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Which Kitchenaide Mixer Attachment/s Do You Recommend?

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Sparklebright Jun 27, 2012 12:00 PM

I have a Kitchenaide Mixer and love it.
I am looking at a shredder/slicer attachment as I seem to be using my box grater a lot.
Have also thought about the pasta roller attachment.
Have never *successfully* made my own fresh pasta but am feeling a desire to explore the joys of fresh pasta.

Which attachments do you have and love?

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  1. dcrb RE: Sparklebright Jun 27, 2012 10:14 PM

    We have the grater/shredder and the meat grinder. Both get used although the grater/slicer sees more use. The meat grinder is used rarely having decided that a Cuisinart does a fine job with meat and does it quicker although it is more of a chop than a grind. It also shreds hard cheese quicker than the attachment. My advice, and that is all it is, is to buy what you need to do what you want. I know the attachments are not inexpensive, so you may want to look at thrift stores, ebay and the like for a bargain.

    The attachment are great but I sometimes feel that dedicated standalones might be better/faster. However, you need a lot of storage room and/or counter space. But for most people with average space, the attachments make sense and perform well. Goos luck.

    2 Replies
    1. re: dcrb
      greygarious RE: dcrb Jul 7, 2012 09:50 AM

      I've had a search going on eBay for KA attachments for over a year. There have been NONE that are bargains. I check thrift shops occasionally but nothing so far.

      1. re: greygarious
        dcrb RE: greygarious Jul 7, 2012 10:04 AM

        greygarious,

        You are correct on the issue of bargains. A lot of the attachments made of metal are rare and command a high price on eBay, possibility because of collector demand. I just checked and there is an all metal root slicer that looks bright and shiny. Not cheap. There are also some rather rough looking metal attachments also commanding a kings ransom. I too look at thrift shops and charity bazaars; quite often one can find a true treasure and a great price.

    2. Sid Post RE: Sparklebright Jun 29, 2012 09:22 AM

      Sparklebright,

      I have an older Kitchenaid model I bought ~25 years ago. I loved it so much I bought an identical one for my Mom, and my best friends when they moved into their new house. For someone used to making $7 an hour, that was a huge investment I have never regretted.

      For pasta, I would strongly recommend an Italian hand roller unless you make a lot of pasta several times a week. For a small family, a Mercato Atlas or Iperia (watch out for imitation knock offs) Italian pasta machine is a real joy to use and only runs ~$50 or so on Ebay (less if your patient ;-).

      The grater works real well on large blocks of cold cheese but, to be honest I don't use it. The meat grinder is nice but, again gets very little use. I thought I wanted a grain mill but, to be honest I don't grind enough grain to make that worthwhile.

      While I love my Kitchenaid mixer for "mixing", I rarely use anything out of my original 4-pack of accessories. The accessories work fine but, I find a dedicated machine just works better if I use it enough to be worth the effort to mount a similar thing to my mixer.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Sid Post
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        wandajune6 RE: Sid Post Jul 13, 2012 10:59 AM

        I'm using a 50+ year old Italian hand roller for pasta. I was going to buy the KA attachment after trying a friend's but, when I realized the price, I decided to take my grandmother's offer of a long-term loan of hers. I find that a hand machine is very easy to use and much more convenient than that attachment. There was a slightly steeper learning curve for me but it's definitely worth it.

        I also have a hand-me-down grain mill from my boyfriend's mom. I have never used it nor can I think of a reason to as of yet. I have the space for it now but, should that change, it's gone.

        1. re: Sid Post
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          thimes RE: Sid Post Jul 14, 2012 01:07 PM

          I have a different take on the pasta attachment - I LOVE mine and use it all the time.

          I had roll pasta, have a hand crank Atlas roller, and the pasta attachment for my KA. On a weeknight if I'm making pasta my go-to without a doubt are the KA attachments. I can roll out much more, much more quickly, and with less effort. I rarely pull out my Atlas anymore (though it works perfectly well and I have nothing against it - it served me well for years).

        2. j
          Janet RE: Sparklebright Jun 29, 2012 06:21 PM

          We have nearly every attachement. We use the meat grinder for ground beef and sausage 90% of the time. I prefer my box grater and food processor to the attachement. Think about what you cook. What do you already have?What do you really need? some thing works just fine with a good knife. Most of my attachments take up room and just don't get used.

          1. jillp RE: Sparklebright Jun 30, 2012 05:10 PM

            We use the meat grinder more than any other attachment.

            1. n
              nutmegr RE: Sparklebright Jul 7, 2012 09:20 AM

              If you can find them, the old aluminum attachments are far better than the newer plastic ones. I ended up replacing my plastic ones as they would seriously crack around the place where it joins to the hub. Which attachments you should get is of course entirely dependent on what you cook. I use the meat grinder and the slicer/shredder constantly. The slicer/shredder is actually terrible for slicing, I only use it for grating hard cheese - but I use it 3 or 4 times a week for that so it is tremendously helpful to me! I also am very happy with the pasta roller attachment. With my old hand crank machine, I really had only one hand available to use - the electric motor means I can use both hands to feed the dough through, which is super helpful.

              If you don't know if you will use them often, the newer attachments are cheaper and easily available. If you'd like the old aluminum ones you'll have to hunt - estate sales, tag sales and eBay are your best bet.

              1. Njchicaa RE: Sparklebright Jul 7, 2012 09:44 AM

                I have the pasta roller set and love it. That being said it is reeeeeeeeeeeeally expensive. I grew up using the hand-cranked pasta machines with my family to make pasta sheets, ravioli, fettuccini, etc., but that was with a work crew of like 10 people to take turns cranking the thing. The roller attachments allow me to make pasta quickly and easily all by myself.

                1. ladooShoppe RE: Sparklebright Jul 9, 2012 09:00 AM

                  I was considering the pasta roller attachment but since I didn't plan on making pasta that often, I saved my beans and went for a hand crank one instead, which I love.
                  We have the meat grinder and sausage stuffer. We use the meat grinder fairly regularly for griding chuck and chicken thighs (I just don't trust ground chicken from the grocery store).
                  The sausage stuffer is a fun tool too (but pairs with the meat grinder), obviously if you plan on making your own sausages.

                  1. s
                    sb23508j RE: Sparklebright Nov 18, 2012 07:08 AM

                    I have a full set of the attachments, but the one I use the most is the can opener! With a small galley-style kitchen, I every square foot of countertop space is valuable. When I *do* need grate, grind, slice, make pasta, etc... it's easy enough to take off the can opener attachment and snap on the right tool for the job.

                    As for metal attachments vs. plastic, I find the plastic ones to be pretty serviceable - if you follow the instructions. I washed the Rotary Vegetable slicer on the lower rack of the dishwasher and the heat caused a couple cracks where the metal bushing is encased in plastic.

                    The 1st generation pasta plates (the ones that are used with the food grinder attachment) are a COMPLETE waste of money. Used them a couple times and ended up with a gooey mess. The Pasta Press attachment works very well, although I tend to use the Pasta Roller set because it's faster.

                    The Fruit and Vegetable Strainer Attachment works well, although I prefer using a Vitamix for purees. However, if you want to try your hand and making wheatgrass juice at home, the FVS does a pretty good job. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x3yL7D... KitchenAid doesn't recommend this attachment for "juicing", but they have been toying with the idea of making an actual "juicing" attachment.

                    The biggest advantage the Plastic Food Grinder has over its metal predecessor is the Food Tray attachment. If you do any large volume of chopping/grinding, this tray is awesome.

                    The Citrus Juicer attachment works OK, but I prefer using an old-style manual juice press (the kind with a handle).

                    1. c
                      CheeseheadMarge RE: Sparklebright Nov 18, 2012 07:37 AM

                      If you make pasta, I do recommend the pasta roller attachment. We had used an Atlas hand-crank machine for many years. The women in my family have shoulder issues. The KA roller saves time and pain.

                      I got the ice cream maker. It didn't work well with my 25-year-old mixer. I gave it to my friend who has a newer mixer. She loves it. Always check to see attachments will work with your mixer, especially if you have an old one like me.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: CheeseheadMarge
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                        sb23508j RE: CheeseheadMarge Nov 18, 2012 07:50 AM

                        I have the ice cream maker attachment as well. It works decently, but the stand alone Cuisinart Ice Cream maker is a staple of yard sales and thrift stores. You can pick them up for around $5-$10 and they do a great job! At that price, you can pick up several and make different flavors concurrently.

                        1. re: CheeseheadMarge
                          chefathome RE: CheeseheadMarge Nov 18, 2012 07:52 AM

                          Agree with the pasta roller attachments. They work extremely well, even for gluten-free pasta. Have not tried the ice cream maker so cannot comment on that.

                        2. b
                          blaireso RE: Sparklebright Mar 4, 2014 02:05 PM

                          My SideSwipe mixer blade. It's got little "fins" that guide the batter back down into the bowl. Love love love it! It's after market, not KA, but fits perfectly.

                          I've got the grater attachment and seldom use it except for making latkes.

                          I have a manual Atlas pasta machine which I like and figured it was about a fourth of the cost of the KA attachment. For me, it was the right choice since I don't make fresh pasta all that often.

                          I bought my KA in 1975 (oy vey) and have never regretted it. I learned to use the lowest speed when adding flour, and that a piece of waxed paper makes a great funnel to get the flour in without splashing. Mine is the bowl lift, and it was definitely a PITA to lower, scrape, etc. until I got the flexible blade. Changed my relationship completely. I recommend it.

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