The Best Blenders for Dairy-Free Living on a Budget

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In every big block store, there are hundreds of small appliances vying for space in your kitchen. And every year the latest “must have” trends are pushed via food blogs – stand mixers, air fryers, sous vide cookers … Unfortunately, most become albatrosses that simply take up space. But in my opinion, blenders are forever. Especially on a dairy-free diet. And you don’t need to pay fad prices for this everyday necessity.

The Best Blenders for Dairy-Free Living on a Budget

The Best Blenders for Dairy-Free Living on a Budget

Blenders are the key to making creamy sauces, smoothies, and even homemade cheeses. But it’s important to find one that fits your needs and your budget. The following includes practical picks from my home and from Sarah’s household. Note that the price listed is roughly what you can expect to find these blenders on sale for. They might go on even cheaper, and they do have higher “full retail prices” via some stores.

Bella Personal-Size Rocket Blender (12-Piece Set)

Typical Price: $36

Let’s start small. Literally. We’ve tested more than a dozen different blenders over the years, from basic to high-powered machines, and this is still our favorite. Perhaps it’s my ability to relate to this pint-size powerhouse, but it really does get the job done.

What I love most about this product is the small cups and the dual blades. It comes with a grinder blade that pulverizes nuts into nut butter. It’s perfect for making homemade dairy-free cheeses and sauces, since it can do the work of a food processor, but in much smaller batches.

The blender blade and cup are great for making smoothies, since we always make our own anyway. And it comes with two cups, so we can each have our own without having to wait for the other person to finish. But this might not be the best option for larger households or batch cooking.

The Best Blenders for Dairy-Free Living on a Budget

Oster Blender Pro 1200 with Glass Jar

Typical Price: $70

I’ve used quite a few $20 to $40 full-size blenders over the years, and really can’t recommend any of them. Special diets require a sturdy machine that can chop, puree, grind, and avoid a melt down. All of the really cheap ones I’ve dealt with started smoking, cracked, or simply stopped working within a few months to a year. At that rate of replacement, the price starts adding up.

So my baseline big blender recommendation is for this Oster. It’s actually quite powerful and well built for a modestly-priced blender. It also boasts various blending functionalities, from pulse to chop to high speed. And it comes with a bonus large smoothie cup. But the coolest part, is their demo video is actually for making dairy-free cashew cream!

The Best Blenders for Dairy-Free Living on a Budget

Ninja Professional Countertop Blender

Typical Price: $100

Despite the reasonable price, this is a high-speed blender that can compete with luxury brands. My husband randomly gifted this blender to me more than a decade ago when he spotted it on a holiday sale for just $80 (he didn’t wait for Christmas!). It’s still going strong. This workhorse has 1100 watts of crushing power, and the model we have includes both a big pitcher and two personal smoothie cups with their own blade.

If you only need a full-size blender, they have a basic Ninja Professional without the extras. But the upgrade to the cups is worth it for small batch dairy-free recipes. I’ve never needed a food processor with this machine in our kitchen. But if you still feel like you need a full-size food processor, they sell a Ninja Blender with Food Processor attachment, too!

The Best Blenders for Dairy-Free Living on a Budget

Instant Pot Ace Blender

Typical Price: $90

Sarah raves about this machine, which blends and cooks all in one spot.

I never had a high-powered blender before; it’s really handy! I also like that you can cook right in the blender. It makes great dairy-free cream soups.

The full retail price is a bit higher for the extra functionality, but it’s usually on sale, and the discounts can be steep.

The Best Blenders for Dairy-Free Living on a Budget

About Author

Alisa is the founder of GoDairyFree.org, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.

6 Comments

  1. I have the Ninja blender and I love using it for so many different recipes. Especially now during the Holidays.

  2. Hi Alisa,

    I am all about blenders! Nice review!

    I have a blender website in which i do all kinds of blender reviews and articles!

    Now, when i was trying to decide which blender i was going to buy for my mother in law, i struggled a lot in between the Ninja BL660 and the Ninja BL770. In the end, i bought the Ninja BL770 because i thought it was a better deal for your money.

    Anyways, the Ninja BL660 is also an amazing machine!

    Have an awesome week!

    V/R

    -Johann

  3. We bought a Ninja Mega Kitchen System about a year ago & it was the best kitchen purchase I have made other than my Kitchen Aid mixer. It is 1500 watts & has a food processor insert, 2 sizes of pitchers & 2 single serve cups. It does everything we need & you can put all the components in the dishwasher except the base. It is big but we found a great spot for it on our counter. We bought it on sale for $200.00 (we are in Canada) & have no regrets. Enjoy your Ninja!

  4. I got a good deal on a Ninja once. But when I got it home, it was huge! It didn’t fit under my kitchen cabinets, either. I was so disappointed. You must have a better spot for one than I did. I wanted something high powered that looked “normal”. So after doing more research, I found the Breville was chosen by America’s Test Kitchen and went with that. It was under $200, maybe $160? I know, still double the price of the Ninja. But still not $500 like some. We’ve been really happy with it and I like that it fits under my cabinet. 😉 It’s the little things…. I love hearing what others love and recommend!

    • I hear you on this! The Ninja we got is actually rather narrow, but it is tall. I was nervous at first that it would be awkwardly placed in the kitchen, since it didn’t fit under the cabinets, but we fortunately found the perfect spot.

      Good to hear about the Breville though – I didn’t realize they had a high power blender, let alone such a highly rated one!