When it comes to choosing between a hand mixer and a stand mixer, both are very practical kitchen appliances. Basically, it comes down to price, versatility and function. Each type of mixer has its own pros and cons. Here’s a list of some of the advantages and disadvantages of each.
Electric Hand Mixers
- Costs less than a stand mixer
- Fast cleanup
- Easy to store out of sight
- Great for quick mixing jobs, like whipping cream, egg whites or cake batter
- Can use with any bowl
- Can’t mix large quantities like you can with a more powerful stand mixer
- Splashes easily
- Thick batters are hard to mix
The Cadillac of mixers comes with a heavy duty motor, mounting base for a lock-in-place bowl, various mixing attachments, including: a or paddle for creaming and mixing, a whisk attachment for whipping cream or egg whites, and a dough hook for kneading bread dough.
- Less splashing
- You don’t have to be holding the bowl or mixer the whole time
- Quicker mixing
- Handles thick batter or dough
- Comes with all the bells and whistles (timers, automatic stop and programmable settings)
- Hard to clean
- Much more expensive than hand mixers
- Big and heavy so tend to leave them out on the counter, taking up counter space
Before investing in a stand mixer ask yourself these questions:
- Do I really need a stand mixer?
- Will I use my stand mixer at least one a week?
- Do I have space for a stand mixer?
- Will I use my stand mixer for anything other than baking?
- Is it in my budget?
If you’ve answered “yes” to all these questions, a stand mixer would be a worthwhile investment for your cooking style. Stand mixers come in price ranges from $100 to over $400. If you bake a lot and intend on using a mixer for bread, don’t even think about getting a lower-priced, lower-powered model. I made that mistake and when my husband made a huge batch of chocolate chip cookies for work, the motor died and we threw it away. Now I’m back to my reliable little electric hand mixer which I’ve had for over fifteen years.
So which is best for you?
Since a stand mixer is higher priced than a hand mixer, you’ll want to be sure you’ll get your money’s worth before purchasing. If you’re an avid home baker you’ll appreciate the extra power and function of a stand mixer. If you often bake for school or social functions, you’ll be very glad to have a stand mixer that you can walk away and can do the job faster.
At the very least, every kitchen should a hand mixer. I have a bread making machine so I don’t need a stand mixer for making bread. I have a food processor that I use for soups and heavy-duty mixing. I may consider investing in a more powerful and durable KitchenAid rather than the flimsy model I previously bought. But I also like the ease of use, storage, and cleaning of a hand held mixer. Plus, I feel like I can see what’s going on better with my hand held mixer. The only thing that gets under my skin is the amount of batter that shoots out of the bowl if I use the high speed function.
That’s why I was glad to find this neat little gadget online:
Now that I solved the flying batter issue, I might hold on to my little hand held mixer just a little bit longer.