Our Guide to the Best Hand Mixers
We whipped cream, beat egg whites and made mass amounts of cookie dough to determine the top mixers on the market.
When a task is too small to drag out the stand mixer and too arduous for a whisk, only an electric hand mixer will do. But what actually sets a great one apart from the pack?
Power and speed are obviously important — the whole point of using this machine is so you don’t develop wrist cramp while creaming butter. Special features are fun, as long as they’re functional! And there’s the aesthetics; anything that takes up space in your kitchen might as well look good doing it! But value is worth considering too.
We considered all of these factors during our testing, and no matter what your top requirements are in a mixer, we’re sure the following models are more than up to the job.
When it comes to a hand mixer made for most people, the cost-effective Krups really fires on all cylinders. It comes with an array of color-coded attachments, so you know exactly where they fit into the machine. And while we made use of only the balloon whisk and dual beaters (fixed with nice, silicone tips), we bet the included dough hooks are great if you’re making bread.
Our favorite feature on the Krups is its 10 speeds, the largest range of any model we tested. Intuitive controls make it easy to toggle between each one, as does an LED screen, which clearly informs you what speed you’re on. Plus, it automatically begins every job in "slow start mode" to prevent ingredients from flying out of the bowl.
It also boasts a "turbo" button, which you can press for an extra burst of power and speed. All that muscle made it as good as any model we tried at creaming chilled butter (although it’s always recommended to soften butter first), and it whipped cream in a reasonable 45 seconds, while egg whites reached soft peak in a minute.
Finally, the Krups wasn’t oppressively noisy, and it didn’t send waves of painful vibrations passing through our hands.
Hand mixers don’t tend to have lots of variety when it comes to design. Yet in addition to being sleek and lightweight, instead of bulky and clunky, the KitchenAid comes in a dazzling rainbow of colors: 17 to be exact!
But its beauty isn't only in how this machine looks. This is actually a totally legit mixer, with clearly marked speeds that you can easily navigate between, a button you can use to single-handedly eject the beaters, and a reasonably powerful motor, whipping cream and beating egg whites in less than a minute.
The truth is, kitchen tools with too many bells and whistles can be intimidating to the novice cook or baker. So, rest assured, the Dualit will do precisely what you need it to do, without any confusing or unnecessary attachments, buttons or features getting in the way.
Though it has only four speeds, that in no way indicates a lack of power. The Dualit whipped egg whites to soft peaks in an impressive 30 seconds (without any splashing!) and was even able to fold chocolate chips into our stiff cookie batter. A flat base allows you to set it on end between tasks, and it scores high marks for safety (a retractable cord prevents tangles, and you can only eject the beaters after switching the machine off).
There's a reason the Hamilton Beach is a best-seller on Amazon: It’s less than half the price of the average cost of a mixer! And you're not you’re sacrificing quality.
In addition to rocking a totally respectable six speeds (as well as a QuickBurst button, for that extra hit of power), and a snap-on case for easy storage, it’s actually designed to rest against the curve of a bowl, which means you can set it down between tasks without getting flour and sugar all over your counter.
When you have the need for speed (or a task that requires plenty of horsepower), the Cuisinart has what it takes to whip your cookie dough into submission. Egg whites and whipped cream both clocked in at a breezy 30 seconds. Thank the 225-watt motor and seven speeds for that.
A generous assortment of attachments means this mixer can take on any task. It comes with dual beaters, a balloon whisk, dough hooks and a spatula, although we hardly needed to use the latter — the wires between the beaters and whisk are generously spaced enough that they don’t get clogged up with clumped butter or dough.
How We Tested
After scouring through reputable consumer buying guides, we selected 10 mixers to put to the test. We determined the most-important factors to look for in a top-quality mixer, from how easy the machine was to put together and how clear the manual was to read to the ergonomics of each model (how comfortable it was to hold it our hand), how loud it was (especially on high speeds), and how seamless it was to care for and clean.
If the brand made any special claims — like being able to cream cold butter in seconds — we definitely checked that they actually bore out during testing. We also evaluated each mixer's ability to perform specific, basic cooking tasks, including how quickly and efficiently they were able to make whipped cream, beat egg whites into soft peaks, cream butter and sugar, and make batches of chocolate chip cookie dough.