questionsour next purchase - a blender

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Blendtec. Best. Blender. Ever.

Expensive as all hell though, but hey! It can blend an iPad!

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I purchased the Margaritaville Explorer blender last time @prettywootprincess posted it at 50% off. I still didn't want to spend that much on a blender, but let me tell you, I'm in love with it. I'm bringing it as my date to a wedding later this month. (Cordless model FTW!) I'm still looking for tuxes that will fit onto it so he doesn't have to go naked, because that would be inappropriate.

That, however, would probably not fit your multiple canister criteria for making salad dressings. I'm ridiculously pleased with its drink-making ability, though, which is all I use my blender for: margs and smoothies. This thing is solid, so I assume it'll last, but have no proof.

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@perkalicious11: Try Build-a-Bear Workshops. They might have tuxes that fit. If they are too big, you can always pin it back.

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@perkalicious11: You are special. And my eyes are crappy right now but I will PM you about it and fill you in later.

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I agree with how odd it is that they have 26 different speeds of blend. They should narrow it down to 2 or 3 speeds and focus on less smoke.
I made this blender seal of approval:

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Although I'm having trouble locating blenders with the dual jars, these two models are Recommended by Cooks Illustrated (America's Test Kitchen).

Best Buy = Kalorik 16909, $38.88 on Amazon. Has a 48-oz glass jar and two speeds.

Overall Best = KitchenAid KSB560, $84.89 for the metallic chrome color on Amazon; other colors available for more $. Has a 56-oz polycarbonate jar and five speeds.

Happy Blending!

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@mmaurice01: I'm seconding this. We got a BlendTec at Costco, and have been happy with the results. If you get the ice / liquid ratio a little off (too much ice, not enough liquid), then it will stop blending once the ice is crushed pretty fine, but I don't know of any blender where that doesn't happen.

You can get a second pitcher for it, but the larger one worked fine for salad dressing.

Yes, there are a lot of buttons on the front. These are more than just speed. The blender goes through a program depending on the button, and it seems to work pretty well.

Blenders are one area where (from my admittedly limited experience) you get what you pay for. Not one of the sub-$100 blenders I have owned have been worth the price I paid. The BlendTec may be a bit steep, but you are buying a quality product.

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Just read up on pros and cons with the Kalorik 16909.
Two cons were: 'can leave some clumps behind' and 'not durable'
(pros: Inexpensive, Easy to clean, Nice-looking design, Good ice crusher)

edit: 'can leave some clumps behind' would be a funny selling point for a cat.

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Got a Blendtec for Xmas last year. I swear I've never enjoyed using a blender so much as I do my Blendtec. I make soups several times a week as quick meals (take some veggies, toss into the blender, hit 'soup' and BAM... hot soup). I make fruit smoothies almost daily for breakfast (toss in a banana, a mango, a couple of peaches, and some pineapple and hit the smoothie button... instant smoothie. Add a little ice if you want it colder or just keep the fruits in the fridge). I make my own peanut butter (and cashew butter). I make my own flour. Honestly, this blender is pure awesome.

If I had an iPod, I might even blend it for fun.

And it comes with a 3 year warranty, but I got a card to fill out for an extra 4 years to total up to 7 (likely to compete with their major competitor in the space, VitaMix -- which I've used and which did not impress me as much).

Expensive. But if you use a blender much at all, it's so very much worth it.

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Unless you're willing to pony up $400 or so for a Vitamix, the KitchenAid KSB560 is the best blender I've ever owned. You can find 'em new for around $100 lots of places, and factory refurb directly from KitchenAid for $59, here:

http://www.shopkitchenaid.com/product_detail.asp?HDR=outlet&T1=KTA+RKSB560WH

edit: oops, what I get for jumping straight to comment - @afurball beat me to this reccomendation.

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@afurball: Wish I could just give half a vote. I think of Kaloric as JUNK. I recommend strongly just giving your money to charity instead. On the other hand, the Kitchenaid is a good solid product. There's better stuff, but you have to give a LOT more money (as has been noted elsewhere). NO Kaloric.

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@shrdlu: If it were my money being spent then there's no question it would be on the Kitchenaid blender.

I <3 my Kitchenaid mixer, food processor and hand blender far too much to stray!

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@erikadyscern: So what was the decision? Inquiring minds want to know! Or, at least, I'm curious.

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@dosquatch: Oh dear. Now you are making me out my bizarre proclivity to research products ask a bunch of items and then never purchase anything. I am still in the pondering do I really need to replace the smoking Oster that doesn't actually blend stage. I think on most of the items I have asked about, I have never purchased. Think of it as a way to save money. I just think about new purchases.

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@erikadyscern: I've done the same thing. "Maybe there's a cheap replacement that would make my life easier..." leads to a question post. Then I realize I'll have o spend more than I'd like for something that I want, so I talk myself out of it altogether.

I'm definitely still in the "debating" stage on the stand-alone ice maker I asked the community about long ago...

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@erikadyscern: I think I have an Oster blender base and glass jar (the lid was many years ago lost) that's in perfect shape if you'd like to try it as a replacement. Currently, it's in my "need to figure out what to do with all this working stuff I don't want" box.