Best bread maker: for the perfect homemade loaf

Pick up the best bread maker for your kitchen with our roundup of machines that can make seeded, gluten-free, and even pizza dough

best bread maker
(Image credit: Getty)

You simply can't beat a freshly cooked loaf of bread. With the best bread maker, you'll be able to wake up to that fresh bread smell every single morning. Bread is simple and convenient to make from scratch, but with a bread maker, you won't even need to rely on the best stand mixer to knead your loaf for you. Simply add in your ingredients and press a button to pick your desired mode. 

Whether you're a fan of sourdough or rye, prefer a white loaf, seeded, or wholemeal batch, you'll be able to bake whichever type of bread takes your fancy. Many of the best bread makers are also capable of making delicious cakes and even jam and yogurt. Yep, a whole plethora of breakfast foods can be yours with the help of this handy kitchen helper. 

What is the best bread maker?

The Cuisinart Compact Automatic Bread Maker is our pick of the best breadmaker. It has 12 modes, and a 13-hour delay timer. 

Want to keep looking? Just scroll to see more of our bread maker reviews from brands such as Breville and Bella.

The 5 best bread makers

Cuisinart bread maker

(Image credit: Cuisinart)

1. Cuisinart Compact Automatic Bread Maker

Best bread maker: bake whatever you please

Specifications

Dimensions: 10.25 x 13.25 x 11.25 inches
Cooking modes: 12
Color settings: 3
Loaf sizes: 1, 1.5, and 2 lbs

Reasons to buy

+
Interior light and viewing window
+
12 cooking modes
+
Nonstick pan

Reasons to avoid

-
No nut dispenser

Why do we love the Cuisinart Compact Automatic Bread Maker? It's easy to use and simple to keep clean. If you want a bread maker that can make lots of different bakes, this is the best bread maker for you. In fact, we rate it the best bread maker you can buy.

Modes
As well as having 12 different bread modes – including french or artisan bread – this machine has three loaf sizes and lets you choose your crust color. The display will show your chosen settings. 

Timer
A 13-hour digital timer allows you to choose when to have your loaf ready. The viewing window will allow you to look in as your bread cooks, and there is even a button to help you illuminate the inside of the machine. 

Compact design
You can take advantage of the vertical baking pan with this compact bread maker. It will sit pretty on any kitchen counter, and the nonstick bread pan will allow you to tip the bread out easily from the pan when it's finished. 

Bella bread maker

(Image credit: Bella)

2. Bella Pro Series 2-lb. Bread Maker

Best budget bread maker: with 15 settings to choose from

Specifications

Dimensions: 13.5 x 13.25 x 10.4 inches
Cooking modes: 15
Loaf sizes: 1.5 or 2lbs
Color settings: 3

Reasons to buy

+
Fastbake function
+
Delay timer
+
60-minute keep warm mode

Reasons to avoid

-
Display is a little basic

This bread maker from Bella does all the hard work for you – simply add the ingredients, pick your programme and press start. 

Modes
There are a variety of bakes to choose from – preparing dough for bread rolls, pizza and cake as well as making jam. But what makes this design stand out is the the Quick Bread function that produces a fresh loaf in just 2 hours. 

We like the sound of that. It also has a choice of three crust settings so you can really personalise your loaf. What else? You can keep an eye on your bake using the clear viewing window 

Timer
The 13-hour delay timer is really handy. This way you'll wake up to fresh, warm bread every day... The 60-minute keep-warm mode will also ensure that you don't miss out on a fresh, warm slice. 

Brevillea bread maker

(Image credit: Breville)

3. Breville BBM800XL Custom Loaf Bread Maker

Best smart bread makers: this one is for the professionals

Specifications

Dimensions: 9.8 x 15.7 x 13.9 inches
Cooking modes: 13
Loaf sizes: 1, 1.5, 2, and 2.5lbs
Color settings: 3

Reasons to buy

+
Advanced features
+
Custom recipes
+
Comprehensive manual
+
Large capacity

Reasons to avoid

-
Expensive

This bread maker from Breville (known as Sage in the UK) oozes style and capabilities which would really appeal to the more confident baker.

Super smart interface
This smart-looking bread maker has smart features too. The 'turn' and 'confirm' dial makes it easy to choose between the 60 different settings and gets you started baking in seconds. 

The clever interface then computes the correct temperature and baking time each time you make a selection, and displays the major variables on one easy-to-read screen.

Collapsible blade
Once the bread maker has finished kneading the dough, the blade collapses before baking so it maximises the amount of usable bread without any dents in the crust.

Oster bread maker

(Image credit: Oster)

4. Oster Expressbake Breadmaker

Best fast bread maker: fresh bread in under an hour

Specifications

Dimensions: 12 x 11 x 11 inches
Cooking modes: 12
Loaf sizes: 1, 1.5, and 2lbs
Color settings: 3

Reasons to buy

+
14 settings
+
Makes bread in under an hour
+
Jam mode

Reasons to avoid

-
Buttons can be hard to operate

Looking for an easy to use, compact bread maker that has lots of features? Bingo. This bread maker from Oster Expressbake Breadmaker is our best bread maker that can make a loaf in under an hour

Modes
We love the sheer variety of loaves this bread maker can produce – crusty white, mixed seed, bagel dough, European... As mentioned, this machine is super easy to 

use thanks to its delay timer, which proves really handy for baking a loaf exactly when you want it. You can pick the speedy mode to make a fresh batch of bread in just 50 minutes. 

Looks
With a modern, compact design and the fact that it’s easy to clean, it really is a true winner. We definitely wouldn't mind having this on our kitchen worktop.

Zojirushi Home Bakery Virtuoso Plus

(Image credit: Zojirushi)

5. Zojirushi Home Bakery Virtuoso Plus

Best bread maker for large loaves: two dough paddles for jumbo bakes

Specifications

Dimensions: 10.5 x 18 x 12.88 inches
Cooking modes: 15
Loaf sizes: 2lbs
Color settings: 3

Reasons to buy

+
Two kneading paddles
+
Dual heaters
+
Classic loaf shape pan

Reasons to avoid

-
Rapid setting isn't that fast

The Zojirushi Home Bakery Virtuoso Plus has twice the kneading power of other bread makers, with a pan that resembles traditional shop-bought bread, 

Very capable
This bread machine really can cater for all; it has modes for vegan, gluten-free, and even sugar-free loaves for all sorts of diest. You can even choose your favourite crusts by selecting the desired browning level.

Speciality mode
Amongst the 15 modes you can follow a homemade mode with custom settings for specific recipes. The recipe book has instructions for pasta dough and even meatloaf. 

What to consider when buying a bread maker

Automatic functions

Look for automatic functions to make life easier. Not all models are automatic; some require the dough to be kneaded and added to the bread maker while others simply require you to add the separate ingredients while the machine does the rest. 

Versatility

Do you want to be able to create different types of bread and styles of loaf? Think about how versatile you want it to be as the higher the price tag, the more features and functions the bread maker will offer. 

Some designs come with pizza and pasta functions and can help prepare cakes and jams too, while others have a gluten-free setting.

Ease of use and storage

Check if the parts are dishwasher-safe and think about where you’re going to store it when not in use. If it’s going to sit on the worktop, measure up the space available and check dimensions before you buy as you want to be sure it will fit snugly without taking up too much space or hanging over the edge of the surface. If it’s going to be stashed away in a cupboard, check how high the shelf space is to ensure the machine isn’t going to be too big to fit.

Timers

Timers are another must to ensure perfect results, every time. A timer allows you to set the bread maker to start baking at a time to suit you, so you can wake up to warm crusty rolls or have a loaf waiting when you get home from work. Here’s a round up of the best buys with something for every budget.

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Millie joined the Real Homes team in 2021 after working at TopTenReviews as a Staff Writer. She is now the head of all things cooking, working as the Small Appliances and Cooking Editor on the Homes Ecommerce team. Millie is constantly on the hunt for the latest (and best) kitchen appliances, and reviewing these products hands-on. She has passed our five-step certification process to become a verified customer advisor on coffee machines. As a baking enthusiast, Millie’s job at Real Homes is the perfect excuse to cook up an endless supply of snacks. When she’s not in the kitchen though, she loves knitting and exploring London's top food markets. 

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