If you like to make frozen drinks and slushies on a hot day, you'll want a blender that can crush ice. However, not all models can blend ice cubes, as ice can sometimes get stuck on the blades, preventing the cubes from breaking down. For a pleasant and tasty drink, most users want a consistent, snow-like blend without any uneven chunks or clumps left behind in the mix.
We've tested over 85 blenders, and below are our recommendations for the best blenders for ice crushing you can buy. See our picks for the best blenders for frozen drinks, the best blenders, the best Ninja blenders, and the best blenders for smoothies.
The Vitamix 7500 is the best blender for ice crushing we've tested. Although plenty of blenders can get the job done and cost less, if you want something heavy-duty with a fantastic overall performance, it's worth considering this high-end blender. It's extremely well-built and comes with a seven-year U.S. warranty (depending on where you buy it) which is important if you use your blender daily for crushing ice and other hard ingredients, like frozen fruits. It comes with a 64-ounce jar and has a simple control scheme, with a speed dial and a switch for pulse mode that you can use for ice crushing.
It's part of Vitamix's 'Legacy' product line, and like other 'Legacy' models, no part of the blender is dishwasher-safe. It also doesn't have blending programs, so you need to stop the machine manually. If you want a blender that can crush ice automatically and stop when it's done, you might prefer the Vitamix Propel 750. It's more expensive but has a 'Frozen Drinks' mode that crushes ice with just one push of a button. However, the 7500 stands out from other Vitamix models because it has durable metal siding around the motor base instead of plastic.
If you're not prepared to spend that much but still want a versatile blender, you might prefer the Ninja Foodi Cold & Hot Blender. It doesn't feel as well-made as the Vitamix 7500 and comes with a much shorter warranty, but it's very sturdy and easily makes snow-like crushed ice ideal for frozen drinks like blended cocktails or slushies. Unlike some of the cheaper options here, it can produce a silky-smooth blend with fibrous ingredients, so if your recipe has pineapple or blueberries, it won't have unprocessed bits left over.
Like the top pick, it can hot blend and heat ingredients, which you might care about if you plan to use your blender for a bit of everything. It offers many automatic blending programs for different recipes, which is nice if you often have your hands full in the kitchen since the machine will automatically stop when finished. That said, its design has a few downsides. Instead of heating ingredients with friction from the blades like the Vitamix, it has a heating element built into the jar, which means you can't put it in your dishwasher or immerse it in water in the sink. You might find that annoying, especially if you plan to mainly use the blender for crushed ice. However, it has a self-clean program that does a good job of cleaning the jar, especially if you're only blending ice and liquid.
The best mid-range blender for crushing ice we've tested is the Ninja Professional Plus Blender with Auto-iQ. If you're planning to mainly use your blender for ice crushing and don't care as much about versatility, you can spend a lot less. This model comes with a large-capacity 72-ounce pitcher, which you can use to make a batch of snow-like crushed ice in about 30 seconds, similar to the previous picks. It's not as well-built as the KitchenAid K400, and the motor base and gears are made of plastic, but it still feels very sturdy. The lid for the pitcher has a pouring spout, which helps you serve drinks without spilling, but it's not a two-part lid, so you can't pour in more ingredients while the machine is running.
However, it doesn't perform as well as the KitchenAid or Vitamix 7500 for purposes besides crushing ice. In particular, it struggles to make a smooth blend with fibrous fruits and vegetables, so smoothies and frozen drinks can have a grainy texture, depending on your recipe. Unlike the Ninja Foodi Cold & Hot Blender, its main blade assembly is a column of very sharp blades, and since it's so easy to cut yourself, it's harder to clean by hand. On the plus side, the jar and lid are dishwasher-safe.
If you don't plan to use your blender for much besides ice-crushing, a straightforward, budget-friendly blender might be just what you need. This blender is just as good for crushing ice as our previous pick but comes with fewer features and a less sturdy build in exchange for a cheaper price tag. It doesn't have automatic blending programs but otherwise has a similar design, with a 72-ounce main pitcher and a lid with a pouring spout. It can make snow-like crushed ice in about 30 seconds using its manual 'Pulse' mode.
However, it's not ideal for processing fibrous ingredients, especially in large batches, so it's not well-suited for smoothies or frozen drinks with ingredients like leafy greens. You may not mind if you just want to crush ice for cocktails or make drinks like slushies and blended margaritas. Like the Ninja Professional Plus Βlender with Auto-iQ, its extra sharp blades can make it tricky to clean by hand, but it won't be hard to clean if you're working with liquid ingredients. The jar, lid, and blades are all dishwasher-safe as well.
You may not want a bulky full-size blender to make blended cocktails for only one or two people. The Ninja Foodi Power Nutri DUO is a personal blender that easily crushes small batches of ice. Its short, compact motor base also makes it easier to store out of the way in a cupboard when you're not using it. It comes with a pair of 24-ounce jars that you can use to make snow-like crushed ice. Unlike most of the blenders on this list, it also does a fantastic job of processing fibrous ingredients, so you can use it to make silky single-serve drinks with ingredients like kale. The jars each come with a resealable lid to bring your drink on the go.
It's very loud when running but has a few automatic blending programs, so you don't need to stand next to it the whole time. It's versatile for a personal blender, thanks to its 14-ounce 'Smoothie Βowl Maker' that works very well for thick mixtures like nut butter. It's well-built, like the Ninja Professional Βlender 1000, but doesn't feel as sturdy as the more expensive blenders on this list. Like most personal blenders, it can't hot blend and has only one speed setting, which limits its versatility. That said, it's easy to clean by hand, and all the jars, lids, and blade assemblies are dishwasher-safe.
May 11, 2023: Added the Vitamix Propel 750 as an alternate to the Vitamix 7500 and added the Vitamix A3500 to Notable Mentions.
Mar 17, 2023: Checked that the picks represent the best recommendations and that the products are in stock.
Jan 16, 2023: Added the KitchenAid K400 and the Ninja Mega Kitchen System BL770 to Notable Mentions.
Nov 17, 2022: Updated text to provide more information about the recommended products.
Sep 20, 2022: Reorganized picks due to Test Bench 1.0 updates. Added the Vitamix 7500, the Ninja Foodi Cold & Ηot Βlender, and the Ninja Professional Plus Βlender with Auto-iQ.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best blenders for crushing ice for most people in each price range. We factor in the price (a cheaper blender wins over a pricier one if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability (no blenders that are difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).
If you would like to choose for yourself, here is the list of all our reviews for blenders for ice-crushing. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no blender is perfect, most blenders are great enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not noticeable unless you look for them.