Everyone from Wall Street bankers to Beyoncé is talking about juice cleanses, but registered dietitian Emily Braaten urged us to be wary: “There is no substantial scientific evidence to support the use of freshly squeezed juice for ‘cleansing’ purposes. Humans rely on the liver and the kidneys to separate out potentially toxic byproducts of metabolism.” The National Institutes of Health (NIH) point out that each of your kidneys “is made up of about a million filtering units” that remove about one to two quarts of waste and extra fluid a day via your urine. In other words, your body already has the whole detox thing covered.
Juicing is an amazing way to get loads of hard-to-come-by micronutrients and natural enzymes into your system, all while lessening the workload for your digestive system. Producing this juice means chopping, slicing, and squeezing your fruits and veggies into tiny little pieces to release to the most juice possible. When you are dealing with such small food particles, you will quickly find they have a strong tendency to get stuck in cracks and crevasses.
When it comes to features, the Omega J8006 Masticating Juicer is in a different league — starting with the way it actually produces juice. According to the manufacturer, rapidly spinning blades damage valuable oxidants and enzymes. The powerful, slow-speed auger in the Omega prevents this. It also delivers considerably more force, so fruit and vegetables are squeezed once as they enter the machine, and then the pulp is squeezed a second time – which maximizes goodness and minimizes waste.
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.
For its smart design and features, as well as the brand moniker, the Breville 800CPXL is no doubt a desirable item to have on the countertop in an orange juice loving family’s kitchen, or in a small juice bar. It actually makes sense to have one along with a centrifuge or masticator, because when you only need citrus juice, cleanup is so much easier on the 800CPXL.
The gist: For those looking to get the most out of their leafy greens, the Lexen GP27 is the way to *manually* do just that. This juicer is the solution for those that don't want to lay out hundreds for an expensive masticating juicer, but also don't want to settle for a cheap, crummy manual model. As the folks at The Healthy Juicer say, this thing was designed to be "simple, mobile, versatile, and easy to clean." Simple is right. To use, just put a put a juice cup under the spout, place your greens into the chute, and start churning. Cleaning this thing is a breeze, since all you have to do is unscrew the parts, rinse them off in the sink, and boom—you're done. Thanks to its high juice-yield and cold-press technology, you can rest assured your greens will be nutrient-packed to the max.
Before you even glance at any of the products sold in the market today, you need to be able to differentiate between the two types of juicers. Centrifugal juicers are the most affordable in the market. These typically have a metal blade that whirls around to cut the fruits and veggies and then spins the pieces to extract the juice from the pulp. Centrifugal juicers are usually cheaper, fast, easy to use, and easy to clean. However, they also have a lower juice yield, generates more foam (lessens the juice’s shelf life), and are generally not good at juicing leafy greens.
Easy to use: In our experience, the size of a juicer’s feed tube makes the biggest difference when it comes to ease. The smaller the feed tube, the more time you need to prep your produce—kale needs to be cut into thinner, more manageable strips, large apples can’t be cut into simple wedges, and those fat carrots need to be quartered lengthwise instead of simply halved. During the course of a busy morning, those minutes can really add up, so we looked for juicers with larger tubes.
Whereas the Omega J8004 is a commercial-quality machine, the Omega NC800 is designed for household use. When it came to green juice, the output was almost identical. The carrot juice was a different story, though. The NC800 yielded only 12.3 ounces. John Kohler at DiscountJuicers.com said that this machine put out 15 percent more juice than its predecessor, but we found that it actually put out 25 percent less carrot juice than the J8004. The nice feature of this juicer is that it boasts a larger feed tube than its predecessor, which makes prep a little easier.
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Assembling this machine is relatively straightforward, as most of the parts go in a logical location and are easy to click in and out of place. This machine does have an extra piece beneath the filter bowl that we have not seen on any other machine – a black ring, which Cuisinart's manual refers to as the "foam management filter disk." Considering that this machine produces little froth, we can assume this part does its job well. Some grater baskets are difficult to insert or remove, but this one goes on and off easily while still feeling secure.
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.
After pushing almost 40 pounds of leafy, crunchy, pulpy produce through nine juicers, we think the Tribest Slowstar is the best and most versatile machine for home use. It yielded more juice than nearly every other model we tested while keeping foam and temperature increases to a minimum. It comes with a 10-year warranty on parts, so you can crank it up every day without worrying about wear and tear.
In our tests, the Hamilton Beach juicer produced lots of juice for each of our three test recipes. It handled hard and soft produce well, though it could have processed the leafy greens slightly better. Even so, it produced a high juice yield compared to other products after straining away the froth. This juicer does leave a lot of pulp in your juice, which is great if you’re looking to up your fiber intake. Unlike some others, the Hamilton Beach doesn’t come with a pitcher to collect your juice. Its nozzle also points directly down, so find the right container to catch your juice and prevent spills.
Centrifugal juicers are also not as efficient as masticating juicers in terms of generating yield. The pulp that comes out of centrifugal juicers is still relatively wet which means that less of the juice is extracted. You cannot count on centrifugal juicers to extract high yields of juice from high-fiber leafy greens like wheat-grass, spinach, and lettuce.
The width of the chute will determine how much prep time you’ll need. A wide feed chute means less chopping time which means less total time spent juicing. Some of our top picks have at least a 3-inch wide feed chute such as the Breville JE98XL Juice Fountain Plus 850-Watt Juice Extractor, Breville 800JEXL Juice Fountain Elite 1000-Watt Juice Extractor, and Cuisinart CJE-1000 Die-Cast Juice Extractor.