Choosing the Right Juicer


The number and types of juicers available are almost mind-boggling. If you have a particular fruit or vegetable you would like to have juiced, there is, in all probability, the machine to do it. Two totally unrelated types of produce? No problem. Just snap on the accessory needed. What do you do with all that excess pulp? Easy. Time to make a delicious carrot cake.

There are several categories of juicers: Centrifugal; Citrus; Manuel Press; Single Gear (Masticating), and Twin Gear (Triturating).

Let us look at each category as its own entity. Each type has its own special characteristics.

KitchenAid Easy Clean Juicer
The Centrifugal Juicer is, in all likelihood, the most popular and affordable of the juicers presently available on the market. A shredding disc spins out the juice; the leftover pulp is held in a strainer basket in the machine. Centrifugal Juicers use a flat cutting blade on the bottom of a swiftly rotating container. The fruit or vegetable is rapidly torn or shredded by the cutting blade and is then thrown against the sides of the basket; think of a carnival ride where the patron is tethered onto the inside of a circular frame and when the power is turned on, is flung against the rim, being held on only by centrifugal force, a force that acts outward on a body moving about a center. Because of this intense force, the juice rendered from the produce moves through tiny holes in the basket and through a spout. In some centrifugal juicers, the pulp is spun off by the centrifugal force and gathered in a separate basket. Centrifugal Juicers produce excellent juices but its mechanical components use more oxygen, reducing shelf life of the juice.

Bananas and berries and other soft fruits are not recommended for use in a Centrifugal Juicer, nor are leafy vegetables such as parsley, spinach, and wheatgrass.

Waring Health Juice Extractor
Centrifugal Juicers are available in two main types. The Full Basket sort is extremely more effective than the Pulp Ejection type machines. The produce pulp is not automatically expelled during the juicing process, allowing the centrifugal force to continuously draw the juice out of the pulp screen/basket. Occasional cleaning of the basket is called for every 1 to 2 quarts. Optional basket filters are available to ease the cleanup process.

Centrifugal Juicers are available in two main types. The Full Basket sort is extremely more effective than the Pulp Ejection type machines. The produce pulp is not automatically expelled during the juicing process, allowing the centrifugal force to continuously draw the juice out of the pulp screen/basket. Occasional cleaning of the basket is called for every 1 to 2 quarts. Optional basket filters are available to ease the cleanup process.

Omega Masticating Vertical Juicer
The second type of Centrifugal Juicer is Continuous. This sort of juicer uses an angled strainer basket to continuously collect juice. The mechanical action is quite similar to that of the full basket type but the pulp does not remain in the basket. Moving up along the angled basket, the pulp is ejected into an outer container. It is not necessary to stop juicing when it comes time to clean out the basket. Cleanup is extremely easy.

A Masticating juicer does just that - it masticates or chews. Basically, your fruits or vegetables are “chewed” up. After the produce has been inserted into a chamber, it is broken down by a screw or auger sort of mechanism. The plant material is compressed against the casing, straining or crushing it between twin gears. A great pressing force on the produce by a slowly rotating mechanism forces juice out as extremely dry pulp is automatically ejected. The slowness of the process minimizes heat production and oxidation of the juice, enabling high nutrient values to be retained. The operator of this type of juicer needs to be able to exert moderate pressure when forcing hard fruits and vegetables into the feed chute; he must have sufficient arm strength to put adequate pressure against the auger or screw mechanism. Be sure to cut up large fruits and vegetables into smaller chunks. Added attachments allow for the preparation of nut butters, pureed fruits, and pastas. A masticating juicer makes less noise than does a centrifugal juicer.

Metrokane L-Press Juicer
Within the masticating juicers are the Pressing Juicers. The Single Auger Juicer consists of a screw type single auger which propels the fruit or vegetable pulp along the auger with a motion that causes the pulp to be pressed against a straining screen or housing. A combination of soft plus harder fruits and vegetables should be used because the auger needs the plant fiber to help propel the pulp along the span of the auger. Parsley, spinach, and watercress, as well as other leafy vegetables, work well with this type of juicer.

The Twin Screw or Triturating type of juicer works in a similar manner to the above but instead of a single auger, it uses two long gears that mash together to pull the plant material along. It works in two stages: in Stage 1, the produce is shredded and in Stage 2, the shredded vegetables and fruits are squeezed between the two gears so to force out the juice. Again, as above, soft and harder fruits need to be combined to insure proper gear movement.

Cuisinart Pulp Control Citrus Juicer
Another category of juicers includes the Reamers. Reamers are used to extract juice from citrus fruits such as oranges, tangerines, lemons, limes, or grapefruit. Juice is extracted by starting with a citrus fruit that has been cut in half, with the outer peel left intact (do not remove the peel). The fruit is pressed against a ridged cone that rotates slowly. The pressure of the rotating cone against the fruit causes juice to be expelled, along with some pith, the nutrient rich spongy white layer of the peel. Also included in this category are Manual Reamers which do basically the same job as the reamers described above except no electricity is involved, just good, old-fashioned muscle power. A Press will extract juice in the same manner as a garlic press does, by squeezing a lever until your fruit is extruded.

Most types of fruit need their seeds removed prior to juicing. Most tiny seeds, such as grape and strawberry, are okay but apple pips contain a trace amount of cyanide. Do not take chances here - just pop the pips right out.

If you plan to juice harder fruits and vegetables on a regular basis, you should consider purchasing a machine with a strong motor; generally speaking, the more powerful the motor, the longer you will have it to enjoy. When purchasing a juicer, no matter what the style, it is a good idea to remember that you pay for what you get. You might find a juicer that seems to be an incredible bargain but you are just as likely to discover that bargain juicer will have a burnt-out motor the day after the warranty expires.

See many more Electric Juicers and Manual Juicers.


©2007, ©2015 Terry Kaufman, for Niftykitchen.com
Revised and updated July, 2015
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