Pros and Cons Of The KitchenAid Professional And Artisan Stand Mixers

Some people simply make baking their craft. For those who have a passion for the kitchen, there is nothing quite like getting their buttery hands on the latest KitchenAid® Stand Mixer. And for many of these people, one mixer isn’t enough — they want every mix-making tool that KitchenAid has to offer. But which models are worth the splurge? Which ones will do you right in your daily kitchen routine? We’ve got you covered! Here are all of your options, split into two categories: Artisan and Professional Stand Mixers.

Artisan Stand Mixers

The Artisan Series is the most basic of all of the stand mixers that are available. They’re the smallest and lightest, and they come in a variety of colors and finishes. They feature a beater, dough hook, and wire whip in the place of the paddle (which is only offered when you purchase an accessory kit.) These mixers do not have a tilt-back head. However, they come apart easily for cleaning. Although they’re considered less powerful than their bigger brothers and sisters, they are by no means underpowered. They will knead dough, whip cream, and make cookie dough all with ease.

The Artisan comes in two sizes: the Mini (3-quart bowl) and the full-sized 5-quart model. They also come in a variety of finishes: Onyx (black), Empire Red, Hammered Almond, Copper, Pink Ice (white), Vintage Cream, Slate Blue, Cranberry Red and Soft Touch White/Silver. The Mini costs $200 while the full-sized Artisan is $300.

Pros: Smaller than traditional KitchenAid Mixers so they store easily. Lightweight, so it’s easy to lift and lug around. It’s got plenty of power for most kitchen uses.

Cons: The beater is located right under the bowl which makes it difficult to clean without a sponge or brush (or other utensils.) It doesn’t have a tilt-back head—so if you’re just doing one or two things at once, you might get impatient and want to mix away rather than pull the mixer out of your way as you would with a Tilt-Head model.

The Artisan 5-Quart Stand Mixer is available from Williams-Sonoma for $300.

Professional Stand Mixers

If you’re a serious baker and want to invest in a mixer that’s really versatile, then you might want to consider the Professional Series. These models have all the great features of the Artisan series, but they are enhanced with more power and larger bowls. They come with a paddle attachment instead of the beater that comes with an Artisan. However, as with the Artisan models, you will need to purchase an accessory kit when using the Paddle or Dough Hook attachments unless you go all out and buy them separately.

Some models obviously have more power than others. For example, the Professional Series 5500 has a 5-quart bowl, an extra-wide drive shaft, better beater and dough hook attachments, and comes with a tilt-back head. It is slightly more powerful than the Artisan (the 5500 is rated at 750 watts versus 650), but since it’s larger, it weighs more (up to 32 pounds compared to the Artisan’s 25 pounds.) And if you want extra features like the tilt-back head and paddle attachment, you’ll have to pay extra. But if you’re looking for something that will serve your baking needs regardless of what you’re making or how much power you need—this may be your choice.

Pros: More powerful than the Artisan Stand Mixer. It comes with a tilt-back head and paddle attachment (if you chose them.)

Cons: It’s more expensive, more difficult to store (especially if you want your mixer to stand upright on your counter), heavier, and is not as easy to use. The tilt-back head may be unimportant to some, but it raises and lowers with one lever that makes use easier in my opinion. The mixer also requires more attachments when all you’re looking for is a basic model (like the beater or dough hook. You must also purchase a bowl unless you get the Professional 600 series or 6100 which already come with a bowl included.

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There are five different models in the Professional Series: The Professional 5-Quart Stand Mixer comes with a tilt-back head and paddle attachment and costs $400. If you don’t want the tilt-back head, it’s available without it for $350. The other three models are all tilt-head models (all of them 6-quart): The Professional 600 Stand Mixer costs $475 without the tilt-back head, but if you want that feature, it’s still $475. The Professional 6500 Stand Mixer costs $550. The Professional 6100 Stand Mixer has a smaller 3.5-quart bowl and costs $500.

The Professional 5-Quart Stand Mixer is available from Williams-Sonoma for $400.

Other Unique Models To Consider:

The Artisan Series comes in two additional models that won’t be covered here: the Artisan 14-Cup and the Artisan Mini. Both come in Soft Touch White/Black with Pearl (white/black) accents and are also available in a variety of colors (like the other Artisan models). These models are priced at $1,000 and $999 respectively. The Mini will be the only mixer covered in this article that does not come with a bowl.

And then there are the Professional Series. There are six different models in this series, but only three that I feel comfortable including because they represent a more basic or basic-plus design: the Professional 600 Stand Mixer—which comes with a tilt-back head and paddle attachment—costs $475 and is not sold in stores; the Professional 6500 Stand Mixer costs $550, and the Professional 6100 Stand Mixer has a smaller 3.5-quart bowl and costs $500.

These models are my favorite to consider for beginners because they’re one step more powerful than the Artisan 5-, 6-, or 7-quart models but are smaller in size. Still, they’re not as small as the Mini that’s only $200. I believe a mixers this small will not hold up to years and years of use, no matter where you put it—so the Professional Series is still going to be your best option if you have limited counter space and don’t want a mixer that’s too large.

You can buy these mixers only through Williams-Sonoma. And if you were to purchase the Professional 600 model with tilt-back head, you’d have to buy the mixer and bowl separately for $550.

So which mixer is right for you? Again, it really depends on your needs and your budget. Here is a quick comparison of each model in each series.

Artisan Stand Mixers Comparison Chart

Model Capacity Weight Price Artisan 5-Quart 5-quart 25 pounds $300 Artisan 6-Quart 6-quart 28 pounds $350 Artisan 7-Quart 7-quart 30 pounds $400 Professional 600 3.5-Quart 6-pound 25 pounds $475 Professional 650 3.5-Quart 6-pound 32 pounds $550 Professional 6500 3.5-Quart 6-pound 36 pounds $550 Professional 6600 3.5-Quart 8-pound 28 pounds $600

The Artisan Series is the best choice for people who are looking for bigger and faster action but who don’t need a lot of power or bowl size—especially if you’re new to baking and don’t have a lot of counter space. These stand mixers cannot be stored inside a cabinet because they’re too large and heavy, but beyond that, they’re easy to use and are made from a variety of color choices if you want to add a little style to your kitchen.

All of the Artisan Stand Mixers come with a standard flat beater and dough hook, but other accessories are available for purchase if you want them. The newer models—the Artisan 5-Quart, 6-Quart, and Professional 600 series (with tilt-back head)—all come with a pouring shield which is sold separately for $5 on the other models (except the Mini.) And all stand mixers come with an instruction booklet. The Professional 5-Quart Stand Mixer is different from the rest of the Artisan models—it comes with a tilt-back head, but still comes with a paddle attachment. It’s also $400.

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If you’re looking for something that’s easy to use and store, consider the Professional 6500 Series or the Professional 6600 Series. Both are less powerful than their larger counterparts, but they’re smaller (and cheaper) than the Professional 600 Series. If you want an Artisan Model but don’t want to pay for the tilt-back head, consider getting the Mini instead of another Artisan model. It’s only $200 and comes with a plug-in cord to get you started.

If you have limited counter space but still want a powerful model for your baking needs, consider the Professional 6100 Stand Mixer or the Professional 6600 Stand Mixer. Both models come with a smaller 3.5-quart bowl and are more powerful than their larger counterparts, but they’re on the more expensive side (about $400-$550.) If you’re looking to budget, consider the Professional 650 or 600 models which are both only $250 and $175 respectively.

The Professional Stand Mixer models are cool because they’re a step up from the Artisan series but cost about $100 less. They’re made for people who want the power of a mixer and yet still want to store it in a cabinet. Even though the Professional 600 Series is my favorite, I’m also a fan of the Professional 6500 and 6600 models because I like how small and compact they are—but none of these mixers can be stored in a cabinet. For this reason, you might consider purchasing one of the Artisan models if you’re looking for something that’s easy to store and that has enough power for smaller jobs.

The Professional 5-Quart Stand Mixer is the best model in this series—it comes with a tilt-back head, has a glass bowl and pouring shield included, and it’s $300. The Professional 650 Stand Mixer comes with a glass bowl, but it’s not tilt-back (so you can’t access the top of the mixer) cost $250.

The Professional 600 Stand Mixer with tilt-back head costs $475—you’ll have to purchase a bowl separately for around $20-$50 (depending on which one you choose). It also comes with a flat beater and dough hook.

The Professional 6500 Stand Mixer is a great choice because it’s only $550 and it doesn’t have a bowl attachment, so you can find the right one that fits your needs. Or you can purchase the Professional 6100 Stand Mixer with a smaller 3.5-quart bowl and plug-in cord for $500. The Professional 6600 models are very similar to the Professional 6100 models but they’re more powerful, they don’t have a cord, and they’re more expensive (around $600-$625.

Other Reviews of Stand Mixer Operators

The Artisan 5-Quart Stand Mixer is my favorite choice—you can find it at Williams-Sonoma for $300. The Professional 600 Series with tilt-back head costs $475. If you have limited counter space, the Professional 6500 Series or the Professional 6600 Series may be a better option for you. All these models are more powerful and smaller than their Professional 600 and 650 counterparts, so if you want to save some cash and still have a large mixer that’s easy to store, these are your best bets.

Is Artisan better than professional?

I was asked this question on a recent blog post and it warrants a longer answer than I have room for in the comments section. The short answer is that I wouldn’t say Artisan is better than professional—it’s just different. First, let’s talk about power. The Artisan series all come with the standard flat beater and dough hook attachments with the exception of the Mini which comes with a 1-speed hand mixer instead. The Professional series comes with all of these attachments plus an additional mixing paddle, 2 wire whip attachments, and “pouring shield.” So while they may seem very similar in that they both mix and fold in ingredients equally well, there are actually some major differences in how you can use each mixer.

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First, let’s just talk about the flat beater and dough hook—they’re interchangeable between the two series. You can use them interchangeably in both series if you want (especially if you don’t want to invest in attachments and want to save some cash.) However, the Professional 600 Series comes with extra attachments that let you do things with the flat beater and dough hook that Artisan doesn’t include. You can get whisks and a second set of beaters.

Is KitchenAid discontinuing the Artisan series?

No, there are no plans to discontinue the Artisan series—but that doesn’t mean that KitchenAid isn’t trying to give you more choices this year. Check out these other new accessories. These new accessories can really make a difference in how you use your mixer. For example, the KitchenAid Touch ‘n Turn Artisan Mixer Stand Mixer KSM155 will let you mix bowl ingredients without having to remove it from the base mixer. You can work on the counter or even move it if need be (no more extra space required.)

What makes this one better than the Professional 600 Series?

I would say that it’s just faster. It comes with the 4.5-quart bowl which means you can make larger batches more quickly and easily. However, it’s not necessarily better—just different. It also has a powerful 325-watt motor which is 30 watts more than the Professional 600 Series—this means that it can do more work in less time and it can get the job done better. If you need to whip up large batches of frosting, cookie dough, or cake batter, this mixer will get the job done faster if you don’t want to wait for it to get through a 5-quart recipe of something like bread dough before baking.

What is the difference between custom and Artisan KitchenAid mixers?

The custom mixer comes with a 5-quart bowl, flat beater, dough hook, pouring shield and splash guard. The Artisan mixer comes with the 4.5 quart bowl, flat beater and dough hook—there are no other attachments included.

Is there a difference between the KitchenAid pro series and the Artisan series?

Yes. First of all, the Artisan series is made with die-cast metal while the Professional Series is made of stainless steel. There are also quite a few differences in power—the Professional 600 Series has a 325 watt motor while the Artisan mixers have 250 watts.

What is the difference between artisan and heavy duty KitchenAid?

Both the Artisan and Heavy Duty stand mixers have the same power, speed, and durability. The difference lies in the cosmetics of each mixer—the Artisan line comes in a wide variety of trendy colors and has smaller mixing bowls, while the Heavy Duty line has stainless steel bodies in traditional mixer colors like red and white.

Is there a difference between Professional 600 Series Artisan and Professional Series?

The Professional 600 Series is an upgrade over the Professional Series. The Professional Series is heavier-duty than Artisan—the motor has more power (325 watts vs 500 watts) and it has more attachments included with it (more accessories allow you to get more tasks done without stopping to change beaters or other attachments.


There are many reasons why you would want a stand mixer. If you’re baking a lot and have the counter space to store it, the Professional 600 Series is an awesome choice. Or, if you need extra mixing power in limited amounts of space, the Artisan series may be what you’re looking for. I personally opted for the KitchenAid 6100 Stand Mixer—it has all of the attachments that I use (including dough hooks—which means I can bake up to 2 dozen cookies at once!) and it fits perfectly on my kitchen counter. The best advice I can give is to read up on the different models from KitchenAid’s website and shop around until you find the one that works for you.

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