Mixers are very instrumental and constitute a significant part of many kitchens. With the help of hand mixer, it will make you prepare a stress free meal by automating the manual process you would have embarked in – in stirring your food. While mixers are very instrumental to every modern day household and kitchen, the flexibility is somewhat not much pleasing considering the huge power consumption, the cost of owning a mixer as well as the congestion it would bring to your kitchen (for those with small kitchen). The messiah that brings about the immense flexibility in mixers is the hand mixer – the hand mixer, is a handheld mixer which is more portable and affordable. The hand mixer eliminates all the backdrops of the initially stand mixer which was space consuming and mostly very expensive, and wasn’t flexible as possible. As a homeowner, who is considering migrating from the stand mixer to the hand mixer, you would want to know where to start from.
How to Choose the Right Hand Mixer
Choosing the best hand mixer like any other product, would mean a hand mixer that suit your specification. Another question would be what is your specification – what will you be using the hand mixer for and how often. What are your characteristics (are you a single mother, mother with family, mother with kids etc), all these and numerous others are factors that you need to consider when choosing the right hand mixer.
However your specification, there are other major dimensions that you need to use as your parameter in arriving a decision on what best hand mixer you would want to use. For example: power consumption, starting speed, mixing speed, handle, materials, easy to use and clean, as well as the overall construction of the hand mixer. Some other factors that should constitute your decision should be where to buy from – that is, the right vendor and the models. In this article, I will cover all these options and make you understand the nitty-gritty of the hand mixer so you would know which to settle for.
Your characteristics: like any other product, the basic thing that forms your decision on what product and type to purchase is first by considering who the users are. If you are a single mom with probably a grown kid, you would have little to worry about when it comes to the sustainability of the hand mixer. This is same for a bachelor who lives alone but contrary to a home with kids, nanny and the likes – many hand would be on the mixer and would require a product with less aesthetics and more of a hard, and sustainable materials, including the safe condition of the material that constitute such product. This is what happens in real life situation. For example, a single mother or a bachelor can carefully use a metallic and aesthetically pleasing hand mixer which may not be a suitable decision for a home with kids as children safety would be the priority. These may just be theories but they are really great considerations however, your characteristics is subjective to you.
Power consumption: every human wants to eliminate cost as necessary as possible and so you would want to eliminate cost as well. On the average, a hand mixer consume between 200 and 250 watts. This is still in relation to your specification – if you are a regular cook, you should consider a hand mixer of 300 watt – this of course may be waste of resources for a typical bachelor who is not a regular cook (you would be paying the light bill of the extra 50 watt that you would have saved if you had gone for a 200 or 250 watt).
Starting speed: every mechanical device which uses a motor, should have a progressive speed from 0 to its peak. This means any device that jump speed may not be a good device. A good hand mixer should start same that is, from 0 min and 3 max.
Mixing Speed: a mixer with greater mixing speed would be a preferred one as it will further meets its objective of unnecessary elimination of waiting time. A normal hand mixer should have a speed range from 5 minimum and 9 maximum.
Handle: a hand mixer should have a suitable handle which makes it flexible and easy to use. A good hand mixer should have a handle with friction which will make the grip more engrossed as opposed to a frictionless handle that may make the mixer slip off your hand which may result to a kitchen accident. This should be part of your consideration when you want to buy a hand mixer.
Overall construction: the way a particular mixer is constructed can affect its usage. For example, there are some mixers that have jointed seams around the bottom where the beaters are located – such mixers are not a very suitable one for household, reason being that the jointed seams at the bottom have the capacity to retain particles of your mixtures which overtime would result in a quick wear-out of such mixer. Since it will not make any meaningful sense buying what you would regret, the best option would be to check for other best hand mixer that has a smooth running seams.
Easy to Clean: a good mixer should be very easy to clean for it to meet its objective of elimination of idle time. Regarding the example of the jointed seams ate the bottom, such mixer would be very difficult to clean as the retained particles will overtime forms part of the mixer and would be tantamount to a quick wear out.
Top ten brand of Hand Mixer
Haven considered what you should look out for in order to get the best hand mixer, another consideration would be the major and outstanding vendors of hand mixers.
1. Kitchen Aid 5-Speed Ultra Power Hand Mixer
On the top of my list is the kitchen Aid Mixer, this is one of the most prominent brand of mixer on the market, their mixers comes in variety of colors and speed – this brand has varieties of colors from crystal blue, cranberry, boysenberry, empire red, green apple, etc. They also have mixers of different speed from 5 to 9 speed. Their mixer can be used to mix ingredients like nuts, and heavy creams etc. This brand has been known for mixer so you can take a look at variety of their product as well as more information about their profile from the amazon link above.
2. Cuisinart Hand Mixer with Storage Case
The second recommended brand of mixers is the Cuisinart Mixer. All brands comes with their uniqueness and differentiation so is the Cuisinart. This brand offers a dynamic set of responsive mixer, for example, this mixer comes with 220 watt more and automatic feedback with a simple on and off button, and a one touch speed control – with nine speed options. This mixer has a starting speed of three (if you remember above, I state that a good mixer should have a starting speed of 0 minimum and 3 maximum). Also in this brand, you will be given a three (3) year warranty on any of their mixer you purchase. Also see their amazon page for reviews and first-hand information about their different offerings.
3. Procter Silex
Procter Silex is also a well-known brand when it comes to mixer. This brand offers its own unique mixer, with their five speed easy mix mixer, you would feel good with their offering as it comes with the following uniqueness. It has a bowl rest feature, five speed, beater eject, low power consumption of about 100 watts. One of their basic differentiation is the power – with a mixer that consumes 100 watts of energy, which should be a very good economic but effective tool that should be part of your kitchen. See also their page on Amazon for more details.
4. Bodum Bistro
Bodum Bistro ranks the seventh brand of the mixers available on the market. Like others, their Bodum Bistro Electric 5 Speed mixer comes with a three interchangeable mixing attachments which allows you to mix wet and dry ingredients as well as dough. This mixer also comes with a relatively low power consumption of 170 watts motor with an average speed of 5. It also provides for easy cleaning with its built in hidden cord storage with fold out hand crank. With their rubber like mixer, it would be a good one for family with kids. They also offer a 2 year warranty on their mixer – you can as well see their amazon page for other details and how to purchase one.
5. Sunbeam Mixmaster
Sunbeam is also one of the major providers of mixer. Their Sunbeam retractable Cord Mixer comes with its own differentiation. The shape of the mixer is more like the everyday jug you use in your home, and this will ease you the stress of learning a new handle. Their mixer also come with a 220 watt power consumption with a relatively high speed of six including a retractable cord for easy storage with soft gripping handle. See their page on amazon for more details and purchasing information.
Brands are for satisfaction while product meet your needs – so the saying. The Warning brands offers its own unique product differentiation for suitable consumers undoubtedly. Their warning 10 inches medium duty blender, comes in stainless form (considering the specification criterion, this would be suitable for bachelors and single mothers) for safety reasons. This blender is relatively out of the flexibility the mixer offers because it’s relatively big hence would occupy space but will meet all your bulk and many mixing needs – see their amazon page for more information about this brand.
Oster is also one of the major brands of mixer, this brand offers its own unique best mixer with the following specifications. 250 watt motor power consumption with a clear and clean start speed of about 2 to 3 which will be very suitable for your mixing as it will curtail splashing. It also come with an awesome speed up to 6 speed which can be switched adjustable. It has a retractable cord for easy storage, and a heel rest to add ingredients while mixing.
8. Hamilton Beach
The Hamilton Beach mixer comes with its own differentiation as well. It’s a very portable mixer. Their Hamilton Beach personal single, looks more like a jug with suitable resting. This mixer is great and suitable for fruits, ice drinks, shakes etc. It has a compatible storage with a cord wrap around the base for easy storage.
9. Dualit Hand Mixer
Dualit Mixer comes with its great looking end product however with a very high power consumption capacity and a contrary low speed of four (4). It has an effortless release valve system and a beat ejector. If you are an aesthetics lover, I think this is the brand best mixer for you.
10. Black & Decker
Black & Decker is also an outstanding brand of mixer, their Decker Mixer comes with a 240 watts peak power with an adjustable six (6) speed, professional attachments, lightweight with great Ergo dynamic design including a bowl and heel rest with traditional storage case. See their page on Amazon for details on their brand offerings.
With the above description of each brands of the mixer, it is possible to say that you may still remain undecided as to which one would meet your need apart from your specification and the brand. Below is a summary of the major types of mixers.
Types of Hand Mixers
Mixers come in different type base on their functionality. That is, each type is differentiated base on what it does and what it cannot do. Another way to differentiate mixers is to categorize according to their source of power. While the above described brands are mostly electric, there are still some mixers that source it power for manual energy exertion.
An example of mixer that source its power from manual exertion of energy as source of power is the old fashioned eggbeater. The old-fashioned egg beater, is not electrically powered but powered mechanically through the exertion of force and requires a manual hand turning in order to beat the eggs or other ingredients. If you are an ad-hoc traveler, who would not want to pay an extra bill for your place of assignment, this mixer might just be a best fit for you.
Another way to differentiate a type of mixer is, those which source their power from electricity. A major example of them are the mixer and the hand blender.
The major difference between these two portable electronic mixers is in the number of blades – which is a major factor to its usefulness. Most mixers have two blades that spin, with various speed settings for responsive accelerations. These blades are often customize to be removable for easy washing. On the other hand, blender often come with only one spinning blade which is useful for its own way but not as the mixer.
Of the two, the mixer has been in more demand that the blender due to its usefulness. The two blade mixer is more common as it blend mixtures better than the one spinning blade mixer.
Mixers blade comes in different forms and types, while the mostly used one which is the mixer comes with metallic blade, blenders majorly come with heavy duty plastic blades. It is obvious that metallic blades will retain its usefulness in many circumstance like when mixing a very hot content. Also can be custom made easily to provide for aeration in the process of mixing – this of which will be absorbed by plastic and could lead to melting.
One of the recent addition to mixer which would form a major type is the cordless mixer. The cordless mixer shares similar characteristics with the blender but the difference is that: it can be charged and be used anywhere, and at any time. This makes it a stress free use when compared to the annoying cord mixers, nevertheless the mixer still prove its usefulness higher than all other type of mixers.
What should be considered before buying a Hand Mixer?
Similar to your specification, there are some other consideration that should be cleared before buying a mixer and before you would say you’ve bought your best mixer. Let me take you through some possible things that you should consider before buying your best mixer.
Firstly, why do you need a mixer, this should be your first consideration. Let me take a look at some possible question that you should ask yourself as it will form your decision to make a purchase. Are you a baker? Do you like to beat up pieces, and cakes from scratch? Are you the type who loves homemade bread? The last time you ate a boxed cake mix which you complained about, are you yet to consider trying something else – like making it yourself? What is your best kind of food and how do you think you can make them yourself. These and numerous others would be a fundamental question that should spur your curiosity in order to shape your consideration for a mixer.
Now that you have all the above questions at your finger tip, what then should be the next step? Would you want to go get your best mixer? Wait, yet a moment, are you already a baker? Would you love to do more baking, like in larger volumes? Ok, if you do a lot of home baking then, getting your best mixer would be a one off decision for your kitchen need. The one that will be good for you will be a relatively one with higher watt like the Oster Mixer analyzed above – this will be a good fit for your home baking need.
Secondly, if you are the type that make cookies, bread and cakes, you should note that many mixers with motor of 100 to 200 watt are mainly for relatively soft whipping and not for massive and thick though whipping. If you will be making cookies, lots of bread and cakes which requires massive mixtures, you would need to make do with the stand mixer as oppose to the mixer. Reason is because the stand mixer is made to contain such specification, and that is why most of their motor runs above 250 watt up to 525 watts.
Thirdly, if you are the type that prefer convenience alongside any product, then you would need to consider going for a mixer with extra features. Example is the cordless mixer with a pouring shield and wire whisk which will give you your desired convenience as possible.
Following the second deliberation, if you are the one that have a small kitchen and you still need to make bread and cookies, you may decide to go for a mixer with higher motor watt which will still serve you as similar to the stand mixer.
Now that you have exhausted all you specification, you have seen the major brands, and as well as your deliberation, you have come up with the one that will suit your need – you also need to know how a mixer is used for efficiency.
Usage of a Hand Mixer
By this time of reading this book, you should already be fully groomed on what a mixer is used for – so in this part I will not talk more on the dough, whipping, and the likes, rather I will take a look at the step by step of how you can use and maintain your mixer, because I guess by this time you already have bought one.
1). you should read the manual that comes with your hand mixer
Like any other product – a manual is a blueprint of what such product does and how it does it. This is a great step towards ensuring a good use of your mixer. This is so important than browsing for any usage anywhere reason being that every machine has its own uniqueness, and only the manufacturer knows the best configuration for their machine. So reading the manual would just have to save you from unnecessary unforeseen circumstance and panic.
2). Do not expose the machine to water
Most mixers are made of steels and they are not meant to be dip into water so by all means, you should avoid exposing its cord or any part as will be contained in your manual to water.
3). Understand Parts of the Mixer
The major part that any user of a mixer should be aware of, and should be convenient about are majorly four. They are: the on/off button, power button, mixer body button and bowl rest button. These parts should be understood and memorize by a user for safety and efficient usage.
4). Do not Move the Hand Mixer Unnecessarily
For you to enjoy the longevity of your mixer, you should avoid moving them unnecessarily reason is simple, when things are often displaced from one place to the other overtime can affect such thing, and so it is with the mixer. You should try to keep it in a fixed spot in your kitchen where you can access it any time you have need for it.
5). Store it in a Safe Place after Use
Your mixer should be stored with care especially in a home with kid. If you remember in the “specification,” I mentioned this and it should be treated with caution as failure could cause a serious injury and damage your mixer.
6). Get accustomed with the Attachments
Depending on the type of brand and type of heater you settle for, they come with various attachment depending on the types. On a general note, attachment such as: Dough hooks, Single Whisks, Straight Wire beaters, and Flat beaters should part of your accessories. If you can’t find any from your package, you may consider buying them separately as they are all important for your mixing needs.
7). Take good note of your Bowl Rest Option
This option should be taken note of, and should not be used while the mixer is working as it will brunt your mixer.
8). Using the Hand Mixer
Attaching Accessories: the first step in using your mixer is to attach necessary accessories. In doing this, your mixer should be off and unplugged, and the speed should be at zero point.
Placing the beater: the second step in the process of using your hand mixer, is to place the beater in the bowl. You should note that the attachment precede this step and should be done with carefulness – because once your mixer is put on, the beater rotate as fast as possible, so, if it wasn’t fixed properly, it may cause accident.
Control the Speed: the third step after you have place the beater into the bowl is to control the speed. You should have a progressive speed that initialize at 0 min and 3max then progress to your desired speed.
Return the Speed: once you are satisfied with the level of your mixture, you may want to end the process by returning the accelerating speed down to its initial level which is 0.
Unplug from Socket: once you have reduced the speed, the next step to termination of the mixing process would be to eject the beater from the mixer. For this step, you should always refer to your manual as different mixer comes with custom specifications.
Clean it: once you have successfully un-mounted the beater from your mixer, the next step would be to clean it. This should not be taken in any way for granted as you may risk the durability of your mixer when they are not properly cleaned. When cleaning, you should use hot soapy water then wipe the body of the mixer using a wet cloth.
Dry it: once successfully cleaned, the next step would be to dry it so the moist doesn’t form rust on the body of the mixer. Ensure that any form of moisture escape from the mixer then store in a safe place that will be out of reach of children.
Hand Mixer is a very great tool that should be part of every kitchen need. Mixer functions like the stand mixer but the difference is in the added advantage that comes with the mixer. The hand mixer is more flexible, uses less power consumption, can be moved easily, occupies lesser space and is affordable as opposed to the stand mixer.
A hand mixer is suitable for people who love homemade baking and would want to save time as much as possible while making them. Unlike the manual egg beater, the hand mixer is more custom friendly and time saving for your daily mixing needs.
Among other distinctive benefit or reasons why you should consider going for a mixer than a stand mixer is the portability it offers. For your next holiday, this will be a great tool to help you dough your nuts and mixtures for your custom made bread and chips.
In a nut shell, a hand mixer is a portable but great tool that would suit your custom need for baking, and for other mixing. See each of the Amazon link below each brands so you could get yourself more acquainted and more informed about your next mixer.