At last, the day has come—you’re thinking about buying a juicer. When you first heard your cool, fit friends sing the praises of their daily kale-and-beetroot cold press habit, you probably scoffed at the idea of spending hundreds of your hard-earned dollars on a complicated device that does precisely one thing, juices your vegetables and citrus fruit.
But somewhere along the way, the idea of investing in a juicer (or one our best blenders) started to become less preposterous—maybe because your doctor told you that you need to get more vitamins and minerals in your diet, or because you realized that an at-home juicer costs the same as about a month of buying those pre-made juices from the trendy shop around the corner. Or, maybe you really love the fresh cold orange juice you get at brunch.
To help you complete your journey from juice skeptic to savant, we tested 10 of the best different types of juicers on their abilities and broke down everything you need to know when shopping for one, including the big difference between masticating and centrifugal models. (In short, the first slowly crushes produce down to release juice, and the second quickly shreds it with spinning blades.)
Our favorite juicer, the Omega J8006HDS Nutrition Center Juicer(available at Walmart for $312.99), consistently impressed us with high juice yield across multiple produce types without sacrificing build quality or price. While the Omega will give you the most juice for the price, shoppers interested in a fast, easy-to-use centrifugal model should consider the Breville 800JEXL Juice Fountain Elite.
Juice yield was our number one priority while testing these products, but we also considered their accessories, price, build quality, speed, noise level, how well they extract juice, and how easy they were to clean. After two weeks of juicing kale, spinach, citrus fruits, grapefruit, beets and more with all the contenders on fast and slow speed, we knew exactly which juicers on the market deserved our badge.
The Omega J8006 won our first juicer round-up in 2017, and its most recent model, the J8006HDS, is here to claim the crown once more. Slow, steady, and built to last, this horizontal auger masticating juicer produced consistently high juice yield with little effort on my part, and the resulting juice was always crisp and refreshingly low on pulp and foam. It’s both the best masticating model we tested, and our favorite high speed juicer overall.
This Omega is heavy, but for good reason—its base prevents it from tipping over when you press the plunger down hard, and its auger is hefty and powerful enough to push through almost any obstacle. Although juicers are a notorious pain to keep clean, the Omega’s parts that need to be changed and removed for cleaning are lightweight, well-designed, and simple enough to re-assemble without causing a headache. It can also be stored more easily than honking, vertical centrifugal models.
The J8006HDS isn’t perfect, however. It has one of the smallest feed tubes—where you insert the produce to be juiced—so you’ll have to cut large fruit down to size. The central unit that houses the auger inevitably traps pulp that goes un-juiced, too. "Slow" masticating juicers like this one specialize in leafy greens, but they aren't wise choices if you want to juice soft fruits exclusively—centrifugal models are perfectly adequate for that.
When I worked in a juice bar, we used an earlier model of this Omega exclusively for wheatgrass, and although the yield was great (and the slow masticating process supposedly preserved more vitamins and minerals than spinning blades would), I distinctly remember having to regularly stop and disassemble the juicer due to pulp getting stuck. Odds are you won’t run into the same problem unless you’re running a high-volume juice shop out of your kitchen, but it’s worth noting.
Ultimately, if you want high-quality juice that will waste the least amount of produce, we recommend the Omega Nutrition Center. The price tag isn’t something to laugh at, but you won’t find a comparable juicer at a better price.
Hi, I’m Cassidy, Reviewed’s kitchen editor and former star employee of the first organic juice bar and cafe in my hometown. Well, “star” is probably a stretch—but I did work summers from ages 17 to 19 at this shop around the corner from my house, where I used both household centrifugal juicers and industry-level cold press machines (aka masticating juicers) to serve up fresh juice to customers. When I wasn’t carefully crafting the store playlist or sneaking free baked goods from the counter, I was actually learning quite a lot about juicing (and making smoothie bowls).
Some of what I learned I now know to be false, or at least unconfirmed by the scientific community. For example, the cafe operated on the belief that cold press juicers preserve more nutrients in produce than centrifugal ones can, which isn’t entirely true. I also sold a ton of “juice cleanses”—bottles upon bottles of cold-pressed juice designed to be consumed in place of food for up to two weeks—that I now know are a dangerous, largely unnecessary form of crash dieting. I’ll go into more detail later about the science behind these claims, but for now it’s worth noting that juicing should be incorporated into a well-balanced diet, not used as your sole method of getting nutrients for any period of time.
Despite operating on some pseudoscience, this juice bar did serve good food and good juice, thanks to our local produce suppliers and great equipment. I learned how to assemble, disassemble, wash, and reassemble juicers as quickly as possible, how to deal with wheatgrass jams in the Omega horizontal juicer (an older model of our winner), and how to get out every type of juice stain under the sun (I spilled a pitcher of beet juice on myself my first day, Carrie-style).
When approaching this round-up, I tried to bring these lessons to testing and not repeat previous mistakes, while also letting the data speak for itself and challenge my assumptions. While the numbers often lined up with my preconceptions, sometimes they surprised me! Erin Fife tested and wrote for our original round-up in 2017, and while some of her language and research is used throughout this piece, the current ranking is based entirely on new testing conducted in 2019.
Juicing is sweet, but serious business, so I spent over 40 hours running these products through a battery of tests to determine which is worthy of your kitchen. Five tests, to be precise—juicing spinach, carrots, grapefruit, and a kale and apple combo before going through a subjective analysis of things like design, build quality, and accessories. For every type of produce, I would weigh the whole ingredients, run them through the juicer, and then weigh both the resulting pulp and resulting juice. Our senior scientist, Julia, then took the numbers and did an analysis of the juicer’s efficiency and total output.
Once we narrowed it down to the top three juicers, I ran the last contenders through a sixth bonus round—making a challenging juice cocktail of dense root vegetables (carrots, beet and ginger) along with some apples for sweetness.
Juice yield was our number one priority while testing these products, but we also took into account their accessories, price, build quality, speed, noise level, and how easy they were to clean. On the whole, masticating juicers all rank higher than centrifugal juicers, because their juice output is greater.
Which Kind of Juicer: Masticating or Centrifugal?
If you’re new to juicing, you’re probably confused about the key terms I keep using to describe these juicers—masticating and centrifugal. Each method has its advantages and disadvantages, but ultimately, we recommend masticating models for most people. Let me explain why.
Masticating juicers, also known as cold or slow juicers, use an auger that twists to slowly squeeze all the juice out of produce without the use of blades. Hence, the juicer “masticates” your fruits and vegetables, not unlike your own teeth would. They can can situated either horizontally or vertically—our top pick is a horizontal model, but we also like the vertical model from Hurom. They’re called “slow” juicers because, you guessed it, they take a while to work compared to centrifugal juicers, usually requiring more work on the user’s part to chop the produce into smaller parts and feed them through a narrow chute.
They’re also called “cold” because the lack of friction and fast-spinning blades prevent the juice from heating up, which many believe is beneficial in preserving a juice’s key nutrients. This claim doesn’t have enough support from the scientific community to be certain, but many juice bars (like my former employer) still operate on this assumption. Cold-pressed juicers are another form of masticating juicers, which take the next step of squeezing all the juice out of the produce’s pulp through a fine mesh bag. This is a method that helps preserve the shelf life of juice and is typically reserved for commercial use—at-home cold-pressed machines exist, but they’re expensive, messy, and altogether unnecessary next to regular masticating juicers.
Nutrient claims aside, masticating juicers are almost always better than their counterparts at squeezing the most juice possible out of produce, especially greens. They’re also much quieter, smaller, extract juice better, and typically easier to clean and store. Unfortunately, they do require some patience and practice to use, but we think the yield is worth the wait. Most units will come with a cleaning brush to make cleaning the small parts easier.
Centrifugal juicers are bigger, louder, and simpler, with fast-spinning blades that grind up and separate produce into either juice or pulp, like a centrifuge. These are probably the juicers you’re used to seeing.
These juicers excel at making orange juice and processing other citrus fruits, but struggle with finer produce like spinach and other greens, which often spin right past the blades. The blades also create a lot of foam and contribute to lower juice yield. At my juice bar, we used centrifugal juicers to make most mixed juices up front fresh for customers, while masticating juicers were reserved for making cold-pressed bottles and shots of wheatgrass and ginger. Foam was everyone’s number one complaint.
If you don’t plan on making much green juice or don’t have the time to spare for a masticating juicer, a centrifugal juicer can be a good option. They’re bulky and loud, but they can process a ton of fruit much faster and easier than slow juicers can.
Do Juicers Make You Healthier?
Many juicer companies, along with the shops that sell cold-pressed bottles, make big health claims about their products. They’ll help you lose weight! They’ll remove toxins from your body! They’ll increase your nutrient absorption! Although many of these claims are appealing, any savvy shopper should understand that they are largely unsubstantiated, and that a juicer is another regular kitchen tool, no miracle health product.
While juice is full of vitamins and minerals, it’s essentially liquid sugar that lacks the fiber and other macronutrients that keep you full and your body running. So while you might lose weight quickly if you decide to go on a juice cleanse for any period of time, your body will be in desperate need of actual nutrition, and you’ll likely feel fatigued and damage your metabolism in the long run, gaining the weight right back when you return to solid food. For these reasons, juicing should only be used in conjunction with other methods of getting calories and nutrients, not as a replacement for them.
Other Juicers We Tested
If you’re put off by the word “slow” and want a sleek, speedy juicer that will suit the whole family, the Breville 800JEXL Juice Fountain Elite is your best bet. It’s the most expensive of the Breville models we tested, but for good reason—its stainless steel interior construction means no stained or cracked plastic to deal with, and it yielded the most juice of any centrifugal model for almost every type of produce in our tests.
Wet and juicy fruit like grapefruit and apple were no match for the Juice Fountain Elite, which spit out fresh, flavorful, pulp-free juice every time. Its large feed tube also reduced prep time for these kinds of produce. Greens provided a bigger challenge, as they do for all centrifugal models, and many leaves flew through the juicer untouched. If you’re trying to make wheatgrass shots or get your daily green juice, you’d be better off with the Omega or another masticating model. Across the board, centrifugal juicers like the Breville also produce a lot of foam.
This Breville is big and loud, but because of its size, speed, and proficiency with orange juice, it’s the ideal juicer for families who have a lot of bellies to fill or who love to entertain, from Sunday brunch to cocktail parties. Just make sure you have the counter space or cabinet space to store it and patience to clean it when you’re done.
The Hurom H-AA is a gorgeous vertical masticating juicer that comes in a range of on-trend colors (hello, rose gold) and assembles into a fairly compact unit. Throughout testing, it demonstrated its range as one of the top performers for both grapefruit and spinach. Unfortunately, it had a much tougher time with carrots and the bonus root vegetable juice, yielding less juice and more pulp than the competitors.
The design of this Hurom is similar to the vertical Omega we tested, but less user-friendly. The pulp chute has a complicated open/closed/half-open switch that opens the rear plug, and I often forgot to reset it to closed when I started juicing again. This switch also traps a lot of pulp that’s difficult to get out when cleaning.
The Hurom H-AA has a number of strange features and accessories we didn’t test but are worth knowing about, including an ice cream maker and tofu press. The juicer’s muddled manual doesn’t clarify much. Ultimately, this is a beautiful, fidgety device that comes at a premium price and will take some getting used to.
Considering its low price, this triangular and wildly affordable horizontal masticating juicer from Aobosi surprised us with generally high juice yield. It produced some of the most spinach juice and kale-and-apple juice of all the models, and didn’t tend to trap pulp around the auger like most other horizontal juicers. The pulp that did come out was often rather wet, however, indicating another kind of inefficiency.
The main reason the Aobosi doesn’t rank higher is its low build quality. Throughout testing, the lightweight juicer wobbled and almost fell over multiple times when I had to press down hard with the plunger. This required me to use my other hand to stabilize the base. Compared to the heavy Omega Nutrition Center, the Aobosi felt like a child’s toy, and as a result I’m skeptical of its longevity.
If you’re desperate for a masticating juicer but can’t shell out for other models, the Aobosi might be a good intro unit. Don’t expect it to last you a lifetime, though.
Like the Hurom H-AA, the Omega VSJ843Q is a vertical masticating juicer with a compact design and similar components. While it slightly beat out our top pick on grapefruit and kale juice yield, it doesn’t seem to be built as well, and it’s harder to disassemble and clean.
With this and all vertical auger juicers, be aware that pulp often gets stuck between the auger and the juice screen that filters pulp out of your juice. So when you remove the auger you'll inevitably end up with pulp all over your hands. Or countertop. Or both. A sink garbage disposal unit can be very handy when working with a masticating juicer, but centrifugal juicers do a much better job keeping the pulp primarily the pulp container.
Overall, this Omega worked just fine, but we wouldn’t recommend it over other products unless it was being sold at a significant discount.
The Tribest Slowstar, another vertical masticating juicer, yielded some of the most juice for carrots and grapefruit and altogether impressed us with its output. This updated model also comes with a mincer attachment we have not tested, but could be useful for people searching for a multipurpose tool.
Unfortunately, the Slowstar has a number of design issues that keep us from ranking it higher. The pulp chute is narrower than most, which made cleaning the pulp out of the chute more of a chore. The unit is fidgety to reassemble, and the plastic chute topper, designed to catch loose produce, was too small to hold greens as I added them to the chute, resulting in the greens spilling onto the table and floor. It’s a fine juicer, but the fit and finish just isn’t there.
We were fascinated when we first heard about the H-AI Slow Juicer, a vertical masticating juicer from Hurom. Why? Because it’s “self-feeding,” meaning you don’t have to stand over the juicer and press your produce down to get it going. Just load up the top bin with cut fruit and veggies, turn the thing on, and expect juice in no time.
Well, that was the idea, anyway. In practice, the self-feeding element is finicky, prone to sticking, and doesn’t actually save you much time—because the chute is so narrow, you have to pre-chop veggies even smaller than usual before loading them into the feeder. The self-feeding element is also useless for “weightless” greens like spinach. If you’re mixing up multiple types of produce into one juice, you’d be better off using the juicer's manual setting.
Overall, juice output wasn’t as good with this Hurom as it was with the H-AA, the regular vertical masticating juicer that we much prefer. The H-AI is as sleek and pretty as other Hurom products, but its weird self-feeding feature really isn’t worth the extra money.
The term “compact” is relative, and while the Juice Fountain Compact is smaller than Breville’s Juice Fountain Plus and Juice Fountain Elite, it’s by no means a small juicer. Unlike other centrifugal models that come with separate pulp containers, this juicer collects pulp around the exterior edge of the strainer basket. While this decreases the overall footprint of the juicer, in order to empty its pulp container, you have to take the whole thing apart. I found that residual juice tends to drip out of that container on the way to the trash can.
While this Breville produced middling results for most tests, it yielded the very least amount of juice for both grapefruit and kale and apple, making a poor option for most casual juice drinkers. It’s pretty and seems built to last, but that’s about its only advantages.
One step above the Compact and one step below the Elite is the Breville Juice Fountain Plus, a functional but unremarkable centrifugal juicer. It’s the same size and shape as the Elite, but its plastic construction makes it less durable and more prone to staining. As a result, it’s also not as pretty as either the Compact or the Elite.
This juicer struggled with spinach but performed fairly well when juicing carrots and grapefruit. The large feed tube can fit a whole grapefruit, and the juice container—where your fresh juice comes out—fits snugly up under the spout so there aren’t any spills. However, it’s too bulky and expensive to really recommend.
The Cuisinart CJE-1000 has a nice aesthetic, it’s easy to put together, and requires very little prep thanks to the 3-inch feed chute. This centrifugal juicer hung with the middle of the pack for most of our testing, producing a decent amount of carrot and grapefruit juice, but fell flat on design.
The top of the juicer is connected with a hinge on the back. You can remove the entire thing to clean it, but you’ll have to tilt the top way back before it pops out of the hinge. There’s never any reason to open the top partially, without removing it completely for cleaning, so the hinge itself is rather pointless.
The Cuisinart also has a nozzle that’s meant to control the flow of juice from the juicer to the juice container, but we were unable to fully close the nozzle (the most important part). In addition, when we turned the Cuisinart to the highest setting, the whole machine slid on the countertop as the motor spun up, kicking the juice container away from the machine.
Between its poor design and inability to fully juice greens, we can’t recommend this model.
Cassidy covers all things cooking as the kitchen editor or Reviewed. An experimental home chef with a healthy distrust of recipes, Cassidy lives by the "Ratatouille" philosophy that, with a few techniques and key tools, anyone can cook. Since joining Reviewed in mid-2018, she's produced in-depth reviews and guides on everything from meal kits to stand mixers and the right way to cook an egg.
We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.