A hot plate sits below the pitcher, letting you cook soups and sauces as easily as you can blend a smoothie: Add ingredients and set the temperature, and the device sautés, simmers, and stirs. Schenker didn't think the blades puréed perfectly, but he loved the multifunctionality: "It cuts out stove-top heating. It even makes omelets!" [$150; cuisinart.com]