The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Best Stand Mixer for Bread, not KA

judiandjeff's picture
judiandjeff

Best Stand Mixer for Bread, not KA

About to replace my KA 5 qt. Want the best, but Hobart too expensive. Need advice among Bosch, Electrolux (are they still made?), Viking, and any other I missed. I assume these are in the $600 range or so, a little more is ok.

I searched here, and other sites online, and no one seems to be willing to say which they think is the best.

Thanks

AnnieT's picture
AnnieT

judiandjeff, I chose the Bosch mainly because of the lower price, and I am very happy with it. I use it for large batches of "discard" bread I bake to share with neighbors - it doesn't do well with small amounts like my sourdough which I make by hand. When you read "plastic bowl" don't expect something flimsy. it is a sturdy workhorse and I still maintain it is very easy to clean, A.

cady's picture
cady

We have always had a Bosch.  I have really enjoyed it.  It does walk around when it has a large batch.  However, you can make 5 - 6 loaves of regular bread.  I can make 1-1/2 batch of the bagels from BBA. It keeps going.  It is great for bread.  However, with a plastic bowl, there are many things you can not do.  A stainless bowl is available.

Ours was very durable.  I purchased the first one for my sweet wife over 30 years ago. We had 5 children and my wife made all the bread.  The first one lasted nearly 20 years. Likely would have last much longer if it had not been used to mix concreet.  One day my daughter decided to make cookies.  We keep flour in white 5 gallon buckets.  She ran out of flour and went into the garage and found another bucket.  She started mixing the cookies.  My wife noticed the mixer was making a strange noise.  The bucket was not flour.  It was properly labeled "builders lime".  (I use lime to turn dried corn into hominy for a mexican soup - pozole).  The mixer made a grinding noise for a while and then - it died. 

 

bobkay1022's picture
bobkay1022

Hello

   Not having a lot of mixers and not much knowledge I bought a KA Pro.  Lasted nine months and was ok except it was making what I thought a little more noise under a 6 cup load. I called Customer care. They asked to listen to it on the phone.  Sent me a new one and another year warraty at no cost either way. Now thats a company I want to support .

Mr.Bob

busy lizzy's picture
busy lizzy

I have a new Bosch about 6 months old paid around $400.00. Just mixed 7 one pound loafs in it and it did NOT walk across my counter.  My KA is over 30 thirty years old love it for every thing but mixing bread. There is no way that machice could handle the dough that the Bosch does.

flourgirl51's picture
flourgirl51

The Bosch Universal Plus is a real workhorse. I give it a  real workout when I am making whole grain breads for my market. It can handle up to 15 lbs of dough at a time. I do many large batches of dough in a day and it has never failed to do a great job.  It also whips as little as one egg white very efficiently. I also have a KA Pro 6 but found that it gets hot when I use it for just a single batch of two two pound loaves of wheat bread.

I have them for sale on my website plus I add a free gift with a purchase. I will send you a message with this info in case you want to check it out.

Nim's picture
Nim

Hi flourgirl: Can I get the Bosch in 220V on your website? Can you send me the link to your website? Thanks. Nim.

 

boilerbaker's picture
boilerbaker

When I experiended having a Kitchen Aid mixer fail, I tried the Bosch Compact, small Bosch mixer.  I was so pleased with it that I then invested in the large Bosch mixer.  I do not have a problem with my large Bosch walking when making big batches of dough.  I have the juicer attachment for both models, as well as the meat grinder and berry attachment and the ice cream makers for  both.  I'm not sure I really recommend the ice cream maker for the Compact--it works, but buying an electric ice cream maker might be more efficient.  I have both the plastic bowl and stainless bowl for the large Bosch.  I use the stainless one when I make chiffon cakes and angel food cakes, because I had heard it was better for betting egg whites.  In any case, I wanted 2 bowls when making cakes that required beating the eggs separately.  The bowls next together, so the extra bowl doesn't take up extra space.

jj1109's picture
jj1109

The only reason stainless steel is recommended for egg whites is it's easier to clean all the fat off a stainless steel bowl that would interfere with the beating of the egg whites. I use a plastic bowl on my kenwood and have never had a problem, you just have to be sure it's clean.

dablues's picture
dablues

I've had 2 KA, and just bought a Viking 7 QT mixer.  It just came today, so I can't really advise as to it's use, but I can tell the construction of the machine is super.  Motor has 1000 watts. 

Andrew S's picture
Andrew S

I have a Kenwood chef ( well 2) for years and I just love them.  Kitchen aids are so very popular because of heavy product placement on TV, they look pretty, lots of nice colours etc.  They are very good, dont get me wrong, I like them a lot.  For me though, Kenwood wins due to the 3 basic attachments worikng better, esp the hook, spares are everywhere, there is a massive range of accessories that all work well.  It has a bombproof motor that can be serviced easily. I love it! All this coming from an ex professional baker as well.

If any mixer likes to go walkies, put a damp cloth under it or put it in a corner and let it try to walk into the walll

judiandjeff's picture
judiandjeff

Is Kenwood sold in the United States? Can't find it anywhere>

Andrew S's picture
Andrew S

Kenwood mixers should be available in the US.  They are all over ebay.  Full machines, attachments (lots) spare parts etc.  My last search came up with over 600 listings.  If anyone does their homework and fancies one, I can get a basic machine, used and working with the 3 basic attachments for around £50.  New ones go for around £150, right up to £800.  The top one is a cook mixer though, built in induction element under bowl.  Hot meringues, maintain temperature for fermentation in a colder room, emulsified sauces etc. Also has digital, programmable time and temperature controls.  Wish I could afford one.

Any queries, please get in touch.  Do some research on the vast range of attachments available. I am after a wheat mill attachment for making coarse meal additions to my doughs.

Hope this has helped.

Andrew S.

qahtan's picture
qahtan

I mill all my whole wheat in the wheat mill that fits my Kenwood, and it does a great job, also mill several other things......

 My Kenwood mixer one about 40 years old,one aabout 30 years old both working fine but I really only use Kenwood for the attachments or cake making.

For what I call heavy duty I use Electrolux DLX, now thats a heavy duty workhorse. love it.

Also have KA,

                       qahtan

Andrew S's picture
Andrew S

I am interested in the Electrolux DLX.  Not come across it in the UK.

 

Links,  Pictures,  Details,   All would be much apprecieated.

 

Andrew S

Yumarama's picture
Yumarama

Here's a link to the English version of the Danish home website.

http://www.assistent.nu/website2/1.0.2.0/21/2/

It may go by another name in your area; Assitent or Assistant, DLX, Magic Mill are all basically the same thing, it depends what name they chose to market where you are. So just hunt up "Electrolux mixer" and you should run across it.

toyman's picture
toyman

I've had my Electrolux for about a year.  It's a solid and quiet machine. It doesn't miss a beat with whole wheat bread and it's very simple to use.  When I was researching, my choices came down to the electrolux and the bosch.  I went with the electrolux for the following reasons:  1 - Quieter, 2 - doesn't walk  3 - slower slow speed than the Bosch, 4 - Larger capacity, 5 - Stainless bowl.  This type of mixer is nice for bread since it doesn't have the motor on top which makes it easier to add ingredients while the mixer is working. 

flourgirl51's picture
flourgirl51

The Bosch has a 6 1/2 quart bowl. The motor is not in the top either, it doesn't walk,has a three year motor/transmission warranty, stainless bowl option and more. I would be happy to send anyone that messages me a brochure so you can see all that it has to offer.

merlie's picture
merlie

I have nearly decided to buy the new Breville Stand Mixer. ( www.breville.com) I love the look of it - beautiful design - and it has a 550w motor. I say I've "nearly" decided because I've just found out that in Australia it has a 1000w motor . Here in Canada William Sonoma carry the 550w model but so far not the 1000w one. 550w sounds great - my KA is only 300w. Any advise or comments welcome - Merlie

joyfulbaker's picture
joyfulbaker

I'm still using my 8-year-old KitchenAid Pro. 6.  It does fine with bread dough, but with some caveats.  I have learned--the expensive way--not to push it too high, that is, not to go over speed 2--which is IN THE MANUAL!  I tend to bake sourdoughs with at least 60% bread flour (unbleached "white") plus some whole wheat or "high extraction", and some rye.  Total amount of flour mixed into the levain is usually around 20 oz. (I think that's about 4 or 4 1/2 cups)--plus 12 oz. water, plus the levain, which is 5 oz. bread flour plus 5 oz. water plus 2 oz starter--at any rate, I end up with two approx. 1.5-lb loaves.  Sometimes I've even gone up 25% in amounts, and it seems to do fine.  I don't mix too long, maybe 6-8 minutes, and then a little hand kneading (good to get the "feel" of the dough), and I do a stretch & fold 2 or 3 times.  The moral of my story is not to overload the mixer.  If you want a very tough mixer, I've heard the Electrolux is a real workhorse, but I've never seen it used.

Good luck!--Joyful

ronhol's picture
ronhol

I'm embarrassed to admit, I got one of these, complete with most all attachments, some years back, and I only used it 2-3 times.

I thought I was going to begin baking bread, and was sold on the durability of the DLX over a KA, but never got to baking bread, so never used it.

I was also a little intimidated by the unique design.

I now have a KA, which I use some, but I started baking via ABI5, no knead, so neither machine get's a workout yet.

I flirted with selling the DLX, but decided to keep the beautiful black chrome machine, as I will probably start using it now that I'm cooking and baking more than ever before.

I am however getting some excellent results from my no knead baking.

I'm also enjoying this topic, thanks to all for posting.

tmarz's picture
tmarz

I have a kitchen aid and it works great! Just make sure you get one with the metal gears (the older ones have plasitc/nylon gears)... Just get the number and call kitchen aid, they will tell you if it has metal gears or not. The newer older model does, the brand new ones do for sure with certain models, its like the 5 plus, the professional 600... I can't remember them all but you can call and ask them.

rhomp2002's picture
rhomp2002

walking bit.   The new Bosch has suction cups on the bottom so that it no longer walks at all.  I have mixed 15 lb of whole wheat dough in mine and it did no walking at all - and that was on a slippery counter.  Maybe the older Bosch mixers walked but the new ones do not.

I have both a Bosch Universal Plus and a Bosch Compact and neither one walks.

 

ronhol's picture
ronhol

I was in Wal Mart the other day and noticed a BH&G stand mixer.

Don't know anything about them, but never saw one before.

 

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Better-Homes-and-Gardens-4.5-Qt.-Stand-Mixer-Stainless-Steel/14977058

Dave323's picture
Dave323

For what it's worth ... I have had an Electrolux DLX for a few months now and I am quite happy with it. As far as capacity, just the other day I mixed up 2 batches of bread. One was 6 pounds of 100% whole wheat bread. The other was ... wait for it ... 14 pounds of a rustic Italian bread which was 25% semolina/25%AP/25%bread flour/25% whole wheat. Yikes! The Electrolux DLX didn’t even blink. No walking around the counter like my KA used to do. No smoking, no spitting oil, no grunting and groaning. No tossing flour onto every surface in sight. Just nicely kneaded dough.

The controls are simple and pretty intuitive. Some people say there is a learning curve to the Electrolux DLX. I actually think it is more of a faith curve. It doesn’t LOOK like it will work. Electrolux DLX is not a violent process, like a planetary mixer. But, lo and behold, it DOES work, and the dough comes out very nice.

I bake the bread and my wife bakes the sweets. She does not care for the Electrolux DLX, because she says it is overkill for small batches. I think she is just thrown off by the unconventional ways of the Electrolux DLX - the bowl rotates, and the beater stands still. But, hey who am I to question the wisdom of She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed? This way I don’t have to share my toy  :)

 

 

loydb's picture
loydb

I've had a DLX for a couple of years now. It is a fantastic mixer, and solidly outperforms my old KA (which I still use for grinding meat, making whipped cream, and other non-bread tasks) when it comes to bread. I've never once had the feeling that the DLX was struggling, no matter how much dough I have it working. There wasn't much of a learning curve on it -- my main 'aha' moment was when I began adding the liquid to the bowl first -- it seems to work better that way.

 

hanseata's picture
hanseata

Since my beloved 7-quart Cuisinart - after a fall to the tiled floor 2 years ago - was moaning, groaning and ominously moving in a way that I expected it to bite the flour dust any time soon, I decided after long consideration to buy a Bosch Universal Plus.

I was very pleased with my purchase (sturdy, suction cups) until I mixed my first (regular) batch of very hydrated dough for Pain a l'Ancienne. It crawled right away up over the kneading hook, and I had to take everything apart (not difficult, but tedious) to clean it, before I mixed my second batch, a bit sticky rye/wheat (for S & F later). This amount was for 4 breads, and crawled over and into the dough hook, too (mixed it otherwise fine). The only dough that made no difficulties was the rather dry pita dough.

I found it annoyingly time consuming to empty the bowl - the middle console for the dough hook makes it rather difficult to scrape especially wetter doughs out. Since I'm preparing stickier doughs every week, spending a lot of time cleaning every part after each batch is just not doable for me.

I had to take the Bosch back, and exchanged it for another 7-quart Cuisinart. It's easy to clean, no crawling up of more hydrated dough (dough hook has a collar, too), and, a very useful feature, an inbuilt timer and auto switch off.

Karin

 

Franko's picture
Franko

Hi Karin,

I've had a bit of that dough climb with my Bosch Compact as well. I've found that if I scrape it down after the first 2-3 minutes, or once some development has occurred, it picks it up well and no more climb. In your situation of making large or larger batches, the KA is likely the better choice. One of the things I really like about the Bosch Compact, aside from it's slow speed mixing action, is how easy it is to clean, and to keep clean. From what you describe, the Universal sounds like a royal pain, and I was under the impression the two machines were fairly similar other than respective capacity. I guess my biggest gripe with the Compact is that the mixing arm won't lift clear of the bowl without having to detach the bowl during the process. Surprisingly poor design from Bosch, but it may have been necessary to keep the overall unit 'compact' .

Franko

bigcrusty's picture
bigcrusty

I have an Assistent from Electrolux and it has more than met my needs.  I do a lot of heavy dough and multiple loaves and it performs well.  I bought it through Pleasant Hill Grains about a year ago and was pleased with their service.

It was as you indicated in your estimate about $600.

Regards,

Kevin McAdam

geggers's picture
geggers

I'm so glad that this topic has finally come up, as the bread dough/mixer dilemma has been an issue for me as well. I used to have a 5 qt Kitchen-Aid that lasted 8 years with much dough abuse, though the bowl was way too small and crawled up to the head, which I was forever trying to clean out of the springs. When it finally bit the dust (after attempting another batch of too stiff bagel dough), I was given the 6 qt PROFESSIONAL model as a gift. It promptly bit the dust on my first batch of bagels. The replacement didn't work at all, the beater was a good 1/2 from the bottom of the bowl and couldn't be adjusted. I sent that back and the third one broke after making chocolate chip cookies! I asked Kitchen-Aid what was up with their quality? This fourth one is doing much better, and the dough doesn't crawl up because the bowl is much bigger. However it is still underpowered for bagel dough or whole grain doughs except in small batches. Don't expect to make the suggested amount of dough that KA claims it will hold. With bagel or whole grain doughs, the bowl is plenty big, but the motor doesn't like it. Also, if you use any speed above 2 (which is pretty wimpy), they claim it will void the warranty. THUS, someone PLEASE make a mixer that is between the KA professional and the Hobart and will fit on your kitchen counter and is not more than $750. As a side note, if you do get the KA professional for your bread, it does not do small things well that are not bread. The bowl is too big for whipping a stick of butter or a cup of cream. The beater attachement doesn't come close enough to the bottom of the bowl. The best thing it does is double batches of normal baking and small doses of bread. Bagels, cut the recipe in two parts if making 5 lb (about 20 bagels). It won't handle the entire batch without going into death throes. 

hanseata's picture
hanseata

I fell victim to last years Black Monday hype, and bought the special offer KA-600 from Amazon, advertized for $ 209.00 (after mail-in rebate). Though I was never happy with my KA Artisan, I had heard somewhere that the new KA-600 had a better quality.

Not only didn't the package contain any forms (or information) on how to get the rebate - but the mixer also appears to be totally unusable for my purposes. I wanted a second, larger mixer for making pre-doughs and smaller batches of bread (I have a 7-qt Cuisinart and a 20-qt Hobart). To my amazement I realized, like Geggers and others here, that you can use the kneading hook only up to speed 2. The higher speeds are exclusively for mixing or beating light batters or egg whites.

I tried the mixer for several different pre-doughs, and found that kneading a heavier dough (ca. 1000 g) even at speed 2 resulted in the bowl shaking so violently that its divet disconnected from the counter part on the stand where it snaps into. I ended up having to hold the bowl in place so that it wouldn't move so much. I also had to scrape down the sides of the bowl several times, very annoying.

The only thing I could mix fine so far was egg white. So much for the "Professional" of the mixer!

I am glad that I still have my 7-qt Cuisinart. Compared to the KA-600 it is a real work horse! I make all my pre-doughs in it, the dough hook grabs even smaller amounts, it is rarely necessary to scrape down the bowl, and I mix doughs up to medium-high speed - even heavy whole grain doughs.

I really do not understand why the KA still gets good reviews - what are these people mixing? Buttercream?

Karin

geggers's picture
geggers

Lol, Karin, it doesn't even work that well for buttercream, as there is too much space between the bottom and sides of the bowl and the beater attachement. As for the divet problem, I've had the same thing happen. Pretty sad when you have have to hold the bowl in place while mixing. Though all mixers can have a "dud," I've had four..... in one year. KA is about done with me calling to complain, though they've always been very nice, and have sent replacements promptly. 

I do admit though, they sure are good-looking! I read about the man who designs them, and even though they don't work very well..... they're quite attractive sitting on the counter!

 

hanseata's picture
hanseata

Isn't it nice to know that they splurged on design what they didn't invest in quality? I was already astonished, when I unpacked the box, how light weight the attachments were.

Grrrrhhhh!

Karin

Pain Partout's picture
Pain Partout

A couple months ago, my KitchenAid Limited Edition Pro 620 (575 W) died.  The front planetary housing fell off while I was kneading only  two pounds of  fairly high-hydration dough. Ka-Plunk...right into the bowl.   I could see that the #$#@!&$#!  unit did appear to have metal gears though.  Gave KA, and all my pricey attachements to a friend who is determined to overhaul the mixer.  When she removed the case, she also found that the (plastic) gear casing was badly cracked.    I had bought this KA to replace an ancient smaller KA that I had purchased in Canada pre 1980, as the original smaller KA struggled with bread and grinding meat (but NEVER broke).   I had owned the KA Pro 620 four six years, and it was never abused.  I will likely never  buy another KA stand mixer. 

For a replacement,  I did consider the larger Cuisinart, but succombed to the Bosch Universal Plus.  This machine is made in Slovenia, NOT Germany, if you read the fine print on the box. Sigh.  That said, so far,...this mixer has effortlessly handled any amount of dough that I have made with it.  I like the nice open bowl top to the unit, that makes adding large amounts of flour, etc easy.  The poly bowl cleans up nicely, and the dough hook, and other parts are quick to dismantel/clean.  The Bosch U-Plus does a great job of developing gluten. It appears very efficient in the kneading process.  I have not made any small amounts of dough in the machine.

I bought my Bosch through Pleasant Hill Grain, and was pleased with the transaction, and fast shipping.

So far, I am quite pleased with the Bosch Universal Plus.

 

 

bartwin's picture
bartwin

I've been using the Kenwood for years and love it for bread.  I believe it has been bought out by DeLonghi and sold in the US under that brand.  

pjaj's picture
pjaj

Yes, we were given our Kenwood Chef Major A707A as a wedding present and we'll be celebrating our 40th anniversary in a few months. It's still going strong, but I've had to rebuild it twice. Once the gear box about 6-7 years ago and last week I cannibalised a spare machine bought off eBay for a replacement motor and speed controller assembly. Should be good for a few more loaves now.

Yumika's picture
Yumika

After ample consideration I decided to mothball my Japanese made Kai mixer, which looks very much like a Hamilton. It served me well for more than 7 years, but I wanted a mixer that can handle a little more dough and after reading a lot of comments and reviews found the Bosch Compact a suitable candidate. I almost bought one here in Japan on auction for 28,000 yen, while the list price is 39,900. The Kai lists at 39,900 too, but generally sells for less than half that price. Just before transferring the money for the Bosch on auction, I had a peek at appliances for sale on Amazon.de (Germany). I was shocked to see that here it sells for 52.86 euros for export outside the EU. Including the shipping the price is less than half of the auction deal.

I bought the appliance from Amazon.de and am now awaiting its delivery.

The URL to the site: http://www.amazon.de/gp/product/B00008K5XU/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

DRJT's picture
DRJT

Kneading some rye bread and the machine's gears stripped 

brought to certified repair shop

next time I used it for the same recipe it broke again

the. The repair shop said one should only use it for mixing and not kneading, pasta making or almost anything else

bakingmama1's picture
bakingmama1

Sounds like majority of replies recommend Bosch. I'd have to agree. Although I've never personally owned a Kitchen Aid, my friends have. They are cute, I'll admit that! But my friends have gone through mixers faster than I have. My Bosch Universal Plus is AWESOME. It has now been mixing for me for 4 years with a family of 5, and is still going strong despite my large batches of white bread. Bosch's compact mixer is great too, or so I hear.  But if I were you, I'd keep reading reviews and asking around. I totally support Bosch, but I guess it also depends on what you want to use your mixer for.

I hope that helps. Best of luck!