

Specifications
Dimensions: 12.01 x 7.72 x 15.94 inches
Material: Plastic
Capacity: 32 ounces
Wattage: 900 watts
Reasons to buy
+Easy to use+Made amazingly smooth drinks+Can tackle tricky ingredients+Dishwasher-safe cups 
Reasons to avoid
-Only one blending mode-Not suitable for families

The NutriBullet Pro 900 is NutriBullet's most powerful bullet blender, and it really did the trick when we used it to make smoothies. From frozen fruit to tough kale stems, the NutriBullet Pro 900 is up to the task of making even the trickiest smoothies. 

What we love

The design is simple and easy to use, simply press the blending cup down onto the base after screwing on the blending lid, and twist. You can leave it to blend until you're happy with the consistency, and then simply twist back to neutral and pour.

Even seeds from berries and tough pineapple core was traceless after a minute in the NutriBullet Pro 900. Our finishing smoothie was very creamy with no fiber residue. 

Things to know

The blending cup can go in the dishwasher, but the blade cannot. 

  • Real Homes rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Breville blender

(Image credit: Breville)

5. Breville The Super Q

Best powerful blender

Specifications
Dimensions: 18 x 12.75 x 11 inches
Material: Brushed stainless steel
Capacity: 68 oz
Wattage: 1800 watts
Reasons to buy
+Very powerful motor+Soup and smoothie modes+Carry cup and large pitcher+Not too loud
Reasons to avoid
-It's very expensive

Breville's The Super Q is a top-rated blender. It has five modes to mix, blend, chop, puree, and mill. There are also modes to crush ice and make soups and green smoothies.

What we love

Noise suppression really make this powerful blender a joy to use. It's commercial-grade, and includes a tamper and spatula to make blending easy. 

There are dishwasher-safe attachments too, meaning you can clean up easily when you're done. 

Things to know

At 7.9lbs, it's a heavy option for any kitchen. While performance is quality, you do pay a premium for it. 

Vitamix blender

(Image credit: Vitamix)

6. Vitamix A3500 Ascent Series Blender

Best professional blender

Specifications
Dimensions: 11 x 8 x 17 inches
Material: Tritan
Capacity: 64 oz
Wattage: 1800 watts
Reasons to buy
+Self-clean+Tamper included +Smart timer and settings+Speed control
Reasons to avoid
-Noisy

Famed for its professional use, the Vitamix A3500 Ascent Series Blender has five programs for smoothies, dips, and frozen desserts. It can even self-clean, and the attachments are dishwasher-safe.

What we love

Programs allow you to adjust timings and the display shows a clear countdown for hands-free control. You can also use the pulse and variable speed settings.

With the blender you'll get a variety of containers that connect to the base wirelessly, signalling to adjust blending times automatically. This is great for grinding, making personal smoothies, and blitzing family-sized soups. 

Things to know

With professional-level blending comes the noise of an industrial blender. While it's immensely powerful, it's also a loud option. 

kitchenaidReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: kitchenaid)

7. KitchenAid K150 3 Speed Ice Crushing Blender

The best affordable blender for classic style

Specifications
Dimensions: 8.5 x 7.1 x 14.8 inches
Material: Plastic
Capacity: 48 oz
Wattage: 165 volts
Reasons to buy
+Sleek design+Reasonably priced+Three speeds and a pulse setting+Easy cleaning
Reasons to avoid
-Low power

When we tried out the KitchenAid K150 Blender it impressed us with its value-for-money and ease of use. It has three speeds as well as an ice crush/pulse setting. 

What we love

We were able to make smoothie bowls, soups, and sauces with ease using the KitchenAid K150 Blender. It did take a little longer to work through the ingredients, but for the price, it had an impressive performance. 

Things to know

The motor is on the weaker side, and if you want extra attachments, it will cost extra. 

How to find the best blender

Vitamix blender

(Image credit: Vitamix)

1. Power

Not everyone needs the most powerful blender, but if you want something that can crush ice and blitz out leafy greens, the higher the wattage, the better. 

We listed the power for all of our best blender picks, so if it's a case of the more powerful, the better, just take a look at our top 5 entries.

2. Size

When you buy a big blender, make sure you have the space to store it when not in use. Many like to leave their blender on the kitchen counter between uses, but if you want to store your blender in a cupboard or on a shelf, it's worth checking that the blender is light enough to be lifted easily, and that it isn't too tall for your intended space.

3. Attachments

Blender food processor combos are perfect for cutting down your appliances and having two in one space. 

If you do already have a food processor, buying a blender food processor could be an unnecessary expense. 

Millie Fender
Millie Fender

Millie joined the Real Homes team in 2021 after working at TopTenReviews as a Staff Writer. She is constantly on the hunt for the latest (and best) kitchen appliances, and reviewing these products hands-on. As a baking enthusiast, Millie’s job at Real Homes is the perfect excuse to cook up an endless supply of snacks. When she’s not in the kitchen though, she loves knitting and exploring London's top food markets. 

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