28 August 2012

mr. vitamix & family

You all remember Mr. Vitamix, yes? The love affair is still very much alive and well. We blend something with the Vitamix probably four times a week, at least. He has a permanent spot on our kitchen counter and in my heart.

So many people have contacted me with questions about the Vitamix in advance of their big purchase. I wrote about the appliance over at From Scratch Club awhile ago, but here are a few more FAQs. (Note: I joined the affiliate program five months after the FSC post was published, and none of the links in that post are affiliate links.)

Do you really use it often?
Yes. I use my Vitamix much more than I used any previous blender. It just draws you into blending and juicing and pureeing.

Tell me about the weird stuff you can blend in it.
You can add so many veggies to your smoothies and not even notice it! Leafy greens, carrots, squash, broccoli, etc... it all just gets pulverized into a smooth, delicious drink. I promise. With other blenders, I couldn't imagine adding kale to a drink but this one... this one works.

Can you make fresh juice in a Vitamix?
Well, yes. You can add your fruits and veggies along with a bit of water and make what Vitamix calls a "whole food juice". Fair warning though, this is different from what an actual juicer will make because it leaves in all of the fiber and pulp. So it can be a bit grainier than actual juice. There is always the option to strain out that pulp from the juice using a coffee filter or nut milk bag. I've done that, and while it's not a bad option at all, it is kind of a pain to rinse out the nut milk bag afterwards. I don't do it often.

Can it really heat up soups and sauces?
You bet. We've only made hot things in there once or twice, because I personally think it's just as easy to make those things on the stovetop. We made a vegan alfredo sauce with cashwers that was delicious and it got steaming hot in the Vitamix. It does, however, need to run continuously for 5-10 minutes to heat something up and that's a long time for that much noise.

Speaking of noise, is it crazy loud?
It's kind of loud, about what I expected from a two-horsepower machine. Smoothies typically take a minute or so to blend, so that's not too bad. We use to blend regularly with nearby neighbors and never feel too bad about it, but I suppose it could wake a sleeping baby if their crib was nearby.

Don't you hate cleaning blenders?
I do. For most things you make in the Vitamix, you can just rinse it out to clean it or you can fill it up halfway with soapy water and run it for a minute to clean it. It's actually really easy. Maybe once a week I give it a good scrubbing or whenever I make something stickier in there.

Tell me about it's ice-crushing capabilities.
It's a beast. It crushes ice like a monster, without even a hiccup. There is a Whole Fruit Margarita recipe that calls for tequila, one whole peeled lemon, lime and orange and ton of ice and it purees up beautifully. Occasionally when you load it up with harder-to-blend things, you have to use the tamper that it comes with to push everything down into the blades and remove air bubbles. It's a big plastic stick that you shove in there, but it's too short to ever get caught in the blades.

Can you mill your own flour?
Yes, but you need the dry blade attachment, which I don't have.

Is the Vitamix worth the money?
It really is. It's a big investment for a small appliance, but it has actually changed the way I eat. I make smoothies three times as much as I used to and I'm able to pack in a ton of fruits and veggies in each one. I've had mine for nine months now and haven't regretted it a single day.

Ok, the exciting news is that I'm now a certified Vitamix Affiliate, which means I can offer you blending freaks free shipping on all Vitamix 5200 blenders (which is the one I have, and the one I would recommend for most of you). Click here to order your Vitamix with free shipping, or click anytime on that little banner in the sidebar. You are welcome. Blend away, sweethearts.

A quick note about my affiliate status: Eight months after I purchased my Vitamix, I became a Vitamix affiliate, which means that I can offer my buddies free shipping on their Vitamixes and then I snag a percentage of the sale. I did that because I sincerely, dearly, whole-heartedly love Mr. Vitamix. Ask anyone. I'm a fanatic. It's dreamy. And since I'm pretty sure I've already sold 3-4 Vitamixes based on my wild enthusiasm, I thought why not pass along the benefit to you & me. You get the free shipping, I get a few bucks and we all blend fruits and veggies happily ever after. Nothing else will change here, and I will still be just as obnoxious about the Vitamix in person as I've always been :)

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