Choosing the Right Juicer
So, you want a juicer, but with so many options it can be tough to choose. Lets start with the first stage, Centrifugal or Masticating? Both styles have their positives and their negatives, but which is best for you? Ask yourself what ingredients you think you're likely to juice the most of?
A Masticating juicer can be known by many names and some refer to them as either Cold Press juicers or Slow juicers. They function by crushing and pressing juice out of ingredients through the use of a slow rotating augur (screw) and a screen. Due to their slow turning speed, Masticating juicers are able to operate more quietly and they can extract much higher yields of juice from the same weight of ingredients. That covers the basics of masticating juicers, but there is more to them than that, as they can be divided into 3 further categories:
- Vertical Juicers
- Horizontal Juicers
- Twin Gear Juicers
Each of these juicer style have their own strengths and weaknesses, but we'll cover that later.
These juicers typically have spinning blades that spin against a mesh filter, separating the juice from its body. The juicer will then separate the juice and the pulp into two containers.
Centrifugal juicers are very quick at juicing your ingredients but with that comes a fair amount of noise. They often have two speeds for hard or soft fruit and veg, but certain ingredients such as leafy greens and soft fruits are not juiced as well in these types of juicers. The most common myth about juicing your ingredients in a centrifugal is that they heat up the juice which destroys the nutrients. This isn't always the case as they barely produce enough heat to destroy the enzymes in your juice.
Masticating Juicers Preserve Nutrients
When it comes to the nutritional quality and yield, everyone wants the best they can get. The nutritional quality and quantity of your juice can be determined by two factors, how much force is used to separate the juice from the pulp and how well the plant fibres are broken down.
The juice quality is ensured by the process. This is why masticating juicers get better reviews about the juice quality because of the grinding and chewing action they have on the ingredients, which is the most efficient way of breaking down the plant cells and membranes.
Another reason why masticating juicers tend to have better quality juice than centrifugal juicers is because the ingredients have to pass through very small gaps between two stainless steel gears, which achieves a better breakdown of the cells.
In a centrifugal juicer, the plant's cell walls are broken open very quickly due to the centrifugal force. This means that there is very little time for the cells to be broken down completely, which makes the juice less colourful and has a slight decrease in its nutritional content. Centrifugals tend to incorporate oxygen into there juicing process, which will mean your juice will discolour more quickly due to oxidation and the shelf life of your juice will be decreased. Whereas masticating juicers don’t incorporate as much air, so your juices will last much longer.
Does Juicing Speed Matter?
Many people get caught up on the Rotations Per Minute (RPM) because they think the lower the RPM the better the juice. The speed of the juicer will have no effect on your juice other than the time it takes to process your ingredients. If you look at an Angel juicer, which is one of the best juicers on the market, you will find that they use twin gear technology which gives the best quality of juice you can get at home.
The RPM of the twin gears can be a lot faster than the slowest of juicers, meaning that the slower your juicer doesn't mean the best juice! A lot of the time the juicing method is the most important aspect to consider when buying a juicer.
Although the rotational speed is low with masticating juicers, the powerful large augers can process more juice in each low-speed revolution than most centrifugal juicers, this is due to the pressure or force used to separate the juice from the pulp.
Centrifugal juicers tend to struggle with soft berries as most of the juice will end up in the pulp, which can turn out to be very wasteful and expensive. Also, leafy greens like kale and wheatgrass can be juiced but you won't get as much juice from those ingredients when using a fast juicer.
Twin Gear Juicers
A twin-gear juicer will crush and grind fresh fruits or vegetables finely to extract the juice, nutrients and enzymes.
A twin-gear has two gears that rotate inward, because of the gears shape and actions it tears open the produce’s cell membranes and releases its nutrients and enzymes. It also breaks up more of the phytochemical from the produce than other non twin gear juicers. This results in a rich-coloured juice which is also richer in its nutrients and minerals.
Results will vary depending on the juicer itself as no two are the same. However, cheap alternative juicers that say they are copies of leading brands will usually have lower quality parts and a poorer performance.
Slow juicers or masticating juicers have often been branded with an inconvenience because they don't juice as quick and they have lots of complicated parts. However many slow juicers have lost the title of an inconvenience as the newer vertical slow juicers are a lot easier to use, have fewer parts and are reasonably quick at juicing your ingredients. This is because of the improved augers and filter screens which are much bigger allowing more juice to come through, without decreasing the quality of the juice. Even though they are still slightly slower than centrifugal juicers, spending a couple of extra minutes with your slow juicer is barely an inconvenience when you think of the quality and the increase of juice you are getting.
A centrifugal juicer will offer you speed and convenience with a lower price to pay, whereas masticating juicers are slightly more expensive but are good for juicing a wide range of produce, have a better juice quality and you can extend the shelf life of your juice. A twin geared juicer is best suit to those who will be juicing a lot and are juicing leafy greens. We recommend that you really think about what you want out of your juicer before buying, as there can be quite a bit to consider. Below will help you decide what type of juicer is best for you.
- Best For Leafy Greens & Wheatgrass: Twin Gear Juicers
- Best For Hard Fruits & Vegetables: Centrifugal Juicers
- Best For Soft Fruits: Vertical and Horizontal Slow Juicers
- Best All Round: Slow Juicers
We know price plays a big part in deciding whether to purchase a product or not and there are many cheap alternatives to big brands, which can be tempting. But we must urge you to start with a well-trusted brand or manufacturer and not go for cheap knockoffs because the results will be nowhere near the quality you will be expecting.
Other Juicers to Consider: Citrus Juicers
Fresh orange juice in the morning gets the day off to a good start, so if you intend on juicing oranges or any citrus fruits, you should consider a citrus juicer. Juicers can juice citrus fruit, but you have to peel them before you juice them due to the skin being so bitter. peeling several oranges for just one glass of orange juice isn’t the most ideal situation, but with citrus juicers theres no need to peel your fruit
There are attachments you can buy to replace the juicing bowl on a juicer but you need to make sure you get a citrus attachment that is compatible with your juicer.
Like many other juicers, citrus juicers come either as a manual citrus press or an electric citrus juicer.
Let's first look at manual citrus presses. These are hand operated juicers that extract the juice via a lever that you pull down to squash the fruit.
If you’d rather let the juicer do the work for you, then electric citrus juicers or citrus attachments are something you should consider. This is where the juicer will spin automatically when you pull down the lever, making work minimal and quick.