Squeezing Out Value: A Juicer’s Buying Guide

What is a Juicer?

uicers are a treat for kitchens everywhere. When you want fresh fruit or vegetable juices, the best way to ensure freshness is to squeeze it yourself. For just a little extra effort, you can create refreshing and tasty drinks from your local produce section. Juicers come in many varieties and cost ranges. There are so many though that it can be difficult to know exactly what look for. Some juicers can be very expensive and you should know if they are worth your hard earned money. Here we cover the most important points about juicers in the modern marketplace.

Juicers work by inserting the item to be juiced into a tube where blades will get work by crushing and squeezing the innards of the fruit. As there are many different fruits and vegetables in the world, the diverse nature of feeding tubes can change depending on the aim of the juicer. The size of the feeding tube is often advertised on the box itself, if not there then see product specification and you will find it quickly. Feeding tubes usually range between three and one and a half inches across. The three inch feeding tubes are great and can accommodate almost any fruit. As the tube size goes down though, you may find yourself unable to use certain foods. At the very least, you will have to do extra work to cut them down to sizes that fit inside the feeding tube.

Our Picks for Best Juicers

JUICER

KEY FEATURE

RATINGS

Omega-J8006

Our top pick! A masticating juicer that does it all.

(4.6 / 5)

hurom-slow-juicer

The ultimate slow juicer to get the most juice and preserve nutrients

(4.0 / 5)

Breville

High Power, Simple and Affordable

(4.5 / 5)

Hamilton-Beach-67608

Starter Juicer, Simple to use and Clean, comes with a big feeding tube.

(4.2 / 5)

cuisinart

The best citrus juicer for all citrus fruits.

(4.3 / 5)

Types of Juicers

types-of-juicers

There are three main varieties of juicer on the market today: masticating, centrifugal, and citrus. These three juicers have distinct purposes and uses. Some more suitable for certain food types versus others. In out juicer reviews we identify the best juicer and what types of fruits and vegetable they are suitable for.

Masticating Juicer: These juicers utilize a horizontal design; the mouthpiece for the juice can be hung over a container easily. Juice made with this kind of juicer is often slowly squeezed and have a low oxidation rate. It will only last a few days, but it is a day or two more than you would not have had without this. These juicers often go for a high price though. The amount of utility they carry raises the price of masticating juicer up beyond $200.

Centrifugal Juicer: These juicers are characterized by an upright, centralized design where foods are inserted at the top, they are juiced in the middle, and the juice is pumped out near the bottom. These blenders often use high speed motors to quickly juice, but some centrifugal, slow juicer models are making their way onto the market. Oxidation rates are higher with these juicers, but they are less expensive. You can get a centrifugal juicer easily for under $200.

Citrus Juicer: They are the cheapest and most common juicers. Citrus juicers are intended for people who just want to make morning beverages from oranges, grapefruits, and other citrus fruits. These juicers utilize a plastic cone on the top that spins around when activated. The idea is to cut the fruit open and put the meat side down onto the cone. When it spins it extracts the pulp and juice. Often very vertical and similar to the centrifugal juicers, these juicers can run anywhere between $15 and $100. Only very high end citrus juicer will go farther than that upper limit.

Advantages of Using a Juicer

A juicer ensures natural, organic juice drinks with every use. A common worry is what kind of things companies are putting into their “natural” products. Owning a juicer allows you complete vertical control over the content of the juice you drink. If you grow your own fruits, then your control over the process is complete. A juicer allow 100% clarity in the process so you know you are drinking the best juice available. You cannot get this through any other method if you are in to juicing.

There is no other real way to get juice by yourself. Manual juicing methods are time consuming and wasteful. Using your hands to squeeze out juice will take a very long time and will leave a large amount of juice trapped in the pulp. You have no way to tear apart the pulp clinging to the skin where ounces of juice hide. A juicer is effectively a blender built to collect all the liquid and discard the remainder. There is no other product on the market that quite fills this role.

With a juicer, you do not have to rely on what the grocer has in stock. Yes, the store will always have orange juice, lemon juice, and grapefruit juice, but can you guarantee that they carry juices from rare or green plants? A juicer puts you in control of the selection process. Any and all things can be used and you can make any quantity. You are only restricted by how much and which fruits and vegetable you have to juice.

How to Select a Juicer

You must answer these three question in order to select a juicer.

What do you need out of a juicer? Are you a hardcore dietitian looking to maximize nutrient intake? Do you just want some fresh OJ in the morning? There are juicers for all walks of life. If you are a casual juicer, getting a citrus juicer may be the best one. Cheap and easy to use, they will easily get you what you are after. If you want to experiment with vegetables juices and non-traditional juicing then you may want to upgrade. This will mean spending a bit more money, but it will be worth it in the end.

What qualities are you looking for in the machine itself? Juicers have many accessories and they may make or break a deal for you. If you are a family person who has a lot of kids and what to make a lot of fresh juice, you may want a quiet juicer with a lot of capacity. If you are not that concerned with caring for a pricey machine, you want a machine that has low maintenance and a long warranty.

What kind of budget are you on? Juicers have a wide variety of price that is often tied to the kind of juicer it is. Above we covered the three main types of juicers. You should spend some time on that, research juicers of the variety you like, and find out exactly how much you will have to spend. With juicers, you certainly do not want to spend more than you are using it for. If you just want to make orange juicer, a masticating juicer may not be for you. Citrus juicers are affordable and do a good job. However, if you are dying to turn those cucumbers you grew into a fresh juicer you may want to look into centrifugal or masticating juicer, as a citrus juicer cannot handle most green vegetables. From there, it is a question of how much you want to spend.

Top Product Reviews: Best Juicer to buy

In this section you will find the best juicer reviews across the various types of juicers.

Omega-J8006

The Good
This juicer can do it all. It serves as a blender, a juicer, a masticator, and a grinder. It can make delicious spreads from berries or nuts. It makes pasta, coffee grounds, salsa, baby food, and much more. Its juicer function uses a two-step process that crushes the fruit and then squeezes all the juice out of it. This juicer is very efficient and slow juices the fruit. The process is longer than usual, but the 80 rpms minimize the amount of air exposure and ensure a great look and taste for your juice. It will also last three or four days after being made, this is great compared to the one or two day durations of other juicers.

The Bad
The feeding tube is very small. The amount of things this machine allows you to do is sometimes limited by this. If you want to put the machine to its fullest purpose, you will have to chop up fruits and vegetables to fit down the narrow tube. If you want to make a lot of juice, that can mean a lot of extra cutting and dicing on your end. Compounded by the slow juicing time, this juicer is a large amount slower than other juicers. It also comes with a fairly high price tag that might be out of budget.

The Verdict
The J8006 is a world class machine. Capable of a wide variety of functions, this is the product for the juicing veteran. The price limit and breadth of choices may be too much for people who are not avid juicers. However, if you love to experiment with flavors, textures, and colors in your food you will find a great value in this machine. There are certainly a few issues, the feeding tube being the large one. Any problems it has are overshadowed by its sheer strength and versatility.

hurom-slow-juicer

The Good
This slow juicer is extremely efficient in every way. The 150W motor lightens the energy required and the slow juicing process ensures that you are getting all the juice you can with as many vitamins and enzymes as possible. The slow juicer uses a two-step process with a vertical auger design. Breaking up the food and then squeezing the fruit for all it is worth against a grate. This results in a lot of juice and very dry pulp. The machine is easy to break down and clean. The vertical design comes apart easily and is dishwasher safe. The Hurom Slow Juicer is a well-designed product.

The Bad
This machine takes its time. This slow juicer verges on dead slow at times. The same process that creates a great juice also takes quite some time in comparison to other juices. If you are looking for a fast juicer, you may want to steer clear. These time issues are compounded by a very narrow feeding tube. Any large fruits or vegetables you want to juice must be cut up first, and finely cut up. The vertical auger design leaves it open to getting jammed by larger pieces. The slow speed does not help either. This is at the upper end of the price range for consumer juicers.

The Verdict
This machine has a high price tag because it is a great product, if you do not mind waiting. The biggest issue is the long time required to make juice. However, it says that in the name and sells itself as a slow juicer that prioritizes results, not the means. If you bought this, it is likely that you wanted this kind of juicer. If you want something fast, you will want to look into a different product. If you are a health nut who wants to complement a healthy diet with different delicious juices and are willing to wait for it, this is a great product for you.

Breville

The Good
This small juicer contains a very effective 750W motor. It has no problem chewing up vegetables and fruits that are inserted and can take apart an entire piece of produce in a matter of seconds. This powerful motor is held inside an easy to move lightweight body that stands a little less than ten inches tall. The large motor is easily managed by the small case. The centrifugal design of this juicer means that it will not bounce around when in use. It is very simple to put together and activate right out of the box. Simplicity is the keyword here. It does not have a lot of features and is very simple to use.

The Bad
The strong motor is very loud in comparison to other juicers. Loud enough to be an annoyance, you may be put off by the raw noise of the motor at work. The lightweight plastic casing feels cheap at times and takes away from the overall aesthetic of the product. This does not affect the juicing itself, but it can look a little bit tacky to those looking for stainless steel juicers. This juicer does not expel waste and the remains of the fruit lie below the blades on a stainless steel grate. They supply a cleaning brush, but its design requires you to clean it out after every use. The remains quickly build up and can hamper blade movement over time. It only has on or off as activation choices, no variable blade speed.

The Verdict
The Breville Compact is priced low and has a strong performance. It lacks almost all of the bells and whistles of more expensive models, but it fulfills its purpose to perfection. This is a juicer, clear and simple. It will not muffle itself, it needs to be cleaned often, and it will not change the quality of its juice depending on the food inserted. It will ensure that the juice it makes is very clean and that it strips all of the juice possible out of the husk. This is a great low level juicer for those who have not had one before. If you are looking for the next advanced model of juicer, you may want to look for something else.

Hamilton-Beach-67608

The Good 

This juicer makes good use of the title Big Mouth. The 3 inch feeding tube can tackle any fruit that comes its way and the 800W motor ensures that the juice is clear and done quickly. It is easy to assemble right out of the box and it checks itself for you. A safety feature includes a self-check where the machine will not activate if assembled improperly. The juicer and the pulp are quickly and cleanly separated so disposal is easy and all plastic containers are dishwasher safe. It sells for an affordable retail price of around $60.

The Bad

This is one big juicer. It towers over most other juicers at 16 inches tall. Moreover, it is 13 inches by 9 inches. Add the fact that this weighs in at 10 pounds, that is a huge juicer. Those with small counters may find it difficult giving up almost an entire foot of counter space for a juicer. The weight also makes it annoying to stow away and take out. The motor has no suppression and is very noisy when in use. If anyone is doing anything concentration intensive, they should leave the house when this thing gets going. The pulp container in the back is roomy and handy, but you will have to clean it often. The pulp can dry out and stick to the container with almost concrete-like tenacity if left alone and dirty. This means you should clean it after every use.

The Verdict 

This juicer has a few issues, but they are all tied to the fact that this is a great juicer made on a budget. The size is the most glaring issue, but it does a really effective job as a juicer despite this. That loud 800W motor still creates good pulp and juice separation despite the noise. If you are looking for a high quality juicer, you may want to look at some of the options listed above and be prepare to spend more cash. If you are new to juicing or want a simple juicer on a tight budget, this is your best bet.

cuisinart

The Good
This low priced model has everything a casual citrus juicer could want. Those looking for some fresh orange juice in the morning will be very pleased with this juicer. This juicer specializes in citrus fruits. The blending cone has a Final Spin feature that ensures every last drop is taken from the fruit and put into your cup. It stands around one foot tall and about four pounds in weight. This modest build makes it easy to stow away for later use. This juicer also has a good looking finish that comes in different colors and an optional chrome finish if stainless steel is not quite your style.

The Bad
The motor for this juicer is severely lacking. With only 25W of power, it can push through citrus fruits, but struggles with anything else. Leaning on the fruit too much when you put it on the blending cone can actually slow the juicer down through that pressure alone. It is a relatively weak motor. Even if it did have the power to cut through tougher fruits, it is not designed for them. The lack of a standard feeding tube means that only citrus fruits are game here. Bananas, strawberries, blueberries, cucumbers, zucchini, apples, and many more other fruits are out of the consideration due to its design.

The Verdict
You get what you pay for with this juicer. The low price reflects in the quality of the product. It feels well made, but is severely lacking in hardware and accessories. If you just want to make citrus juices you will be more than happy with this product. If you aspire to juice many kinds of foods you may come up short. The lack of options and the weak motor are the huge weak points in this product. Everything else works well and will keep you happy as long as you are content with citrus fruits.