Slow speed preserves nutrients
Easy to clean
Juices leafy greens well
Not the quietest
Small feed chute requires more food prep
A high-end masticating juicer, such as the Omega Nutrition Center, is the gold standard when it comes to extracting maximum juice from fruits and veggies. Masticating juicers crush fruits and vegetables in a bladeless system at low speed to prevent heat buildup that can damage perishable vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Keep in mind, this style of juicer will take longer to operate compared to higher-speed centrifugal models. But, if you want to make high-quality juice with minimum food waste, a masticating juicer is your best bet. Is the Omega Nutrition Center the best in its class? We stocked up on produce to find out.
Setup: Takes some practice
This was our first time using a masticating juicer and we found there was a steep learning curve when it came to identifying all the parts, what they did, and how to put them together. The Omega comes with a lot of pieces; we counted ten individually wrapped parts in the box—not including the base or instruction manual.
The first step is attaching the clear feed chute and drum to the base. We found it took several tries to get the chute and drum piece lined up and locked into place almost every time we used the juicer. Then, the hopper is placed on top of the chute and an auger and a cone with a juicing screen are fitted together, inserted inside the drum, and locked into the base. Finally, an end cap is screwed on and two separate containers are positioned beneath the unit to collect juice and pulp.
This setup process changes slightly depending on which function you want the juicer to perform. Different cones and end nozzles allow the Omega to perform homogenizing functions, such as mincing herbs, grinding nut butter and coffee beans, and forming pasta. Once you get the hang of the parts, their function, and the entire process, it’s a lot easier. And should you forget—as we did!—the provided instruction manual clearly lays everything out.
Performance: Slow, but powerful
The hardest part of using the Omega Nutrition Center was figuring out how to set it up the first time and prepping our fruits and vegetables for juicing. Because the feed chute is small in diameter, you can’t feed whole fruits and vegetables directly into the juicer. Everything has to be cut into small pieces and fed in limited quantities, so don’t expect to make juice in a hurry.
All the juice we prepared tasted so good, we drank it on the spot.
We made a mess peeling and cutting oranges into small pieces for juicing, but the resulting juice was worth it. We were impressed with how fresh all the juices tasted—especially when compared to the results from other juicers we’ve tested. The manufacturer claims the juice can be stored up to 72 hours without losing any nutrients or flavor thanks to slow, “cold” processing. That said, all the juice we prepared tasted so good, we drank it on the spot.
The Omega juiced hard and soft fruits, vegetables, and leafy greens with excellent results. The dual extraction process resulted in a high volume of juice and very dry pulp—no matter what we threw at it. We made a variety of fruit and vegetable juices, using tomatoes, bell peppers, celery, carrots, spinach, cauliflower, citrus fruits, apples, and berries. Firmer produce, like carrots, required a little more effort to push through the chute. The machine makes a little noise during operation, but we didn’t find it to be excessively loud. Overall, the only real effort on our part was keeping patient while the dual extraction process worked its magic.
We didn’t test all of the Omega’s functions, but we did try processing frozen bananas for dessert. We followed the manufacturer’s suggestion to let our frozen fruit thaw a bit before processing and the unit had no problem churning out creamy banana soft serve.
The juicer’s stabilizing feet gripped our granite countertops while in use and we found the juice container was easy to pour from. The included sieve made straining unwanted froth easy, but honestly, very little froth was produced to begin with thanks to the slow speed.
Design: Functional but not frilly
Before we even had the Omega out of the box, we noticed how heavy it was. Weighing close to 20 pounds, it’s the heaviest of all the juicers we’ve used. The additional weight required some extra muscle when we moved the 14.5 x 6.5 x 15.5-inch unit back and forth from storage to our counter, but the built-in handle on the top of the base made it a bit easier to transport.
We ended up keeping the Omega in our pantry as opposed to on our countertop since it’s not the most eye-catching juicer on the market—especially when disassembled. The Omega takes up more horizontal space than vertical juicers, which is something to think about if you prefer countertop storage. We ended up stashing the attachments in the included juice and pulp containers to keep things together, but with continued use, we’d probably invest in a dedicated storage bin to corral everything.
Features: Multiple kitchen functions in one
The Omega’s versatility sets it apart from other juicers on the market. It comes with a range of attachments that can be used to make nut butters and milks, grind coffee beans, mince and chop herbs and vegetables, process frozen fruit soft serve, shape dough for pasta and breadsticks, and even puree homemade baby food. No wonder they call it the Nutrition Center!
We knew the Omega was extracting the maximum amount of liquid it could when we felt how dry the pulp was.
As mentioned before, the Omega operates at a slow speed—only 80 RPM (as opposed to the 1,650 to 15,000 RPMs of other machines)—which helps maintain low temperatures and prevent nutrient loss due to heat buildup. The real power lies within the dual extraction process; fruits and vegetables are crushed within the drum to extract juice and then the remaining pulp is squeezed again to extract every last drop of juice. We knew the Omega was extracting the maximum amount of liquid it could when we felt how dry the pulp was.
We didn’t experience much trouble juicing soft or hard fruits and vegetables, but in case you do, there is a built-in reverse feature to dislodge food clogs. It’s located near the on/off switch for easy access.
Cleaning: Quick and simple
Juicers are often stereotyped as being notoriously hard to clean, but that couldn’t be further from the truth with the Omega. Despite the intimidating setup process and numerous attachments, we were pleasantly surprised to find the cleanup process was quick and easy. Because there’s no bowl or blade (like with centrifugal juicers), there are minimal parts that need washing.
Juicers are often stereotyped as being notoriously hard to clean, but that couldn’t be further from the truth with the Omega
The manual indicates all parts are top rack dishwasher safe. We washed the chute/drum, auger, cone, end caps, and containers both by hand and in the dishwasher with ease. A cleaning brush is included to help remove food particles and buildup from the juicing screen and hard to reach spots within the chute/drum.
It should be noted that some parts may stain when exposed to highly pigmented fruits and vegetables, like beets and carrots. The manufacturer suggests soaking parts in a mix of baking soda and water for 30 minutes, but we found washing right after use prevented any discoloration.
Price: On the high end
At roughly $300, the Omega Nutrition Center is certainly an investment. Centrifugal juicers cost about half that, but most masticating juicers with similar features are also priced between $250 to $400. If you’re serious about juicing and want an appliance that produces fresh, high-quality juice, the Omega is an excellent choice.
The appliance’s versatility may also help justify the higher price tag if you don’t already own gadgets to perform the extra function we mentioned. Knowing the Omega juicer is covered by a 15-year warranty also makes the price more reasonable.
Competition: Masticating vs. Centrifugal
We’ve already touched on the difference between masticating and centrifugal juicers. Which juicing style you choose comes down to individual preferences, but we’ve tested top models with notable features in both categories to help you decide.
Breville Juice Fountain: If you want to quickly make large batches of juice, whether for special gatherings or just to have on hand for several days, you’ll want to check out Breville’s centrifugal juicer. With an extra-large juice jug and pulp container, it’s a mess-free solution to large scale juicing. The Breville also features an extra-wide feed chute that most whole fruits and veggies fit through without much pre-cutting—majorly cutting down on prep time.
Theoretically, the Omega is also capable of producing as much juice as you want, but doing so would require frequent pauses to empty the approximately 3.5-cup juice container into a larger jug for storage, equating to extra prep time and more dishes to wash. When it comes to capacity—and cost (it’s $180)—the Breville has the edge.
Breville Compact Juice Fountain: This model is another centrifugal juicer from Breville. It functions as fast as its cousin mentioned above with an even smaller footprint. As the name suggests, its design is compact to minimize counter space. It fit easily beneath our cabinets and looked sleek on our countertop.
As for function, we found it extremely easy to set up, use, and clean. And, like other Breville juicers, it features an extra wide feed chute so there’s not much need for pre-chopping fruits and veggies before juicing. Its 25-ounce juice jug provided more than enough capacity to satisfy the juicing needs of our small household. Taste-wise, we preferred the Omega’s juice, but if you’re short on time, space, and money, the $100 Breville Compact Juice Fountain is still a good choice.
Buy it if you’re serious about juicing!
If you’re debating which type of juicer to purchase, you can’t go wrong with this masticating option which also pulls its weight as a coffee bean grinder, sorbet maker, pasta shaper, and more. Its slow speed creates high-quality juice that tastes fresh with minimal froth and food waste. Sure, its juicing function takes longer and involves more prep time compared to centrifugal models with wider feed chutes, but it’s a small price to pay if you’re going to be juicing often and prioritize superior taste and nutrition.
- Product Name Nutrition Center Masticating Juicer
- Product Brand Omega
- MPN 8006
- Price $300.00
- Weight 20 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 14.5 x 6.5 x 15.5 in.
- Material Heavy grade polymer body, stainless steel cutters
- Speed 80 RPM
- Wattage 200 W
- Warranty 15 years
- What’s Included Juicing cone, homogenizing cone, juice container, pulp container, sieve, cleaning brush, 5 nozzles