There are two main types of juicer – centrifugal (the most popular and the cheapest) and masticating (also known as cold press or slow juicers).
Centrifugal machines shred ingredients with their toothed blades on the bottom of a spinning sieve with a force that separates the juice from the pulp. They often have two speeds for hard or soft fruits and veg, while pricier ones sometimes also enable you to juice particularly soft fruits like berries – something that more affordable models tend to struggle with.
Centrifugal juicers generally tend to be smaller than masticating ones and work quickly, and some don’t even require you to chop fruit and veg up first. But they’re not your best option if you want to juice greens, wheatgrass and (in most cases) very soft fruits like berries – which is where masticating juicers come into their own. These machines crush fruit and veg using slowly rotating gears (augers), pressing out the juice through a punctured screen and there’s little they can’t juice, with some machines doing other kitchen tasks too, such as grinding coffee and mincing. But be warned they are slower and often trickier to clean.
A high speed centrifugal juicer with a large feeding chamber, such as the L'Equip 215XL, can take as little as five minutes to prepare and produce a pint of juice, as well as clean it up afterwards. Vertical slow juicers will take a bit longer, say 10 minutes in the right hands, and horizontal masticating juicers a bit longer again.
You should be able to get two or three pints out of a typical juicing session, but there's no reason why you can't make more and just empty the pulp bin a few times during the process.
Whichever type you go for, try and get one with dishwasher friendly parts and remember not all juicers come with their own jug. A drop-stop spout and extra-large feed chute are handy extras, and do remember to check whether you need to peel and cut your fruit before feeding them in.
1. Braun Multiquick 5 Juicer: £139.99, Lakeland
When it comes to extracting the optimum amount of juice from veg and fruit, you’ll be hard pushed to find anything that beats this dual-speed machine, especially in this price range. It whizzes through whole fruit like pears and apples and the juice is smooth. Plus, the machine – which is pretty quiet compared to others – is a breeze to use, largely thanks to the wide chute. It’s easy to clean up afterwards, with dishwasher-safe parts.
2. Omega 8006: £319, UK Juicers
Juice geeks, rejoice – here’s a machine that extracts juice from veggies and greens, ranging from beetroot to kale, turning them into full-bodied, flavoursome drinks time after time. Yes, you pay more, but cheaper machines just don’t tend to cut the mustard with these ingredients, whereas this one creates delicious and healthy juice variations without any annoying froth and it is robust, as well as easy to set up, use and clean. You can even run the pulp back through the machine to get more juice.
3. George Home Full Fruit Juicer: £39, Asda
This is outstanding value for a two-speed machine that makes super smooth fruit juice. It’s easy to set up and use, it works quickly and isn’t hard to clean. We also found it’s the gift that keeps on giving because turning it off seems to prompt extra juice to flow out. It’s pretty noisy and struggles with veg, but that’s not unusual, and the chute could be wider. But these are minor niggles, when you consider the price.
4. Morphy Richards 404001: £199.99, Amazon
”Can I have a glass?’ “And me.” “Me too.” If this is the kind of conversation that goes on round your breakfast table, then this one-speed machine – which makes large quantities of juice quickly and quietly – will do you proud, leaving practically bone-dry pulp, which is always a good sign of an efficient juicer. The parts aren’t dishwasher safe, but it’s easy enough to take apart and wash up in the sink.
5. L’Equip 215 XL Juicer: £119.95, UK Juicers
You realise just how good this machine is when you test it next to some of its rival machines that cost twice as much. Not only is it significantly sturdier, but it’s powerful and quick and the resulting juice – of which you get loads, both from whole fruit and veg – is delicious and just the right consistency. On the downside, it’s a clunky, heavy machine that takes a bit of time to get to know how to use and it’s not the easiest to clean.
6. Panasonic Slow Juicer MJ-L500: £164.99, Amazon
This compact machine – which is available in several colours – makes a great addition to smaller kitchens. And it doesn’t stop at making juice, thanks to its frozen attachment which means it can create cold desserts such as smoothies and sorbets too. We found it worked quickly and efficiently, but it takes a while to get to know how to use it and the feed hole is narrow, so you’ll need to cut up fruit and veg first.
7. Sage The Citrus Press: £129.99, Lakeland
Purists may claim this isn’t technically a juicer, but the fact is that some people really only want a machine for citrus fruit. We found it whizzed through everything from lemons to grapefruits with ease and every last drop is extracted. We also like the option of fine or coarse filter, depending on whether you want juice with or without bits. Parts are dishwasher safe and it doesn’t take up too much space.
8. Philips Avance Centrifutal Juicer: £133.72, Amazon
You can choose whether you want thick or clear juice with this clever machine that that gets top marks for extracting juice quickly and proficiently, largely thanks to the extra-large feeding tube, which eats up large veg and fruits with no need to pre-cut. Unlike most machines, it doesn’t drip afterwards and the quick rinse function works wonders when it comes to cleaning up.
9. Kenwood PureJuice JMP601H: £199.95, Kenwood
Here’s another machine that’s great for feeding the masses as it makes a lot of juice at speed. It’s also a winner if you don’t want to wake everyone up while you’re preparing it because it’s pretty quiet. Of all the machines we tested, it made the best orange juice hands down and it did quite well with tougher ingredients like carrots too. We’d have preferred a wide feeding chute and easier-to-follow instructions, but neither are deal breakers.
The Verdict: Juicers
The Multiquick 5 Juicer isn’t the latest model from Braun, but it’s our favourite centrifugal juicer because it makes short work of whole fruits, making it quick to use, and it’s easy to work and clean up afterwards. For masticating juicers, our top choice is the Omega 8006, which extracts juice from veggies and greens far more efficiently than other models that are even more expensive.
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