Updated: November 3, 2023
Do you covet a KitchenAid Artisan mixer?
It’s pretty. It’s sexy. It’s famous. It’s the star of stand mixers.
But do looks and fame equate to quality? Do you worry that the praises are overblown?
Is it a charming enchantress which in the end will leave you disappointed and your wallet broken?
How will you get the answers to all your doubts? Through due diligence.
You can either bury your head going through countless reviews and use up precious time…
…or, you can continue reading to find out the answers to your most nagging questions.
- Bestselling stand mixer.
- The sweet spot in stand mixers.
- Bring life to your kitchen with its array of gorgeous colors to match your style.
- Go beyond baking with 15 optional attachments.
As of 2023-12-09 at 12:24 (More info)
We dug deep for days to come up with this unbiased and comprehensive Artisan mixer review that separates the myths from the facts, addresses pressing concerns and tells you what this stand mixer will actually do.
It highlights the experiences of countless Artisan users, not just of one tester.
This is not your typical review that only lists features. I’m sure you want more than that.
You want to know if those features will make your baking simpler and faster or give you better bakes or knead loaves of bread dough, etc.
And, we’ll give you that.
Let’s break this down for you…
Table of Contents
- Power of the KitchenAid Artisan
- Is It A Tilt-Head Or A Bowl-Lift Mixer?
- Speed Settings of the KitchenAid Artisan Series
- Let’s Talk About Dough
- Can It Mix Multiple Batches of Cookie Dough?
- How Well Does The Artisan Mix?
- Does It Walk on The Counter?
- What Accessories Are Included With The Artisan Stand Mixer?
- What Attachments Are Available?
- Attachment Speed Setting
- How Do You Care For And Clean This Mixer and Its Accessories?
- How Tall and Heavy is the KitchenAid 5-Quart Artisan Mixer?
- What Colors Are Available For The KitchenAid Mixer Artisan Series?
- Other Precautions
- Pros and Cons of the KitchenAid Artisan
- Customer Reviews
- Should You Bring Home A KitchenAid Artisan?
Power of the KitchenAid Artisan
We always rely on wattage to assess a stand mixer’s power. It is a good starting point, but the type of motor – AC or DC – is a better gauge of power.
A DC motor is more powerful than an AC motor. Go here to learn more about AC and DC stand mixers.
The Artisan mixer has a 325 watts direct drive AC motor.
You must be wondering if a 325-watt stand mixer is powerful or not.
Stay with me now.
It depends. Will you frequently use it for bread dough or for cakes and cookies? Will you often prepare double or triple batches of cookie dough or bread dough?
The KitchenAid Artisan is “powerful” enough for most mixing tasks: cake batters, cookie dough, frosting, and even bread (more on this later).
Now, to that next alien-sounding term: direct drive. What is it?
… it is a system of gears that transfers power directly to the bowl and contents. It means less power loss and less on your electric bill
Can you use it in another country?
The Kitchenaid KSM150P Artisan series stand mixer is 110 volts and is designed for the U.S.
If you are from a place that operates on 220 volts, you will need a step down transformer. Or, there is a 220-volt model, but it is more expensive.
Now, let’s get the facts for one of the most oft-repeated question…
Is It A Tilt-Head Or A Bowl-Lift Mixer?
The Artisan is a tilt-head KitchenAid mixer.
But what exactly is a tilt-head?
Picture yourself moving your head up and down.
That is exactly how a tilt-head stand mixer works. Its motor head, which is hinged to the body and is held in place by a locking pin, tilts up.
But what is the tilting-head for?
Tilting the head gives access to the bowl and its content.
When do you need to access the bowl?
Answer: when you want to scrape or mix by hand and when you attach or remove an accessory (beater, whip, hook, pouring shield or bowl).
Here’s a couple of important reminders when moving the motor head up or down:
- The locking pin must be unlocked before tilting the head.
- Make sure the head is locked in the down position before running the mixer to prevent wobbling or bouncing.
A tilt-head design is user friendly. You only need one hand to unlock and lift the head in one gentle sweep.
One more thing to note: the bowl of a tilt head stand mixer is fixed on its base.
Let’s move on to the next feature…
Speed Settings of the KitchenAid Artisan Series
Mixing speeds of an Artisan starts with “Stir”, and goes from 2 to 10. Its speed is controlled by a lever located on the left side, and settings are printed in increments of “2”.
But where are speeds 3, 5, 7 and 9? They are not printed, but can be located between Speeds 2, 4, 6, 8 and 10.
Do you need such fine adjustments in speed? Not really. The five settings shown are sufficient for different mixing jobs.
However, fast speeds may not be attained or maintained with dense loads, like bread dough. Also, differences between speeds at higher settings is unnoticeable with heavy loads, big amounts or thick consistencies.
Is the slow start, slow enough?
Yes, it starts slowly, enough to incorporate the ingredients a bit. Start every mixing at ‘STIR’ to prevent flour puffs and liquid flying off the bowl and into your work space or worse into your face .
I can’t count the times I’d have to wipe flour puffs and liquid off my face, my nose, my clothes when using my hand mixer. It does not have a slow start, and I usually forget and just plunged the beaters into the heap of unmixed ingredients.
TIP: Dial down to “STIR” each time you add fine ingredients into the mix.
Let’s Talk About Dough
Can the Artisan KitchenAid knead dough?
Yes, it kneads dough perfectly.
But, there’s a catch…
It’s not a bread mixer; hence, use it only twice or thrice a week for kneading. Two loaves at a time is ideal, enough for two to three persons who don’t feast on bread.
It shuns dry and hard dough, and struggles, strains and shakes as it kneads. The trick is to finish kneading by hand once the dough gets tough.
It can manage occasional sourdough or bagel, but never push it.
Reminders if you are going to use your Artisan KSM150P mixer for bread:
- NEVER, EVER exceed Speed2 on bread dough and other thick batters like a double batch of thick cookie dough. Sticking to a low speed maybe the single most important step you can take to protect your mixer’s motor.
- Be careful. One owner reported that she accidentally swept the speed control lever to a higher speed causing damage to her mixer.
- Observe a maximum mixing time of 3 to 4 minutes, or even lower.
Preparing dough with a stand mixer is a bit different than doing it by hand. You may have to alter the recipe, use a different technique or change the procedure a bit. It might take a few trials, too.
Can It Mix Multiple Batches of Cookie Dough?
My sons have fond memories of my late Aunt’s cookie tradition. She loved to delight her thirty plus grandchildren with her gorgeous and tasty cookie creations: gooey chocolate chips, adorable animals, charming dinosaurs, scary Halloween characters. She had them all.
Her cookies is the star of every grandchild’s birthday party, and they are ever-present on holiday gatherings. She was always making tons of them.
She had help from her trusty stand mixer: a fiery red Artisan from KitchenAid.
With an Artisan by your side, you can indulge your cookie fascination.
How Well Does The Artisan Mix?
Before you ever use your new KitchenAid Artisan, check the beater to bowl clearance even though KitchenAid says that it has been factory-adjusted. Several owners found out that it is not.
Here’s how to check and adjust it:
- Insert the beater into the shaft.
- Drop a dime into the empty bowl.
- Turn the mixer on and set the speed lever to “2”. The beater should be able to move the coin ¼ in. to ½ in. with each sweep. If not adjust the beater height (next steps)
- Tilt the motor head and locate the adjustment screw at the bottom.
- Turn the screw counter-clockwise to raise the beater or clockwise to lower it.
- Lower the head.
- Repeat Step 3.
- Adjust and test until you get the correct clearance
Setting the correct beater to bowl clearance is key to getting thorough and even mixing on a KitchenAid stand mixer.
I can almost hear you thinking: Will the correct beater to bowl clearance eliminate scraping?
It won’t. But, it will be reduced to about once or twice.
I strongly recommend a Flex Edge beater which has flexible scrapers on the side. It effectively reaches the side and bottom of the bowl, which will save you time and the hassle of scraping. It’s a game changer.
- Eliminates scraping.
- Saves time.
- Prevents damage to mixer bowl.
As of 2023-12-09 at 12:24 (More info)
Please do not attempt to scrape the bowl while the mixer is running. Stop the mixer first and tilt the head.
Does It Walk on The Counter?
Does it shake, wobble, walk, run? It does with difficult dough.
The locking pin may also loosen when the head shakes. Hence, avoid using it for very stiff dough.
One more thing…
Is it quiet or noisy?
Not really quiet, but it’s not annoying. Lets’ just say you can use it with baby sleeping in another room.
What Accessories Are Included With The Artisan Stand Mixer?
Included in your purchase of a KitchenAid Artisan are the following accessories:
- Coated Flat Beater for beating, blending and general mixing.
- Aluminum Wire Whisk for incorporating air into cream, butter and egg whites to create a fluffy texture.
- Coated C-Dough Hook for kneading dough for bread and pizza.
- Stainless Steel 5-quart Bowl with handle
- Plastic Splatter Shield guards against splashes and flour clouds.
The bowl with a handle is easy to manage and move around. It reduces fatigue on the wrist, hand and fingers, especially, when the bowl is almost full.
Transferring batter from a bowl with no handle and scraping stuff that clings to its wall can be annoying. The bowl swings, and you have to hold tighter which puts more pressure on your wrist and hand.
The pouring shield has made my baking life easier.
I don’t have to worry about ingredients falling into the turning beater and sending splatters flying.
But, some users are irked that it does not fit snugly on the bowl and just sits on top. It dislodges with a slight bump, which is true and which is one more thing to mind.
There is a reason for the loose fit: it is quicker to remove and put it back when you have to scrape batter off the bowl. Imagine if it fits tightly. You have to use both hands to remove it and put it back.
You can always choose not to use it.
A glass bowl with graduations can be bought separately. Here is a list of all KitchenAid stand mixer bowls which also indicates the mixer models they are suited for.
What Attachments Are Available?
If you haven’t already heard…
…this is not just a stand mixer.
You can turn it into an ice cream maker, a pasta maker, a grain mill, a juicer, a fruit and vegetable slicer, etc.
And now you’re thinking….
How is that possible?
The answer is: With KitchenAid attachments.
Here is a complete list and detailed description of all stand mixer attachments from KitchenAid.
Attachments are not included with a stand mixer purchase.
Each is sold separately, which gives you the option to spend for what you want, need or have the budget for. You can always buy more later if your needs change or when you have the money to spare.
There are some, like the various pasta attachments, that are available in sets if you want to save a bit.
If you already have attachments which you used with another KitchenAid model, they fit the Artisan, too. Kudos to KitchenAid for having the customer in mind.
Wondering how to use attachments with a KitchenAid 5-qt. Artisan stand mixer?
Here’s how it works…
On the front of the motor head is a power hub where all attachments, except the ice cream maker, are coupled. Remove the metal cover to locate it.
Once an attachment is fitted securely, switch the machine on as you would when using it as a mixer.
What speeds should you use with each attachment?
The answer is in the Attachments Speed Guide Table…
Attachments Speed Guide
Attachment Speed Setting
|Can Opener||Speed 2|
|Citrus Juicer||Speed 6|
|Food Grinder||Speed 4|
|Fruit/Vegetable Strainer||Speed 4|
|Grain Mill||Speed 10|
|Ice Cream Maker||STIR|
|Pasta Maker||Speed 10|
|Rotor Slicer/Shredder||Speed 4|
How Do You Care For And Clean This Mixer and Its Accessories?
This is important…always clean the mixer bowl before using your KitchenAid Artisan series for the first time. Why?
A number of people who bought this mixer complained that their batters or dough turned grey the first time they used it. And, several washings and scrubbings with soap and water proved futile.
The bowl is covered with a special coating which does not go away with ordinary washing.
So what’s the solution? How do you get rid of the blackish stuff?
Scrub it using one of the following:
- A mixture of lemon juice and salt;
- Baking soda paste;
- BarKeeper’s Friend.
Customers lament that this instruction is not in the manual or the box.
Cleaning your stand mixer after each use is important if you want it to serve you for long.
A damp towel will do the job. Wipe down the body and the accessory shaft. Always unplug the unit before cleaning.
Hate hand washing? Don’t worry. All accessories, except the wire whip, are dishwasher safe.
How Tall and Heavy is the KitchenAid 5-Quart Artisan Mixer?
It is approximately 8 ¾ inches wide, 13 15/16 inches high and 14 1/8 inches deep.
Its height reaches 17 ½ inches when the head is raised. Take this into account if you are going to place this underneath cabinets.
Moving it around is not a pretty prospect, except, perhaps, if you need to free up counter space on a rare occasion. It’s better to set a permanent space for it because it is heavy (26 pounds).
Cord length is approximately 45 inches.
What Colors Are Available For The KitchenAid Mixer Artisan Series?
Dressed in gorgeous and vivid colors, you can’t help but covet it if you happen to see them lined up on display.
It is one of the most wished-for kitchen gadgets on brides’ wedding registries.
It’s not hard to see why. It has the widest selection of shades: bold reds, fiery pinks, dainty greens, sunny yellows; and, KitchenAid releases a color of the year each year.
One of the most sought-after is the pink KitchenAid Artisan. Other popular colors are ice blue, grape, onyx and white. See all Artisan colors now.
Oil leaking from the motor head is one of the most common issues in years past, but which very rarely crops up now. It indicates that lubricating oil has separated, because of either using the mixer heavily or non-use for extended periods.
I have, indeed, read reviews that oil leaked when they used their Artisan mixer after not running it for months or years.
The solution? Let your mixer rest. Or, run it on Speed 10 for 2 minutes at least once a week to keep the grease lubricating the parts and not separating.
If you think that a significant amount of oil had leaked, the manufacturer’s threshold is ¼ cup (not sure if anybody would bother to measure it), or the leak is frequent or when in doubt, call an authorized repair center.
Mixing times in KitchenAid’s recipe guide are reduced, because its stand mixers complete the job fast.
To avoid over mixing, KitchenAid recommends cutting mixing time in half if your recipe is not adapted to a KitchenAid stand mixer.
Pros and Cons of the KitchenAid Artisan
- Suits the needs of the typical household
- Suitable for both beginners and experienced bakers
- Can handle a wide range of mixing tasks
- Planetary mixing action ensures efficient mixing
- Direct drive motor for higher efficiency and speed control
- Bowl with comfort handle for easy control and reduced hand and arm fatigue
- Pouring shield reduces splatter
- Available in stunning colors
- Can be fitted with several attachments
- Adjustable beater to bowl clearance
- Easy tilt-head
- Not for frequent use on stiff dough
- Cannot scrape or mix content while mixer is running
- Grey coating on the bowl of some units
There are thousands, and still going up, of KitchenAid Artisan stand mixer reviews on Amazon. A huge percentage are positive (5 and 4 stars), while there are only a tiny percentage of dissatisfied customers.
The top compliments are:
- Ease of Use. Many customers say the Artisan KitchenAid is easy to use. They praise its straightforward operation which makes it suitable for both beginners and experienced bakers.
- Versatility. Customers highly rates the Artisan’s flexibility for a wide range of mixing tasks: batters, whipped cream, cookie dough, bread dough, etc. It’s utility suits bakers of any skill level
- Adequate for Home Baking. Home bakers consider the 5-quart capacity sufficient for their various baking activities. They see it as a reliable choice for personal use.
- Versatile Attachments. Buyers are delighted that the Artisan can be fitted with a number of attachments for other cooking tasks.
- Attractive Design. Customers admire the KitchenAid Artisan mixer’s sleek design which adds dazzle to their kitchens. With tons of eye-catching colors to match any kitchen theme, it is both a utility and a design piece.
The top complaints about the Artisan are:
- Not Ideal for Kneading Dough. A few customers complain that it is not effective for kneading dough. They say the dough climbs quickly up the dough hook.
- Durability Issues. Some buyers complain of oil leaking from the mixer’s head. A few claim they received lemons.
- Expensive. Some of those wanting to buy an Artisan lament that they cannot afford it.
Should You Bring Home A KitchenAid Artisan?
A stand mixer cuts prep time in half allowing you to churn out more goodies or use the time saved on other tasks. And, think of the effort you’ll save from mixing and kneading. You can use that energy somewhere else.
In the arena of stand mixers, the KitchenAid Artisan 5 quart stand mixer has hogged the limelight for years.
What’s the secret to its enduring popularity?
The answer? It is the sweet spot in the arena of stand mixers, including KitchenAid’s.
It is neither so small and basic nor is it too big and powerful. Because of that, it meets the needs of most households, beginners and hobby bakers.
Aesthetic does play a big role. The Artisan is sleek and stylish. You can’t help but swoon over how that fiery pink will look so good in your kitchen, or how that sunny yellow will brighten it up.
Is it worth the fame?
It is. If your baking projects are not demanding: cookies, cakes, pastries, holiday baking and occasional bread making, this stand mixer will serve you well.
The Artisan is not just a mixer, but a multi-purpose kitchen machine that does a myriad of cooking tasks with its ingenious attachments.
Imagine the freshest pasta, homemade savory sausages, delectable ice cream and so much more.
Imagine having control over the ingredients that you use and what you feed your family.
Is it worth your money? It is if it meets your needs. As long as you use it within its limits, keep it clean, and follow recommendations, it will serve you long and well.
Do you think the KitchenAid Artisan lives up to its name? Do you own one? We’d be glad to know of your experience. Share your thoughts in the comment section below.