Types of Blenders
Not all blenders are created equal—if they were, manufacturers wouldn't make as many different blenders as they do! The key to finding the perfect blender for you is to start with the blender itself. Do you need something for your chef or your bartender? Will the blender primarily reside in the back or front of the house? Are you blending frequently all day? Consider your needs first, then read on to learn more about different types of blenders you'll find on the market.
Types of Blender Containers
Commercial blenders often come with a blender container made from one of these three different types of materials: stainless steel, glass, and polycarbonate (though many manufacturers also sell proprietary blender containers made from alternate materials) Many chefs opt to buy additional blender containers, either to ease efficiency in the kitchen or to utilize a different material for specific tasks. Most blender containers will have graduated measurements on them as well to make it easier for you to measure recipes and maintain drink consistency. There's really no right or wrong choice when it comes to blender containers—it's highly dependent on your personal preferences. Read on to learn more.
Commercial Blender Buying Considerations
When it comes to buying a blender, you really want to do your research first. Picking a blender for your restaurant is much more than deciding what horsepower you need. Each manufacturer specializes in a specific design of blender container, control panel and much more. Before taking the plunge with your purchase, be sure to consider every feature there is to get the best blender for you.
- Container Shape
- Many manufacturers tout the shape of their blender container as a real value proposition, and here's why. Container design greatly affects how well (or not) your materials will blend. Some chefs prefer the wider, more square design of a Waring or Blendtec blender because the container can efficiently process large chunks of ingredients effectively. All in all it really goes back to the types of food or beverages you're blending to determine which type of blender will work best for you.
- Before deciding on any blender for your front of house, consider the noise. While more horsepower and larger capacity blender containers are often your first considerations, don't neglect your customer. In the front of house, the sound of a blender going on and off can prove jarring to customer conversations. Look for blenders with quieter motors or even sound-dampening encasements (like those you see in juice or coffee shops who run multiple blenders at a time) which could help your front of house ambiance.
- It may seem obvious, but one of the biggest factors chefs fail to consider when purchasing a blender is the actual size of its container. Maybe it's because we're conditioned to pay close attention to horsepower, blade construction and electronic features. The size of your container is the difference between being able to blend two to three drinks in a single batch, or getting 1 ½ beverages per blend. Sizing is key to an efficient bar that produces minimal waste! Get a container that's large enough to make appropriately-sized beverages for your restaurant. That said, take care not to purchase a container that's too large, because a bulky container might be less efficient for you, and you might be throwing away extra product.
- Stackable Blender Containers
- We rarely hear that chefs grapple with having too much space in the kitchen. On the contrary, the need to be smart about storage is always a factor in both the front and back of the house. If you're a bustling bar or coffee shop consistently making mixed beverages, chances are you will have more than one blender container on hand (we hope). Having multiple blender containers ensures you have an efficient rotation going so you're getting drinks out as quickly as possible. But where do you store those extra blender containers? Stackable options help you save storage space, and no—not all blender containers can be stacked!
- Blender Power
- There's a reason you purchase a commercial-grade blender for a large foodservice operation—more power. These blenders are literally built to tackle tough tasks every day, throughout the day. Still, a common misconception with blenders is that you'll always need one with the highest horsepower for added durability and a longer life. Not true! Depending on what you use your blender for, and how well you care for it, means you could spare yourself the expensive price tag of more horsepower by opting for a blender suited to your needs.
- Types of Controls
- Undeniably, the controls on a blender are where all the bells and whistles really come out. In many cases you'll find that a simple on/off switch is all you'll need to get the job done. However, others with specific drink recipes or culinary needs will require a more sophisticated setup that gives you more control. Read on to learn more about the types of controls found on blenders.
- Toggle/Paddle Switches and dials
At the most basic level, some blenders have a simple paddle switch that turns the equipment on and off. Some blenders also feature a dial that enables the chef to slowly increase the speed of the blend to achieve a desired consistency.
- Electronic Display
Flat, electronic membranes (like the one found on many Waring models) makes cleaning a breeze because there are no small openings for liquid or other food particles to become stuck. Electronic displays are also easy-to-read, intuitive, and feature one-touch blending capabilities.
- Programmable and Timer Options
Make sure the last blended drink of the night tastes the same as the first! Some blenders come with programmable options or a dial timer to enable automatic shutoffs. Timers are ideal when you want the precision in blending consistent drinks. For even greater control, opt for electronic and programmable options that enables you to preset multiple recipes for a variety of beverages. With programmed blender times, you know your customers are getting the same drink they know and love, no matter who is behind the bar.
- Food Blenders versus Food Processors
- Many prefer food blenders to food processors when it comes to emulsifying liquids and large food product. Blenders are ideal for turning vegetables and other items into pulverized, silky smooth sauces.
Cleaning Your Commercial Blender
Like most restaurant equipment in your kitchen, keeping your blender clean is the best way to keep it running a long time. During a shift you'll (hopefully) be regularly rinsing your blender container between blends to preserve the integrity of your beverages/food. But at the end of the shift, be sure that you thoroughly clean the blade assembly, jar pad (some manufacturers even make them removable), and immersion blender shaft (removable shafts ensure you don't get the motor wet while cleaning).
Commercial Food and Bar Blender Parts
Anyone who works in foodservice knows that kitchen equipment can take a beating. Not only are cooks and bartenders less-than-careful, but it's only a matter of time before those small blender accessories (like a gasket) are gone forever. Thankfully manufacturers have your back, because practically every part on your blender is replaceable. At Tundra Restaurant Supply, we carry over 400 blender parts, from blade assemblies to pads, lids and switches—we've got you covered.