You may be confused by the term “hand blender.” Let me break it down for you, answering what a hand blender is, and answering the popular question of “Can I make powders with hand blenders?”
Basically, a hand blender is a small kitchen tool that you use for blending things by hand. The closest thing I could compare a hand blender to is an electric toothbrush. It has a small body with a motor inside it, a long neck, and a blending utensil on the end. It basically works the exact same as an electric toothbrush.
Click the on button, hold your hand blender inside your glass or bowl, and watch as your ingredients are smoothly and quickly ground. Another term for hand blender is “immersion blender,” and this is because you can use it inside of any kind of bowl or container for grinding and blending.
What Can a Hand Blender Do?
A hand blender can do a lot of different things, and they also come with a wide variety of extensions and accessories. It is important to understand before we get into the exact list of what hand blenders can do that not all of them are created equally. Some cheaper hand blenders cannot perform every task on the list.
However, every quality hand blender can indeed do everything on the list. A quality hand blender will come with the right attachments and the right amount of power to do all your basic mixing and blending. Let’s take a detailed look at exactly what these great little machines can accomplish.
Aerating: Aerating is introducing air into your mixture, which is generally done by beating or whisking. You can do this with a hand blender, and it is generally used for beating eggs.
Blending: Hand blenders are excellent for blending, as the name would suggest. You can mix and combine all your ingredients to make a uniform mixture that is smooth and perfectly blended. All your ingredients will be blended together to create one unique mixture. A hand blender can replace a spoon or whisk for this task.
Chopping: Hand blenders are great for chopping larger ingredients into small portions rather than using a knife. Normally you would do this in a chopper bowl, and you would use the hand blender for chopping onions, celery, and anything similar.
Creaming: Creaming is the term used to describe creaming butter or any kind of buttery mix for baking. Rather than using an electric mixer or wooden spoon, you can very easily cream your mixture just with a hand blender.
Crushing: Crushing is similar to blending and pulverizing. This is when you take food and crush it into a smaller form by using your hand blender instead of a mortar and pestle. Using a hand blender to crush your ingredients takes away the strain of doing it yourself with your own hands. One of the most common things to crush is ice, and you had better make sure your blender is quality before using it to crush apart ice for a specific recipe.
Emulsifying: Emulsifying is like blending, only a little more hardcore and a little more difficult. Emulsifying involves blending two extremely different ingredients into one perfect emulsion. You can do this with a hand blender, but you will need to bring your patience along.
Foaming: This is not to be confused with frothing. Foaming is when you agitate a liquid to make it a type of foam. This is generally done with milk and a hand blender, but you can also do it by injecting hot steam into liquid milk.
Frothing: Frothing is what you get on your coffee house drinks, like a cappuccino or a macchiato. Frothing takes milk and turns it into a bubbly foam that you can slather onto a beverage. It makes the milk sweeter and lighter, and it turns it into a foam for mostly decorative purposes.
Grinding: Finally, we have come to grinding. This is what we came here for, to discover if you can make powders with a hand blender. And the answer to the question is a resounding yes! You can absolutely grind nuts or spices into powder by using your hand blender.
This is typically done using either a food processor or a spice grinder, or even a special coffee grinder or bean grinder. However, it can indeed be done with a hand blender. As you have already seen from this long list of blender capabilities, grinding is no big deal with a hand blender!
This is a great specialized tool that can grind your coffee beans, your spices, and your nuts into a fine powder. You can then use that fine powder for cooking, for adding into smoothies, or for putting into capsules and taking as a supplement. You can also use a hand blender for grinding coffee beans into coffee grounds.
Stirring: Hand blenders are excellent for stirring ingredients instead of using a spoon or a spatula. You can set the hand blender to a low speed and use it for stirring, which will be much quicker and less painful than using a spoon and your hand.
Whipping & Whisking: Whisking is one of the most annoying preparations when baking or making food. Nobody likes standing over the bowl and whisking with that giant balloon-shaped wire mixer. However, you don’t have to do it anymore! You can now use a quality hand blender to do all the whisking for you. Put the whisk and the fork down and pick up your hand blender.
Can I Make Powders with Hand Blenders: Final Thoughts
As you can see, you get infinite uses out of a hand blender. These tools are easy to store, you can keep it in a drawer rather than have to stand it up in a cupboard, and they just take a minute to clean. You can use them for stirring, shredding, pulverizing, and even mashing.
And you can definitely use a hand blender for grinding and making powders. Throw away the outdated mortar and pestle and get yourself a hand blender! You can use it to turn all your spices into fine powders.