Hand Mixers

What to look for in a hand mixer

Hand mixers are convenient kitchen accessories that can take a lot of the work out of beating, mixing, blending and whipping ingredients for your culinary creations. With all the makes and models on the market, it's important that you know what to look for in a good hand mixer to select a product that will perform up to your expectations and give you your money's worth.

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Some of the leading brands include Cuisinart hand mixers, KitchenAid hand mixers and Proctor Silex hand mixers, but there are many others. Perform thorough brand research and compare the features of the various models you're considering to find the one that best suits your needs.

Hand Mixer Features to Look For

Hand mixers are available in two basic types: regular dual-blade hand mixers and immersion or wand mixers. Generally speaking, dual-blade hand mixers are more powerful, and immersion mixers are better-suited to finesse tasks and working with soft-textured foods. Some hand mixer models have interchangeable blades that allow you to switch between regular and immersion functions; these are a good choice if you're looking for a versatile product.

Some hand mixers function much like portable blenders by offering a variety of speeds and functions. Experts recommend that you look for hand mixer models that offer at least three different speeds; multiple speeds are a common feature on more elaborate models and premium brands. In terms of blade material, the two main options are plastic and metal. Metal blades are more durable, resist stains and scratches, and tend to offer superior performance when working with thicker or tougher foods.

There are two other metrics you'll encounter when comparing hand mixers: wattage and revolutions per minute (RPM). The wattage of a hand mixer tells you how much power it uses when it operates, but this won't actually tell you a great deal about how powerful it is or how it will perform. The RPM metric is generally considered a much more important factor, as it tells you how quickly the blades are capable of spinning and therefore how well the unit will perform during everyday use.