This machine has a very pleasant look to it and offers a more sophisticated spout than most of the electric juicers we considered. You can adjust it for the speed of juice flow. You remove the lid by pressing your thumb down on a spring-loaded button. This design is different from any of the other juicers and gives it a sophisticated look. The juicer lid is the only one that operates on a hinge. We like this feature as it allows you to keep the lid open, hands-free, when cleaning or leave it open to air-dry after washing.
Citrus juicers are an entirely different breed type of juicers. These juicers are designed specifically for the juicing of citrus fruits such as lemons, limes, oranges, and grapefruits. These juicers are often much less expensive than masticating or centrifugal juicers but are also much less versatile. Many citrus juicers are manual press juicers, where a lever-type arm is clamped down on top of a half of a citrus fruit, which is first positioned on a sharp pointed like form. The press applies pressure on the fruit, which is squeezed down onto the sharp, cone-line device. This cone-like device presses into the center of the fruit, driving the innards outwards.
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The vertical masticating Omega VRT400HDS was disappointing. The first trial of the green juice was a failure; the auger couldn’t pull anything through. I disassembled it, cleaned it, and put it back together and finally got it to work. Its yields were low compared with that of other juicers and the machine felt really flimsy, almost buckling as I pushed leaves of kale and apple wedges through the feed tube. It produced the most foam of all the juicers in the testing group, even more than the centrifugal juicers. It does, however, come with a 15-year warranty.
We tested the Omega juicer in our kitchen to see how it fared against all sorts of vegetables and fruits, including everything from carrots and beets to apples and pineapple. No matter what we fed into the juicer, it produced a ton of juice with very little effort. The pulp collected quickly in one bin, while juice mounted up in the other. This juicer is very easy to use, even for a novice.
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Make sure your juicer suits your lifestyle in terms of how quickly, and how loudly they work. Masticating juicers are much quieter than centrifugal juicers so household members remain undisturbed while you get your juice on. If you need to make your juice fresh and fast in the morning, speed may be a concern. Masticating juicers are slower while some centrifugal juicers can juice an apple in just 30 seconds. Juicer models with multiple speeds are helpful because they extract the most juice out of your produce. Slow speeds are great for juicing soft fruits, like grapes and strawberries, while high speeds are better for firmer items like apples and carrots.
Reasonable footprint: Juicers can be rather in-your-face appliances, depending on size and noise level. The small footprint of vertical juicers is ideal for smaller kitchens with limited counter space. The oval bases hover around 7 to 8 inches in diameter. You can tuck a vertical juicer into a corner quite easily, though they are generally tall (about 16 to 18 inches) and require cabinet clearance. Because horizontal juicers can hog a lot of space, we preferred vertical juicers.
Omega’s newest vertical masticating cold juicer the VSJ843 is a great choice if you plan to juice leafy greens often and want easy clean up and easy storage. Standing at a squat 15.5 inches, this quiet and low profile juicer will easily fit under low-hanging cabinets or tuck away in a closet too. It’s also available in several colors and two different shapes to suit your style. This juicer’s large feed tube and auger work faster than other masticating juicers and easily handled all produce types from whole leaves of kale to strawberries, carrots, and apples. We got high yields of perfectly smooth juice with little to no pulp. The auger design also makes it much easier to clean than typical masticating juicers; Omega’s “Easy Clean” feature continually sweeps away pulp as you juice so most surfaces just need a quick rinse in between produce types. It worked quickly and quietly and can also be used to make nut milks, frozen fruit sorbets and smoothies. This model comes with a 15-year warranty and is perfect for frequent quality juicing of leafy greens and other produce with easy cleanup.
The Hurom comes with a lidded pitcher for collecting juice, but its slow-turning auger produced so little splatter that we also had no problem putting our own glass directly under the juice spout. Clean juicing makes for means you’re not beholden to the Hurom’s pitcher, making it easier to juice straight into your to-go cup and reducing counter clean-up. (When we tried this with the Juiceman, we ended up with a foot-wide splatter radius.)
This juicer does not come with a pitcher, which is atypical in the juicing world. Instead, you simply put a glass beneath its spout and let the juice run into it. It also lacks a strainer, so you get plenty of pulp with the liquid. If you want the extra fiber, that’s great. If you prefer a smoother, less-textured drink, you need to use a strainer of your own as well as a pitcher or other container to capture strained juice. The juicer is somewhat noisy and does vibrate, like most, but it stays securely in place due to its nonskid base. In addition, the machine has two clips on either side to hold the lid firmly in place, which is a nice safety feature.
Sometimes called centrifugal juicers, these types use a rapidly whirling disk to cut fruit or vegetables into tiny pieces that are then spun to separate the juice from the pulp. The juice is then strained and it flows into a cup. Some extractors, especially those that require full dismantling, can be difficult to clean. In general, extractors also tend to remove more fiber from your juice than an auger model.
These are also called cold-press or auger-style juicers. These devices have an auger that grinds the produce, breaking down cell walls and releasing the juice, which is then squeezed through a steel screen. Masticating juicers take longer than extractors to produce your cup of juice, but yield more juice and leave more of the nutrients intact. If you like green juices with plenty of leafy, tough greens like kale, you’ll be happiest with this type of juicer. Many can also be used to make nut milk. You’ll pay quite a bit more for a cold-press juicer, however.
The Omega J8004 is the most wallet-friendly juicer of all our picks, and it makes a good, low-pulp juice from hard roots, fruits, and greens. It yielded a good amount of carrot-apple juice, but was middle of the road when it came to green juice. It can also get gummed up by soft fruits like grapes. Because Omega has a 15-year warranty on parts and motors—the longest warranty we’ve seen—we think this machine is a better investment than anything else in its price range. But remember that the cost of under-squeezed produce can add up for lower-yield machines, even though you’ll save money up front.
Auger-style juicers, sometimes referred to as masticating or cold-press juicers, crush and mash the produce. They're typically more expensive, and can also take some getting used to as the augers can jam when grinding tough fruits and veggies. For this reason, every one we tested has a reverse button. The upside with this style is they tend to leave more healthful and fiber-rich pulp in the juice.