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Can you juice with a smoothie maker?


Making fresh fruit and vegetable juices at home can provide a nutritious and delicious addition to your diet. Juices extracted using a juice extractor typically contain more nutrients than smoothies made in a blender, since the blending process incorporates additional ingredients like ice, milk or yogurt. However, using just a smoothie maker to “juice” can still produce tasty, healthy drinks. While they may be a bit different in texture and fiber content than true juices, smoothie makers can effectively extract liquid and nutrients from produce to create juice-like beverages.

Juicers vs. Blenders

Juicers and blenders operate differently to prepare fruit and vegetable drinks. Juicers extract the liquid contents of produce, leaving behind the solid fiber in a pulp. This separation results in a smooth, drinkable juice containing vitamins, minerals and other nutrients in a concentrated, easy-to-digest form. Blenders incorporate all parts of the produce into the final drink. They finely chop and puree the ingredients with liquid to make a thick, smoothie-like beverage containing fiber.

Making Juice in a Smoothie Maker

While smoothie makers are not ideal substitutes for true juicers, you can still use them to make tasty fruit and vegetable juices. The key is straining the blended mixture to remove fiber, extracting a more juice-like liquid. Here are some tips for juicing with a smoothie maker:

– Use a strainer – Pour the blended mixture through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to separate the liquid from solids. This removes much of the fiber for a smoother consistency.

– Add liquid – Blend produce with some water, coconut water, almond milk or other liquid to thin out the texture. Liquids also help the blender extract more juice.

– Remove peels – Peels from citrus fruits, apples, etc. can impart undesirable textures. Peel before blending.

– Add ice – Use ice cubes in place of some of the liquid. As they melt, ice releases liquid to thin the blend into more of a juice.

– Filter pulp – For smoother juice, do a second filtering by squeezing blended solids wrapped in cheesecloth.

– Chill – Cold temperatures help the juice thicken up. Chill it in the fridge after straining.

– Adjust ratios – Use more liquid-rich fruits and veggies like oranges, grapes, tomatoes, spinach or kale which yield more juice.

Smoothie Maker Juicing Tips

Making juice-like drinks in your smoothie maker takes some trial and error to find the right recipes and methods. Here are some additional tips:

– Mix fruits and vegetables – Combine produce with plenty of liquid/ice to achieve a juice consistency. Using all fruits can be overly sweet and thick.

– Blend small batches – Don’t overfill your smoothie maker. Small batches blend and strain more efficiently.

– Peel citrus – Leave peels on citrus and you’ll get unpleasantly bitter, oily flavors.

– Use leafy greens – They contain nutrients and blend down into juice well. Good options are spinach, kale, chard, etc.

– Try herbs – Small amounts of fresh herbs like parsley, basil and mint can enhance flavor.

– Soften produce – Lightly steaming tougher items like carrots and beets before blending can increase liquid extraction.

– Chill and stir – Cold juices may separate or need stirring after sitting. Quick chilling and occasional shaking helps.

– Experiment – Keep tweaking your recipes depending on the produce used and your personal preference for texture and flavor.

Benefits of Juicing with a Smoothie Maker

While making true juices will extract more liquid and nutrients from your produce, using a smoothie maker has some advantages:

– Retains fiber – Smoothie maker juices will contain most of the beneficial fiber found in whole fruits/vegetables which juicers remove. Fiber improves digestion and heart health.

– Uses whole ingredients – Juices made in a blender minimize waste since no pulp is discarded.

– Provides flexibility – Smoothie makers allow you to easily adjust ingredient ratios and textures.

– Versatility – Blenders can make a variety of juices as well as smoothies, purees, nut milks, and more.

– Convenience – You don’t need a separate appliance because smoothie makers are multi-functional.

– Low cost – Smoothie makers are usually less expensive compared to high-performance juicers.

Smoothie Maker Juice Recipes

Here are some tasty juice recipes to try in your smoothie maker:

Citrus Fruit Juice

  • 2 oranges, peeled
  • 1 grapefruit, peeled
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup ice

Apple Carrot Beet Juice

  • 2 apples, cored and chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 small beet, peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup coconut water
  • 1 cup ice

Tropical Green Juice

  • 1 cup pineapple chunks
  • 1 banana, peeled
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 1 cup coconut water
  • 1/4 cup mint leaves
  • 1 cup ice

Berry Beet Juice

  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 small beet, peeled and chopped
  • 1 inch ginger, peeled
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 cup ice

Nutrients in Smoothie Maker Juices

The juices produced with a smoothie maker will retain most of the vitamins, minerals and other beneficial compounds found in the original whole fruits and vegetables. Here are some of the key nutrients you can get:

Nutrient Benefits Found In
Vitamin C Immunity, skin health, antioxidant Citrus fruits, tropical fruits, tomatoes, leafy greens
Vitamin A Eye and skin health, immunity Carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach, mangoes
Potassium Heart and nerve health, fluid balance Bananas, avocados, melons, leafy greens
Magnesium Bone health, nerve and muscle function Leafy greens, nuts, avocados, bananas
Fiber Digestion, heart health, stabilizes blood sugar Whole fruits, vegetables, leafy greens


While juice makers are the best appliances for extracting nutrient-dense liquids from fruits and veggies, smoothie makers can also produce tasty juice-like beverages. With some adaption of recipes and straining methods, smoothie makers can juice most produce while retaining beneficial fiber. The key is experimenting with ingredients and proportions to achieve your preferred flavor and texture. Smoothie maker juices are healthful, convenient and delicious.