Author: Maurice Savaryego, M.Sc.Eng. (Learn More)
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Compare Top Bread Makers: Cuisinart, Zojirushi or Breville?
Cuisinart CBK-200 vs. Zojirushi BB-PDC20BA Virtuoso Plus vs. Breville BBM800XL Custom Loaf
Most of us buy ready made bread. We're either too busy to make it ourselves or we think it's too complicated to make it successfully at home. In any case, why bother when there are countless bakeries out there where we can always find our favorite loaf?
With this kind of reasoning, we miss some important advantages of making our own bread. For starters, we can't be hundred per cent sure about what goes exactly into our commercially bought bread. If we want to control what goes into it, then we need to make it ourselves.
Second, when we make our bread we can create all kinds of new tastes and colors by adding healthy ingredients such as nuts and fruits of our choice. Last but not least, nowadays, it’s wrong to think that it is difficult and complicated to succeed making your own bread. The best bread making machines available today almost completely automate the process by controlling the various cycles and guiding the user so no errors can be made.
Each of the three bread machines that we'll be comparing here is equipped with built-in bread recipes that can be invoked from its control panel. Once a bread recipe is chosen, the machine will take over and go through the steps and cycles required by the recipe. It will knead and mix as needed, apply the right temperatures as well as the required various cycle times, and will prompt you for the ingredients to be added at the right time so no errors can be made.
Note also that these machines also include built-in recipes for the preparation of various types of dough for making pastries, pizzas, pasta, etc.
This article will compare Cuisinart CBK-200 Convection, Zojirushi BB-PDC20BA Virtuoso Plus and Breville BBM800XL Custom Loaf bread making machines. These were not just the most popular among Amazon customers at the time this article was written, but they had also received excellent reviews from most Amazon buyers (an average of at least 4 stars each, out of 5 stars!). They are simply the best available bread makers.
Comparing Cuisinart CBK-200, Zojirushi BB-PDC20BA Virtuoso Plus and Breville BBM800XL
The three bread machines selected for comparison are shown below:
The following table compares the various features these bread makers are equipped with (please read the explanation to the table notes that follows for a better understanding of these features):
Cuisinart: It comes with one paddle that is used for kneading and mixing. It can be removed for cleaning.
Zojirushi: Two paddles are installed and operate at the same time for thorough kneading and mixing. They can be removed for cleaning.
Breville: It has one collapsible kneading paddle for dough that thoroughly mixes ingredients then collapses before the bake phase to minimize the hole at the base of the baked loaf. It also comes with a fixed paddle for jam making. The two paddles are not used at the same time and are removable for cleaning.
Cuisinart: A fan circulates air throughout baking cycles for better overall browning and crispier crust.
Zojirushi and Breville have no convection feature.
- Cuisinart loaf sizes: 1.0 lb, 1.5 lb, 2.0 lbs.
- Zojiroshi loaf size: 2.0 lbs.
- Breville loaf sizes: 1.0 lb, 1.5 lbs, 2 lbs and 2.5 lbs.
With Zojirushi, even though the builtin recipes are tailored to bake 2.0 pounds loaves, you can bake smaller loaves using the Home Made course which allows you to modify various settings, but you'll need to experiment both with quantities and associated baking times before you can be assured of successful results.
With all three bread makers considered here, once a bread recipe is chosen from their control panel, the machine goes through the steps and cycles required by the recipe and prompts you for the ingredients to be added at the right time and for anything else that you need to do to successfully complete the recipe.
The LCD screen of each of the three bread makers displays the parameters associated with the recipe selected from the control panel including information related to the completion time. The control panels of each of the three machines are shown and described below:
Description of Cuisinart CBK-200 Control Panel:
Description of Zojirushi BB-PDC20BA Control Panel:
Description of Breville BBM800XL Control Panel
Cuisinart has 16 preprogrammed selections: White/Rapid White/Whole Wheat/Rapid Whole Wheat/French or Italian/Rapid French or Italian/Quick Bread or Cake/Low Carb/Gluten Free/Dough or Pizza Dough/Artisan Dough/Sweet Breads/Rapid Sweet Breads/Jams/Last Minute Loaf/Bake Only. There is no setting for custom recipes.
Zojirushi has 15 preprogrammed selections: White/Whole Wheat/European/Multigrain/Gluten Free/Salt Free/Sugar Free/Vegan/Rapid White/Rapid Whole Wheat/Dough/Sourdough Starter/Cake/Jam and Homemade. Note that the Homemade selection allows to preprogram three more custom made recipes.
Breville has 14 preprogrammed selections: Custom/Basic/Rapid Basic/Whole Wheat/ Rapid Whole Wheat/Gluten Free/Crusty Loaf/Sweet Breads/Yeast Free/Bread Dough/Piazza Dough/Pasta Dough/Bake Only/Jam. The Custom selection allows to create your own recipe. It is used in conjuction with the Modify button to modify default cycle times and temperatures as required by the custom recipe.
All three bread makers have a gluten free recipe setting or selection.
- Zojirushi has the Home Made setting which is used to store up to 3 custom recipes.
- Breville has the Custom selection on the dial which is used to store up to 9 custom recipes.
- Cuisinart does not have this feature.
The three crust shades are: light, medium, or dark.
All three machines have a timer that allows you to add all the ingredients at night and it will start baking in the morning or whenever you set it for. The maximum delay time for Cuisinart is 12 hours, for Zojirushi 13 hours and for Breville 13 hours.
Breville has a special dispenser where fruits, nuts, seeds, chocolate chips, etc. are placed. The machine automatically adds them to the recipe when required.
Cuisinart and Zojirushi use audible tones to prompt the user for adding fruits and nuts when required by the recipe.
The removable bread pan of all three bread makers allows easy cleaning. These pans have a special high quality and extremely durable non-stick coating. It is the best type of coating you can get for safe non-stick baking.
All three machines are equipped with a window that allows you to look in throughout the process to check the progress of the loaf.
The Zojirushi bread maker is made of brushed stainless steel base with black acrylic top.
All three machines come with a user manual and recipes, but the Zojirushi also provides an instructional DVD.
For exact prices, please refer to the Amazon products section below.
For exact Amazon price information for these bread makers, please click below:
Selected Bread Makers on Amazon.
So which of the three bread machines to choose?
- Only Cuisinart has the convection feature during the baking cycle. However, the Zojirushi bread maker has two heating elements, one of which is on the lid. This achieves excellent overall browning and crispier crust.
- Only Zojirushi and Breville have a selection for preparing your own bread recipes. Zojirushi can store up to 3 custom recipes while Breville can store up to 9. Cuisinart does not have this feature.
- Only Breville has a fruits and nuts dispenser and the machine adds fruits and nuts automatically as required. Cuisinart and Zojirushi bread makers prompt the user for adding fruits and nuts.
- Only Breville comes with a paddle that collapses before the bake phase to minimize the hole at the base of the baked loaf.
- Cuisinart has the best warranty (3 years as opposed to 1 year for Breville and Zojirushi) and is the lowest priced of the three.
- Finally, at the time this article was written, Zojirushi and Breville had the best Amazon rating of the three machines, 4.5 stars out of 5! Cuisinart had 4 stars.
Compared Bread Makers on Amazon
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