Centrifugal Juicer vs Masticating Juicer: Which is Right for You?

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Apricot Apple Carrot Ginger Juice

Are you looking to get a juicer for your home but aren’t sure where to start? You aren’t alone.

Trying to figure out which is the best juicer for you can seem like a pretty daunting task. But there is no need to worry, we’re here to help! No matter what you’re looking to do with your new juicer, we will help you get on the path to finding just the right one.

Before you start looking at different makes and models of juicers, you will need to decide what is the best type of juicer for you.

When it comes to home juicers, there are 2 main types: centrifugal juicers and masticating juicers. These juicers operate in different ways and one isn’t “better” than the other. But depending on what you’re looking to accomplish with your juicer, one will certainly be better for you.

Before we dive into how these juicers work, their pros and cons, and how to decide which is best for you, let’s get the names out of the way. Both centrifugal juicers and masticating juicers can go by several names, so it can become a bit confusing.

Centrifugal Juicer = Fast Juicer = Traditional Juicer = Conventional Juicer

Masticating Juicer = Slow Juicer = Cold Press Juicer

So there you have it. By the end of this article you’ll understand how each name came to be.

Centrifugal Juicers vs Masticating Juicers: How they Operate

The difference in these two juicers is in how they take your luscious greens or ripe fruits and turn them into delicious and nutritious juice. A lot of the explanation can be found in the actual name of the juicers themselves, so let’s start by defining the words used to name these juicers. I don’t know about you, but they aren’t a part of my regular vocabulary.

Centrifugal Juicers

Centrifugal comes from the word centrifuge, which is defined by Dictionary.com as “an apparatus that rotates at high speed and by centrifugal force separates substances of different densities.” So, what does this mean in the context of juicing? It means a centrifugal juicer turns your foods into juice by spinning extremely fast. Most centrifugal juicers spin 6,000 to 16,000 times per minute which is… really fast.  This is how they got the name “fast juicers.” Makes sense, right?

So how does this work?

A centrifugal juicer works by spinning and shredding your fruits and vegetables against a metal screen. The rapid speed separates the juice from your food and this results in 2 things: juice and pulp. Your juice will be put into one container, and the pulp will go into a separate container.

This type of juicing is pretty common and most household juicers are centrifugal juicers. Because of how common they are, they are sometimes referred to as traditional or conventional juicers.

A Centrifugal Juicer

Masticating Juicers

Masticating on the other hand comes from the word masticate. It’s defined by Dictionary.com as “to chew” or “to reduce to a pulp by crushing or kneading.” In the context of juicing, this one is a bit more straight forward. A masticating juicer turns foods into juice by crushing them in a way that’s similar to chewing. These juicers work by having one or multiple augers, or gears, that knead the food. They then press it against a screen to extract the juice. Like a centrifugal juicer, the juice and pulp are separated and sent to different containers.

Relative to centrifugal juicers, these juicers operate much slower with about 80 revolutions per minute (RPM). This “slow” speed is how they got to be called slow juicers.

Aicok Slow Masticating Juicer
A Masticating Juicer

Centrifugal Juicers vs Masticating Juicers: Pros and Cons

Pros of Centrifugal Juicers

–        Juice is produced quickly

–        The food being juiced requires very little prep, thanks to large feeding chutes

–        Centrifugal juicers are typically found at lower price points

Centrifugal juicers are great for many people who want no fuss juicing. The process of using a centrifugal juicer is super quick and relatively easy. It takes only a few seconds to juice a whole apple with a centrifugal juicer.

Cons of Centrifugal Juicers

–        The process produces heat which can damage the nutrients and enzymes in the juice

–        Juice made from a centrifugal juicer needs to be consumed quickly because of oxidation

–        The juice typically will have a foam layer on top

–        These machines can be difficult to clean due to the large strainers

While using a centrifugal juicer is quick and convenient, it does come with some downsides.

Heat is generated from the rapid rotations which can damage the nutrients and enzymes in the juice you’re making. Juice made from a centrifugal juicer will also need to be drank shortly after it’s made. Because of oxidation, juice made from a centrifugal juicer has a very short shelf life. If you plan to do “juice prep” and make juice for a few days at a time, this could be an issue.

Pros of Masticating Juicers

–        The slower process doesn’t generate heat which helps to protect the nutrients and enzymes in the juice

–        Masticating juicers make juice with very little foam

–        Juice made from masticating juicers has a higher shelf life, lasting about 3 days in the refrigerator

Masticating juicers don’t generate much heat during the juicing process. This helps to keep the nutrients and enzymes a bit more intact when compared with a centrifugal juicer. Because no heat is generated, these juicers can also be called “cold press juicers.” So it’s not so much that the process itself is cold, it just doesn’t generate any heat like a centrifugal juicer does.

The juice made from a masticating juicer will have very little pulp or foam in it and can be stored for a few days at a time. This makes these juicers ideal for people who want to juice prep for a couple days at one time. They are also able to get more juice out of leafy greens compared to centrifugal juicers, thanks to the slower process.

Cons of Masticating Juicers

–        Masticating juicers are much slower, so it will take at least 5-10 minutes to make a juice

–        These juicers typically have smaller chutes, so your food will need to be chopped before being loaded into the juicer

–        The price points of these juicers are usually higher

 

The “slow” in slow juicer can be an issue for people who want to juice daily and don’t have a lot of time on their hands. Not only is the actual juicing process slower, the food requires some more preparation. To properly load the food into the smaller chutes, the food needs to be chopped up before loading. If you are usually in a hurry and want to juice frequently, this could be an issue for you.

Choosing the Best Type of Juicer for You

Now that you know some more about how each type of juicer works and some of the pros and cons, let’s dive into which would be a better choice for you. It is not that one type of juicer is “better” than the other, but certainly one will be better for your specific needs. To figure out which one that is, let’s go through a few questions.

What Will You Be Juicing?

a bunch of spinach

Centrifugal and masticating juicers can both juice just about any type of fruit or vegetable. However some will work better than others in the different juicers. Centrifugal juicers work best for hard fruits and vegetables, such as apples and carrots. Masticating juicers can certainly handle hard fruits and veggies with no problem, and also do a great job with softer foods and leafy greens.

If you plan to only juice harder foods, a centrifugal juicer should do the trick. If you plan to juice leafy greens and softer foods frequently, a masticating juicer may be a better choice.

Why Are You Juicing?

What is your motivation behind juicing? Some people juice to make creative fruit juices more for the taste, and some people start juicing to get more greens into their diet. Both are great reasons to get started, however the juicer requirements will be a bit different depending on your motives.

If you are looking to juice more casually and aren’t super worried about the nutrient density of your juice, a centrifugal juicer is a great option.

If you are juicing more for health reasons and want to get all the possible nutrients out of your juice, a masticating juicer would be a better bet.

Do You Want to Juice Prep?

If you want to make juice and save it for later, whether that be a few hours or a few days, a masticating juicer would be a better choice. If you plan to drink your juice shortly after you make it (within about 20 minutes) a centrifugal juicer will work for you. If you try to make juice with a centrifugal juicer and save it for later, it will likely be quite foamy and not as enjoyable.

Top Juicer Picks for Beginners

We have scoured the market to find a couple great options for each masticating juicers and centrifugal juicers. By picking one of these options, you can be confident you will have a beginner friendly juicer perfect for your needs.

Best Beginner Centrifugal Juicer

Mueller Austria Centrifugal Juicer

This juicer from Mueller is a very beginner friendly pick. There are two speed options, an 1,100 watt motor, and BPA free plastics, making this is a very versatile centrifugal juicer. With easy clean features and a 3 inch feeding chute, this juicer will also be easy to clean and minimal food prep will be needed.

Best Beginner Masticating Juicer

Aicok Slow Masticating Juicer

This slow masticating juicer from Aicok is a great choice for beginners. It is extremely easy to put together and use, making it great for new juicers. All plastics use are BPA free and the parts are dishwasher safe, so it’s super easy to clean. If you want to learn more about this juicer then, read our full review here!

Wrapping Up

Even though it may seem a bit overwhelming at first, the world of juicers is simpler than it seems. By doing a bit of research and thinking about what it is you want out of your juicer, you can find the perfect juicer for you. Centrifugal juicers and masticating juicers are great in their own ways, but it’s up to you to decide which one better suits your needs. We hope this shed some light on the differences between the two to help you pick the best juicer for you!

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Matt
Matt