5 Ways Your Blender Can Save You Time in the Kitchen
It's not just for smoothies, folks.
I’ve long coveted a Vitamix blender, and finally scored one over the holidays. And while my smoothie game is on point now, I needed to find some other uses for my new appliance to justify the hefty price tag. I’ve been experimenting in the kitchen and realized that having a high-performance blender can be completely life-changing, but only if you know how to maximize its potential. No matter what kind of high-speed blender you have, read on to learn how it can help you make so much more than breakfast and soup.
One of the most common kitchen tasks—chopping vegetables—is made much easier by using your handy high-speed blender. There are two methods for doing so: wet chopping and dry chopping. Dry chopping works best for smaller amounts of vegetables. Simply turn your blender on a low speed (the lower the speed, the larger the pieces) and drop the vegetables onto the blade with the motor running. To chop larger amount of vegetables, for example a head of cabbage to make sauerkraut or to make riced cauliflower, start by adding large chunks of vegetables to the blender followed by enough water to float the veggie chunks off the blade. Pulse the blender until you’ve reached the desired texture, then strain the veggies. Voila! Cauliflower crust pizza coming right up.
Make dairy-free milk.
Whether you’re lactose intolerant or not, milk alternatives are on the rise. But store-bought brands can often contain added sugars, emulsifiers, and preservatives—never mind the cost. Why not make your own at home? A high-speed blender can whip together water and nuts of your choice into a creamy, delicious base for cereal, smoothies, or on its own with no straining required. In addition to the classic soy, experiment with walnuts, cashews, or hazelnuts, and consider adding vanilla bean, a touch of agave or maple syrup, or cinnamon to your creation. It’s so easy that you might never go back to the boxed variety.
If you’ve experimented with a gluten-free diet, you are already familiar with the cost and hassle of tracking down wheat flour alternatives. It’s simple and inexpensive to make your own homemade rice, spelt, quinoa, and yes, even classic wheat flour if you have the right blender. Just load up the container with the dry grain of choice and slowly increase the speed, blending to the degree of fineness that you prefer.
Replace your food processor.
High-performance blenders are known for their ability to pulverize pretty much anything into a smooth blend, but they're also versatile enough to replace your food processor for those times you want to leave some texture. Use the blender on low to make pesto and salsa with the perfect chunkiness, no mincing or dicing required. Blend a little longer for smooth and silky sauces, nut butters, and hummus. Bonus: the blender tends to be a lot easier to clean than the food processor.
Save the arm workout for barre class—the powerful blades of the blender take the place of kneading when mixing up dough for bread and pizza. Making pastries or a dutch baby? Using the blender will help the mix aerate and puff up perfectly in the oven. Just blend up the dry ingredients first before adding the wet, and pulse until a ball forms.