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Many a wedding gift registry has featured a bread machine that went from its festive, colorful wrapping to a dark, lonely corner under the kitchen sink. If that imagery makes you feel sad for the fate of this inanimate object, well, maybe you should be.
Making homemade bread with one of these clever machines is an easy way to get a custom carbohydrate fix and fill your house with wonderful smells. These modern options don’t require any special culinary talents, and offer a range of features that help make sure your choice will live its best life as the star of your kitchen.
Want a quality, all-around bread maker for an affordable price? This popular bread machine turns out 1.5 to 2-pound loaves with 12 different settings including no-yeast breads (think zucchini or pumpkin) and gluten-free (made with flours like almond, chickpea, or other special blends). Use the machine to prepare dough for make-your-own pizza night with your kids, or surprise friends at brunch with homemade cinnamon-raisin toast. You can put the interior baking pan into the dishwasher, and there is an extra kneading paddle so busy bakers will always have one clean and ready for use. People with gluten sensitivity or celiac disease can also enjoy custom alternatives without having to pay grocery store markups.
This stainless steel model is in the mid-range, price-wise, and is an attractive addition to any amateur chef’s kitchen. In addition to 1.5 and 2-pound loaf sizes, you can program the settings for a 1-pound loaf to minimize waste. Measure out your ingredients before bedtime and set the delay timer on your Cuisinart to mix, knead, and bake while you’re comfortably snoozing. For the perfect snack, you can even use your bread machine to make jam. If you live in an area with frequent short power outages, you’ll value the ability of this machine to remember where in the baking cycle it is for up to 15 minutes after the power goes out, and to resume there when power returns.
Consider this top-of-the-line bread machine if you’ve vowed no low-carb craze will ever stop you from delighting in perfectly browned, crusty loaves. Heating elements on both the bottom and lid of the bread maker promote even baking, and your dough is kneaded with double paddles instead of just one. Get traditionally-shaped rectangular 2-pound loaves at a variety of settings from vegan to gluten-free to multigrain, or customize your own with the memory for repeated use. If you get impatient to dig in, choose the rapid setting and cut the wait time for a fresh loaf down to approximately 2.5 hours.