Consumer Reports in July focused on the category of blender that essentially includes four types...

A kitchen countertop may look impressive with a full-bells-and-whistles blender, but is that what is needed?

Consumer Reports in July focused on the category that essentially includes four types: high-performance (also considered high-speed), conventional (the basic blenders that first entered the marketplace), personal and handheld immersion. Most high-performance models can blend everything from silky smoothies and soups to ice cream. The conventional style is best for lower-intensity blending tasks, such as milkshakes and smoothies. The personal blender is designed for the on-the-go basic shake or yogurt-based smoothie: blend, and then detach the cup and take with. And the handheld immersion type blends sauces and soups well and can tackle some smoothie recipes.

Before going for top-of-the-line, asks, “Do You Need a High Speed Blender?” Consider:

— Are seeds, vegetables, nuts — coarse foods — typically used to make smoothies?
— Are smoothies made often, such as several times weekly?
— Has a conventional blender not been able to handle desired tasks?
— Is it important to make the occasional frozen cocktail or super-velvety soups and sauces?
— Interested in grinding some grains into flours or nuts into butter?

Another important consideration is available counter space or cabinet storage. Is it important to have a blender that is easily accessible?

Daily smoothies and little else can be handled by a personal blender, while regular soup and sauce eaters may just need an immersion blender.

Consumer Reports conveys an expected breakdown of costs depending on blender type sought:
— High-performance: $300 to $700
— Conventional: $40 to $150
— Personal: $20 to $100
— Immersion: $30 to $240

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