Juice Off: Breville's Juice Fountain Plus vs. The Jack LaLanne Power Juicer Express
There are lots of options out there. Some cost as little as $30. My first juicer was one of the cheapest on the market: the base model from Black and Decker. And it fried itself, smoking and spewing out charred vegetable juice, after about two months of use.
So today we're going to look at two models that are still reasonably priced, but much sturdier: The Juice Fountain Plus (~$150) from Breville, which is the juicer used in the hit documentary Fat Sick and Nearly Dead, which the company sent me for review, and the Jack LaLanne Power Juicer Express (~$100), one of the most popular juicers sold in department stores like Walmart and Target. (It was sold out at both retailers in North Miami when I went out to buy it.)
|The Breville Juice Fountain Plus (left) faces off with the Jack LaLanne Power Juicer Express|
To test these babies, I started with two plates of produce. I used veggies of different textures, to test how each juicer fared with leafy greens and more water-dense foods as well.
I used six large carrots, four stalks of celery, two stalks of bok choy, one medium-sized Golden Delicious apple, one half cucumber, a small piece of ginger, and a dinner plate full of spinach in each juicer. Most everything was organic.
I started with the Breville Juice Fountain Plus, which is far more attractive. Unlike the Jack LaLanne, this one comes with a handy juice catcher/pitcher, which is also a measuring cup. Another nice feature: it comes with its own scrub brush, specifically designed for cleaning the juicer blade. And the pulp collector is opaque, so you don't see all the messy stuff as you juice. And carrots can't stain through the plastic, as they do with transparent pulp collectors.
The juicer has two speeds (high and low) and comes with a guide that gives you a sense of what speed to use for what kind of vegetable or fruit. Cabbage, and I assume other leafy vegetables (spinach and kale were not listed in the chart - bummer), should be juiced at low speed. Same goes for really soft fruits like plums, raspberries, and tomatoes. Carrots, apples, and celery should be juiced at high speeds. So I adjusted the speed as I juiced, and alternated between less aqueous roughage like spinach and the leaves from the bok choy, and the really watery stuff like the celery, cucumber, and bok choy stalks.
The result was about 800 milliliters of fresh vegetable juice, which amounted to about two and a half brimming wine glasses of beautiful, fragrant juice.