A blender is a kitchen and laboratory appliance used to mix, puree, or emulsify food and other substances. A stationary blender consists of a blender jar with blade at the bottom, rotated by a motor in the base. The newer immersion blender configuration has a motor on top connected by a shaft to a blade at the bottom, which can be used with any container.
Countertop blenders are designed to mix, purée, and chop food. Their strength is such that the ability to crush ice is an expected feature.
Blenders are used both in home and commercial kitchens for various purposes, including to:
Mix and crush ice in cocktails such as the Zombie, piña colada and frozen margarita
Crush ice and other ingredients in non-alcoholic drinks such as frappuccinos and smoothies
Make smooth purées of semi-solid ingredients, such as cooked vegetables and meat
Reduce small solids such as spices and seeds to powder or nut butters
Blend mixtures of powders, granules, and/or liquids thoroughly
Help dissolve solids into liquids
Blenders also have a variety of applications in microbiology and food science. In addition to standard food-type blenders, there is a variety of other configurations of blender for laboratories.