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Updated May 2, 2023 8:13 AM

Whether you’re a budding baker or an experienced enthusiast, a stand mixer is a must-have in your kitchen. Stand mixers have evolved over the years from burdensome appliances used solely for mixing dough to multi-use devices with attachments to make everything from pasta to ice cream. The best stand mixers not only look great displayed on your kitchen counter, but they are highly functional pieces of equipment that seriously cut down the amount of time it takes to make a cake or whip up a batch of whipped cream. 

A great stand mixer can be a hefty investment, so it’s important to do your research before you bite the bullet. We compiled a list of the best stand mixers in every category so you can find one that your inner baker (and your wallet) will enjoy for years. 

How we selected the best stand mixers 

There are more than a baker’s dozen stand mixers worth considering, and the search can feel exhausting and overwhelming. You want to ensure you’re getting the best value for your dollar, but you also don’t want your stand mixer to die on you after just a couple of years. 

We researched the highest-rated stand mixers available in a variety of price ranges and designs to come up with our list of the best stand mixers in six distinct categories. We considered capacity, size, bulkiness, price, design, color options, versatility, and durability when making our list. Finally, we did hands-on testing with some models to determine whether their performance was up to snuff. Whether your top priority is affordability, aesthetics, or function, we have a recommendation for you.

The best stand mixers: Reviews & Recommendations

The best stand mixers should save you time and prevent hand cramps in the kitchen. They should be simple to use for novices, but powerful enough for pros. After carefully researching and testing a bevy of stand mixers, we’ve slotted them into easy-to-understand categories to help you find the best one for your needs.

Best overall: KitchenAid Artisan Series 5-Quart Tilt-Head Stand Mixer

KitchenAid

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Why it made the cut: The longtime leader in stand mixers delivers a high-quality, long-lasting appliance in a variety of stylish colors.

Specs

  • Accessories included: coated flat beater, coated dough hook, 6-wire wire whip, pouring shield
  • Capacity: 5 Quarts
  • Dimensions: 14.3 x 9.3 x 14 inches (LxWxH)
  • Weight: 26 pounds

Pros

  • 10 speeds
  • Ample color options
  • Ability to transform the mixer into different kitchen tools
  • Large 5-quart capacity bowl

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Heavy and bulky

KitchenAid is synonymous with “stand mixer,” and there’s a good reason for it. The original stand mixer back in 1919, KitchenAid changed the game for home bakers everywhere by automating the manual, labor-intensive processes of baking. The company has maintained many of its original values including mixers that last for decades if properly cared for. 

The Artisan Series mixer features 10 speeds for every level from mixing to kneading. The 5-quart stainless steel bowl has the capacity for up to 9 dozen cookies at once. The paddle rotates in a 59-point pattern (called a planetary pattern) that allows it to cover the entire bowl for complete integration. The tilt-head design makes it easy to add ingredients and clean the bowl and attachments. The bowl is dishwasher-safe, and the comfort handle allows for ease of use that some older models lacked. Another perk is the rainbow of colors available: no matter what your style or wallpaper color is, you’ll be able to find a KitchenAid mixer to match. 

The innovative hub design allows for 10 different attachments, making your Artisan Series mixer an all-in-one kitchen assistant. From a pasta cutter to a veggie noodle spiralizer, these additions will make your life easier in the kitchen from dinner to dessert. The Artisan Series mixer clocks in at a whopping 26 pounds, and it’s larger than some other options, which is important to note if space is a concern.

Best for professionals: Wolf Gourmet High-Performance Stand Mixer

Brandt Ranj

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Why it made the cut: The built quality and performance of Wolf Gourmet’s Stand Mixer cannot be bested, and it’s a must-have if you’re a daily baker.

Specs

  • Accessories included: coated flat beater, coated dough hook, 6-wire wire whip, pouring shield
  • Capacity: 7 Quarts
  • Dimensions: 17 x 10.5 x 17.63 inches (LxWxH)
  • Weight: 35.6 pounds

Pros

  • Durable build quality
  • Rock solid performance with all recipes
  • Top-notch design

Cons

  • Price

Let’s be clear: High-Performance Stand Mixer is the best-looking, highest-performing, most durable option on the market today, and nothing comes close. We’ll be honest, this is a serious piece of kitchen equipment that will look a little intimidating on a kitchen counter. It’s the largest stand mixer—in size, weight, and capacity—that we’re recommending, so you’ll need a fair amount of space to accommodate it. That said, the larger size allowed Wolf Gourmet to use bigger, higher-powered components, which made a big difference in our tests.

We used this mixer to make bread dough, cookie dough, whipped cream, cake batter, and everything in between. In each case, the recipes we made turned out flawlessly, and we began to push our luck by making double, triple, or quadruple batches of certain ones to push the mixer to its limit. It never caved—its motor never strained, the attachments never bent, and the mixer never shook around violently even when bread dough was being knocked against the sides of its bowl.

For such a luxe piece of equipment, Wolf Gourmet made its stand mixer extremely simple to use. There’s a single red dial with speed settings between one and 10 with half intervals denoted with a dot. The mixer’s bowl fits into a slot at the bottom, then gets raised when you turn it clockwise to be closer to the attachment. When your recipe looks ready, you turn the knob to 0, turn the bowl counterclockwise, detach your attachment, and pull the bowl away.

Every piece of equipment that comes with this stand mixer, from the mixer itself to its accompanying bowl and attachments, is extremely well made. There were no signs of damage after months of baking, and each attachment was easy to clean either by hand or in a machine. Wolf Gourmet’s High-Performance Stand Mixer would be the centerpiece of any home baker’s kitchen, but it’s not perfect.

We’ve decided to name this stand mixer the best choice for professionals because it costs nearly $1,000, which puts it out of reach for most home chefs. You’re absolutely getting what you’re paying for—this is an appliance that should last a lifetime (or more if you pass it down to someone else)—but it’s a big up-front investment. That said, if you’re an avid home baker who wants the stand mixer, this is the obvious choice.

Best for small kitchens: KitchenAid Artisan Mini Series Tilt-Head Stand Mixer, 3.5 Quart

KitchenAid

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Why it made the cut: The compact version of the classic KitchenAid mixer is cheaper and lighter.

Specs

  • Accessories included: flex edge beater, coated dough hook, and 6-wire whisk
  • Capacity: 3.5 Quarts
  • Dimensions: 14.3 x 9.3 x 14 inches (LxWxH)
  • Weight:18 pounds

Pros

  • Lower price than the original KitchenAid
  • Smaller footprint on your counter
  • Lighter weight at 18 pounds
  • Same durability and high performance as the original

Cons

  • Small capacity bowl
  • No splatter shield

You want the quality and durability of the KitchenAid mixer, but you can’t fit it in your small kitchen. The KitchenAid Artisan mixer comes with all the bells and whistles of the original, at a 25% lighter weight while taking up 20% less space on your counter—meaning you don’t have to choose between your stand mixer and your microwave

Just like the original, the Artisan Mini Series features 10 speeds from a light knead to a brisk whip, with a powerful, 250-watt motor. The mixer also includes the iconic tilt-head design for easy access and a comfort handle on the dishwasher-safe stainless steel bowl. The mixer provides the same opportunity to use any of the 10 optional hub-powered attachments. The Artisan Mini comes in several colors, including honeydew green and aqua sky blue, so you can get creative with your kitchen style. 

It’s slightly more affordable than its bigger sibling, though still pricey when compared to other options on the market. It’s a reliable, durable choice for those with limited space who don’t need a large-capacity mixer. At 18 pounds, it’s still rather heavy, but much lighter than the original. 

Best style and design: Smeg 1950s Retro Style Stand Mixer

Smeg

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Why it made the cut: Stylist and powerful stand mixer for those who pride themselves on sleek decor.

Specs

  • Accessories included: steel wire whisk, flat beater, dough hook, pouring shield
  • Capacity: 5 Quarts
  • Dimensions: 15.75 x 8.75 x 14.9 inches (LxWxH)
  • Weight: 19 pounds

Pros

  • Sleek, retro design in several colors
  • High wattage with more power
  • Large capacity bowl
  • Non-stick accessories

Cons

  • Expensive
  • No optional add-on accessories

Folks who believe that style comes first can’t go wrong with a Smeg stand mixer. The attractive retro design comes in several neutral and pastel colors, including pink, red, blue, and green. The stylish design comes at a high price point, but the impressive features don’t disappoint, either. 

With a 600-watt motor, it’s also the most powerful mixer on our list, making it a better choice if you’re frequently making things like stiff bread doughs. It features a planetary mixing movement that makes for a smooth, complete combination of ingredients. The 10 variable speeds give KitchenAid a run for its money when it comes to versatility. A large-capacity stainless steel bowl can hold up to 5 quarts for bigger baking projects. With a tilt-head design and several different accessories, this stand mixer provides agility in the kitchen. 

Additionally, the accessories come with an all-new coating to make them non-stick and easy to clean. On top of that, they’re also dishwasher safe. If you can swing the cost, the Smeg stand mixer will not only look great in your kitchen, but it will put in the work as a solid stand mixer with a long life expectancy. 

Best for bread: Kenmore Elite Ovation 5-Qt. Stand Mixer

Kenmore

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Why it made the cut: Kenmore’s innovative stand mixer design prevents flour from flying, which is a big boon for bread bakers.

Specs

  • Accessories included: steel wire whisk, flat beater, dough hook, egg separator, grater
  • Capacity: 5 quarts
  • Dimensions: 14.75 x 13 x 9.5 inches (LxWxH)
  • Weight: 30 pounds

Pros

  • 360-degree splash guard prevents messes
  • Pour-in top design actually works well
  • Relatively compact

Cons

  • Shakes under a heavy load

Bread is one of the deepest categories in all of baking, which is ironic considering the core of many recipes is a combination of four simple ingredients: flour, water, yeast, and salt. Kenmore’s Elite Ovation is the right tool for bread baking because its innovative design makes dough-making less messy. Many of our stand mixer recipes come with a plastic guard, which prevents dry ingredients from flying everywhere as they’re first combined with wet ones, but Kenmore went a step further.

A removable splash guard fitted into the top of the mixer fits perfectly on top of the mixer’s bowl to create an enclosed environment. There’s a hole open at the top, which allows you to pour ingredients into the mixer’s bowl while it’s working, but we’ve never had dry ingredients fly out of it during our tests. This was true whether we were making banana bread—an admittedly wet dough made with the paddle attachment—hamburger buns, a standard loaf of white bread, or even fresh pasta dough.

The ability to pour extra liquid or flour in through the top of the mixer as it was working was a huge help. We could course-correct recipes on the fly without wasting time turning the machine off and on again. Amateur bakers who are scared of making a mess will appreciate this as much as pros who’ve had the unfortunate experience of getting a face full of flour at the start of bread baking.

Our sole complaint with the Elite Ovation is that it’ll shake if you’re mixing a thick dough at high speeds. If you have it set on a kitchen island, it may rattle your other kitchen tools and appliances. This isn’t a dealbreaker by any means, just something to keep in mind if you’re not going to keep your stand mixer on a solid countertop. This wasn’t an issue when we used this mixer to make thinner doughs or batter, but bread bakers should be aware.

Best budget: Cuisinart SM-50BC 5.5-Quart Stand Mixer

Brandt Ranj

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Why it made the cut: Cuisinart’s stand mixer offers many of the same features as our premium picks at a far lower cost.

Specs

  • Accessories included: steel wire whisk, flat beater, dough hook, pouring shield
  • Capacity: 5.5 quarts
  • Dimensions: 15.75 x 8.75 x 14.9 inches (LxWxH)
  • Weight: 19 pounds

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Supports lots of accessories
  • Price

Cons

  • Slightly worse look and feel

The biggest impediment for many bakers who want to go from a hand mixer to stand mixer is cost, but this is one of the few appliances where it pays to spend more money. Stand mixers are complicated machines with powerful motors, so getting an extremely inexpensive one means running the risk of having it break down after a couple of years. If you’re budget conscious but still want a stand mixer that’ll go the distance, your best bet is Cuisinart’s SM-50BC, which can be had for well under $200.

In our tests, the SM-50BC handled typical recipes like chocolate chip cookie dough as well as the more premium picks we’re recommending. It also had some little creature comforts, like making a clicking sound when the mixer’s head was tilted all the way up. Other little features, like how easy its knob was to turn, also stood out. There was definitely a little hit to the overall look and feel of this stand mixer compared to our recommendations, but not in a way that hurt its performance.

For common recipes—cookie dough, cake batter, whipped cream—this stand mixer will offer similar results to one that costs roughly double the price. If you’re looking for a way to cut down your cooking time with those recipes while adding some more complicated ones into your repertoire over time, this stand mixer will help guide you through that journey.

Speaking of journeys, we only used this stand mixer with the included attachments, but we’re pleased by the fact that Cuisinart is expanding its functionality with a wide assortment of accessories. This includes everything from a pasta extruder to a meat grinder. It’s worth noting that these accessories are also a lot less expensive than the ones available for a KitchenAid mixer.

If you’re looking for an entry-level stand mixer to take your baking to the next level, Cuisinart SM-50BC 5.5-Quart Stand Mixer should be the first one to consider.

What to consider when shopping for the best stand mixers

Before you decide on a stand mixer, you’ll need to decide what you actually want to use it for. A basic stand mixer will mix up things like cookie dough, cake batter, and whipped cream. But, some stand mixers are equipped to work with accessories to make things like burgers, pasta, and ice cream. It’s also important to consider how often you’ll use it. Many stand mixers are built to last a lifetime, but those typically come with a higher price tag. 

When choosing a stand mixer for your kitchen, keep in mind your counter space. These machines are typically heavy and a bit bulky, so size may be a consideration for apartment dwellers. Even if you have space to store it, moving it in and out of a cabinet can be a hassle if it’s too heavy. 

Here are some of the most prudent questions to ask yourself as you hunt for your ideal stand mixer: 

Attachments and accessories

If the idea of making pasta from scratch sounds like more effort than it’s worth, then you probably don’t need to worry about getting a stand mixer that allows for all kinds of fancy attachments. A basic stand mixer will meet all of your needs as a baking companion, including whipping, mixing, kneading, and creaming. If you’re looking for an all-in-one kitchen assistant, spring for a stand mixer that has the ability to add on cool accessories. Just make sure to factor the cost of those extra gadgets into your budget. 

Capacity

Stand mixers come in various sizes, so it’s worth considering what kind of capacity you want yours to have. If you’re a professional baker who will be whipping up large batches of batter, cream, and dough every weekend, a 3-quart mixing bowl might not cut it. Working in small batches can get frustrating if you’re in a time crunch and have a lot of work ahead of you. Alternatively, if you’re a hobby baker who whips up a few dozen cookies once a year for the holidays, a huge bowl and paddle may be a hindrance.

Design and footprint

Between your rice cooker, air fryer, toaster, and blender, your kitchen counter might be getting a bit crowded. Consider where you’re going to store your stand mixer before you go for a large-batch mixer. Many folks opt to display their stand mixer on the counter for aesthetic purposes, and because that sucker can be heavy to lug out every time you need it. If counter space is an issue, cabinet or pantry storage is another option. Luckily, there are some great compact options for those who live in close quarters. Some of the options on this list weigh more than 25 pounds and stand well over a foot high. 

FAQs

Q: Which stand mixer do professional chefs use?

The KitchenAid Professional Series stand mixers are popular among professional bakers and chefs. The Artisan Series mixer is great for hobby bakers, but the pros tend to go for a stand mixer with an even higher capacity. The KitchenAid Professional 600 has a 6-quart capacity and the KitchenAid ProLine and commercial mixers have 7-and-8-quart capacities, respectively.

Q: Does wattage matter in stand mixers?

Wattage essentially translates to power, and how much power your stand mixer will use while it operates. So a stand mixer with higher wattage should be able to do the job of a lower-wattage mixer much faster. If you ran a 300-watt mixer and 600-watt mixer for the same amount of time. A 250-watt stand mixer will perform well with most doughs and batters. Anything more than that would only be helpful for things like super-stiff bread doughs. 

Q: Which is better: hand mixers or stand mixers?

It depends what your priorities are. Stand mixers will be able to handle thicker doughs and take less of your energy to operate. You can get larger jobs done a lot faster with a stand mixer. Hand mixers are great if space is an issue in your kitchen, or if you are an occasional baker who only makes small batches anyway.

Q: How long do KitchenAid stand mixers last?

KitchenAid stand mixers have a full warranty of one year, but many customers report that their mixers last 10-25 years, depending on how frequently they use them and how they care for them. 

Q: How much do stand mixers cost?

Stand mixers can cost between $200-$1,000, depending if they’re made for home use or industrial purposes.

A final word on the best stand mixers

Whether you’re an occasional baker or an aspiring professional, the best stand mixer will make a huge difference in your kitchen. With proper care, these versatile devices can pump out cakes, cookies, bread, pasta, and more for decades to come.

Why trust us

Popular Science started writing about technology more than 150 years ago. There was no such thing as “gadget writing” when we published our first issue in 1872, but if there was, our mission to demystify the world of innovation for everyday readers means we would have been all over it. Here in the present, PopSci is fully committed to helping readers navigate the increasingly intimidating array of devices on the market right now.

Our writers and editors have combined decades of experience covering and reviewing consumer electronics. We each have our own obsessive specialties—from high-end audio to video games to cameras and beyond—but when we’re reviewing devices outside of our immediate wheelhouses, we do our best to seek out trustworthy voices and opinions to help guide people to the very best recommendations. We know we don’t know everything, but we’re excited to live through the analysis paralysis that internet shopping can spur so readers don’t have to.