Easy to attach and detach attachments
Good storage case
Works on thick doughs
Shakes with thick mixes
Loud on high speeds
We purchased the Cuisinart Power Advantage Plus 9-Speed Hand Mixer so our reviewer could put it to the test in her kitchen. Keep reading for our full product review.
Hand mixers like the Cuisinart Power Advantage Plus 9-Speed Hand Mixer take on many of the jobs normally done by a stand mixer. However, hand mixers are mobile, and they take up less kitchen space. For the devoted home baker, hand mixers need to be as effective at mixing bread dough as they are cake mixes. Creaming butter shouldn’t slow them down, but they also need to gradually reach speed, so your mixes don’t splatter. We put the Cuisinart to the test. Keep reading to get our take on this popular brand’s hand mixer and whether it’s worth adding to your kitchen appliances.
Design: Simple one-handed use
One-handed control provides the easiest use of a hand mixer. The Cuisinart fits this mold beautifully. The on/off button is perfectly positioned to be controlled by the thumb. The nearby speed controls are also easy to manage with your thumb. A bright LCD display lets you know what speed level you’re at. Finally, there’s a trigger detach mechanism that’s activated with the same hand that’s holding the hand mixer.
The attachments are all side-specific except for the whisk. The one beater and one dough hook with a lip have to be put into the correct corresponding holes. Pictoral instructions on the mixer let you know which one goes where. As long as you know that’s what you’re supposed to do, the attachments are easy to attach and detach. In fact, the detachment lever ejects the attachments without a problem.
Features: Modern features with extra speeds
Hand mixers aren’t usually packed with extra features, but the Cuisinart has the basics in its best modern version. The LCD display, for example, goes well beyond basic and makes it incredibly easy to track the speed. The mechanical on/off button and trigger release may not be technologically advanced, but the one-handed design accounts for the needs of the modern baker. Serious bakers will appreciate the nine speeds, though casual cooks probably don’t need that many.
The cord can shift and lock in place on either the right or left sides. Whether you’re a righty or lefty, you can mix in comfort. A flat end allows you to set the Cuisinart down in between mixing without the attachments touching the counter. This model has the features you need with the updates that make it simple to use.
This model has the features you need with the updates that make it simple to use.
Performance: Effective but not impressed
The first time we turned on the Cuisinart, it gave off an unpleasant, burnt odor. That’s not completely unexpected the first time you use a new appliance, but this was the only model of the four we tested where this was the case. Undeterred, we tested this model with three recipes: chocolate chip cookies, rice pudding, and bread dough. Each had some mixing challenges that we wanted the Cuisinart to face. Creaming butter, mixing egg yolks, and thick bread dough all have an element that can prove the undoing of some hand mixers.
Our first recipe was cookie dough. For the sake of full disclosure, we forgot to thaw our butter, which meant it came directly from a deep freeze. Though we softened it in the microwave, it was definitely firm when we started. However, hard butter allowed us to really see how the Cuisinart would handle a challenge.
Using the metal beaters, we set to work creaming the butter and sugars. The instruction manual includes recommendations for which speeds to use for different recipes. We went through the lower speeds until we reached the recommended speed of four. Creaming butter proved to be a challenge for the Cuisinart. We had to turn it up to level five and six before it really started the creaming process. At those speeds, it broke through the thick butter and splattered it around the bowl.
The Cuisinart has automatic feedback, which means a feedback mechanism automatically makes power adjustments based on the stress put on the beaters. It’s meant to keep the power up even when mixing thick mixes. We didn’t notice the power being too affected when the doughs got thick.
The Cuisinart may be quieter than the hand mixers of 20 years ago, but it gets loud at the higher speeds. We tested three other hand mixers at the same time. The Cuisinart was on par, noise-wise, with another hand mixer that cost half the price. All that being said, it did cream the hard butter.
It did cream the hard butter.
We tested the whisk attachment for mixing the dry ingredients. Mixing dry ingredients certainly isn’t hard, and the Cuisinart’s single whisk had no problems. The only issue we found with the whisk was the small size. All of the other models we tested had either a double-whisk design or a larger whisk. We also found the short length of the whisk attachment more problematic than when using the beaters and later the dough hooks. It was effective, but a small whisk simply takes longer.
We also noticed that all of the Cuisinart attachments were shorter than the other models we tested. When mixing dry ingredients, in particular, it felt like the short whisk threw up more dust than longer attachments. It didn’t affect the Cuisinart’s ability to mix, but it was a noticeable difference.
Now, back to the cookie dough. The next challenge was adding the dry mix to the creamed ingredients. The beaters worked on a mid-level speed until we’d added about half of the dry ingredients. At that point, we could hear the motor struggling, and the beaters slowed down. We turned up the speed until the dough got too thick. Then, per the instructions, we switched out the beaters for the dough hooks and added the rest of the dry ingredients. At the appropriate speed, the dough hooks did what the beaters couldn’t. However, the whole unit shook, and it was loud.
Rice pudding was the next test. Now, rice pudding may not sound like a challenge, but here’s why we chose it—our recipe called for whipping six eggs. In the past, we’ve found that some single-whisk hand mixers struggle to break egg yolks. The single whisk didn’t break the yolks or suck the eggs through like a double-whisk design. Even with the mixer at the appropriate speed, we chased eggs around the bowl.
Our last recipe was bread dough, which presented many of the same challenges as the cookie recipe. The Cuisinart did well with the dry ingredients—the beaters worked for part of the mixing—but once things got thicker, the dough hooks were the best option.
We also noticed that all of the Cuisinart attachments were shorter than other models.
Overall, the Cuisinart performed well, but it’s louder than comparable models. A little research showed that there had been some durability issues with units losing power after a few months. However, the Cuisinart comes with a three-year limited warranty. Most durability issues fell within the warrantied timeframe. Cuisinart responded in a timely manner with either replacement parts or a new hand mixer, according to customers.
Cleaning and Storage: Everything you need
The Cuisinart also comes with a plastic storage container that holds all of the attachments, including the short spatula that comes with it. We loved that attachments weren’t floating around in our cupboards because we didn’t have to play hide and seek to find them when it was time to cook.
All attachments are dishwasher safe. You have to wipe the motor unit and cord after each use as it is not submersible.
Price: Mid-price model that works but isn’t impressive
The Cuisinart Power Advantage Plus does everything it promises to do. However, it’s louder and shakes more than a comparably priced model. You get a few extra perks like more speeds and the LCD display. However, the noise it makes at high speeds was disappointing, considering how much quieter many hand mixers are these days.
Competition: Attractive other options at both ends of the spectrum
Breville Handy Mix Scraper: The Breville hand mixer that we tested stands out as a high-end, luxury hand mixer. It has nine speeds, a pause button, a count-up timer, and a mixing light. It’s also more expensive than the Cuisinart. However, if you’re a devoted baker who pulls out the hand mixer weekly, it might be worth the extra cash.
Black+Decker Helix Performance Premium Hand Mixer: If you’re looking for a bargain hand mixer, this Black-Decker model we tested is the one for you. It only has five speeds and it gets loud and shakes when mixing thick doughs, but it holds strong and gets the job done. If you don’t care about LCD displays and extra speeds, it’s a better deal with only slightly less performance.
KitchenAid 9-Speed Hand Mixer: The KitchenAid we tested meets the Cuisinart head to head on features, performance, and price. They both shake at higher speeds when doing thick mixes, but the KitchenAid is quieter. It also comes with a smoothie attachment. The only downside with this one is the attachments are stored in a bag rather than a plastic attachment bin.
- Product Name Power Advantage Plus 9-Speed Hand Mixer
- Product Brand Cuisinart
- MPN HM-90BCS
- Price $79.99
- Weight 4 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 8.94 x 3.94 x 8.46 in.
- Power 220 W
- What’s Included Mixer, beaters, whisk, spatula, dough hooks
- Warranty 3-year limited