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Choosing a KitchenAid Artisan Mixer

The KitchenAid Artisan Mixer is probably the most iconic and most easily recognizable kitchen appliance out there. It is by far KitchenAid's most popular stand mixer and with good reason. The KitchenAid Artisan Mixer line consists of a number of models to suit every taste and lifestyle, from the Artisan Mini Stand Mixer to the high end Custom Metallic Mixers. A few things are consistent between all of the KitchenAid Artisan stand mixers including each coming with KitchenAid's 1 year hassle free replacement warranty, the attachment hub to accommodate over 12 different attachments (sold separately), and the iconic tilt head design that KitchenAid is so well known for.  Let's look at a side by side overview of the KitchenAid Artisan Mixers,  then dig into some of the finer points, and offer some suggestions on what mixer will work best for your needs.

Kitchen Aid Artisan Mini MixerKitchen Aid Artisan Stand Mixer ComparisonKitchen Aid Artisan Design Series Mixer ComparisonKitchen Aid Custom Metallic Mixer


The KitchenAid Artisan Mixer Differences

Kitchen Aid Artisan Mini and Artisan Mixer Differences

Until 2016 the Artisan line consisted of pretty much the same basic machine with differences between the models mainly being the included accessories and finishes. That changed with the introduction of the Artisan Mini Mixer. Although this mini mixer is included in the Artisan Mixer Series it is actually closer in power, size, and bowl capacity to the KitchenAid Classic than the other mixers in the Artisan family.

The Artisan Mini Mixer

The KitchenAid Mini Mixer has several key differences when comparing it to the other mixers in the KitchenAid Artisan Mixer series with the most notable being its size. With the smaller compact size of the mini is not ideal for everyone. The Artisan Mini with its smaller 3.5 qt bowl capacity can only handle smaller recipe sizes compared to the other stand mixers. You're not going to be able to make a double batch of chunky chocolate chip cookie dough with the Artisan Mini, but not everyone needs to. This mini mixer is ideal for smaller 1 or 2 person households that do not have the need to make larger batches.  The compact size and lower weight makes it ideal for smaller living environments like RV, condo or tiny house living.  Like other KitchenAid Mixer the Artisan Mini has over 12 attachments ( sold separately ) to accomplish almost any kitchen task from food processing, to juicing, to making pasta. This only heightens its appeal to those living small. Included with the KitchenAid Mini Artisan are a 3.5 qt brushed stainless steel bowl with no handle, a coated flat beater, coated dough hook, and wire whip.

While the Artisan Mini Mixer is in the KitchenAid Artisan series of mixers it seems to have more in common with the KitchenAid Classic Mixer series with the same wattage, closer bowl sizes, and overall size. The Artisan Mini does have a more efficient, quieter DC motor and comes in a wider array of colors than the Classic mixer. This constitutes it being closer in price to the KitchenAid Artisan KSM150 than the more economically priced Classic KitchenAid mixer. The Artisan Mini is the smallest of the KitchenAid mixers standing a sturdy 12.3" tall with the head down and locked. That is almost 2" shorter than the other Artisan Mixers and a little under an inch shorter than the KitchenAid Classic Mixer.

The KitchenAid Artisan Mixer

The most popular mixer in the Artisan line is by far the KitchenAid Artisan KSM150 stand mixer.  The KSM150 KitchenAid Artisan comes in the widest range of colors - over 32 actually to suit almost every kitchen and personality. The KitchenAid Artisan Mixer comes standard with a 5 qt polished stainless steel bowl with handle, a coated flat beater, wire whip, dough hook and pouring shield. Essentially all of the Kitchen Artisans (with the exception of the Artisan Mini) are the same machine with 5 qt bowl capacities, tilt head design, and 325 watts of power. The KitchenAid Artisan Mixer differences are mainly in the color options, finishes, bowls, and accessories that are included with them.

The KitchenAid Artisan, Artisan Design Mixers, and Custom Metallic mixers are perfect for larger families and for people that enjoy baking and cooking for larger groups of people. The 5qt bowl and higher wattage is enough a double batch of sugar cookie dough or mash up 7 pounds of potatoes (that's enough for about 10 servings of mashed potatoes!) at max capacity.

The Artisan comes standard with a 5 qt stainless steel bowl, a coated flat beater, wire whip, dough hook and pouring shield. The KitchenAid Artisan Designer Series comes in its own range of colors with a double coating giving them added luster and shine. A glass 5 qt bowl with measurement markings, flat beater, wire whip and dough hook is included with this model mixer. The Custom Metallic series is the upper crust of the Artisan models with stunning, high end metal finishes. This Artisan Mixer comes with the same accessories as the standard KitchenAid Artisan Mixer with a stainless steel bowl with handle, coated beater, coated dough hook and wire whip.

The Artisan Mixer Power

The Artisan models all come with the same 325 watt AC motor with the exception of the KitchenAid Artisan Mini Mixer.  The Mini stand mixer comes with a 250 watt DC motor which does have better speed control and slightly quieter operation than the AC motors of the other KitchenAid Artisan mixers. This means that the KitchenAid Mini has the same power output as the KitchenAid Classic Mixer and is on the lower end of the KitchenAid Mixer power spectrum. However, with such a smaller bowl size, the KitchenAid Artisan Mini does not really warrant the need for more power than that. The 325 watts of power of the other KitchenAid Artisans are perfect for making recipes calling for up to 9 cups of flour. This power and the KitchenAid Artisan mixer's 5 qt bowl size is perfectly suited for mixing a standard size batch of 4 dozen chocolate chip cookies but can easily handle a double batch (8 dozen cookies) or as much as 9 dozen cookies, which is its max capacity.

Overloading the mixer or trying to mix up very chunky, thick cookie dough higher than the recommended 4 speed setting can cause the head to bounce or shake. So be sure you know the recommended mixing speeds for the type of recipe you are making. The mixer does have a fail-safe in the form of a single nylon gear that will strip itself before burning out the motor in the event of the mixer being overloaded. Replacing this gear is more cost effective than replacing the entire motor.

Storing Your Artisan Mixer

Thinking about how you will be storing your mixer could be an important factor when making your mixer purchase. The tilt head design gives the KitchenAid Artisan the ability to fit and operate underneath a standard sized cabinet, being only 18" tall with the head tilted up and 14.5" tall with the head down and locked. However, many people, including myself, prefer to pull the mixer out from under the cabinet and close to the counter top edge to operate it. This is not so bad as the mixer has rubber pads on the bottom which makes it easy to pull and push it a few inches. The Artisan Mini is about 2 inches shorter than the KitchenAid Artisan and about 8 lbs lighter, which can make it easier for handle especially if you are going to store it in a cabinet or pantry. The 28+ lbs of the regular Artisans mixers can be a lot to pick up and carry around frequently so keep that in mind is an Artisan mixer is what you have your eyes on.

The Artisan Mixer Color

Kitchen Aid Artisan Mini and Artisan Mixer Colors

Once you know what mixer you want the next big thing is choosing what color. One of the biggest appeals of the Artisan mixer line is the wide array of colors that are available. Probably the most common color questions we get at Everything Kitchens is "What silver color will best match my stainless steel appliances?" While stainless steel can vary from brushed to high polished we have found, that generally the Contour Silver KitchenAid Artisan KSM150PSCU is usually the best match. Don't be afraid of color. If the Majestic yellow mixer makes you happy go for it! Proudly display that color and let it be the brightest thing in your kitchen.

The KitchenAid Artisans and the Artisan Mini Mixers come in a variety of finishes from gloss to matte. The Designer Series features a double coating paint process that gives more of a candied finish that is higher gloss and almost shimmers. If a high end chrome, nickel or copper finish is more what you are wanting for your kitchen the Custom Metallic mixers are your best bet. 

One thing we tell our customers when they are deciding on a color is that we all perceive colors differently. The way one person perceives a color may be different than how you see it. Colors can appear different from one screen to another dependent on your computer settings. Also, the type of lighting in your home can cause colors to look very different than they do when the mixer is is a professionally lit photo studio. One of the colors we hear about the most in regards to color differences is the Cobalt Blue Artisan mixer. In warmer light this mixer can almost look deep purple while in cooler light it can look a navy or even royal blue. 

The Best KitchenAid Stand Mixer for You

Scenarios Mixer Recommended
Single or 2 person household only needing to make smaller batches of recipes KitchenAid Artisan Mini (KSM3311X)
A mixer for smaller apartments mini homes, RV living, and condos KitchenAid Artisan Mini (KSM3311X)
Wanting the most color options to choose from KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer  (KSM150)
For the home baker that occasionally makes cookies and bread for family and friends  KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer  (KSM150)
Love making double batches of cookies (8 dozen cookies) at a time KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer  (KSM150)
Wanting to bake with your child and for them to easily see what is in the bowl KitchenAid Artisan Design Series  Mixer (KSM155) (Because of its glass bowl your child and you can easily see the ingredients mixing throughout the bowl. ) 
Frequently make recipes that call for heated ingredients like tempered chocolate KitchenAid Artisan Design Series Mixer (KSM155) (the included glass bowl is microwave safe) (KSM155)
Wanting a mixer to match your chromed out or copper kitchen  KitchenAid Custom Metallic Mixer (KSM152)
  • Everything Kitchens mixer recommendations are based on our over 10 years of experience selling KitchenAid Mixers and feedback from our customers. Please be sure to do your research about the mixer you are purchasing to further ensure that it is, indeed, the right one for your needs. Always feel free to call our customer service agents at 866-852-4268 Monday-Friday 8am-5pm CST if you have further questions about the mixer you are looking at purchasing.

Updated Febuary 7, 2017 - Everything Kitchens LLC