The KitchenAid 3-Speed Hand Blender KHB2351 wins a stick-blender shootout at one prominent testing organization, handling every task with ease. But some owners say it doesn't seem as sturdy or easy to use as the KitchenAid hand blender model it replaces.
Performs admirably in expert testing, but owner reviews are mixed. In one top test, the KitchenAid KHB2351 "sailed through pesto, smoothies, soup, hummus, whipped cream, and mayonnaise." This model has yet to accumulate many owner reviews, but a handful at both Amazon.com and Cooking.com say it makes short work of milkshakes and smoothies.
The KitchenAid includes a 3-cup BPA-free blending cup (helpful for drinks and small batches of sauce), whisk attachment (good for homemade mayo and whipping cream) and a 2.5-cup chopper bowl. "I chopped my green onions up in seconds," reports one owner at Cooking.com.
An Amazon.com customer complains that the KitchenAid doesn't do well with tough tasks such as blending beans for refried beans or thick soups, and it had issues with the blender detaching.
Mixed reviews for comfort and ease of use. Expert testers say the KitchenAid KHB2351 is comfortable and easy to use. They also say the blending shaft detaches easily (like most of the parts, it is dishwasher-safe), and unlike most hand blenders, the KitchenAid doesn't place any time limits on blending.
Users appreciate the included cotton drawstring storage bag that has pockets for each component and is machine-washable.
But not all owners are pleased. One Amazon.com customer received the KHB2351 as a warranty replacement for an older KitchenAid hand blender. "This new model is worse than the old model in almost every way," he writes. The user points to a few key differences, including three speeds instead of continuously variable speeds, a chopping bowl lid that rests on top instead of snapping on and a lower-powered high speed.
Another Amazon.com reviewer finds the KHB2351 tiring to use. "The button to turn it on and off is way too hard to press and is fatiguing when using it," he writes.
Strong warranty, but some owners question quality. The KitchenAid KHB2351 boasts a stainless-steel blending shaft -- not plastic -- and an unlimited 1-year warranty, so if it fails within the first year, KitchenAid will replace it for free.
However, after receiving the KHB2351 as a warranty replacement when the older model failed, a couple of Amazon.com customers say the new KitchenAid doesn't have the same quality build as the now-discontinued KitchenAid KHB100 it replaces
"The quality is not as good," one writes. "It seems to be more…lightweight in comparison. It has a twist and lock method of connecting the attachments instead of a click and safety release button. …Had I bought this for myself, I would have taken it right back to the store and got my money back."
Measuring nearly 16 inches long, the KitchenAid KHB2351 is about the same size as other hand blenders in its price range -- but it's relatively lightweight at 1.9 pounds. The shaft is polished stainless steel, and the handle is available in either black or a brushed-metal finish.
1. Cook's Illustrated Magazine
After using eight hand blenders (including the KitchenAid KHB2351) to concoct pesto, smoothies, soup, whipped cream and mayonnaise, Cook's Illustrated editors find only one model that they can recommend with no reservations. Only subscribers can view the results.
Review: KitchenAid 3-Speed Hand Blender, Editors of Cook's Illustrated magazine, Updated Sept. 2012
Six owners review the KitchenAid KHB2351 hand blender here. Half say it works fine, but the other half give it low marks for design flaws. A couple say they are disappointed that the quality isn't as high as the model it replaces.
Review: KitchenAid 3-Speed Immersion Blender, Contour Silver, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of Sept. 2012
The KitchenAid KHB2351 stick blender garners half a dozen owner reviews at Cooking.com -- all short and overwhelmingly positive. Only one reviewer posts a small quibble, saying the blender feels "a little heavy."
Review: Contour Silver 3-Speed Immersion Blender by KitchenAid, Contributors to Cooking.com, As of Sept. 2012
4. Bon Appetit
Bon Appétit editors name the KitchenAid immersion blender (no model number) as their favorite immersion blender. However, they just name the product without specifying their methodology.
Review: In the Kitchen Tools: Blender, Editors of BonAppetit.com, April 2008