This $28 hand blender is easy to use and easier to clean

It's dishwasher-safe ... aka perfect.
by Sarah Bracy Penn / / Source: TODAY

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I love making smoothies, but I seriously hate cleaning up.

Think about it: you assemble the blender, dirty a cutting board and knife and use a spoon to scoop something delicious into to the mix — all to later disassemble the blender and clean all the parts. Frankly, it's too much work for very little reward.

At least, that's what I thought until my aunt and uncle gave me an immersion blender.

If you feel my pain, consider the Cuisinart Smart Stick Hand Blender.

Cuisinart CSB-75BC Smart Stick Hand Blender, $28, Amazon

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Also available from Bed Bath & Beyond, Sur La Table and Target.

It is super easy to use and clean

For a smoothie, I simply chop the ingredients, throw them into a blender-safe cup, insert the Smart Stick and puree to my heart's content. Then I remove the blending shaft and toss it in with the dishes. Easy enough, right?

The removable wand is dishwasher safe. As soon as I started using it, I said goodbye to cleaning my blender's clunky pitcher!

It takes up no counter space

Another added pain to owning a blender is the counter space it requires. Because I live in a small apartment, I like to keep my tiny kitchen counter free of clutter and extraneous small appliances. For me, an immersion blender was the perfect solution. It's compact, making it easy to store.

Can you use it as a hand mixer?

You can sometimes use it to whip a batter, but if you're looking for something that operates like a hand mixer, try Cuisinart's step-up from my trusty immersion blender: the Smart Stick CSB-79 mixer which, for $10 more, comes with a whisk attachment for cake and brownie batters and other delicate consistencies. The whisk is also safe to remove and give to your kids who love to lick the batter!

Cuisinart CSB-79 Smart Stick 2 Speed Hand Blender, $38, Amazon

Also available from and Bed Bath & Beyond and Macy's.

Bottom line: Is it worth it?

The Cuisinart Smart Stick immersion blender perfectly blends fruits and veggies for smoothies and purees soups to creamy, decadent consistencies. It takes up absolutely no counter space and it's easy to clean. Plus, It's fairly inexpensive.

If you need a full blender for huge quantities of stuff, it may not be perfect for you. But, if you have a small kitchen, want to stay free of clutter and are tired of cleaning blender parts, it's great.

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