Kitchenaid Artisan Series tilt-head stand mixer
Our top pick
Cuisinart Precision Master SM-50
Best stand mixer under $200
Hamilton Beach 6-speed stand mixer
Best budget stand mixer
KitchenAid 7-quart bowl-lift stand mixer
Best large stand mixer
What’s the best stand mixer for 2023?
There’s just something stately about a stand mixer in one’s kitchen. As a countertop fixture, it lends a certain culinary seriousness to your space, whether or not you use it every day. Of the many options now available, KitchenAid’s Artisan Series is still the best stand mixer for the money, although some new entries into the category give this stalwart a run for its money.
As a proud, longtime owner of an iconic KitchenAid, I can assure you that, even for occasional use, a stand mixer is well worth your consideration. As someone who chose a stand mixer color to match the kitchen appliances of a relatively new boyfriend at the time of purchase, I can advise you not to do that. A stand mixer has much better longevity than many relationships. (With all due respect to my empire red model, I still long for wedgewood blue.)
Read more: How to Clean a Stand Mixer
A stand mixer differs from a hand mixer in that it has a heavy base and powerful motor that allows you to set it and let it do its thing, rather than needing to supply the literal elbow grease and time to get the mixing done. From cupcake batter to whipped meringue icing to artisanal bread dough, a stand mixer is a versatile piece of equipment to have in your kitchen. It’s also a somewhat large and potentially expensive piece, so we’ve done some digging to assemble our list of the best stand mixers for 2023. With the right purchase, you and your stand mixer can have a lifelong relationship that you can feel good about betting your color palette on.
Best stand mixers for 2023
KitchenAid makes a number of different appliances, but somehow “mixer” seems to be the suffix that best belongs with the brand, and for good reason. I like to fancy myself an iconoclast when it comes to these appliance reviews, in terms of not getting sucked in by unwarranted hype, but this was a no-contest, I’m afraid. Nearly every site that reviewed stand mixers listed this as their No. 1. (One review site that shall remain nameless didn’t even bother to put any other brands on its list.)
As a proud owner since 2008, it is also my No. 1, and I’ve used it to make wedding cakes, industrial batches of cinnamon rolls and everything in between. Not only is it durable and reliable, it’s also iconic and attractive, with a whiff of midcentury and available in numerous, ever-expanding color options. In addition to its good looks, it’s also versatile, with available attachments that put its utility well beyond that of simply mixing. KitchenAid also makes a slightly smaller model, the Artisan Mini, for when you’ve gotta have the brand but don’t have the space.
- Size: 14.1 x 8.7 x 13.9 inches (depth, width, height)
- Weight: 22.8 pounds
- Style: Tilt-head
- Capacity: 5 quarts
- Power: 325 watts
- Number of settings: 10
- Attachments: Paddle, whisk, dough hook, pouring shield; 12 optional attachments, including ice cream maker, meat grinder, pasta roller and spiralizer
You’re receiving price alerts for Kitchenaid Artisan Series tilt-head stand mixer
Cuisinart is to the food processor as KitchenAid is to the stand mixer, but Cuisinart is certainly nothing to sneeze at when it comes to its stand mixers, especially if you’re brand-loyal. If you’re also price-sensitive, this Cuisinart model allows you the security of a major brand name with significant savings over the KitchenAid mixer. (It’s still on the pricey side to be considered “budget,” but that’s where the handy term “value” comes into play.) The look is a little more sleek and industrial than the KitchenAid model but still comes in a generous number of colors. A speed-adjustment dial, rather than levers, may make you feel like you’re able to have more nuance in the speed department, on top of which it offers 12 speed settings, the most of any on this list. And, while the list price is technically $250, we often find it on sale for under $200.
- Size: 14.17 x 7.87 x 14.13 inches (depth, width, height)
- Weight: 20 pounds
- Style: Tilt-head
- Capacity: 5.5 quarts
- Power: 500 watts
- Number of settings: 12
- Attachments: Paddle, whisk, dough hook, pouring shield; 12 optional attachments, including ice cream maker, meat grinder and pasta roller
You’re receiving price alerts for Cuisinart Precision Master SM-50
Compact and relatively light, this Hamilton Beach model was the clear winner when it came to budget stand mixers. In both my own hands-on experience and review evaluations, Hamilton Beach is an extremely reliable brand when it comes to a good money-saving option, and indeed it won the “budget” spot in well over half of the review sites I consulted. For less than $100 you still get significant power, six speed options, three different mixing styles, and a 3.5-quart bowl that can handle most basic recipes. If you have a large family or otherwise anticipate large batches, it may be worth it to scale up to a larger model, but for small households, kitchens without much space, or that have only the occasional need for a stand mixer, this is an excellent option. Your only color choice here is black, but that’s perfectly classic for many kitchens.
- Size: 8.66 x 13.58 x 11.88 inches (depth, width, height)
- Weight: 11.05 pounds
- Style: Tilt-head
- Capacity: 3.5 quarts
- Power: 300 watts
- Number of settings: 6
- Attachments: Paddle, whisk, dough hook
You’re receiving price alerts for Hamilton Beach 6-speed stand mixer
Same KitchenAid design, same KitchenAid color choices (mostly), but with 40% more volume, 66% more power, and two additional mixing paddles to take your stand mixing functionality up to a professional level. I also like the half-speed setting here for the possibility of gently folding nuts or chips into your batters. The bowl-lift mechanics allows for even greater maneuverability (and far less swearing than with a tilt-head when you accidentally hit the cupboards).
Listen, I don’t make the rules, but this model also hit every single site as your best-bet large capacity or bowl-lift number. A slightly less expensive, 600 Series pro model is also available from KitchenAid if you’re interested in the bowl-lift option but don’t necessarily need the greater volume, and in either case, KitchenAid sells a few refurbished professional models on its site for potential savings.
- Size: 14.63 x 11.31 x 16.5 inches (depth, width, height)
- Weight: 31 pounds
- Style: Bowl-lift
- Capacity: 7 quarts
- Power: 500 watts
- Number of settings: 11
- Attachments: Double-flex edge beater, flat beater, dough hook, pastry beater, whisk, pouring shield; 12 optional attachments including ice cream maker, meat grinder, pasta roller and spiralizer
You’re receiving price alerts for KitchenAid 7-quart bowl-lift stand mixer
This Wolf Gourmet model was second only to KitchenAid in checking all the boxes and garnering mentions in review site best lists. It comes with a hefty price tag — nearly double the cost of our top pick — but you also get almost double the power and significantly more capacity. Wolf is as revered as KitchenAid for craftsmanship and design, and this stand mixer comes in a stainless steel finish making for the easiest cleanup. Unlike any other model on this list, the Wolf stand mixer has an “infinite” speed dial, meaning there aren’t specific speed settings, giving you infinite nuance where speed adjustment is concerned.
- Size: 18 x 11 x 18 inches (depth, width, height)
- Weight: 29.5 pounds
- Style: Bowl-lift
- Capacity: 7 quarts
- Power: 500 watts
- Number of settings: Infinite
- Attachments: Paddle, whisk, dough hook, pouring shield; optional food grinder attachment
When GE unveiled its Smart Mixer at CES 2023, it caught the attention of a few folks in attendance, including CNET’s own Jessica Dolcourt, who deemed this entry into the category a “big deal.” Dolcourt, who was able to both see the Smart Mixer in action and play around with it, was impressed by its many futuristic functions, none of which is more useful than the built-in scale.
GE Profile’s stand mixer stands out amongst the crowd for this, dare I say, genius built-in scale that allows you to quickly measure ingredients with precision right in the bowl. The scale then zeroes out so you can add the next ingredient without having to bust out measuring cups or spoons. We simply adore skipping a step, no matter how small.
Another smart element is the mixer’s auto-sense technology, which works with dozens of programmed recipes from the app to monitor changes in viscosity through motor torque while in use to optimize speed and power for best results when whipping, mixing, emulsifying and such. Simply put, this mixer does a lot of the work for you. It’s also powerful, with 540 watts of oomph, and features a large 7-quart bowl.
- Size: 14 x 11.33 x 17.07 inches (depth, width, height)
- Weight: 22 pounds
- Style: Bowl lift
- Capacity: 7 quarts
- Power: 540 watts
- Number of settings: Dozens, including preprogrammed recipes
- Attachments: Dough hook, wire whisk, beater
Stand mixers compared
|KitchenAid Artisan Series||Cuisinart Precision Master SM-50||Hamilton Beach 6-speed||KitchenAid 7-qt||Wolf Gourmet||GE Profile|
|Size (inches; depth, width, height)||14.1 x 8.7 x 13.9||14.17 x 7.87 x 14.13||8.66 x 13.58 x 11.88||14.63 x 11.31 x 16.5||18 x 11 x 18||14 x 1.33 x 17.07|
Stand mixer buying guide
Types of stand mixers
Stand mixers typically come in two different modes: tilt-head and bowl-lift. Tilt-head stand mixers have a hinge at the back of the model that literally tilts the head back and allows you to easily remove the bowl from the mixer, as well as change the mixing paddle as needed. The purpose of bowl-lift models is the same, but instead of a hinge that tilts the head, two arms are usually located toward the base of the model, with a lever that lifts up the bowl to meet the paddles.
Most average-size stand mixers are tilt-head models, while professional options tend to utilize the bowl lift. With a tilt-head model, it’s important to consider that the height of the model changes when the head is tilted back, meaning that you might have to pull it out from under overhead cupboards in order to accommodate the extra height when in use.
Stand mixer size and capacity
Size-wise, the height requirement of a stand mixer may be the most important consideration when it comes to either the counter space or the storage space to host it, with average models being typically 14 to 15 inches in height. (With another inch or two needed to tilt the head back as required.) Smaller models may save you a couple of inches, and larger professional-grade models can be as tall as 18 inches.
Volume-wise, average stand mixers offer a bowl that is between 4 and 6 quarts. Some smaller models are available that are between 3 and 4 quarts, which is still enough capacity for typical cookie and cake recipes, but may feel crowded for extra large batches or some bread recipes. Professional-grade stand mixers may offer bowl volumes of up to 8 quarts, which can handle many catering-size jobs.
Stand mixer features
Besides the tilt-head and bowl-lift functionality, stand mixers tend to come with several different beaters for different functions: a paddle for typical cake and cookie mixes, a whisk for whipping meringues or cream, and a dough hook that approximates light kneading in how it moves the dough around the bowl. Low-, medium- and high-speed settings are generally expected, with many models offering as many as 10 or 12 speeds to meet your precise needs. Additionally, several models may offer separate-purchase attachments for additional functionality, such as making ice cream or noodles, or grinding meat.
How we evaluated stand mixers
Our list of best stand mixers was aggregated from numerous review sites among models that had the most inclusions, as well as bestselling and top-rated models at major retailers such as Amazon, Williams Sonoma and Crate & Barrel. Of note, and good news for meticulous comparison shoppers, stand mixers were the most consistently ranked kitchen appliance from site to site of any I have previously reviewed.
I researched the stand mixers on this list by analyzing specs and user reviews, diving deep for mentions of persistent issues, and considering the available features and functionality compared to price as a measure of each model’s overall value. I focused primarily on those models that had extremely high user ratings, typically 4.5 and above with at least 1,000 unique ratings. While these were not tested in person in a lab environment, as a culinary school-trained home cook, I am very familiar with the features and functionality of stand mixers, and every stand mixer on this list has been tested by numerous sites for high performance. Additionally, I was able to examine several in person (including one that I own) in order to get a feel for their footprint, weight, design and controls.
Stand mixer FAQs
Is a KitchenAid the best stand mixer?
KitchenAid is certainly the most popular stand mixer and has a decades-long track record of satisfaction from bakers and home chefs alike. While it might be the safest bet, KitchenAid machines are also expensive, with most models costing well over $300. Among our list of best stand mixers, any of these should serve the purpose of consistently handling typical recipes on a regular basis and any of them can be considered a worthwhile investment. The best stand mixer for you is the one that fits your budget, space and lifestyle.
How much does a stand mixer cost?
Expect to spend between $200 and $500 for an average, well-reviewed stand mixer. Very few are priced lower than $100; our budget pick here is pretty close to that mark. Professional grade or splurge-worthy options can cost $1,000 or above. Average models will be worthy investments for most home cooks and their needs. You may want to consider a higher-end model if you have an especially large household, a catering operation or the verve to make artisanal bread at home several times a week.
How do you clean a stand mixer?
The base of a stand mixer can be wiped down with water and a clean dish or paper towel. It’s important to do this thoroughly after each use, as residual flour or batter can build up close to the motor or hinge and inhibit its functionality. The bowl and detachable beaters or paddles of a stand mixer can be washed thoroughly with soap and water. These parts may also be dishwasher-safe; you should check the user manual of your particular model to confirm whether it’s appropriate to put them in the dishwasher.
For more, read CNET’s complete guide to cleaning your stand mixer.
How do I choose a stand mixer?
There are many important considerations when choosing a stand mixer, such as price, space requirement, volume and attachments, and all of these considerations must factor in how often and for what you will use your stand mixer. If you plan to put it to frequent use, I’d advise investing in a sturdy, well-reviewed model, which will better serve you in the long run than opting for a cheaper model. How often you think you will use a stand mixer will dictate whether it’s something you will want to keep out on the counter or something you need to store in a cupboard or pantry when not in use. Either way you’ll need to ensure you have the space available and are able to comfortably move it as needed, as many models are quite heavy.
Most average stand mixer models offer a bowl volume of between 4 and 6 quarts, which is perfect for nonindustrial scaled recipes. Smaller volume models are available, but in those cases that is probably more of a matter of the footprint of the machine if you have a tight space, rather than you anticipate only making half recipes.
Larger models can have a volume of up to 8 quarts, which may be handy if you’re frequently making extra-large batches, though these are typically considered professional models. If you’re going to keep your stand mixer on the counter, color or design might be an important consideration as well. Getting the most use out of your stand mixer may also determine whether it’s important to you to have additional attachments, such as a meat grinder, ice cream maker or pasta roller.
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