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Good news, smoothie fiends: You can upgrade to a top-of-the-line blender without paying a small fortune. My favorite smoothie maker — the Breville Fresh & Furious Blender — doesn’t come cheap, but it’s still less than half the price of a Vitamix or Blendtec.
The first thing you’ll notice is that it’s nice and sleek. That’s because it’s well designed with a silvery finish and a smooth control pad that lights up when you use it. It also is available in other base colors, like Sea Salt and Royal Champagne.
2. It has the most perfect smoothie settings.
In addition to five speeds, it features settings for crushing ice and making smoothies. When you use these preprogrammed smoothie settings, they automatically pulse and add bursts of power, pulling down the ingredients so you don’t have to stop and stir or use a pusher. Smoothies come out completely blended with a velvety texture.
3. The jar is incredibly easy to fill up and pour from.
Red measurement markings on the clear, BPA-free plastic jar really pop so they’re easy to read. That means you can just put ingredients right into the pitcher without having to dirty a measuring cup. When your smoothie is all blended, you won’t have trouble pulling off the lid because it has a handy loop to help you separate the pieces.
4. The timer won’t leave you guessing.
The base features a lighted timer. When you’re using one of the settings, it counts down so you know how much time is left; when you’re not, it counts up so you know just how long you’ve been blending. Handy if, say, the hummus recipe says to purée for 60 seconds. Because, you know, I’m guessing you want a blender that can do more than just smoothies.
5. It practically cleans itself.
For starters, there’s an auto clean cycle that works to scrub off any anything that sticks to the sides of the jar. Of course, you’ll still want to wash it thoroughly. Because the blade isn’t removable, you don’t have to unscrew the base and take out the gasket and mess with the sharp stuff. You can just chuck the whole jar in the dishwasher. After it’s clean, there’s no reassembly process either.
Do you have a favorite blender? Tell us about it in the comments!