The Magic Bullet is an intriguing, “As-Seen-on-TV” gadget that promises to blend, chop, slice, dice, and make ease of otherwise-tedious culinary tasks.
If you’re willing to shell out anywhere from $60 – $100 for this small blender, Homeland Housewares (the Bullet’s manufacturer) will deliver:
* A high-torque power base
* Cross and flat stainless steel blades
* A short cup and a tall cup
* Four party mugs with “comfort” lip rings
* Two shaker-steamer tops
* Two stay-fresh lids
* Recipe book
And what makes this Bullet so magical compared to a run-of-the-mill blender? Homeland cites some of the following:
* Grate, mince, chop vegetables and even cheese
* Blend smoothies and shakes
* Whip up instant meals for immediate microwaving
* Puree ingredients to make dips and spreads
So, does this gadget really live up to the manufacturer’s claims? Since becoming a “Bullet Buyer” several years ago, I admit the device has earned its keep. While there are many applications for the Bullet, operating generally involves the same routine:
1. Add ingredient(s) to appropriate-sized cup.
2. Screw lid, which is one of two blades, over the cup (while it’s inverted).
3. Flip and press the lid into the base and watch the Bullet puree. The longer you run the blades, the finer chopped/pureed everything becomes.
Wondering what types of applications I most often use my Bullet for, and how it holds up? Making smoothies is by far what I use it for most. The party mugs are especially useful for this, as they attach right to the blades. When blending is complete, simply remove the blades and attach a “comfort ring” over the threaded top of the cup. Drinking and blending from the same cup? Genius! This eliminates having to wash a blender carafe plus drinking glass when I make a smoothie! And the ingredients are blended nicely too; I like my smoothies semi pulpy, but longer time on the blades ensures a more liquid drink.
To make a breading for fish, poultry, or the like, I’ve found my Bullet to be very helpful. Toss in some corn chips and spices, blend to desired coarseness, and viola! Attach the “shaker” lid to the blending cup and pour on a delicious, homemade “shake-n-bake” style breading.
So after several years of moderate use, my Bullet has held up reasonably well, but I’m not going to say it’s been perfect; there are some flaws. Most notably, it often needs to be shaken, or I’ve had to unscrew the top and go inside to scrape contents that are plastered to the sides of the cup back down to the blades. And sometimes no matter what I do, it just seems not strong enough to puree food to the consistency I desire. It’s especially frustrating when it starts emitting a “hot electric” smell from running the blades too long. I’ve discovered short pulses and frequent shaking of the Bullet’s contents achieves the best results.
Cleanup is a snap, however, as blades and cups all fit nicely in the dishwasher. And having extra cups and two blade sets (albeit each serves a slightly different purpose) allows for simultaneous blending of different concoctions.
Some of the advertising hype Homeland cites, including how easy-to-make smoothies can bolster weight loss, is a bit outlandish. However, this device is a pleasant complement to a full-size blender and works well for smaller, every day grinding, smoothie-making, etc.
Should you decide you want to add the Magic Bullet to your kitchen arsenal, do yourself a favor and don’t order the Bullet from Homeland’s website or even off the infomercial. You’ll pay $99.99 plus shipping. Most major department stores carry the device for about $60, and at that price, the Bullet is a useful investment.