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Bake Homemade, Fresh Bread with the Best Bread Maker

Baking bread at home is an exciting and rewarding task, but it can also be quite time consuming, labor-intensive, and challenging. A quality bread machine helps to alleviate the effort that goes into the bread making process, allowing you to enjoy fresh homemade loaves at any time with minimal effort and frustration. We've narrowed down the best bread makers in 2021 on the market, ranging from basic and budget-friendly up to feature-laden investments that you'll want to hang on to for a while.

Here are the best bread maker of 2021

Zojirushi Virtuoso Plus Bread Maker - Best Bread Maker Overall

If you're willing to invest in one of the absolute best bread makers available, the Zojirushi Home Bakery Virtuoso Plus is an industry standard that delivers outstanding overall results. This bread maker makes loaves with a traditional loaf shape, but does fall short when it comes to size options; a 2-pound loaf is all it will make. 15 presets and 3 programmable settings allow for a wide range of bread type and baking options, including gluten-free, vegan, rapid bake, whole wheat, and more. With dual kneading blades and heating elements on both the top and bottom of the maker, bread comes out uniform and beautifully browned. This machine is easy to use, with an excellent recipe book included in the box. It's worth mentioning that the Zojirushi Virtuoso Plus is a large and heavy machine, so be sure you have the necessary counter space before you unpack it from its case.

Hamilton Beach Artisan Bread Maker - Runner Up

The Hamilton Beach Artisan Dough & Bread Maker offers excellent bread making at an accessible price. This is achieved by removing fluff features and options, sticking to the basics instead. The easy-to-use control panel features an LCD display and basic options, including 14 preset cycles, a 15-hour delay timer, and 3 crust settings. An artisan dough option allows for a longer rise time, improving the texture and taste of the bread all while allowing you to remain hands-off. This bread maker allows you to choose betweena 1 pound, 1 1/2 pound, and 2 pound loaf size. Although the inclusion of an automatic mix-in dispenser would have been nice, this inexpensive bread maker is an excellent option for when you need something that works without paying a fortune.

Breville Custom Loaf Bread Maker - Honorable Mention

This advanced bread maker allows for incredible flexibility with your home bread making. The Breville Custom Loaf Bread Maker is also the only one of our top picks that has an hour of backup power so you won't need to start over again should the power go out. An easy-to-use control panel offers a variety of bread type and baking options, with 13 preset and custom programs including gluten-free, yeast-free, dough or pasta, and jam programs. 3 crust settings allow you to achieve the crunch or softness that you're looking for, and a mix-in dispenser makes adding fruit or nuts a simple task. You can even watch the magic happen through the viewing window on the top. This bread maker offers an incredible 4 loaf size options, ranging from 1 pound to 2 1/2 pound loaves - adjustable in 1/2 pound increments. Although the Breville Custom Loaf Bread Maker is a bit of an investment, its excellent performance and wide range of features and options make it a great choice if you like to easily bake many different types of bread.

Rosewill R-BM-01 Programmable Bread Maker - Consider

The Rosewill R-BM-01 Programmable Bread Maker will make you a full 1.5 or a 2 pound loaf of bread in about three hours. Add the ingredients, push a button for one of the 12 pre-programmed cycles, and let the bread maker do the work. It will bake bread, cake, and even make jam on the pre-programmed menu, making this the most feature-packed unit for the best price. There’s also a 13 hour timer so you can set it the night before and wake up to hot bread for breakfast.

This bread maker features a warming function which keeps your bread warm for up to 60 minutes, you can control the crust color whether you want it dark, medium or light, and it even comes with a measuring cup and spoon. Covered by a 30 day warranty, you can't go wrong with this selection.

Buyer's Guide

Many people are used to making bread by hand, which makes them reluctant to use a machine. The beautiful thing about bread makers is that they are easy to set up and use. They also create the best bread with little human input. This article will explore how to get the best bread maker in the market at the best cost.

What are the types of bread makers?

There are two types of bread makers out there: horizontal and vertical machines.

Vertical bread machines

When bread machines first came into the market, they made loaves rectangular and tall. The pans used in them were rectangular, and they often created bread loaves that had an unusual shape. One unique thing about vertical pans is that they usually take up less space on the counter, making them easier to store. Also, they cost less and can make smaller loaves making them ideal for people who don't eat much bread.

The drawback with vertical loaves is that shape may not be the best for making sandwiches. Also, because the heating element is found at the machines’ base, tall loaves may bake unevenly.

Horizontal Bread machines

If you are not drawn to tall loves, go for a machine that makes horizontal-shaped loaves. Such devices often produce loaves that resemble those made in a standard pan. Such machines usually have a more extended bread pan and can make larger loaves than their vertical counterparts. One disadvantage of such pans is that they are larger and take up more space in your kitchen.

Also, horizontal bread makers are more costly than vertical ones.

Things to consider before buying a bread maker

Before you head out there in search of your bread maker, here are some things you should consider.

Loaf capacity

Before you settle for your choice of the bread maker, you need to be sure of how much bread you need to be produced within a time frame. Several bread makers come with different loaf size settings, but this varies from one bread maker to another.

Many bread makers produced bread that weighs about 2 pounds, but others bake larger loaves. Although you will be able to determine the size of your loaf by the amount of water and flour used, you can't create a 2 pound loaf using a machine meant for 1 pound.

Power requirements

While searching for a bread maker, remember that the bigger the loaf, the more power you will need to bake it. Many bread machines have a power range between 500 and 1000 watts. If you are looking to bake loaves of bread with additives such as seeds, nuts, and the likes, you should search for a maker with a higher watt range.

Crust control

Many modern bread makers come with settings that let the user select the crust’s darkness level. Even though this feature may not be too crucial for making the perfect loaf, it does feel good knowing you can control the crust's darkness. If you want to tackle your crust as it browns, goes for a bread machine that allows you to view into the lid and observe the process.

Delayed start

Regardless of the machine you settle for, the best beads take up to four hours to knead, mix and bake. Some loaf makers come with quick-bake cycles, making them create bread quickly. Using a delayed start feature on your bread machine means you will be able to make your fresh bread whenever you desire.

Price

You should be able to get a decent bread maker between $100 and $150. You can get some bread makers for less than $100 while some other more expensive versions cost more than $300.

Gluten-free

Those who have made gluten-free bread before knowing the process of making it is different from traditional bread. Although other bread makers now come with gluten-free settings, always search for one that has this function as a priority. Some of such machines come with one gluten-free bread setting, while others have many options.

Note that the results you get will vary depending on the flour type used. Hence you need to confirm the recipes that are adapted for the machine. Also, if you are trying to make gluten-free bread using a device that has been used before for regular bread, you should clean it. Doing this will help prevent cross-contamination when using the oven.

Warranty

The ideal warranty for bread machines is about a year covering defects in the device. The coverage of such machines may vary based on the model and manufacturer. Thus, you should study the details before buying.

Pre-programmed settings

Today’s bread makers come with several features that can be fun to do. But when a machine has many features, it can make it a bit too complicated. But if you are looking to experiment with different styles, you may need a device that offers such an option.

Different settings help individuals who want to try different styles and grains. If what you need is a maker that can make basic sandwich bread, a simple maker should suffice.

How to use a bread maker

If you have not used a bread maker before, here are some tips that should help you out.· Making bread isn't exactly complex; all you need to do is measure the flour and follow the instructions. Every bread maker model is calibrated electronically. If you add the ingredients the wrong way, you will get bad results.· Only use the flour in the way directed in the recipe.· Ensure the salt and yeast are kept separate. More often than not, the recipe will state the order of adding the ingredients. Make sure you never add yeast and salt at the same time.· When done making the loaf, make sure you place it on a rack to cool down.· To ensure your bread remains fresh, place it in large plastic bags and squeeze the air out. Fasten the plastic bag and keep it for some days.

FAQs

Q: How long do I need to make bread using my bread maker?
A: This varies. Many of the makers have a quick bake setting to get your bread ready in two hours. Bread made this short are often less tasty than the regular bread that takes up to 6 hours to complete.

Q: What are the ingredients I need to make bread using a bread maker?
A: You need water, flour, yeast, and salt. You will also need fat, sugar, and milk to give it a unique taste and flavour.

Q: How can I get the best bread maker?
A: There are several bread machines out there, making it challenging to select the right one. The easiest way out is to search for positive reviews online and referrals from family and friends.

Conclusion

Buying a suitable bread-making machine shouldn't be too difficult. Be clear about your desirables before buying. Be sure of the features, cost, and other requirements before you buy. This guide should be enough to help show you the right way to go in this regard.

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