When most of us think of KitchenAid stand mixers, we envision the process of making that perfect cookie batter, icing, or bread dough. While these are definitely some of my favorite ways to use my mixer, over the years, I’ve also begun to appreciate some of its other amazing capabilities.

There are some optional attachments which can transform your stand mixer into everything from a meat grinder to an ice cream maker. As someone who values kitchen space and hates cluttered cabinets, I’m always looking for new ways to use the trusty appliances I already have.

Sure, I could buy a new meat grinder, an automatic ice cream maker, and a spiralizer; but odds are, if I did, I wouldn’t be able to find any of them in my newly cluttered kitchen cabinets.

That’s one of the main reasons I’ve come to love KitchenAid attachments. They are both a space-efficient and cost-efficient way to get more done using the stand mixer many of us already have.

While buying the optional attachments is a bit of an investment, it’s generally much less expensive than buying stand-alone machines of similar quality and capability, and the attachments are generally fairly compact and easy to store.

So, in pursuit of making the most of my stand mixer, I’ve experimented with quite a few attachments, and now I’d like to share with you a some of my favorites.

1 – KitchenAid FGA Food Grinder Attachment

Uses and Features

  • Meat grinder—this can grind all kinds of meats
  • Grates cheese and vegetables
  • Grinds nuts and dried bread—perfect for homemade breadcrumbs

Who Is This Best For?

This is particularly well-suited to anyone who orders custom-ground meat at the butcher shop. With this food grinder attachment, you can grind your own meat using whichever cuts you prefer.

Some people like to add other ingredients such as onions when making ground meat, and this attachment does a fantastic job with that as well. It’s also a great option for home cooks who avoid buying processed foods.

If you’ve ever looked at the lengthy ingredient list on store-bought breadcrumbs, you know that they contain much more than just dried bread. With this easy-to-use attachment, you can make your own wholesome breadcrumbs, grind your own meats, and even grate fresh vegetables.

What to Consider Before Buying

Although this attachment will definitely make grinding your own foods quicker and easier, it does take some time to clean afterwards. Especially when used for meats, it requires a thorough cleansing after each use. So, before purchasing, make sure that you are willing and able to set aside some time for these tasks.

Final Thoughts

While not everyone has the desire or time to grind their own meats, or make their own fresh breadcrumbs, this is wonderful for those of us who spend more time in the kitchen.

As a home baker, I love using my KitchenAid stand mixer for kneading dough; and then, a couple days later, it’s great to be able to snap on this attachment to turn leftover homemade bread into dried breadcrumbs.

2 – Kitchen Aid KSM1APC Spiralizer Attachment with Peel, Core, & Slice

Uses and Features

  • Creates perfectly spiralized fruits and vegetables for salads or “noodles”
  • Quickly peels, cores, and slices: This is particularly great for fruits such as apples which can be peeled, cored, and sliced into thin rounds for everything from school lunches to apple chips.
  • Dishwasher-safe

Who Is This Best For?

This spiralizer attachment is particularly great for anyone who is looking to add more fruits and vegetables to their diet.

While, many of us want to eat healthier, the time it takes to prepare nutritious foods can sometimes be a hindrance. This attachment makes things both easier and quicker.

What to Consider Before Buying

The main thing to consider is whether you will use a spiralizer frequently enough to make this a practical purchase. If you want to make vegetable noodles (with zucchini or butternut squash, for example), this is a great investment. Trying to do this by hand, with a knife, is very difficult and time-consuming.

Final Thoughts

This is a great KitchenAid attachment for anyone who wants to make preparing nutritious foods—particularly fruits and vegetables—quicker and easier.

3 – KitchenAid KICA0WH Ice Cream Maker Attachment

Uses and Features

  • Making ice cream, gelato, and sorbet
  • Can make up to 2-quarts of ice cream at a time

Who Is This Best For?

This ice cream maker attachment is perfect for anyone who loves ice cream, so that means many (or most!) of us. It’s particularly great for those who like to know exactly what ingredients go into their foods.

Making your own ice cream, you can use all-natural ingredients and avoid artificial flavors and preservatives. If that sounds good to you, this is an attachment to definitely consider.

This attachment is also great for those who like to create their own ice cream flavors with unique combinations; experimenting with this can be really fun!

What to Consider Before Buying

As always, you’ll want to consider how often you’ll actually use this attachment, in order to decide whether it’s worth splurging on. At the same time, consider how pricey all-natural ice cream can be to purchase at the grocery store.

In the long run, if you use this regularly, it can actually save you money while simultaneously helping you to create delicious ice cream made from wholesome ingredients.

Another thing to note is that this isn’t quite as simple to use as a dedicated ice cream maker. If you make ice cream quite often, and want the simplest possible machine, you may want to consider a regular ice cream maker.

But, if price and space considerations are important to you, this is a great choice because it takes up much less room in the kitchen cabinet and is less expensive than automatic ice cream makers of similar quality.

Final Thoughts

If you’ve never tasted homemade ice cream before, prepare to be amazed. With the help of this attachment, you can transform your raw ingredients into the ice cream, sorbet, or gelato of your choice in about 25 minutes.

4 – KitchenAid KSMPEXTA Gourmet Pasta Press Attachment with 6 Interchangeable Pasta Plates

Uses and Features

  • Makes homemade pasta in six different shapes: spaghetti, both large and small macaroni, rigatoni, fusilli, and bucatini
  • Contains a wire-cutter which allows you to choose the length of your pasta
  • In addition to the pasta press, this has six discs for creating the different pasta shapes, a pusher, and a cleaning tool

Who Is This Best For?

Even the most die-hard bread bakers don’t always want to venture into making pasta from scratch, and that’s understandable—it can be quite intimidating at first. But, for those who’ve decided to take the plunge into pasta-making, this pasta press attachment is a great product.

While it still might take a bit of trial and error, you’ll likely find that this formidable attachment is quite useful.

What to Consider Before Buying

Since this is one of the pricier KitchenAid attachments, you’ll definitely want to think things over a bit before purchasing. If you’ve never attempted making homemade pasta before, you might want to experiment a bit with rolling out noodles by hand, just to see if the process appeals to you.

Once you are confident that making homemade pasta is something you enjoy, though, this is definitely a product worth splurging a bit on. It makes the process much easier and allows you to make pasta in a variety of useful shapes and sizes.

Final Thoughts

Grocery store dried pasta is actually quite good—and tends to have a fairly simple and natural ingredient list—so, not everyone will feel the need to make pasta from scratch. With that said, making your own homemade pasta can be truly amazing, and this attachment is one of the best pasta presses around.

If you’ve decided to experiment with making homemade pasta, or you are ready for a more capable machine to help you along, this is a product that you should absolutely consider.

 

So, which KitchenAid attachment is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below.

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