When mixing batters or kneading bread dough, electric mixers can save you a lot of time. In that regard, hand mixers are a decent option, but there’s a good chance you’d end up with a tired hand and arm from holding it too long. That’s where stand mixers come in, as they can keep on churning and moving your mixture while you tend to other tasks in the kitchen.
To no one’s surprise, consumers are spoiled for choice when getting a stand mixer, as it’s been around for decades already. By the same token, it can get a bit hard to choose one with so many models out there. To help you pick one out, we’ve handpicked a few that stand out from the pack in features and performance: the Cuisinart Precision Master, the Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Stand Mixer, the SMEG Retro Style Stand Mixer and the KitchenAid Artisan Series.
- Best Stand Mixer Comparison Chart
- Best Stand Mixer for Bread Dough — Cuisinart Precision Master 5.5-Quart Stand Mixer
- Best Affordable Stand Mixer — Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Stand Mixer
- Best Stand Mixer for Baking — SMEG Retro Style Stand Mixer
- Best KitchenAid Stand Mixer — KitchenAid Artisan Series 5-Quart Tilt-Head Stand Mixer
Best Stand Mixer Comparison Chart
|Model||Cuisinart Precision Master 5.5-Quart Stand Mixer||Hamilton Beach 6 Speed Stand Mixer||SMEG Retro Style Stand Mixer||KitchenAid Artisan Series 5-Quart Tilt-Head Stand Mixer|
|Price||Check Price at Cuisinart.com||Check Price at HamiltonBeach.com||Check Price at SMEG.com||Check Price at KitchenAid.com|
|Bowl Capacity||5.5 quarts||3.5 quarts||5 quarts||5 quarts|
|Included Attachments||Whisk, dough hook, flat mixing paddle, splash guard with pouring spout||Whisk, dough hook, flat beater||Whisk, dough hook, flat beater, pouring shield||Whisk, dough hook, flat beater, pouring shield|
Best Stand Mixer for Bread Dough — Cuisinart Precision Master 5.5-Quart Stand Mixer
Put simply, the Cuisinart Precision Master gets it right across the board, from capacity to power.
There’s a lot to love about the Cuisinart Precision Master. First off, it has a large 5.5-quart bowl complete with a handle, and it includes a splash guard with a pouring spout. From a design standpoint, it’s a beaut too, coming in a wide variety of colors such as Onyx and Silver Lining. In fact, there are too many to list without ending up with a wall of text. Also, it has a durable and sleek metal construction to match.
It features a tilt-back head with a 500W motor under the hood, providing plenty of power to handle even the thickest of doughs and batters. On top of that, it has 12 speed settings, offering granular control over the mixing process.
Needless to say, it comes with a dough hook out of the box, along with a flat mixing paddle and a chef’s whisk. These are all dishwasher-safe, including the bowl itself.
Considering its sticker price, it may be a bit excessive for bread dough, but it pays for itself, which is as opposed to buying bread all the time. Besides, its capabilities are far from limited, as it’s perfect for cakes and cookies too. Moreover, its repertoire expands with separately sold attachments, such as a pasta extruder, meat grinder and spiralizer, to name a few.
- 12 speed settings
- Metal build
- Doesn’t reach the bottom of the bowl when preparing small mixtures
Best Affordable Stand Mixer — Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Stand Mixer
The Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Stand Mixer lets you mix and knead without breaking the bank.
Usually, a low price point means you’ll have to settle for an underperforming model, but despite its relatively lower cost, the Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Stand Mixer delivers results. Essentially, it punches above its weight.
It has a tilt-up head, and as its name suggests, it operates in six speed settings that’s adjustable via a knob, packing 300W of power. It goes without saying that it’s not the most powerful out there, but it can get the job done. By that, we mean that it’s capable of making smooth and evenly mixed dough, and it’s even touted as having the same mixing action as KitchenAid stand mixers (i.e. rotates with full bowl coverage).
It’s worth pointing out that its stainless steel bowl is only 3.5 quarts and lacks a handle. Also, it doesn’t have a splash guard, but in its defense, it does feature a folding option aside from the aforementioned speed settings. This comes in handy as a way to slowly start mixing without the ingredients splattering out of the bowl or to gently mix in delicate ingredients. It includes a flat beater, whisk and dough hook, and its compact size makes it a breeze to find a spot on the kitchen counter.
All that said, there’s no way around its budget nature, as it tends to have a bit of a difficult time mixing particularly thick doughs. However, it’s still a decent pick for beginner bakers or home cooks who won’t have to use it often.
- Decent price-to-performance ratio
- Small capacity
- Has trouble mixing certain doughs at times
Best Stand Mixer for Baking — SMEG Retro Style Stand Mixer
Powerful performance and a blast from the past, the SMEG Retro Style Stand Mixer has it all.
More than just aesthetically pleasing with its old-school look and glossy finish, the SMEG Retro Style Stand Mixer packs a lot of power for bakers, owing to its 600W motor. Made with die-cast aluminum, it has a reliable build quality that’ll last for years.
It’s a tilt-head model with a comprehensive set of attachments that includes a wire whisk, flat beater, dough hook and pouring shield. Also, it can go beyond the usual bread and cake doughs with optional accessories such as an ice cream maker bowl, as well as a pasta maker, ravioli maker and multi-food grinder, which are usable via its frontal port. Offering ten speeds with a smooth-start function and a five-quart stainless steel bowl, it can handle just about anything you throw at it.
Now it’s on the heavy side, but that’s both a good thing and a bad thing. On one hand, it doesn’t move around the counter while mixing or kneading even at high speeds. On the other hand, it’s a bit cumbersome to stow away or place elsewhere.
- Standout design
- Powerful 600W motor
- Expensive compared to similar stand mixers
Best KitchenAid Stand Mixer — KitchenAid Artisan Series 5-Quart Tilt-Head Stand Mixer
Arguably, the KitchenAid Artisan Series is the most popular stand mixer, and for good reason too.
Most folks would say that the KitchenAid Artisan Series is the best tilt-head stand mixer out there, and you’d likely be hard-pressed to prove them wrong. In short, it’s generally considered as the mack daddy of its ilk. After all, it strikes the perfect balance between power, capacity and features.
On that note, it has 10 speed settings backed by a 325-watt motor, thoroughly rotating around its five-quart stainless bowl for an even mix. While that may seem underwhelming compared to other powerhouses with a huge motor, it’s hard to argue with results. It can handle thick doughs and ensure they’re silky smooth, and it makes a light and rich whipped cream.
It includes a coated flat beater, dough hook and six-wire whip, as well as a pouring shield. Also, there are more than 10 optional attachments available, including a spiralizer, pasta maker, ice cream maker, juicer and grater. Another advantage to being part of a well-known brand is it’s compatible with a ton of third-party accessories in the market. In other words, the possibilities are pretty much endless.
If there’s anything to complain about, it’s that it will cost a pretty penny.
- Numerous attachments, including third-party options
- Even mixing
- Among the most expensive stand mixers
The Cuisinart Precision Master, KitchenAid Artisan Series, Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Stand Mixer and SMEG Retro Style Stand Mixer can do the trick, whether it be for baking and making cookie doughs or other dishes such as pasta and vegetable noodles.
To sum things up, we’ve boiled down our recommendations to the Cuisinart Precision Master for its build quality and reliability and the KitchenAid Artisan Series for its versatility and performance. Then there’s the Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Stand Mixer that’s arguably the best budget stand mixer, as well as the SMEG Retro Style Stand Mixer with a 600W motor and nostalgic design.
The KitchenAid Artisan Series is generally regarded as the stand mixer to beat for its numerous attachments and performance. It may not be the most powerful model, but it can evenly mix doughs and make rich whipped cream.
The Cuisinart Precision Master is hard to go wrong with in reliability and performance, providing a large-capacity bowl with plenty of attachments. It’s also more affordable than the widely popular KitchenAid Artisan Series.
The Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Stand Mixer is one of the cheapest models available, and despite its low cost, it comes with a respectable 300W motor and a tilt-up design. Also, it has a fold setting, which can basically be used as a soft-start function.
It’s recommended to get a stand mixer with at least 250W to handle most doughs and batters. However, to make sure it has plenty of power to spare, your best bet is to go with at least 500W, like the 600W SMEG Retro Style Stand Mixer.