To put it simply a masticator extracts juice with the help of an auger, that’s why they are also known and referred to as single auger extractors. To enhance or maintain optimum juice quality, these machines operate at a very slow speed and therefore are sometimes also referred to as slow juicers – so we’ll use these names interchangeably throughout this article. They are more expensive as compared to centrifugals, have a larger footprint, offer higher yield and higher nutritional value, and are easier to clean.
Owing to the compact sizes of the newer models and countless benefits over centrifugal machines, the slow juice extractors are rapidly becoming very popular, especially among health-conscious people.
5 things to look for in such a device:
- Price: Single gear masticators are costlier compared to their centrifugal counterparts but are cheaper as compared to twin-gears. You can get your hands on one of these for as low as $200 and as high as $500, but we recommend not taking this path unless you can at least stretch to a model that cost somewhere around 300 bucks, it really doesn’t pay to go for the cheapest thing you can get. If you happen to have a space-challenged kitchen, consider a high-quality vertical which might cost you about $350.
- Size: Compared to the centrifugal extractors, horizontal single auger machines are bigger and heftier, and storing them can be hassle if you have a small kitchen. For example, the Sunkist SK860 Masticating Juicer is 13.5 x 12 x 7 inches. A good pick can be a vertical model as they would basically occupy as much space as a centrifugal one, for example the Omega Vert VRT352HD Heavy Duty Masticator is only 9 x 7 x 16 inches. But keep in mind that the vertical devices are slightly costlier.
- Brand: To get the most bang for your buck, you should consider buying from a well-known manufacturer only. While several new brands are available at a lower price, their performance is usually disappointing. We have personally tested several brands, but generally feel most comfortable recommending slow juicers manufactured by Omega, Breville, Hurom, Kuvings, Sunkist and L’Equip.
- Design: Most models of the horizontal singe-auger design are not as pretty as the centrifugal ones. Since they are primarily made for commercial use, their beauty is usually not a deciding factor. However, if you want a good looking piece of equipment that really embellishes your kitchen, the verticals made by Omega and Kuvings are pretty good choices; but we were literally astounded by the matchless beauty of the Breville BJS600XL Fountain Crush Masticating Slow Juicer.
How a masticating juicer works
Produce is inserted into the feed chute and you have to continuously push it with a plunger until it’s sucked in by the auger. The auger then compacts and crushes the produce into smaller pieces before squeezing out the liquid along a static screen. The crushing power breaks down the cell walls of foods, unlocking even more nutrients. Hard-to-juice leaves such as spinach, parsley etc. are also easily turned into fresh juice which drips into your container via the spout and the pulp is ejected through a separate outlet.
Types of masticating juicers
There are two types on the market at the time of writing and these are very easy to tell apart, they are distinguished by their shape i.e. horizontal designs (example) and the more modern styled verticals ones (see here). There isn’t that much of a difference between the two in terms of their workings or yield. The vertical models are a later invention and these were designed specifically to reduce the amount of storage space the horizontal machines required.
Benefits of a single-auger juicer
The types of devices we are covering here have a higher yield and maintain a much higher nutritional value in the produce, when compared to their faster entrants i.e. centrifugal juicers. The juice doesn’t get oxidized and thus can be stored for extended period of time. In addition to making juices, these incredible tools can also be used as food processors, wheatgrass extractors, nut butter makers, etc. Moreover, they are much less noisy as well as less messy, which makes them easier to clean when you’ve finished each use. Last but not the least, since these appliances are targeted for commercial-use, they are normally very well built.
>> Read also: Best Masticating Juicers For Your Kitchen
Shortcomings of single augers
As compared to centrifugals, they take a lot more time to yield the same amount of juice – although they need much less produce for each cup of yield due to a more thorough method of extraction. Still the same, there are those that might find this to be annoying and wish for a quicker delivery. They also don’t juice the softer fruits very efficiently unless mixed with harder items. Some other issues that some people might find worth considering are their heavier weight, larger size and higher price, but the overall quality cannot be denied.