Breadmakers: How to buy the best bread maker
- Expert advice on buying the best bread maker to suit your needs
- Find out how much bread makers cost, where to buy them and where to get spare parts
- See the Which? bread maker reviews to compare bread makers from brands such as Panasonic, Morphy Richards, Breville, Kenwood and Russell Hobbs
Our bread maker reviews rate bread makers from Panasonic, Morphy Richards, Breville, Kenwood and Russell Hobbs according to our strict indpendent testing. But before you decide, watch our video guide - and read our expert advice - on buying the best bread maker to suit your needs and budget.
Why buy a bread maker?
A bread maker takes the hard work and hassle out of making homemade bread, and in some cases it can be cheaper than buying a supermarket loaf.
Even if you prefer to make more adventurous bread, which may not always work out cheaper, it’s still more satisfying to know exactly what’s in your loaf of bread – and there will be minimum wastage as you can bake exactly what you need.
There are several main brands to choose from, including Panasonic, Morphy Richards, Breville, Kenwood and Russell Hobbs. You can also find own-brand bread makers at big chains such as Argos and Tesco.
Overall, using a Best Buy bread maker means you’ll get a good quality loaf of bread.
How much should I expect to pay for a bread maker
There some excellent bread makers for less than £70, although you can spend more than £100 for a stylish bread maker packed full of programs and features.
Find out how different brands compare, and whether the cheaper models can make a decent loaf, in our bread maker reviews; choose one to suit your budget and compare prices to find the best deal.
How much does it cost to run a bread maker?
Making bread in a bread maker doesn’t cost much, as they don’t consume much energy. Using the standard program to make a white loaf costs, on average, five pence, and uses around 0.34 kWh of electricity. To put this into perspective, boiling one litre of water in an average kettle uses 0.11 kWh.
During our bread maker tests, we’ve found that there’s a maximum difference of between three or four pence per use between the best bread makers and worst machines on test.
How long does it take to bake a loaf in a bread maker?
It takes between three and four hours to bake a large white loaf on a bread maker's standard program. And the quickest rapid-bake program will give you a loaf in less than an hour.
Wholemeal bread takes longer, with most bread makers baking a loaf in just less than four hours. Baking a cake in a bread maker takes about an hour once you’ve mixed the ingredients.
Check the Which? bread maker reviews to see how long each model takes to bake different types of loaf.
How reliable are bread makers?
Whichever bread maker you buy, you want one that’s reliable, so we include bread makers as part of our small domestic appliances reliability survey.
We’ve surveyed more than 13,700 Which? members about their kettles, toasters, irons and bread makers to find the most reliable brands.
We’ve compiled the views of more than 5,000 members about their bread makers to bring you reliability ratings for the top bread maker brands.
Find out which one will last the longest, before you part with your money, in our bread makers reliability survey results.
Where can I buy a bread maker?
Most high-street, independent and online stores stock bread makers. The ranges change every couple of years, so you could find a bargain when the new models hit the shelves.
Some bread makers are quite heavy and come in large boxes, so it can be better to have a bread maker delivered, or order from an online retailer such as Amazon.
What else can you make in a bread maker?
It’s not just bread you can make in a bread maker; most come with extra settings so you can make jam, mix pasta dough, or even bake a cake without using the hob or oven.
A bread maker with these settings will turn fruit and the other raw ingredients into jam, mix and knead pasta dough ready to roll out, shape and cook, or bake pre-mixed ingredients into a (rectangular) cake.
Alternatively, if you’re a fan of adventurous bread-baking then a bread maker with an automatic dispenser will be a good choice, as it saves you from having to wait around to add any extra ingredients, such as dried fruit or nuts, manually.
Most bread makers are versatile enough to produce a variety of products, but do your research before you buy. Our interactive product finder lets you compare bread makers to find models that can make cakes, jam or pasta.
Can I make wheat-free or gluten-free bread in a bread maker?
Bread makers are great for making bread to suit a particular diet. Recipes are widely available for low-salt or gluten-free bread. You can also buy speciality flours, such as spelt, and some bread makers have a special setting to make rye bread.
If you have an allergy, making your own bread means you can be sure of exactly what's gone into the loaf you're eating, and there are many alternative flours, such as quinoa (available from health food shops), rice flour or potato flour, which can be used in a bread maker to make loaves suitable for a gluten-free diet.
Search for a bread maker with a gluten-free setting using our bread makers compare features and prices tool.