Top five best mini blenders
By Aaron West
We've rounded up the best personal blenders to help you find your ideal smoothie maker.
Compact blenders usually have a one-portion blending cup that converts into a travel cup, as well as simple one-button operation and a smaller worktop footprint than a jug blender. These features make them an attractive proposition for those who want a quick and easy smoothie on the go – but which is the best?
While Nutribullet arguably started the craze for compact personal blenders, there are now loads of options from big names such as Nutri Ninja, Morphy Richards, Philips and Sage, as well as cheaper own-brands. Luckily for you, we've done the hard work of testing them all and can reveal which ones are brilliant at blending.
We've rounded up five blenders that impressed in our rigorous lab tests, blitzing their way through tricky blends of frozen fruit, ginger, ice and leafy greens.
Buying the wrong mini blender can mean you’ll spend more time sifting lumps out of your smoothie and cleaning up than actually enjoying your drink. That’s why we’ve also named three mini blenders to avoid.
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Best mini blender
This is the joint-best blender we've ever tested. It whizzed through all our tests with ease, making super-smooth smoothies, whatever the ingredients. It's brilliant at blending, crushes ice beautifully, and is a breeze to use and clean. It's a bit noisy, but it’s worth it for the flawless results.
Best value mini blender
Of all the Nutribullet blenders we’ve tested, this smart model is our favourite. Whether you're blitzing fruit, vegetables, ice or nuts, you'll be left with smooth results. And with its smart nutrition tracking, you can keep an eye on how many calories, vitamins and minerals are in your creations.
Best Nutri Ninja blender
Best budget mini blender
Three mini blenders to avoid
Our tough tests have uncovered some blenders that are best left on the shelf. Here are three mediocre models that we recommend you steer clear of. To find the perfect mini blender for you, use our blender reviews to compare models.
This is our lowest-scoring blender. It can mix together soft ingredients well enough, but it struggles with anything tougher, such as ginger, nuts and leafy greens. Its narrow blending bottle is a hassle to clean as well. But worst of all, the blending bottle can easily come undone from the blade unit as you’re trying to remove it – leading to smoothie spilling everywhere.
Popular but average - this blender remains a best seller thanks to its low price and sports bottle for taking drinks on-the-go. But we found it a hassle to clean, due to its narrow opening, and slow – it also couldn’t handle tougher ingredients like nuts or ice. You can find much better personal blenders for around the same price; consider one of our fantastic Best Buys for just a little bit more too.
3 things to consider before buying a mini blender
Before rushing to the shops to buy a new smoothie maker, here are a few things to consider:
What do you want to make?
If you just want a quick smoothie, you’ll have more choice, but bear in mind that some models will have a maximum run time of as little as 30 seconds, so aren’t suitable for tougher mixes.
If you want to make quick soups, look for a blender that can blend hot ingredients. Blenders with single-serve cups can’t let steam out while blending, leading to pressure building up inside, which can be dangerous. With these models, you’ll only be able to blend soup when it’s cool.
Is ice crushing essential?
Not all blenders can mix up a perfectly icy margarita either. Even when the manufacturer has claimed a blender can crush ice, we often find it produces a mix of watery mush and large lumps. Check out all our blender reviews to make sure you get one that will create soft, cocktail-friendly snow instead.
What accessories do you need?
If you often find yourself in a rush in the morning, forgetting to clean up the cup you used yesterday, or having left it in the dishwasher, you’ll be thankful that some models come with two or more blending cups and travel lids. If you want the flexibility to make smoothies for two, look for bundles that include cups of different sizes. As a general rule 0.7 litres will make one large or two small smoothies.
For more tips on what to look for, head to our mini blender buying guide.
How we uncover the best mini blenders
We seek out the latest blenders and put them to the test in our independent labs to find you the very best models. Our tests include the following:
- Smoothies - we challenge each blender to make three different smoothie blends from popular and hard-to-blitz ingredients, looking for the ones that will churn out tasty, lump-free smoothies. We look for consistency in blending, making sure no chunks of food are left whole.
- Thicker blends - the combination of garlic, cheese, herbs, pine nuts and oil needed to make pesto forms a much drier mix than smoothies, and helps separate the good blenders from the bad ones.
- Ice crushing - if you want to make ice-cold drinks with your blender, our reviews tell you which blenders produce the perfect crushed ice, and which make a watery mess.
- Ease of use - we reveal which blenders are noisy and slow, and which are easy to use and clean.
To compare all the models we've tested, and find the right blender for your budget, head to our blender reviews.