Buying a Vitamix used to be easy. They had 2 or 3 blenders. You bought one. You got everything. Now there are options. Upgrades, downgrades, containers, motors, tampers. Compact, professional, older, newer. You get the idea.
In this post, my goal is to tell you everything you need to know about the Vitamix 5200 so that you can decide whether this particular Vitamix is right for you.
And to that end, I’d like to start with the first and most important facts:
The Vitamix 5200 is an older model. Around 10 years old in fact. And it usually sells for $449.
Update: But one of the latest Vitamix models, the Vitamix Ascent A2300, with a host of new and additional features, plus all of the existing ones, and currently sells for LESS at Vitamix.com!
This is why despite being an outstanding machine – despite being the Vitamix I personally own and have done for almost 10 years! – I now recommend the A2300 over the 5200 for anyone looking for their first Vitamix.
Why do some people buy a Vitamix 5200 anyway? That’s what the remainder of this article is about.
Note: The Vitamix 5200 also didn’t make our “Best Vitamix of 2020” list, where the A2300 did.
You can keep reading for all the info, or use the table of contents below to quickly navigate through the review:
Table of Contents
- 1 What Defines the Vitamix 5200?
- 2 What Comes in the Box?
- 3 What Are the Main Features of the Vitamix 5200?
- 4 What Can I Make With the Vitamix 5200 Blender?
- 5 How do You Use a Vitamix 5200?
- 6 Does the Vitamix 5200 Blender Make Hot Soup?
- 7 Is the 5200 Dishwasher-Safe?
- 8 How do you Pulse a Vitamix 5200 Blender?
- 9 How Much Does a Vitamix 5200 Weigh?
- 10 What About Juicing With a Vitamix 5200?
- 11 What Do the Vitamix 5200 Reviews Say?
- 12 How Does the 5200 Compare With Other Vitamix Blenders?
- 12.1 The Vitamix 5200 vs 7500
- 12.2 The Vitamix 5200 vs 6300
- 12.3 The Vitamix 5200 vs 750
- 12.4 Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix pro 200
- 12.5 Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix 6000
- 12.6 Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix 500
- 12.7 Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix 300
- 12.8 Vs Vitamix E320
- 12.9 Vs Vitamix E310
- 12.10 Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix 5300
- 12.11 Vitamix 5200 vs Ninja 1200
- 12.12 Vitamix 5200 vs Nutribullet
- 12.13 Vitamix 5200 vs Ninja Ultima
- 12.14 Vitamix 5200 vs Blendtec Total
- 13 What Are the Most Common Problems With the Vitamix 5200?
- 14 My Verdict
What Defines the Vitamix 5200?
When it first came out, it did things that no one had seen before. Drop whole fruits and vegetables into a blender and watch it pulverize them in seconds? Spin so fast you could create hot soups without an oven or microwave?
Now these are the things Vitamix is known for, but back then, they were novel.
Why has the 5200 stuck around so long? Especially since other older Vitamix models have been discontinued? Probably for the simple reason that people love it. That and the way Vitamix continued to package and market it for a specific group of people: Those new to blending or processing who want the full Vitamix experience, but don’t need the bells and whistles of professional machines.
The main things that set the Vitamix 5200 apart from the other models available today are:
It’s a legacy model that many customers have owned for years. Some have speculated that the build quality was higher with these older machines and that the newer ones have taken shortcuts that reduce durability even if they’ve allowed for an increase in features.
We’ve investigated this claim and failed to find any specific evidence to support it. For example, any specific part that’s clearly cheaper or lower quality on newer machines. But the belief persists for some.
It’s got the best “startup resources”: Unlike any other Vitamix product, the 5200 comes with a cookbook and a Getting Started DVD with video tutorials on making the most important things with your Vitamix.
Those are the truly unique bits… but let’s backtrack for a moment now and take it from the top. What do you actually get when you buy a Vitamix 5200?
What Comes in the Box?
When you open up, you’ll probably first see the blender base and motor, which comes with a built-in cooling fan, a thermal protection system, and a 6ft retractable cord.
All pretty standard as far as Vitamix goes. Note that this is the older model motor, which is slightly noisier than the newer models that were fitted with extra sound-proofing. We’ll talk more about noise levels later.
Next, you’ll see the 64-ounce container. Two things you need to know about that:
a) This is the largest blender container by volume that you can get on any Vitamix. No other option is going to have you making bigger batches. But…
b) This is NOT the “low profile” container that comes with later models. It’s a little taller, standing 20.5 inches high.
Considering the taller 64-ounce container means two things: You need to make sure this size fits under your kitchen counter, and that with the lower profile container, say of the A2500 or A3500, you more space between the stainless steel blades and the sides of the container, which makes it easier to remove some of your thicker blends.
I have to say, in my later years as a 5200 owner, that’s one of the features from newer models I’ve coveted most. Both for removing blends and for cleaning purposes, I know that extra spaciousness inside would really be nice 🙂
Anyway, back to the box. You’ll also get
- A getting-started printed guide and a DVD version.
- A tamper to help you when blending products that tend to stick to the sides, like peanut butter and frozen desserts. Most Vitamixes come standard with these.
- A full seven-year warranty as standard.
What Are the Main Features of the Vitamix 5200?
Even though many of the following are common to most or all Vitamix blenders, it’s important to understand where the value lies
Important Feature #1: Stainless Steel Blades
It’s these bad boys that make sure even the hardest, seediest foods are processed to cellular level smoothness, in a short time.
It’s also these blades that ensure durability. You’re not going to crack these things. They’re not going to wear, or rust. They just keep going, day after day, year after year.
Important Feature #2: “Blend Anything” Motor
The 5200 has a 2 horsepower motor, with a variable speed dial that has 10 settings. If you’re new to Vitamix, the 2HP motor sounds cool, but once you get into using it, you realize the 10 speeds and the ability to slowly adjust between them during a blend is the best part.
You’ll see how the texture of your ingredients change, by starting the blend on 2, then increasing gradually to 8 over 30 seconds. Or starting on 5 but giving it a 30-second blast on 10 to finish things off.
The combination of the power and the sharpness of the steel blades mean that you really can put almost anything in your 5200 and blend it to the consistency you want. We’ll talk more about what you can do in a moment, but last note here: It’s the motor that has the warranty. It’s not just the stainless steel blades that are made to last, but the engine itself.
The 5200s are robust blenders. They are built to handle repeated daily use, which is why they come with a full seven-year warranty that can even be extended to ten years for a small fee.
Important Feature #3: The Speed to Create Heat
This isn’t a piece of hardware, but a product of the 2HP motor and stainless steel blades. The fact that you can turn cold ingredients into hot ones with heat friction from the blades is what allows the Vitamix 5200 blender to be so much more than just a morning smoothie maker.
Important Feature #4: Cooling Fan
Another important feature is the built-in cooling fan. This ensures that the unit does not burn out, especially when churning through hot foods. It also means you do not have to pause between smoothies, so everyone in the family can eat at the same time – a must for a busy family mealtime.
What Can I Make With the Vitamix 5200 Blender?
Many users have shared their experiences of using the blender four to five times a day and it standing up to high levels of use over years. You’ll be surprised how versatile a blender this can be in your day-to-day cooking. Smoothie for breakfast, soup for lunch, pesto to go with your roast chicken for dinner.
It is sturdy and powerful, which means there are few things you can’t make with it – okay, maybe not a juicy ribeye cooked to perfection, but still, your options are broad!
Here is a list of the things you’ll make with ease in your 5200:
- Nut butters
- Frozen desserts
- Whole grain flours
- Beauty creams, scrubs, and face masks
- Frosted icing
- Crushed ice
- Juices – extra accessories required, but it is possible.
For #inspo on a few specific things, check out this epic curried carrot soup recipe:
Or if that’s not your thing, maybe Mint Chocolate Sandwich Cookies are?
Suffice it to say, you won’t ever make all the things you could possibly make with your Vitamix.
How do You Use a Vitamix 5200?
If you are unsure of how to use the Vitamix 5200 blender, you have several options for learning how to get the most out of your blender. First, of course, is the Vitamix instruction manual. This will give you step-by-step instructions on all the functions of your new machine.
If, however, you need a more visual medium for instructions, Vitamix offers a wide variety of videos on their website and on YouTube that teach you how to make many different kinds of drinks. These videos can give you some great ideas of how to get the most out of your appliance.
Does the Vitamix 5200 Blender Make Hot Soup?
One of the biggest questions I’ve heard regarding the Vitamix 5200 is whether or not it can make soup. The answer is a resounding yes. Soup was always something my mom slaved over the stovetop making for hours and hours in the winter, but now? You can heat ingredients of a soup in 6 minutes on full power.
With the Vitamix 5200 blender, you can effectively “cook” soup with your blender. The sheer power of the blades can actually blend and heat cold ingredients into a hot soup in approximately 6 minutes. I have read about some experiments across various health-food blogs, and there are even users that have achieved hot soup in as little as 3 minutes.
The other “non-cook” option is, of course, to blend pre-roasted warm veggies (my favorite is butternut squash or pumpkin) with chicken or veggie broth, but why bother going through the effort of roasting when you can cook and blend all at once.
Here are a few popular Vitamix soup combinations
- Sweet potato (baked), apple, carrot, onion, stock cube, and water
- Red Thai curry paste, carrot, butternut squash, chilies, and coconut milk
- Broccoli, cheddar, garlic, stock cube, and water
Is the 5200 Dishwasher-Safe?
In the age of technology, it’s become rare to own a kitchen utensil or appliance that you can’t chuck straight into the dishwasher at the end of the day.
Unfortunately, the Vitamix 5200 blender container is not dishwasher-safe. However, don’t picture that you’re going to spend each evening scrubbing the blender and trying not to catch your fingers on the blades.
To properly clean the Vitamix, you simply add some water and a little squirt of detergent into the blender and then flick the blender on for 30 seconds or so to give it a thorough clean and rinse. There is no better way to get in behind the little blades than this.
While it isn’t dishwasher-safe, give it 30 seconds on high, and you’re done. Thankfully, it’s still a super easy cleanup for you and the 5200.
How do you Pulse a Vitamix 5200 Blender?
Some people say the 5200 doesn’t have a “pulse” function, but that’s not quite true. There’s a “max power” switch to the left of the main dial, and if, in the middle of a blend, you flick that thing up, you’ll get yourself a pretty nice pulse.
If you want a more gentle pulse, you just quickly spin your dial to 10 (or 8, or 6?) as you’re blending on a lower speed. You can also do a micro pulse by switching the blend off, then flicking it on and off with the speed dial on 1.
How Much Does a Vitamix 5200 Weigh?
The Vitamix 5200 blender weighs approximately 11 pounds. This makes it a bit heavier than other models, but honestly, this is an appliance you want some weight in. You don’t want to have to hold it in place while you’re blending. You don’t want it shaking all over the counter top. When you use it, it feels sturdy and reliable.
What About Juicing With a Vitamix 5200?
If you are looking for a good juicer, the Vitamix 5200 blender can mix a good smoothie. However, if you are looking for a traditional juicer that will separate the pulp from the juice, the 5200 will not do that. This model is a traditional blender that will simply mix all the material in the pitcher. You could blend all the foods together and then strain the pulp, but most people will prefer a traditional juicer.
What Do the Vitamix 5200 Reviews Say?
Looking across the web, the reviews for the Vitamix 5200 blender are very good. This model has high ratings across all of the review sites I researched, scoring between four and five out of five. This average scores higher than that of many other blender brands.
Versatility – The flexibility of this unit is the thing that buyers liked most, especially the fact one minute you can be making soup and the next frozen cocktails.
Healthy fresh ice cream in minutes – Many users shared how easy it was to make ice creams by blending frozen fresh fruit with a little milk. A tasty and health-conscious dessert for the whole family to enjoy. My favorite is frozen banana with a splash of coconut milk and a couple of strawberries for color and flavor.
Ease of use – This is a very easy blender to use. Minimal food prep required, super competent blending, and quick cleaning.
Great recipes – Vitamix want their customers to get the most out of their blenders, so they provide great recipes. And because of their popularity, Vitamix-suitable recipes are splashed all over the web for you to try out.
Ongoing customer support – Vitamix provides great customer support, even for customers who have bought their blenders years earlier.
Noisy – Unfortunately, many customers do mention the noisiness of the blender. However, many who had owned other blenders did concede that they had all been noisy. The reality is that with a blender this powerful, there will be noise. It is the tradeoff that comes with having a blender that can blend almost anything.
Fixed blades – The blades are fixed and cannot be removed, which can make getting all of the food out a bit tricky. Vitamix do sell special spatulas that are designed to get in between the blades, but for some thick foods, it is still an issue.
Speed variation – If you buy this product, do not be tempted to skip watching the instruction DVD. We say this because you cannot leave this blender running at slow speeds for long periods without causing damage to the motor. If you do not vary the speed, you will quickly burn out the motor. This is explained in the video, but some users didn’t realize and then wondered why they were having motor issues.
How Does the 5200 Compare With Other Vitamix Blenders?
The Vitamix 5200 vs 7500
The 7500 is newer than the 5200 and is well worth looking at, especially if you want the latest and greatest on the market. The 7500 has a similar-sized container, but the base is wider. This makes it easier to get the blended food out of the container, especially thicker liquids.
It also has a slightly more powerful motor and is said to be quieter, but reviews show that it gets noisier over time, so that benefit might not stand the test of time. While it has some perks, the 7500 is considerably more expensive than the 5200, so if you’re looking for a stable and reliable family blending system, you might not need to make the leap in price and features to the 7500.
The Vitamix 5200 vs 6300
There is very little difference between the Vitamix 6300 and 5200. The only notable difference is that the 6300 has a preset function. The motor, blades, and containers are basically the same, so there appears to be minimal justification to spend more on the 6300.
The Vitamix 5200 vs 750
The Vitamix 750 series is designed for professional use in bars and cafes. It is definitely quieter (designed that way to keep customers happy) and the fact you can choose a preset setting, turn it on, and walk away is handy. However, similar to the 7500 comparison, I’m not sure it is worth the average home user paying an additional $100 or more for that functionality.
For me, the 5200 is the best option in the Vitamix range for regular family usage. It offers everything you need for daily use for a relatively low price. Given that the Vitamix motor strength is more or less the same across the board, there is little reason to spend substantially more for fancier settings.
If you’re still not convinced and think you might need a few of the more elaborate features, then please check out our review to find out more about getting the Vitamix 750 at the best price.
Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix pro 200
The Vitamix 5200 blender shares some common features with the professional series, while at the same time offering unique outstanding features to distinguish its capabilities. Some of the common features include the use of BPA-free Eastman Tritan copolyester material for the containers with the aim of boosting safety and durability.
The material used to make the containers is shatterproof so they serve you in the long term. They also allow for variable speeds, which plays a key role in boosting flexibility and creativity when they are in use.
They both come with 64-ounce container, but the professional blender has the addition of a dry grains container. The wet containers can hold different types of smoothies, soups, and sauces for a medium or large family. With the professional blender, you can mix dry grains to make flour and even stimulate your kneading process, allowing you to prepare dough for baking.
Both blenders come with two cookbooks so you can use your blender to the maximum. They both aim at meeting functionality as well as durability.
Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix 6000
While the 5200 model allows for different speeds, the 6000 model takes this a notch higher with the addition of an automated feature. This makes the 6000 model easier to use and more reliable since you do not have to wait for it to complete the blending process before you can stop it. The different speed settings will allow you to take on different ingredient sizes. However, the 6000 model comes with a pulse feature that will size down larger chunks.
Both feature a 64-ounce container that is strong and durable to serve you in the long term. The difference in the containers lies in the spill-proof, vented lid that comes with the 6000 model. This plays a key role in preventing spills, thus retaining all the content and preventing waste. The 2500 model has fewer features as compared to the 6000 model, though they meet on functionality and the ability to blend all your ingredients.
Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix 500
Other than sharing the same brand, both of these models are safe thanks to their BPA-free material that ensures you are not intoxicated. Their containers can both hold 64 ounces of liquid content. The series 500 features a spill-proof lid to prevent any wastage of your content as well as prevent you from dirtying your countertop. In addition, the lid comes with a removable plug, making it convenient when in use.
While both offer variable speed controls, thus boosting flexibility depending on your ingredients, the series 500 comes with three pre-programmed settings for more accuracy. With the aim of boosting efficiency as well as performance, it comes with a pulse feature to take on larger ingredients. The series 500 comes with a powerful motor to produce faster results. While both aim at delivering on quality and durability, the series 500 is powerful thanks to its powerful motor.
Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix 300
While these blenders have similar motors, the 5200 model is designed to meet more moderate blending requirements, whereas the professional series 300 model is designed to meet more demanding needs thanks to its powerful motor. This contributes towards blending a larger variety of ingredients ranging from fruits to grains in order to blend a smooth consistency.
They both come with 64-ounce container that are BPA-free, and they are also easy to store away when they are not in use. The size of the containers makes it ideal for use even with larger families.
Despite having multiple speeds, the professional series 300 model comes with ten variable speeds, allowing you to choose the texture and consistency you need. The 300 also comes with a pulse feature that allows you to gain full control when blending especially larger chunks of ingredients.
Vs Vitamix E320
Even though the E320 is a newer release, there are still reasons to buy the 5200 instead, provided you have tall kitchen cabinets that the 5200 container can slot under. For one, it’s cheaper. For two it’s probably more durable (a statement not supported by some empirical point, but by combining in my head all the anecdotes I’ve heard and read on this question in the last 5 years.)
Vs Vitamix E310
The E310 is cheaper, and that’s the only meaningful way it’s better than the 5200. Oh and maybe the shorter low profile container if you really need that. Otherwise, the E310 has a smaller container capacity (48oz), it’s louder, it has a shorter warranty and a 0.2HP smaller motor.
Vitamix 5200 vs Vitamix 5300
These two blender models may be easily confused as they share many features. Other than coming from the same manufacturer, they offer variable speed controls, allowing your results to have the textures you desire. In addition, they will both allow you the ability to rotate the dial for precise control. This ensures that you are always in control of the outcome.
The similarities do not stop at this, as they also come with a 64-ounce container that is ideal for use in a family setting. The difference lies in the motor capabilities, with the 5300 model offering a more high-performance motor. This means it can give similar results in a shorter time compared to the Vitamix 5200 blender. The design may also carry similar traits, but the 5300 comes in a more compact design that takes up less storage space.
Vitamix 5200 vs Ninja 1200
The Ninja blender 1200 is designed to make the blending process easier so everyone can obtain the best results without having to go through cookbooks and other blending material. This is due to its Auto-IQ technology that allows you to time the processes so the consistency is just right. Included are intelligent blending programs that serve the purpose of perfecting the experience as you will not have to guess what settings you need or how long you will need to blend.
Whether you want a smoothie, puree, or frozen drink, all you have to do is select your desired button and insert the ingredients. It also comes with a more compact design to help minimize the space required when in use as well as when stored. They share the similarity of meeting great safety standards and functioning with high performance. They are both BPA-free to prevent and their blades are strong and durable.
Vitamix 5200 vs Nutribullet
These two blenders vary both in design and performance capabilities. Concentrating the performance, functionality, and design, these two brands may have a few similarities; they come with quite a number of differences to remain competitive in the market. Comparing the designs, the Nutribullet has a more compact design with smaller dimensions, which makes it easy to store away when it is not in use.
It also comes with a powerful 1,700-watt motor to meet the functionality of the Vitamix. As an added advantage, it comes with hands-free SMART technology that makes it easier to use compared to the 5200. For those who would love to prepare soup, it also provides a heating cycle so your soup and sauces do not go cold after preparation. Despite the diverse differences, they are both strong and durable.
Vitamix 5200 vs Ninja Ultima
Shark Ninja is giving the Vitamix 5200 blender a run for their money. They are both designed to handle all the ingredients you put in them, but with a more competitive edge, the Ninja Ultima has the added advantage that it can also crush ice to help you make some cold beverages. You can throw in whole fruits without the risk of congesting your blender. Whereas the Vitamix 5200 comes with one container, the Ninja model comes with two cups that have sip-and-seal lids to keep your beverage intact.
While the Vitamix 5200 blender comes with variable speeds to help leave you in control, the boosting flexibility and creativity of the Ninja Ultima feature high-speed cyclonic technology to blend all types of ingredients and leave you with a smooth puree. The speed variables are better with the Ninja model with the availability of 10 speeds as well as a pulse feature so you are always in control.
Vitamix 5200 vs Blendtec Total
These two models vary in that the features they offer have a few similarities but also have significant differences in their design. They have powerful motors to help enhance their performance so you can have your beverage ready in no time. With the advancement in technology, the Blendtec Total blender beats the Vitamix 5200 blender as it comes with a digital touchpad that outlines all the controls.
This provides preprogrammed blending cycles to ensure that you have perfect beverages. However, both will allow you to produce different types of beverages, such as juices or purees, with the difference of how fast each can complete the process.
While the Vitamix 5200 can crush more or less all ingredients, including grains, the Blendtec model will meet this objective in addition to crushing even ice so you can enjoy a cold drink. In an effort for the Blendtec to boost safety, it comes with an auto shutoff feature so that, when it is not in use, it will automatically shut off, thus also saving on power.
What Are the Most Common Problems With the Vitamix 5200?
When reviewing the various issues that consumers have had with the Vitamix 5200, a few common concerns do arise. First, we should point out that these have nothing to do with the performance of the blender itself. The vast majority of users rave about the 5200.
So what concerns do people have? A few consumers have found the 5200 somewhat bulky. It isn’t exactly an “under the counter” model unless you have high cabinets. For this reason, most people prefer to store the Vitamix when not in use.
The other issue that a few people have had with the 5200 is that it can be fairly loud. If you are concerned with waking someone up when using it early in the morning, then you might have some issues with the Vitamix 5200. Other than these two issues, users love the Vitamix.
You won’t be unhappy having purchased a Vitamix 5200 unless you get caught up in the “what else is available” syndrome.
It didn’t make our “best Vitamix of 2020” list, only because a couple of the newer models I mentioned have better features for the same or lower prices. That said, I own a 5200 that’s now almost 10 years old, and it’s been life-changing, to say the least.
Vitamix have a reputation for making great kitchen appliances. And most importantly, they have a reputation for honoring their warranties and providing good quality and long-term customer support. These blenders may appear to be expensive, but they work and work well for years, so they represent great value for money. Consider it an investment in the health of you and your family for years to come.
I hope you found this review helpful, and if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask me in the comments. All the best!