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8 best hand blenders for speedy, mess-free blitzing

Forget elbow grease – these handy appliances puree, chop and whisk up a storm in no time

Joanne Gould
Wednesday 31 March 2021 17:07
<p>Choose from multipurpose to cordless models, perfect for soups, smoothies and sauces</p>

Choose from multipurpose to cordless models, perfect for soups, smoothies and sauces

A decent hand blender is a valuable asset to have around the kitchen, allowing you to whip up sauces, soups and smoothies with very little effort.

These handy stick-style blenders tend to be compact and convenient – far more so than large counter-top blenders or food processors – meaning you’ll turn to them for many food preparation tasks.

But what makes a good hand blender? We’d recommend looking for something that comes apart, so that you can wash the blade section easily, and look for a model that has different attachments, like a whisk or chopper, to make the most of your investment.

Blenders needn’t break the bank though. You can pick up a perfectly serviceable model for around £40 that will last for a few years of regular soup-making, that said, spending less than that generally means a flimsy model.

Of course, if you splash out on a high end brand or go for an especially multifunctional appliance, the cost increases significantly.

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We tested all of these blenders and found a range of fast, effective and easy to use appliances that will have you whizzing up meals in no time at all – and without the clear-up. From multi-purpose machines to cordless versions, these hand blenders will have you cooking up a storm.

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Braun multiquick 5 MQ5235 hand blender

A mid-range machine from Braun, this hand blender is a seriously good buy, with a very powerful 1000w motor. Chopping and whisking attachments also come as standard, meaning you can really cut down on clutter in your kitchen. It may not look as swish as some of the others we’ve listed, but it has some really valuable features.

We like that it has a full range of speeds – with a comprehensive twist dial top like the more expensive Smeg blender (£129, Currys.co.uk) we tested – and that the head is designed to be anti-splash, so tomato soup won’t splatter all over your cupboards. The blades on this blender are really sharp – and they’ve popped an extra one in – meaning it easily handles tricky foods like soft, leafy herbs right up to hard nuts and large pieces of veg. The chopper has a 500ml capacity and its function is equally efficient, while the whisk makes whipped cream fast. Removable parts are also all dishwasher safe: what more could you want?

KitchenAid cordless hand blender 5KHBBV53

Should you have £129 to spend on a blender, this is the one you should spend it on. A lovely looking appliance, as all KitchenAid goods are, this shiny, smart hand blender is cordless, meaning you can move freely around the kitchen while you cook, rather than being tethered to a plug socket – and the power is just as strong as a corded.

The rechargeable lithium ion battery charges from empty to full in two hours, or you can use the 20 minute quick charge which will allow enough power for a few uses; a battery light lets you know when it’s time to charge. Comprising a blending arm, a removable pan guard and a blending jar, this hand blender is compact, idiot-proof to put together and comes apart for easy dishwasher proof cleaning and storage.

At 20cm, the stick arm is well able to reach into deep pans for smooth soups and sauces, and the powerful blades gave us a big batch of beautifully silky veg puree in under a minute, without the unit becoming warm at all. The blender has a variable speed switch to allow control over texture, meaning you can blitz anything to a lump-free consistency right up to looser, chunky meat soups. There is also a blending jar available for ease of prepping things like baby food or breakfast smoothies.

Russell Hobbs desire matte black 3 in 1 hand blender

This affordable hand blender from Russell Hobbs is a good value, multi-use appliance that ticks every box. Coming with a choice of stainless steel blending leg, whisk and mini chopper attachment, this 3 in 1 blender cuts down what you’ll need in the kitchen. The whisk and blending attachments can be used directly in the pan or bowl safely, otherwise the kit includes a 700ml beaker that’s perfect for smoothies, soups and sauces, while the chopper has a 500ml capacity well suited to small veg, herbs and pesto.

This blender has a choice of two speeds, plus pulse setting which, at 500W we found plenty powerful to whizz up velvety soups, making quick work of cooked celeriac, carrot and potato without being too noisy or getting too hot. And of course, as with all separate mini chopper attachments, it’s a godsend – you’ll never cry chopping onions again. All parts are dishwasher safe too.

Cuisinart cordless pro hand blender

A sleek, high-end cordless hand blender from Cuisinart to help you whip up culinary creations all around the kitchen. Powered by lithium ion, this blender is quiet but mighty, and blitzed its way through a large pan of soup in a minute or so.

Easy to slot together, you can choose from the standard blending attachment or chop your way through herbs, nuts, spices and veg with the mini chopper. Or whisk up batters, mousses and more with the electric whisk add-on. The cordless set-up means that you can do all three without getting tangled up in wires.

The unit uses a USB charger, which is convenient, and once charged it gives around 30 minutes of continuous power with battery indicator lights, giving you a handy countdown. Surprisingly compact and with attachments that are all dishwasher safe, this is a good quality and convenient investment.

Smeg 50s style HBF02 hand blender

At almost the same price point as the KitchenAid cordless model (£129, Kitchenaid.co.uk), this is yet another high-performance hand blender. Unlike the KitchenAid blender though, this lovely looking Fifties style retro stick blender from Smeg includes all the usual accessories for whisking and chopping within the price – plus a genius mashing attachment – but it’s not cordless and it’s certainly not compact.

This is a fairly serious piece of kitchen equipment and you’ll find yourself using it time and time again. It crushes ice (impressive) and the capacities are much larger so you could make not only enough smoothies for a family breakfast, but chop enough veg for a large batch of sofrito in the food processor and whip enough meringue for an entire pavlova too.

At 700W this is a high powered motor, with a twistable top for very variable speed, from low to intense. The unit is comfortable and sleek, and not too heavy that it would be cumbersome to use for a long time. Stylish and functional.

Tower 300W stick blender

As budget blenders go, this one from Tower is pretty good. Unlike most cheap models, this unit feels really robust – the two pieces attach easily and securely to form a weighty but comfortable appliance. The 300W blender has two speeds – we used the lower speed and pulsed to make pesto, while the top speed made its way through the ingredients for a green juice perfectly.

The makers say it can be used for five minutes continuously, which sounds like an awful lot of blending, and the parts come apart for washing, with the bottom part dishwasher safe, and the electrical unit itself easy to wipe clean. This blender is compact, so easy to store in a drawer, or there is a hanging loop for extra convenience.

Lakeland hand blender set with whisk and chopper attachments

We’ve included this set from Lakeland as it got an honourable mention in last year’s hand blender testing. This year, things have moved on, but this 600W stick blender is still a perfectly useful piece of equipment to add to your kitchen arsenal. It’s easy to assemble, comfortable to use and looks good too.

The stick measures 21cm, so is able to be used largely splash-free in saucepans (though mind the metal head on non-stick pans) otherwise, blend straight in the 700ml beaker included. There is also a 350ml mini chopper, which will cope with ginger, garlic, breadcrumbs, softer nuts and small veg items, but isn’t the sharpest chopper we’ve tried.

The whisk attachment proves useful to bakers once again, as the power means your mixes are whisked up quickly. Choose from low and high speed blending and a useful variable speed dial. Annoyingly though, the instructions claim you should only blend for up to 15 seconds at a time. So while our chunky mushroom soup, baby food and sauces are suitable, if you’re looking for precision and power this isn’t the blender for you.

Tefal optichef HB643140 hand blender

A solid multifunctioning kit here from Tefal, the optichef contains a whizzy hand blender, chopper, whisk and 800ml beaker. They say the blender does the job up to 30 per cent faster than their classic two blade blenders as it’s designed with a bell-shaped head and four specially positioned blades for best flow and even blending without splashback.

We found it did indeed blend quickly (though very noisily) with a powerful 800W motor, but it was as messy as expected. The blender is lighter than many we tried, without feeling flimsy; its ergonomic design means it is comfortable to use and has a soft, non-slip handle for improved control.

We liked that there are 20 variable speeds clearly labelled, which makes it useful for preparing purees and textured foods for weaning. Plus, the turbo option for extra smooth blends makes luxuriously velvety soups and whisks cream and egg white in super-quick time. The large beaker is helpful, and the mini chopper has a 500ml capacity to accommodate a large onion, and has no problem with soft herbs. The blade shape also means that you don’t get bits of food stuck in the head of the blender, so all you need to do to clean it is put it in the dishwasher. Tefal, doing their bit for the environment, say the item can be repaired for 10 years.

The verdict: Hand blenders

Ultimately we felt our best buy had to be awarded to an appliance that ticked most of our boxes, and so the Braun multiquick comes out victorious here. It’s the most powerful blender we tried, without being noisy or hot, and has all the bits and pieces you’d want to go with it – an easy decision! Special mention goes to the KitchenAid hand blender though for its impressive cordless power.

For more hand held mixers to add to your culinary arsenal, read our review of the best electric hand mixers that whizz up a storm in the kitchen

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