Need to know
- CHOICE experts rigorously test stick blenders in our labs for chopping performance, processing performance, ease of use and more
- Our tests find that price isn't always an indicator of good performance
- We recommend doing your research before you buy to make sure you're not paying too much for a good handheld blender
A good stick blender is a versatile kitchen tool that's a quick and easy way to blend, puree, whip and blitz. Because it's smaller and lighter than, say, a blender or food processor, it's a great option for little jobs where getting out the full-size food processor or blender would be overkill.
You can pick a stick blender up for as little as $12, or splurge up to $400 – but as we like to say at CHOICE, price doesn't always correlate with performance. So how much should you spend on a stick blender? It's hard to say, and it really depends on what you want to do with it and how frequently you plan to use it.
But as with many of the products we test, paying a higher price doesn't guarantee that you'll get a better stick blender. We put two expensive stick blenders up against two cheaper products to show you how to get the most blitz for your buck.
Check out our stick blender reviews for the full results of our expert lab tests to find the right product for you.
Smeg vs Nutribullet
Exxy, established Euro vs cheap newcomer
Smeg has a reputation for high-end, aesthetically pleasing appliances with price tags to match. Unfortunately, the price tag doesn't always match the performance – and this is especially true of its stick blender.
Priced at $259, the Smeg HBF02PBAU stick blender is the second-most expensive product our experts tested – and yet it's one of the lowest scoring.
It didn't perform terribly – in fact it received excellent scores for chopping and processing – but for the money it's reasonable to expect better performance.
Nutribullet may not have the same reputation as Smeg, but it certainly doesn't have the same pricetag
Nutribullet may not have the same reputation as Smeg, but it certainly doesn't have the same pricetag! These two stick blenders received almost exactly the same scores across our tests. While Smeg was slightly better at making pesto and is a little easier to clean, the Nutribullet scored a perfect 100% on chopping carrots, while the Smeg came in just behind with 90%.
Both blenders come with pretty much the same attachments, the only difference being that the Smeg has a larger jug capacity (1400mL vs 900 for the Nutribullet).
While they may be neck and neck on just about every measure, there's just no ignoring the fact that the Smeg stick blender costs more than three times as much as the Nutribullet. And it certainly doesn't deliver three times the performance.
The Smeg product may be beautiful, but realistically a stick blender isn't going to live on your bench, and its beauty won't do much for you when it's in the cupboard. In this instance, you're far better saving your money by going for the cheaper option. Or check out our stick blender reviews to find the perfect hand-held blender for your needs.
Bamix vs Braun
Swiss precision vs German ingenuity
Spending $199 on a stick blender may well be out of many people's budget, but it's fair to say that most of us would have to think long and hard before spending $399 on one.
So is spending double the money worth it? In this case, not really. The Braun either equalled or outperformed the Bamix on tests like chopping carrots and making pesto, with the Bamix only coming out ahead for ease of use.
Most of us would have to think long and hard before spending $399
Plus, the Braun comes with a host of attachments that make it even more versatile, such as a whisk accessory, fine shredding insert, coarse slicing insert and french fries disc.
The Bamix is a classic design that's stood the test of time, but just because it hasn't changed much over the years doesn't mean it's still the best in class. If you can't stomach the thought of spending $400 on a stick blender, then the $199 Braun model is a good alternative.
Stock images: Getty, unless otherwise stated.