Blenders are very useful kitchen gadgets. They can be used to prepare purees, soups, smoothies, baby meals, sauces, desserts and just about anything else you can imagine. When you compare blenders before you get your own, you may be wondering whether you should get the countertop blender or the immersion (also known as handheld or stick) model.
Both types of blenders have their pros and cons. Your choice should really depend on your answers to the following two questions:
1. What will you be using most of your blender for?
2. Under what type of conditions will you be using your blender?
The following will detail the points to consider when you compare blenders before you get the correct type of blender for your needs.
Comparing the Pros and Cons of Countertop and Immersion Blenders
Advantages of Handheld (Immersion) Blenders Over Countertop Blenders
- With a handheld blender (also known as immersion blenders) you are not limited by the size of the blending bowl you are using (as opposed to a countertop blender which requires the use of the bowl that comes with it). Because the blending can be executed directly in the cooking pot, you are allowed to work with larger amounts of liquids and soft ingredients. You are really only limited by the size of the cooking pots you own. In addition, because you are directly blending in the cooking pot, you are allowed to work with hot liquids and ingredients. This is quite useful and time-saving when you make soups.
- The handheld blenders do not really need any counter space for storage as they can easily be hidden away in a kitchen cabinet or drawer. So they are quite suitable for small kitchens with little counter space.
- Handheld blenders come nowadays in cordless versions which are very suitable for travelling and camping. Because they are so small they can easily be carried to your camping or vacation site in a bag and run on battery.
- Cleanup is much easier with handheld blenders as there is no additional bowl and lid to clean.
Advantages of Countertop Blenders Over Handheld (Immersion) Blenders
- Handheld blenders are very good for blending liquid and soft ingredients. But they are not adapted to blending efficiently harder, larger and thicker ingredients even when the additional attachments that come with some brands are used. If harder, larger and thicker foods are to be blended, a countertop blender which is better equipped to achieve thorough grinding or pureeing should be used.
- Even though handheld blenders are easy to use, you have to be careful in order to prevent splashing and spilling of foods, in particular when hot ingredients and liquids are used. Since countertop blenders come with a bowl and a lid, they present no such problem
So, when you compare blenders, you should carefully consider what you will mostly use your blender for, and the conditions under which you will be using it. Of course, if you can afford it, you could also get one of each type so that you would be properly equipped with the right type of blender no matter what the cooking requirements and conditions might be.