Once upon a time, Vitamix blenders were reserved for people with just a little too much disposable income. It was a purchase you made after you got a raise; Maybe after you skipped lattes for 6 months and dropped coins in a piggy bank.
Nowadays, the Vitamix product line has expanded so that there are blenders for different budgets. They’re still not cheap, but if you pick the right one, you’re no longer refinancing another possession just to get it.
The crowning glory of that expansion is the Vitamix E310, and in this review, I’m going to help you decide whether it’s the Vitamix for you.
From the top, I can tell you it’s not going to suit everyone. But if you’re in the approximately 60% majority of people (my estimate. Do not fact check :)) considering a Vitamix, I think it is right for you, and I believe I can make a clear case for why.
Obligatory FYI: The Vitamix E310 is currently on sale at Vitamix.com for about $60 off.
Table of Contents
- 1 How’s The Vitamix E310 Different?
- 2 What Can You Make With the Vitamix Explorian E310?
- 3 Last: The E310 is (Slightly) Noisier
- 4 How Are the Reviews for the E310?
- 5 Comparing the Vitamix Explorian E310
- 6 How Does The Warranty Compare?
- 7 Can You Buy Reconditioned?
- 8 Verdict
How’s The Vitamix E310 Different?
The E310 won our best Vitamix blender of the year award for a reason.
Later on we’ll get to topics like what it can do, but before anything else, you need to understand this…
Difference #1: The Price
It’s the most significant feature of this blender. The Vitamix Explorian E310 is shockingly affordable.
At $289 (currently on sale remember) it’s the cheapest new, full-featured* Vitamix you can buy. Even on sales, you don’t see other models come down this low.
What do I mean by full-featured?
- I mean it has the same 2HP motor as other more expensive models (Yes, some have 2.2HP but that 0.2 difference will never be noticed by most people with home use).
- It has the same 10 variable speed control that allows you to vary your textures with unlimited variation.
- It has the popular pulse feature for gently chopping (but not pureeing) salsa ingredients, nuts, and more.
- It has the convenient low profile container that’s easier to clean and fits more easily under kitchen cabinets.
So if that’s true…
Difference #2: “The Catch”
It’s got a 48oz container. That’s the catch.
Higher-level Vitamix machines (like it’s big brother the Explorian E320, or the feature-loaded Ascent models) have bigger 64oz containers that can make bigger batches. The E310 container is 25% smaller, meaning for large quantities (read large families), you’re either loading ingredients and blending twice… or everyone at the meal table is eating 25% less.
Oh and one more thing: You can’t upgrade the container.
Other Vitamix models (like the Ascent range) have motor bases where you can switch containers if you want to. If you buy a 48oz and realize it’s too small, you can purchase a 64oz container separately one day, and slap it on. That’s not possible with the Explorian series.
So this is the decision you have to make if you want to buy a Vitamix Explorian E310. Are you going to be ok with a 48oz container size?
Let me tell you who will be totally ok with a 48oz container size:
Individuals or couples who mainly want a smoothie in the morning, a protein shake here or there, a frozen dessert to share, on the weekend or some hummus and guacamole for a (small) party.
Have a look at this (awkward, but helpful) video to see the guy make two glasses of green smoothie (about 20oz per glass) and the dough for a loaf of bread with his 48oz container.
When that individual or couple has a baby in a few years and they want to make purees for the little one, the 48oz container is totally sufficient. You can make a batch, store it in the freezer and your baby will be eating whole food goodness for a week.
Now let me tell you who won’t be ok with 48oz:
Families of 3 and up (tiny baby excluded): If you dream of making something in this blender (be it smoothie, hummus, hot soup or frozen dessert) that will provide a single meal for 3 or more people, you’ll end up frustrated just enough times that it’s worth going for a different model.
Those who entertain large groups a lot: If you’re having people over and you want to – in one blend – make the whole party’s guacamole, hummus, salsa, cheese dip or anything else… you’ll end up disappointed enough times that it would have been better to just invest in a different model from the beginning.
What Can You Make With the Vitamix Explorian E310?
The things that are “missing” from the E310 (like presets on the more expensive models, the extra 0.2HP of the motor, and of course the bigger container) don’t prevent you from making anything with it. They only change how long, how easily, or how much you can make.
For example, every green smoothie is permissible. For my own morning smoothie, I drop frozen spinach, frozen broccoli, and frozen strawberries into my container all at the same time, and there’s never a problem. I don’t even need to use the pulse feature. If I get the speed to 10 within say 15 seconds, it’s blended to smooth within 30 seconds.
The same is true for all the things people want to make most with their Vitamix:
2HP is more than enough – and 48oz is more than enough – to pulverize all your nuts, seeds, and doughs.
This pizza will be no problem with the E310
This dude made peanut butter protein ice cream in his E310
View this post on Instagram
Here’s another dude making sweet corn soup:
About The Dry Goods Container
Here’s an important thing to know if you’re considering the E310:
While you can’t get a bigger container for the E310, you can get a 32oz dry goods container. That’s something worth doing if you’re planning on making a lot of bread, flours, and nut stuff.
NOTE: This is true for all Vitamix blenders. None of them come with a dry goods container standard. And none of the standard containers do exactly what the dry goods container does.
Actually it’s worth understanding this in a little more detail.
With the standard container (with the E310), you can still work with nuts. You can still grind nuts, make butters, doughs etc. But the dry goods container is better for it. Quite a bit better. And it opens up more options for what to do with the dough. For example you saw in the video above that you can knead/roll a dough for bread with the dry goods container by pulsing. You can’t do that with the standard container.
Ok, hopefully that makes enough sense.
Now let’s get to a couple of caveats.
Last: The E310 is (Slightly) Noisier
If you’re worried about the noise of your new Vitamix, here are a few words of wisdom:
First, no Vitamix is quiet. It’s a very powerful machine, and while they all come with noise-insulating features, you’re not exactly going to be meditating during a blend.
That said, the Explorian Series (E320 and E310) are a few decibels louder than models like the 5300, 750 and Ascent. How many decibels louder?
Sound testing indicates that the Explorian series is as much as 15dB louder than the latest models like a 2300 or 3500. Is 15dB a lot? Of course, it’s a matter of perception. For some people it will be a bother. Others won’t notice it.
The tradeoff with Vitamix is noise for price. Generally speaking, the more expensive models are quieter. But the noisier models help you save more money. Sometimes, like with the E310, a lot more money.
If you live in an apartment, or with roommates, or you blend a lot while your baby’s sleeping… You might want to spring the extra money for an Ascent. It’s not like that’s the only thing you get for the extra money anyway.
If you don’t tick any of those boxes… or you do and you still don’t care, go get those savings! An E310 is for you.
How Are the Reviews for the E310?
Whatever the model, reviews of Vitamix blenders trend very positive.
When a reviewer has mentioned something negative about the E310 it’s only been one thing: The “cheaper feeling” plastic dials and casing bits. This is a real thing. It’s part of how Vitamix can bring the price down so much on this model without affecting the performance. They didn’t change the motor base or the container functionality (ie the important parts) but they did change some materials on the casing, which is also the reason for the extra noise it creates.
Again, functionally speaking, this is meaningless. Your E310 will do the same job, with the same ingredients. But if you’re really into feel and you like high-end appliances, spring the extra $100 for an A2300 instead.
The positive reviews of the E310 were a lot of people – understandably – ecstatic about the price. They were people happy about the low height of it and the ease of fit under countertops. And last, they’re from people happy that they’ve been able to make everything you see in the commercials.
You can read more positive and negative reviews of the E310 here.
Comparing the Vitamix Explorian E310
If you’re still not sure whether it’s for you, these are the main factors that distinguish it from all the other popular Vitamix blenders.
Hopefully we’ve covered this but to be short: They’re the same machine, with different container sizes. E320 has the 64oz container where the E310 has the 48oz. For that bigger container, you’re gonna pay an extra $100. See above if you’re still not sure whether you need that bigger container.
5300 is a little quieter, has that extra 0.2HP, and has a 64oz container. It’s much more expensive BUT the reconditioned 5300 is very close in price. If you want a 64oz container that’s my recommended way to get one at a discount.
Vs 750 Pro
First, the 750 is a professional machine, intended for businesses, but used by a lot of home cooks. It’s a professional price too, typically costing $250 more than the E310. For that money you get a quieter blender, a slightly more powerful one, with a bigger container, and a tonne of presets. The 750 almost has an many extra features as the A3500 below.
You’ll notice a theme here… Comparing the E310 to any other Vitamix starts with saying the other one is more expensive. The 7500 is only around $160 more expensive, and that’s because it has the bigger motor, bigger container, and it’s got the features to make it quieter. If I can make a statement here without further justification: If you’re thinking of getting a model instead of the E310, don’t make it the 7500. Go with the Ascent 2300 or the reconditioned 5300 instead.
Now we’re comparing to the new Ascent range blenders so feature-wise, there’s a lot different. The Ascent blenders have the digital timers, touch screens, self detect containers that you can interchange. They’re also quieter and more powerful, and they have 64oz containers as standard. All that you’ll pay for, The A2300 is usually at least $120 more expensive.
This is comparing the lowest end Vitamix to one of the highest. The A3500 is another Ascent blender, but with even more features like pre-sets and wifi capability. It has everything the Ascent has, but is more expensive again. Now you’re talking almost $300 more expensive than the Vitamix Explorian E310.
How Does The Warranty Compare?
The final way in which the E310 is different to other Vitamixes is the warranty. The standard warranty is 5 years, instead of 7 or 10.
Is this something to worry about? No. Does it mean this Vitamix won’t last as long? No.
As we’ve noted above, some of the casing materials (not the motor materials or the container materials) are slightly less durable on the Explorian series, so someone in their finance department probably advised a reduction in warranty length for the sake of risk mitigation. Nothing more. Also again: Remember the savings!
Can You Buy Reconditioned?
Sadly you cannot buy a reconditioned Explorian blender, either E310 or E320.
But they’re already the cheapest Vitamix Blenders you can get. There’s no need to be thinking about reconditioned here.
Remember, this was our #1 Vitamix blender of the year for overall performance and value.
But should you really get a Vitamix E310? Here’s the final decision tree:
- a) Are you an individual or a couple?
- b) Are you ok with a little noise?
- c) Do you love bargains?
If you answered yes to those 3, grab a Vitamix E310 here and be happy.
- a) Are you a household of 3 or more?
- b) Do you have sensitive ears?
- c) Do you think “If I’m investing in a high-end blender anyway, I want ALL the features!”
If you answer yes to any of these 3, I think it’s worth picking a different Vitamix.
That’s it. I hope you’ve found my review helpful and if you have any other questions about an E310 or any other Vitamix, let me know in the comments below.