Food processor or stand mixer - which is best for baking?We reveal which could help you impress Mary Berry
26 August 2015
On tonight’s episode of the Great British Bake Off, contestants will attempt to create a Spanische Windtorte – a classic Austrian dessert that's sculpted from meringue and whipped cream that’s notoriously difficult to make.
Are you also feeling up to the challenge? If you’re brave enough to attempt making this little-known classic, a food processor or stand mixer could help you achieve culinary excellence.
But which type of kitchen helper is most likely to give you the results you need to impress Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry? Below we outline the pros and cons of each.
Best for whipping, whisking and mixing
A Spanische Windtorte is a fancier version of a pavlova. It has a shell made from meringue rings which is then filled, decorated with piped whipped cream and topped with a meringue lid. To get it right you'll need flawlessly whipped cream and meringue with perfect peaks, which is where a food processor or stand mixer can prove invaluable.
We've reviewed and rated all the latest food processors and stand mixers, assessing how well they whisk, whip, knead and mix. Stand mixers usually deliver the best results, with our tests showing that the average model does a better job of whisking, whipping, kneading and mixer than the average food processor. However stand mixers can be pricey and there are some models that let the side down.
If you can see yourself competing on next year’s Bake Off, a stand mixer may be worth your investment – but before you commit, check our stand mixer reviews to ensure you don't waste money on a dud.
Finding the best food processor
If you’re not a die-hard baking fan, you may prefer to invest in a food processor that can take care of a wider variety of kitchen tasks.
They also tend to be more versatile than stand mixers, as food processors can chop, slice, grate and blend. And our testing shows that choosing a food processor doesn’t have to mean compromising when it comes to baking tasks.
Some of the models we’ve tested actually manage to do a better job of whisking egg whites and whipping cream than stand mixers - in fact, some of the best whisking our experts have seen was courtesy of a Best Buy food processor.
If you’re on the hunt for a food processor that can help you become a star baker, use the ‘Which? ratings tab’ on our food processor comparison tool to find a model that gets four or more stars for the tasks that matter to you.
- Find out how to choose between a food processor, mixer or blender
- Read our guide on how to buy the best food processor
- More on how we test stand mixers