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Dough Mixer Buying Guide
Shopping for a stand mixer can be daunting. There’s such a wide variety of quality options that it can be difficult to narrow down the best one for your needs. Let’s first consider what you’re looking for in a mixer.
Stand mixers can be your complete kitchen center, offering you the ability to knead bread dough, shred chicken, whip meringue, mash potatoes, blend smoothies, grind meat, grain, or coffee beans, flake oats, shred or spiralize vegetables, make ice cream, juice citrus fruit, and the list goes on… we have mixers that can do all of this and more!
Maybe you already have appliances to perform many of the tasks that a complete kitchen center could accomplish and you’re on the hunt for the best dough mixer for everything from bagels to pizza dough. We offer mixers that are designed specifically for developing the very best dough imaginable for the home or commercial kitchen—dough that can transform your baked goods in ways you’ve probably considered unattainable. We’ll discuss those options further down this page.
This guide will take you through the major considerations of choosing the bread mixer that’s best for you. First we’ll provide a summary of each of our mixers that could serve as a complete kitchen center, sorted by capacity from low to high. Next we’ll summarize our spiral dough stand mixers and why you might want this style of mixer. After introducing these mixers from six different brands we’ll cover factors including:
- Gluten Development
- Speeds & Pulse
- Can I make just one loaf of bread?
- Bowl Material & Shape
- Weight & Storage
- Warranty Length
At the bottom of our guide you’ll find a comparison chart with several of these key characteristics, and a link to a comparison chart showing commercial spiral mixers.
If you’re looking for a versatile, multi-purpose mixer for bread dough, cookies, muffins, cakes, and whipping meringue and cream, we have a variety of options for you including the NutriMill Artiste, WonderMix Revolution, Bosch Compact, Bosch Universal Plus, Ankarsrum, and the Haussler Alpha. Each of these mixers have optional accessories that really extend the capabilities of the mixer.
Capacity: 6 pounds
The Bosch Compact is our smallest mixer, offering you a truly compact option to fit into small kitchens (it’s great for RVs!). It’s a small but mighty machine with its 400 watt motor. The 6.4 quart bowl can knead up to 6 pounds of whole grain bread dough, which is enough for four loaves of bread. The Bosch Compact comes standard with a dough hook, French whip, and batter whisk. Available accessories include a blender, food processor, slicer shredder, citrus juicer, and more. Enjoy German-engineered Bosch features, quality and performance in an extremely affordable, integrated system. With standard attachments and available accessories, this stand mixer/kitchen center performs a myriad of kitchen functions quickly and easily and occupies very little space in your kitchen.
Planetary Spin: The Bosch Compact's whip drive doesn't just spin... it also rotates within the bowl. This combination action provides fantastically thorough mixing and whipping. And when the stainless dough hook is attached, it ensures that dough is kneaded to perfection for outstanding baking results!
Capacity: 10 pounds
Both the NutriMill Artiste and the WonderMix Revolution mixers can handle up to 10 pounds of dough, for six loaves of bread in 8" loaf pans. Both are strong mixers that are capable of kneading whole wheat dough, and they have a similar dough hook design. The circulatory kneading of these mixers does an excellent job of developing gluten, so your dough will rise properly and your baked goods will have the light and uniform texture you want. A blender can be attached to the Revolution, but the Artiste doesn’t have this option. The Artiste offers an optional spiralizer and ice cream maker that the Revolution doesn’t offer. Accessories such as a grain mill, flaker, meat grinder, food processor, and slicer shredder are available for both mixers.
Capacity: 11-1/2 pounds
The Ankarsrum, with its unique roller and scraper design kneads smooth, silky, elastic dough quickly and easily. The Ankarsrum mixer comes standard with a stainless mixing bowl and the roller and scraper, as well as a plastic beater bowl, double beater whisks and cake whisks. A wide range of optional accessories can be attached to the Ankarsrum mixer to make it a complete kitchen center. The Ankarsrum can knead up to 11.5 pounds of dough at once, which is enough for seven loaves of bread. This mixer kneads very gently which makes it exceptional for rye bread, since rye has a very weak gluten structure and can become extremely gluey if mixed with too much force.
The biggest difference between dense, heavy baked goods and delightfully textured products is proper development of the gluten in the dough, and the powerful Ankarsrum AKM 6230 mixer is a master of kneading technique!
(Note: This mixer used to be called the Electrolux Assistent, and then went by Verona, before being renamed again, to Ankarsrum.)
Capacity: 14 pounds
The Bosch Universal Plus kneads up to 14 pounds of whole wheat dough, and can whip meringue and cream, blend smoothies and soup, grind flour, slice, shred or spiralize vegetables, make ice cream, grind meat, and more. This is another impressive kitchen center! The Bosch Universal Plus comes standard with a DoughMaster dough hook, dough hook extender for mixing as little as one loaf of bread and French whips.
The BreadMaster hook vigorously incorporates oxygen, processing 100% of your dough every four rotations. Inferior mixers merely stir the dough, never achieving the Bosch Universal Plus’s level of gluten development. Proper gluten development produces light bread with great texture. Merely stirring the dough produces "brick bread." As many as nine loaves of fabulous fresh sandwich bread can be out of your oven in just 75 to 80 minutes!
In addition to the mixers listed above, we offer a few larger options, with spiral dough hooks, that excel at bread dough. These options are designed specifically for superior dough results, and aren’t going to offer all the additional options that the complete kitchen centers described above will offer. If you’re shopping for the very best bread mixer though, that can handle both high hydration and low hydration dough, look no further than our spiral mixers from Famag and Haussler.
Engineered expressly for ideal dough-mixing and kneading results, spiral mixers feature a spiral agitator that remains stationary while the bowl rotates, bringing the dough to the stainless steel dough hook with each revolution. This action is exceptionally thorough and uniform, while avoiding both overworking and overheating of the dough.
Dough that other mixers can’t handle, or struggle with—such as pizza or bagel dough—are mixed easily, quickly and efficiently in spiral mixers. Doughs of all kinds, from heavy to high-hydration artisan doughs, come out smooth, silky and perfectly developed.
Famag and Haussler mixers are quite similar in design and capabilities. While many spiral mixers on the market are sized (and priced) strictly for large commercial operations, these brands offer sizes small enough to use in a home kitchen. Famag mixers come with a 3 year home or 1 year commercial warranty and Haussler mixers come with a 1 year home or commercial warranty.
The Haussler Alpha mixer offers a couple of attachments to make the mixer more versatile. A paddle attachment is useful for mixing cookie dough, cake batter, pasta dough, and rye/pumpernickel bread dough, and the optional whisk attachment offers a way to whip egg whites and whipping cream.
Famag mixers have no optional accessories; they’re dedicated bread mixers that make no compromises in the pursuit of the ultimate bread dough.
All Famag mixers have an integrated breaker bar, which the Haussler mixers don’t include. A breaker bar ensures ideal metering of the dough into the spiral hook. This three-way kneading process is exceptionally thorough and fast, yet the low impact and widely distributed dough contact of the spiral hook completely avoids overworking and overheating of the dough. Wide-range, infinitely variable speed adjustment lets you dial in precisely the action you want.
Haussler bread mixers are available in six models with capacities from 16 pounds (7.2 kg) of bread dough to 143 pounds (64.8 kg). The Alpha mixer is the smallest model, and the only countertop mixer in the line. All the rest of our Haussler mixers are floor standing and come mounted on casters.
Famag bread mixers are available in seven models ranging from a 16 pound (7.2 kg) capacity to a 110 lb. (50 kg) dough capacity. The three smallest models are countertop mixers; larger models are floor-standing and come with attached casters.
Gluten is the developed mixture of liquid with proteins containing gliadin and glutenin. Gliadin and glutenin are found in the endosperm of wheat, rye and barley. Gluten allows yeast bread dough to be elastic, have a nice rise and hold its shape, but for all of this to happen it’s essential for gluten to be well developed. Working the dough by kneading it, as well as letting the dough rest will develop the gluten as needed for bread with optimum texture and structure. Trying the “windowpane test” will show if the gluten has developed sufficiently within dough. Gluten is a good source of protein. When more gluten is desired, dry vital wheat gluten may be purchased to add into a recipe. (See our vital wheat gluten.)
Each of the mixers on this page develop dough well so you'll be able to stretch it into a thin windowpane without tearing, but some mixers do a better job of this than others.
Dough Mixers Ranked by Gluten Development
|WonderMix Revolution||Bosch Universal Plus||Haussler|
Are you shopping for a new mixer because your previous mixer broke as you tried to mix whole wheat bread dough? We've heard that story many times. Fortunately, all the mixers at Pleasant Hill Grain have the strength and power to knead whole grain bread dough. Kneading is the process of developing gluten in bread dough and bringing the dough altogether into a cohesive mass. Kneading is sufficiently accomplished when the windowpane test is passed. Compared to other mixers on the market, the motors in the mixers we carry won’t burn up when put under heavy loads.
The Ankarsrum and Famag mixers have an infinitely adjustable speed knob, and each of the other mixers have between 2 and 4 speed settings. The Bosch Universal Plus and WonderMix Revolution mixers also have a pulse feature.
Certain recipes, for example rye breads, require a very slow, gentle knead. The mixers we recommend for the most gentle kneading are the Ankarsrum and Haussler Alpha (with the paddle attachment).
Yes! Each of the mixers on this page from the small Bosch Compact to the large Famag IM-10S spiral mixer will mix and knead dough for as little as one loaf of bread (approximately 1-1/2 pounds of dough).
The new Dough Hook Extender accessory for the Bosch Universal mixer is placed under the dough hook and fits snugly against it. The extender sweeps the center column, allowing as little as one to two loaves of bread to be mixed and kneaded perfectly. It fits the Bosch Universal Plus mixer as well as the older Bosch Universal Classic model. The dough hook extender is now included standard with Bosch Universal Plus mixers! The NutriMill Artiste dough hook has a similar dough hook extender attached to it.
The aesthetic quality of the mixer matters to some shoppers. Those who prefer a mixer in a pretty color to coordinate with their kitchen, and don’t want a lot of plastic on their mixer may want to consider the handsomely designed Ankarsrum, Famag and Haussler mixers. These mixers come in many colors including red, silver, orange, blue, green, yellow and even pink. Some colors are pearlescent and most colors have a glossy finish, with a few in matte finish.
Our most popular mixer colors include red, white, silver, dark blue and orange. Ankarsrum's newest additions are deep Forest Green which has a matte finish, and Ocean Blue which is glossy. In the Famag line we recently added Lemon Gelato and Raspberry Pink!
The NutriMill Artiste, WonderMix Revolution, and white Bosch Universal Plus mixers are more utilitarian in design. The new black Bosch Universal Plus with stainless steel bowl is an attractive option among our plainer mixers.
All of our mixers come standard with a stainless steel bowl, or a stainless bowl can be purchased separately, except in the case of the WonderMix Revolution mixer.
The following mixers come standard with a stainless steel bowl:
- Bosch Universal Plus, white
- Bosch Universal Plus, black
- All Haussler mixers
- All Famag mixers
Bundt shape: The Bosch Universal, WonderMix, NutriMill Artiste and Ankarsrum beater bowl are all shaped like a large bundt cake form—a pioneering design that excels at both mixing and whipping. Twin whips mount on top of the narrow center column, driven from below by a drive shaft. The whips float lightly against the bottom of the bowl, spinning rapidly as they rotate. And the bowl's shape ensures that your ingredients are mixed perfectly.
Regular bowl shape: The Bosch Compact bowl, the stainless Ankarsrum bowl, the optional ER1 stainless bowl for the Bosch Universal Plus, the Haussler bowl and the Famag bowl are all a regular bowl shape, without a center column.
A timer is a convenient feature to have so you can set your mixer and work on other tasks while your dough is developing, knowing that the mixer will automatically shut-off when the time is up. The Haussler Alpha mixer and Ankarsrum mixer are the two mixers we offer that include an integrated timer. The Alpha timer can be set for as long as 30 minutes, and the Ankarsrum timer can be set up to 12 minutes.
Another important consideration for some shoppers is the size and weight of their mixer. If you have the counter space to leave your mixer out on the counter permanently, this won’t be such an issue for you to consider, but many can’t afford to give up counter space for a mixer, so they need to move their mixer in and out of storage every time they use it. Carrying a heavy mixer back and forth, or up and down stairs, just isn’t a feasible option for many of us.
- Bosch Universal Plus
- Bosch Compact
- WonderMix Revolution
- NutriMill Artiste
The following countertop mixers weigh 64 pounds or more, so most users will want to find a permanent home for the mixer, or put it on a rolling kitchen cart or counter roller so it can be rolled in and out of their workstation.
- Famag IM-5S
- Famag IM-8S
- Famag IM-10S
- Haussler Alpha
Mixer height is a concern for bakers who have kitchen cupboards mounted above their workspace. Below is a table showing the height of our coutertop mixers. For mixers with tiltable heads, we measured with the head up. The height listed is without any attachment on the mixer. Some attachments, such as a blender, add height to some of the mixers when the attachment is in use.
Height of Mixers
|Bosch Universal Plus||10.6”|
|Famag Grilletta IM-5S||26”|
Warranty Length of Mixers
|NutriMill Artiste||1 year home|
|WonderMix Revolution||3 year limited lifetime home|
|Bosch Compact||1 year home|
|Bosch Universal Plus||3 year home||1 year home|
|Ankarsrum||7 year home||1 year home|
|Haussler Alpha||1 year home or commercial|
|Famag Grilletta IM-5S||3 year home, 1 year commercial|
|Famag IM-8S||3 year home, 1 year commercial|
|Famag IM-10S||3 year home, 1 year commercial|
The table below lets you compare the features and key specs of our stand mixers, and more details are available on individual product pages. If you have questions not answered here or would just like to discuss your particular needs, our knowledgeable customer service representatives would love to talk with you.
Dough Mixer Comparison
You can see all of our dough mixers here (link opens in new window)
|Stand Mixer||Bowl |
|Dough Capacity ||Flour Capacity ||Motor||Kneading|
|Ankarsrum Original||7.5 qts.||11.5 lbs.||6.7 lbs.||120V, 600W||Roller + Scraper or Hook||
|Famag IM-10||13.7 qts.||26 lbs.||17.4 lbs.||110V, 400W||Spiral||
|Famag IM-8||11.5 qts.||22 lbs.||13 lbs.||110V, 400W||Spiral||
|Famag Grilletta IM-5||8.4 qts.||16 lbs.||10.6 lbs.||110V, 350W||Spiral||
|Haussler Alpha||9 qts.||16 lbs.||10.6 lbs.||110V, 370W||Spiral||
|Bosch Universal Plus w/Stainless Bowl||6.5 qts.||14 lbs.||8 lbs.||120V, 800W||Hook||
|12.75 lbs.||4 + Pulse|
|Bosch Universal Plus w/Stainless Bowl, Black||6.5 qts.||14 lbs.||8 lbs.||120V, 800W||Hook||
|12.75 lbs.||4 + Pulse|
|Bosch Universal Plus||6.5 qts.||14 lbs.||8 lbs.||120V, 800W||Hook||
|12.75 lbs.||4 + Pulse|
|Bosch Compact||4 qts.||6 lbs.||3.8 lbs.||120V, 400W||Hook||
|WonderMix||5.5 qts.||10 lbs.||6.4 lbs.||120V, 900W||Hook||
|13 lbs.||3 + Pulse|
|NutriMill Artiste Mixer||6.5 qts.||10 lbs.||6.4 lbs.||120V, 650W||Hook||