This is a guide to what you need to start juicing.
Juicing is great for many reasons and here are just a few:
Juicing is an excellent way to get your 5 a day. At Passion 4 Juice we think the idea of 5 a day is completely flawed. While the British struggle to get 5 a day the Japanese recommended daily amount is a staggering 17 portions of fruit and veg a day. In Australia the minimum is 7 a day and the Danes aim for six, the French 10, and Canadians are urged to get through between five and 10. The Japanese government, however, now recommends up to 13 portions of vegetables plus four of fruit daily. So if 5 a day is going to give you average health, and average health looks like One in four people with cancer, heart disease, obesity and diabetes rates increasing then we don’t want just average health – we want exceptional health and the easiest way to get nutrient dense fruit and veg is by juicing and making smoothies an everyday way of life.
Juice is quickly and easily absorbed by the body, it’s energy on tap
Antioxidants found in fresh juice are nature’s weapon against ageing
It’s the complete health package, containing vitamins, nutrients, natural sugars and living enzymes
Juice cleanses the body of toxins and boosts the immune system
Fresh pressed juice contains living enzymes, vital for health and well-being
It tastes great!
If you are new to juicing – perhaps start with a juice machine that is easy to use and clean. Juicers come in lots of different types and in a massive range of prices, too. If you prefer to blend the juice/fruit with ice to make it cooler we recommend going for a good blender.
What do you need to start your home juice bar?
A question we get asked a lot is what’s the difference between masticating juicer, centrifugal juicer and a cold pressed juicer?
Centrifugal juicers are the more affordable juicer. An upright design in which food is pushed into a rapidly spinning mesh, like a micro grater with sharp teeth on its floor, shredding the food whilst the juice is spun to the edge of the mesh filter. The juice is then funneled out into the jug whilst the pulp is ejected into a separate chamber.
Masticating juicers normally have a horizontal design although new clever designs are also vertical and use gravity to help feed juice through gears that crush the fruit and veg. Pieces of fruits and vegetables are pushed into the top of the tube, and they are crushed and squeezed by the auger (corkscrew, borer). Juice will drain out of the underside of the chamber and the pulp is then squeezed out at the end of the tube. Masticating juicers have the ability to juice leafy greens and the juice they produce will last much longer than juice made in a centrifugal juicer. They make a delicious juice and are required if you wish to juice sprouted greens like wheatgrass.
Cold-pressed juicer refers to juice that uses a hydraulic press to extract juice from fruit and vegetables, as opposed to other methods such as centrifugal or single auger. The process of high pressure processing or HPP allows the juice to be stored for about 30 days. Cold-pressed juicers are at the top end of the price range.
How much do I need to spend to get a great model, and what other features should I be looking for?
You can pick up a cheap juicer for around £30, although here at www.passion4juice.com we have looked at the cheaper options and they don’t juice too well. If you decide you want to really get juicing we think a good juicer will cost around £100 - £150. You can pick up a good second hand juicer on eBay, yard sales or car boots. The more expensive models can cost more than £300. Blenders range from again around £40 but for a good quality one you are looking at spending about £200 - £400. Here at Passion 4 Juice we want you to begin juicing so buying a little blender or juicer to start off is great. They won’t munch their way through leafy greens but a juicer or blender in your kitchen means you on the road to a healthier lifestyle. A lifestyle adding vitamins and minerals to your body, as well as getting up 16 of your five a day.
When buying a juicer look for a feeding chute that will fit a whole apple in the top. If the chute is smaller than that it will mean you will spend more time cutting up fruit and veg and it will give you a reason not to use it. Also looking for the highest revs per minute RPM will mean the greater the power and the more able it is to cope with everyday use. Also consider how easy it is to clean. The easier it is to clean, the more you are likely to use it. Also consider the quality of the juice and how long you are likely to need to store juice. If you want to batch juice once a week and store in the fridge then you are better off getting a masticating juicer.
So what do you buy?
The best juicer is the one you will use. There is no one size fits all when it comes to machines. But be sure that whatever you buy, keep it out on your bench. If you put it away in a cupboard then you wont use it!
The Breville Juice Fountain or as it is also known in the UK, The Sage Nutri Juicer is the best we have found for domestic use and is readily available over the internet and department stores for around £199.. It is dishwasher proof and has a large feeding chute. This means you do not have to cut up all the ingredients into small pieces – therefore less preparation time. Ideally you will also need a blender for soft fruits. Don’t be fooled by fancy names – a smoothie maker is simply just a blender. Remember blender needs to be able to cope with ice.
For those who want to get serious – the best juicer ever made is the Green Star twin gear slow juicer. Yes it does take more preparation time but it is the best juicer if you want to juice sprouts, wheatgrass, kale and other leafy greens. You can really taste the difference as well.
The Nutribullet is a mini-blender and NOT a juicer. It’s a small blender, with a blending jug that doubles as a cup or bottle. – Fine for blending small quantities at a time. It’s a single serving of smoothie maker. There are lots of copies of the Nutribullet and they are all very similar. But the Nutribullet comes with a good warranty, recipe books and a good guarantee. They are okay for one person but if you want to use them for bliss balls and nut milks they do tend to break easily.
The Sage Nutri Juicer Plus is a well-loved juicer in the juicing community. Fast and powerful and has an extra-large feed chute for superfast juicing. Which Magazine give it a best buy review.
Optimum is a high quality, cold press juicer, is priced well at £199 and comes with a 10 year warranty. It is easy to clean and produces a lovely juice that can be stored in glass in the fridge for a few days.
Hurom is a masticating juicer at the top end of the price range. A super all-rounder and is also a capable to juice wheatgrass. What is also great about the Hurom is the ability to produce raw nut milks in minutes from a combination of pre-soaked nuts and water! It is usually priced around £379 - £399.
Blendtec are a super-fast, blender. Maybe the best blender on the market and great for commercial use.. The Blendtec 2 prong blades spin at 29,000 rpm so pretty much can blend anything. It has a digital display, with a number of different functions to create a smoothie, soup, sauces and purees. At the top end of the price range at around £700 the Blendtec may be expensive but it truly is a marvellous machine.
I have been making juice and smoothies for 31 years. In that time I have tried and tested many juices and blenders. Some stayed with me for years and some didn’t last beyond the first nut milk test. I have been asked many times about my opinion of juicing equipment, especially blenders. I discovered the Thermomix 2 years ago after breaking my Vitamix making nut butters, bliss balls and other delicious raw food. I have broken several jugs before as the blades tend to loosen. This time motor burnt out. I had enough. Then I discovered the Master of all blenders – a blender that could cook. The Thermomix replaces 12 appliances plus the blender. It has been 50 years of German research and engineering, so I know it would be built to last. I knew I was in heaven and that this was going to be a lifetime investment.
I thought I would share with you all the benefits and features that Thermomix has over and above other blenders. This may help guide your purchase or support your role as an advisor if you get asked this question. I seemed to get asked it a lot so here is a long list you can share.
Firstly you can remove the blades on the Thermomix. I find it impossible to clean under the blades on other blenders. If the blades do come out (this is very rare and only with an old Breville blender) then they never tighten up again and seem to break soon after. The gunk that collects under and around the seal is obvious on the Thermomix and it is great that you can give it a good clean in the dishwasher. The 50 years of research and development behind the blades has won Thermomix several patents. The 4 different shapes and 4 heights on the blades make it brilliant for small and big things. By altering the speed you can change the size of ingredients if you are chopping as well.
The Thermomix is so easy to clean, and with the stainless steel as opposed to plastic you don’t get any odour transfer. You can be grinding coffee one minute, nut porridge the next, or steaming so Asian dumplings. It is incredibly versatile and offers the capability of 12 other appliances – that is so many creative, versatile functions that a normal blender doesn’t offer.
I love that the temperature can be controlled at 37 degrees. This is perfect for raw food enthusiasts. Some blenders warm ingredients using friction but you can never quite know how hot it is getting. The temperature settings on the new TM5 go up in 5 degree intervals and this is not only good for raw food but also can be set at 98 degrees for simmering. This is perfect for healing tonics like linseed tea (refer to blog and recipes on the www.passion4juice.com website for more information) Imagine a blender that can also make healthy jam and syrups – I told you I was in heaven.
The Thermomix also has a reverse function so if you wish to mix but not chop and blend this is a brilliant function. This is relevant especially when cooking with delicate textures. For example if you are making a sweet potato curry you can keep some texture chunky and some smooth. The blades are sharp on one side and blunt on the reverse. This is masterful German engineering. The motor is a reluctance motor so it has no cogs, belts or wheels that can burn out of brake. This means it is service free and simply miles ahead of any other blender I have ever used. Many blenders still use technology that is over 20 years old. The power of the Thermomix is fantastic. The texture I can achieve for my bliss balls is fine and even. The nut milk texture is excellent. It keeps in the fridge longer, is creamier and emulsified perfectly so it doesn’t separate.
The Thermomix is very energy efficient. I have run mine for 3 days on solar panels in my motorhome. That was 3 meals plus smoothies for a family of four, for 3 days before needing to recharge. The Thermomix also has built in scales. The lid locking system makes it very child friendly. I have made the mistake of not putting a lid on securely in a blender before and had contents spraying every work surface, even the ceiling.
I was extremely impressed with the ability of the TM31 model but now the TM5 blows my mind. The ability to do guided cooking via recipe chip, digital recipes and digital cookbooks leaves other food processors and kitchen appliances far behind. With a touch screen and single knob control anyone, even my 5 year old can make a perfect green smoothie.
I love the Thermomix so much it is a vital part of the Passion 4 Juice team in both the UK and Australia. We use it for juicing, smoothies, nut butters, salads, waffle batter, sauces and so much more. It is a powerful, reliable, and versatile part of the team.
Where to store your juicer:
The best location for your juice machine is in plain view… next to your kettle! Once that machine is in the cupboard you have one more reason to not juice daily!
What basics in spices and herbs do you need to keep in your store cupboard to add to juices?
Ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, parsley, garlic, turmeric, chili, cardamom, fennel, coriander. Check out our blog on spices to discover what these herbs and spices can do for you.
What basics in frozen fruits do you need to start smoothie making?
You can buy some fantastic frozen fruits now. We don’t recommend the frozen smoothie fruits as they are really expensive for what they are. You can freeze your own fruits from your garden, gooseberries, peeled apple, peeled pears can all be easily frozen and then blended into a smoothie, but if you are in a hurry there are some great finds. Raspberries, blueberries, mango and pineapple are all good value. There is even frozen chili, parsley and coriander that can all be blended in a smoothie.
Juicing Advice from Passion 4 Juice
Here are Passion 4 Juice we feel the best way to use a juicer is to juice your veg and eat your fruit. This will help stop the sugar spike. Look at creating your own recipes with a good mix of veg and a little fruit. Don’t be afraid to juice everything from a fennel bulb to a runner bean. Remember that when drinking a juice your sugar levels can spike if drunk too fast. Take your time over a juice, like you do with a meal. We offer a great recipe book on juicing at www.passion4juice.com. A glass a day of a cocktail of vegetables will supercharge the body, giving instant energy and wellbeing. Packing your body with vitamin and minerals.
Detoxing and juice fasts
Drinking nothing but juice for a period of 3 – 5 days is great if you’re looking to get cleansed, detoxed, and lose weight.
We spend a lot of energy digesting and absorbing food. When you fast your body has a chance to put all energy into cleansing. As soon as you start your fast your body will take the opportunity to clean out toxins that have accumulated in your cells and organs. By giving your body the chance to release a lifetime of toxic waste you will feel lighter, brighter, clearer and more energetic.
There are a few tips to bear in mind if you are considering doing a fast.
Firstly, make sure you drink plenty of water. Toxins will only get reabsorbed into your system if you don’t flush them out with plenty of water. 4 – 6 pints per day of warm filtered water will help.
Secondly, try different recipes and have a few favourites. Don’t by scared to substitute something you don’t like. It is very normal to get headaches and feel unwell on day 2 – 4 of a juice fast so plenty of water will help. Also some gentle movement, lots of sleep and colonic therapy is excellent for releasing toxic build up. If you feel like you are going to give in and have solid food, make yourself an extra juice – but stay on the juice!
If you find it difficult to do a juice fast while also coping with family pressure, preparing meals for young children etc. then perhaps a detox retreat is for you. They are a great way to escape the normal routine and surround yourself with likeminded people all going through the same thing.
Start each day off by juicing 1/2 lemon (peeled) and mix it with a pint of warm water. This will help to cleanse your digestive system and give you a good boost of energy. It is also good for getting a sluggish digestive system moving first thing in the morning.
Prepare ahead of time and buy enough produce to keep you going the week. Visit your local farmers market or wholesale fruit and veg shop and buy in bulk. It will save you time and money. The last thing you want to be doing on a juice fast is going anywhere near the temptation of a supermarket.