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Juicer vs blender: which should you buy?

What's the difference between a juicer and a blender, and which suits your needs better? Our reviews editor explains all

Nutribullet juicer
(Image credit: NutriBullet)

Which should you buy: a juicer or a blender, and what are the differences? The short answer is that it depends on your preferences and a few key factors. While both juicers and blenders are perfectly designed to inject some more healthy fruit and veg into your diet, there are some key differences to consider when choosing what’s right for your needs and preferences. 

Having tested both the best juicers and the best blenders, we think both appliances play an indispensable part in any kitchen. And while blenders do so much more than make smoothies, there's no denying that homemade juice from a juicer also tastes more like you might expect from your favorite freshly-pressed store-bought juice. 

However, there is more to both appliances, and if you only have space for one, it's important to know all the distinctions and which one works best for which funciton. Here is how to choose between a blender and juicer for your next purchase. 

Juicer vs blender: what is the difference? 

juicer vs blender

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Blenders pulverize fruit, vegetables and just about anything else you put in them to make smoothies and sauces. They create thick and creamy drinks with no waste, 

Juicers work to remove the juice from celery, apples, ginger and other healthy foods to turn them into delicious drinks, leaving behind the flesh and pulp which can either be used elsewhere in your kitchen or thrown away. 

While blenders all more or less do the same thing, different types of juicers operate in different ways. The best cold press juicers claim to extract more nutrients and keep fiber intact, with a greater health payoff and less food waste than their centrifugal counterparts.

Juicer vs blender: which is healthier? 

best portable travel blenders

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Marginally, blenders are better than juicers for your health. Because you’re ingesting far more of the fruit or vegetable, there are a lot of advantages to blending your drinks. Blenders retain all of the fiber, whereas much of this will be lost to a centrifugal or even a slow juicer. Fiber is important to your gut health and digestion, so you could be missing out on a big part of what makes apples and carrots healthy if you pass them through a juicer. 

That said, most of the good stuff can be found in the juice. This includes a higher concentration of vitamins, and it’s easier to ingest a higher concentration of this when it’s in a call glass of juice, compared to having to eat the equivalent of three stems of celery or numerous apples. 

Which is best for weight loss?

Arguably a juicer is better for weight loss. The enemy of most diets is sugar. While good in moderation, having too many fruits in your diet can drive up blood sugar levels and result in you drinking your calories. You’ll find most of the sweetness in a fruit comes from the juice, so when blended it’s easier to cut back on the volume you’re ingesting because it’s bulked out by pulp and other matter.

What is cheaper, a juicer or a blender? 

juicer vs blender

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Blenders are cheaper than juicers, because, while it is possible to find reasonably priced juicers, it’s hard to find them at the same low prices you can pick up a blender for. This is because they not only blitz up fruits and vegetables, they also remove the pulp, which makes them more advanced machines. If you’re on a budget and want fresh and healthy drinks, opt for a blender. You’ll find that the best portable blenders are often the least expensive. 

Which is easier to use, a juicer or blender?

Again, blenders win out here. To use a blender you simply add your ingredients and start. Juicers require monitoring, and you will have to add one piece of fruit or vegetable at a time.

Which is easier to clean, a juicer or blender?

Cleaning a blender is usually easiest. Many blenders can simply be placed straight into the dishwasher, but it’s hard to find a juicer that doesn’t require at least some hand washing. This is because they come with strainers and other more sensitive attachments that require proper scrubbing to remove built up pulp and particles. 

Which makes the better drinks?

juicer vs blender

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While it's down to personal preference, we think that juicers deliver a better drinking experience than blenders with most drinks. Take celery juice, for example. While it’s never tasty, it’s a lot easier to drink a glass of juiced celery than blended celery, with all its pulp and fiber. This is also true of most fruits, although you can’t juice select fruits such as bananas.

Juicers vs blenders for juicing

Juicers win out when it comes to juicing since they remove all the pulp, leaving you with just the juice. 

Juicers vs blenders for celery juice

Juicers win out when it comes to extracting juice from celery. In fact, celery juice offers greater health benefits than celery eaten raw. That said, there is still lots of benefit to be had from drinking blended celery.

Juicers vs blenders for smoothies

Blenders are best for making smoothies; where a juicer will remove the majority of the pulpy fiber, with blenders you are drinking the entire fruit or vegetable.