How-To & Diy

How to Juice Without a Juicer

January 20, 2017

Whether you want to juice for the health benefits, or you just like to start your day with freshly-squeezed citrus, you don’t have to own a juicer to make it happen.

How to Make Juice Without a Juicer, from Food52

Maybe you've thought about getting a juicer, but aren’t sure whether the clean-up and loss of kitchen space will be worth it. So before you commit, learn how to juice with supplies already in your kitchen with this oldie-but-goodie post.

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You’ll need a blender, a spatula, a fine mesh strainer, and a bowl—preferably one that your strainer sits nicely on top of. Next you need to decide what you want to juice. Take note: This is not the time to perfect a parsnip, carrot, and ginger blend. Your blender isn’t going to be up to the challenge. If you don’t want to wing it, start with a juice recipe designed to work in a blender, or follow our lead with a beet and citrus blend. Don’t be afraid to play around with your blends though; we’ve got quick fixes if your mix gets stuck. 

How to Make Juice Without a Juicer

Wash your ingredients well, and cut them into large chunks. For citrus, cut the peel and pith away first, but there's no need to dig to extract the seeds. Items like beets, carrots, and ginger just need a good scrub—there's no need to peel, just lop off the tops and particularly hairy-looking bottoms. In fact, there’s no need to peel most ingredients, unless you are concerned about non-organic produce, or you just want to. (There are exceptions. Please peel your pineapple.)

More: Get the most out of any citrus with this appliance-free juicing method.

How to Make Juice Without a Juicer, from Food52How to Make Juice Without a Juicer, from Food52How to Make Juice Without a Juicer, from Food52

Place your chopped produce in the blender, and yes, order matters. Put juicier items at the bottom (like citrus, pears, tomatoes, or cucumbers) before putting in greens and sturdier items.

Now, blend! It's okay if your blender needs some cajoling. Sometimes, a quick stir (while the blender is off!) is all it takes to get things moving again. Other times you’ll need to add more liquid to get it blending: a splash of water, juice, or another piece or two of really juicy produce. Pep talks help too. 

How to Make Juice Without a Juicer, from Food52

Once everything is blended, pour your the mixture into the mesh strainer (which is set over a bowl), press it with a spatula to extract the juice, and let it sit for a few minutes to encourage a bit more to drip out. At that point, you can pour it in a glass, or go back for a final aggressive press with the spatula—unless you’re anti-pulp in your juice.

How to Make Juice Without a Juicer, from Food52

Now it’s time to clean your mesh strainer. Yes, right now. Before all of pulpy pieces get stuck on and impossible to remove. Scrape out the pulp, and either add it to your compost bin, or reserve it for another use (depending on your blend, the pulp can be used for stock, vegetable patties, breads, or mixed with cream cheese for a spread). Running water over the stainer in the opposite direction that you poured the juice in will help to remove the little bits. In dire cases, use a stiff-bristled brush.

How to Make Juice Without a Juicer, from Food52

Return to your juice and enjoy. Our citrus-beet blend is great straight-up or cut with sparkling water—but it’s really meant to live in a margarita. Does that defeat the health benefits of juicing? We hope not. (And if you don’t have a blender or a juicer, all is not lost. The creators of the Mason Jar Shaker prove you can even juice with a muddler.)

Tell us: What’s your favorite juice blend?

This article originally ran almost 3 years (!) ago. We're re-running it now because is it just us, or does everyone seem to be juicing right now?

Photos by James Ransom

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Danielle Wordelman
    Danielle Wordelman
  • elise
  • josefernandez
  • Ronald Dale Ruffner
    Ronald Dale Ruffner
  • carl
I like esoteric facts about vegetables. Author of the IACP Award-nominated cookbook, Cooking with Scraps.


Danielle W. January 23, 2017
ughhh straining it seems so wasteful!!!!!!!! just drink the pulp!
elise August 13, 2016
Very nice article, thanks a lot for sharing!!
I´ve been juicing for a while now and I gave up my juicer (centrifugal juicer) simply because the blades of those machines are so powerful that they heat the fruit or veggie you are juicing and so kill the enzymes and nutrients you were suppose to get!!
I think that the best way to juice is by using a cold press, but they are so expensive that not everyone can afford it! So I came up with a method that act like the cold press but way cheapper... I use a grater and a piece of fabric or a nutmilk bag, it will take a few more minutes to make a juice, but you know that what you´ll be drinking is the good stuff!!!
Watch me make a juice without a juicer here:
One love ;)
josefernandez August 5, 2016
Is this kitchenaid blender heavy enough to juice I only have this one at home and don't want to invest in a juicer.
Ronald D. March 26, 2014
Does anyone know if using frozen fruits will work through the blender and will I get the same nutrition from fresh frozen berries? Where we live all fresh berries are very expensive as they are shipped in from Australia
I_Fortuna March 26, 2014
We use frozen often and until mangoes are back in season. Unless you grow your own, some nutrition is lost in shipping fresh or prepping some fruit for the freezing process. My bet is on frozen as it is frozen very soon after picking at its peak and does not experience the possible extreme temperatures that fresh fruit and veggies must endure.
Here is an article you may be interested in. It seems to express the concensus.
Ronald D. March 28, 2014
I Fortuna,
Thanks for the article it came in really handy. It's great to know because many of the good fruit in Malaysia has to be flown in from Australia or New Zealand and is of great quality and relatively in expensive vs. fresh fruits shipped in or even those grown in the central part of the country. Thanks so much!
I_Fortuna March 28, 2014
You are welcome, I hope you enjoy the fruit juices and smoothies you can make with them too. : )
carl March 25, 2014
Great info! I use a blender to juice but instead of a strainer I use paint straining bag, the large 5 gallon size, a few dollars at Home Depot or Lowes. you put the bag in a large bowl and in side the sink, pour in the blened veggies and fruit and close the bag and twist down the mixture and then milk the bag and the juice collects in the bowl. you can get ALL the juice this way and the fiber is so dry it stays in a ball. Add a little back to get fiber or just drink the juice. I have add up to 10 different things and you can distincting taste almost even one. Scan youtube for juicing using a home blender.
jstew52 January 21, 2017
Yes, I've done it this way too. Paint strainer bags work great and are cheap. You can get a ton of juice this way, more than from even a dedicated juicer. More work, but more effective.
Ronald March 18, 2014
Thanks for the non-juicer juicing... can't wait, but my problem is I'm a diabetic and am not to have too much sugar, especially watermelon, mango, etc... My question is do you have a nice semi sweet juice blend that doesn't include caves liver or beets? I don't mind suplementing a few non sweet vegies, but I really miss my coke-a-cola and I'm finding it really tough to not think about my soda drinks. I used to love smoothies, but again the fruit is a big no-no. I'm sure many of your fans would love to hear of a carbonated drink that all diabetics could drink without guilt or comma...Thanks again
I_Fortuna March 18, 2014
We are also diabetic (T2) and we use mostly berries and don't strain, we need the fiber because it is cruicial to lowering cholesterol. We do use mango in season with no problems but everyone is different. I think if you check the ADA (American Diabetes Association) you will find that many fruits are o.k. for diabetics especially blackberries, boysenberries, strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. These contain very little sugar and we use only a cup and a half of berries for both smoothies. If you don't like the seeds, stick with blueberries. We use a sugarless sweetener and you can use plain kefir or yogurt. Kefir is more tart but contains about 3 times the probiotics as yogurt but Fage is a great probiotic yogurt. Check with your doctor to determine if you need to supplement vitamins. I add C, D, and potassium especially.
Kefir and yogurt made at home are the best because the longer it cultures the less lactose (sugar) is present and is does fizz a little but not like soda. Kefir is the easiest to make and only requires culturing at room temp (semi-warm) for 24 to 36 hours. I culture ours for about 36 hours to deplete as much lactose as possible. Many of the store bought brands are fine too and I believe some use stevia (non-sugar) as a sweetner.
Try checking out
Donna has a lot of free info and sells live kefir cultures that I believe are very dependable.
I know how frustrating this can be and it took a lot of research to find things we could have. I hope this helps. Let me now if you have questions. Best of luck. : )
Ronald March 18, 2014
Thank you, thank you, thank you so much for your speedy and informative reply. (hurrah! I can drink fruit juices!) Seriously thank you for sharing your hard work with us, at 62 it is a life changing even you studies with us. Learning that I have Diabetes I have had to cut all sweet and starch from my diet. Fortunately I am able to take medication (not insulin shots) start to exercise and watch my diet I should be able to maintain my sugar blood levels. It's just that I didn't know what else to drink, and saw that most store juices had more sugar than many soda drinks.
You have really done a great service and for me and anyone who reads this, I (we) will appreciate all your hard work and for sharing it with us. Thanks again.
I_Fortuna March 18, 2014
Your very welcome. Since everyone is different, I hope you will try a little at a time to see how your blood sugar does. These have worked well for us. ADA also has a lot of recipes that will make this transition much easier. I am 63 and have had T2 for 3 years so I kinda know what you are going through. I am glad to help. : )
EllieinArecibo March 17, 2014
If you have a blender that is powerful enough to produce a final product that is drinkable without straining, what is the reason for straining? Isn't there any awful lot of good nutrition, especially fiber, in the pulp that you're taking out of your juice here? I honestly am curious as to why people would do this. Is it just because they prefer a thinner juice instead of a thicker "smoothie?"
I_Fortuna March 17, 2014
Our smoothies are not strained but they do come out drinkable with a straw. They contain all the fiber. You can blend your ingredients to a frozen puree state and drink them that way. Some fruits and veggies may need a juicer or strainer however because the pulp may be too gritty or coarse to be drinkable. We use berries, mangoes, peaches, papaya and oranges mostly. The pulp can also be used in soups, stews, baking and okara patties.
Beet pulp is wonderful to use in bread making to get that beautiful magenta color and fiber.
Most veggies need to be soaked or cooked to rid them of phytic acid. Beans should be soaked to the sprouting stage and then cooked. Phytic acid in veggies blocks absorption of vital nutrients so raw is often not as beneficial as we need.
I_Fortuna March 16, 2014
I have a Ninja and it emulsifies and crushes ice beautifully and it was only $40 or so. I got the one with the little motor on top. I can break this down and clean the blades separately from blender container. It came with a large container and a small one. They both have doubles blades. I like being able to take the blades out so I don't keep nicking my fingers to clean the container and it takes up less room. So easy and this is one powerful machine. We have had only a few small seeds from blackberries is all. I have had mine for over 5 years and we use it nearly every day, I love it. I make smoothies, soy or nut milks with it and puree soups.
Donna C. March 16, 2014
I have used the pulp form juicing in baked goods like muffins and quick breads
Great idea!
Zim March 11, 2014
best "juice" blend ever? A cup of OJ, a banana, and a handful for frozen straw, blue, black, and raspberries. Blend away. If you are feeling indulgent, add some whipped cream on top.
i've just started using the nutribullet to juice and use this exact method with the strainer. we only compost in warmer weather, so i would love to get some recipes or suggestions for the "leftovers" THANKS!
I_Fortuna March 17, 2014
You can use the pulp in baking, stews, soups and it is delcious for making okara patties. Okara is the pulp left over specifically from making soy milk but it can be any pulp, from nuts or other beans. Mix your veggie pulp with pureed chickpeas (or hummus) add a little flour, seasoning, a little coconut oil to make a dough and fry little patties. They are terrific!
gbatrucks March 11, 2014
We have a Vita-Mix super blender that emulsifies, so there is no need to throw out the pulp. I buy a bunch of spinach & keep it in a freezer bag. Our basic smoothie consists of a handful of spinach, a couple of carrots, and a couple of cored apples. Throw in about a 1/3 cup flax seed, maybe some masala for flavor. After that it’s whatever fruit is in season here in central Mexico…papaya, mango, berries, pineapple, usually a banana goes in too. Add water in and turn on hi. This will make 2 liters that we drink every morning. If using raspberries, you should blend them first to break down the seeds. This will probably not work in a standard blender. It really takes a powerful machine. They are not cheap, but in 10 years it has proven to be well worth the investment.