Features and design
The Mini Blender’s design strikes a fine balance between the brightly-coloured flashiness of the Breville Blend Active Personal and the functional dowdiness of the Morphy Richards Blend Express. Its chrome and black finish wouldn’t look out of place in a kitchen chock-full of expensive appliances, and it feels tough, too: the firm clunk as you clip the goblet into the blender’s base is reassuring.
This isn’t technically a smoothie maker, but Philips evidently has that in mind, as the machine comes with a dedicated 600ml cup with a sipping lid for your concoctions. There aren’t any recipes in the instruction manual, though, which is one of those annoying types that folds out like a map and tries to explain basic things with bafflingly obtuse drawings.
Unlike dedicated single-serving smoothie makers, where you blend your ingredients directly in the drinking cup, with the Philips model you have to do your blending in the goblet before pouring the smoothie into the supplied takeaway cup. The advantage is that the goblet’s width means there’s much more room for your ingredients, but the disadvantage is that there’s twice as much washing up to do.
How about smoothies?
Our smoothie tests are designed to see how well a machine can chop up tricky but healthy ingredients, such as kale or apple peel, and make them palatable in a smoothie. For the first test of the unit’s blending capabilities, we filled half the goblet with kale, put in one chopped banana and around 120g of mixed berries, then topped up to the 600ml mark with water.
After blending, the Philips presented a reasonable kale smoothie. There were still some chunks of kale leaf – it certainly wasn’t up there with the best kale smoothies – but it was still perfectly pleasant. The second smoothie test was less successful. This contains a cored apple cut into eight pieces with the skin left on, an orange split into eight segments and a sliced banana, along with four ice cubes and topped up with orange juice to the 600ml mark.
This smoothie was far too chunky, and after a 30-second blend there were still some stringy bits of apple skin in there. Even after another 30 seconds of blending the smoothie was still rather too bitty. Clearly, if you want good results from the Philips, you’ll need to take care about how finely you chop your ingredients before you put them in.
It’s not the best smoothie maker, but the Philips Daily Collection Mini Blender is a versatile machine at a good price. If you’re after a mini blender to use for multiple tasks and the odd smoothie, it’s a viable option.