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The Vitamix versus Blendtec Experience
Before we get started, I must say that both the Vitamix and the Blendtec are EXCELLENT kitchen tools. They are both totally worth the money and no matter which you choose, you will wonder how you ever lived without it.
That said, I personally found that I didn’t like the Vitamix as much as the Blendtec when I got the chance to really test them side-by-side. And trust me. I would have rather loved the Vitamix because I spent over 400 buckaroos of my own money on it.
When it comes to being successful in the kitchen, having good equipment can make all the difference. I spend countless hours in the kitchen every week doing recipe development and there are certain tools that I just can’t live without.
My blender is one of them.
In 2013, I saved and saved so that I could buy myself a new professional blender. I was using a cheaper blender and it just didn’t cut it any longer. So I saved up until I had enough to buy a better blender.
I did a lot of research was really torn between the Vitamix and the Blendtec. I spoke to countless people to see what their opinions were and discovered that you were either in the VM camp or the BT camp. I never found anyone who loved them both equally.
Ultimately, I decided to purchase a refurbished Vitamix (which saved me some significant dough) and after a month or so I regretted my decision. There were several things that I didn’t like about it and it made me wish I had purchased a Blendtec instead.
A couple months ago, Blendtec was nice enough to send me one of their blenders to test out in my own home. I was beyond excited, because even though I had resolved to enjoy my Vitamix, I still wasn’t thrilled with it.
I know, I know. It’s a major first world problem to complain about not liking an expensive blender.
I totally get that.
But, there were still some little things that bugged me about the VM and I’d get annoyed when I would try to make certain things with it.
Trust me. Like I said, I would have much rather preferred to love my Vitamix from the start, as I spent over $400 of my own money for that unit. It would be nice to love an investment of that cost, but alas, there were too many things about it that bugged me. Once I got the opportunity to compare them side by side, I was sold on the BT.
What I Received to Test Out
Blendtec sent me one of the refurbished Designer Series blenders and a Twister jar. The Twister jar was a total surprise, as I had no clue they would include that in the package. And boy am I ever glad they did.
I knew I would like the Blendtec, but quickly found out that I not only liked it, I LOVED it.
I have used a variety of different brands of blenders, from the very cheap to the very expensive.
The Blendtec blows them all out of the water.
DISCLOSURE: I was provided with a refurbished Designer Series blenders and a Twister jar at no charge. I was under no obligation to post a review or giveaway, nor did I receive any monetary compensation for this post. All views and opinions expressed are my own. This post contains affiliate links and/or ads. I am part of Blendtec’s affiliate program and when you make a purchase through any of these links, I earn a small commission on each sale. This has no effect on your sale price and is simply a cost of doing business for the company you are purchasing from.
What I Love About the Blendtec (the Top 7 Pros)
I did a head-to-head comparison between the Blendtec (Designer Series Certified Refurbished) and the Vitamix (Certified Reconditioned Standard Programs). Here are the top 7 things that stood out to me about the Blendtec during the challenge. I wrote it all out for you below, but for those who enjoy watching videos, may I introduce my FIRST EVER video that I’ve done for this site! 🙂
1. Blendtec Wins: Easier to get food out.
When it comes to thick things like nut butters and batters, I always felt like I was wasting a good 1/4 – 1/2 cup of product in the bottom of the Vitamix. With the Blendtec’s wide, square base, it’s easy to scrape out every last bit of whatever you’re making. Very little, if any, wasted food. That makes me happy.
2. Blendtec Wins: Easier to Clean (aka. no more cuts on my fingers.)
No matter how careful I was when I was cleaning the Vitamix, I would occasionally slice my finger open on those incredibly sharp blades. I was skeptical about Blendtec’s unique blades, which are dull and cannot cut you. But, they work amazingly well.
I know you should be able to clean both blenders with just hot water and soap and running them for a minute or so on high, but there were times when the inside of the blender needed a little scrub. Hence the reason for the sliced fingers on the Vitamix.
3. Blendtec Wins: Smoother butters, batters, milks, etc.
Speaking of Blendtec’s unique blades, like I mentioned above, I was skeptical about the blades. I’m used to sharp blender blades, so the fact that Blendtec’s are dull and can’t slice your finger open had me puzzled.
Until I actually started using it. The blade is designed to pull ingredients from the top of the pitcher and a dull blade crushes ingredients rather than slicing them. The powerful motor, paired with this unique blade gave me much smoother end results than my Vitamix.
Another key aspect of the blender’s ability to give you smooth and creamy results is the special square pitcher. They developed this design with science in mind. The ingredients don’t swirl like in a traditional round blender, they hit the sides of the square pitcher and fall back into the blade.
4. Blendtec Wins: Great assortment of pre-made cycles and speeds.
I use the six pre-programmed cycles the most, since they have something for almost everything I need from smoothies to crushed ice to batters and more. What I like most about these is there’s no guesswork. I just hit the button, let the blender do its thing and then I end up with the perfect product at the end.
The Vitamix only has three pre-made cycles, so I enjoyed the additional options that Blendtec offered me.
5. Blendtec Wins: Sleek design and stores better.
The Blendtec is smaller and more compact than the Vitamix, making it much easier to store (and fit under or in your cabinets). The Vitamix is big and bulky and it was a little trickier for me to store when not in use.
The sleek design also makes it much easier to clean. A simple wipe with a damp cloth and you’re good to go. No switches and knobs to get dirty and grimy like on the Vitamix.
6. Blendtec Wins: Longer warranty.
With Blendtec, you get a full 7 year warranty on your product (versus the 5 years with Vitamix). While I doubt that I will ever need to send mine in for service, it’s nice to know I have two extra years if needed.
7. Blendtec Wins: The Twister jar.
The Twister jar alone is enough to make me love my Blendtec. This jar is the easiest and fastest way to make ice creams, smoothies, and nut butters.
As you see in my Vanilla Cardamom Macadamia Nut Butter recipe, it took 40 SECONDS to make smooth, creamy nut butter. That’s it. In any other blender, it will take much longer for the mere fact that you have to stop and scrape, stop and scrape, stop and scrape.
Even though the Twister jar is an added expense, if you invest in a Blendtec I HIGHLY recommend that you get one. You will wonder how you lived without it!
There are definitely a lot of reasons that I love my Blendtec, but the 7 items above are the things that really stood out to me as I gave it a thorough test in my kitchen.
What I Don’t Love About the Blendtec (the 2 cons)
I have yet to find a single product that I love 100%. There is always going to be something that stands out to me and the Blendtec was no different. Here are a few things that I don’t like about this blender, but the pros far outweigh the cons, so I am still a fan of the BT.
1. Vitamix Wins: The pitcher doesn’t rock on high speeds.
The first time I used the Blendtec, I didn’t keep my hands on the pitcher and when it got up to high speed, it started to rock, which freaked me out because I was afraid it would fly off. The Vitamix stays put and doesn’t rock, allowing me to step away and do something else if needed.
It was an easy fix — I just keep my hand on top of the blender when I’m using it. It blends things so fast that it’s not like it takes up a lot of my time, but definitely something to be aware of.
2. Vitamix Wins: The lid design for the main pitcher seals better.
I’m not a big fan of the lid design for the main pitcher of the Blendtec. The middle stopper does not seal completely, so if you happen to overfill your pitcher, or your liquid is extra sloshy, you end up with a puddle on the rubber lid. Not a huge deal, but definitely something that I noticed.
Since it’s kind of hard to explain in writing, I did a quick video for you.
Update, 11/10/14: The nice folks over at Blendtec just read my review and offered some insight as to why the lid is designed the way it is. Here is what they said:
“I did notice your one complaint about the Blendtec with the pitcher lid not sealing. This is actually by design. It needs to vent, for one so the lid doesn’t blow off making soup, etc. The biggest thing, though, is the lid is actually designed so that you can pour liquid in while you’re blending without having to remove the lid. Liquid pours in right through the vents. You can get a little sloshing of liquid, but typically that happens if the jar is over-loaded.”
I did not realize that the lid was designed to allow you to pour in liquid while blending, so that definitely makes more sense now that they explained it. That is an interesting feature. I’ll have to give it a try next time I make something where this technique applies! 🙂
Noise – Blendtec vs. Vitamix
A reader pointed out that I did not cover the noise factor in here, which I had completely forgotten about.
When it comes to noise, both of these blenders are loud. And I mean L-O-U-D.
Like a jet plane landing in my kitchen.
I really could not tell any difference between the two on high speed. They’re both loud and make me feel like I need earplugs.
So, for this specific issue, there is no clear winner.
My Final Thoughts
Now, I totally get that investing in an expensive piece of kitchen equipment like this can be overwhelming. When it comes down to it, both brands of blenders are excellent and will get the job done. BUT, after having the chance to test both side-by-side, the clear winner for me is Blendtec. I ended up giving my mom my Vitamix to test side-by-side with her Blendtec and she also liked the Blendtec more. I ended up selling my Vitamix to a nice lady here in Denver whose Vitamix from the 80s had just recently died and she promised to give it a lot of love. 🙂
I encourage you to do your own research and find out what is going to best suit your needs. If you decide that Blendtec is the best fit for you, then I encourage you to check out the refurbished Blendtec models. Buying refurbished can save you a nice chunk of change, yet you still get the quality blender of your dreams. The one I received to review is a refurbished model and it is working great.
Love the video! 🙂 I definitely would have bought a Blendtec if I’d seen your post prior to buying my high power blender (I have a Vitamix). I really like that the Blendtec has straight sides, I can definitely see that that would make it easier to get food out of the container! Thanks for sharing with us!
Hi Starlene! Yes, I am rather bummed that I dropped over $400 for my Vitamix only to end up not really liking it. I will be selling it and trying to recoup a little of my money. I really was on the fence when I was researching blenders and wish I had gone with the BT off the bat. But, live and learn! 🙂
an obviously biased review. no doubt
Sassy – Actually, it’s not. If you notice in my disclosure, I was not compensated for my review. Blendtec sent me a blender to try out and compare it to the Vitamix I already owned. If I didn’t like it, then I was under no obligation to post a review or host a giveaway. If you take time to read the review and watch the video I put together, I outline every reason why I prefer the Blendtec over the Vitamix. I take product reviews VERY seriously on this site and do not review or recommend products that I don’t personally own and love. Also, if I am ever writing a sponsored review, that will be disclosed in the article very clearly. Cheers!
P.S. I would have much rather preferred to love my Vitamix from the start, as I spent over $400 of my own money for that unit. It would be nice to love an investment of that cost, but alas, there were too many things about it that bugged me. Once I got the opportunity to compare them side by side, I was sold on the BT.
Oooooh! Make me drooool! 🙁 My dream to have. I don’t know what is to be done to enter the “contest” but would surely like to be in and… win. For once in my lifetime, Iwould like to win this little beauty for me, for my health ~ which need a big kick… that would be wonderful.
Can you put me on your list, please?
Amyah – The giveaway will be going live tomorrow, so please come back and enter! 🙂
I had a Vitamix for a few years and recently switched to a Blendtec (the wildside jar) and I agree hands down with every single one of your points. 😉 One extra bonus for me is that I can grind grains without having to buy a separate jar.
Awesome Raia! Yes, I know the grain grinding is another issue for some people. I didn’t even think to cover it here since I don’t eat grains, so I appreciate you mentioning that as well!
thank you so much for this… I want a Blendtec!!!
You’re welcome Tess! I’m glad you enjoyed! 🙂
I would love to win the Blendtec!
The expensive commercial style blender is the LAST piece of equipment on my kitchen wishlist that we just haven’t saved up for. We’ve gotten by with a stick blender but we dream about the day we can have a Blendtec blender grace our counter!
I am a senior on social security, so my budget is real tight. I enjoyed reading the differences on the blenders. If I was going to buy one now I would most likely buy the blendtec. I do not care for the newer look of the vitamix. I now have a vitamix which is over 20 years old. It is still working great, it is all metal and has the spicket on the side which I love having. For me the vitamix I have was a worth while purchase. I did purchase it new.
I have an ancient refurbished vitamix too. Must have bought it in the 1980s, it has a metal container with a spigot. So I found this review puzzling. They must have really changed the design- the blades in mine are not really so sharp, they rely on speed. I’ve never had trouble getting stuff out or cutting myself, and I’m a clutz. The top is shaped so you can easily add things while mixing. The only thing I don’t like is the spigot (I just don’t use it myself) but there’s a way to plug it that I didn’t bother pursuing. It’s really easy to clean, though. No brainer for juices and smoothies, swishing under the hot water tap for a little bit does it. For something sticky like peanut butter or bread dough, just put some soap and water in and blend, that even clears the spigot. Back when I bought it, there was just the one container and blades for everything (not two separate ones). You can make juices and grind fresh flour/make bread or peanut butter
/nut butter in the same container. (Peanuts and cashews don’t require extra oil.) I can’t remember exactly but they might have had a 7 year warranty back then, if not it was the current 5 year. Think mine might outlast me, though, so the exact warranty period seems moot. They obviously don’t expect it to fall apart in 90 days like most things today. They had a good rep for repair, but I never had to test it. I think the rocket engine sound must be the same, I even bought ear protectors at one time… 🙂 – my kitchen area is tiny.
The only thing I ever regretted was not getting a vitamix sooner, even though I don’t do much in the kitchen. So no matter what brand someone settles on for such a thing, go into debt if you must. A good one really is worth the money, and refurbished from a good company is as good as new (better really since it’s been tested twice). Any gadget with a long warranty (years rather than months or 1 year) is obviously built to last so you’ll save money over the years. None of the complaints this reviewer has even about the new vitamix are impossible to work around, by the way, so don’t let that discourage you if you’re attracted to the vitamix or can get one cheaper. Check out forums dedicated to the vitamix (or any blender) and just ask people questions about what they do. What bothers this reviewer may not bother you at all once it’s sitting on your kitchen or there may be simple ways to fix what bothers you. The ones to ask are people who have had the machines for ages.
Thanks for stopping by! Like I said in the article, both the Blendtec and the Vitamix are excellent kitchen appliances and no matter which one you decide to go with, you will most like love it. That said, once I got the opportunity to test them out side by side, I found I preferred the Blendtec over the Vitamix. Which was a major bummer considering I had spent over $400 of my hard earned money on the Vitamix. And, you’re right, what bothers me about the VM may not bother others. I definitely asked around when I was initially researching them a few years ago. I spent a good 6 months on the fence trying to decide which one to buy — they are not a cheap investment, that’s for sure, but SO worth it!
They did actually change the VitaMix years ago. I think even the first model after the stainless one had blunt edges vs. sharp, like the stainless one did. I went for years to watch the demonstration at our state fair and the blunt blade and pulverizing vs. slicing was a selling point. It was a hoot watching the old guy make sawdust out of a “tuba4” and I’ll never forget them saying that you don’t buy peanut BUTTER in the store, you buy peanut MARGARINE as they were demonstrating how to make your own in seconds.
I’ve asked why they changed the blades (especially since it was a selling point), and have not gotten a consistent answer. There was some discussion about *people* not understanding that blunt vs. sharp works. Certainly the motor is strong enough that sharp works, too. The cynic in me wonders if it was to sell the extra container, but then I try to think happy thoughts and move on with my day.
I’ve had two over the years (including the stainless) and have loved them. I’m currently unhappy that my pitcher has some small cracks that allow liquids to leak – cracked from years of use and torque at the corners, I’m sure. The rubber base comes off easily for cleaning so I’ve not been too bothered.
That being said, I’ve been considering a new one. It’s hard not to when you walk by them at Costco all the time. 🙂 This review has given me something to think about, especially considering the blunt blades. Thanks, Jessica!
Interesting! Thanks for taking the time to stop by and share that! Love the peanut BUTTER comment. LOL! 🙂
My husband actually told me to buy and try both blenders (from Costco) and return the one I didn’t want. Honestly, I wasn’t crazy about either one, but ended up keeping the Vitamix (still not crazy about it!). The Blendtec blasted everything I made to its top, making a mess. As Jessica mentioned, it also tended to vibrate around on the counter, sometimes excessively. Did love the little twister jar, though. My Vitamix doesn’t seem to puree anything unless I add a good amount of liquid. Shouldn’t it be able to puree veggies without sounding like it’s going to burn itself out? Perhaps I’m doing something wrong?
Donna – I kind of wish I had done that before I spent the money on the VM! 🙂 The Twister jar rocks and is probably my favorite aspect of the blender system. As far as the noise goes, they are both SUPER loud. I live in a town home and often wonder what my neighbors think of me when I am blending things on high. 🙂
You guys are the greatest to share all of your recipes and have giveaways
hi, thanks so much for the chance ti win such a great giveaway
I think a lot of your issues with the vitamix are user error.
First of all why are you sticking your hands in your blender??? The vitamix cleans itself. All you are supposed to do is add some dish soap and warm water and blend the mixture on high for a few seconds and wash it out.
For a cloudy container you can use vinegar or baking soda. I have never stuck my hands in the blender ever!!!
Secondly. When I make nut butters and thick things I also prep a smoothie. I manage to get most of my product out using a small spatula and then use the remainder in a smoothie. Therefore no waste. But even still I never have a quarter/half a cup of product left in the bottom???
Lastly, my vitamix always makes smooth with no chunks smoothies. I suggest you go back and read the material that came with your vitamix or join a vitamix Facebook group for more tips!
Hi Liz – Thanks for stopping by! I am so glad you love your Vitamix! They are both great blenders, but based on my experience using both side-by-side, I found I much preferred the Blendtec. I find this to be pretty true across the board — you’re either a VM lover or a BT lover. I yet to find a single person who loves both brands equally. And trust me, I would have much preferred to love my Vitamix considering that I spent over $400 of my hard-earned money to purchase one. Unfortunately, it just didn’t suit my needs the way I expected it to.
I also can assure you that I know how to operate the blender and did read through all the material when I first received it. I found that the self-cleaning feature was not enough, depending on what I made. If I was making something with a lot of fat, there would be a residue that the self-cleaning feature would not get off. The only way I could get it off was to gently scrub it with a little soap and water and a non-abrasive sponge. I did also use vinegar to remove some clouding and that worked well. I never tried baking soda.
Great tip on preparing a smoothie after making your nut butters! I appreciate you sharing that. I have a very small spatula that I used and still felt I was wasting a large amount of stuff in the bottom of the pitcher.
Speaking of smoothies, mine would blend well, but not nearly as smooth as I would expect from the high-power of the Vitamix. When I tested it next to the Blendtec, I found I preferred the consistency of that one instead.
I appreciate you taking the time to stop by and share your thoughts! Have a great holiday!
Yes, I’ve made peanut butter and cashew butter in my ancient vitamix and they’ve always been very smooth. You have to tamp it down once or twice with a wooden dowel supplied with mine, to make sure it all gets into the blades. Don’t know if that’s changed in newer models, but smooth butters should be quite achievable with any high power machine. You do need to run it long enough, though. My old vitamix requires about 5 minutes.
My vitamix even beats up raspberry seeds…so smoothies are certainly smooth. By the way, directions for mine indicate that you do need to add some water to chop up veggies well. But the liquid in a smoothie recipe should be enough to make everything smooth if you’re running it the proper amount of time.
I have to say, that is one thing I love about the BT Twister jar. Nut butters are done in under 45 seconds. It’s incredible! The Twister jar alone makes the BT worth the investment, IMO. I use it every single day, sometimes more than once! Thanks for stopping by!
This is great! I love kitchen toys. 🙂
Will the Blendtec crush whole ice cubes while making a smoothie with the result being very smooth with no chunks left? I’m very glad to see this comparison. I see these blenders and hear bits about them and have wondered which is best.
Hi Brenda! Yes – In my experience, there have been no chunks of ice left if you blend it long enough. I like the smoothie setting on the BT blender and it works perfectly every time! 🙂
I don’t think the container of either is glass is it? I would really like a professional blender like these but worry about blending hot liquids (soups, coconut milk, etc) in them since they aren’t glass. Does this ever concern you? I would appreciate your thoughts on this!
Hi Debra – I am not sure if they make any glass blender pitchers anymore. I know my mom has an old, old, old KitchenAid that is made of glass (it’s SUPER old). I don’t mix hot things in my blenders, so I am not concerned with that. Supposedly the material they make the pitchers form (both Blendtec and Vitamix) are safe for high temps, but I’m with you — I am not a fan of heating up plastics, no matter what type they are.
The difference I see is personal preference. There’s not mention of bad performance on either blender Just choices on weather you’d prefer to take the little extra time to clean your machine or to get food from it. These things are trivial. I think both are awesome blenders and you do get your moneys worth. Top products from both companies.
Hi Barb – Thanks for stopping by! If you notice in the article above, you’ll see in the very first sentence of this post I mention that both are excellent kitchen tools. Yes, it does come down to personal preference when choosing what works best for your needs. Since the bulk of my professional (and personal) career resides in the kitchen, I need kitchen tools that work best for my needs. I really wish I had loved the Vitamix right off the bat because I paid over $400 for it out of pocket!