Thursday, April 5, 2012

Review: Cuisinart Variable Speed Hand Blender

Sometime last year the chopper attachment of my immersion blender/whisk broke. It's a plastic immersion blender and I wanted to switch to stainless steel anyhow so rather than replace the chopper attachment (which would have been the cheapest option), I have been on the hunt for a stainless steel immersion blender. I finally decided on the Cuisinart Variable Speed Hand Blender with Chopper Attachment (HB-154PC1) and got it a few days ago.

Like most immersion blenders you have to hold down the power button for the unit to operate. However, this one has a low and high speed setting which is nice. The whisk is a bit wider than the whisk of the blender I had before and it's powerful. I made paleOMG's chocolate cake in a mug for DH and used the whisk to blend all the ingredients. It didn't take much for them to be blended well.

The chopper attachment holds 2 cups which is a decent size. I tried chopping an onion but put too much into the container. I filled it to the top with big onion pieces which resulted in liquid-y onions on the bottom and large chunks of onions on the top. Of course I read the instructions AFTER I tried this and it says to fill the container no more than 2/3 of the way when chopping foods. DUH! I also noticed that the speed of the chopper isn't all that fast even on the high setting.

The lid of the chopper attachment is hard to put on and take off. It sort of snaps into little grooves in the chopper bowl. Putting the lid on isn't too bad, but taking it back off sometimes takes me a while which is a hassle. The top part is rounded and smooth so it's hard to get a good grip on it. The little grooves on the chopper bowl are also hard to clean. DH didn't seem to have any problems with the lid however so maybe it's just me.

The bowl of the chopper attachment has 4 vertical ridges on the inside. These make it impossible to scrape the inside of the bowl with a spatula or scraper and therefore hard to get food out. They also make it hard to clean if you make something creamy like the Coconut-Lime Avocado Creme I made today for example.

The chopper blade has a circular "groove" (see arrow in picture - I know, you can't really see it) in the plastic part in which food gets stuck. Again, very hard to clean if you make something creamy. I had to use the spray hose of my kitchen sink to "blast" the Avocado Coconut Cream out of there.

So all in all I am not really happy with this hand blender and will most likely take it back to Costco. The problem is that I have not yet found another hand blender that gets good reviews, has stainless steel attachments, and is under $40. I would prefer not to spend more than that but the way it is looking right now, I may have to.

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