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Good immersion blender for around $100?

The title asks it. I would use if for mixing in saucepans, or possibly making smoothies (says the person who has never made a smoothie in her life!) or doing other light mixing chores. I actually picked up a Bamix at William Sonoma, and found it to be quite heavy, and also expensive. I'm pretty strong for an old lady, but that seemed too heavy to hold for a long time.

I could use one of these, but I don't know whether my price range is realistic for an immersion blender that works well and would give good service.

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  1. Cant give specifics, but I would not pay 100 for an immersion blender, lots out there for less.

    1. sueatmo: I'm *mostly* in agreement with escondido--there are a lot of serviceable immersion blenders available for well <1 Ben Franklin. I saw one at Costco last week, I think it was Braun or Cuisinart, and I think it was $25. I think it was the same one I saw Giada DeLaurentis make pureed bean soup on "Everyday Italian" tonight, if that tells you anything.

      My only quibbles are with your use of "good" and "smoothie". I think of *good* in terms of It'll-outlive-me, and I think my Bamix is doing better 20 years out than I am. But you can buy 4 or 5 Panasonics or Brauns, so it depends on your views on obsolescence and replaceability. Bamixes are generally heavier because they put *metal* in a lot of places the others put plastic.

      OK, on to smoothies... I would gently caution you away from thinking the IB will do any kind of satisfactory job with smoothies. MAYBE if you use only small, soft fruit and no ice. But smooties really require at least a blender, and preferably a bar blender, and many here say the megablenders (Vitamix, etc.) are the *minimum*.

      Good Luck!

      1. I have a Cuisinart. I picked up one for my brother in law for Christmas for 30 bucks or so.
        I see no reason for any fancier one. It does exactly what it's supposed to do, is easy to put together and take apart, cleans up easily, and is certainly not very heavy.

        7 Replies
        1. re: kayandallie

          +1 on the Cuisinart. I got mine for $39 at Macy's 2 years ago and so far it performs well. I use it about 2x per week for pureeing soup, tomatoes, milkshakes, etc.
          It came with a whisk attachment which is very good for a small batch of whipped cream.

          1. re: kayandallie

            Me too. I got it at Costco for about $30. Liked it so much I gave them to each of our daughters. I use the mini-FP even more than the IB and recently used the whisk attachment for the first time.

            1. re: c oliver

              In Jan Costco had a $10 off deal for the Cuisinart with the attachments. So for $40 I picked up two. One for us and another as a wedding gift for our son. He's been making smoothies with his and says he loves it. I think he says he uses the chopper on the ice first.

              The toughest task I had for ours is making a large batch of humuus. The large 6 lb can of garbanzo beans. It took a while and got warm but did the job. I gave it a few breaks in between when it got warm.

              1. re: bbqJohn

                I picked this up at Costco as well. To be clear, it's $40 for one unit, which includes attachments like mini prep bowl ( warning - blades VERY sharp) and whisk. I like the prep bowl attachment; the immersion blender works very well but is loud (I think either Cooks' Illustrated or Consumer Reports where I read a review, mentioned this - it was ranked #2 but #1 was significantly more expensive) and the button is slightly awkward. I had a Krups or a Braun for years, and it had a big button that was very easy to press. This one is small and kind of difficult. Still, it was a great deal. Haven't used the whisk attachment yet but there doesn't seem to be much mystery to that.

                1. re: Cicely

                  In Jan they had them for $29 each and then the coupon booklet had another $10 off coupon. So picked up two for $40... I'd ask if they would honor last month's price.

                  John

                  1. re: Cicely

                    OK, I *just* used my blender to puree some soup and realized I got something completely wrong! It's not the on/off button that's hard to use - it's the button that detaches the top that has the motor from the bottom, with the blade. My previous immersion blender was one piece, so I wasn't used to this. It's just a bit awkward, but not that big a deal.

                    1. re: Cicely

                      I'd wondered about that. Mine is like that also.

            2. Thanks guys. I actually just chose the $100 at random, because I wouldn't go over that. If I can pick up a good one for under $50, then I am more likely to do that soon. I read somewhere that folks used their immersion blenders for smoothies, but that must be higher end models. Probably lower end, but not junk, suits me more.

              1. Cooks Illustrated rated several models and one of the cheaper ones came out tops: the Kalorik Sunny Morning Stick Mixer, at $25-30. However, when I looked at Amazon reviews, I saw lots of complaints from people who specifically sought that unit out based on the CI report. As I recall, they found it hard to clean and maybe some other problems. I ended up going to the other CI-recommended model: the KitchenAid, at $50 or so. (Actually, I ordered an expanded kit which was on sale for $70-something and included various little prep bowls and mini choppers and a whisk, etc.) Works great:

                http://www.amazon.com/KitchenAid-KHB3...

                2 Replies
                1. re: Bada Bing

                  I have a Hamilton Beach that I got at the Goodwill for $3 - it's dandy.

                  1. re: Bada Bing

                    Yep, I have the KA one, with the expanded "kit", which I got on sale at Amazon.com for ~$70. I liked it so much I ordered a couple more to give as gifts. I use mine a couple of times a week, not just for blending, but also chopping, whippingn cream, etc.