The complete, 101 guide to hand blenders

Top 7 to buy In depth reviews How to choose Definitions Comparisons User tips

 

( You’ll also find buying links to the best hand blender products we found for you in the U.S., U.K. and Ireland, Australia, Canada, Spain, Germany, and Italy ).

Affiliate Disclosure

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.  Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I may earn a commission.

Join us here on email to get our latest news and direct contact with Paul and Aoibheann.

Definitions

Immersion blender – Stick Blender – Hand held blender

First thing to know is it´s exactly the same as a stick blender or immersion blender. They´re just different terms used in different countries or suppliers. Immersion blender is mostly used in America, stick blender is the term used by Cuisinart – one of the biggest suppliers there.

What a hand blender is

The easiest way to show you, is to tell you what it can do, compare it to other well known kitchen appliances, and show you a video of one in action.

What a hand blender does

Known as the Swiss knife of the kitchen, the hand blender can do almost anything There are so many reasons to have one !

It can beat, mix, purée, chop, whisk, mash, & more. 

Although you will find restaurant kitchens also use them, most people use it at home as a convenience too to make soups, purées, sauces, salsas, dips, healthy baby food, and smoothies. Some can even julienne vegetables, cut french fries, or knead dough ! The other most popular use of for soap making, face masks, candle making.

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).

Check out our a-z of kitchen tasks and foods that a hand blender will create for you.

 

Image: The Bamix. 

We looked in detail at 27 top hand held blenders. From 27 , we get down to 7 for you here, covering all categories from home cook sets, right up to wanna-be chef sets.   

The original hand blender was invented by Bamix. It´s still our personal favourite !

 How did we choose our top 7

On this page we picked 7 hand blenders out of our top 15, and give you their key details, and links to in-depth reviews.

You´ll find 4 straight forward hand blenders – 1 budget, 1 specialist, 1 mid-range, 1 pro model. 

Jump to TOP 4 hand blender choices section.

 

For the final three, we show you the best upgraded hand blender sets, where you get more of a full blown hand held food processor !

We´ll show you – 1 great for foodies that like to re-create restaurant dishes; 1 great for families and keen home cooks; and 1 for the keen, minimalist, purist kind of cooks – a fabulous high quality, neat little set for prosumer buyers.

Jump to TOP 3 all in one hand held processing sets section.

p.s. You can see fuller detail on the top 3 basic and simple, 3 mid-range, 3 specialist, 3 hand held processor models, and top 3 professional (prosumer a.k.a commercial grade) hand blenders. models on our separate,  top 15 page.

Comparisons

Comparing the hand blender with similar kitchen appliances.

Immersion Blender vs. Countertop Blender or Food Processor

 

Compare this kind of hand held tool to the larger counter-top blenders or food processors, 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. It’s more often used for small quantities, so it’s perfect for baby food blending when it’s time to start them on solid foods.

With a stick blender, you can also 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 !

Not all hand blenders do all things however. you tend to get what you pay for, and once you go up the pricing scale you may have to choose if you want your hand blender to also be a full blown blender, or a processor. At the top of the scale you should get everything included.

Hand blender vs. Countertop Food Processor

 

Generally, a hand blender does some of the mixing and blending that a food processor does, but it only works on very small quantities. The chopping bowl that now comes with most hand blender sets acts like a mini- food processor with one blade that chops up anything from cooked vegetables or fruit to nuts and hard cheese ( depending on the power and quality of your blender and chopping bowl). You are limited to 1,2 or maybe 3 cups only. A food processor also allows you to knead dough and chop much larger quantities. It also usually comes with extra attachments to slice and grate.

However… at the top of the domestic hand blender sets, there is a new category known as hand held food processors. These include a larger food processing bowl powered by the hand blender unit, to do exactly what a food processor does ! So now there is a real cross-over between hand blender sets and food processing sets.

 

Hand blender vs. Countertop Blender

As the hand blender popularity increases, the countertop blender like our big heavy KitchenAid one is fast going out of fashion. The ninja bullet type blenders are still popular though as these are a smoothie toGO type of solution. It seems that as you go up the scale of hand blender sets, where you start with the extra chopping bowl and whisk and masher attachments perhaps, then you have to choose if you want to go down the large blender jug with stronger blades route or the larger bowl for food processing (with blades chopping and kneading,  and disks for slicing and grating).

Examples of this would be the Braun MQ 745 vs. the Braun MQ 9087x. Only in the U.S. have the both been offered in the same set (the Braun MQ9097 ). The Bamix hand blender on the other hand has a more minimalist and  approach,  allowing you to add the pieces as you go. In fact, Bamix doen’t even offer a big blending just because it’s blades are so powerful that you can use them in a big jug of your own anyway !

Hand blender vs. Hand mixer

 

First, let’s clear this one up. A lot of people think a hand blender is a hand mixer ( given that mixing and blending is a similar action ).  But, the equipment with these names aren’t anything remotely the same to look at,  have a look at video below to see the hand blender in action.

Most people our age have visions of our mums using hand mixers to make cake batter in the 1970s ! The hand mixer is limited to mixing with its few whisk and kneading type attachments. The hand blender on the other hand, can do many more jobs from mixing, to blending, chopping, etc. Discover all the jobs it can possibly do for you in our how to use a hand blender article.

Hand Blender vs Spiralizer

The Spiralizer is the latest attachment we have seen on hand blenders. Again it seems you have to choose between a hand blender with spiralizer attachment, or food processing attachment. Braun have launched a great model in May 2019 which actually uses their jug blender, with extra spiralizer attachments … so cleverly, you are getting both spiralizer and blender. This is where they have one over on Bamix or Breville for a change. We’re still waiting for these two companies to bring out spiraliser attachments !

The basics

What do you get when you buy a hand blender?

 

The OXA Smart Immersion Hand Blender – a powerful 4 in 1 set.

particularly well priced buy for 2019

(Click the image to check out the best price on Amazon)

so… We choose the mighty hand blender

Our 4 top hand blender buys

These have been chosen to cover the full spectrum – for the basic or starter cooks, something simple and specialist, and on to the main mid range model for the happy home cook. Finally, we head upstream to the cream of the crop, for the professional, commercial, or wanna-be chef model.

Naturally, they also come with three very different price tags.  When you see our LIVE prices as in the table below, they actually come straight from Amazon UK ( live !) , so that you can see the current price for that item, in that country.

Check out how much you should spend, and other frequently asked questions here? Our top 15 hand blenders also gives the best buys in each of these sections – entry level basic and 3 in 1 sets, mid-range home hand blender sets, and commercial grade blenders.

Affiliate Disclosure : As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.  Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I may earn a commission.

Basic and Cheap

hand blender

Russell Hobbs 22241

A cheap and cheerful, simple hand blender.

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.

The Russell Hobbs 22241 is powered by a 200 watt motor, and has two speeds.

 

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

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

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. It also won because of the simplicity, the price, and yup, I hear myself say, the plastic for safety´s sake !

So it’s perfect for mashing vegetable and baby food blending.

The Masha 2+ is 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 got a narrow top and so lightweight too, making it perfect for seniors or arthritic hands.

NOTE

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

 

Best Household

hand blender

Kenwood triblade HDP406

The Kenwood Triblade system Pro HDP406 (or HDP406WH as it´s known, because its WHite).

We found this to be the best value, highest quality, multi-functional hand-blender for the home cook.

It was difficult to choose between this and the Braun Multi-Quick 5 series.

This particular Kenwood model, the HDP406 won because it does everything it promises incredibly well.

It has a lot of performance improvements, and lots of attachments for the modest price.

So you can blend, mash and chop your way to the perfect meal… quickly and effortlessly.

NOTE

In the USA, if you find it, it will be for international use only, so we take you to the KitchenAid 5-speed hand blender we love, and at a brilliant price too !

 

Professional

hand blender

Bamix >200W hand blenders

Gordon Ramsey & Jamie Oliver are both big fans of Bamix of Switzerland.  It’s small, power packed, fairly priced.

We love all models (preferably 160 Watts upward…see why here).  You can pick your blender and just add attachments and accessories. And… it would likely outlive most other hand blenders.

Best Commercial hand blender

The Bamix gastro 350 is the top of the range in one purist respect, the gastro 200 a more popular choice. Chefs talk about the it’s reliability a lot (they call it an immersion blender) ! 

The SwissLine makes the most fabulous hand blender gift set. 

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

 

and if that´s not enough !

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

Pro grade all in one

hand-held food processor

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 upgrade would be the 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!

 

Foodie all in one

hand-held food processor

Breville / Sage 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

Braun MultiQuick 9

The MQ9087x in the U.K and Australia is our choice, and the MQ9097 (only available in the U.S., Canada and India) 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.

What else do you need ?

Attachments & accessories

What comes next ? What attachments make up the 2-in-1, 3-in-1, 4-in-1, 5 or 6 piece stick blender sets.

 

First… the jug or beaker accessory… 

Usually the beaker is the first accessory you get, even when you buy a basic hand blender.  Usually the beaker is anything from 600 ml to 1 litre and is not just used to measure, but to blend in. Blending in a high narrow container creates less splashing and mess!  Less often, although it does happen, you get a whisk, or chopping bowl first instead as the first accessory.

 

then… the whisk attachment

Now you effectively also have a hand mixer for whipping and whisking eggs, and maybe batter preparation for baking tasks. Normally this attachment looks like a manual whisk, sometimes with a separate motor as in the Kenwood HDP406WH ( picture also below in our winners tables ). With the Bamix stick blenders however, the whisk is just a tiny little blade with holes in it ! Remarkably clever – check it out here.

 

or… the chopper / grinding bowl

This little attachment allows you to make sauces in the bowl, chop nuts, herbs, hard cheeses and maybe grind up spices if it is powerful enough. Typical sizes are 1.5 cups / 350ml or  2 cup / 500ml bowls.

 

 then… the masher attachment

The masher is now becoming a standard attachment, and most often the 5th addition, giving you a 5-in-1 hand blender set ! It is used for potato mashing mostly, but for vegetables or fruit mashing too. This attachment is most often made of plastic, not steel.The reason for the special mashing attachment is to mash in a way that avoids making simply a starchy paste. The holes in this attachment are designed to extrude the mash in a spaghetti style, and there is often a paddle inside the masher to stir the mix also.  As a result, it’s a great additional tool for making ultra smooth baby food too!

if you have a specific need

Specialist hand blender attachments and accessories

 

After the 5 main attachments, more specialist accessories are added. For-instance, the big soup foot you get with the Kenwood HDP406WH. With the Braun MQ 745 you get an extra Braun accessory (the MQ40 jug)  to crush ice (see it in our most awarded hand blenders post). We have it on good authority from Braun UK that the MQ40 is compatible with all of the MultiQuick3, MultiQuick5, and MultiQuick7 series so you can add it on as an extra !

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

We’re addicted, and the research continues, we’re sure the sparilizer attachment must be next ! (* in fact watch our blog for updates because it’s been launched in May 2019 and we’ve written about it here, in our article deciphering the Braun hand blender range.)

The final differentiators

Quality and Style

So, if all the hand blender sets can add the same attachments and accessories, how else will they differentiate themselves from their competitors, and show they are the best.   Simple, the simpler ones that cannot improve any more tend to either go downmarket and compete on price alone, and the rest show their prowess with better style, and quality – shown through the durability, power and speed. For example, the Kenwood HDP406 is already at the top of its own range, so to upgrade it we would go to the Triblade HDX754CR ( CR meaning cream colour) model from the more recently introduced kMix range, which is higher grade and more stylish whilst doing all the same tasks as the HDP406.

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. 

How to decide which hand blender is the best one for you?

 

( click over to complete buying guide here )

1.  Ease of use

First, and most importantly it must feel good to hold, not too heavy or awkward to actually use.

Be careful when looking at the listed weight of a hand blender before buying. If it comes with accessories, you quite often get give the whole product weight ( i.e. the stick blender, the chopper, the masher etc etc ), so just look out for the weight of the stick itself. In our posts we have used the weight of the stick only. We’d say anything under 1kg is light enough.

2.  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!).

3.  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.

4.  How it your hand blender help you in the kitchen ?

It’s best to know what you want to do with your hand blender, because you may not need to pay for all the multi-tasking it does! On the other hand, do you need it for a specific purpose? 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 !

5.  Stick blender colours and material

The main colours for hand blenders are black, and white and the material plastic of some sort and stainless steel. Most hand blenders are white, often with an accent of colour, but there are many fully coloured ones available too. The Masha by Dash is essentially white with a black top and green accent on the shaft, and Bamix offers all the most popular kitchen accent colours such as red, lime green, silver and many many many more.

Coincidentally, our winner’s images below are all white machines.  The Russell Hobbs 22241, and the Kenwood HDP406 only come in white. If you like this Kenwood triblade system and want more colour, and style … and steel, then upgrade a little to its sister model, the kMix Triblade. You’ll also find it mentionned in our in-depth Kenwood HDP406Wh Triblade review.

 

This should get you started, but for more complete detail have a look at our 7 point detailed checklist.

 

How we did our hand blender tests and research.

 

Daily use of a hand blender  – both work and pleasure !

It’s true, Aoibheann, in particular, is addicted. We have been using a basic stick blender since university days, and finally handed it on to a student last year. We’ve been using a mid range multi-tasking 3 in 1 set more often in our every day married lives for years ( and still use it !). Our latest investment ( well, Aoibheann’s birthday present last year )  was in the semi pro version for even more processing power. We were curious about the fact that some well reputed review sites were reporting test results that didn’t compare with our own experience or many users reviewing the products.

We realised that sometimes you need to practice, or know the technique, or simply read the manual to know what your hand blender claims it can do, and how to use it. Simply trying one after another in a simple one-off testing session just isn’t enough.

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!) – making connections with shop staff, manufacturers and suppliers, restaurants and cafes.

We’re testing it out all the time, and will keep this blog updated as we go. If we’re not using it, or talking to users about it, we’re trawling through sites for information for hours on end every day…. like a truffle hound !

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 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. to be honest though, the research never ends and there is limited time to share everything we are doing, but please keep connected and we’ll get faster at it !

 

Detailed research on all the reviewers and testers

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 / 9. We have detailed the top 15 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 along with our new simplified lifestyle.

 

Customer reviews and product information from brand sites

( + Amazon, John Lewis, Argos, YouTube, Tesco, and many more)

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, forums, 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.

No friend or acquaintance gets by without her asking if they have one too, and peeking into restaurant kitchens to chat to the chef is also now an ‘almost daily’ activity.

It’s Aoibheann’s favourite kitchen toy, and she’s become a hand blender geek! We want to know what all you cooks and chefs are using, so please get in touch on [email protected] and let us know your experiences too!

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!

About Us

We're professional foodies that have sold up, gave up the stuff, and simplified life.

We've been the demanding customer, and the daily hands-on high end restaurant and boutique hotel ownerWe understand food, drink, hospitality, and real customer satisfaction.

We want to help you find the right tools to cook better, save time, and be able to make restaurant quality food and drink at home.

There are too many choices thrown at the home cook. We believe that everyone should be able to choose the equipment they really need, not what someone else wants them to buy !

So… we'll cut through all the biassed or confusing information online to get the genuine detail to you. Then you can make better choices that suit you.

Join us here for the freebies and the inside story.

Our daily mantra is to eat well, cook better, live more.

We want the same for you !

 

Affiliate disclosure

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.  Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I may earn a commission.

Follow us…