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KitchenAid Artisan Mini Review

This miniature mixer is great for small-batch recipes though the compact design still comes at a premium
kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review
Credit: KitchenAid
Top Pick Award
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Price:  $380 List
Manufacturer:   KitchenAid
By Jason Wanlass ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Nov 15, 2022
74
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#3 of 12
  • Ease of Use - 30% 7.0
  • Mixing - 30% 7.0
  • Whipping - 25% 8.0
  • Kneading - 15% 8.0

Our Verdict

The KitchenAid Artisan Mini is a small-capacity stand mixer that embodies the same craftsmanship as its larger KitchenAid siblings. This 250-watt, 3.5-quart model compliments chefs who do small-batch cooking and baking. It excels at kneading and has sufficient power to make quick work out of whipping eggs or cream. Likewise, it can evenly combine complex ingredients and kneads like a seasoned dough puncher. However, its abilities begin to wane when mixtures become very heavy or dense. This mini model is no stranger to our list of mixers. This review examines the Artisan Mini's newest version.
REASONS TO BUY
Compact
Ample power
Great kneading action
Very sturdy
REASONS TO AVOID
Limited volume
Pricey for capacity
Struggles blending heavier mixes
Editor's Note: This gear review was updated on November 15, 2022, to retest the newest model of the KitchenAid Artisan Mini.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards Top Pick Award Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award Best Buy Award  
Price $380 List
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Pros Compact, ample power, great kneading action, very sturdyPowerful motor, simplistic design, sturdy platformPowerful, affordable, easy to useAppealing price, easy to lift, powerful, excellent splash guard, easy to cleanEasy to clean, one-handed operation, large bowl
Cons Limited volume, pricey for capacity, struggles blending heavier mixesTilt-head impedes bowl access, mediocre whipping actionPoor whipping action, requires bowl scrapingStruggles to blend dense mixtures, noisier than other models, only four speedsBroad bowl/attachment gap, fiddly splash guard
Bottom Line This miniature mixer is great for small-batch recipes though the compact design still comes at a premiumA do-it-all mixer with a bowl capacity and price suited to most householdsIncredibly powerful and easy to use for the priceHoly cannoli, this mixer is incredibly lightweight and powerful, but it tends to do the jig when the dough gets heavyThis economic mixer sacrifices little in the way of performance to keep the cost low
Rating Categories KitchenAid Artisan... KitchenAid Artisan KitchenAid Classic... Bosch MUM4405 Compact Aucma 6.5qt
Ease of Use (30%)
7.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
5.0
Mixing (30%)
7.0
9.0
7.0
8.0
6.0
Whipping (25%)
8.0
6.0
6.0
5.0
7.0
Kneading (15%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
5.0
6.0
Specs KitchenAid Artisan... KitchenAid Artisan KitchenAid Classic... Bosch MUM4405 Compact Aucma 6.5qt
Head Type Tilt Tilt Tilt Tilt Tilt
Bowl Capacity 3.5 quart 5.5 quart 4.5 quart 4 quart 6 quart
Standard Attachments Wire whip, flat beater, spiral dough hook Whisk, dough hook, and flat mixing paddle Wire whip, dough hook, flat beater Wire whip, flat beater, spiral dough hook Wire whip, flat beater, spiral dough hook
Motor Power 250-watt 500-watt 275-watt 400-watt 575-watt
Mixing Action Planetary Planetary Planetary Planetary Planetary
Number of Speeds 10 6 10 4 10
Attachment Port? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Timer? No No No No No
Measured Dimensions (L x W x H) 14.5" x 10.75" x 14.25" 14.25" x 8.75" x 14" 14.5" x 10.75" x 14.25" 11" x 13" x 10.5" 14.5" x 11.25" x 16"
Measured Weight 16lbs. 18lbs. 2oz. 22lbs. 13oz. 8lbs. 1oz. 26lbs. 1oz.
Warranty Limited 5-year Limited 3-year 1-year 1-year 1-year
Color Options 10 8 2 1 22

Our Analysis and Test Results

The KitchenAid Artisan Mini is the smallest stand mixer in the KitchenAid family. However, its smaller capacity is exactly what makes it unique. For home chefs who don't have an army to feed, the Artisan Mini is the perfect size for a small batch of cookies or a loaf of bread or two. Better yet, this mixer's petite size does not equate to lower quality; you won't be shocked by the price tag attached to this mini mixer. We're not saying the Artisan Mini is expensive. Rather, we are simply saying that its quality is a cut above other brands we tested, so expect to pay more.

Performance Comparison


kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - same tilt head. same mixing attachments. same quality. the artisan...
Same tilt head. Same mixing attachments. Same quality. The Artisan Mini is just smaller than its siblings.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

Ease of Use


"Sturdy" and "well-balanced" are two words that come to mind when describing the Artisan Mini. Despite being one of the smaller units on our list, it was subjected to the same tests administered to its larger competitors and performed very well. Once the flour dust settled, we awarded it solid marks for its user-friendliness. As part of our ease of use score, we examine the gap between the mixer's attachments and the bowl. We found no issues with the Artisan Mini; however, we did see its mixing abilities decrease while blending heavier mixes. We also noticed a consistent ring of material around the upper bowl during our frosting tests. Both of these setbacks create more work for the chef and thus influence the ease of use score.


This latest version of the 3.5-quart Artisan Mini is one pound lighter than its predecessor. Despite its recent weight loss, it still has the power to plow through dough like a tank, while maintaining the finesse to blend complex ingredients effectively.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - locking in our whisk attachment to make light work out of a batch of...
Locking in our whisk attachment to make light work out of a batch of whipped cream.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

As we mentioned before, this mixer is sturdy. During our most challenging mixer tests, it never wobbled, rattled, or moved in any direction. As with all KitchenAid mixers, its controls are simple and direct. In particular, we like that it employs a manual lever to lock the motor head in place. This allows the user to lift and lower the head with one hand. However, this design has one drawback: Manual locks can easily be forgotten. We often neglected to engage the lock before turning on the mixer. Likewise, when tilting the motor head open, we frequently forgot to lock it securely in place. This was especially irksome when an inadvertent elbow sent the heavy motor head crashing into a bowl of frothy egg whites.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - the locking lever which secures the motor head is not our favorite...
The locking lever which secures the motor head is not our favorite feature. It's easy to forget, which can lead to spills or possible injury if forgotten while the head is tilted up.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

The Artisan Mini's 250-watt motor is small but powerful. We were pleasantly surprised to see it knead dry pizza dough and quickly whip cream or egg whites without missing a beat. Our decibel readings also prove that this model is quieter than half the mixers we tested. When prep was over and the bread was in the oven, the Artisan Mini's attachments and mixing bowl were a breeze to clean. Likewise, the mixer's smooth surface has very few nooks or crannies, making it easy to wipe down.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - putting the final touches on a clean kitchen. washing our artisan...
Putting the final touches on a clean kitchen. Washing our Artisan Mini mixing bowl is a snap.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

A smaller mixer does not equate to fewer features. The Artisan Mini offers ten mixing speeds just like many of its larger siblings in our review of the best stand mixers. It also offers a slow-start feature that gradually brings the mixing head up to the desired speed. Additionally, it has a long power cord and is compact enough to be stored in most cupboards or shelves. All things considered, the Artisan Mini is a pleasure to use. This model is a viable option for dedicated cooks and bakers who love to create in the kitchen, but simply desire a smaller mixer.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - the artisan mini may be smaller, but it's just as tough as the...
The Artisan Mini may be smaller, but it's just as tough as the full-size models.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

Mixing


The Artisan Mini produced excellent smooth butter-cream frosting. Its Flex Edge flat beater incorporates a spatula edge on one end, which effectively collects contents from the edge of the bowl and reincorporates them into the mix. The end product is a light, creamy, well-blended frosting that any cupcake would be proud to wear. Our frosting test is just one of three tests associated with our mixing metric. We also subjected our mixers to a complex cowboy cookie recipe, as well as a boxing match versus heavy, dry pizza dough.


Our very weighty cowboy cookie recipe is a fusion of chopped pecans, coconut flakes, chocolate chips, oats, and more. It was specifically selected to challenge each mixer's motor. This test is also aimed at exploring the effectiveness of each model's planetary motion. Additionally, the recipe is intended to quickly point out any excessive gaps between the flat beater and the inner wall of the mixing bowl. We were skeptical about whether or not the Artisan Mini's 250-watt motor was up to the task, but we were pleasantly surprised by the results. This little mixer never missed a beat as it effectively blended the complex dough without waning. However, once the mixture became super thick, the Artisan Mini's flat beater simply bored a hole into the middle of the dough, leaving us with some minor mixing to finish by hand.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - scraping the bowl after our cowboy cookie recipe got away from us...
Scraping the bowl after our cowboy cookie recipe got away from us. We subjected this 3.5 quart mixer to the full recipe, and it performed nearly on par with larger, more powerful models.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

Our cookie recipe also allowed us to observe each model's ability to mix a variety of wet and dry ingredients, which in turn, increased the mixture's weight and thickness throughout the mixing process. All of the ingredients in the Artisan Mini were well blended without being pulverized. Even the chocolate chips were still perfectly shaped. It bears mentioning that we did not modify or reduce our recipe to accommodate this mixer's smaller size. So we're confident it will do a better job mixing recipes suited to its capacity.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - the pecans weren't obliterated, the oats were still oaty, and many...
The pecans weren't obliterated, the oats were still oaty, and many of the chocolate chips still had their little loop of chocolate intact. The Artisan Mini blended all of the ingredients in our cowboy cookies without destroying them in the process.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

We held back on giving the Artisan Mini a superior mixing score because of its inability to completely scrape the bowl clean during our cookie and frosting tests. In the initial stages of each recipe, the flat beater often pushed a portion of the mixture into a ring around the upper bowl, requiring frequent spatula breaks to push it back into the mix.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - the butter-cream ring of death: this was one of our only complaints...
The butter-cream ring of death: This was one of our only complaints with the Artisan Mini. When it came time to cream butter with sugar, we always planned on doing a lot of reps with the spatula.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

Whipping


The Artisan Mini delivered solid performances in our small-batch whipping test and our cake-rise test, landing it alongside top performers in our lineup.


During our small-batch test, each mixer was timed to see how quickly and effectively it could turn just a half-cup of cream into a smooth batch of whipped cream. The Artisan Mini produced stiff peaks in exactly two minutes, placing it on par with some of the fastest times on our list. Jointly, this test also measured the increased volume of the cream as it evolved into its whipped state. The Artisan Mini effectively doubled the original half-cup into exactly 1-cup of whipped cream.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - first glance at the finished product: tasty whipped cream in two...
First glance at the finished product: Tasty whipped cream in two minutes.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

In our cake-rise test, we examined how effectively each mixer whipped six egg whites, a key leavening ingredient in our sponge cake recipe. After firming into stiff peaks, the egg meringue was folded into a lemon chiffon cake batter and baked. After letting the cakes cool, we sliced them in half and measured the thickness of each cake's center and edges. A springy, spongy cake with a large rise indicates that the mixer effectively whipped the egg whites. Likewise, we looked for evenly cooked cakes with little sagging in the middle. Combined with its 10-speed motor, the Artisan Mini's whisk attachment is very efficient at whipping egg whites into stiff peaks. This mini mixer produced excellent sponge cakes equal to some of the top-performing, full-size mixers on our list.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - checking the rise on our lemon chiffon cake. the artisan mini's cake...
Checking the rise on our lemon chiffon cake. The Artisan Mini's cake emerged with a nearly even contour with a middle rise of 1 inch and 3/8. This measurement matched many of the top performers on our list, and shows its mixing proficiency.
Credit: Jason Wanlass


Kneading


Our basic pizza dough recipe was no match for the Artisan Mini. Our goal was to observe how well the mixer could incorporate wet and dry ingredients and then knead them into a thoroughly mixed dough. We quietly stared, with eyebrows raised, as our little-mixer-that-could effortlessly mixed our ingredients into a perfect ball of dough. Using only the hook attachment for the entire process, the Artisan Mini never struggled and never once needed any additional spatula help during the entire process.


Regardless of its smaller motor and more compact mixing bowl, we subjected the Artisan Mini to the full pizza dough recipe. It never wobbled or moved throughout the kneading test, proving it to be very sturdy and well-balanced. This level of sturdiness is not often found in smaller-capacity stand mixers.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - the mixing bowl looked nearly clean after plowing easily through our...
The mixing bowl looked nearly clean after plowing easily through our kneading test. Hardly a stitch of dough left on the sides.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

Should You Buy the KitchenAid Artisan Mini?


The KitchenAid Artisan Mini offers users significant power and performance in a relatively small package. That said, don't let its smaller size fool you — its price tag is still parallel with other top-performing KitchenAid Models. True to KitchenAid form, this model doesn't cut corners on craftsmanship or function. The Artisan Mini's niche is small kitchens lacking storage space. So if you're a cook who demands top quality but desires smaller capacity, this is the perfect mixer for you.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - finished product: the best part of our cowboy cookie test. these...
Finished product: The best part of our cowboy cookie test. These beauties quickly disappeared.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

What Other Stand Mixers Should You Consider?


If cost isn't a limiting factor for you, we suggest going with a larger mixer, such as the KitchenAid 6-Qt Professional Bowl-Lift or KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer. Overall, they perform exceptionally well and will likely manage most tasks thrown at them.

kitchenaid artisan mini stand mixer review - tasty goodbye photo. now that we're done, we finally get to enjoy...
Tasty goodbye photo. Now that we're done, we finally get to enjoy the spoils of hard work.
Credit: Jason Wanlass

Jason Wanlass
 
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