Summary: After about 10+ days of testing out the Vitamix A3500 blender, I recommend it as a solid addition for folks who have nutritional goals that involve eating more whole foods, vitamin-rich meals, or are interested in time-saving recipes — and for those interested in a high-performance kitchen appliance.


  • Vitamix is long heralded for its powerful and impressive blenders, and the A3500 is no exception
  • Easy to clean with simple touchscreen controls
  • Results are finely blended recipes that are seamlessly whipped to perfection
  • The accompanying recipe book is helpful and clear with a variety of options


  • Right around $700, the Vitamix A3500 is certainly an investment to consider
  • Some of the modes are very loud and disruptive (so, blending at early hours or late night is a no-go)
  • Works best with large-quantity recipes

As a self-described amateur but enthusiastic cook, I have a dirty little secret. Are you ready? I’ve never used a proper blender in my adult life.

“I’ve been a Brooklyn resident for about 10 years now and that means my countertop real estate is precious.”

I’ve been a Brooklyn resident for about 10 years now and that means my countertop real estate is precious. So I compromise a lot when it comes to kitchen gadgets — and tend to forgo larger-sized items in favor of mini versions. Think, instead of a large espresso machine, I’ll heat up almond milk in a sauce pan and use a handy milk frother instead. 

And if I want something like a smoothie? Since I live in a big city, there’s no shortage of bodegas, cafes, and even grocers in my neighborhood that’ll whip one up, day or night. Which means when it comes to blenders, they’ve been something of a faraway dream. In the past, I’ve opted for small food choppers, hand mixers, prepped *everything* by hand (not the most efficient) — or simply walked down the block for my smoothie. Options that are not very time- or cost-effective.

When I got the chance to test out the Vitamix A3500, I pounced on it. I’ve long considered introducing a blender — particularly a Vitamix option — into my life. Counter space or not, I was curious to see how this gadget would elevate my at-home cook prowess and see what all the fuss was about.

“Counter space or not, I was curious to see how this gadget would elevate my at-home cook prowess and see what all the fuss was about.”

In general, when it comes to cooking dishes I love, I know the power of investing in a good product (team cast iron pan over here). I’ve seen the buzz on Vitamix blenders and they’re particularly praised for their versatility and durability. On top of that, I also wanted to try out this product because I’d like to introduce a bit more variety in my meals — protein shakes, soups, sauces! — and this seemed like just the ticket.

Some context on my realistic routine before we dive in: I work from home, so making my own lunch is also a nice break from the work day. That also means that I’m often staring at my computer screen for at least eight hours and, by dinner time, I want something simple, healthy and quick. If I feel too fatigued from a hectic work day, I don’t hesitate to scroll through delivery apps for a meal or pick up something ready-made from the gourmet grocer down the street. I was curious to see how the Vitamix would level-up my at-home lunches and dinners. (Spoiler alert: I was impressed!)

Food processors versus blenders

A quick note before we proceed on the difference between blenders and food processors, for those of you who, like me, are interested in all-in-one kitchen appliances. Seasoned professionals who already know this can skip ahead!

“The Vitamix is particularly helpful for your liquid diet needs, while a food processor might be more helpful in food prep.”

A food processor is an appliance that cuts, chops, slices, shreds, and even purées food. Depending on the model and the features on the gadget, these appliances can help make everything from batters to juices, and even grind meat.

Now, blenders. They appear to be similar in many functions (like chopping, grinding, etc.), but blenders tend to rely on liquids (like, water, yogurt, milk) to create a swirling force that pulls the ingredients into a downward motion — much like a vortex — and continuously releases the ingredients upwards to create a smoother, silky combination.

That means the Vitamix is particularly helpful for your liquid diet needs, while a food processor might be more helpful in food prep. Now, let’s get to the review.

My Vitamix A3500 review

There’s no way around it, Vitamix has its own cult following with lots of passion (and social proof). Basically, the brand is well known for its line of powerful appliances that are easy to use.

And, the brand is also known for being on the pricier side in the kitchen gadget world. The Vitamix A3500 clocks in at $699.95, which for me is on the high end of my budget when it comes to purchasing new kitchen appliances. With that price and reputation in mind, I was pleasantly surprised at how it lived up to the hype, and impressed with the impact it had on my routine as well as some unexpected perks.

First impressions & setup

The Vitamix takes up a modest amount of space on my counter.

While the A3500 is a large appliance, I didn’t feel that it took up too much valuable counter space in my home. For some background, I have an open kitchen in my apartment, with one stone countertop and a stove and sink in the middle of the space. That’s it. And, I have a few other appliances out as well (a tea kettle, knife block, and coffee bean grinder).

The A3500 comes with a base, pitcher, recipe book, and a tamper to move around ingredients during or after blending.

The blender in itself isn’t compact (the quart has a capacity of 64 ounces) but the design is sleek with a stainless steel brushed finish, simple push-button controls, and a dial. The setup is quick: To assemble, set the large capacity container on top of the base, plug in, and you’re set. Easy peasy.

What I made in my Vitamix A3500

After one night of testing out the blender, I knew the A3500 was a keeper. Over the course of a little over a week, I made dips (twice in a row!), smoothies, soups, and even a zingy lemonade. The blender comes with a very helpful recipe book and I was able to select options from a rather large and inclusive variety of meals (including an entire section on making nut milks!). 

“With five program modes, a self-cleaning feature, touch controls, and a rather lightweight pitcher, putting together recipes or blending was seriously a breeze.”

The instructions in the recipe book — and the manual — are quite easy to follow, so even though I was a blender novice, I didn’t feel out of my element. The recipe book is extensive, so I dove right in before I felt comfortable enough to invent my own concoctions. With five program modes, a self-cleaning feature, touch controls, and a rather lightweight pitcher, putting together recipes or blending was seriously a breeze.

My first order of business? Making guacamole for taco night. Honestly, it went off without a hitch. I followed the recipe from the guide book to a T, pulsated the ingredients as stated, and the result was a deliciously savory guacamole that was made to order. (FYI: I ended up making this recipe again the next night).

The next day, I decided to perfect my home smoothie game during the work day. In the accompanying book, Vitamix provides a handy chart for blending numerous smoothie mixtures to your heart’s desires. I chose a simple but tasty combo: Apples, carrots, plain yogurt, and ice. There’s a smoothie program mode with the A3500 and in about 40 seconds, I had a super fresh smoothie. Be warned, this device is truly loud on smoothie mode and works up to its power in a matter of seconds, so if you’re living in an apartment and consider yourself an early bird, you might want to think twice about mixing up smoothies before normal waking hours.

Other recipes I whipped up over the rest of the 10-day test period included a savory and smoky cauliflower soup (with thanks to smoked paprika spice and fresh cauliflower), a tart and tangy basil lemonade, and a peanut butter and banana smoothie with a hint of cinnamon (major yum).

Cleaning the pitcher

The pitcher easily slots into place on the base of the product, so removing it for serving or cleaning was intuitive and not cumbersome in the slightest. To note, I always unplugged the blender in between uses, since there isn’t an automatic shut-off feature and I didn’t have a need to leave the product on for long periods while prepping.

The self-cleaning mode asks that you pour in a bit of warm water with a drop of soap, and in 60 seconds, you have a clean pitcher. This worked well in my experience — and because the pitcher is dishwasher safe, you have options.

Final thoughts

My time with the A3500 was positive, with a few caveats: 1) The blender was fantastic with large batches like guac or soups, but less convenient for one-person meals. 2) Smoothies could be quite tasty but sometimes they were a little too chunky (this could also be due to me being a complete freshman in the world of making smoothies at home). 3) The loudness on some modes can be really jarring or disruptive, so fair warning if you live with others or in an apartment building.

Overall, this blender was really easy to handle, easy to clean, and helped me feel more motivated to try new dishes or go the extra mile at dinner (making the soup took about 30 seconds). After using the blender for multiple days — and nights — in a row, my meals feel revitalized without being labor intensive. And I was pleased to discover how great it was for hosting, allowing for easy preparation of large batches of dip or soups to serve to guests. What’s not to love?

Stephanie Valente is a copywriter and editor covering wellness, commerce, lifestyle — and more — for publications like Brooklyn Magazine and The Good Trade. Based in Brooklyn, she’s often writing poetry, getting lost in a book, or hanging out with her dog.

This review is not sponsored and includes the author’s personal experience. Good Gear editors were gifted this product. Read more about our review process here.