questionscan you recommend a good blender?

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I'm sure someone will coming along to disagree with me but....We have a Ninja that we've had for about 3 years. My wife makes smoothies daily with frozen fruit and spinach and we've never had any problems with it.

The containers are plastic. Mind if I ask why you need glass?

cleaning tip: as soon as you've finished making the smoothie rinse the container, add a drop of detergent and some water then blend again.

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@nmchapma: My father purchased a ninja a couple months ago and he really likes it. Says it blends like no tomorrow and the quality is great.

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I agree with the other two answers. i own a Ninja and can't imagine using any other blender. I use mine daily and it has never come across something it can't blend.

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For under $100 your best bet for blending greens is probably the Ninja (can't speak from experience as I don't have one).

We invested in a Blendtec (ever seen a "Will it blend?" video?). Great warranty (even greater if you can pick it up at a Costco when they do their traveling sales) and great quality. We work ours like crazy and ended up getting a blendtec because we burned out another blender's motor. My wife uses it to make homemade Lara Bars and we make smoothies, dips, ice cream, etc.

We buy green smoothies out and about periodically and I've never had one blend greens as well as the blendtec. But some of that may be attributed to knowing how to use the blender you have.

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Joining the Ninja parade. Can't imagine anything better. I have a hand held immersion. Crushes ice & everything else. Liquify? - oh, yes! You must be careful w/it, you'll have a quick liquid before you know it. Use it in pans, skillets on the range. In bowls to mix. Easy to clean. Excellent product.

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I too love the Ninja. Have one I got off here back in the day.

That said, I could NOT get it to blend kale properly. It never was able to break that down. Spinach, frozen fruits, even making frozen banana "ice cream" was no problem.

But kale it couldn't handle.

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@nmchapma:
The reason I prefer glass:
Plastic always seems to get icky fast. Scratches easily, fogs up and never looks clean. Glass in my experience is also easier to clean.

To all who kindly answered: I have never heard of Ninja, but I will check it out, even if no glass.
And will also check out Blendtec.
Thanks for the responses.
I'm sure I'll be back w/ more questions after I look them up.
I'm worried about @bingo969 's experience w/ kale and Ninja.

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@thepenrod: Ok I looked at the blendtec and saw the price and wow --that is an investment .
I wouldn't use it enough to make that kind of commitment. But now I can see what "excellent" would be.

Off to see what the Ninjas are all about.

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As far as I can tell, Ninja no longer makes a handheld immersion blender. Glad I got mine when I did here on woot. Soon after that I bought 1 to gift...that was either from Amazon or Walmart.

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http://www.oster.com/blenders/all-purpose-blenders#start=0&sz=60&srule=PriceHightoLow
I have owned the Oster 500 watt beehive for over 5 years. We use it for ice. If it died tomorrow I would pick one of the 600 watt models.
This is like the one I have but mine has a metal base http://www.amazon.com/Oster-Retro-Chrome-Beehive-blender/dp/B00021LN8U/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

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@ceagee: There aren't many blenders that can handle kale well. Blendtec and Vitamix are the major contenders (but both are pricey).

We could justify the price because we were making homemade baby food at the time in addition to everything else and the store bought stuff adds up. But now that we've had it for a couple of years, we would get another one because we actually use it more than we used to use our old blender. I think they have a 7 year warranty now, too. You might consider what you want to use it for and what you could use it for. If you want to blend kale and other greens once a week, I wouldn't worry about it (especially if you are blending it in a smoothie with fruit) but if you would like to do that daily, the investment is worth it.

FYI, Blendtecs have a counter so you know how many times you've used it. We're over 1500 in under 3 years.

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I've had a Ninja for a few years, and while I loved it, a while back I started having trouble with the power pod. It started out where it would have a hard time actually working when I pushed down, and worked it's way to always being on if it's plugged in. I use the pulse method and do not like to rapidly plug in and unplug an electric device, not sure that's good for the outlet. But a new power pod is almost as much as a new Ninja, and while I may go that route I'd love a Blendtec or Vitamix instead, as I actually do use my blender almost every day and while I'm quite poor they may be worth the cost even for me.

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So I've never had one but I've seen these around as well

http://www.amazon.com/Ninja-NJ600-Professional-Blender/dp/B003VWXXXK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1395774693&sr=8-1&keywords=ninja+professional+blender

It's a lot cheaper than the Blentec and seems more powerful than the push top ninja.

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It seems like the reviews for the Ninjas and all but the Blendtec and Vitamix all say they can't handle Kale.
Even the Vitamix says baby kale only. I guess kale is going to have to be in small bits. :/ And I'll try to get baby and see if that is better. I have a Braun hand blender. Apparently they don't sell them anymore in the states and a few places lamented that.
I just think I will burn it out if I keep up w/ the smoothies.
Seems like a lot of reviews state how ones mad 25+ years ago or whenever ago were all made better. That seems to be a recurrent theme w/ a lot of kitchen appliances. Maybe I can find a deal on a good old one at a garage sale .

But I don't want to wait. So going to think on it a bit. I have a gift card for Macy's so I'm going to see what kind of deal I might be able to find there.

Thanks for all your help.
I'll be back if I have more questions and definitely to let you know what I ended up getting !

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@ceagee: Most baby greens will be more tender (and blend easier) and a lot of them will taste less bitter and/ or more sweet. Of course the nutritional value will be different. Depending on where you live, baby kale can be hard to come by. I know it is all the rage and it actually works well in smoothies, but if you opt for a machine that can't handle kale, there are a lot of other great greens.

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@thepenrod: Can you recommend specific alternatives to kale ? I would greatly appreciate it !
I would guess baby spinach for one. Others ? Thanks !

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Just to throw this out there:
You're right - a VItamix or BlendTec is a serious investment. However, I'd say it's one worth seriously considering.

If you have $100 now to drop on a blender, maybe save up for a few more months and get something that absolutely will do everything you want.

You might also consider going the Refurbished route to save money. I did with Vitamix and I'm very glad I did.
http://joyofblending.com/which-vitamix-to-buy/

That's a great breakdown of the different models and discusses refurbished units as well.

I know it's way more than you were looking to spend but with what you are wanting to do, I think it really is worth thinking about. I use mine multiple times a week for smoothies and I don't have to worry about what I toss in it - it just blends it up and does so far better than anything I've ever used. It really does make a difference. And I still haven't even gotten into everything it can do yet.

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@ceagee: We juice most of our greens/lettuces. When we blend them, we usually use kale or baby spinach (I'll use regular spinach if the store is out, but they are rarely out of baby spinach in this day and age). Kale works well because for some reason, the flavor blends nicely with fruit and ice, it also adds a nice bright green color (None of that nasty dark green or brown. Yes, research has shown that colors do change how you taste things.), is high in numerous vitamins and minerals, and isn't too terribly expensive.

Other options would depend on what your goals are. Are you looking for particular vitamins? Do you need to avoid certain foods? i.e. Blood thinners often require a certain balance and/or consistency of vitamin K. Do you already get high amounts of certain vitamins in your diet? Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. Are you just trying to add variety and get/stay healthy? Have you cut out certain foods and need to replace the benefits they provided?

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I have one of these: http://www.hamiltonbeach.com/smoothie-blenders-single-serve-blender-with-travel-lid-black-51101b.html

$15 at Walmart. It blends kale without any issues, I've been using it every morning for the last 9 months and haven't had any issues. You do have the cut out the big stem and just do the leaves, but otherwise it blends it up until it is liquid with no small pieces. Sometimes I freeze the kale if I buy too much and it starts looking bad, and then it blends even easier.

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@nws2002: Thanks. but it's a little small. I want to be able to make 2 at a time if I want. At 175 Watts, this isn't any more powerful than my hand blender. Which works, but I'm burning it out.

The tip on freezing the leaves though makes sense. Everything gets mushier after it's been frozen. I'm going to try that !

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@thepenrod: I'm just trying to overall eat healthier. Not on blood thinners or anything like that.
I actually am protein poor, so it's a good way to use yogurt and nuts and such and add them w/ good other foods to get a balance and not be overwhelmed or bored with eating greek yogurt all the time !

Thanks for your input and suggestions.

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@ceagee: Swiss chard, romains, pretty much anything you can eat in a salad that has goes color. The real problem is finding ones (or a mix) that don't mess up the flavor too much and are of a decent color. Also, Somme will blend better than others depending on your blender. I haven't tried seaweed yet, but it's supposed to be the new super food. I'm sure there's a certain kind but I haven't looked into it. Chia seeds (yes, the same used for Chia planters). Don't ignore the variety of root veggies. Beets are great with orange (don't use too much beet or you'll be in the bathroom a lot). Parsnip and carrot are good with many things.