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- 1 What Will You Be Juicing?
- 2 Will You Be Drinking Your Juice Right Away?
- 3 How Much Time Do You Have for Preparation and Juicing?
- 4 Are You Concerned About Noise?
- 5 How Much Money Are You Willing to Spend on a Juicer?
- 6 Design and Features
- 7 Conclusion
Juicers range from small appliances that are inexpensive, to large countertop juicers costing hundreds of dollars. With so many options, it can be time consuming to decide which juicer you should buy. This buyer's guide will help you sort through your options and figure out what your priorities are, so you can choose the right juicer.
In this article, we will cover the following:
- What Will You Be Juicing
- Will You Be Drinking Your Juice Right Away
- How Much Time Do You Have for Preparation and Juicing?
- Are You Concerned About Noise?
- How Much Money Are You Willing to Spend on a Juicer?
- Design and Features
What Will You Be Juicing?
The types of fruits and vegetables you plan to juice is one factor in decided which type of juicer to purchase.
Centrifugal Juicers are good for firm-fleshed produce like apples or carrots.
Masticating Juicers are best if you want to juice leafy greens like spinach, kale, or wheatgrass. This type of juicer slowly crushes the plant leaves and extracts the liquids. Some masticating juicers make good citrus juice provided you peel the fruit first.
If you want to juice soft fruits like kiwi, peaches, or mangos, the soft flesh will often clog the filter on a centrifugal juicer and make them impossible to work with. A good masticating juicer is the best option for soft fruits.
If you plant to juice tough, fibrous vegetables like celery or beets, you will need either a masticating juicer or a twin-gear juicer. These types of juicers have the strength to grind plant fibers and extract the juice.
Will You Be Drinking Your Juice Right Away?
For optimal nutrition, any juice you make should be consumed right away. However, if you have a slow juicer that requires a lot of prepping and chopping, you may want to save time by making juice ahead of time.
If you plan on drinking your juice right, any kind of juicer will work for you. However, if you plan on storing your juice to drink over the next day or two, it's important to use a twin-gear or masticating juicer.
The crushing mechanism of these juicers extracts liquid without using heat or introducing oxygen, both of which will impact the nutrition and shelf life of your juice.
In general, if you are using a centrifugal juicer, it is best to drink the juice right away and definitely within 24 hours. The juice must be stored in an air tight container and refrigerated. Some people use mason jars; however, I use glass jucing containers.
If you use a masticating juicer, don't store the juice longer than 48 hours. I use lemons in my recipes and found that the flavors of the juice last longer.
Juices made with a twin-gear unit, can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 72 hours.
How Much Time Do You Have for Preparation and Juicing?
All juicers require produce to be cleaned and chopped, and usually for seeds and rinds to be removed and discarded. However, some juicers have a larger feed tube that accommodates larger pieces of produce, while some have a small feed tube that require it to be chopped more finely.
Centrifugal juicers make juice very quickly, but can be inefficient in terms of extracting the most possible juice from every ingredient. Masticating and twin-gear juicers operate more slowly, but produce higher quantities of juice. If you need fast juicing, you may want a centrifugal juicer.
Are You Concerned About Noise?
In some households, it's important to have a quiet juicer. Centrifugal juicers can be quite noisy, producing sounds roughly approximate to a blender, while masticating and twin-gear juicers operate more quietly.
For those who juice early in the morning, have sleeping children, or simply don't like noise, a quiet juicer may be a high priority.
How Much Money Are You Willing to Spend on a Juicer?
If you have decided to incorporate fresh or pre-bottled juice from the grocery in your health regimen, then you will be spending some extra money.
If you have definitely decided against buying pre-bottled juice or fresh juice from a juice bar, then you'll want to think about the cost of juicing at home.
If a very good masticating juicer is the right juicer for you, be prepared to make an investment. Most models start around $350-400. Twin gear juicers are even more expensive.
Another consideration is the cost of the produce. This varies according to where you live, the store you frequent, whether you buy organic or non-organic, the recipe and how often you juice.
The following is a very rough calculation. Let's say you spend $16 a week on carrots, apples, celery, kale, cucumbers, lemons, and ginger and juice a 16 ounce portion four times a week (210 servings a year).
Initial cost of juicer $200
Lifespan 5 years: $40/year
Ingredients: 16x52 = $832
Cost per 16 oz serving $4.00 ($832/210)
Juicing at home: $832+ $40 (juicer cost)=$872
Cost (estimate) of a high quality pre-bottled $1260 ($6 bottle x 210)
Buying pre-bottled juice $1260
Savings per year: $388
If the life of the juicer is 5 years, then you would save roughly $1940 over five years.
One option is to buy an inexpensive centrifugal juicer and see how often you use it.
Design and Features
Once you have an idea what type of juicer is right for you, there are still a lot of overall design considerations that can separate high-quality juicers from lower-quality machines. You may want special features that make your life easier or use kitchen space more efficiently.
Here are some of the key design aspects you may want to consider.
Do you need adjustable speeds?
Some juicers have adjustable speeds that can make faster work out of juicing tough root vegetables.
Does it splash out your juice on the counter?
Some juicers have spouts that are well-designed and produce juice in a gentle stream. Others tend to be a bit more erratic, and can spurt or splash juice.
How much room do you have in your kitchen?
Some juicers can be big, heavy appliances that take up a lot of room in your kitchen. Blenders don't take up quite as much space. However, there are differences between juicing and blending.
Depending on the layout of your kitchen, cord length can be an important consideration.
Do you need suction cups?
Some juicers have suction cups on the base that provide extra stability and prevent accidental “walking.”
Some juicers have filters that are more prone to clogging, which can reduce the efficiency of juice extraction, or even require you to pause the machine and clean the filter during your juicing.
Do you want other features and a more versatile appliance?
Some juicers also have other food processing attachments and capabilities, so they can slice and chop produce, make nut butters, grind spices, and other kitchen prep functions. While it can be nice to have a more versatile device, especially if it takes up space in your kitchen, that can also mean a lot of attachments to store.
With a huge range of juicers on the market, there are not only different types of juicers, but a wide diversity of options, features, and choices within each type.
With so many options, you can choose an excellent juicer that fits your cooking preferences, your available space and layout, your busy schedule, and your preferred juice type, to have a juicer that complements a complete, healthy lifestyle.
Considering all of these questions and options will help you choose the right juicer for your needs, and enjoy fresh, nutritious, delicious juice every day.