10 Best Hand Mixers for Every Type of Baker and Budget
Hand mixers are an affordable alternative to stand mixers and much easier to use than mixing everything by hand. They're also way more affordable and take up less space in your kitchen. Contrary to popular belief, hand mixers can successfully complete a variety of mixing tasks just as well as stand mixers—the mixing may just require just a little extra time. With a hand mixer, you can whip, beat, and mix eggs, bread dough, cookie batter, icing, sauces, and even mashed potatoes.
All hand mixers may appear similar at first, but there are several factors you should keep in mind when shopping for one.
"Before buying a hand mixer, you should consider what kind of baker you are," says Alexis de Boschnek, author of "To The Last Bite" and host of Better Homes & Gardens' "Then & Now" cooking series. "If you're a novice that breaks out the hand mixer every few months, you're going to have different needs than an expert who uses it on a weekly basis. Take into account the speed, beater shape, if the mixer comes with extra attachments, and of course, the price."
Erin McDowell, recipe developer and author of "The Book On Pie," finds that "durability is the biggest key" when investing in a hand mixer. "Don't be fooled by tons of extra attachments unless you're certain you'll use them," she says. "A lot of brands add extras (storage bags, cleaning tools, etc.) to make their products stand out, but they often really aren't worth their salt."
Taking into account our expert's input, and more, our top choice is the Cuisinart Power Advantage Nine-Speed Mixer based on its features that allow for versatile use. These include nine speed settings, 220 watts of power, a whisk attachment, snap-on storage case, and two dough hooks. There is also a feature that helps the mixer maintain its speed when you're working with lots of thick batter.
Here are the best hand mixers.
- Best Overall: Cuisinart Power Advantage Nine-Speed Mixer
- Best Beginner: KitchenAid Five-Speed Ultra Power Hand Mixer
- Most Convenient: Cuisinart Power Advantage Five-Speed Hand Mixer
- Best Affordable: Hamilton Beach Six-Speed Hand Mixer
- Best Splurge: Breville Handy Mix Scraper
- Best Lightweight: Black+Decker Lightweight Five-Speed Hand Mixer
- Best for Thick Batter: Black+Decker Helix Performance Premium Hand Mixer
- Best High Power: Braun HM5100 Multi-Mix Hand Mixer
- Best Cordless: KitchenAid Cordless Seven-Speed Hand Mixer
- Best with Retractable Cord: Oster Five-Speed Hand Mixer
What We Recommend
Best Overall: Cuisinart Power Advantage Nine-Speed Mixer
Best Beginner: KitchenAid Five-Speed Ultra Power Hand Mixer
Most Convenient: Cuisinart Power Advantage Five-Speed Hand Mixer
Best Value: Hamilton Beach Six-Speed Hand Mixer
Best Splurge: Breville Handy Mix Scraper
Best Lightweight: Black+Decker Lightweight Five-Speed Hand Mixer
Best for Thick Batter: Black+Decker Helix Performance Premium Hand Mixer
Best High Power: Braun HM5100 Multi-Mix Hand Mixer
Best Cordless: KitchenAid Cordless Seven-Speed Hand Mixer
Best with Retractable Cord: Oster Five-Speed Hand Mixer
The Bottom Line
The Cuisinart Power Advantage Nine-Speed Mixer is our top choice for its nine speed settings; multiple accessories, including a whisk, dough hooks, and snap-on storage case; and a built-in sensor that maintains the speed of your attachments, regardless of how thick your batter is.
What to Know About Hand Mixers Before Shopping
Weight: Hand mixers require strength to control and move around the bowl, so some people may tire quickly from using them, especially when dealing with thick batter. Before you buy, always look at the weight of the mixer. On average, mixers are between 2 and 3 pounds but can go up to more than 5 pounds. If you aren't sure how much weight you'll be able to handle, pick up something in your home that is of equal value, and pretend you are mixing with that. If it's uncomfortable, look for a mixer that is more lightweight.
Power: How much power you'll need is dependent on what type of items you'll be baking. Consider your go-to recipes. If you make your own bread and are frequently whipping up thick batters and doughs, you'll want a mixer with multiple speed settings and a high-powered motor. In fact, some mixers have a special turbo speed setting for particularly cumbersome doughs.
Wattage is a unit that measures the power needed to run your mixer. The higher the wattage, the more power that's needed to run your machine. Most hand mixers have a wattage between 220 and 250. While having a high wattage is important, it's not always an indicator that your product will perform better. For example, in our hands-on testing of the KitchenAid Five-Speed Ultra Power Hand Mixer, which has a lower wattage at 60, it still performed well at mixing thin cake batter as well as thick cookie dough.
Attachments: Many models come with whisks, beaters, and dough hooks to effectively mix any batter. Most models include stainless steel tools, but some beaters have vinyl or rubber coatings for quieter operation that could also limit the potential for scratches to metal bowls. If you don't bake frequently or tend to do basic recipes like cookies, you won't need to get a mixer with dough hooks or whisks. But if you often bake, McDowell is a fan of dough attachments, telling us that she has used hand mixer dough attachments for a variety of recipes, including yeast-raised doughs, cinnamon roll doughs, and brioche.
Your Questions, Answered
How can I ensure my hand mixer lasts a long time?
To make sure your hand mixer lasts for years to come, McDowell suggests getting one that has a small, or preferrably no, exposed vent in front of the machine. "When mixing large quantities of flour (or other ingredients), they can be easily knocked up into the vents, ultimately clogging it and shortening the life of your machine," she explains.
If you have a hand mixer with a larger vent, just make sure to have a steadier hand when mixing ingredients to ensure they don't become airborne and get into the machinery.
Other than that, hand mixers are very easy to maintain. Wipe the body of your mixer with a damp cloth after each use—never submerge it in water. The baking attachments are removable and are dishwasher safe. So long as you make your bakes away from your sink and burners, your mixer should last a long time. If you encounter an issue with your mixer, consult the manufacturer's warranty to see if it covers repairs or a replacement.
How many speeds do I need on my hand mixer?
It all depends on what you normally make, what you plan on making in the future, and your preferred speeds when mixing. As long as the mixer has a low, medium, and a high speed setting, you'll be able to accomplish most baking tasks. Speed settings typically range from one to five (aka low, low-medium, medium, medium-high, and high). Other mixers offer more speed settings, with some featuring upwards of nine.
It's important to know that low settings are great for combining ingredients, especially when mixing wet and dry ingredients together (using a high speed setting for this task will cause ingredients to splatter outside of the bowl). Medium settings work well for mixing cookie dough, thicker cake batters, and frostings as well as creaming butter. High speed settings are best reserved for mashing potatoes, whipping cream, and eggs.
Both deBoschnek and McDowell agree that the more speeds available on your mixer, the better, with both preferring hand mixers with nine speed settings. "If you've ever spent five minutes patiently waiting for butter to cream, you know how precious every minute is," deBoschnek says.
Having several speed settings is also helpful for recipes that require changes in speed. "Recipes like meringue require a low speed to start, then rising to a higher speed to whip to the appropriate peaks," McDowell explains. "The higher the speed, the faster and better the meringue will whip."
I don't have a lot of storage space in my kitchen. Any tips for storing this bulky kitchen machinery?
Always check the size of your desired hand mixer before buying to make sure it fits in the storage space you do have in your kitchen. One way to cut down on space is to buy a hand mixer that has a snap-on storage compartment for its cord and attachments. You can also choose a hand mixer that is cordless or has a retractable cord.
Who We Are
We chose these products by looking at the best hand mixers on the market and narrowing down our picks based on key specifications, including speed settings, accessories, and customer reviews and ratings. Rachel Center, an avid home cook for more than nine years and a product reviews home writer at Dotdash Meredith, spent weeks researching all the components that make a great hand mixer. We also consulted with two regarded recipe developers and cookbook authors, Erin McDowell and Alexis deBoschnek, for their expertise using hand mixers.