A countertop blender is one of the most versatile appliances in your kitchen. You can make anything from smoothies and protein drinks to hummus, soups, and even nut milks. Blenders allow you to experiment with new techniques and make recipes all your own. To get the most out of your blender, like these available from KitchenAid brand, proper setup and care are key. Use the following guide to learn how to use a blender for a range of creations.


Operating your countertop blender is easy. Follow along with this step-by-step guide to learn how to use a blender.

1. Set Up Your Blender

Set your blender on a cool, flat surface. Plug it in.

Woman preparing a fruit smoothie with a KitchenAid® blender Woman preparing a fruit smoothie with a KitchenAid® blender

2. Add Your Ingredients

Fill the jar with your ingredients in this order: liquids, softer ingredients or powder, hard or frozen ingredients. Top it off with ice, if using it to make frozen drinks.

3. Secure the Lid Tightly

Place the lid securely onto the jar to prevent any spillage when you start the blender.

4. Start the Blender

Press or switch on the power/start button and then select the appropriate blender speed setting or preset recipe program. Depending on your model, you may also have a stop button or you may simply need to select your speed to start.

KitchenAid® blender with berry smoothie KitchenAid® blender with berry smoothie

5. Serve & Enjoy

Once your desired consistency is reached, pour the contents into the container of your choice—and enjoy!

6. Clean Your Blender

For easier cleanup, immediately wash your blender jar with warm, soapy water. You can even add a couple drops of dishwashing liquid to the bottom, fill ¾ full with warm water, run the blender, then rinse. Wipe down the base with a damp sponge or towel. Dry completely before storing.

KitchenAid® blender in matte black with tomato sauce in the jar KitchenAid® blender in matte black with tomato sauce in the jar


1. Smoothies

For a great smoothie, mix 1 cup of your liquid base with about ½ cup each of small pieces of fruit, greens and veggies of your choice. Then add any boosters, nut butters or yogurt, before blending until fully liquified.

An array of milkshakes An array of milkshakes

2. Milkshakes

You can make a milkshake in a blender by combining 2-3 ounces of milk to the bottom of your blender, followed by any solid add-ins such as candied chocolate pieces or chopped cheesecake. Add three scoops of your favorite ice cream and blend on high until smooth. You can also try making homemade whipped cream in a blender as a delicious topping. Similar to milkshakes, you can also create delicious protein shakes using your blender.

3. Ice Cream

Make ice cream in a blender by first blending your liquid base like heavy whipping cream with sweeteners and cocoa (if using) on high until creamy. Place in a freezer-safe container and cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 4-6 hours. Mix in any toppings and freeze for another 1-2 hours. 

Overhead view of glasses filled with juice Overhead view of glasses filled with juice

4. Fresh Juices

To make juice in a blender, first add your chopped fruits and vegetables to the blender jar along with your liquid base and blend until smooth. Run the mixture through a cheesecloth or nut milk bag into a container to remove the pulp, then enjoy your delicious green juice or other fresh fruit drink. A similar method can be used to make agua fresca drinks like horchata.

Fresh salsa with chips Fresh salsa with chips

5. Smooth Salsa

Assemble all the ingredients you need to make your favorite salsa, like tomatoes, onions, cilantro, lime juice, garlic, salt and pepper. Quarter or halve ingredients, then add them to the jar of a conventional blender and blend until smooth. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips. Also try our recipe for Fresh Tomatillo Salsa, which can be made in your KitchenAid® food processor or blender. You can also explore a range of sauces to make in your blender to amplify your recipes.

6. Hummus

You can make Classic Hummus by adding chickpeas, tahini, garlic, water and lemon juice into your blender and blending on low before gradually increasing to medium speed. Blend until texture is very smooth, adding water as needed to achieve the desired consistency. Looking for a change to your hummus flavors? Try Avocado Hummus or Edamame Hummus. Just add the ingredients to your blender and blend until smooth.

7. “Grind” or “Grate” Hard Cheeses

Cut hard cheese into chunks and place the blender on high until desired size is reached. Use the pulse setting at first, then move to high speed, if needed.

8. Bread Crumbs

If you have bread around the house that has gone stale or some that you’ve purposefully dried out, slice it into chunks. Put the dried bread along with your favorite spices and herbs in the blender jar and pulse until you reach your desired consistency. Make bread crumbs to top creamy crab cakes and more.

KitchenAid® blender with a personal jar filled with berry mixture KitchenAid® blender with a personal jar filled with berry mixture

9. Baby Food

Cook hard ingredients like carrots or butternut squash, then quarter or halve items before placing in the blender jar. A little liquid like broth or juice helps get the right consistency. Puree on high until smooth. The new Small Batch Jar expansion pack for KitchenAid® K150 and K400 blenders is perfect for making just a few servings of homemade baby food. A sealed lid lets you store any leftovers or prepare batches in advance to keep them fresh for meal times. This works great for bread crumbs, sauces, and other toppings as well.

10. Soup

Craving some homemade soup? Your blender can help with that, too. Try this recipe for Creamy Roasted Vegetable Soup. Roast veggies to golden perfections, then add them along with liquid ingredients to your blender for a healthy and hearty pureed soup. If you have a KitchenAid® Pro Line® Series blender with a thermal control jar, your blender can not only puree or blend your soup, it can also heat and keep your soup warm—all in the same appliance for added convenience.


Knowing how to use a blender properly is important to get the best results, experiment confidently, and operate safely.

  • Fill the blender jar up to but not past the max fill indicator line to account for movement and air while blending. Do not overload your blender.

  • Do not pour boiling liquid into your blender. Let soups and sauces cool slightly before blending in a countertop blender.

  • Use the feeder cap on the top of the blender’s lid to add ingredients while you blend. This technique is perfect for emulsifying sauces, mayonnaise and salad dressings.

  • Wash your blender’s jar immediately after using to avoid food drying on the blades and walls, making it harder to remove.

  • Never reach inside the blender while it is operating. To push ingredients toward the blades or scrape the sides, use the tamper that comes with several KitchenAid® models such as the K400 Variable Speed and High Performance blenders. You can also purchase a standard tamper or a flex-edge tamper separately.

  • Always start blending on low speed and move gradually higher. The KitchenAid® K150, K400 and higher-powered blender models are designed with the Soft Start® Feature which automatically starts from a slower speed to pull food into the blade, then quickly increases to the selected speed setting. This feature ensures even blending while reducing splatter for less mess.

Get answers to the most common blender questions below.

Do you need to add water to a blender?

While it doesn't necessarily have to be water, your blender's blades will have an easier time breaking down harder ingredients with some kind of liquid base.

Can a blender blend frozen fruit?

While you can place frozen fruit in the blender, it's best to use one that has a powerful motor in order to break down the fruit more thoroughly. You'll also want to use enough liquid to help aid the breakdown process, and if possible, make sure your frozen fruit is slightly thawed for better results.   

For powerful blending, KitchenAid brand offers High Performance Series Blenders that help you quickly achieve your ideal texture with stainless steel blades and nine variable speeds.

How long can you leave a blender on?

To prevent overheating, it's best to use your blender at intervals of 30 seconds until ingredients are fully blended. It’s best not to leave the blender on for longer than 3 minutes. 

Preset recipe programs, like the Soup setting on select KitchenAid® blenders, are designed to run at the optimal time for your recipe type. You can allow the preset program to run its full length.

What can you not do with a blender?

Ensure you have a blender for years to come by avoiding blending boiling hot liquids, hard non-food items such as wood, metal and plastic, or anything that falls outside the blender’s intended usage.

KitchenAid® blender with a berry smoothie KitchenAid® blender with a berry smoothie


With so many ways to use a blender, and so many types of blenders, the possibilities seem endless. With a KitchenAid® blender, you can utilize pre-programmed settings to make icy mocktail drinks, fresh juicessalad dressings, frozen margaritas, frappes, smoothies and even soups. The variable speeds and precision controls will also break down all your ingredients and blend them to your ideal texture for recipes like protein waffles, whipped cream and more.


Explore KitchenAid® blenders in a variety of colors, including white, blue, black and red blenders.

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