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Believe it or not, a capable hand mixer can perform many of the same tasks as a stand mixer—and they don’t take up valuable counter space. Many newer models even come with handy storage cases for attachments so you don’t have to rummage through your utensil drawer looking for them.
“Hand mixers are best at light duty jobs like whipping cream,” says Cindy Fisher who oversees mixer testing for Consumer Reports. “But the best performers can also handle all but the thickest cookie batters and bread dough.”
Below, listed in alphabetical order, are the top five hand mixers from our tests. In our labs, we time how fast a hand mixer can whip heavy cream—the quickest produce firm peaks in three minutes or less. We also judge how well a hand mixer stands up to the tougher challenge of mixing chocolate chip cookie dough.
Cuisinart Power Advantage HM-50
CR’s take: Of the 13 hand mixers in our ratings, the Cuisinart Power Advantage is the only model that aces both our whipping cream and cookie dough mixing tests, earning an Excellent rating in each. Our testers find it easy to use and clean, though it’s a bit noisy. Of course, since you’ll only be using it in short bursts, that may not bother you. It has wire beaters—which are easier to clean than beaters with a center post—and a retractable cord so you can store it neatly. It has five speeds so you can start it on slow without spattering and then rev it up to whipping speed.
KitchenAid Architect KHM7210 7-Speed
CR’s take: Small but mighty, the KitchenAid Architect KHM7210 hand mixer earns an Excellent rating in our cookie dough mixing test, delivering enough power to fold chocolate chips into stiff cookie dough. Testers like this model’s easy-to-clean wire beaters and its separate whisk attachment (great for scrambling eggs), but it doesn’t come with a dough hook like two of the other mixers on this list. It has seven speeds and is one of the quieter mixers we test.
CR’s take: Another KitchenAid to make this list, the 9-speed KitchenAid KHM926 costs a bit more than the other mixers here, but comes with some nice extras: a dough hook, whisk, and liquid blender rods for blending soups and smoothies. It earns an Excellent rating in our whipping cream test and is also capable of powering through cookie dough. Its controls are convenient to use. It’s also easy to clean and quieter than many of the hand mixers we test.
KitchenAid Ultra Power 5-Speed KHM512
CR’s take: The 5-speed KitchenAid Ultra Power KHM512 aces our cookie dough mixing test, earning an Excellent rating. It takes a minute or two longer to whip heavy cream than its brandmate, the KitchenAid KHM926, but is on par with the pricier KitchenAid Architect. It’s a bit noisier than the other two KitchenAids here, though. It comes with easy-to-clean wire beaters, and the controls are a cinch to use. However, this basic model doesn’t come with any extra attachments.
Toastess Delfino DLHM-564
CR’s take: Another champ at whipping heavy cream, the Toastess Delfino DLHM-564 earns an Excellent rating in that test. It does well in our cookie batter test, but not quite as well as some of the other hand mixers here. The beater has center posts, which can be harder to clean. However, our testers find this mixer easy to use overall—the controls are convenient and inserting the beaters is a piece of cake. It comes with a dough hook so you can try your hand at bread. You get a whopping 16 speeds, which is probably more than you need.
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