What you said about how a planetary mixer moves in an orbiting motion was really interesting to me. If I were to guess, this would allow the speed of the attachment to get really high. This would allow mixing to be a lot faster and more efficient.
We Got the Beat: How to Find the Best Mixer for Your Bakery
You will need around $50,000 to outfit a small bakery in the United States. And that's not counting staff, the rent on the physical location and the water and electricity bill.
Chances are you will be spending several thousand dollars on a commercial pastry mixer for your baker. We can help make sure you get the best mixer. Read on.
3 Type of Mixers
There are 3 main types of commercial mixers for baking. They are the planetary, horizontal and dough mixer.
They each have different uses and functions.
1. Planetary Mixer
A planetary mixer, sometimes called a vertical mixer, moves in an orbit like a planet (hence the name).
The mixing bowl doesn't move while the agitator propels the mixing rod to mix pastry doughs, meringue, pudding, and icing.
Depending on the size of the batch you are making, you can use variously sized mixing bowls. That means that you can make a small batch easily.
Planetary mixers also have various attachments that can help you do various tasks such as slicing and whipping.
2. Spiral Mixers
Spiral mixers (also known as dough mixers) work differently than planetary mixers. In this case, the bowl rotates while the spiral rod remains still in the middle of the bowl.
You can quickly make big batches of any kind of dough with a spiral mixer. But you can't whip using this mixer, it can only mix.
You can't get agitator attachments with these models but if you want to get the job done quickly, the spiral mixer is best. The perk is that you don't have to change the mixing bowl to make a smaller batch.
3. Horizontal Mixers
Horizontal mixers tilt the bowl during mixing. The beaters or mixing shaft sit horizontally in the agitator in these models.
The speed of the attachment will determine how the dough is cut or stretched.
Consider the Size of the Commercial Bread Mixer
One of the biggest considerations is the size of the commercial bread mixer. Especially if you need to maximize space in a small commercial kitchen.
You can choose between countertop or stand mixers. Countertop models are less than 10 quarts and sit on your work surface.
Stand mixers are 10-20 quarts and need an equipment stand. Anything larger than 20qts is a floor mixer and sits right on the floor.
Think about whether you have more counter space or floor space to dedicate to a mixer.
What Will You Be Mixing?
All commercial mixers can handle being used in a busy commercial kitchen. But certain mixers are better suited for certain jobs.
As you know, there is a huge difference between the consistency of pizza dough and merengue.
Think about what you will mostly be using your mixer for and then find the best mixer for that job. It will probably be able to do the rest of the bakery tasks you need it to, anyhow.
You can also calculate the absorption ratio of your commonly used doughs. Just divide the pounds of water by pounds of flour. The lower the number (your absorption rate) the harder it is to mix that dough.
Keep that in mind as you shop for the best mixer and look for a unit that is powerful enough to handle your baking needs.
How Much Will You Be Mixing?
Again, this will be important in helping you choose the right mixer for your commercial bakery.
If you are a small bakery that sells an assortment of baked goods and coffee, you may be fine with a 5-20 qt mixer.
On the other hand, a bakery that provides fresh bread to other establishments will probably need a floor model spiral mixer.
Consider the Attachment Options
The kitchen, no matter the size, can quickly get crowded with all the things that go in there. One of the best things you can do is to buy multifunctional equipment that lets you do more jobs with less gear.
One appliance verses several will save valuable space in your bakery. There are various attachment options you can consider for a planetary and horizontal mixer.
Grater & Shredder
An attachment that is a marvel is one that lets you grate and shred veggies, cheeses, and fruits in a fraction of the time.
Usually, these attachments have various discs of different sizes so that you can choose how finely you want your food grated and shredded.
Just like a shredder, a vegetable and fruit slicer can cut down much of your prep time by making foods into small pieces. Then all you'll have to do is arrange them on top of the banana cream pie or tarts.
A bowl scraper is a handy tool that reduces food waste in the kitchen. This attachment scrapes the bowl as the bowl turns. It's convenient and gets more batter than you could by manually scraping the bowl.
A pastry knife attachment is a must-have if you will be mixing heavy doughs such as pizza or pie doughs. It can combine thick ingredients without a problem.
A flat beater attachment is a great addition to your bakery. It is ideal for mixing the batter for brownies and various cakes as well as firm cookie dough.
You may use a flat beater to make icing also.
Bottom Line on Choosing the Best Mixer for Your Bakery
Thanks for reading. At the end of the day, the best mixer is the one that works best for your specific bakery.
You don't want to have a mixer that has a bunch of bells and whistles you don't need or that takes up more room than you can spare. As you consider what you will mostly be using your mixer for, you'll be able to choose the right mixer for the job.