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Vitamix is one of the best blender brands. You know you want one, but you’re torn between models. The struggle is real; how does one choose?
If you’re at a crossroads, keep reading to see if the Vitamix S55 S-Series personal blender is the right investment for you. [Note: this model has been retired by Vitamix and manufacture has been discontinued.]
Seeds, leaves, and chunks of ice. We’ve all been to smoothie shops and know those things aren’t supposed to be visible in our smoothies.
How do the professionals do it? I’m here to tell you those gorgeous, creamy, Instagram-perfect smoothies come from quality blenders like this one.
At a Glance
- Top shelf dishwasher safe
- 20-ounce personal blending cup
- 40-ounce blending container
- Variable speed dial
- 4 programmed speed settings
- Fits comfortably in most cabinets
- 5-Year full warranty
- A little loud (but not excessively)
- Tamper is needed in some cases
Vitamix is a terrific brand with an incredible reputation. Ever since the company appeared in the mid-twentieth century, it has upheld promoting whole foods and health as its core values.
Throughout the years, the company has engineered their machines to be more versatile, and durable enough to pass down from generation to generation. Seriously.
With that info in mind, let’s check out exactly what makes this blender the best.
Everything Tastes Better
Vitamix takes your carefully selected food pairings and blends them into incredibly smooth concoctions. The stainless steel blades are powered by 7 amps to completely pulverize foods into beautiful, homogeneous blends.
The natural sweetness of the produce is accentuated, and the fibers are broken down. Less than favorable bitter flavors, which often discourage many healthy eaters who are new to the green smoothie game, are lessened or neutralized while naturally sweet ingredients shine through.
How It Works
The many features available on this machine sound like they’re almost too good to be true, but trust me, Vitamix follows through on their promises.
The Vitamix S55 is designed so you don’t under- or over-blend (unless you want to, of course). The control panel has a control knob that works both as the dial indicator and the ‘push to start’ button.
This blender has 4 programmed speed settings and a “pulse” setting. Turn the dial to the desired setting (Smoothie, Power Blend, Dips and Spreads, or Frozen Desserts), and press on the center of the control knob to start.
What are “Power Blends,” you ask? Vitamix recommends this setting for creating a smooth mixture out of tougher textured and otherwise difficult ingredients that other blenders struggle to process, like thick leafy greens (with their stems), firm vegetables like roots, and protein powder.
You can also take the reins and blend to your own preference with the variable speed settings along the right side of the control knob.
Paired with the directions and recipe suggestions included in the user manual, you’ll be making delicious homemade beverages, appetizers, and desserts with whole ingredients in no time.
It’s for More Than Just Smoothies
Time and time again, users find themselves turning to the Vitamix to make so much more than just smoothies. You will love the versatility that’s on offer, and this is one appliance that won’t be left gathering dust at the back of the cabinet.
The programmed features described above are too tempting to ignore. You’re going to want to try to make hummus in this blender, banana n’ice cream, sauces, salad dressing, veggie purees! Vitamix owners love creating non-dairy milks, batters, baby food, and nut butters as well.
Smooth and creamy small-batch soups are another delicious option, just be sure to take the proper precautions and don’t add steaming-hot ingredients to the blender, since burns are a real risk.
This Time, It’s Personal
The Vitamix S55 is such a hit not only because of its relatively low price tag (for a Vitamix – please be warned that you might want to be sitting down, as these are still at the higher range for this product category), but because it’s personal-sized.
The 20-ounce personal blending container includes a no-spill lid, so you can make your smoothies to go in the same container. The lid also doubles as a great pouring spout for homemade dressings and sauces.
Made from BPA-free Eastman Tritan® plastic, the 20-ounce container is the perfect vessel for a morning smoothie. Toss in fruits, leafy greens, and liquid, and puree away.
Now, it’s not all roses. There is a bit of a thorn. Some users complain that chunks of food, ice, or powder may clump at the bottom of the container, or gunk up the area under the blades.
The good news is this is really the only complaint you’ll see about the S55, and doesn’t happen frequently if you follow the included directions for use and cleaning. The bad news is that it’s a significant complaint reported by enough people that buyers should be aware of the possibility going in.
If it’s not the result of user error, there’s a chance that blade positioning could be at fault here. Be sure to keep your blender blades clean and free of debris, and rinse the blades thoroughly immediately after use.
More Is Better
In this case, more is better. In addition to the personal sized travel blender cup, the Vitamix S55 includes a 40-ounce blender container as well, like you’d expect to see on an a full-sized model.
This makes it possible to double up recipes, puree soups, make bread dough, and more. Yeah, it mixes dough!
The 40-ounce container includes a two-part vented lid to add ingredients gradually, or allow steam to escape while blending hot ingredients.
Including two containers with this motor base has a few benefits.
For example, think food allergies. When one or two members of a bigger family have them, it’s nice to be able to avoid cross contamination without having to thoroughly wash all of the components between each use.
It only comes with one blade though, so you will still need to wash that between uses if this is a concern in your household.
Making a big meal, with a blended sauce and a salad dressing? Give the blade a quick rinse, pop on the second canister, and you’re ready to go without any need for dish duty in between. And if you’re ready to blend up breakfast but one of the containers is in the dishwasher, no problem – just pull out the other one.
I mentioned above that both containers are made of BPA-free Eastman Tritan® plastic. A lot of people are surprised – nay, disappointed – to discover the blender canisters aren’t made of glass. Don’t be sad, this is a good thing!
I, too, prefer glass containers for food storage. However, for appliances, I like plastic. BPA-free plastic for blenders and food processors means the unit is exceptionally lighter. It’s much easier to move between cabinet and counter, not to mention it makes pouring from the containers more manageable. And you’ll have a tough time breaking these containers as well.
Don’t Fear the Blender
Remember how I said this can be used to make dough? You can try that, and lots of other recipes from the included cookbook.
In it you’ll find 250 recipes to make in the S55, from Barley and Corn Salad to Cashew Cream, and Fall Flavors Ravioli to Oatmeal Breakfast Muffins with Raisins. When you’re thinking of blender meals, ravioli probably isn’t high on the list of things that come to mind, right? Vitamix definitely wants you to get the most out of this fine, long-lasting appliance.
Live the Life You Want
One of the things users love the most about this Vitamix is how it enables us to eat how we want to eat.
I’m big on knowing what goes in my food, and recognizing the ingredients. Yes, I’m that person in the grocery store kneeling to scan the canned food ingredients, and I thank you for your patience. Due to food intolerances and allergies, I’m often left to my own devices to make sauces, marinades, and dressings.
I fully depend on reliable kitchen appliances such as my food processor, immersion blender, and countertop blender. These gadgets help me to make flavorful food combinations I can enjoy, and that won’t make me sick, with fresh, whole ingredients.
Others who have nut allergies, a gluten intolerance, or who partake in alternative dietary lifestyles love this powerful little blender. It blends amazing juices full of fiber, mixes batters for gluten-free pancakes in seconds, and can churn out salt-free almond butter in only a few minutes. This appliance is also ideal for vegan, low-sugar, and raw food diets. Plus, there’s no need for added preservatives and artificial colors or flavorings when you go homemade.
Dimensions and Specs
The dimensions with the 20-ounce travel cup installed on the base are 8.3 x 5.9 x 14.6 inches, and with 40-ounce container it measures 8.3 x 5.9 x 15.7 inches.
The total weight comes to 12 pounds and 6 ounces, so it’s definitely an appliance that can be moved and stored fairly easy, though you might not want to lug it around regularly. Fortunately, it has an attractive appearance so you won’t mind displaying it on the countertop if necessary.
The electrical rating is 120 volts, 50/60 hertz, and 7 amps, all powered by a 3-pronged, grounded, 4-foot electrical cord. The motor base includes a radial cooling fan and thermal protection system to keep the unit from overheating.
- Motor base
- 20 oz. container with travel lid
- 40 oz. container with 2-part vented lid
- S-Series Blade Base
- Low Profile Tamper
- User Manual
Vitamix includes a 5-year full warranty on the S-Series, so be certain to register your product. It covers parts, performance, labor, and two-way shipping so you don’t have to foot the bill if you have any issues.
Care and Cleaning
My favorite part of any appliance: this is top shelf dishwasher safe! When you’re done with the base blade, remove it and rinse the threads so a buildup of food particles doesn’t accumulate.
The motor base only needs to be wiped down with a damp cloth as needed. Naturally, unplug it before cleaning, and immediately dry and polish with a cloth when you’re finished.
For the absolute best results, on a deep clean day, moisten a cotton swab with a degreaser and clean around the control knob. That way, it should continue to operate freely. There is an overflow opening in the back of the motor base, and it’s a good idea to occasionally perform the same cleaning method there.
Techniques, Tips, and Tricks
I’m a big fan of reading the user manual, and am happy to report the S55’s is really short!
The best technique to use this product is to ensure that the seal is snugly in place on the blade base. Make certain the container screws on until it’s just tight, and don’t overtighten it. While it seems counterintuitive, overtightening can cause the blender to leak. I know, weird.
The best tip is to layer the ingredients in the blender exactly as the user manual says. There are even little images for both the 20-ounce and 40-ounce containers that you can reference, so the recommended stacking order is obvious at a glance.
I didn’t realize I was blending so wrong for a long time, and after reviewing this manual, things make so much more sense now. It helps to know what order to add your ingredients in for the best possible results! Of course, whatever you layer, don’t fill your canister past about 2/3 full, which you can eyeball.
A tip is to use cubed ice. This might seem like a strange recommendation, but ice cubes will actually blend better in the Vitamix than crushed ice. The manufacturer has found the extra weight helps to push the other ingredients down towards the blades. It’s so easy!
If the natural weight of the ingredients doesn’t push the food down towards the blades, use the tamper. The low-profile tamper is modeled to precise dimensions to reach into the pitcher just above the blades (hence the “low-profile”). I use mine to push crushed cashews into the blades for nut butter.
One final trick: When making soup, don’t use raw produce. Steam 1-inch pieces of produce first in the microwave, and then add the ingredients and cooking liquid to the blender. That may seem like more work, but this process takes way less time than boiling on the stove. Now I get creamy sweet potato soup in less than 10 minutes with the microwave instead of over 20 minutes on the stovetop, so this trick is a thing.
Pro-tip: Don’t put the Vitamix containers in the microwave! These are not microwave safe. Vegetables may either be cooked in a separate microwave-safe dish, on the stovetop, or roasted in the oven for a fuller depth of flavor, then added to the blender.
Compare and Contrast: Vitamix S55 vs. Breville Boss To Go
If you’re loving what you’re seeing here but are thinking the full blender functionality is more than you’re looking for, check out the Breville Boss To Go. At a significantly lower price point, the Boss To Go replaces the 40-ounce and 20-ounce containers with lids with two 16-ounce and one 23-ounce BPA-free Eastman Tritan tumblers, plus two travel lids.
Breville Boss To Go Sport, available from Breville
Rather than offering multiple program and speed settings, this competitor is an easy to use model of the push and blend variety that turns out wonderful smoothies. Breville always provides quality products and we’re big fans of them here at Foodal. Read our full review of the Boss To Go here to see if it’s more your speed.
Of course, if you want to stick with Vitamix at a more competitive price, there is always the S55’s little sister, the S Series S30. Check out our review of this magnificent little machine [Note: this model has also been retired by the manufacturer]. Or, read our review of one of the latest offerings from Vitamix, the ONE.
The Next Best Thing
For a bare bones Vitamix blender, take a look at the entry level, space-saving ONE.
With simple controls, a 32-ounce blending container and a tamper, this might be the perfect model for you. Check out our review of the Vitamix ONE now.
Foodal’s Rating of the Vitamix S55
- Build Quality
One of the most powerful personal blenders on the market [Note: discontinued], the Vitamix S55 can power through ingredients like a premium full-sized blender, and blend up your morning smoothies with ease. And it takes up a smaller footprint, making it ideal for apartment and condo living. Vitamix is also well-known for keeping a stock of parts available for older models decades after they have been discontinued... so this small appliance will likely last you decades. It's pricey but worth it – the VALUE is there.
Before You Go…
This little countertop appliance is a great addition to any kitchen. If you’re looking to get your feet wet in the realm of high-end blenders, this is the place to start.
Its durable base, the two containers, and four programmed settings offer so much value for the right price. Also, how much do I LOVE that it’s dishwasher safe?! The Vitamix S55 is so easy to use that it’s hard to say anything bad about it.
Brushed Stainless Finish – Buy Used Now on Amazon!
Have questions about this personal blender? Ask us in the comments! We’d love to hear about your experiences with the S55.
Still shopping? Read these blender reviews next:
- Breville Super Q Blender: A Practical Blend of Beauty and Brawn
- The Vitamix 750 Is a Beautiful Work Horse for the Home Kitchen
- Breville Boss To Go: Lots of Power at a Moderate Price
Photos by Mike Quinn, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published June 10, 2018 Last updated September 7, 2022.
About Taylor Shaw-Hamp
Taylor Shaw-Hamp has loved food ever since she can remember. The more she grew, the more she discovered, and the more she had to know. Now she loves to write about her food adventures through recipes, product reviews, and blog posts. She can be found at local coffee shops across the world, so if you see her, stop by the table and say hi!