Ask Happy: What Kind of Bread Machine Do You Recommend

From Lindsay:

I am hoping to do more from-scratch cooking in 2011. I was wondering what brand of bread maker you would recommend? I’d like to do our own bagels, english muffins and bread if possible and more than anything, I’d like the bread maker to mix, knead and raise the dough for me! Thank you!

Great question Lindsay! When we made the switch to grinding our own grain in 2005, I knew that I needed a quality bread machine or I wouldn’t have the time to make bread. I researched and read numerous articles online about the best bread machine for whole wheat baking and decided on the Zojirushi BBCCX20 Home Bakery Supreme Bread Machine.

I chose the Zojirushi because I wanted to own a bread machine with a name I couldn’t pronounce. Just kidding, I chose it because it had the best reviews for kneading whole grain bread. Many of the less expensive machine’s motors fail because of kneading whole grains. I also liked the Zojirushi because it has an extensive custom setting menu, so you can set your own knead, rise, and bake times for recipes. Finally, the loaf looks like a regular loaf of bread, not a tower, and since I knew I would be using it to bake in the summer, I thought a regular “looking” loaf of bread would be better for my family.

The downside of the Zojirushi is the price. It costs around $200 which is 3 to 4 times more expensive than most other machines. I have been using the Zojirushi for 5 and a half years almost every day and it still works like it is brand new. I’ve never used another machine so frequently so I don’t have anything to compare it to, but I would buy another one if I needed to replace it.

If you look through my bread recipes, you will lots of photos of my Zojirushi covered in dough, flour, or some other ingredient. I am tough on my appliances and I have been very happy with how the Zojirushi has held up over the past five years.


  1. I have a Zojirushi too and I love love love it!! Worth the extra cost because it’s so versatile and won’t wear out if you’re making whole grain breads. I’ve had mine for eight years so it’s an older model but it is still running strong. In fact, I am ordering new beaters this week because that’s the only the only thing that needs replacing or fixing after 8 years. 🙂


  2. I followed Happy’s advice, took the plunge and bought this bread machine 2 years ago and I have really enjoyed it (as has my family! 🙂 ).
    It’s easy to use, easy to clean and definitely works for us.

  3. My mother in law has used her Zojirushi for 15 years and it’s still as good as new! She just bought me one for Christmas, and I love it so far. Great choice!

  4. I’ve also seen lots of breadmakers at my local thrift store, if you wanted to buy one to try out and make sure you like using one before spending so much on an awesome one.

  5. I bought my first machine a couple of months ago, and its a Sunbeam. So far its done well for just basic bread, and only cost $60. I’ve done some whole wheat doughs in it and no problems… yet! 🙂

  6. Just had to tell you that after reading this post yesterday I dusted off my bread machine and made a loaf of bread last night. My kids (11 & 8) thought it was the best bread they every had. It had probably been at least 5 years since I used my breadmaker and it is so simple to use I am now wondering why I haven’t used it in years.

  7. I totally agree. Zojirushi rocks as a breadmaker. The extra money for one of these breadmakers is worth it for the quality.

  8. I’m excited to try making bread again. It’s been awhile. I had problems cutting my bread into appropriate sized slices. Can you recommend a bread slicer? Thanks.

  9. I have gone through 4 bread makers in my 30 years of married life. I get frustrated because I want to do whole wheat bread dough but I have burned them all up.. Its so frustrating. I just can’t justify the cost of the Zojirushi one just yet. Sunbeam didn’t last long at all. I had an Oster and a Breadman and they lasted a little bit longer.. I love making whole wheat raisin bread … and different types of bread and 2nd best bread makers out there Happy?

  10. Zojirushi is good, but it is quite expensive at the same time. Are there any cheaper alternatives out there? I was considering buying the Panasonic SD-YD250.

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