Baking bread at home is increasingly popular, and it’s not surprising; there’s nothing quite like the smell, taste and texture of a freshly baked loaf.
It’s also reassuring to know exactly what ingredients go into the bread you eat, particularly if you’re avoiding or reducing certain ingredients such as gluten or salt, the latter of which is often unnecessarily high in many supermarket breads.
When it comes to cost, the prices of some supermarket breads have increased by up to 30% in less than four years. Baking your own loaf from scratch costs about 43c/100g, compared with 87c/100g for a loaf of Helga’s Seed Sensations Rich Wholegrain − the top scorer in our multigrain bread test.
Please note: This information is current as of June 2010 but can still be used as a useful guide today.
So if you use your breadmaker regularly, you can recoup the initial purchase price reasonably quickly. When buying ingredients in bulk and baking from scratch three times per week rather than buying Helga’s, for example, you can recoup the costs in almost six months. The average electricity cost to run these breadmakers three times per week is only about $10 per year at 17 cents per kWh.
For more information on Benchtop appliances, see Kitchen.
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Brands and models tested
- Breville Baker's Oven BBM100
- Breville Baker's Oven BBM300 #
- Breville ikon Baker's Oven BBM600 #
- Cuisinart CBK100A #
- Kenwood BM256 #
- Panasonic SD-257
- Sunbeam Bakehouse Compact BM2100 #
- Sunbeam Bakehouse BM3500S #
- Sunbeam Quantum SmartBake BM7800 #
- Tefal Home Bread OW300170 IP #
# These models are discontinued.
How we test
Making bread from scratch/ pre-mix
CHOICE’s Home Economist, Fiona Mair, makes a 750g loaf of wholemeal multigrain bread from scratch using the manufacturers’ instructions and recipes, and compares performance when making a 1kg wholemeal multigrain loaf from a Laucke pre-mix. Fiona and our resident bread expert visually assess the loaves for even crust colour, shape, uniformity of mixing, grain distribution, crust and crumb texture, looking for small and evenly distributed bubbles.
Ease of use Fiona notes how easy the bread tins are to remove and replace, how easy it is to remove the loaf, the intuitiveness of the controls, labels and features, and how easy the machines are to clean.
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