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KitchenAid MIxer - Do I really need one?

So, I am contemplating putting a KA mixer on my Christmas list. I'm not a huge baker, but I would like to try some breads and the occasional dessert. I need to know what everyone uses their mixer for most, and has anyone had success with the pasta attachment? I'm just not sure if I would use it enough, although I do come across recipes now and than that call for a mixer and I make do without. Thanks for all your help.

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  1. I absolutely adore mine and use it all the time. I'm not a huge baker either, but when I do want to bake it comes in handy. I also have the pasta maker attachment (which I LOVE) and the meat grinder. I make my own sausage and grind my own hamburger frequently, so it gets a ton of use. I use it as much as my food processor, maybe more.

    1 Reply
    1. re: biondanonima

      +1. My use is the same as yours. I have found that I will bake a TINY bit more since having it but that isn't why I bought it.

    2. Yep, you need one. I made bread for years without one and since I've had a KA mixer in my kitchen I am one happy camper. I didn't splurge; bought the KSM90 during a $129 special at Target about five years ago. Never had a problem with it. I sometimes choose to knead my bread dough by hand just for the enjoyment of feeling the dough mature. But most of the time I use the mixer.
      IMO, paddle, dough hook, dry ingredient shield and beater are really all you need.

      1. I'll cast a firm vote for "Yes!". I just got mine last year and I looooooooove it! (And they're pretty reasonably priced to boot!)

        1. I've been a big baker and put off getting one for years because I was perfectly happy with my hand mixer and kneading by hand. But, it's made baking so much faster and efficient. I can whip up bread dough with little effort, multi-task and clean as it mixes. It's so fast for everything--from whipping cream to egg whites to buttercream. When it's creaming my butter and sugar, I'm sifting my dry ingredients so that cuts down the time in half. At this point, if it broke, I would replace it immediately.

          Oh, and I wouldn't try making heavier doughs like brioche w/out one.

          1. I have a KA mixer and I love it. I'd suggest the Commercial model -

            http://www.webstaurantstore.com/kitch...

            Cookie dough is the big thing I use it for, followed quickly by Buckeye dough (peanut butter and powdered sugar, makes a VERY stiff dough

            )

            The pasta attachment makes me nervous, it's so expensive. Reviews have been very variable on it. I understand the new one is better than the old, but I think if you're really really interested in pasta you might want to get an actual pasta machine. Most are hand cranked but I've seen where you can get motors for them as sort of an add-on.

            2 Replies
            1. re: ZenSojourner

              I adore my KA mixer. I bought it back in 2002 and have been making breads, cookies and cakes with it whenever I have the chance. While it works like a dream, I sometimes wish I had the artisan model, which has the head you can push out of the way. In any case, I am happy with my KA mixer. It is my pride and joy.

              1. re: ZenSojourner

                I have the KA pasta attachment and it works like a dream. That was the #1 reason I bought the mixer. Then got the grinder attachment.