Let’s talk about blenders, shall we? Blenders have come a long way – you can practically send yourself to the moon with a Vitamix these days. But it’s not just the new ones I love. My mother in law had this incredible, old Oster with approximately three buttons, and I swear it produced the smoothest concoctions ever.
I’m not here to tell you what blender to use, I’m just here to say that I think they’re under-utilized. There are tons of recipes to use with a blender! I like a blended smoothie or juice just fine, but when I started to realize the array of soups, sauces and dips I could make in a blender, it was game on.
Not Just For Smoothies
Anything that’s made with primarily one tool makes my heart sing. Less to clean is always a win, and it’s hard to argue that hand mixing or other options get food as smooth as a blender can. Here is what I use my blender for aside from the occasional smoothie.
- Blender soups rock my world. They have a smoothness that makes it feel like the soup is loaded with cream, even if it’s not. Also, a lot of modern blender versions have a soup function so they not only combine the ingredients but actually heat it up in the process. Pour from the blender directly into the bowl and eat…dreamy. Here are a few of my favorite squash varieties that can be made almost entirely in the blender.
- This Thai Peanut Butter Butternut Squash soup from Alexa Peduzzi with Fooduzzi has just the right amount of heat. And to make it even more simple, I use frozen chopped butternut squash if I don’t feel like fighting with cutting one up. So easy, so delicious.
- I also love this Curried Kabocha Squash soup from Steph Gaudreau – I use butternut or other types if I can’t find kabocha when I’m making it. The only thing other than a blender that you need is an oven to roast the squash.
- We also used a blender to finish off the Pumpkin Soup we created after our garden went bananas earlier this fall. Nothing says fall like pumpkin everything.
- A dip run through a blender is also completely my jam. These two blender recipes for dips are always a hit at my house:
- I find that a lot of baked goods that include zucchini recommend creating your batter in the blender. This seemed so weird to me at first, but I realized it creates a smoothness that I could never achieve if I just mixed. I can’t even get the lumps out of pancake batter.
Try It Yourself!
Here’s one of my all-time favorite dips to blend up. It’s a cold artichoke dip, and back in the day (2019) it was a hit at parties. I perhaps go a bit overboard on the garlic, so it may not be quite the hit at the after parties, but it’s worth it. Every time I make this someone questions how it’s dairy free. I swear, the blender makes it so creamy! I adapted this from a recipe I saw once on Instagram by Michelle Smith with The Whole Smiths.
Artichoke Blender Dip
- 1 can artichoke hearts or quarters, packed in water , drained
- 2 cloves garlic
- ¼ c. fresh parsley
- ¼ c. red onion, chopped
- ¼ – ½ c. olive oil (start with ¼ cup and up the amount if you want more)
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp onion powder
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- ¼ tsp red pepper flakes (these are key! A great little kick)
- Juice from 1 lemon
- Throw everything above into your blender and mix!
- It’s great with just a mild blend, leaving it chunky or blend until really smooth
What other things do you use your blender for? Do you have any blender recipes? Let me know in the comments.