There are several types of juicers to choose from (more on those in How we picked), and even within the same type, different machines don’t always handle soft fruits, hard roots, and leafy greens equally well. Ultimately, we found single-auger slow juicers to be the best all around, and our picks reflect that. But which one you choose may depend on what type of juice you want to make. Our top pick was the best all around, but our runner-up makes smoother green juice, and our budget pick is best for juicing hard roots and fruits like carrots and apples.
Also, we realize that $300-plus is a lot to spend on a small appliance, but we’ve found that paying a bit more for your machine up front is worth doing. Juicing is a costly habit no matter how you do it. Although the initial investment on our pick is high, you won’t be throwing money out with partially extracted, soggy pulp. You can also check eBay and Craigslist for used juicers, especially Omegas and Huroms, because they’ve been around a while. A lot of people sell their machines after realizing they’re not ready to give up the money, counter space, or time required to make juice regularly. You won’t be able to take advantage of the warranty, but you can get really good deals (and even resell yours if you get tired of it).
The size of these two containers will help determine how much juice you can make. Some juicers such as the Juiceman JM400 Classic 2 Speed Juicer have a juice pitcher that is less than 1 liter while the pulp container is less than 1.5 liters. Some juicers offer much larger containers such as the Breville JE98XL Juice Fountain Plus 850-Watt Juice Extractor and Cuisinart CJE-1000 Die-Cast Juice Extractor.
These are also manual citrus juicers. They have an arm on left/right side that you have to pull down to force the juice out of the fruit. The mechanism is quite simple. You put a half-cut fruit on the bottom squeezing part and then use the handle to pull down the top squeezing part onto that forcefully to press the juice out. The arms are mostly made out of metal and on some low-cost models they can break with undue force. They are also known as citrus presses because there is no reaming action involved in it.
The Slowstar has a proprietary “Duoblade” auger, which has two cutting edges to chop and crush more with each rotation than single edges can. The motor uses a three-gear system that allows it to turn slowly but with plenty of torque; in our testing, we found that this translates to low-temperature juice with maximum yields from even low-moisture greens like kale.
Regardless of which type you choose, there's one for you on our list. For our best centrifugal juicer, we chose the Breville JE98XL Juice Fountain, for its high quality, convenient wide-mouth chute, and outstanding reviews. Our favorite masticating juicer is the Omega J8006, for its quality and incredible versatility in terms of how many different things you can make with it. Our budget-friendly pick goes to the Hamilton Beach (67601A) Juicer, which is a great option for anyone who wants a solid juicer with all the necessary features without breaking the bank.
We invested 96 hours in testing and evaluating juicers, measuring the amount of juice versus pulp each produced, the amount of froth created, and how much prep work was needed to get fruits and vegetables to fit through the food chute. In some cases, we had to spend quite a bit of time chopping hard produce into small- or medium-sized pieces, while other juicers had chutes so big we could simply cut an average apple, orange or beet into quarters. We also evaluated how much pressure we needed to exert to push fruits and vegetables through the juicer.
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.