I grew up watching my mother use her stand mixer to make cakes, cookies, frosting, and bread.
Nowadays, there are food processors that mix batters and doughs, and hand mixers to whip up egg whites. They’re cheaper and easier to store, but somehow… less dignified.
So is there any reason to own a stand mixer, anymore?
I got one on Christmas and I love it. The dough hook is a hand saver. It’s nice to not have to stand around with my hand over the mixer to beat eggs or whip cream. I turn it on and turn my attention to other cooking.
I don’t know if it’s necessary, but it’s pretty durn sweet.
I gave my wife a standard Kitchenaid mixer a few years ago. She uses it probably twice a week because she bakes a lot. Her hands are starting to bug her - a little arthritis - and this has helped her immensely. She loves it.
A blender’s not the same, either in capacity or in capabilities. They’re fine for smoothies and daquiries, though.
Stand mixers have actually undergone quite a renaissance as of late; it’s hard to go to a kitchenware section/store without seeing multiple models, at least in the popular KitchenAid brand if not others as well. They’re very well suited to their task, mixing up stuff for long periods of time, and typically can handle larger quantities and more stiff ingredients than food processors seem to. If my kitchen weren’t so tiny (I don’t even have a food processor, but don’t need that nearly as much as a stand mixer) I’d have one by now. Instead, I have a little hand mixer with various attachments, and avoid any projects that need extended mixing or preferred usage of a stand mixer.
I love my KitchenAid. It gets used once or twice a week, more if I am in a baking mood. OTOH, I haven’t uncovered the blender in years, and generally prefer to do by hand what the processor can do.
A KitchenAid on the counter is an essential to any good cook. While other appliances may do some of the jobs that a KitchenAid does, none of them will do it with the finesse. Also, a KitchenAid does all of it as opposed to specialized tasks. It is also worth mentioning that a KitchenAid will last nearly forever. My great-grandmother has been using hers several times a week for decades. It is still in great shape. I challenge any Cuisinart to that sort of durability.
I like them. In addition to what others said above, they’re handy because you don’t need to be holding the mixer all the time. This means while food-in-the-making is being mixed you can be off doing other things, e.g. lining up the next ingredients, flouring a pan, etc.
I have a Kitchenaid and love the capabilities. It mixes faster and more thoroughly than any other product. I have the grinder attachment, sausage tubes, and the pasta attachments, which are nothing short of miraculous.
I have a KitchenAid mixer too…it was my grandmothers, probablly 35+ yrs old and still as good as new. The only thing that COULD go out on it is the motor brushes and they are easily replaceable. I can still get ANY replacement part or accessory I need cause nothing has changed. Kitchenaid is also Hobart (and whirlpool) a HUGE name in comercial mixers and professional equipment. When I was a bench-hand Baker Hobart had a contest for the oldest working commercial mixer. We were not even CLOSE with a 65 yr old 80qt mixer, talk about “built to last”.
I have (old model number) a K4.5…thoough I would LOVE a 14cup drop bowl KM25G0X
We have a KitchenAid as well. It’s a hell of a machine. All the little hand mixers I’ve used seem to labour a bit after all the flour in batches of cookies have gone in. The KitchenAid just pluggs along.
I’ve got the meat grinder attachment that I’ve used a fair amount.
I have a KitchenAid stand mixer that I love but I have a seperate electric meat grinder. I hunt and I’m not trying to put that kind of wear on my KitchenAid. Even Cake-In-A-Box’s taste better and have a better consistency coming from my stand mixer than anything I did by hand or with a handheld mixer.
I have a Sunbeam MixMaster stand mixer. It is totally convenient for baking precisely because you can set it to mix and go off to get more ingredients or add ingredients while it’s mixing. Can’t do that with a hand mixer, and a food processor doesn’t have any sort of gentle mixing option, you’re either off or blasting the hell out of the food.
As an aside, I never quite got the appeal of the KitchenAid for the home user. I found the design really awkward for adding ingredients, and for scraping the sides of the bowl. While the MixMaster’s off center design may not mix as quickly, I love being able to add ingredients with room to spare, and just sticking a spatula down the side, letting the rotating bowl scrape as it goes around.
Making a cheesecake will toast a hand mixer. You must have a powerful stand mixer.
I, too, have a KitchenAid Professional stand mixer, and I love it. True, there are times that months’ll go by and I haven’t used it, but then I’ll use it every week for a month straight. You really can’t beat 'em.
KitchenAid rocks. I have a French Silk Pie recipe that calls for beating each of four eggs for five minutes and trust me you need a stand mixer for that. It’s just wonderful for mixing up big batches thoroughly and smoothly.
My mother had hers for 30+ years (small repairs needed, done by pop) and I have had mine for ~8; I got it for $166 and it’s the best investment ever.
I have a big woofy Kenwood (yep, Kenwood) stand mixer that I bought after a burned out a motor on a smaller mixer by making a large amount of bread dough. I love this mixer for making heavy dough like that - while I also adore my food processor, I cannot imagine it making dough. And the Kenwood has a whole bunch of attachments, too. Mine came with a blender pitcher, and you can also get a meat grinder, a sausage extruder, a grain mill, pasta makers, shredders, slicers, a juice extractor, a potato peeler, etc. etc. etc.
I have a Kitchenaid that my parents gave me as a housewarming gift when I moved out. I was lost before it came, as my parents have one. I can’t even begin to use a hand mixer for anything. I’ll use a pastry cutter first.