Deciding between a spiral or a planetary mixer is dependent on the menu, volume and application.


Purchasing Considerations for Countertop Mixers

Countertop mixer design hasn’t changed much over the years. The function of this equipment and how it’s used centers on the accessories or attachments that perform the mixing. Countertop mixers come standard with basic parts, but each model is different, so operators need to verify what’s included by the manufacturer.

These units are efficient and versatile for mixing and whipping a variety of products, from light creams and meringue to heavy dough and batters that require paddles or dough hooks. Most units offer several mixing speeds for handling different product consistencies.

Application and volume represent primary considerations when purchasing a countertop mixer. The volume, product and mix density will dictate the type of mixer that best suits the application. With heavier product, the mixer runs the risk of rocking back and forth on the table during operation, so proper sizing is important.

Choosing the appropriate size is also important to handle the volume. Countertop mixer capacities include 3, 5, 10, 12 and 20 quarts. For small batches and product like frosting and mixes, chefs typically purchase a 5-quart size, which is the most common.

Operators should consider space allocation with this equipment. Although classified for use on tabletops, larger mixers can be placed on 25-inch stands, which may provide a better working height than 36-inch tables. These units also are commonly specified with casters, so the floor and area around the mixer can be more easily cleaned.

Safety components, such as bowl guards, that prevent hands or utensils from being in the mixer while it is running, are required as the mixer will not operate without this safety component.

For those seeking labor-saving tools, some models offer timers, so operators can set a fixed time and walk away from the job, knowing that the equipment will shut off when mixing is complete.

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