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The Nutri Ninja IQ 1500-Watt blender is a complete set of kitchen appliances that can all be tied back to a single base, handling many of the same tasks you’d do separately in one easy-to-use system. But at only $249, can one blender really do all the jobs you need it to without dropping the ball where it matters? Read on to see what it can deliver and then compare it with what we consider to be the best blender for the money and Key Factors & Features to a Good Blender.
Read on in my Nutri Ninja iQ 1500-watt blender review to find out!
Price: $249.00 on AmazonAvailable: October 2016Model: BL682Z/Nutri Ninja iQ
Summary: The Nutri Ninja iQ is a great way to quickly and easily make smoothies in minutes, with a food processor that could sit on the countertops of any professional kitchen. But, its ice crusher needs a lot of work before it’s up to “iced drink” standards, so if you like making a big batch of margaritas on the weekend, you’re better off looking somewhere else. That said, check out the Nutri Ninja BlendMax Duo Auto-iQ blender.
What We Liked
What We Didn’t
The Nutri Ninja Auto iQ Blender system we tested came with one 72oz container with Total Crushing Blades, three single-serve smoothie cups with their own blade attachment, and one 64oz food processor attachment.
The design of the unit is highly utilitarian, with black-on-silver colors that echo what you’ll see on pretty much every other blender in this price class. The LED-lit buttons and LCD display were bright and vibrant enough to see in the middle of the day, and overall the blender was very easy to use and cleanup. All the containers were large enough to hold recipes for big batches of soup, and thanks to the three different cup sizes (18oz, 24oz, and 32oz), we could always make smoothies that were just the right size.
Read More: Best Blender for Smoothies 2019
What was especially great about the iQ cups and their screw-on “Sip and Seal” lids was if we wanted to, we could simply load up a cup with all the ingredients we wanted the night before, stick it in the fridge, and pop it on the blender in the morning. By the time we got into the kitchen to the smoothie being ready, it was about two minutes before we had our keys in hand and were out the door. This is a huge convenience factor for anyone who worries about their health, but also doesn’t have enough time in the morning to dedicate to measuring out their ingredients on the spot.
The Nutri Ninja Auto iQ Blender system uses a 1500-Watt, 2HP motor to puree and pulverize any ingredient you throw inside of it, or at least, that’s supposed to be the idea. For two similar models, check out the Ninja Foodi blender and the Nuwave Moxie blender.
On the standard 72oz pitcher/blade setup made specifically for iced drinks with “Total Crushing Technology,” as Shark puts it, there wasn’t a single blend setting that got us to the point of something that even resembled an iced drink. We tried putting in every ratio of ice-to-mix you could think of, before settling on half ice, half liquid to get the best results. Even still, no matter what we tried, we always got ice that was so fluffy it had re-solidified back into a block or some weird separation of the liquid and the ice that sat undisturbed in random parts of the container.
If you don’t need a high-power blender, then you’ll want to check out these lower-powered models, such as the Oster Pro 1200 and the Hamilton Beach 5814 blender and chopper review.
The crux of this problem looks to exist in the three-tiered blade setup that the Nutri Ninja uses to blend its ingredients. While the ice and drink mix was thoroughly blended, they weren’t actually blended together, something even the most basic units in this category should be able to handle with flying colors. Smoothies made in the 72oz container suffered from the same problems, ending up as chalky, separated messes that still had big chunks of kale floating around when we poured them out to drink.
However, all of these issues evaporated immediately once we switched to the Nutri Ninja iQ cups, which blend ingredients from the bottom up using a single blade, as you might find in a traditional blender. These are reminiscent of the “Magic Bullet” system that caught fire a few years ago, and for smoothies, iced drinks, and soups, this was absolutely the way to go. We made a variety of smoothies containing around 20 different ingredients in total, and no matter what we threw at it (flax seed was the clincher), it blended everything down to a velvety-smooth consistency that was a pleasure to drink. Unfortunately, the largest cup for this style of blending tops out at 32oz, less than half of the 72oz limit set by the larger container.
The food processor attachment was equally as impressive, at times rivaling results that I’ve personally seen in commercial processors that range anywhere from $500 to $1,500. In fact, almost every container except the main 72oz worked perfectly, which makes the addition of the three-tiered blade system all the more confusing in the long run. In that case, you might want to look at the best blender with a glass jar instead.
Make no mistake, even though the Nutri Ninja is ahead of the game when it comes to additional features, it is still insanely loud. Thanks in part to its 2HP motor, the Nutri Ninja registered an ear-splitting 92.3dB on our meter when running cold, and louder still at 103.4dB when we added a smoothie into the mix.
With the Nutri Ninja iQ blending system, you get a sub-par iced drink blender, paired with an awesome Magic Bullet replacement, and a more-than-capable food processor, all for $249.99 out the door. At that price point, it’s difficult to fault the blender for its lack of performance in making margaritas, and as long as those aren’t your staple food, the iQ is easily worth the cost.
Thanks to the inclusion of four additional smoothie cups, which double as their own on-the-go drink holders, this blender system is perfect for anyone who wants to start making more smoothies at home, but doesn’t have extra time in the morning to go through the hassle. You can also read our list of Best Blenders of 2019