Tips for choosing the best smoothie blender
If your outlet wants to serve smoothies, milkshakes and iced drinks then you need a machine that is reliable, fast and easy to clean. A good quality commercial smoothie blender will deliver in all these areas, and although more expensive than a domestic blender, at least you know it is up to the job and won’t let you or your customers down.
Here are some Top Features to look for in a commercial smoothie machine:
Speed for smoothing fruit ingredients is an important factor. The blade should turn between 20,000 rpm to 30,000 rpm. The speed will depend on what you are using the blender for – iced drinks (slower speed required to crush the ice) or smoothies (higher speed to smooth all the different types of fruit).
The motor should be between 1 Kw – 2 Kw. It’s important the smoothie blender does not slow down even for a fraction of second. If the blade comes up against ingredient resistance the heat generated from the slowed motor will increase enormously possibly causing damage to the motor.
A single thicker blade is better than multiple thinner blades. The traditional thinner blades which point in all directions are not thick enough for crushing ice or making smoothies from frozen fruit causing them to break easily.
Timed step programs/cycles
Smoothie Blenders which have electronic programs to increase and lower speeds automatically are the most useful and give the best smoothing results. The variation in speed facilitates the returning of the fruit to the blade allowing for more smoothing which in turn means the drink does not feel lumpy.
Traditional ‘bar’ type blenders which have been designed for just mixing juices with alcohol do not have this feature and therefore are not up to the demands of making thicker style drinks such as smoothies.
As part of the electronic timing good commercial blenders will stop automatically at the end of the program freeing the operator to go off and do other things. As smoothie programs tend to be between 30-40 seconds, this feature is often seen as the most useful by operators.
Blender jar shape
Jars are normally round or square. Round jars are the traditional shape and usually found on domestic or ‘bar’ type blenders for mixing thinner drinks.
The square shaped jars have been found to be better for making thicker drinks as the shape helps to return more product or ingredients back to the blade.
The other advantage of square jars is that they are stackable. A neat feature in the limited confines of any bar.
Metal to metal drive
Good commercial smoothie blenders should have a metal drive socket on the top of the motor base which connects to the metal gear on the underside of the jar. Domestic blenders usually have plastic drives but these break quickly when put through the high demands of the commercial outlet.
Servicing and spare parts
All commercial blenders will need fixing at some point. Commercial blenders run at incredibly high speeds and wear and tear will be incurred to motor brushes and jar blade/bearings in particular. It is important you make sure your supplier can repair and supply necessary spare parts for the blender prior to purchase.
FAQs – Cold Press Juice
Centrifugal Juicer (quick) vs Cold Press Juicer (slow) Which is better?
‘Cold press’ is the new buzz word and many think this provides a more ‘nutritionally intact’ juice because there is no heating of the juice during the extraction process.
First of all many confuse the term cold press juicer and cold press juices. There is a BIG difference!
The cold press juicer or slow juicer usually refers to the masticating juicer which squeezes the fruit or vegetable by using a helical screw (similar to the old fashion mince meat grinders). It can juice difficult greens such as broccoli & kale but it’s incredibly slow. It’s fine for the home but not for the normal busy commercial outlet. There are small presses available but these are equally as slow.
Centrifugal are the other type of juicer and these work by grating the fruit and spinning the juice off so it can be caught in a container. This method is far quicker and a standard glass serving of fresh juice can be made in a good commercial juicer in about 15 seconds or so. Any juice made on this type of juicer should be drunk reasonably quickly and not stored for the next day.
Centrifugal juicers will not heat the juice any more than the cold press type and any ‘nutritionally superior’ claims made by the slow juicer people are (to our knowledge) unproven & no research is ever quoted in these claims.
Cold press juices
Cold press juices are something completely different and this refers to extending shelf life industrially by applying extremely high pressure (HPP) and cold temperature to the juice. Similar to conditions found on the ocean floor.
Instead of cooking the juice and killing enzymes & micro-organisms by traditional pasteurisation these are kept under control by pressure and cold temperature. These are serious pieces of kit and not designed for the home or the shop!