A Complete Juicer Buying Guide of 2020
Deciding to embark on a juice journey is the easy part. Buying a juicer, on the other hand, can be quite a journey in itself. There are just so many juicers on the market and so many of them are great. How do you choose? How do you know what is the best juicer for you?
Before purchasing your juicer, whether it’s your first one or you are looking for an upgrade, you must learn about:
- Why to Juice?
- What to Look for In a Juicer?
- Different types of Juicers and their Pros & Cons
- Quick Tips to help you to choose your juicer
Perhaps one of the most important investments that you have made for your health is to decide and buy a good juicer. But before you start your juicer hunting journey I think it will be really a wise move to know why you want to buy a juicer?
Part I: Why To Juice?
There are three main reasons why you should consider incorporating fresh juice, especially vegetable juice, into your lifestyle.
Fresh juice is the 15 minute nutrient express to health:
Many of us have impaired digestion which reduces our body's ability to absorb nutrients from vegetables. Fresh juices go directly into your bloodstream and are therefore considered a 15 minute nutrient express to health. Unfortunately store bought juices contain virtually no nutrients due to the pasteurization process.
Juicing lets you add a wide variety of fruit and vegetables to your diet:
Many of us eat the same vegetables and fruits every day or worse, don't even eat any on a regular basis! With juicing, you can enjoy a wide variety of vegetables that you don't enjoy eating whole. Juicing is also the perfect way to consume the recommended daily serving of vegetables.
Fresh juice offers incredible health benefits:
After regularly consuming freshly pressed vegetable juices, which are highly alkalizing, you will experience improved energy levels, digestion and mental clarity, clearer skin, and an overall sense of well being.
Part II: What To Look For In A Juicer?
The most important features that you should look for in your juicer are :
How Much Easy To Use?
Pick a juicer that is known for being easy to use and easy to clean. Truth is, no juicers are easy to clean, but some are definitely easier to clean than others. If the parts can go in a dishwasher, that’s a plus. If your juicer is easy to put back together after washing, that’s another plus.
Value For Money:
You get what you pay for when it comes to juicers. Less expensive juicers tend to yield less juice which will actually cost you more in the long run since you’ll have to buy more produce to get enough juice into your glass.
On the other hand, you don’t need to go out and spend an arm and a leg for a top-of-the-line juicer. For most of us, something in the middle around $100 to $150 is just about right.
High Juice Yield, Dry Pulp!
Efficiency is key. An efficient juicer produces drier pulp which means that most of the juice (and all its nutrients and enzymes) have been squeezed out for you to drink.
If your pulp is wet and heavy then the juicer is not doing its job well. You can always re-juice your pulp by running it through the juicer again, but a good quality juicer will save you this added step.
Time You Can Spend On Juicing
This is one of those questions that most people typically don't even think to ask...until they notice just how much time goes into juicing on a daily basis.
Truth is - juicing can be time-consuming and this is a consideration you should take into account before purchasing a juicer.
If you have less than 15 minutes to prep, juice, and cleaning centrifugal juicers operate quickly and are easy to clean.
But for masticating and triturating or hydraulic press juicers we wouldn't recommend them unless you have at least half an hour to devote to juicing and you're willing to put in the extra time for the highest quality juice.
What Will You Be Juicing?
Most of the best juicers juice everything. Triturating - or twin gear - juicers are particularly great for handling a wide variety of fruits and veggies.
These juicers are powerful, using twin gears which rotate inwards and interlock, crushing all produce that comes between them into a powerful pulp.
These are juicers that can easily handle even the most difficult parts of produce, such as guava seeds, watermelon rinds, and pineapple cores.
However - if you're mostly planning on juicing a pretty narrow range of fruits and veggies, such a powerful juicer might be overkill.
Before buying a juicer, it's a great idea to first determine the kinds of juice you'll want to make. Will you be juicing mostly soft fruits?
Have you fallen in love with green juice and mainly plan to juice leafy greens? The best juicers for leafy greens are either manual juicers (most affordable) or masticating juicers.
Deciding what you plan on juicing is an important step in deciding your juicer.
How Soon Will You Drink The Juice You Make?
This sounds like a silly question, but it's a very pertinent one in deciding which juicer to buy.
Not all juicers are made equal, at least in terms of how well they preserve the nutrients found in fresh produce.
Most of the centrifugal juicers produce some heat and friction when juicing which cause oxidation in the juicing process itself and compromise the freshness of the juice. Juices made with centrifugal juicers really should be consumed immediately.
If you know you can drink the juice you make immediately every time you juice - centrifugal juicers are an easy-to-use and easy-to-clean juicer type that might work really well for you.
On the other hand, if you want to juice a lot on a free day and store fresh juice for on-the-go drinking, you'll do better with a masticating (single gear) or triturating (twin gear) juicer. Both are "cold press", slow juicers that won't damage your juice quality with heat.
Juices made with masticating juicers have a higher shelf life and can be stored for up to 48 hours. With some masticating juicers - i.e. most of the Omega models - the juice can be stored up to 72 hours.
Juices made with twin gear - or triturating - juicers are the highest quality and can retain their nutrient potency for up to 72 hours after juicing.
These juicers take longer to juice and a bit longer to clean up than centrifugal juicers, but in terms of time saved from storing juices...these are a better value.
How Important Is Quality?
Of course quality is important...but how much does it matter to you?
Is it worth the extra time and money investment? The various juicer types range in terms of the quality of juice produced.
Centrifugal juicers, as mentioned above, introduce oxidation in the juicing process. The juice can come out foamy and even a bit warm from the heat produced by the motor.
The lower-end centrifugal juicers also produce pulp that is more moist than the pulp produced by masticating (single gear) or triturating (twin gear) juicers, meaning you're not getting all the juice out of the produce you're using.
At the same time, these juicers tend to more widely available (found in most department stores), more affordable, and really convenient (fast juicing, fast clean-up). If you also like to add the pulp back into your juice, then the pulp issue isn't much of an issue.
Masticating (single gear) and triturating (twin gear) juicers, on the other hand, produce a higher juice quality and higher juice yield, but they also take longer.
Masticating juicers don't take so much longer to clean up, but the triturating juicers tend to have more parts and can take about double the amount of time to clean as a centrifugal juicer would take.
These juicers are also slow in the juicing process. Yes, they will extract pretty much every drop of juice from the produce - leaving very dry pulp behind - but they do take their sweet time to do so.
Before buying a juicer, it's good to consider what is most important to you. There's no right answer - it's just a matter of preference.
If you really can not compromise on juice quality, juice yield, and dry pulp - then go for the masticating or triturating juicers.
On the other hand, if you're short on time, then go for the juicer you know you'll actually use. Ultimately, it doesn't matter how awesome your juicer is or how amazing the quality of the juice it produces, if you don't have the time to use it. The most important thing is that you juice. Go for the juicer that suits you.
Another detail is durability. How long are you planning to keep your juicer? Would you like a permanent kitchen fixture or do you plan on upgrading to a better model soon?
Some juicers come with longer warranties than others. Omega juicers tend to have 10 to 15 year warranties. Champion juicers usually come with about the same insurance.
A good rule of thumb in assessing durability is, of course, the warranty on the machine as well as whether there is a motor or not.
Centrifugal juicers have motors which run at high speeds and heat up the machine, contributing to its wear and tear.
Slower juicers - such as the masticating or triturating juicers - don't produce heat and tend to age more slowly and gracefully.
Some juicers collect the pulp in an internal basket while others eject the pulp outside of the machine into a bowl or a pulp collector that is specifically sized for the juicer.
We recommend purchasing a juicer that ejects the pulp externally– this allows you to make larger quantities of juice without having to take extra time to stop your juicer, open it up, and empty the basket
Having multiple speeds allows you to extract the most juice out of your produce.
Slow speeds ar good for juicing soft fruits, like grapes, and the high speed is better for firmer vegetables, like carrots and cucumbers.
Size Of The Feeder Tube?
Cut your juicing time down by selecting a juicer with a wide feeder tube so most whole fruits and vegetables easily fit.
Storage & Cord Length
Look for a model with a long cord to give you greater flexibility in where it can be placed on your counters when juicing. If you plan to store your juicer in your cabinets, make sure you select one that fits as they tend to take up room. A compact model is good for cabinet storage..
Look for a model that has a juice container specifically sized for the juicer and with a cover that fits over the spout. Juicing can be messy but this will help eliminate the splashes.
When do you juice? Do you live with other people who are sensitive to noise? Juicers with motors, such as centrifugal machines, tend to be on the noisier end.
Masticating and triturating juicers are also rather silent. If you juice in the early mornings (or late at night), this might be a factor to consider.
Types of Juicers
1. Centrifugal Juicer
Centrifugal Juicers are the most popular and generally the most affordable type of juicer. In fact, most juicers available in department stores are centrifugal juice machines, but beware of machines with warranties of less than one year.
Centrifugal juicers are great at juicing most any fruit or vegetable and get the job done very easily and quickly.
However, centrifugal juicers have a more difficult time effectively extracting high yields of juice from grassed and leafy foods like wheatgrass, spinach, lettuce, parsley and other greens and herbs.
Centrifugal juicers will extract some juice from these greens, but far less than single or twin gear juicers.
How they work?
Some Centrifugal juicers are available with large feeding chutes that allow whole foods to be juiced without the need to cut and prepare food into smaller pieces. Most centrifugal juicers, however have oval shaped feeding chutes that are large enough for a half or at least a quarter of an apple.
Centrifugal type juicers first grate the fruit or vegetable into a pulp, and then uses centrifugal force to push the pulp against a strainer screen by spinning it at a very high RPM.
- Anyone new to juicing
- Making juices quickly
- Budget shoppers
The Pros & Cons
- Easy to use
- Juices quickly
- Reduces food preparation time as many accept larger fruit and vegetable pieces
- Depending on brand/model, juice may get foamy and thus oxidize more rapidly
- The juice from centrifugal juicer should be consumed right away and can't be effectively stored for any length of time without loss of nutritional value
- Some leafy greens can be a little harder to juice
- Cannot juice wheatgrass, sprouts or nuts
- Yields less juice (produces a wet pulp)
- Noisy because of griding and cutting actions
Price Range for Centrifugal Juicer: $45 – $300+
Best Selling Centrifugal Juicers
Breville BJE200XL Compact Juice Fountain 700-Watt Juice Extractor
Breville JE98XL Juice Fountain Plus 850-Watt Juice Extractor
Breville 800JEXL Juice Fountain Elite 1000-Watt Juice Extractor
2. Masticating Juicer/Single Gear Juicer/Cold Press Juicer:
Masticating Juicers use a single gear or auger that literally chews fruit and vegetable fibers and breaks up the plant cells, resulting in more fiber, enzymes, vitamins and trace minerals.
Masticating juicers are generally more efficient than Centrifugal juicers because they can extract more juice from the same amount of food (i.e. the pulp comes out drier).
Masticating juicers are very capable at juicing virtually any fruit and vegetable, and single gear juicers will also extract juice from leaves and grasses, like wheatgrass, spinach, lettuce, parsley, and other leafy greens and herbs.
Another benefit of masticating juicers is that they operate at slower speeds (RPMs) than centrifugal juicers, resulting in less foam and heat, which means more nutrition in your glass.
The low speed also increases the shelf life of the juice so that you can generally store your juicer for a few days.
Masticating juicers are also more versatile than centrifugal juicers because, in addition to extracting juices, these juicers also homogenize foods to make baby foods, pates, sauces, nut butters, banana ice creams and fruit sorbets.
Some of these juicers can even extrude pasta and make bread sticks and rice cakes!
How They Work?
Masticating juicers “chew,” or masticate, your produce by grinding (like teeth) and then squeezing the juice out
- People with a moderate-high budget for a juicer
- Advanced juicers who juice frequently
The Pros & Cons
- High juice yield and less pulp
- Generates less foam so juices oxidize slower
- Juice lasts longer with enzyme integrity keeping for up to 48 hours
- Lower speed means less heat is generated, preserving more nutrients and enzymes
- Minimal juice separation and foaming
- Can juice most fruits and vegetables including wheatgrass, cranberries and even nuts
- Versatile, depending on model and brand, some can be used to make body foods, paste, sauces, nut butters, banana ice creams and fruit sorbets
- Pressing action is quiet
- Usually have many parts to clean than a Centrifugal Juicer
- Longer prep time - shoots tend to be smaller requiring cutting fruit and vegetables into smaller pieces
- More costly than Centrifugal Juicers
Price Range for Masticating Juicer: About $200 – $400+
Best Selling Masticating Juicers
Omega J8006 Nutrition Center Juicer
Omega VRT350 Heavy Duty Dual-Stage Vertical Single Auger Low Speed Juicer
Hurom HU-100 Masticating Slow Juicer
3. Twin Gear Juicer / Triturating Juicer:
Twin-Gear (Triturating) Juicers are the most expensive type of juicers, but they offer the most benefits. Twin gear juicers turn at even slower speeds (RPMs), resulting in even less oxidation from foam and less destruction of nutrients from heat.
The low speeds also decrease the aeration and oxidation of the juicer, meaning you can refrigerate and store your juice for a few days.
Twin gear juicers are the most efficient type of juicer available and can extract higher yields of juice from fruits, vegetables, wheatgrass, pine needles, spinach, and other greens and herbs.
The pulp that comes out of twin gear juicers is the driest of all the types of juicers. These juicers extract as much juice from wheatgrass as the wheatgrass-only type of juicers.
Twin gear juicers operate by pressing food between two interlocking roller gears. This juicing process yields a larger volume of juice.
The high pressure squeezing force of the twin gears breaks open tough cell walls and releases more enzymes, vitamins and trace minerals.
How They Work?
Twin gear juicers operate by pressing food between two interlocking roller gears.
This juicing process yields a larger volume of juice.
The high pressure squeezing force of the twin gears breaks open tough cell walls and releases more enzymes, vitamins and trace minerals.
If you have the funds and are willing to splurge
Someone who wants a top-of-the-line juicer
People who frequently drink a large quantity of juice
- Low oxidation of the juice to preserve optimum nutritional value
- Efficient at juicing greens
- Can be used for other functions besides juice, depending on brand and model
- More parts to clean and a little trickier to put back together after cleaning
- Requires some strength to juice firmer produce
Price Range for Twin Gear Juicer: About $400 – $2000+
Best Selling Twin Gear Juicers
Tribest Green Star Elite GSE-5000 Jumbo Twin Gear Juice Extractor
Tribest Green Star GS-3000 Deluxe Twin Gear Juice Extractor
Super Angel All Stainless Steel Twin Gear Juicer- 5500
4. Wheatgrass Juicer:
Wheatgrass Juicers are made exclusively for extracting the juice from wheatgrass and other leafy greens, as well as some soft fruits like grapes. Wheatgrass juicers are not made for extracting juice from vegetables and most fruits. Wheatgrass juicers are available in both electric and manual models.
(Note: all of the masticating (except Champion) and twin gear juicers are capable of extracting juice from wheatgrass.
A Quick Cheat Sheet to decide which Juicer is BEST for You!
Purchase a Centrifugal Juicer if:
- You are new to juicing
- You are on a tight budget
- You are busy and don't want to spend a lot of time in juicing
- You can consume the juices right away as juice from a centrifugal juicer can't be effectively stored for any length of time without loss of nutritional value
- You don't include wheatgrass, sprouts or nuts in your daily juice
- You prefer to juice almost all types of fruits and hard vegetables like carrot, beet root, cucumber, lettuce and celery sticks
- You don't include wide varieties of green leafy vegetables as centrifugal juicers can't produce enough juices from leafy greens like masticating or twin gear juicers do
Purchase a Masticating Juicer if:
- You juice often
- You are able to spend a bit more money as masticating juicers are quite expensive than centrifugal juicers
- You are looking for high juice yield and less pulp
- You want the juice to last longer with enzyme integrity; you can easily keep it for up to 48 hours
- You need to operate in a quiet environment
- You are looking for versatile equipment; can be used to make baby foods, paste, sauces, nut butters, banana ice creams and fruit sorbets
Purchase a Twin Gear Juicer if:
- You are a committed juicer
- You are looking for a high end, top-of-the-line juicer and have the budget for it
- You need a juicer which is efficient in juicing greens
- You are looking low oxidation of the juice to preserve optimum nutritional value
- You are ok with spending enough time as it is a little bit trickier to clean and put back together after cleaning
- You are looking for a juicer with the highest quality and can retain their nutrient potency for up to 72 hours after juicing
- You want to extract higher yields of juice from fruits, vegetables, wheatgrass, pine needles, spinach and other greens and herbs
- You want to extract as much juice from wheatgrass as the wheatgrass-only type of juicers