Best bread makers: 8 star bakers for your kitchen

These best bread makers mean you'll wake up to the heavenly aroma of a freshly baked loaf or you can get creative preparing pizza and pasta

Best bread maker: lifestyle image

Nothing beats a homemade loaf and, with the latest and best bread makers, knocking up some quick rolls for breakfast or a French baguette for lunch couldn’t be simpler. 

They say the smell of freshly baked bread can entice potential buyers as they view your home, too, and it’s true that for many of us, it’s one of our favourite aromas. Making your own bread is healthier, and as well as saving time and money, it’s great fun to spend an afternoon baking with the kids. Before you know it, you’ll be as good as old twinkly eyes Paul Hollywood himself!

Use appliance expert Hayley Gilbert's guide to the best bread makers to bring out your star baker – and don't miss the rest of our kitchen appliance buyer's guides.

What is the best bread maker you can buy?

The best bread maker to spend your hard-earned cash on is the Andrew James Bread Maker Fresh Bake Digital Breadmaker, in our opinion. It has 17 functions, a 1kg capacity and it can keep your bread warm once baked. Read the full review below.

Not got time to read the whole guide? Shop our top three bread makers below along with their cheapest prices. You'll be baking in no time...

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.

The best bread makers

Best bread maker you can buy: Andrew James Bread Maker Fresh Bake Digital Breadmaker

1. Andrew James Bread Maker Fresh Bake Digital Breadmaker

Best bread maker you can buy: this model has 17 functions including gluten free and sourdough, making it the very best bread maker

Specifications
Colour: : Brushed silver
Capacity: : 1kg
Dimensions: : H31cm x W34.7cm D24.6cm
Reasons to buy
+Automatic ingredients dispenser+Delay timer+Keep warm function
Reasons to avoid
-Pricey-Hard to hear the bleeps when it's finished

Buyers love this model as it offers 17 pre-set cycles including gluten free, sourdough, jam and yoghurt. The automatic dispenser lets you add seeds, nuts, raisins or anything else you fancy to your dough and you have the option of baking small, medium or large loaves. You can also delay the start time by up to 15 hours and there’s a 60-minute keep warm function too. Buyers say it’s great for experienced bakers as well as novices and there’s a step-by-step instruction booklet with a selection of recipes to get you started.

Shop more Andrew James products at Amazon

Best automatic bread maker: Morphy Richards FastBake Bread Maker

2. Morphy Richards FastBake Bread Maker

Best automatic bread maker: an automatic bread maker with three crust settings

Specifications
Colour: White
Capacity: 2lb
Dimensions: H30.4cm x W28.3cm x D40cm
Reasons to buy
+Fastbake function+Three loaf sizes+Delay timer
Reasons to avoid
-Small screen makes it difficult to read instructions-Blade is difficult to remove for cleaning

This one does all the hard work for you – simply add the ingredients, pick your programme and press start. Buyers like the fact that 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 fastbake function that produces a fresh loaf in just 50 minutes. It also has a choice of three crust settings so you can really personalise your loaf. Buyers like the option to keep an eye on their bake using the clear viewing window while the 13-hour delay timer is really handy, too. It’s also got a cool-touch body so is safe if you have little ones running around.

Find more bread makers at Very

Best gluten free bread maker: Breadmaker SD-ZP2000KXC by Panasonic

(Image credit: Panasonic)

3. Panasonic SD-ZP2000KXC BreadMaker

Best gluten free bread maker: includes a fruit and nut dispenser as well as crust control

Specifications
Colour: Stainless steel
Capacity: 0.8kg
Dimensions: H42cm x W30cm x D41.5cm
Reasons to buy
+Gluten-free cycle+Jam and compote setting
Reasons to avoid
-No viewing window

One of the best bread makers you can buy mainly for the gluten free setting, this bread maker features a variety of programmes and is easy to use with an automatic yeast dispenser as it adds it at just the right time to let the bread rise. The raisin and nut dispenser is another bonus, and you can even make jams and compotes. Any special dietary requirement is taken care of, as there are modes for different flours and grains such as spelt or rye. Some say it’s hard to clean and the lack of a viewing window is annoying. 

Browse more bread makers at John Lewis & Partners

Best compact bread maker: Kenwood BM260 BreadMaker

(Image credit: Kenwood)

4. Kenwood BM260 BreadMaker

Best compact bread maker: a compact design ideal for smaller spaces

Specifications
Colour: White
Capacity: 1kg
Dimensions: H28cm x W33cm x D30cm
Reasons to buy
+Keep warm function+Cake setting+Makes pizza bases
Reasons to avoid
-No viewing light in window-Dough paddle sometimes gets stuck

Easy to use, this model is nice and compact so is ideal for smaller kitchens. Users love the fresh taste and texture of the bread as well as the pizza bases. It comes with 11 settings and three crust settings along with three loaf sizes and an eco programme that bakes a loaf in under 90 minutes. Use it to make bread, pizza bases and sweet dough as well as cakes when you fancy a treat. Added features include an LCD display and dishwasher-safe parts.

Find more Kenwood products at Amazon

Best budget bread maker: Morphy Richards breadmaker

(Image credit: Morphy Richards)

5. MORPHY RICHARDS 502001 HOMEBAKE BREADMAKER

Best budget bread maker: a great value bread maker with a variety of programmes

Specifications
Colour: White
Capacity: 907g
Dimensions: H28.5cm x W36cm x D26.5cm
Reasons to buy
+13 settings+Programmable timer+Yoghurt option
Reasons to avoid
-Buttons can be hard to operate-Paddle can be difficult to remove from the bread

Buyers love the taste of the bread this machine bakes as well as the variety of loaves it produces – crusty white, mixed seed, cinnamon, raisin… They also raved about how easy it is to use and the delay timer, which proves really handy for baking a loaf exactly when you want it. They also like its modern, compact design and the fact that it’s easy to clean. In our opinion, this is the best bread maker for those on a budget.

Shop more Morphy Richards products at Amazon

Best bread maker for small families:Cookworks BreadMaker

(Image credit: Cookworks)

6. Cookworks BreadMaker

Best bread maker for small families: the perfect option for small bakes, this bread maker is ideal for two

Specifications
Colour: White
Capacity: 0.68kg
Dimensions: H35.4cm x W28.7cm x D25.8cm
Reasons to buy
+Low price+Quiet to operate+Makes great jam
Reasons to avoid
-Small loaf sizes-Limited recipes

If there’s only a couple of you, this model is ideal as it bakes small loaves though buyers say it takes a few attempts to get it right. The 13-hour delay setting is handy for making sure you have your loaf ready when you are. There are 12 pre-set programmes including French bread, wholewheat, quick bread, sweet bread and dessert dough as well as different crust settings and a handy viewing window with LCD display. There’s also a 120-minute fast bake and a keep warm option.

Browse more bread makers at Argos

Best fast bread maker: Russell Hobbs breadmaker

7. RUSSELL HOBBS COMPACT FAST BREADMAKER

Best fast bread maker: this compact model bakes all sorts of bread in no time

Specifications
Colour: Black
Capacity: 0.45kg
Dimensions: H32.2cm x W29cm x D30cm
Reasons to buy
+12 programmable functions+Fast bake options+13-hour delay timer
Reasons to avoid
-The paddle is not non-stick-No measuring tools

This model is a great all-rounder at a good price. The 12 functions allow you to bake everything from basic loaves to French, wholewheat and gluten free as well as cakes, sweet dough and jam. Set the timer overnight so you can wake up to freshly cooked bread and use the keep warm function to hold it at the optimum temperature. Buyers liked the adjustable crust control as well as the non-stick coating for easy cleaning. The best bread maker if you're after something compact, we think.

Find more Russell Hobbs products at Amazon

Best versatile bread maker: PANASONIC SD-2501WXC AUTOMATIC BREADMAKER WITH FRUIT & NUT DISPENSER

(Image credit: Panasonic)

8. PANASONIC SD-2501WXC AUTOMATIC BREADMAKER WITH FRUIT & NUT DISPENSER

Best versatile bread maker: plenty of different bakes in this model make it really versatile

Specifications
Colour: White
Capacity: 1.2kg
Dimensions: H38.2cm x W25.6cm x D38.9cm
Reasons to buy
+10 dough functions+Jam and compote mode+Gluten free option
Reasons to avoid
-Quite bulky-Bread pan isn't dishwasher safe

Buyers love the fact that this model is easy to use and simple to keep clean. As well as the different bread modes, including rye. There are three loaf sizes and a choice of crust colour. A 13-hour digital timer allows you to choose when to have your loaf ready and it even adjusts for the ambient temperature on the room it’s running in. The dispenser means you don’t have to stand by the bread maker to add fruit or nuts at the right time, while the choice of recipes and clear instructions are also a bonus. If you want a bread maker that can make lots of different bakes, this is the best bread maker for you.

Shop more Panasonic products at Amazon

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