14 Surprising Ways to Use an Immersion Blender

A stainless steel hand blender set with various attachments, including a whisk, a mixing blade, a beaker, and a chopper bowl, is arranged on a white surface.

An immersion blender takes all the power of a full-size blender and puts it into the palm of your hand. Here are 14 clever immersion blender uses that prove this versatile appliance deserves a spot in your alpha-gal friendly kitchen.

The information provided on this site is based on my personal experience living with alpha-gal syndrome. I consistently cite and link to expert sources, but nothing published on this site should be perceived as medical advice.

Alpha-gal sensitivities vary by person. You should understand your dietary restrictions, making any adjustments needed, and directing any questions to your physician.

After pumpkin spice everything, nothing screams, “It’s fall, y’all!” like butternut squash soup. But the first time I made it, disaster struck. While trying to relocate the hot soup from the stovetop to my blender, I managed to spill half of it on myself. Ouch! The very next day I purchased an immersion blender, and no more sad soup spills for me!

While this little gadget is most commonly associated with converting simmering soups into smooth bisques, it can stand in for more than your traditional countertop blender. In fact, an immersion blender is one of the most versatile kitchen appliances, serving as a stand-in for your food processor and heavy stand mixer from time to time. Whether pureeing soups, blending smoothies, or whipping up homemade mayonnaise, this handheld appliance can handle it all! In this article, I’ll walk you through 14 ways to use an immersion blender in your kitchen.

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In This Article

What is an Immersion Blender?

Also known as a hand blender or stick blender, an immersion blender is a kitchen tool that looks like a metal stick with a very sharp blade on one end and controls on the other. It can chop, whip, puree, and emulsify like a countertop blender. But unlike a traditional blender, which requires you to transfer your food into it for processing, an immersion blender is placed directly into the bowl or pot you are using to prepare your food. 

A hand blender with a metal blade attachment is laid on a countertop. A clear plastic container stands upright nearby.
Photo Credit: Canva.

Most good immersion blenders have a power button and variable speed settings, allowing you to adjust the speed depending on your desired results. Some immersion blenders have optional accessories like a whisk attachment, mini food processor, or dedicated blending jars. 

Sage Advice: If your immersion blender doesn’t come with a dedicated blending jar, a wide-mouth canning jar is great for immersion blending.

Ways To Use an Immersion Blender

While immersion blenders are most commonly used to puree soups, they can do so much more. See how this kitchen helper has you covered from soup to nuts. I’m not even joking—this tool can actually chop nuts!

Colorful table setting with bowls of creamy orange soup garnished with coconut flakes and herbs, accompanied by various types of bread, a bowl of salt, and a plate of additional toppings.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

1. Pureeing a Pot of Soup

One of the best ways to use your stick blender is when simmering a pot of soup. Instead of transferring the hot liquid to a countertop blender, all of the pureeing takes place right in the pot. Whether you want to blend a few veggies to add a little texture to a chunky vegetable stew or make your tomato basil bisque silky smooth, the immersion blender delivers the power you need right in your hands.

A small glass bowl filled with white sauce or dip, garnished with chopped green herbs, placed on a wooden cutting board. Some herbs are scattered around on the board.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

2. Effortlessly Emulsify Salad Dressings and Marinades

While you can make a simple vinaigrette by placing all of the ingredients in a jar and shaking, creamy dressings must be properly emulsified to prevent the dressing from separating. A stick blender can do the job quickly and efficiently. It also does a fantastic job chopping up ingredients like fresh herbs and shallots that can add a burst of flavor to your homemade dressings. 

Photo Credit: Canva.

3. Crafting Smooth Spreads

Another fantastic use for a handheld blender is making spreads like homemade mayonnaise, aioli, or toum for this chicken shawarma plate. The key to making these creamy spreads is to blend oil and eggs while incorporating air. While that may sound intimidating, an immersion blender can do all the work in a fraction of the time. 

A hand with red nail polish uses a piping bag to apply cream on small chocolate and vanilla desserts on a countertop.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

4. Swiftly Whip Up Homemade Whipped Cream

An immersion blender makes homemade whipped cream easy. Pour heavy whipping cream or your favorite plant-based cream into a wide-mouth mason jar and blend it for a few seconds on the lowest setting. Add your favorite sweeteners and flavor extracts — like alpha-gal friendly sugar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, almond extract, or a little rum — and blend a little longer until stiff peaks form.

Sage Advice: Be sure you don’t have too much with your immersion blender and overdo it. It doesn’t take long for your whipped cream to turn into butter!

A white plate with rigatoni pasta topped with tomato sauce and grated cheese, placed on a gray surface. Fresh tomatoes and another plate of food are visible in the background.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

5. Perfecting Silky Sauces

Whipping up smooth homemade spaghetti sauce is so much easier using an immersion blender instead of a full-sized blender. Just like making soup, transferring piping hot sauce from the pot on your stove into a blender pitcher on your counter is a hassle and can even be dangerous. Instead, grab your immersion blender for smooth sauce without the mess (or need to pull burn cream out of your first aid kit).

A smoothie with blueberries, strawberries and raspberries.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

6. Blending Smoothies and Milkshakes

Who doesn’t love a homemade smoothie or milkshake? Making them with an immersion blender means less mess and less clean-up. If your serving container is wide enough to fit the blade, you can prepare and serve your smoothies and shakes in the same container. Put in your ice cream, yogurt, fresh or frozen fruit, and liquid, then puree until smooth. It’s as simple as that!

A bowl of pesto sauce surrounded by basil leaves.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

7. Mixing Pesto and Hummus

Pesto, hummus, and other thick spreads and dips are an excellent way to use an immersion blender. The handheld blender quickly breaks down basil leaves, cooked chickpeas, and other ingredients — all without pulling your bulky food processor out of the cabinet.

A person pours milk into a bowl while whisking ingredients. Eggs, a spoon, and a pan are on the counter.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

8. Whipping Up Wonderful Batters

Pancake batter must be fully blended to create perfectly soft, fluffy results. The same is true for waffle, popovers, and crepe batter. You can skip the gym and get in an arm workout by mixing batter in a bowl with a whisk — or you can use a stick blender directly in the mixing bowl for great results.

A jar of strawberry jam with a spoon, surrounded by fresh whole and sliced strawberries in a glass bowl.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

9. Creating Jams and Fruit Sauces

Turning fruit into homemade jam or fruit sauce is a great way to use it up before it goes bad. Place fresh strawberries or other fruit in a saucepan, sprinkle some sugar on it, and add a bit of liquid. Then cover the pan and let the mixture simmer until the fruit breaks down. Then grab your immersion blender and puree the soft fruit in the pan until it reaches the desired consistency. For smooth sauces, puree it all the way, or for chunkier jams, puree it just a little bit. The choice is up to you! 

A baby in a highchair is being fed with a spoon by an adult. The baby is wearing a bib and appears to be eating puree or mashed food.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

10. Making Homemade Baby Food

Making homemade baby food is a breeze with an immersion blender. Butternut squash, sweet potatoes, peas — you name it. Simply steam or boil your veggies until they’re soft, then puree them directly in the pot to make delicious meals for your wee one. This way, you know exactly what’s going into your baby’s food, and it’s super fresh.

A jar of tomato sauce is surrounded by fresh tomatoes, a red chili pepper, and peeled garlic cloves on a dark surface. A black bowl with pickled jalapeños is partially visible.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

11. Stirring Sensational Salsa

Love fresh salsa? An immersion blender can help you make it fast and easy at home on taco night. Add fresh tomatoes, chopped onions, diced jalapenos, and fresh cilantro to a bowl. For a chunky salsa, blend at a low speed just until everything is combined. For a smoother salsa, crank up the speed and blend a bit longer.

Two cream-filled pastries topped with icing on a white plate, alongside a glass of tea with a spoon on the side, all set on a marble surface.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

12. Mastering Meringue

Whipping up meringue for pies or cookies is easy with an immersion blender using a whisk attachment. Simply beat egg whites and sugar until stiff peaks form. It’s perfect for making lemon meringue pie, pavlovas, or just a classic meringue cookie.

Two lavender lattes in glass cups with lavender flowers in the background
Photo Credit: Canva.

13. Frothing Milk Better Than a Barista

Want to make your lattes or hot chocolates extra special? Use an immersion blender to froth your milk. Heat the milk in a pot, then blend it until it’s nice and frothy. Pour it over your coffee or hot chocolate for an alpha-gal friendly, café-quality drink at home.

A close-up of a chocolate-covered donut topped with chopped nuts.
Photo Credit: YayImages.

14. Chopping Nuts Like a Champ

Your immersion blender can also help with chopping nuts for baking or as toppings for your dishes. Just place the nuts in a container and pulse with the immersion blender until they reach the desired consistency. This method is much easier than using a knife and cutting board, especially for large batches like the cup of chopped walnuts and pecans you need to make my favorite Mexican wedding cookies.

Commonly Asked Questions About Immersion Blenders

Do you have questions about immersion blenders? I have answers! Check out these frequently asked questions below. Don’t see your question here? Drop me a comment and I’ll do my best to get you an answer.

“I love using an immersion blender rather than using a regular blender for one simple reason: easy cleanup. There's not much to wash up and it's so easy to do!”

Can you use an immersion blender for mashed potatoes?

Yes, you can use an immersion blender for mashed potatoes, but I don’t recommend it because it’s easy to over-blend them and make them a paste-like texture. Personally, I prefer to mash them by hand or whip them using a handheld mixer. If you still want to give it a go, blend the potatoes in short bursts until you reach the desired consistency — which is hopefully this side of gummy and gross.

Can you use an immersion blender for smoothies?

Absolutely! A handheld blender is perfect for making smoothies. Just add your ingredients to a tall, wide-mouth jar or a deep bowl and blend until smooth.

Can you use an immersion blender to make whipped cream?

You betcha! An immersion blender is perfect for whipping cream. Simply pour heavy whipping cream or your favorite plant-based cream into a wide-mouth mason jar and blend until stiff peaks form, adding any sweeteners or flavorings desired about halfway through the process.

Can I use an immersion blender in a nonstick pan?

Yes, you can use an immersion blender in a non-stick pan, but be careful not to scratch the surface. You’ll want to avoid pressing the blade directly into the pan. 

Can you use an immersion blender to froth milk?

Absolutely! This is another genius way to use your immersion blender. Heat the milk of your choice in a pot and blend it until it’s frothy.

Can you use an immersion blender in hot foods?

Totally! Immersion blenders are designed to handle hot foods, making them ideal for pureeing soups directly in the pot. In fact, once you use an immersion blender to puree soup, you’ll likely never use a traditional blender for that purpose again!

Can you use an immersion blender in a Dutch oven?

Yep, you can use an immersion blender in a Dutch oven to blend soups, sauces, and other hot mixtures directly in the pot.

Do You Use an Immersion Blender in Your Kitchen?

What brand of immersion blender do you have? What’s your favorite way to use it? Any brilliant suggestions to add to this list? What about tips and tricks to pass along? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments section below.

Portions of this article originally appeared on Food Drink Life.

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