The Stick / Immersion / Hand Blender…all you need to know about buying and using one.

( Our English guide for U.S., U.K., Australia )

Discover what a hand blender can do for you ; how to choose the best one for your own needs ;  and our top hand blender choices ( and hand-held food processors ) for 2019 .

It can beat, mix, purée, chop, whisk, mash, and more !

Known as the swiss knife of the kitchen, it can do almost anything (you will see, there are so many reasons to have a hand blender) !

However, most people use it to make soups, purées, sauces, salsas, dips, healthy baby food, and smoothies. Some can even julienne vegetables, cut french fries, or knead dough!

The thicker or harder the mix, the more power that you need. The more powerful stick blenders can crush ice, and purée fibrous fruit and vegetables (and even fish and meat).

 

Immersion Blender vs Blender

Compare this kind of tool to the larger counter-top blenders, where you have to put the food into a stationary, fixed capacity container –  instead of the other way round.

A stick blender is so convenient, as well as being so portable. With a stick blender, you can move around the kitchen and ‘stick’ it into pots, jars and jugs … there are even cordless versions to take out of the kitchen altogether !

A hand blender takes up less space, is much easier to clean. You’ll find once you have one, you tend to use it more than any other kitchen gadget !

 

Hand blender vs. Hand mixer

A lot of people think a hand blender is a hand mixer ( given that mixing and blending are similar ).  But, it isn’t anything remotely the same,  so have a look at one below. You can also discover all the jobs it can possibly do for you in our how to use a hand blender article.

video still of handblender

click the image above to see a hand blender in action !

What do you get when you buy a hand blender?

 

First the jug… then the 3 in 1 !

When you buy a basic hand blender, you might also get a jug to measure and blend in. The next upgrade tends to be to a 3 in 1 set where they add either…

a whisk

which means that now you effectively also have a hand mixer for whipping and whisking eggs, and maybe batter preparation for baking tasks. 

or a chopper / grinder bowl

which means now you have a device for making sauces in the bowl, chopping nuts, herbs, and maybe spices grinding.

Specialise or Accessorise !

After that, you can add more accessories to mash (like the Kenwood HDP406, or the Morphy Richards hand blender shown above (from our top 15), or the Braun MultiQuick 5 series) . With the Braun MQ 745, you get an extra Braun accessory ( the MQ40 jug)  to crush ice (see it in our most awarded blenders post). We have it on good authority from Braun UK that the MQ40 is compatible with the MultiQuick3, MultiQuick5, and MultiQuick7 series. 

It is more unusual to have a hand blender start with a speciality but it does exist ! The Dash Masha above really specialises in perfect potato mashing and baby food puréeing. There is also a  Kenwood Triblade model with just an ice crushing attachment, only available in the U.S.  to do both blending and powerful ice crushing only.

Quality and Style

After that, the hand blenders mostly tend to get better in style, durability, power and speed. For example, the Kenwood HPD406 is already at the top of its own range, so to upgrade it we would go to the Triblade HDX754CR model from the more recently introduced kMix range, which is higher grade and more stylish but does all the same things.

You can see a picture of the cream version here on our “we like” blog. We think it’s rather like a KitchenAid in style, with its beautifully presented pieces all one one stand. You don’t have to spend much more to get this model and we think it’s amazing value now on Amazon.  You can check it out on the UK price comparison quick search window when you get to the bottom of this page,  or head over to the bottom of the Kenwood in depth article for buttons to the UK and Australia. Sadly we aren’t seeing it in the U.S. at the moment. 

What are the most popular hand blender brands ?

~ Braun, Bamix, Breville, KitchenAid, Kenwood, Hamilton Beach, Cuisinart, Smeg, Dualit, Dasha ~

You’ll see some of the these same names come up again and again in the world’s most awarded hand blenders over the last few years. Some are provided globally, others are country, or region specific. We have explored the UK, then the U.S. and then Australia for all the best ones available in your region. If we haven’t covered your area yet, just comment below if you need some direct help.

The most well known brands have been developing lots of models over the decades so there are a lot around. More recently the various styles, features and packaging of attachments & accessories has made it a really daunting task to find the best value hand held blender that suits your own specific needs.

 

Country specific models

The U.S. has several popular brands like Hamilton Beach, Cuisinart, All Clad, Epica etc. Outside the U.S. you will find our best known Kitchen specialists such as Kenwood, Russell Hobbs, KitchenAid, Dualit, Smeg, and Breville.  Breville by the way is most popular in Australia, but is represented by the brand Sage by Heston Blumenthal, in the UK.

General electrical specialists who also produce great ranges of hand blenders are the European names we know well… Braun, Bosch, Morphy Richards, and Philipps.

There are of course many many other lesser known names that come and go. We found some interesting U.K. brands new to us… like vonShef, and we will be checking these guys out more! Some brands take a break from this product line every now and then, and some re-badge for a while with chefs & celebrities, or even shop names.

 

Quality lasts !

We found our highest quality blender ‘Bamix’ was a niche immersion blender specialist which straddles both the cook and chef world!  This company, the original inventor of the ‘immersion’ blender deservedly has a separate guide for you on the Bamix product range explained People quote having these immersion blenders for up to 40 years!

Buying the best hand blender for you.

This should get you started, but for more complete detail have a look at our 7 point in depth checklist by clicking here

So which hand blender is the best one for you ?

Most importantly it must feel good to hold , not too heavy or awkward to use.

Also, it’s best to know what you want to do with it, because you may not need to pay for all the multi-tasking it does !

 

Price

Some things will push price up. Usually power, durability, the material ( e.g.metal hand blenders), ergonomics, design, colours, and extra attachments  that allow you to whisk, beat, chop, mash, mince, slice, grate. The expensive ones, and all their accessories, should last longer, and work better ( no plastic bits cracking, not horrendously noisy, doesn’t splash food everywhere, and the motor shouldn’t overheat easily!).

 

Power

Don’t be fooled by power wattage. Some hand blender reviews state that you need over 500W to be great. The top pro hand blender models can be more powerful than those at just only 160Watts. It all comes down to design and efficiency of the motor.  Also it’s the revolutions per minute that count and you really only need two speeds, a fast one for tougher tasks, and a slow one for lighter foods.

 

Do you need it for a specific purpose ?

Do you need it for crushing ice, mashing potatoes, blending baby food, grinding nuts, or just for smoothies or soup ? Maybe it’s simply something beautiful or vintage you are looking for ! Or does it have to be quiet, and not scratch your pans. So maybe you want your hand stick blender blades to be non metal, perhaps plastic !  Do you need your stick blender to be easy to hold and operate for arthritic hands, or for seniors or kids to use ?

Read on then … we have just the one for you this year !

Our 3 favourite hand blender choices

These 3 have been chosen to generally cover something for everyone – from the basic or starter model, on to the mid range home cook model, and this time we want to show you a specialist model we cannot ignore. Finally, we head upstream to the cream of the crop, for the professional, commercial, or wanna-be chef model. ( Our top 12 hand blenders also gives the best alternatives in each region.)

Naturally, they also come with three very different price tags.  You can spend from under £20 for a basic stick blender to well over £200 for  a real prosumer multi-purpose set. Check out how much you should spend, and other frequently asked questions here?

Stick blender colours

Coincidentally, our winner’s images show all white machines too.  The Russell Hobbs 22241, and the Kenwood HDP406Wh (our 2018 home hand blender winner)  only come in white. Most hand blenders are white, but there are many coloured ones available too.The Masha is essentially white with a black top and green accent on the shaft, but Bamix offers all the most popular kitchen accent colours such as red, lime green, silver and many many more !

By the way we are almost ready to update our 2019 winners to add back in the upgraded version of our 2018 home hand blender winner.. the KMix Triblade from Kenwood. We just have e few more things we want to check on its trials and tests. In the meantime, please check it out on the ‘great deal‘ we like blog, or at the bottom of our in depth review of HDP406Wh.

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As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Basic and cheap

hand blender

UK live price : £11.96

Russell Hobbs 22241

A fabulous first kitchen gadget to buy for someone that wants to start cooking (especially for simple soups, dips or smoothie making).

It’s chunky, and it comes in a simple glossy white finish. It has a plastic body and shaft, with a stainless steel blade. It’s powered by a 200 watt motor, and has two speeds. A cheap and cheerful, simple hand blender.

The best back-to-basics blender that just does what it says on the tin… it hand blends… that´s food (not your hand !)

see in depth guide

NOTE

We take you to the best basic and cheap stick blender equivalent in the U.S. (by Hamilton Beach), and to the better Russell Hobbs 650W RHSM650 model in Australia.

 

Best specialist

hand blender

UK live price : £38.99

Masha 2+ by Dash

(a.k.a. Masha 3 in 1).  The Masha is a real winner when it comes to smoothness & speed for potato mashing and baby food blending.

A masher, mini food processor, egg beater and whisker. The parts are also BPA free and dishwasher friendly.  Extremely highly rated by users. The only thing it doesn’t seem to do is grind hard stuff !

It’s lightweight too, making it perfect for seniors or arthritic hands.

 

NOTE

In Australia it´s called the Masha Rotor Cone Vegetable Masher

 

Professional grade / commercial

hand blender

UK live price : £169.94

Gordon Ramsey & Jamie Oliver are both big fans of this commercial hand blender. Chefs talk about its reliability a lot (they call it an immersion blender) ! 

It’s small, power packed, fairly priced, and would likely outlive most other hand blenders.

The Bamix gastro 350 is the top of the range in one purist respect, the gastro 200 a more popular choice, but we love all models (preferably 160Watts upward…see why here).  The SwissLine makes the most fabulous hand blender gift set. 

see in depth guide

NOTE

In Australia… it´s called the Bamix SwissLine Cassette 200W White. In the USA, we take you to the popular Bamix Gastro 200 option

 

Hand Blender vs Blender vs Food Processor !

Now, how would you like to take your hand blender one stage further. There is one last upgrade available that can turn your hand blender into the ultimate, all in one, hand held food processing station… read on!

UPGRADE to the best 3 hand held food processors

A few stick blenders go even further, by adding more accessories that take them into the food processing world.  The attachments are usually another container ( larger than the chopper bowl, and more like a food processing bowl),  and an abundance of chopping blades and disks.  So, if you don’t have a food processor already, and don’t want to do slicing, grating and perhaps heavier batter mixing by hand, you will need one of these mini food processors too !

Your little blender has now basically become the all encompassing, all-in-one, hand-held kitchen appliance!

Foodie

all in one, hand-held food processor

UK live price : £108.00

Breville All In One Processing Station

In Australia, it´s called The All in One Stick Mixer. In the U.K., this Breville BSB530XL model is the same as the Sage Control Grip model (Breville owns Sage!).

Heston Blumenthal is behind the making of this wonderful foodie focussed all-in-one set. It´s not just about the upgrade in functions here, Sage likes to take each tool a little further. So a lot of thought has gone into how the tools will help you produce not just great food, but interesting, chef-quality food.

 

 

see in depth guide

Home cook

all in one, hand-held food processor

UK live price : £113.29

Braun MultiQuick 9

The MQ9087X in the U.K and Australia is our choice, and the MQ9097 (only in the U.S. at the moment) would be our ultimate package as it has an ice crusher included.

Our choice for the home cook goes deservedly to Braun.

Their MultiQuick series provides everything from the basic stick blender in series 1, to the series 3 which is great for young mums, the series 5 probably the most popular, and the latest series 7 and 9 with more power, pull, and other bells and whistles.

 

 

see in-depth guide

Pro grade

all in one, hand-held food processor

UK live price : £253.93

Bamix Superbox

In the USA… it’s a brilliant set with everything except the SliceSy, so be sure to buy the SliceSy separately.
Similarly, in Australia…buy the SliceSy separately, and add that to the Swissline.

The Bamix SwissLine would upgrade to Bamix Superbox which is essentially the SwissLine plus accessories (a food processor and a few extras) to give you the complete Bamix set.

The ultimate hand held food processor. Lightweight, compact, powerful, and lasts a lifetime!

 

How we did our hand blender tests and reviews.

Daily use !

We have been using a basic stick blender since university days, and then a mid range multi-tasking 3 in 1 set in our every day married lives for years. Our latest investment is in the semi pro version. We find the hand blender helps us eat healthy food more easily.  It reduces wastage also, as we use up leftovers to knock up a soup, dip or smoothie in a jiffy.

We’re testing it out all the time, and will keep this blog updated as we go. We hope you also find it gets the creative juices flowing, because it’s so easy to try new recipes out in small quantities. Follow us on Instagram to see what we do on the fly or check out some of our recipe posts.

 

Detailed research on all the reviewers and testers

On top of our own experience at home, on training courses, and in our restaurant and bar,  we have researched every detail online and check them out in every shop we see ( is that sad or bad!).

Over several months, we studied in great detail all the hand blender tests and blender reviews (UK and world-wide), and the customer comments on user forums, and the top award winning hand blenders of 2017 and 2016 as well as new ones introduced in 2018. We have detailed the top 11 most awarded hand blender brands and models here. We continue to keep updated with any news and try to fix errors we see on buying sites and even manufacturer’s own sites!

All the research inspired us to use our own stick blenders even more, and we have to admit we are now so smitten with this magic wand that we’ve passed our basic one to a teenager, and have bought the top commercial grade model to go with our new simplified lifestyle.

Customer reviews

Customer feedback is also one of the things we valued most with the hotel and restaurant. Being no. 1  on Tripadvisor for 8 years we know how to read well between the lines! So we have trawled through 1000’s of online reviews and chats about people’s personal experiences with these submersible blenders. From this we also realised the most frequently asked questions, and put our answers here… Just to be thorough, for you.

It’s Aoibheann’s favourite kitchen toy, and she’s become a hand blender geek! We continue to talk to cooks and chefs about what they are using, so please get in touch on hello@fromcooktochef.com and let us know your experiences too!

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25 helpful articles on buying & using a hand blender 

 

Detailed buying guide

This detailed guide shows you how to decide which hand blender is right for you. It gives a checklist of the main criteria to look at, including power, speeds, quality, design, use, price, functionality.

read more

Hand blender FAQs

Enough of the hand blender tests and trials. Here are all the silly, (and frequently asked), questions about hand blenders. Answered here by our in house expert !

read more

Cuisinart vs KitchenAid

cuisinart vs kitchenaid – competitor kitchen gadget companies. Let’s compare their hand blender offerings and see the most popular in the U.K. and the U.S.

read more

Celebrity hand blenders

Celebrities and top chefs love their kitchen gadgets. They are happy to blend along with the rest of us. So which hand blender brands do they like?

read more

Great deal !

A bargain price for the stylish Kmix sister to the Kenwood HDP406WH. If you like KitchenAid, you’ll love this.

read more

QUICK SEARCH

Type your search term in the box, and see availability, details, and prices on Amazon right now!

As a gift, a hand blender is perfect for university students, ( don’t worry, it’s a cinch to clean !) a wedding gift, for having a new baby or new home, or even new kitchen. Why not just give a gift to the keen cooks that love to feed you !

This handy little gadget is such fun to use, like an extension of your hand, and who knew it could be so good for a healthy lifestyle too. Check out some of our soups, smoothies and dips recipes, and follow us on our social media accounts to see what else we do with it!

Paul and Aoibheann