In our testing, we focused on making green juice from 8 ounces each of curly kale and green grapes. This test showed us how each machine handled both soft fruit and tough greens. Fibrous greens are hard to break down, and a high-quality juicer will squeeze more juice from leaves than cheaper models. Soft fruit, like seedless grapes, is a challenge for juicers for the opposite reason—it lacks the fiber that helps the juicer pull the fruit completely through the chamber, and can gum up the works.
Though some buyers have complained about fussy assembly, I didn’t have any trouble taking the VSJ843 apart or putting it back together. None of the parts were fidgety or stuck to each other; everything locked into place and unlatched easily. The machine comes with a 15-year warranty on the motor and parts, which means you can juice with confidence for a very long time.
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.
In more expensive juicers, such as the Super Angel Juicer, higher quality materials such as surgical-grade stainless steel are used. These types of masticating juicers also feature slightly different augers, that are closer in appearance to a car’s transmission. These twin gear systems are interlocked and are much more efficient in grinding up fruits and vegetables. However, the price tags on these juicers are considerably higher as well.
Accessories include a 2-liter pulp container that makes it easy to discard unwanted pulp and a 1-quart juice pitcher for collecting juice to serve at the breakfast table or to store in the refrigerator for later. The unit's removable parts clean up easily by hand or in the dishwasher, and a cleaning brush comes included. Housed in die cast and stainless steel, the juice extractor measures approximately 15-2/5 by 11-4/5 by 19 inches.
The Tribest Solostar 4 is a horizontal juicer, like our budget pick, the Omega J8004. It has a slightly squatter body and a marginally smaller footprint, but compared with that Omega model, the pricier Tribest Solostar produced smoother juice but at a significantly slower pace. The whole juicing assembly on the Tribest wiggled in a tight circular motion while the motor was running, and gave a bit every time we pushed produce through the feed tube (we tested two different units of the same model).
Another important consideration is where you plan to store your juicer and how easily you’ll want to access it. While horizontal-masticating juicers can churn out high volumes of juice, you may not have space for them. Plus, they tend to weigh more so tend to be difficult to move from closet to counter. The small footprint of vertical juicers is ideal for smaller kitchens with limited counter space and can often tuck under cabinets. Lightweight centrifugal models are perfect if you need to move your juicer from storage space to counter. Just make sure whatever model you pick can handle the volume of juice you plan to make: smaller juicers equal smaller amounts of juice per batch.