I have used a hand mixer and a stand mixer as well and truly speaking a stand mixer is much more superior. But with a stand mixer you have to pay a little bit more for the convenience, better capabilities and features. I am sure you don’t want to keep on replacing your stand mixer, just like with other appliances. So, before you drive off to the appliance shop take into consideration the following things I have provided for you.
Which size is good for you?
The first thing I think you should consider before you buy your stand mixer is the available counter space as well as storage space. If you have limited space I suggest you go for the smaller units but make sure it is at least 25 pounds. Mixers with lesser weight than that will tend to “walk” across the counter. The types of things you use with your mixer will also determine the size you choose. Is it mostly for mixing bread dough or just cookie dough?
Which speed do you need?
One of the reasons I believe you chose a stand mixer over a hand mixer is the speed. Typically, stand mixers come with different speed options, with some going up to ten speed settings. If you want the mixer for your usual home cooking, go for one with 6 speed settings. I would advise you to choose a unit with a slow start setting to allow ingredient to settle properly on the bowl.
Is lifting better than tilting?
I always thought of it as a trivial decision whether to buy a tilting or a lifting stand mixer but it is actually a very important decision. Unlike with a lifting mixer, the entire mixer and head of the tilting device is raised up away from the bowl. You might require about 5-6 inches of clear space above while operating this mixer.
Features and accessories
Beaters of stand mixers are more less the same as those of hand mixers. Typically they will come with a dough hook for kneading pizza dough, flat beater for mixing cake and a wire whip for making meringue and whipped cream. Although both metal and nylon materials work equally well, I recommend the metal ones due to their durability.
Did you know that your stand mixer hub can be used with other accessories such as a juicer, meat grinder, sausage stuffer, grain mill and pasta maker? Well, I thought I should let you know of this interesting fact. So, when buying a stand mixer make sure it can be used with these additional accessories if you plan to use it for more than just baking.