The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

What's a good machine for whole grain breads?

breadguy9's picture

What's a good machine for whole grain breads?

Any suggestions as to what would be a good or even best machine for whole grain breads? Something with variable time settings (custom programable) and 1 - 2lb capacity... Thank you.

bshuval's picture

Why would you need a bread machine anyhow? It is not difficult to bake bread without machines. If you don't like hand-kneading, either buy a good-quality stand mixer, or use the intermittent kneading methods a la Lepard or Hadjiandreou. 


jcking's picture

Why would one purchase a computer when a piece of paper and pencil are much cheaper? Consider that not everyone has access to an oven; college student, renting a room, etc. Some would consider it rude to answer a question with a question.

proth5's picture

I became interested in researching and purchasing a bread machine.  I am a fan of Zojirushi appliances (because of their wonderful design and functionality), but one of the comments on the Zo is that it has a lot of programming options.  Including one for whole grains.

One of the other comments on all but the Virtuoso is that the top of the bread does not brown properly.  With the Virtuoso there is a heating element in the lid that addresses this problem.

Pleasant Hill Grains (with whom I am not affiliated) sells Zojirushi machines.  They are a premium product with a premium price and this may be a factor for you.

The King Arthur test kitchen (and these are folks who can have any equipment that they want to have) uses Zo machines to a lot of their yeast dough mixing.

Hope this information helps.

breadguy9's picture

Thank you, proth5 - 

I've been looking at Zo. I almost bought the mini until I read a review that it wasn't effective with whole grains. I'm electing a machine as my intention is to produce smaller loaves. Pre-heating an oven for a 1lb loaf doesn't seem to make sense although bshuval makes a good unsolicited point. Also, even though I'm recently retired, I still tend to multi-task and a machine better suits this requirement.

I will look more closely at the Zo and am also looking at the Delonghi DBM450 which is programmable and allows for 5 personal saved settings.

Again, thank you for your insights.