Vitamix Professional Series 500 Review and Test Report

By Jonathan Spira on 14 October 2011
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If you are a veteran of juicers and juice extractors, you may be tired of the amount of prep work and clean-up using such appliances requires.  If you’ve yearned for a good frappe or smoothie but have been unable to find the right blender, you’re not alone.

Blenders, at least the better ones, can be used to make everything from healthy frappes to soups, dips to dressings, and margaritas to peanut butter.  For good measure, you should also be able to crush ice, grind coffee beans, and chop vegetables.

Distinguishing factors of blenders include ease of use (some controls are way too complicated), price, and how easy the blender is to clean.  Some blenders can even replace food processors and perform some basic cooking functions.  While Waring pioneered innovations in this segment, two companies, Hamilton Beach and Oster, currently account for 40% of sales to consumers.   Vitamix, a company founded in 1921 (and which also produced the first ever infomercial back in 1949), has been supplying leading chefs and restaurants around the world with its Vitamix blender since the 1930s.

The Vitamix Professional Series 500 blender doesn’t take up much counter space. It’s 20.5” tall with its 64 oz. container in place, and it takes up 8.75” x 7.25” on the counter.

In the package, I received a Create cookbook with hundreds of recipes from gourmet chefs along with a getting started guide. It also came with an instructional DVD by executive chef Steve Schimoler.

Since it arrived about two months ago, on days when I’ve been home (and I’ve been traveling more than usual) it has taken me no more than five minutes to wash off some berries, throw in some ice cubes, followed by the berries, a banana or two, and a small amount of liquid (anything ranging from coconut milk to old-fashioned milk from cows) into the container, select “Smoothies” on the dial, press the start button, leave the kitchen for about a minute because it’s really noisy, and have a delicious frappe waiting for me.  Unlike my experiments with juicers and juice extractors, I found myself doing this on a regular basis and I don’t think this will be a short-lived fad.

I found it just as easy to chop ingredients or prepare juices, frappes, frozen desserts, pâté, and more, and the result is restaurant quality, hands down.

Click here to continue to Page 2 – Using the Vitamix Professional Series 500

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