Is juicing the same as using a blender?

You can use a juicer or a blender to make fruit drinks, but the two appliances are not the same. Juicers are ideal for making liquid fruit juices and can also make vegetable juices. Blenders are ideal for making smoothies.

A juicer removes the fibre from fruit and vegetables to make a smooth drink, but a blender combines both to make fruit drinks with a thicker texture. Depending on the ingredients you want to use, it might be better to use a blender or a juicer or both together.

Using a Juicer

Juicers can take fibrous foods like apples, or pulpy foods like carrots, and extract the liquid alone. Because the appliance does the work of extracting all the juice from the fruit, even from the fibres, your body doesn't have to. You can make drinks in a juicer with the same fruits you'd put in a blender, but with less prep work. The juicer does the work of removing seeds, skin and other fibre. The result is a clearer drink without the chewy texture of fruit drinks made in a blender.

Using a Blender

Because blenders use quickly rotating blades to cut and break down the ingredients you insert, everything you put into a blender gets ground up together. You may have to peel, core and seed your fruit and/or remove pith before blending. Raspberries and other berries with tiny seeds can be put in the blender whole and add a nice texture to your drink. Traditional blenders are better for drinks made with bananas (or avocados) that are low in water content and easy to peel and seed.

Using a Juicer and Blender Together

You can use the juice from a juicer and put it in your blender with other ingredients to make a blended drink out of almost anything! If you want to add fibre to the liquid from your juicer, you can put nutritious nut or grain products like wheat germ, almond meal or ground flaxseed into the blender along with the juice. Ice, yoghurt and cow or soy milk make delicious additions to juiced liquids put in the blender just as they do in traditional blender-made smoothies.

Super Blenders

Blenders between 300 and 600 watts can blend, pur´┐Że and emulsify. Bar blenders are specially built with high-speed blades that can crush ice without liquid. Immersion blenders are hand-held units that come in different strengths for commercial and personal use. You can also find "super blenders" that are programmable, large capacity and able to perform multiple tasks. There are even models with variable-speed, two horsepower and three horsepower motors that are strong enough to grind grain and knead dough.

Super Juicers

Most juicers use centrifugal action but some "super juicers" use a masticating process, "twin gear" action or a hydraulic press for powerful extraction. Manufacturers of these juicers claim that their mechanisms retain maximum nutrition, vitamins and minerals from fruits and vegetables. There are even specialised, no-clog wheat grass juicers that extract the juice at low speed to preserve its enzymes.