We aren’t much impressed with this blender’s quality, but overall, built materials are fine for a machine at this price and we really like the simplicity the iCucina provides. Nevertheless, the mid-range segment is a tough market to compete in, simply because there’s so many products to choose from, and therefore it’d be better if iCucina emphasized on eye-catching style. Some improvements on the blade assembly would help increase its appeal as well.
The overall design of the Hamilton Beach is simple, but the blending cup with a fixed blade assembly inside seems to be impractical if used as a to-go cup. The materials are only average, making the blender itself look fairly jerkwater and not catchy. This, however, is expected for the price.
Locking the cup with the blade attached in the motor base may be disruptive and requires a bit of practice. Otherwise, the iCucina doesn’t disappoint too much when it comes to ease of use. Cleaning it is also not much of an issue especially when the cups, lids, and blade assembly are all dishwasher-safe.
Despite its intuitive design, the Hamilton Beach is somewhat uncomfortable to use. The blending jar attaches securely to the main body, but the assembly process is a bit of a hassle. Not only that, but it’s also more of a pain to clean than other blenders since the blade assembly isn’t removable.
We were more than a little surprised at the results yielded by this iCucina since they didn’t come out as good as we expected. The 300-watt motor and fast spinning blades weren’t enough to help it overcome our challenges.
In the protein shake test, it was among the worst, leaving a mass of partially unblended food chunks. It also failed to power through whole ice cubes or create a smooth mixture of fibrous greens. And as weak as it was in processing frozen fruits, we assure this blender is only suited to blend softer ingredients.
We tested the Hamilton Beach against a range of culinary blenders, but this machine was surprisingly the only one that didn’t pass even a single test. With its weak motor and small blending blade, it failed to blend the foods completely, resulting in grainy, rough mixtures.
Pros & Cons
- It’s good for simple plant-based blends.
- Built quality is mediocre but fine for the price.
- Simple design allows for straightforward use, cleaning, and storage.
- It stands stably, rather than jumping around, while working.
- Inexpensive and easy to use with one-touch blending.
- Blending cup features measuring lines.
- Compact design makes it perfect for use in small spaces.
- It is adequate for light blending performance.
- The lack of versatility.
- Short power cord.
- The low-powered motor limits its capabilities.
- Poorly-built quality impairs the machine’s overall performance and durability.
- It works inconsistently
- The blades are too short, which affects the blending time and final results.
In the smoothie test, the Hamilton Beach had a longer blending time than average, taking twice as long as the others to produce a protein shake and still ending up with a slightly coarse texture. While the texture was deemed acceptable, the prolonged blending time could cause the motor to overheat, even tiring or numbing the user’s hand. The blender struggled with breaking down high-fiber food, resulting in a considerable amount of pulp and mediocre extraction.
In comparison, the iCucina blender performed slightly better than the Hamilton Beach in most tests and was able to grind frozen fruits pretty well, although it did compromise on time and texture. Still, we don’t consider it a suitable option for preparing a complex workout drink— something that involves raw nuts and dried fruits— or for incorporating fiber-rich ingredients into your diet.
Overall, if you have to choose between the Hamilton Beach and the iCucina, we’d recommend the latter.
Behind the Comparison
Tina Pham is a staff writer and reviewer, with five years of experience in the industry. As a passionate amateur home cook, she loves to discover practical cooking solutions, and has made it her mission to bring her findings to every kitchen. Her ultimate goal is making cooking more of a pleasure for all.
Tuyet Pham is an award-winning Saigonese chef passionate about delicious and healthful foods. At HealthyKitchen101, she develops recipes and collaborates with our Research, Testing, and Review lab to evaluate the performance of cooking appliances. Her assessments add a strong authoritative voice to our product scoring process.
Lap is Head of the Research, Testing, and Review Team (RTR Team) at HealthyKitchen101.com, where he directs and supervises the testing of kitchen gadgets and appliances.