Kenwood Titanium Chef Baker XL: first-look review
If you're after a serious stand mixer the Kenwood Titanium Chef Baker XL makes light work of all mixing, kneading and whipping tasks.
- two bowls included, built-in scales, lots of attachments, easy-lift head, powerful motor
- expensive, large footprint
Kenwood is one of the biggest names in the stand mixer market. Indeed, the hotly contested KitchenAid vs Kenwood stand mixer debate is one we've looked into ourselves. They're a brand known for constant innovation and the Kenwood Chef Baker XL is no exception. This model comes equipped with two bowls (five-litre and seven-litre), a balloon whisk, dough hook, K-beater and creaming beater.
Unique to Kenwood’s top-range stand mixers, this model comes with inbuilt scales that measure in both pounds and grams. This modern but classic machine comes equipped with a powerful 1200w motor.
- Read our full guide to the best stand mixers.
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Unboxing the Kenwood Titanium Chef Baker XL
Straight out of the box, this sure is a hefty machine. It’s large in size – though not too heavy – and comes with two mixing bowls, making this the ideal choice for keen bakers. The seven-litre bowl is deep and spacious, and offers enough working capacity for mixing up an impressive 120 cupcakes, five loaves of bread or 28 egg whites. It’s easy to lock into place and comes with a handle making it easy to pour every last drop into the tin. Although the five-litre bowl is smaller, it’s still a great size and shape for every type of bake.
This model comes with four different attachments: a balloon whisk, dough hook, K-beater and creaming beater. To keep all your goodies from spilling out, there’s also a splash guard with a feeding chute.
All of the attachments can be popped in the dishwasher – even the balloon whisk, which is a rarity. The attachments are reassuringly weighty and high quality. They also fit into the mixer with ease and feel sturdy when attached.
If you’re intrigued by the versatility of stand mixers, there are 25 further attachments available to purchase for this model.
Kenwood Titanium Chef Baker XL design, features and use
Whilst this model isn’t as high-tech as the Titanium Chef Patissier XL, it’s no less sophisticated. It’s intuitive to use and everything fits into place with ease.
The lever head is lightweight and easy to engage thanks to the LightLift head feature, which tilts the head for you, making it easy to use with messy hands.
You can weigh your ingredients in grams or pounds and the in-built scales are both accurate and responsive. They make life a lot easier, saving on washing up, just make sure to measure carefully so you don’t overshoot.
Unlike the speed controls on KitchenAid stand mixers, this model comes with a dial. There are no pre-set speeds, rather you just need to continue turning the dial to reach the desired speed. The slowest speed is ideal for carefully folding ingredients together and the gradual acceleration is remarkably smooth.
There's very little you can't make in this Kenwood model. For inspiration head over to our triple-tested recipe collections, where you'll find everything from the best chocolate cakes and best birthday cakes to puff pastry dessert recipes, savoury puff pastry recipes, choux pastry recipes and comforting dessert recipes.
How did the Kenwood Chef Baker XL perform?
To put this stand mixer to the test, we used three triple-tested BBC Good Food recipes. We started, of course, with cake, making our gluten-free lemon and orange cake. The beater with silicone scraper brought the cake mix together with ease. It’s hard to find a stand mixer that doesn’t leave some butter and sugar at the bottom of the bowl, but we found that we needed to scrape the sides of the bowl down significantly less than usual. Our cake mix was well mixed, and after baking, well risen too.
We were concerned how the bowl, with its huge 28-egg capacity, would cope with just the three egg whites needed for our chocolate and peanut butter pavlova. Thankfully, there were no problems at all, and the egg whites and sugar were whisked up into glossy, stiff-peaked meringues in no time.
The machine kneaded with ease our enriched dough for Chelsea buns. The dough came together very quickly and we let the machine knead the dough for 10 minutes. It was especially useful to see how long we were kneading for on the timer, both for when we make this recipe again and to ensure we weren’t overworking the dough. After baking, the Chelsea buns were well-risen, light and airy, with a nicely browned exterior.
Is the Kenwood Chef Baker XL easy to clean?
All of the attachments (including the balloon whisk) are dishwasher safe. The bowls can be popped in the dishwasher too. Once the mains are turned off, the body of the stand mixer can easily be wiped down.
What didn't we like about the Kenwood Chef Baker XL?
In truth, there was very little we didn't like about this stand mixer. The price did make us wince a little, but you really do get your money's worth. Plus, Kenwood models are built to last.
This model has quite a large footprint and takes up a decent amount of space on the kitchen counter, so if you've got a smaller kitchen or are planning to keep your stand mixer out on your worktop, you'll need to be happy to sacrifice some space. We also found the head on the mixer opens up tall. Our kitchen cupboards aren't low-hanging by any stretch, but the head touched and hit the cupboard when opened up fully – we'd recommend using this model somewhere with some headspace.
This stand mixer is on the upper end price wise, but if you’re a serious baker, it's well worth the investment. This sturdy but sophisticated machine makes light work of doughs, cake mixes and meringues, and the 25 additional attachments make it a truly versatile piece of kit.
If you’ve got the money to spend, this model does not disappoint. Everything is seamless, from the well-built attachments to the gentle controls. We also loved the integrated scales.
Kenwood Titanium Chef Baker XL specifications
Serial number: KVL85.004SI
Speeds: electronic speed control
Functions: beating, creaming, kneading, whisking
Capacity of bowl: seven-litre bowl and five-litre extra bowl
Warranty: 10 years
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