Juicer Types: The Difference Between Cold Press Juicers vs. Centrifugal Juice Extractors

All juicers are not created equal.

It's entirely possible that you're curious about buying a juicer. In case you haven't heard, juicing is trending. We're not talking about the Barry Bonds type of juicing, but the Jack LaLanne type. Recent claims have promised that drinking fresh-pressed juices can help you lose weight, boost immunity, prevent cancer and cleanse your system. Whether that's entirely true remains to be seen, but it can't hurt, right?

We're food editors, so we obviously don't hate food enough to go on a full-on juice cleanse. But it would be nice to incorporate those health benefits into our diet -- you know, to clean out all the totchos and doughnuts in there. The only problem is deciding which juicer to buy.

Unless you're a millionaire who can afford the original Norwalk hydraulic press juicer for $2,495, there are two basic types of options on the market for you:

1. Centrifugal Juice Extractors
Traditionally, this is the most common type of juicer. These typically utilize a fast-spinning metal blade that spins against a mesh filter, separating juice from flesh via centrifugal force. The juice and pulp are then separated into different containers. The problem with centrifugal juicers is that the fast-spinning metal blade generates heat, which destroys some of the enzymes in the fruits and vegetables you're juicing. The heat also oxidizes those nutrients, rendering less nutritious juice than a cold-press juicer.

We tried the Breville Juice Fountain Elite, $299.95 at Williams-Sonoma

2. Cold Press Juicers (a.k.a. Masticating Juicers)
These newer juicers extract juice by first crushing and then pressing fruit and vegetables for the highest juice yield. Because they don't produce as much heat, they keep more of the fresh ingredients' nutrients intact. This is closer to what you'll get (but NOT the same) from a BluePrint type of cleanse.

We tried the Breville Juice Fountain Crush, $399.95 at Williams-Sonoma

The Breakdown
After testing the juicers and doing some research, here's what we found:

The gist:

Buy a centrifugal juicer if:
-- You use the juice mostly for cooking, baking or other processes where heat will eventually be applied
-- You're not picky about getting maximum nutrients
-- You're trying to save cash

Buy a slow press juicer if:
-- You're into cleansing, making nut milks and green juices, and you like fresh juice
-- You want to pack the most nutrients into your body as possible
-- You don't mind spending a few extra bucks

Happy juicing!

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Clarification: Language has been added to this article to indicate that while masticating juicers do produce some heat, that amount is negligible in comparison to centrifugal juicers.

Here's how to incorporate that juice into some delicious smoothies:

Strawberry, Banana And Almond Butter Smoothie

Summer Smoothie Recipes

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