There are a lot of differences when you are looking at bread machines. I love my bread machine and it gets as much room as necessary on our counter because we use it so much. It is one of the most used appliances in our kitchen.
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Picking the Best Bread Machines
Maybe you are just looking for small loaves of bread instead of a larger loaf that will feed a family. Or an all-in-one machine that not only makes bread but that you can make yogurt and jam in. Yes, those are options I have. And I have made yogurt in my bread machine.
Things to Consider When Choosing a Bread Machines
Loaf Capacity – How many people are going to be fed off a loaf of bread? Family of five or more, or a family of two?
Machine Size and Weight – Do you have a lot of room for keeping it on your counter? Or does it need to be light enough that you can easily move it into storage?
Loaf Pan Shape – When you bake in a bread machine, all of your bread will be the same basic shape since there is only one loaf pan that can be used. Most bread machines turn out either tall/vertical or rectangular-shaped loaves.
Kneading Paddles – Budget bread makers will include at least one kneading paddle, but higher-end machines usually come with two paddles. Multiple paddles are preferable for the best kneading results.
Pre-Programmed Settings – Our machine has 19 different settings. If that sounds too complicated for you then that is something to keep in mind and look for one with fewer settings and less complicated.
Crust Control – Do you like a lighter or darker crust? Some breads brown faster as they bake, this setting controls how long it bakes for.
Gluten-Free Options – If you’ve ever made gluten-free bread, you know that the process is different from making standard bread, and the dough behaves much differently.
Delayed Start – Not something you have thought about? Me neither. But it's nice to set everything up so you have hot fresh bread first thing in the morning.
Price – Bottom line, how much as you looking to spend on a small appliance. The more you are looking to spend, the higher the quality and most likely more options. On average, you can expect to spend somewhere in the range of $100 to $150 for a decent bread machine from a mid-range brand.
Types of Bread Machines
Vertical Bread Machines – When bread machines were first sold, they produced bread loaves that were tall and rectangular in shape.
Horizontal Bread Machines – If tall loaves are too awkwardly shaped for you, look for a bread machine that produces horizontal, rectangular-shaped loaves that look more like bread that was baked in a standard loaf pan.