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An immersion blender, also called a handheld blender, can be a useful and space-saving alternative to a full-size blender since it can be tucked into a drawer or cabinet.
The smaller size makes these blenders incredibly versatile. They can be used for a variety of everyday kitchen tasks like mixing pancake batter, whisking eggs, whipping cream, blending smoothies, and even pureeing baby food. It's an essential tool for blending creamy, pureed vegetable soups, like butternut squash soup, right in the pot.
Immersion blenders don't have a standard sized blade attachment. Paying attention to the diameter of the blade is important if you want to be able to blend smoothies or salad dressings in drinking glasses or mason jars. You'll also have to choose between corded and cordless models. Cordless immersion blenders give you more freedom, but you have to remember to charge them.
Here, our buying tips and picks for the best immersion blenders.
Best Overall: Cuisinart CSB-179 Smart Stick Hand Blender
Variable speed control
Convenient attachments included
Easy to clean
Awkwardly placed safety button
Cuisinart may be the most familiar name in food processors, so we’re confident in the brand's knowledge of spinning blades, no matter what size they are. This immersion blender has a button for continuous or pulse blending, and variable speed control so you can choose exactly the speed that’s right—no need to rely on a preset high and low that might not be perfect.
Our tester preferred using the highest speed setting for most recipes, but noted the adjustable speed is useful for blending softer foods, like avocados, or recipes that may splatter.
Power Rating: 300 watts | Speed(s): Variable | Dimensions: 5.50 x 8.50 x 13.00 inches | Warranty: 3 years
"The main feature of the Cuisinart Smart Stick Hand Blender is the variable speed control, which was easy to use. We found that we generally set it at the highest speed and left it there." - Donna Currie, Product Tester
Runner-Up, Best Overall: Kitchen Aid 2-Speed Hand Blender
Comfortable soft-grip handle
Variety of colors to choose from
Simple, easy-to-use design
Blending arm can detach while in use
This simple two-speed blender has a removable blending arm that makes cleaning easier and comes from a brand that’s much-loved when it comes to kitchen appliances and gadgets. The blender doesn’t include a lot of accessories or frills that add to the price, so it’s quite affordable despite the quality.
It comes with a handy blending jar with a lid, so it can be used for storage before or after foods are blended. The soft-grip handle is easy to hold when blending, so it’s comfortable to use, no matter how much you need to blend.
Like many KitchenAid products, this comes in a wide range of colors, so you can match this to your stand mixer or kitchen décor, or add a pop of crazy color to the kitchen.
Power Rating: 220 watts | Speed(s): 2 | Dimensions: 2.3 x 2.3 x 15.8 inches | Warranty: 1 year
"This KitchenAid blender gets the job done well (and fast!). Plus, it's so easy to clean. The blending arm quickly detaches, so you can rinse it in the sink." — Julia Warren, Senior Director, The Spruce Eats
Best Budget: Mueller Austria Ultra-Stick 500 Watt 9-Speed Immersion Multi-Purpose Hand Blender
Easy to clean
Makes a lot of noise
The Mueller Austria stick blender is a great option if our top picks don't quite fit within the budget for an immersion blender. You don't sacrifice any power for a more affordable price, though.
With a full copper motor and 500 watts of power, this handheld blender is plenty powerful to handle making baby food purees, smoothies, smooth soups and sauces, and even homemade peanut or almond butter. Reviewers say everything about this blender feels sturdy, durable, well-made and comparable to blenders that cost twice as much.
It includes a milk frother for the ultimate upgrade to homemade lattes and a whisk attachment so you can use it to whip cream, beat eggs or make a batch of homemade mayo for sandwiches. Clean up of the blender and attachments is as simple as running under warm water or popping them in the dishwasher for a more thorough cleaning.
Power Rating: 500 watts | Speed(s): Variable | Dimensions: N/A | Warranty: 1 year
Best for Smoothies: KOIOS Oxasmart 800-Watt 12-Speed Immersion Hand Blender
Tricky to clean food stuck in blades
With 12 speeds and a turbo mode, this immersion blender will make short work of fruits and vegetables to make perfectly smooth milkshakes and smoothies, as well as easy salad dressings, mayonnaise, and sauces. The KOIOS Oxasmart includes a chopper attachment for chopping onions or herbs, a whisk attachment for whipping eggs whites or heavy cream, and a blender jar for times when you’re not using your own container for blending and emulsifying.
The blade is reinforced with titanium for extra strength, and the bell-shaped housing over the blade keeps the blade off the bottom surface of your containers and helps prevent splashing. A loop on the top of the handle makes this easy to hang on a rack to keep it handy.
Power Rating: 800 watts | Speed(s): 12 | Dimensions: 9.9 x 5.5 x 9.9 inches| Warranty: 1 year
Best Commercial Blender for Home Use: Waring (WSB33X) 7" Light-Duty Quik Stik Immersion Blender
Great for large batches of soup
Easy to operate
Difficult to clean
Made for commercial kitchen use, but priced in line with home-use immersion blenders, this has the power to blend three gallons of soup. While this is called a light-duty blender, it’s designed for light duty in a professional kitchen environment, so it will be more than enough for your home kitchen.
This is lighter in weight than more robust commercial units, so it’s easy to hold and use. It has two speeds so you can control the texture of your food, operated with a simple button. This doesn’t come with any extras, but it’s a powerful choice for cooks who prefer commercial appliances.
Power Rating: 100 watts | Speed(s): 2 | Dimensions: 4.5 x 4.5 x 16 inches | Warranty: 1 year
Best Cordless: All-Clad Cordless Rechargeable Stainless Steel Hand Blender
Shaft and blade are dishwasher safe
Easy, one-handed use
Bulky end won't fit in smaller containers
This may be one of the easiest immersion blenders to clean since there's no cord to worry about and the shaft removes from the body of the blender. The shaft and blades are also dishwasher safe so you don’t need to worry about protecting the motor from water or hand washing yet another item. The removable shaft also gives you options for storage in small spaces where the full blender might not fit as well.
Of course, cleaning doesn’t matter if the blender doesn’t perform, but you needn’t worry about that since this blender has the All-Clad name backing it up. This is a high-powered immersion blender with a variable 5-speed setting so you’ll have complete control of the texture of your refried beans, soups, or pureed vegetables. You can even use this for a quick chop of nuts since the blade shroud gives you plenty of space.
It comes with a recharging base that doubles as upright storage housing. While this doesn’t include any accessories that you might find with other blenders, a mini chopper, and a whisk are available for purchase, if you need those options.
Power Rating: 600 watts | Speed(s): 5 | Dimensions: 7.1 x 4.9 x 10.9 inches | Warranty: 2 years
"We liked the variable speed control at the top of the blender and found there was a very noticeable difference from low speed to high speed." - Donna Currie, Product Tester
Best for Food Processing: Breville All In One Processing Station
Includes compact storage case
Can overheat when run for long periods
While most immersion blenders are designed to mimic the functions of a blender, this one also takes on many of the functions of a food processor with a 6-cup processing bowl that is powered by the blender body. You can do more than just chop in that bowl—it even includes an adjustable slicing blade with 19 thickness settings, so you can slice potatoes for chips or carrots for soup. A reversible shredding disk lets you choose from two different shredding options, while the processor bowl’s s-blade lets you chop, blend, or puree, just like a larger food processor.
Another unique accessory is the Variable Mashing Leg that lets you choose fine, medium, or coarse mashing with the twist of the head, so you can use your immersion blender for mashing potatoes without the risk of turning them into glue.
When you’re using the immersion blender in its traditional mode, the shape of the blade housing reduces suction, so it won’t get stuck to the bottom of your containers while you blend, and it has 15 speeds, giving you greater control of the result. Ice crushing blades and a whisk attachment are included, making this an incredibly versatile appliance.
Power Rating: 280 watts | Speed(s): 15 | Dimensions: 9 x 11.5 x 11 inches | Warranty: 1 year
Best for Baby Food: Braun MultiQuick 5 Baby Hand Blender
Includes lots of convenient extras
Perfect for smaller jobs
Easy to operate
Freezer tray is flimsy
While any immersion blender can be used to puree cooked carrots and bananas, this set was created with babies in mind. This has an extra blade and larger cutting area, so purees are smoother faster.
The bell-shaped shroud over the blades keeps splashing to a minimum, so there will be less mess and less to clean up when cooking is done. This has two speeds, so you can adjust the food texture to suit your baby’s needs.
The included 1 1/2-cup chopper lets you chop as well as puree, so you can add some texture to the baby’s puree, or make some salsa for yourself at the end of the day.
This includes a 20-ounce blending beaker that’s the perfect size for the blender, so you don’t have to scramble for a jar or glass to use. You can also use the beaker for making smoothies or cocktails. A flexible silicone freezer tray lets you make and freeze up to nine portions in advance, then just pop them out and thaw or heat them when you need them.
Power Rating: 350 watts | Speed(s): 2 | Dimensions: 2.2 x 2.2 x 15 inches | Warranty: 3 years
"Multipurpose tools are a must for small kitchens and Braun's Multiquick has everything you need. The blending wand makes ultra-smooth soups and smoothies and the mini chopper is great for blitzing together small batches of sauce or homemade baby food." — Patty Lee, Senior Food Editor, The Spruce Eats
We love the Cuisinart CSB-179 Smart Stick Hand Blender for its overall quality, versatility, and useful included attachments that should cover almost all your needs.
What to Look for When Buying an Immersion Blender
Immersion blenders are meant to be smaller, more compact, and easier to store than regular blenders and food processors, but that doesn't mean there isn't variation when it comes to size, weight, and style.
Pay attention to the size of the blender head—some are too bulky to fit in a standard smoothie cup and are designed for large batches. Also, decide whether you want a corded or cordless model. Cordless models offer convenience but need to be recharged often. Finally, pay attention to whether the shaft detaches, which makes for easier cleaning.
Think about what you will be using your immersion blender for the most. Some are perfect for purees, like when you want to make baby food. Others are designed to slice through ice for quick smoothie making. Most immersion blenders start at about 200 watts but can go up to 1,000. In general, the higher the wattage, the greater the power.
Most immersion blenders offer a high and low speed. High speeds are best for blending tougher ingredients, like fibrous vegetables or ice, while low speeds can chop vegetables for salsa and retain some texture.
Some models have variable speed settings, which gives you greater control and versatility over the finishes texture and consistency of your blends.
If all you want is a stick blender, then there's no reason to pay more for lots of extras (that might not be the highest quality). However, a lot of immersion blenders come with convenient items like a chopper or whisk attachment and blender jars. If you're getting an all-in-one immersion blender package, keep in mind how you'll store everything—some come with storage cases for all the pieces so nothing gets lost.
Why use an immersion blender instead of a regular blender?
An immersion blender gives you more flexibility, since you can blend recipes directly in a cooking pot, cup, jar, or mixing bowl. Not having to transfer recipes into a regular blender saves time, mess, and cuts down on the number of dishes to clean.
Immersion blenders also do a better job of blended or pureeing small amounts of food. Regular blenders often need to be filled to a certain level for the most efficient blending.
They're also smaller and therefore easier to store compared to countertop blenders.
Can you froth milk with an immersion blender?
Yes, you can froth milk with an immersion blender. Place your milk of choice in a container with tall sides to prevent splashing. A mason jar or drinking glass will work.
Can you use an immersion blender for mashed potatoes?
Immersion blenders will mash potatoes, but many cooks report the texture of the potatoes turns gummy and starchy due to the high-speed of blenders.
The best tool to mash potatoes for a creamy, but not gummy, texture is either a hand-masher or a ricer.
How do you use an immersion blender without splashing?
Blend in a container with tall sides to keep splashing to a minimum. Tall drinking jars, mason jars, pitchers, and deep pots are your best options. Another tip to cut down on splashing is to make sure the blade head of the immersion blender is completely submerged.
Can you use an immersion blender in a nonstick pan?
You can, but you run the risk of scratching the nonstick coating if the blades make contact with the bottom or sides of the pan. To prevent this, don't touch the blades to the bottom of the pan and hold the immersion blender at an angle.
Some immersion blenders, like the Vitamix model, have been specially designed with blade guards for use in nonstick cookware. Still, if you're worried about your nonstick pans, it may be better to blend in another container to be safe.
Can an immersion blender replace a hand mixer?
While an immersion blender can handle some of the same tasks as a hand mixer, like whipping egg whites into stiff peaks or making whipped cream, it can not replace a hand mixer. Immersion blenders are not equipped to mix stiff batters or cream sugar into butter.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Donna Currie is a cookbook author and food writer who specializes in product reviews and recipes. Her kitchen is filled with all the latest gadgets, from smart blenders to immersion blenders, and she's tested out models from numerous brands on this list.
Julia Warren, Senior Director of The Spruce Eats, loves using her KitchenAid immersion blender, featured above, and Patty Lee, Senior Editor of The Spruce Eats, uses her Braun immersion blender to make everything from sauces to homemade baby food for her son.