Inside the Cult of the $400 Blender

Opinion: Why it's totally worth spending so much on a Vitamix
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 21, 2013 1:59 PM CDT
Updated Oct 26, 2013 12:29 PM CDT
Inside the Cult of the $400 Blender
The Vitamix blends ... whatever.   (©)

Of the many great lines in Catherine Price's exploration of whether it was worth spending $429.89 on a blender*, this one stands out: A woman spotted Price toting a box containing her brand-new Vitamix 5200 and called out that she loved hers so much "I would recommend it to the dead." Such is the passion inspired by the so-called "Ferrari of blenders." Price runs down some numbers beyond that cost for Slate: the 240mph that the blades can spin; the more than 90-year history of the company behind it; the astounding 13.4 people the average Vitamix owner recommends the gadget to. So Price decided to put it to the test, and spend 5 days eating nothing but foods prepared in her Vitamix, which, she points out, behaves better than a juicer: It churns "everything into drinkable form, including fiber."

She made soups (which actually get hot if you let the Vitamix run for six minutes), smoothies, hummus, and almond butter. Emboldened, she deviated from the 301-page recipe guide, going so far as to toss in things like "droopy chard. ... I began to use the Vitamix almost like a garbage disposal, the main difference being that I drank what it produced." After three days, she was a convert (and when her mother turned down a blueberry-kale smoothie that looked like "bile," Price "felt as if she were rejecting my new boyfriend"). Why the passion? The great workmanship, for one, but Price thinks it's something more: "nutritional magic. We all know we should be eating more vegetables, but we prefer to drink smoothies. The Vitamix allows us to do both: What starts as an obligation gets blended into a treat." Click for her full column, in which she shares how she felt when her challenge was over.

*Price points out that it's almost an "insult" to call the Vitamix a blender. (Read more blender stories.)

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