- The 4 most powerful KitchenAid stand mixers
- AC vs DC Motors
- Motor speed range in KitchenAid mixer models
- Does stand mixer power matter?
- Difference between smallest and largest KitchenAid mixer?
- Do you need the strongest KitchenAid Mixer?
- Why are bowl-lift mixers more powerful than the tilt-head?
KitchenAid stand mixers are on every baker’s must-have list of kitchen appliances. Regardless if you are an amateur baker looking for your first stand mixer, or a seasoned pastry chef looking for something much bigger, I guarantee KitchenAid has the perfect machine for you.
Today, KitchenAid stand mixers come in a huge range of shapes and sizes. Their machines have various holding capacities, motor sizes, and colors, built to serve bakers of all experience levels and style preferences.
Let’s say your kitchen is short on space and you need a compact machine that you can easily put away in a storage cabinet; the KitchenAid Artisan Mini is just the machine model for you. How about something a little more serious? Suppose you’re going all-in on your home bakery business. In that case, KitchenAid comes to your rescue with its range of Professional and Commercial stand mixer models capable of whipping up dozens of cakes, pastries, and batters in a matter of seconds. For many of us, their popular Classic and Artisan series could do the trick nicely.
Here, I want to take a closer look at the most powerful KitchenAid mixers and answer common questions you might have about KitchenAid motors. What is the strongest KitchenAid mixer? What’s the difference between an AC and DC stand mixer? Do you need a powerful motor? And does the power of a stand mixer actually matter?
Let’s find out!
The 4 most powerful KitchenAid stand mixers
With a 1.3 hp, 500-Watt DC motor, the Commercial 8-Quart is the most powerful KitchenAid stand mixer currently available. This machine also has the largest holding capacity of any mixer and has the ability to make up to 15 dozen cookies or half a dozen cakes in a single mix. That’s a lot of sweet treats!
As this mixer is designed for commercial kitchens, it has some additional safety features exclusive to this model, including and wire guard and a stop switch. It also comes with a nifty pouring chute too, which is another unique feature of this model. Unspuriningly, the Commerical 8-Quart also takes the title as the heaviest, and largest, mixer in the KitchenAid line.
Because of its massive capacity, the KitchenAid Commercial is the obvious choice for professional bakers who are working from home or run commercial kitchens. For most of us amateur bakers though, this machine is probably a little bit overkill.
7-Quart Pro Line
The second most powerful KitchenAid stand mixer is the 7-Quart Pro-Line. This model shares many of the features of the Commerical 8-quart, including that beefy 1.3 hp DC motor and bowl-lift design, making it the most powerful mixer designed for home bakers. Because it’s designed for domestic use, the Pro-Line is a little lighter than the Commercial 8 Quart and is less expensive, coming in at around $100 cheaper. It also has that slightly smaller bowl capacity, ensuring it won’t completely take over your kitchen countertop.
The Pro Line 7 is the biggest KitchenAid mixer designed for the home baker. This incredibly powerful mixer will have no problem kneading the thickest of bread doughs, supplying the sweet treats for your next school bake sale or those big family gatherings.
The Professional 6500 is the third biggest KitchenAid mixer you can currently get your hands on is. Again, this is one of the few machines that currently uses a superior Direct Current motor. It’s a slightly smaller motor than the one used on the Commerical and Pro-Line 7 models, although it still boasts an impressive 1bhp output.
Like the Pro-Line, this machine is designed with the home baker in mind and comes standard with a slightly smaller 6-Quart bowl. Because this is one of the company’s Design’ series, it comes standard with a beautiful glass bowl, as opposed to a classic stainless steel one, making the Professional 6500 the only bowl-lift model to come standard with a glass bowl. Like every KitchenAid mixer, you can buy additional replacement mixer bowls, although you should bear in mind that you will also need to invest in different-size attachments too, as the 6500 F Series attachments are specially designed to work with this glass bowl.
The KitchenAid 6-Quart Professional 600 packs quite a punch with a respectable 575-watt motor, making it the fourth-strongest KitchenAid mixer. Unlike the other mixers mentioned above, this machine uses an AC motor. This plays an important role in the amount of torque the mixer can produce (more on that later).
Coming with a 6-Quart bowl, it’s more than big enough to handle even the largest of baking tasks. At full capacity, you can make dough for 8 standard loaves of bread or 13 dozen cookies. The Professional 600 is the slightly older, less powerful, sibling of the Professional 6500. Although it does come in a slightly larger range of colors, because of that AC motor, it’s a bit noisier than the 6500 too.
As this is an older model and a slightly less powerful one, you will be able to get your hands on the Professional 600 at a lower price than the other mixers on this list. This is partly the reason why this has been one most popular bowl-lift mixers for almost two decades!
AC vs DC Motors
Since we are on the topic of KitchenAid motors, we need to quickly discuss this AC vs DC conundrum. I bet more than a few of us have scratched our heads over this.
A quick forewarning, this might get a bit “sciencey” but bear with me here, I promise it will be worth it!
Depending on your model, your mixer might use an AC (alternating current) or DC (direct current) motor. As you will remember from science class, AC current changes directions continuously as it flows, supplying a varied rate of current. Whereas a DC motor, on the other hand, will supply a steady and continuous flow.
Why does this matter? Because the torque of a motor is directly proportional to the current. Torque is the measurement of rotational force and the more torque a stand mixer produces, the more powerful the mixing motion will be. In short, this means a mixer that can produce more torque will be able to handle thicker batters and larger quantities with ease.
As a DC motor is supplying a continuous level of current, compared to an AC motor that will fluctuate and occasionally produces a lower level of current, a DC motor will consistently produce higher torque (pounds-feet), even if both motors use the same amount of electrical energy (watts).
As you probably know, the electricity that comes out of your wall socket is AC. Because of this, a DC motor needs to use a diode (or multiple diodes), which are electrical components that allow a machine to convert AC current into DC current.
The extra components and complexities involved in a DC motor are the reason why they are found on the most powerful KitchenAid stand mixers. These types of motors weigh more and are also more expensive to manufacture, which is why DC motor mixers tend to cost more than their AC counterparts.
In addition, DC motors are more efficient, so you will also find that a DC KitchenAid mixer will be significantly quieter than an AC one. Here’s a quick video comparing the noise of both an AC and DC KitchenAid.
So to summarize, a DC motor:
- Produces more torque compared to an AC motor of the same size
- Is less noisy because it’s more efficient
- Heavier because it needs diodes and extra components to change AC current to DC
- More expensive because of the extra complexities involved
Motor speed range in KitchenAid mixer models
The motor size of KitchenAid stand mixers currently ranges from 250 watts to a whopping 575 watts.
Watts is the measurement we use to quantify electrical power output, which is one factor that determines how strong your machine motor will be. Smaller motors that produce less torque will struggle with large quantities or thick batter, as they are unable to generate the force required to undertake such activities.
KitchenAid mixers, regardless of their model, share many features and functions including the standard 10 speed settings. The motor power and mixing bowl capacities are what fundamentally set stand mixers series apart from one another.
The Classic models from the KitchenAid line are the least powerful, having only a 275-Watt AC motor. The Artisan 5 series is slightly bigger, with a 325-Watts AC motor. The Artisan Mini has the smallest motor of any KitchenAid, with 250-watt output. However, because the Mini uses DC current, it is able able to produce the same amount of torque as the Artisan 5 series.
As we have already discussed, the entry models of the Professional series come with a 575-Watt AC motor, while the strongest KitchenAid mixers (the Commercial and 7-Quart Pro Line) come with that beefy 500-Watt DC motor.
Does stand mixer power matter?
I am sure many of us don’t pay that much attention to our stand mixer motor or its respective power output. If you are anything like me, you probably just choose a popular model based on the positive reviews of fellow bakers!
If you want to choose a stand mixer that’s right for you though, you will first need to give some thought as to what you will use your mixer for, and how often you will be using it.
A stand mixer with a powerful motor does a better job of handling your mixing and blending needs. If you want your machine to handle a bigger load of ingredients, it needs to have a stronger and more efficient motor. And remember, the more powerful your stand motor is, the more efficient it will be at prepping your dough or batter. The speed will stay the same, but the torque (or force) it exerts on your dough and batter will be greater. The same concept applies if you want to use specific attachments that enable your KitchenAid stand mixers to grind meat or mill flour.
Ultimately, the power output of your stand mixer will also determine how well it handles stiffer dough and batter. Budget-friendly KitchenAid mixers (if you can call them that) will be able to handle whipping up a basic batter perfectly fine. However, if you are planning on mixing stiffer bread dough regularly, you might want to consider a more powerful machine. If you are trying to mix a really stiff batter in a smaller machine, it can cause the motor to overheat and can cause damage to the gears. You certainly don’t want to cause any harm to your precious mixer!
Remember, the size of the motor is a key contributor to why KitchenAid mixers are so expensive. It’s pretty simple really, more power equals more money!
Difference between smallest and largest KitchenAid mixer?
The KitchenAid Artisan has the least powerful motor of all the KitchenAid mixers. The motor strength is enough to handle the mixing and blending of around 1½ pounds (680g) of flour.
On the other end, you have the 8-quart Commercial mixer model with 1.3 horsepower. That is one powerful motor!
Do you need the strongest KitchenAid Mixer?
Will you be using it to make the infrequent cake, small loaf of bread, cream butter, or whisk eggs for meringues?
A smaller KitchenAid mixer like the 3.5-quart Mini or the 4.3-quart Classic comes with less powerful motors. These appliances are perfect for couples or families that do the occasional baking.
Do you plan to use the stand mixer for kneading bread, cookies, or pasta dough?
If you’re looking for a stand mixer that helps with your formidable holiday bakes or a home baking enterprise, a bigger capacity model with a tough motor is a better choice. You definitely need one of that 500 watt and 575-watt beauties on your kitchen countertop.
And for those of you who plan on going commercial or baking by the dozens, the strongest KitchenAid stand mixer is your safest bet. A 500 watt DC motor is obviously more robust than a 300 watt AC motor and can tackle those heavy-duty tasks with ease.
Another reason you need to upgrade or opt for a heavy-duty motor is the unexpected, vibrating movements of the machine while it is working. If you overload your small-capacity stand mixer or use it to process chunky ingredients at higher speeds, the stand mixer can shake or bounce a lot.
Again, I want to reiterate that you may even end up damaging the motor and gears with prolonged use in this manner as it will inevitably lead to faster wear and tear of your stand mixer.
Why are bowl-lift mixers more powerful than the tilt-head?
Have you noticed that the strongest KitchenAid mixers all have something in common? They all have bowl-lift style mixing bowls rather than the tilt-head designs!
Coincidence? I think not.
The reason for this is actually pretty simple. The bowl-lift design provides superior stability to the mixer, this is particularly important when you’re making large batches of dough and batter with a powerful motor. Also, the bowl-lift mechanism not only provides superior stability while mixing but also helps to place the bowl in the most effective mixing position. This allows the beater to come in contact with the ingredients in the most effective way, allowing for a smoother and better mix.
If you want to dive deeper into comparing both these KitchenAid designs, be sure to take a read of our tilt-head vs bowl-lift breakdown.
Is it worth getting a bowl-lift if you don’t bake at a commercial level?
If you are making small batches of sugary treats, stick to your tilt-head models by all means. For those who spend a lot of time baking, or enjoying whipping up a thick batter or dough, a bowl-lift machine is probably more your style.
If you plan to use power-intensive attachments like the slow juicer or food grinder, a bowl-lift mixer is also a good idea here too.
The stand mixer that is right for you will depend more on how often and how you use it. The strongest stand mixer is better suited to commercial baking, while the less powerful stand mixers are perfect for those whose baking requirements are more basic.