Fruits and vegetables, while healthy, can be pretty repetitive to eat over time. This can cause people to want to eat other, less healthy foods. Fortunately, you can spice up your meals by using blenders and juicers, introducing a new way to eat (or drink) your favorite plant food.
But between the two methods, which one is better? We break down the differences between blending and juicing, and why you may want to use one method over the other.
What is blending?
Blending is arguably the more popular method versus juicing. It involves a high-speed blade that cuts up anything inside the blender. Over time, the pieces are cut so finely that, with the right ingredients, can result in smooth and delicious shakes. The reason this works so well is that fruits naturally have a smooth and somewhat soft texture to begin with. When blended, the fruit breaks down quite easily, resulting in a smooth and even thickness all around.
Another interesting feature that the best blenders have is that many of them have selectable speeds. You can configure the speed of the blender to get your desired texture. If you’re a fan of smoother shakes, you can crank up the speed to finely blend everything inside. If you prefer slightly more texture, however, then leaving the blender at a slower speed will allow some of the larger chunks to stay intact. This can be great if you prefer to consume the shake with a spoon instead of just drinking it straight from the glass.
What is juicing?
Juicing works differently from blending. While both methods result in “liquids”, juicing produces the smoother product of the two. The best juicer takes in any substance it’s fed, extracts all of the liquid from it, and pours it out in a container. The remaining solids don’t magically disappear, though - they’re fed into a separate container that contains all the pulp with barely any moisture left.
Juicing is interesting because it leaves you with two “products” instead of one. The liquid can be consumed or used in a recipe, but what of the pulp? Well, there are a few ways to use it. You could, for one, eat it. The pulp is just as edible as the plant that it came from - it just tastes very dry. Alternatively, you could add it to a meal or simply compost it in your yard. The pulp doesn’t have to be thrown away every single time.
Blending or juicing?
Now that we know how the two methods work, which one is best suited for your kitchen? The answer isn’t as simple as you think. You see, blending and juicing are best suited for different types of ingredients, and some fruits are way better used in one method than the other.
Take mangoes, for example. The “meat” of mangoes is incredibly soft. It’s so soft that the juicer will find it very difficult to extract anything from it. It’s far better to use a blender as even if you blend everything in (minus the skin, of course), you’ll still get a very smooth shake that’ll taste great.
On the other hand, let’s imagine carrots. Carrots are pretty tough to eat raw - you can even hear the crunch when you bite on one. Because of their hardness, it would be very difficult to blend a carrot without having a few chunks inside. If you used a juicer, however, you could extract all the flavor and liquid from the carrot without having to deal with any of the solids. This carrot juice can then either be consumed or used in a recipe such as a carrot cake.
But what about fruits and vegetables that work well in both blenders and juicers? The answer depends on your personal preferences. Since blenders pulverize everything that’s inside, including the membranes and pulp, you’ll end up with a semi-liquid that’s pretty thick. You’d need a straw or spoon if you want to consume it quickly. Some people prefer this texture, and as such, they blend most of their fruits to achieve it.
On the other hand, juicing yields only the liquid essence of the fruit or vegetable being juiced. The flavor of the juice is extremely concentrated as a result, and it can be overwhelming when drunk on its own. Juicing is great when paired with other ingredients to make a more complex food or drink. Aside from this, it’s also easy to consume - easier than blended products. So if you have someone with a disability, it may be better to feed them juice instead of a blended smoothie, especially if they don’t need all that fiber or pulp.
Finally, there’s the process itself to consider. Blending is generally easier to do than juicing, because you’re left with no by-products, and all the ingredients go into one container before blending. This saves you time and effort, and since blending takes no time at all, you’ll have a finished product in a minute or less.
For juicing, though, it’s a little more difficult. Firstly, many juicers only accept one chunk at a time. If you have many carrots, for example, you can only feed one and have it completely consumed by the appliance before you can add the next. Then, there’s the pulp that you have to deal with after you extract the liquid. Finally, some juices may not be great when consumed by themselves, so you’ll have to prepare a more complex recipe to use it with.
Juicing and blending may seem like similar methods at first glance, but in truth, they are very much different. Blending is great for leaving the solids and mixing everything at once, whereas juicing is preferred if you only want to extract the pure liquid from it. Depending on what your preferred breakfast meal is, you can either go for a nice smoothie or fresh, extracted juice to go with your meal. Regardless, both methods are great if you want to enjoy fruits and vegetables in a different way.