My Beloved Blender

When I think about the one item in my kitchen that gets the most use it would be my blender.  I have a small kitchen and storing several larger appliances would not work well in my space. Luckily, I have found a variety of ways to use my blender which has cut down on the number of kitchen tools in my cabinets.

You do not need to spend a lot of money on a blender to reap the benefits of owning one. If you care for your blender properly, it should last quite a while! My blender has survived several moves and nearly daily use over the past 5 years. For the longest time I avoided using my blender because I didn’t like the thought of having to clean it. Once I discovered that you could clean the container using the actual blender base, I was sold and now I use my blender on the regular!

Below are a few ways that I like to use the blender at my house. The opportunities are endless!

  1. Smoothies – My daughter LOVES smoothies. Smoothies are an easy way to incorporate a variety of fruits and vegetables. A few of our favorite smoothie recipes include Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie and the Berry and Greens Smoothie.
  2. Soups/purees– When my toddler was a baby, I used my blender to puree fruits and vegetables to make my own baby food. It was a cost-effective way to introduce her to new foods. I also like making soups in my blender like our Autumn Soup recipe and the Cheesy Broccoli Soup. To create a smoother consistency, simply place prepared soup in the blender for several seconds.
  3. Ice cream/popsicles– My daughter enjoys making Banana Ice Cream with me as a quick treat after dinner, or even sometimes for our breakfast! Popsicles are another easy snack or dessert. Find some great recipes here!
  4. Sauces/dips– I love how easy it is to make sauces and dips with my blender in seconds. Hummus, spinach dip and pesto are some of our family’s favorites.
  5. Batters– Another way that I use my blender is to create smooth batters for pancakes, waffles, and muffins.

*Helpful tip: An easy way to clean your blender after each use is to fill the container halfway with lukewarm water and add a few drops of dish soap. Place the container, with the lid securely on, back onto the blender base and gradually increase the speed on your blender for roughly 30 seconds. Once the soapy water has coated the inside of the container, I simply rinse and let air dry. Anything that I can clean quickly is a plus in my kitchen!

Cheers to trying a new recipe with your blender!

Katy Moscoso

Katy Moscoso is a Program Specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. As a new mom she is always on the lookout for easy, healthy recipes to prepare for her family.

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Kitchen gifts that will help save money

I am not much for lining my countertops with one-use gadgets such as bun warmers, ice cream cone makers, rotisseries, hot dog cookers, rice cookers, single serving coffee makers, etc. But, I do think that some small appliances can help make cooking at home faster, easier, or cheaper. Here are a few ideas for your gift list:

  • Slow cookers allow you to cook soups, stews, and broth without having to watch them all day. They are great for cooking less tender, less expensive cuts of meat and don’t take much energy to run.
  • Blenders are great for making smoothies out of fruit that is a little extra ripe. You can also use a blender to grate hard cheese, make bread crumbs, or make baby food.
  • Sets of food containers are helpful for storing family or individual servings when you make big batches of soup, chili, etc. If you have someone who eats alone or has difficulty cooking, buying food containers and filling them with meals is a great idea.

-pointers from Peggy

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