Which Should You Choose
There are two types of food mixer, there is the hand held version and the stand mixer, but which is the best food mixer. The hand held mixer is usually the first one people consider as it’s the cheapest option but its false economy in the long run as you have to hold the mixer in one hand and hold the mixing bowl that you will also have to buy separately with the other stopping you doing anything else in the kitchen until you are finished.
Hand held mixers usually come with less attachments than a stand mixer and are generally more messy to use as they usually don`t come with a splash guard. Research has shown that many people regret buying a hand held mixer and quickly upgrade to a stand mixer so you are likely better off spending that bit more and buying a stand mixer in the first place to avoid disappointment.
Buying a quality stand mixer also known as a kitchen machine or food mixer should reward you with many years’ service there are many reports of stand mixers being passed down from grandparent to daughter and then on to granddaughter lasting over 40 years. Just check out some of the reviews above.
A decent stand mixer is a must for food preparation and for any avid baker. It takes all the hard work out of baking, mixing batter, beating eggs, whipping cream, kneading dough etc using the various attachments that you should check come as standard with your new machine, leaving your hands free to get on with other tasks thus saving you time and energy as it can take over 10 minutes to whip an Italian meringue butter cream into shape.
As a bare minimum you will need a dough hook for kneading heavy bread dough effortlessly to perfection. A balloon whisk for whisking and whipping up deliciously smooth meringues, cake batter and egg whites in seconds and a beater tool for mixing delicious deserts and treats. Look out for a splash guard too, a useful addition to keep your ingredients in the bowl where they belong and not all over you and your work surface.
Another useful addition is a flexi beater blade. This has a flexible spatula edge on one side of a standard beater to allow it to scrape any food off the sides of the bowl while mixing ensuring a good smooth even mix with no lumps left on the sides of the bowl. Also check your future mixer has a decent size of bowl that will suit your needs. For example if you have a large family or enjoy baking lots of cakes and bread you ideally want a bowl big enough to mix it all in one go to save yourself time and effort.
Some stand mixers come with various food processor attachments and are not always more expensive than the standard mixer but may be worth the investment in the long run depending on your cooking needs.This will take your machine to a whole new dimension allowing you to slice or grate anything from vegetables, fruit to cheese and cooked meats in seconds. Impress your family and friends by making your own fresh burgers and sausages with a mincer attachment.
Some stand mixers can also be used as a blender/liquidizer allowing your blender to make smoothies, soups, baby food and even crushed ice and many other recipes, the world really is your oyster and some recipe books are written solely for the stand mixer. Just remember to check what attachments are available for your prospective purchase as some mixers have limited or no attachments on sale.
More Items To Consider
Stand mixers usually have a heavy die cast metal stand for stability and are much more powerful with many more speed setting and accessories than the hand held varieties. The bowl usually has a large capacity and some mixers can also make the bowl revolve as it mixes to ensure though mixing unlike a hand held mixer. Also some food mixers feature overload protection to protect your precious new mixer from overheating and damaging the motor.
Another important thing to consider is are all the washable removable parts able to go into your dishwasher. As a good quality mixer should give you many years of good service it is important that you take some time to choose the right one for your needs at the outset. What would you like it to do for you, will it be just baking for example or why not become more adventurous and buy one with the food processor attachments to add some flair to your recipes.
Another thing to consider is the location for your new food mixer. Some stand mixers are quite large so check there is enough worktop space for the new appliance. If there are wall units above will the mixer fit beneath them when it’s in its raised position, is there an electrical outlet nearby, if not is the length of the power cord sufficient to reach the outlet.
If you are planning to store the mixer in a cupboard because worktop space is at a premium check the dimensions to ensure it will fit in the cupboard, are there any shelves it needs to fit under. Another consideration is the weight, some mixers have a heavy metal base which is good for stability but not so good if you plan on storing it elsewhere as you will have to lift and carry it every time you want to use it.
Warranty & Spares
Another consideration is does the appliance come with any extended warranty in addition to the usual 12 months. Some mixers such as the KitchenAid below have several years extra warranty as part of the package which is good for peace of mind to protect your new investment. KithchenAid stand mixers have been setting the standard for decades with their stylish iconic designs.
With their die-cast metal stand for increased stability and durability, stainless steel bowl and a superb 58 designer color range with really cool names such as crystal blue and candy apple red you are sure to find the ideal color to match your kitchen, see just a few from the range below.
They also have a full range of accessories from juicers to peelers, grinders by far the largest selection of any other brand and readily available spare parts to ensure many years of service.
No good home baker would be without their trusty stand mixer. It can be used for a variety of applications such as bread and cake making, pastries, puddings and so much more depending on the accessories. Some models combine a food processor for slicing, dicing and mincing etc. and a juicer/liquidizer for soups and smoothies.
A stand mixer will save you time on preparation, allow you to multitask as you don`t have to hold anything, save on cleaning up and be able to make a wider range of foods. It will give you a more even mix and save you from exhaustion instead of mixing for long periods by hand.
You must consider what you intend to use the mixer for. Will you just be baking for your family or do you have lots of social gatherings, will you be making bread and desserts regularly. The more you food you intend to make the more bowl size and power will be important to you.
These are the 3 must have accessories you should check are included.
1) A Dough hook for kneading dough.
2) A balloon whisk for whipping up them delicious desserts.
3) A beater tool for beating eggs etc.
Best place to buy your stand mixer
Amazon has to be the best place to buy and compare different products, specifications and prices from the comfort of your own home without the hassle and hours of legwork required in the high street and malls.
You can read customer reviews to help with your buying decision and have it delivered to your door a few days later, or next day if you are an Amazon Prime member, even on Sundays. On the odd occasion you need to return something, that is usually free unlike ebay. There really is no better or easier way to shop.
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