Vitamix vs Blendtec: Which is better?

It may not seem like it now, but it took me a while to jump onto the high-speed blender wagon. When Austin and I moved to Los Angeles nearly 10 years ago, I brought with me a blender that I thought was pretty good at the time. (It was made by Breville, which I usually consider to make quality kitchen appliances.) I remember hearing about high-speed blenders in the magazines and health books I was reading at the time, but I always thought to myself, “How much better could they really be?” I felt like my smoothies turned out good enough in my standard blender, so I stuck with it until it died… which only took about a year and a half.

blender-review-bestEven though we didn’t have a lot of spending money at the time, I couldn’t help but think I’d be saving money in the long-run by investing in a high-speed blender the next time around, since many of them came with a 7-year warranty. I had been buying a “good” $100 blender every year or two since I was in college, so spending $350 once, and then not buying another one for 7+ years sounded like a pretty good deal to me. However, I didn’t know which high-speed blender to buy– at the time, I had heard that Vitamix and Blendtec were pretty comparable.

Choosing the Vitamix

I couldn’t find any reviews online saying that one brand was decidedly better than the other, but my decision was helped by the fact that two of my friends had just gotten a Blendtec. I only had one experience using theirs– making frozen margaritas at their house– and I wasn’t super-impressed by it right off the bat. I remember that we had to start and stop the blender a couple times to use a spatula to help the ice reach the blades, because the Blendtec doesn’t come with a tamper. It was also REALLY loud. (Though, all high-speed blenders are fairly loud.)

vitamix-review

Because I wasn’t blown away by my initial experience with the Blendtec, I decided to go with the Vitamix because I thought the tamper seemed necessary. I had never even tried a Vitamix before buying it, but Amazon had a great deal on this 2-speed model at the time, so the timing seemed perfect. The moment it arrived, I was hooked. The tamper helped my smoothies blend in seconds, and they were always thick, creamy, and super-silky-smooth. It even breaks down seeds from berries, like raspberries and strawberries! I’ve been a happy Vitamix customer ever since– owning the same old blender for nearly 8 years now. I’ve only ever had one issue with my blender, and when I called Vitamix customer service they immediately sent me out a free brand-new replacement; no questions asked. Keep in mind that I use my blender up to 4 times a day, especially when I’m testing recipes for a cookbook, so it gets quite a workout!

My Experience with BlendTec

Because I’ve had such a good experience with my Vitamix, I’ve never looked into using another blender… that is, until Blendtec reached out to me a few months ago. They offered to send me a complimentary blender so I could see for myself how they compare to Vitamix. I’m always up for seeing if there is something better out there, so I happily accepted their offer and soon received the new blender. Right out of the box, I was super-impressed by the sleek design and light-up electric touch pad. It seemed nicer than any car I’ve ever owned! Another nice perk of the Blendtec is that it fits under my kitchen cabinets fully assembled– the Vitamix container is taller, so I have to store the blender pitcher next to the base, rather than on top of it. (Not a big deal either way, but I think it’s worth mentioning in case you’re OCD about how your countertops look!) Regardless of how it is stored, you still have to pull the blender away from the wall to add anything inside– I couldn’t keep the blender under the cabinets on my counter while actually using it.

blendtec

While I was very impressed by the look and feel of the Blendtec, my first experience blending was not love at first use. I made my usual go-to smoothie (the Chocolate Superfood Shake from my preorder bonus) in the Blendtec using their smoothie pre-set “smoothie” button, and it took significantly longer than the Vitamix to create a smooth consistency– probably because I wasn’t using a tamper to help stir it along like I usually do with the Vitamix. I think it’s also worth noting that I’m used to my shakes being super-thick and smooth, like a traditional chocolate milkshake, and it was difficult to achieve this texture since the Blendtec doesn’t come with a tamper to help keep everything moving towards the blades. (The Blendtec’s electric touch pad actually kept warning me that my smoothie was too thick– it wanted me to add liquid, which would have resulted in a thin and runny smoothie.) I stopped and scraped down the blender twice, and even after that I found small bits of dates in my final product– enough to clog my straw while I was attempting to drink it. I’m so spoiled by how smooth my smoothies are with the Vitamix, that I was really disappointed to have a less-than-perfect smoothie! (My other family members were disappointed by the texture, too, to the point that my son wouldn’t even drink a smoothie made in the BlendTec.)

After that first experience, I didn’t use the Blendtec again for a few days because I didn’t want to risk my family members not enjoying another smoothie. In fact, I didn’t try it again until the Blendtec reps reached out to me, asking how my experience was. They were surprised to hear that my first experience wasn’t great, but I promised them I would try again to see if it was just beginner’s bad luck. I later tried making an all-fruit smoothie using the manual settings instead of the pre-set button (because I prefer manual settings and having full control), but the final result was also disappointing because the seeds from the strawberries didn’t totally break down, and I had to add more liquid than I would have liked to in order to keep the smoothie blending without a tamper– so the overall smoothie was too runny. Needless to say, I wasn’t impressed the second time around, either.

To give them a fair shot, I also tried blending a smoothie in the smaller Twister jar that came with my BlendTec package, to see if the spatula-like attachments on the side of the lid would help with a smoother blend. Unfortunately, the Twister jar is not intended for liquid smoothies (it’s intended for making nut butter or dips like hummus and guacamole), so I ended up with a messy disaster there, too. I would consider the optional smaller blender jar for nut-butters a “perk” of the BlendTec, but it’s not enough in my opinion to make up for the lower-quality smoothies, since that’s what I use a blender for the most often.

After reporting my unsatisfactory experience to the BlendTec reps, they recommended that I call their customer service line to see if I could be doing something wrong. I had already read the instruction manual and used the pre-set smoothie buttons– shouldn’t it be that easy to use such an expensive blender? (As a side note, I’ve never had to call a customer service line for any other brand of blender I’ve used to make sure I’m not the problem.)

Side-By-Side Comparison

vitamix-vs-blendtecIn a nutshell, here’s how I feel that the two blenders compare:

blendtec-vs-vitamixTo me, the Vitamix is the clear winner and that’s what I would ultimately recommend you buy if you’re trying to decide between the two. To be fair, I think if you’re upgrading from a standard blender, anyone would be impressed by the texture of a smoothie made in the Blendtec, because it’s definitely going to be an upgrade from what you’re used to. However, I think it would be very difficult to enjoy using the BlendTec after using the Vitamix. (But maybe that’s just me– all I can share is my own opinion.)

best-blender

To be clear, this is not a sponsored post and I have no affiliation with Vitamix. They did not send me a free blender, and I’m still using my 8-year-old, two-speed model that I bought myself. In my opinion, my old Vitamix blender creates better smoothies than the free newer model that BlendTec sent me. (I’ve heard that BlendTec is amazing at milling grains into flour, but I find the Vitamix to be perfectly adequate in that regard as well.) Clearly, I’m under no obligation to post a positive review on BlendTec’s behalf, despite the fact that they sent me a free blender. (I will always post my honest opinions!)

Money-Saving Tip:

If you’re looking to buy a new blender but don’t want to pay full-price, I’d recommend looking into the refurbished options, like this certified refurbished Vitamix model, which still comes with a 5-year warranty. Vitamix also makes a new low-profile model that fits under kitchen cabinets, and that model is available in a cheaper certified refurbished option, as well.

Note: I would like to eventually add some other blender recommendations to this post, especially if I get the chance to try the new Ninja blender model. When testing recipes for my last cookbook, I did borrow a friend’s Ninja, and the results were terrible– but it was a very old model, and I’m guessing the newer models are better. Are they comparable to the Vitamix, though? I’ll report back when I know for sure! 

Reader Feedback: Do you have a favorite blender? I hope this post is helpful if you’re shopping for a new one! I know there are some fervent BlendTec fans out there, so also feel free to chime in if you think I missed something. I always try to keep an open mind!

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Meet Megan Gilmore

Hi, I’m Megan. A former fast food junkie turned certified nutritionist consultant, trying to make healthy living as easy as possible. I believe in eating delicious whole foods on a regular basis to help naturally support the body’s detox organs— no juice fasting required. (Unless you want to!) If you make one of my healthy recipes, tag @detoxinista on Instagram or Facebook so I can see!

100 thoughts on “Vitamix vs Blendtec: Which is better?

  1. Jen @ sweetgreenkitchen.com

    Thanks for this post. I’ve been agonizing over which hi speed blender to invest in for months now! My family thinks I’m crazy for taking so much time to make this decision, but to me this is a major investment and I want to choose wisely. For the amount of money these machines cost, I’m expecting to keep my new blender forever. I was initially leaning toward the Breville Boss, but now I’m leaning more toward a Vitamix, I really prefer the look of Breville and like their pre-set buttons, but overall from the many reviews I’ve read I think that ultimately the Vitamix is the way to go. I’ve started making my own nut milks and have been using my Nutri Bullet which works just fine but isn’t very big so I always have to make my milks in two stages and as far as smoothies go I always seem to have a few extra chunks of something. I will say though for making cashew creams and dipping sauces the Nutri Bullet works great and because it’s nice and small I’ll probably continue to use it for those purposes no matter what hi speed blender I end up finally purchasing 🙂

    Reply
  2. Greta Milan

    I make unbelievable creamy smoothies evey day with my Blendtec. I’ve been using the Blendtec for ten years and I love it! When making smoothies they tell you to put the liquids in first and frozen stuff last, it’s very important that your ice is on top. I use mine several times a day, I love being able to turn grains onto flour, and I make the creamiest ice cream from frozen bananas and almonds. I do notice that running it an extra cycle or two makes all the difference in getting awesome fluffy creamy results. My husband and I think that the stuff that comes out of our blendtec is to die for!!!!

    Reply
  3. Eliz

    The Vitamix I remember seeing first at the State Fair of Texas. They’ve sold there for years but the price was always prohibitive for me. I can afford one now but I don’t think my limited usage warrants the spending.

    On the Ninja, I got one Christmas 2014. It was my Vitamix alternative. But not long after using it for a while, I found that I missed my simple Black and Decker blender, if you can believe that. The Black and Decker’s jar created a better vortex, for pulling the food toward the blades at the bottom, and thus produced smoother smoothies. The blades in the Ninja are good for show, but contact with the food is not enough to really get a smooth consistency, even with two sets of them in the jar. My boyfriend bought himself the Ninja with attachments and the smoothie cups produce a very fine consistency but the volume is so limited. After seeing that, I got a Nutri Bullet to get better volume and smoother consistency and that has worked fine for smoothies. It darn near cooked my attempt at mayo, though. It runs too hot to make that. I have used my Ninja maybe once since getting the Nutri Bullet so I’d tell anyone to pass on the Ninja. You get chewy smoothies using the Ninja and that’s not quite the point, is it? I haven’t tried mayo in the Ninja but I have my doubts.

    Reply
  4. Shari

    Thank you for your honest review! My 25+/- year old Vitamix is finally starting to give me issues with very heavy recipes and I was debating which one to go with this time. Vitamix will be my choice after reading your write up. My VM has survived two kids (I think they were about 6 & 8 when purchased) making their own combinations, my raw food classes, and green smoothies 2x for years. It has stopped on me 3x, but has come back after cooling off.

    Nutri Bullet got used once and put back in the box. It’s still in the storage shed. So disappointing after the VM. Thought I had found a good travel machine, NOT.

    Great write. Thanks for all you do and share.

    Reply
  5. Lisa

    Thanks for the review Megan. I love my Vitamix. I bought it over 12 years ago after pining (and saving) for one for a few years. I have used it daily for over 12 years and it is still a fantastic blender. So worth the money. I bought one for a employee as a special gift last summer and she is now hooked too. If mine ever dies I will not hesitate to purchase another Vitamix!

    Reply
  6. Shannon

    You may want to reverse the side-by-side pic so people don’t get confused. In the pic you show Blendtec left and Vitamix right but in the side-by-side wording it’s reverse. I know which is which because I have a Vitamix (AND LOVE IT!) so I can recognize the style of the blender by the picture alone. 🙂 Just a thought.

    Reply
  7. Janice

    My yearly $100 blender recently died, so I was in the market for a new one. I have used both the blend tec and Vitamix at a local juicery I used to work at to produce smoothies and I completely agree with your pros and cons. The blend tec is definitely louder, to the point where we had customers complaining regularly. The tamper is a great feature as well!

    I registered for a vitamix, but my wedding is still a year away and I was missing my daily smoothie. I set out to purchase another $100 blender when I stumbled upon the Harley Pasternak by Salton blender. It looks nearly identical to the vitamix but came with a price tag of $300 CDN on sale at Canadian Tire for $200. Compared to the $500 price tag of the vitamix and blendtec this seemed much more affordable.

    It was a toss up between that and the Ninja but after reading online reviews mentioning how the ninja doesn’t do well with green smoothies, which I made daily, I decided on the Harley Pasternak blender. I have been using it for a few weeks now for green smoothies, blended soups, and nut milks. I am very pleased with it and would recommend it to anyone who can’t quite justify a vitamix, but wants to invest in a great blender for daily green smoothies (or I’m sure whatever else you throw at it!)

    Ps. This is my first time commenting but I have been a huge fan for a while now. Loving your every day detox cookbook and all your content. Thank you!!

    Reply
  8. Kathy

    I appreciate your reviews. I have had my Vitamix for about 15 years and just love it. I use it almost daily and it blends beautifully. I purchased it originally when I was making some life-style changes. I picked it cause I would be getting all the fiber and more nutrients. I find more delicious recipes to use with it all the time. I don’t have any con’s cause I find the price is reasonable when on sale or with coupons. I use the smaller 32oz blender container so it does fit under my cabinets.

    Reply
  9. Martine

    I have owned 2 non-commercial VitaMix blenders over the last 20 years. I gave them a workout too. Both lasted quite a while – 10 years on average despite using them to make some pretty tough stuff several times a day when I was a raw foodist. I recently purchased a commercial Blendtec that cost a few hundred more. I bought all the different blending jars. I read reviews that said it was better and more powerful. That isn’t true. It’s not half the machine that VitaMix is. I use my on-it’s-last-legs VitaMix that is 12 years old instead because my brand new commercial BlendTec can’t do the job. Thank you for your honest review. I wish I would have realized this $560.00 ago.

    Reply
  10. Deb

    I have a Blendtec and find the key to making smooth smoothies when using kale, berries, etc, is to use the “whole juice” setting. They don’t come out “silky”, but they are thoroughly blended with no bits of leaves, etc. floating around. I admit it would nice to drink a “silky smooth” smoothie, though soups and sauces do come out silky smooth. I’ve had my Blendtec for about 7 years and the only problem I’ve had is the part in the jar where the rubber ring is and Blendtec replaced it with no problems. We don’t have much counter space and I chose the Blendtec because it fits under my counter put together. If it ever dies I would consider a Vitamix for its smooth blending if they have one that fits under my counter.

    Reply

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