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Best Citrus Juicer Buying Guide
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Now that you've seen our picks of the top 5 citrus juicers on the market, our buying guide will teach you what to consider when choosing the best orange juicer that's right for you.
A common question for those unfamiliar with citrus juicers is why you should buy a different juicer than the ones commonly used for other fruits. The reason is that most orange juice juicers require a lot of prep work for the citrus, including peeling off the thick waxy peel and removing the pit or most of the seeds. This is a big problem for citrus, as it can make preparing juices like oranges a daunting task.
Additionally, the best citrus juicer offers the option to adjust the amount of pulp that goes into the juice and are generally easier to clean than juicers, especially if the juicer is clogged with pulp.
Citrus juicers usually just cut the fruit being juiced in half and press it on the juicer. Juicers usually press the fruit against the center reamer, which turns automatically, or you can rotate the fruit against the center reamer and direct the juice through the spout into your cup or pitcher. Some best juicers have handles that allow you to apply pressure, while others automatically hold the fruit, and some still feature an auger. While not all citrus juicers treat the pulp equally, most will keep the pulp from getting into hard-to-clean spots, and some will blend the pulp more or less with the juice depending on your preference.
There are three main types of citrus juicers: squeezers, manual juicers, and electric juicers. A juicer extracts juice by placing the fruit between two plates, then squeezes the connected levers together to squeeze the juice out. Manual juicers are set up a little differently - place the fruit on a ridged reamer, and spin the juicer against the reamer to squeeze the juice out. Electric juicers use the same design, but make the juicing process more automated by letting the reamer turn automatically while you hold the fruit in place. The best option for an electric orange juicer is a centrifugal juicer.
For both manual and electric juicers, look for those that have a lever handle on the top press, as this makes it easy to control the pressure applied to the fruit for continuous juicing.
Pulp conditioning is an advanced feature of the best citrus juicer that allows you to set how much pulp is allowed into the juice or filtered out. This is especially important if you prefer no-pulp or low-pulp juices, as many juicers without pulp supervision leave your juices full of pulp.
A common problem with using a citrus juicer is how messy the process can be. After all, no one wants to splatter the kitchen with sticky citrus juice. The best juicers will have reamers specially designed to reduce the possibility of splashing, such as a splash guard around the reamer or a plastic cover to prevent any splashing of the fruit inside the best orange juicer. Also, many citrus juicer machines have a drip-stop spout to prevent slow leaks that would otherwise leave a puddle of sticky juice on your counter. Also, consider whether you have to manually save the fruit during the juicing process, or if the juicer has a built-in lever that keeps your hands off the fruit and away from the trickiest part of the process.
Some electric juicers can spin not only in one direction, but also in both directions. This counter-rotating operation extracts the last drop of juice and pulp from citrus fruits more efficiently than other juicers. Many electric juicers automatically reverse, while some juicers let you choose when to activate the reverse function.
Ease of cleaning is very important when it comes to orange juice makers. After all, if your juicer is difficult to clean, you'll hesitate before using it. With few internal parts and a well-designed waste pulp storage area, the best orange juicer is the easiest to clean. A particularly important category here is dishwasher safety, because if you can simply put the juicer in the dishwasher after you're done using it, then cleanup is a breeze. The number of different parts your juicer breaks down into is also important, as you'll need to take it apart and reassemble it after each use for a thorough cleaning.
Of course, you need to consider your budget when considering the best citrus juicer for the money that is right for your kitchen. Manual juicers and juicers are usually the cheapest, although their prices can vary widely. Electric juicers vary widely in price, depending on the amount of marketing and consumer research involved in the product design, as well as accessories, and the addition of features like drip-stop nozzles and reverse rotation. Many juicers, but not all, come with a one-year limited warranty — and while that might not seem like a long time, it can give you some peace of mind as you get used to your new juicer.
One of the most important considerations for a top-rated citrus juicer is what material it is made of. Since you will be drinking or eating the juice coming out of the juicer, the best juicer must be made of food-grade plastic or stainless steel, and no plastic parts contain toxic BPA. Stainless steel is more durable than plastic in the long run, especially if you plan to use your juicer a lot. Also, consider choosing a juicer with dishwasher-safe plastic and stainless steel parts that make cleaning significantly faster and easier.
While most juicer buying options are a success or failure, small accessories like the included pitcher or a second juicing plastic lid can be a nice addition. These features allow you to start juicing sooner, and in the case of the second plastic cover, allow you to juice the juicer multiple times before fully cleaning out the juicer.
A citrus juicer is a great addition to the kitchen for quick, healthy juices from citrus fruits. You can rest easy knowing that fruit juices are free of preservatives and added sugars, and there is the possibility of trying new recipes that require fresh juice. However, using a juicer to break your rules is important because it makes things easier for you. This is a particular advantage that electric juicers can offer, because they make your juicer easier to use, so you're actually more likely to take advantage of it. Our reviews of the 5 best citrus juicers on the market today, along with our buying guide, provide all the information you need to find the right citrus juicer for you.