Breville Mixer vs. KitchenAid Mixer

BY HELEN S. FLETCHER, ON
COPYRIGHT, HELEN S. FLETCHER, 2017. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
ALL PHOTOS BY PASTRIES LIKE A PRO UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

Breville stand mixer with attachmentsThere’s a new stand mixer in the kitchen and its name is the Breville mixer. It’s sleeker, quieter, more powerful and all around a better mixer than the KitchenAid as far as I am concerned and I have been baking professionally for over 30 years.

I never thought I would buy anything but a KitchenAid stand mixer. I remember well first seeing a lift bowl KitchenAid K5A on Julia Child’s TV show. I was just beginning to realize that food was to be my career with the emphasis on baking and pastry. It helped that Julia was able to teach so well – and I devoured every word and every recipe. Not only was she able to bring a whole new food culture to America but she did it in such a way that she was able to make you believe you could do it too. She was my first teacher and she lit a fire inside that still burns today.

At the time there was no internet, no easy way to find information. I finally tracked it down and I remember being horribly upset because it was so expensive and I couldn’t afford it. Shortly thereafter my husband came into a small inheritance which he was happy to share. I used my cream colored K5A until just recently when I finally came to terms with the fact that I had to let it go. I used that mixer more than normal – much, much more than normal and it never ever let me down. I bought an extra bowl, whisk and paddle beater so I wouldn’t have to wash the bowl when two were needed to complete a recipe.

So this time I went on the internet and found a beautiful yellow KitchenAid Pro.Yellow KitchenAid stand mixer I was so excited I ordered a second bowl and thought I was all set. As I unpacked it, I noticed that the dough hook said not to use it above 2. What? That is so slow, there is no way you can knead dough. I called customer service and they practically swore up and down that it works on 2 and that is what they use when they train people.

When I turned it on it was so noisy, we couldn’t talk in the same room. At that point, we packed it back up, returned it and got our money back.

This was particularly sad for me because I loved my original thirty five year old K5A. But the difference was the original KitchenAid K5A was made by the Hobart Corporation. They did then, and do today, make the best and largest mixers for professional bakeries and institutions. When I owned the bakery I had 12, 20, 30/60 and 40/80 quart Hobart mixers.  All but one was bought used and all were great. The original K5A was a miniature replica of the large ones through 1986 when Whirlpool bought the name and styling of the mixer and made KitchenAid its premium brand. Today, there is no relation, other than style, to the original stand mixer that that is so loved by owners.KitchenAid mixer for Breville vs. KitchenAid

Enter Breville mixer,  BEM800XL The parent company of Breville is based in Australia. A 2012 Consumer Reports review titled “Breville unseats stand-mixer champ KitchenAid” touts the advance this mixer has made in the states. During the ensuing years, the Breville Scraper Mixer Pro as they have dubbed it, is slowly making its way into the kitchens of those who love to bake.Sijde view 2 (1 of 1)

But why, what makes this Breville mixer a better mixer? For starters, it is sleek looking. While it comes in many colors in Australia, it is available in silver, red or black in America. It is dye cast and while stable when turned on, it is not as heavy as the KitchenAid. When we photograph for the blog, I remove my mixer and processor to clear the island. I always had to have Mike lower the KitchenAid but I can lower and raise the Breville mixer with no problem.

The Breville mixer has several features that make mixing much easier. It has a LED lit timer that can count up or down as you prefer – perfect for so many mixing tasks. Rather than numbers, there is an LED lit column that is marked with the task you want to achieve – stirring, beating, whipping, etc. – particularly helpful for beginners or those that do not mix often.Timer and LED column for Breville or KitchenAid Stand MixerThe Breville mixer, when running is very quiet. I am assuming that is because the motor is 550 watts as opposed to the KitchenAid which is 450 watts. In addition, it is that wattage that makes it faster to complete tasks.  It also has load sensing sensors which will turn the machine off if it becomes overheated.

The one thing that disappointed me about my K5A was the heavy white plastic coating on the attachments. As a professional, my mixer got a lot of heavy use. The coating on the attachments eventually started to come off. Where did it go? I hope not into the recipe. When I asked them why it was used, I was told that without it, the attachments had to be hand washed. When I saw one of the uncoated paddle, I worried it would give an off taste to citrus additions. Enter the Breville mix again – they have beautiful, shiny uncoated attachments that go into the dishwasher.Two Paddles for Breville or KitchenAid Stand MixerThis machine has a tilt head which gave me some concern for the photography. But so far so good. The head has a button on top that locks and unlocks the head.Tilt back head for Breville or KitchenAid Stand Mixer

The Breville mixer also has a handle on the head that aids in lifting it or moving it as well as a pouring shield.  Here the machine is running so the LEDs and timer are lit.Side view with LEDS lit (1 of 1)The Breville mixer comes with a warning when making bread.  However, in their recipe file on their site,  they have a pizza crust that uses 4 1/2 cups of white whole wheat flour and the usual bread ingredients – yeast, salt, and water   The recipe calls for beating it for 5 to 6 minutes on medium.

So I decided to test the machine for making bread.  I just made a loaf of of my favorite buttermilk bread using 3 3/4 cups flour and 1 1/2 cups liquid as well as yeast, salt, etc.  I mixed it on the lowest speed and then raised it to the bottom of the “light mix” line.  I beat it, using the dough hook, for 4 minutes.  There was no detectable problem and it produced an excellent bread dough.  I am not suggesting you do this.  Loaf of bread made with the Breville mixer

Sliced Bread made with the Breville mixerThe best thing I have found so far is how fast and efficient it is.  I made an angel food cake today to test its ability to beat egg whites and the Breville mixer whipped them so fast and so high I thought they might go over the top of the bowl.

Lastly, this mixer does not walk or hop when it is on high or has a heavier load. It also has a sturdier base. I had to hold my K5A in place or it would walk off the table with a heavy load in it.

Chow has a video that reviews the Breville mixer on YouTube with which I completely disagree. At the end, they try to mix a very heavy bread in the mixer.   They then turn the machine up to high as far as I can acertain and complain about it bouncing all over the table. I’m sure it did but they don’t say any mixer geared towards home use will do the same thing. I don’t know what the credentials of the presenter were, but I’m pretty sure she didn’t have 30 years of professional baking behind her.

The Breville mixer is $299.95. Sur La Table and Williams Sonoma carry it.   I will also be purchasing an extra bowl, beater and whisk.

There are many stand mixers available to the home baker. I’m very excited about my Breville mixer and will keep you advised – good or bad – as I go along.

I knew I liked those Aussies for something more than inspiring my Lamington Torte.

Reviews and other information can be found at:
http://mixer-review.toptenreviews.com/breville-bem800xl-review.html
http://www.thekitchn.com/product-review-breville-5-quar-157677
http://www.brevilleusa.com/stand-mixer.html
http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/news/2012/10/breville-unseats-stand-mixer-champ-kitchenaid-in-our-tests/index.htm

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31 thoughts on “Breville Mixer vs. KitchenAid Mixer

  1. Tonya

    kitchen aid is ok if you don’t need to add any ingredients. I have a old Oster that is wondeful. When adding to the Kitchen Aid you will make a mess not enough space betweeen the bowl and mixer to add the igredients without making a mess.

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Tonya – I agree the tolerance between the attachment and the bowl is small but that is why it beats so well. As I said, there are many mixers and it is just a matter of finding what is right for you.

  2. Ingrid

    Hello Helen,
    I’m getting this Breville mixer tomorrow (lucky me!). We have a model here in Australia with two mixing bowls, one a bit smaller than the other.
    I’d like to know if you have made sourdough bread with it, say for a 750g loaf.

    1. hfletcher Post author

      I saw they had a smaller bowl. I’m confused about why it is smaller. I will be ordering a second bowl of the same size. What is your take on the smaller bowl. If you make the bread, just keep the speed below the middle speed. I think the problem with the bread is using too high a speed. Let me know what happens if you try the sourdough. You will love the mixer.

      1. Ingrid

        I think the smaller bowl will come in handy when whipping egg whites or cream etc as part of a recipe.
        My sourdough bread is already on the go, so I will have to try another time. I believe bakers use speed 1 first, then speed 2 for the kneading in just about all the machines (Kenwood Chef etc). Will let you know.

      2. Pam Heinrich

        I have the one with the two bowls and find I use the smaller one a lot for whipping cream/egg whites and cake batters that are not too dense. It’s a great size to have and super handy.

  3. Maureen Potter

    I bought a Breville 16 cup food processor 2 years ago at Thanksgiving to replace a dead cuisinart that lasted only 7 years with light use. My previous one lasted 28 years..

    Last summer I bought a reconditioned Breville mixer on Amazon.ca. for my condo. I love it and agree that it is better than KA. I gave my original KA to my daughter as it was not happy and got a 6 qt pro. Hate it! The Breville is a dream. Love love love both these products.

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Maureen – My Cuisnart food processor will be the next to be replaced. A pastry chef friend of mine just bought the large Breville processor and swears by it. They make a lot of other appliances – all of which get good marks.

  4. Pam Heinrich

    Hi Helen,

    I’m an Aussie girl who loves baking and I have had the Breville Twin Scraper Pro for just over a year now. I couldn’t be happier. As you have stated, it’s a great machine for everything from egg whites to heavy duty cake mixes and it’s a dream for my pizza dough, although I am gentle on my settings with it. I have never had a KA as my old mixer was a Sunbeam which was quite good but the new Breville whips the Sunbeams butt!!!

    I’m new to your Website but LOVE your recipes and advise. Thank you so much for sharing your wealth of experience with us wanna-be’s.

    Kind Regards, Pam Heinrich

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Pam: So happy to have you. Thanks for your comments on the Breville. I will be in the kitchen today making a variety of recipes and looking forward to using it.

  5. AndreaD

    It looks like Breville has copied Cuisinart, which I use. I love Cuisinart since I went through several Kitchenaids prior. I bought the 5.5 Cuisinart to begin with, then had to go to the biggest one, and can use the dough hook on a high speed.
    The only thing it doesn’t have is the handle on the bowl which I miss. I wouldn’t use a KA again, they seem so flimsy in comparison. The dial for the speeds is smooth and the timer is great.

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Andrea: I’m not sure who copied who. Cuisinart had a design fairly recently that emulated the Kenwood, who did make the Cuisinart for a time. I read that recently Delonghi is making it now. As a former consultant to the original Cuisinart, I can tell you the company has been sold several times. They do not manufacturer their equipment – it’s outsourced. That does not make it bad – or good. The design of the Cuisinart is more identical to the Waring mixer. I have queried Breville to get some answers. Let’s see how they answer. But I agree, all three look similar.

  6. sallybr

    Great review! I just shared on my facebook page…. I live Breville in general and have been flirting with their food processor….

    1. Karenb

      Thanks so much for the review!! My KA5 mixer just broke(won’t beat past Setting 3). It lasted 28 years, so I cannot complain! I never really “loved” it though, and will look into the Breville as a replacement. I like that the 5 Quart Breville’s head tilts back and doesn’t need a lever to lift it up & down.

      I also plan to replace my 12 Cup Cuisinart Food Processor and looked into the Breville 14 Cup. It got Excellent reviews and is preferred over the Cuisinart. Do you have any thought on this food processor or can you recommend a good replacement?

      1. hfletcher Post author

        Hi Karen: A fellow pastry chef just purchased that Breville processor and loves it. My Cuisinart is rather old and doing fine so I’m not looking into replacing it anytime soon, but I most certainly will look at the Breville when I get ready to replace it. I like the 5 quart size as opposed to the 6 and 7 quart. I had a 6 quart at one point and it had bad problems.

  7. Alicia

    Hi Helen,

    I should first admit that I’m totally biased. I love and collect KA mixers. There are definitely quality differences between the models, but I collect only the Artisan, Accolade, and Professional models.

    I teach cooking classes at SLT and use the Breville mixer very often. The quality and construction is impressive and suitable for most home cooks. But it definitely struggles with wobbling and overheating when making larger recipes that require prolonged mixing.

    Breville makes amazing products (and I own several), but I’d love for them to make two levels of mixers. One for the typical home cook and a professional quality model for heavier use.

    Thanks for your great review and enjoy your mixer!

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Alicia – Could you please share with me what you mix in the Breville that causes it to wobble or overheat. I would like to try them myself as I have not had a problem so far. One of the things I like about it is that it will shut itself off if it does overheat.

  8. Manisha

    Hi Helen

    Thank you for the detailed review. I am sure it will help many bakers to buy their stand mixer wisely. We do not get Breville machines here however I bought my first stand mixer on the parameters of motor power and the quality of mixing bowl and attachments. I use Kenwood Chef Titanium, it’s motor power is 1400 watts, more powerful than any kitchen aid machines I saw. Even after getting the professional large mixer I still use it often for all my small recipes. only issue I am facing with it is after sales service. I wish I had considered this point as well. But I have figured out a way for it so it’s ok now.

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Manisha – Glad you could figure out a solution. After sales service can be a headache. Hope all is going well and that your weather is better than ours. High 90’s too many days in a row.

  9. Carolyn

    I had the KA Professional 600 mixer and while I thought it did a great job, it was really loud. When the KA 7 qt mixer came out a couple of years ago, I splurged. It was a great purchase – about 50% quieter, and substantially more powerful.

      1. Carolyn

        Yes, absolutely. I just checked the manual and it still does say to not go above speed 2, but I know I have gone to speed 3. I think it does a good job of kneading. In fact, I did a side by side comparison between dough kneaded by hand with that kneaded in my KA machine and the hand kneaded loaf had a slightly better crumb – I could tell which was which, but no one else in my family could.

        1. hfletcher Post author

          Thanks for getting back to me Carolyn. This is what frustrates me. The older machines could do anything. Now almost all of the newer ones have warnings about breads. Then why include a bread hook? The Breville tells you to mix it, then knead it by hand. Like I’m about to do that. I do what you do, raise it to what would be 3 on the KA and it is fine. I think taking it to the higher end will cause a problem and perhaps that is what they are afraid of. I just watched a video on the Breville on YouTube and here she is, mixing AND kneading bread in it. I agree, there will be a world of difference between kneading by hand and using the machine. I’m a machine girl – glad you are too.

  10. Marianne Ward

    This was a very well written critique. I have been using my Sunbeam stand mixer since 1965 and it’s on it’s last legs. I have not yet given myself permission to purchase a new one given my age. I do bake a lot though I seldom drag out the mixer, usually for angel food, meringues or chiffon cake. I was thinking only about the kitchen aid, but now I will consider the Breville based on what you had to say. One thing that has held me back was the weight of the KA. Lighter is better for me. I live alone. It looks smaller, too. That KA takes up a lot of kitchen real estate. Thank you. Marianne Ward

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Marianne. I used my mother’s Sunbeam before I got my first K5A. She no longer baked and it was the thing to have when you did. You are right – it is lighter and does take up less space. Sur la Table and William Sonoma carry the Breville if you wanted to see one. Good luck with your decision.

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