Immersion blenders check all the right boxes for the perfect kitchen tool; they’re easy to use, effective, and time-saving! You can mix just about anything with them, but you might be wondering if it’s safe to use them on steaming hot liquids. Let’s find out!
You can use immersion blenders in hot liquids. Plastic melting and motor overheating are unlikely risk factors for high-quality immersion blenders, but they can occur in some cases. It’s best to let the soup cool down a bit and follow safety tips to avoid burn injuries or motor damage.
In this article, I’ll go over everything you need to know about using blenders on hot soups and how you can prevent any serious harm to yourself or your blender. Let’s get into it!
Risks of Using Immersion Blenders in Hot Liquid
High-quality pro immersion blenders — especially from established brands — generally won’t break, melt, or overheat when used in hot liquid. They’re tested for such use vigorously before reaching the supermarket shelves.
However, we can’t always expect manufacturers to uphold these quality standards. Not every brand is as reliable as Braun or Vitamix, so it’s best to be as careful as possible when using yours in hot liquid.
Here are some risk factors to keep in mind:
Motor Overheating Concerns
Some manufacturers include warnings in their user manuals about the potential damage hot liquids could inflict on the blender. For instance, a hot bowl could overheat the blender’s spinning motor, reducing its lifespan.
Think about it, a motor spinning at high RPMs produces lots of heat on its own. Lower it down into hot soup, and you could imagine how all of that heat buildup could be detrimental to motor health over time.
Could Burn Away the Lubricant
There’s another risk factor related to the exposure of immersion blenders to hot liquids, and it’s about potentially burning away the motor’s lubricant. Immersion blenders come with lubrication pre-applied around their spinning parts, and the lubricant can melt away with continuous use in hot liquids.
This could drive up the motor’s friction, significantly reducing the blender’s lifespan. Again, higher-quality handheld blenders don’t have these issues, but it’s still a risk factor to keep in mind.
Most immersion blenders are made out of plastic. Aside from the metal blades of the spinning motor, the entire body usually consists of plastic.
While premium brands test out their products in hot liquids before producing them for the masses, many manufacturers tend to skimp out on plastic quality. This has resulted in many people complaining about their shriveled and disfigured immersion blenders on online forums after very little use in steaming hot liquids.
Keep in mind that this might not be the case with high-quality products from established brands. Still, not every blender is the same. If you’ve got a budget immersion blender at home with a not-so-popular brand name, you might want to keep all of the above risk factors in mind.
Plastic shriveling under high temperatures isn’t just a concern for your blender; it’s also for your health! Since the blender goes inside your soup or hot liquid, plastic shriveling can contaminate your food with plastic.
To completely steer clear of the risks of ingesting plastic with your food, make sure you buy an immersion blender with a stainless steel bottom such as the GE Immersion Blender on Amazon.
This 2-speed multipurpose blender cleans easily and transitions smoothly from low to high speed operation, making blending a breeze. It’s also designed for one-hand operation so you can keep adding ingredients as you blend, and packs plenty of punch thanks to 500w of power.
Traditional blenders have storage containers with a lid on top that keeps all liquid inside secured shut. However, handheld immersion blenders miss out on that luxury, which makes them more prone to splashing. They work like egg beaters, so you’d have to lower the spinning blades into the hot liquid — and that’s not the safest way to blend your steaming hot soup!
So, even if your blender’s plastic and motor are sturdy enough to take on high temperatures, you could still leave yourself with some severe burns. The best way to prevent injury risks is to wait it out and let the soup cool down a bit. But if that’s not an option, use the blender at low to medium speeds to minimize splashing and always wear kitchen gloves.
Safety Tips for Using Immersion Blenders in Hot Liquid
Keeping the above risk factors in mind, let’s now look at some of the safety tips you should follow when using a handheld blender in hot liquid.
No Glass Containers
When blending the hot soup, you should always use a bowl that’s sturdy enough. Materials like glass or thin plastic are usually a no-go since they can crack and inflict serious burns as the soup goes everywhere.
Heat can drastically reduce the structural integrity of those materials. The aggressively spinning blender blades don’t help with these risks, so you should only work with bowls that can handle high temperatures (i.e., heat-resistant ones).
The best possible option is to use a steel bowl as they can’t shatter no matter how hot they get. You can even use a high-quality ceramic bowl, as they also have a pretty high tolerance to heat.
While we’re on the topic of containers, make sure to use a tall one as well! This one’s a pro tip to minimize splashes while blending a hot meal. Even if the soup splatters, most splashes won’t go high enough to escape a tall container.
Wear Gloves and Eye Protection
If you’re going to blend a boiling hot bowl with a handheld immersion blender, you must at least do so with appropriate protection. This includes wearing kitchen gloves and face protection to keep your hands and eyes safe from splash burns. You should also wear clothing that covers you well with an apron on top.
Go Slow (or at Least, Start Slow)
Make sure you run your immersion blender at the slowest setting — after all, you’re blending hot liquids with no lid on top! If your bowl needs a more aggressive blend, a safer way is to insert the blender in the bowl, start at the lowest setting, and gradually increase the speed to avoid large splatters.
Another tip to keep in mind is to only spin the blades when they’re fully submerged. If you push the blender inside hot soup with blades turned on, it’s going to splatter everywhere (unless you’re using a high container). This might seem obvious, but it’s normal for people to make this mistake in a hurry!
Wait for It To Cool Down
Having stated all of the above safety tips, I’ll finish this section with the best one of them all — just wait for it to cool down a bit! Sure, time is of the essence in some situations, such as when guests are waiting outside for dinner. But in most other scenarios, it’s not worth the risk to be in such a hurry to blend your soup.
The more it cools down, the safer the entire process becomes for you, your blender, and your bowl! Once you achieve your desired texture, you can always back it back on the heat before serving.