Choosing a Commercial Mixer

Large commercial mixers with an electric lift feature will offer the most comfortable dough preparation process for bread bakeries and other food businesses with high output of dough products.

Commercial mixers are must-haves in pretty much every bakery and in restaurants preparing their own doughs. For many businesses, they are the limiting factor in determining the amount of work which can be done and the amount of dough which can be prepared; in other words, they define the amount of demands which can be met. Since a bakery which has the potential to sell 100 loaves a day will not be able to do so easily without a relatively large commercial mixer, the mixer can play a large part in defining the size and profits a venue can reach. In order to choose the right mixer for the venue, various specifications should be considered.

Size

As stated above, the size of a commercial mixer defines how much batter or dough can be prepared in a venue. Power and durability when mixing heavy loads go hand in hand with the size of the mixer. Whereas venues should aim not to be limited by the size of their mixer, purchasing an overly large mixer can be an unneeded cost and take up much-needed room in the venue. Since new businesses may not know the mixer size they will need after their initial opening, renting or purchasing a secondhand mixer may be a good way to start.

Lift Features

The way a commercial mixer lifts is often not an issue for small businesses. Any kitchen-savvy cook or baker recognizes and knows the typical manual lift which lowers the mixer to a comfortable height for filling, and lifts it to the appropriate height for mixing. However, for larger loads, electric lifts can be more comfortable. Especially for bakeries with high bread sales, the amount of dough which can be conveniently prepared at once is extremely important for business. The type of lift is one of the factors which will affect the potential output of the business. However, for smaller businesses, the added costs of such a feature may not be worth the investment.

Attachments

Different commercial mixer attachments can be used to prepare different food components. The hook used for preparing bread doughs, the guitar used for pie crusts, and the whisk used for meringues and to beat eggs into a foam are the most common attachment types. Needless to say, these accessories have handy uses for bakeries as well as restaurants. The more attachments which are included in the purchase of a commercial mixer, the more potential uses the mixer will have for food preparation. However, if the attachments are not included in the purchase of the commercial mixer, food businesses should make the decisions as to which attachments to buy based on their perceived needs, and choose additional attachments later on as needed.

Protective Features

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Home mixers and small commercial mixers are often devoid of protective features. Their small size and relatively low power make them potentially dangerous, but do not make it crucial to have safety features on them. However, the bigger such a machine gets, the easier it is for workers to mistakenly put their arms in it while it is working. The more powerful it is, the more dangerous such an action can be. Therefore, many bigger mixers include a protective metal net. Food businesses with a high number of workers and those with big commercial mixers should definitely look for machines which include safety features, in order to prevent unpleasant consequences and potential lawsuits. On the other hand, small restaurants looking to purchase a commercial mixer for making small quantities of certain desserts may not feel the need to purchase mixers with safety nets.

Commercial mixers are not necessary in every food venue, but for those which make use of these appliances, the size and features which are needed may vary. Venues should consider their expectations of food preparation needs, but keep in mind that those needs may change over time. Venues just starting out may expand, requiring bigger commercial mixers in the future, whereas restaurants starting out with the plan of making their own bread, may get so busy that homemade bread is no longer a reasonable goal, making a commercial mixer unnecessary. Therefore, businesses may want to purchase less expensive options at first, choosing to make changes if needed once their requirements become clearer with time and experience. The many features and sizes available in commercial mixers provide businesses with the potential to comfortably meet their mixer demands.

One thought on “Choosing a Commercial Mixer

  1. I ran one ball of dough through the mnhaice and I was done. No metal shavings, no grease, no discolored parts. I have only had my mnhaice for 5 years now. Many of the reviews citing problems with this device are older than that, so perhaps the manufacturer listened to the complaints of those who purchased their mnhaices longer ago and who had problems. A success story for quality control and buyer feedback??A couple of tips. I thought that a low speed setting for the mixer would be most appropriate. Bad idea. I find that the best speed settings for the roller and slicing attachments are 3 or 4. If you go slower, you get a less regular texture. Too much quicker and the dough tears.Not documented in the booklet that comes with the device is that you can widen the rollers a bit extra if you go clockwise a bit past 1. This is where I start my rolling. I usually put the ball of dough through this setting 2-3 times, folding it in half before each re-roll.I then narrow the rollers 2 notches for each subsequent rolling until the desired thickness is achieved. I use the following settings for different types of pasta:Ravioli 4Linguini 6Fetuccini 5 Broken Noodles’ 5You can go thinner for things like angel hair pasta, but I usually prefer heartier pastas which Tuscan-inspired sauces.Take note if you are making pasta for a group larger than 3-4, or are otherwise not planning on taking it directly from the roller to boiling water, you will need a good pasta rack/dryer unless you have acres of counter space. If you attempt to accumulate your pasta in a pile’ before cooking, you get a big blob of pasta-ish dough and you will need to completely re-roll it. Laying the pasta in a flat, single layer, is an option but I do not have that much counter space. I therefore use a pasta dryer to hang the pasta for a few minutes to a couple of hours until I am ready to boil it.Updated June 3, 2009 We have been using this now for just shy of 5 years and it still works very well. The device has been easy to maintain, there has been no build up of gunk even though you cannot wash it in soap and water, and the rollers are still spinning evenly despite semi-regular use.Updated June 2010 Still going strong!

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