Making dough is hard work when you do it by hand. All of the kneading can be a serious hand and arm workout. A good hand mixer will certainly make the job easier, but if you really want to free up some time (and your hands), you might want to consider a stand mixer. These devices take just about all of the manual work out of mixing dough. You’ll have to add the ingredients, and you might occasionally have to scrape the walls of the bowl, but for the most part, a stand mixer does all of the work for you. Below are some of our favorite models at every price range, from budget stand mixers in the $100 range to the higher-end models.
What’s your favorite color? Whatever it is, there’s a good chance that you can find it on a KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer. This appliance looks good in just about any kitchen, since it’s sure to match every aesthetic.
Of course, good looks aren’t the only thing going for this classic from KitchenAid. This stand mixer has a large 5-quart bowl, which is big enough to make four loaves of bread in a single batch, and a mixing system that makes sure all of the ingredients in your bowl get incorporated. The KitchenAid Artisan Series also features a unique power hub that allows you to connect multiple attachments.
While KitchenAid set the standard for stand mixer with its Artisan series, some people might find the 5-quart bowl a little too big. Luckily, you can now get this appliance in a “mini” 3.5-quart size instead.
If you’re looking for a basic, reliable stand mixer, look no further than this offering from Hamilton Beach. This appliance may not feature some of the bells and the whistles of the aforementioned KitchenAid (it only comes in a handful of colors and doesn’t work with “power hub” attachments), but if all you need is a stand mixer that, well, mixes, this appliance does the job admirably.
With a 4.5-quart bowl, a powerful 400-watt motor, and attachments to blend, beat, whip, mix, and cream your ingredients, the Hamilton Beach stand mixer should be more than enough for most home bakers.
The Cuisinart SM-55 is another stand mixer that is much more than a stand mixer. The top of this device lifts up to reveal three power ports, where you can mount everything from a meat grinder, to a citrus juicer, to a pasta maker (sold separately).
That’s great and all, but how well does it function as a stand mixer? The Cuisinart SM-55 features an 800-watt motor. For comparison’s sake, the KitchenAid Artisan is one of the most consistently well-reviewed stand mixers and that appliance only has a 325-watt mixer. While the SM-55 might give you a little more power than you’ll ever need, it’s comforting to know that this device will be able to tackle the heaviest tasks with ease.
One other unique feature of this device is the splash-free guard. While splash guards aren’t uncommon for stand mixers, this device’s splash guard covers the entire bowl, making it practically impossible for ingredients to escape.
While the main purpose of a stand mixer is to remove the manual labor from mixing dough and batters, many bakers find themselves manually scraping the mixture from the edges of the bowl in order to incorporate all of the ingredients. The Breville’s “scraper beater” eliminates this annoying aspect of baking. With a flexible rubber edge, this beater continuously scrapes the walls of the 5-quart stainless steel bowl, so you don’t have to.
This stand mixer also has a couple of cool digital features, such as an LED display and a countdown timer. With its powerful motor and 12-speed mixing action, this stand mixer can handle just about any task.
Most stand mixers cost $200 or more. For some people, that might just be too much to spend on an appliance that will only get used a few times a year. If that describes you, check out the Sunbeam Mixmaster.
This appliance isn’t as sleek as the competition, and it doesn’t come with any power hubs for multiple attachments. But it’s one of the best stand mixers available for around $100. It has a decent motor, comes with two glass bowls (the largest of which is only 4 quarts), has 12 speed settings, and includes chrome beaters, whisks, and dough hooks. This stand mixer may not be the best option if you’re looking to make large batches of bread multiple times of week, but for the occasional birthday cake or batch of cookies, this sub-$100 stand mixer is a great choice.
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