How to Pick the Best Masticating Juicer?
To the uninitiated, a juicer is an extractor for liquids from vegetables and fruits. But there’s more to juicers than meets the eye. For one thing, there are different types of juicers that operate on distinct systems. Moreover, the type of juicer that will work well for you would depend on what your particular preferences are. And as usual for every type there are high-end products to choose from. The best masticating juicer would typically be capable of extracting not only vegetables and fruits but wheatgrass and leafy greens with ease as well. But some of them also do much more...
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One important thing that you should know about is that masticating juicers typically fall under two categories: dual stage single gear and low speed. And the latter is also used interchangeably with the term masticating juicer.
The former has one gear with a two-step juice process to ensure the juicer is able to extract as much juice as possible from the produce being juiced. It first extracts the juice, then combines the juice and pulp and extracts it again. Like this the juice quality yielded by this type of juicer is smoother and more nutritious with a much drier pulp. So compare to other type of juicers, such as centrifugal juicers, you end up extracting more juice for the amount of fresh produce you use.
The low speed juicer on the other hand has one juicing process that starts immediately after the produce has been dropped into the feed chute. It crushes vegetables and fruits releasing the juice right away. The feedback on low speed juicers is very positive for certain brands. Based on Omega juicer reviews, for instance, the Omega 8003 and the Omega 8006 are the best buys. No wonder why they are bestsellers in their low speed masticating juicer category.
What Makes the Best Slow Juicer?
There are some factors you may want to consider before purchasing a masticating juicer, also referred to as slow juicer, especially if it happens to be your first. The low speed a.k.a slow process protects and maintains healthy enzymes and prevents oxidation of fresh produce pushing the life of the refrigerated juice to 72 hours. This type of processing system is able to extract the maximum amount of juice. Moreover, masticating juicers, for those who can't afford twin-gear juicers, are the best choice for juicing wheatgrass and other fibrous greens.
While centrifugal juicers may be the better option if you only intend to juice a wide variety of raw produce with speed, a masticating juicer is capable of performing other tasks such as grinding nuts and meat, extruding pasta and more.
What to Consider While Picking out The Best Slow Juicer?
You would want a juicer with a wide feed chute to accommodate larger pieces of vegetables and whole fruits. And while this feature is hardly a major deal breaker, it does cut down on the time that will be spent on dicing, chopping or slicing of the produce prior to juicing. If prep time is your Waterloo when it comes to juicing, pick a masticating juicer with a wide feed tube, preferably one that measures three inches or more.
Select a juicer that has a sturdy construction including a stable base. This ensures that your juicer doesn’t wobble, “walk” across your kitchen’s countertop or do anything which will jeopardize the juicing process and prove to be a hazard. Additionally, a juicer that has a solid build to it will have parts that are easy to clean, dishwasher-safe, and have few, if at all, areas where food particles could get stuck.
Masticating juicers are considered the gold standard for high-quality performing juicers but they can be hefty in size. Most of them have horizontal footprints (except Omega VERT juicers and Hurom H-100, see below) and may prove to be space hogs so know beforehand where you will put it on a more-or-less permanent basis since lifting it can make you sweat big time (depending on the model, they weight between 15 lbs to 25 lbs).
Are They Easy to Clean Juicers?
Although when you're juicing your main concern and wish is to obtain the best quality juice possible from a juicer, but if you're looking for an easy to clean juicer you should be aware that internal baskets for pulp of the masticating juicers are more difficult to clean and empty. The container that collects ejected pulp in centrifugal juicers have usually does not exist in these juicers.
Omega Juicers Are Some of The Best on The Market
Omega being one of the leading juicer producers manufactures both top notch masticating and centrifugal models but we will limit ourselves reviewing their best masticating juicers in this article.
This type of masticating juicers use single augers to crush and compact vegetables, leaves and fruits into smaller chunks before squeezing their juices out against a static screen and expelling their pulp through another separate outlet.
They are also capable of doing more than juicing. See image on the right ==>
Omega Juicer 8006
One of the best examples of an efficient and reliable masticating juicer is the Omega Model 8006 Nutrition Center HD. Engineered with an 80 RPM speed capacity (low speed), the Omega Juicer 8006 builds up minimal heat and oxidation which results in retention of nutrients, phytochemicals, and other healthy enzymes in juices that have longer shelf/refrigeration life. Although it's really advisable for many reasons to drink your juice within minutes, this type of juicing allows juice to be stored up to 72 hours without degradation while juices obtained with a centrifugal juicer should be drank right away and cannot be preserved more than 24 hours in the fridge.
This juicer is Omega’s latest masticating juicer model with a single horizontal gear.
Make no mistake about something: The Omega Juicer 8006 and its cousin, the Omega 8004, have the same features and their only difference is their color; the former comes in white and the latter in black and chrome. So both of them are capable of not only juicing vegetables, fruits, and wheatgrass but also to grind, mince, chop, extrude pasta and soy milk, and make baby food and nut butters. So we can confidently say that this masticating juicer is a multi-tasking kitchen equipment. What a great investment for under $300!
Is Omega Vert Juicer for You?
Omega manufactures vertical masticating juicers as well (VERT or VRT is short for vertical).
Omega VRT350 has a compact base and small vertical footprint taking up less space on the countertop. This model is a slow dual stage juicer meaning that it extracts juice by first crushing the fruit, leaf or vegetable. Then, before the pulp is ejected, the pulp is squeezed during the second pressed stage resulting in a higher yield of juice and an extremely dry pulp. Again the low speed of this mastication juicer limits froth and foam preventing oxidation of the juice. It comes with a pusher to push ingredients into the juicer and is easy to assemble. It features two spouts and two 64-ounce containers, one collects the juice and the other ejected dry pulp. This versatile juicer is also easy to clean, just pour some water through the chute to self-clean in-between ingredients.
Omega Vertical Juicing System VSJ843R is the newest, lowest speed vertical masticating juicer in Omega's offering. Its sleek modern design is compact with a small footprint (approximately 8” wide, 8.5” deep & 15.5” high). Its motor rotates at 43 revolutions per minute, approximately 50% the speed of the original vertical masticating (low speed) juicers, extracting more juice and breaking down fiber to obtain a smoother nutrient-dense juice. Like all the other Omega models has automatic pulp ejection feature making juicing continuous. This one though features an innovative auto-cleaning system minimizing the clean-up process.
Omega VERT Slow Juicer VSJ843Q is the square model of VSJ843R and has all the features the former one has.
We cannot conclude without mentioning the legendary 15 Year Omega Warranty for these products. Even Vitamix does not offer that much warranty (their maximum is 7 years.)
The Hurom HU-100 and Other Masticating Juicer Types
The Hurom HU-100 is another masticating juicer worth looking into. This model uses its patented slow squeezing technology and cold-pressing system. This one also operates at only 80 RPMs like the Omega Juicer 8006 we examined above, retaining heat-sensitive nutrients such as Vitamins A and C, and live enzymes in the juice during the process. This one too can process a variety of raw fruits, vegetables, nuts, leafy greens, wheatgrass and soybeans operating in two stages for extraction: crushing produce and squeezing the maximum amount of juice from its pulp which results in a drier pulp. This is a compact vertical masticating juicer (approximately 10"wide x 7" deep x 16" high) like Omega VERT juicers we reviewed above. This silent elegant juicer comes in white, black and silver finish and offers a 10-year warranty.
And Now Comes the Triple Stage Extraction
To summarize, a masticating juicer has benefits for those who juice or want to juice a variety of vegetables and fruits. Unlike a centrifugal juicer that can have herbs flying out of it because of the accelerated rotational speed, a masticating juicer will crush and press these herbs until they become juice in form. And a masticating juicer can do so without making any audible noise.
Additionally, the masticating juicer’s slow operating procedure of extraction prevents it from possible overheating which may cause its parts to break down prematurely. This juicer, as mentioned, produces a higher yield with less pulp that is also much drier; it also produces less foam. But if you want a twin gear masticating juicer that has a triple stage of extraction, you should consider the Green Star Elite Jumbo Twin Gear Juicer.
Upgraded from the original model with two juicing steps, the crushing and squeezing stages, the Elite ups the ante with the rubbing and mixing stage in which the produce undergoes rubbing and mixing after being crushed but before being squeezed. This is to easily “open” the cellular membranes of the produce increasing the nutritional value of the juice to its maximum. Apparently, this process has a pending patent and is available only in the Elite model. Greenstar's complete mastication system is pricier than Omega juicers and Hurom, but well worth it...
There are many models of masticating juicers to choose from, as mentioned and discussed here, but ultimately make sure to base your decision on your particular or immediate needs. Regardless of which masticating juicer brand you choose, however, remember that the best juicing can only come from the best juicer. Happy juicing!