reviews
Reviewing KitchenAid Attachments
KitchenAid offers a plethora of attachments for your stand mixer, including ones for making pasta, spiralizing vegetables, grinding meat, and churning ice cream. Which are worth buying?
Riddley Gemperlein-Schirm

What Are KitchenAid Attachments?

KitchenAid, the company that makes our favorite high-end, inexpensive, and small stand mixers, also makes a variety of attachments that fit in the “hub” at the front of each machine (behind the silver cap labeled “KitchenAid”). Among the offerings are attachments for rolling and cutting pasta, spiralizing vegetables, grinding meat, and churning ice cream. There’s also a food processor attachment, which allows users to slice, shred, and julienne food. For owners of KitchenAid stand mixers, these attachments can save counter and cabinet space. Plus, since they’re powered by a stand mixer, some of the attachments can be faster and easier to use than hand-powered stand-alone countertop appliances.

Will KitchenAid Attachments Work with My Stand Mixer?

Good news! Except for the ice cream maker attachment, which is compatible with only the company’s 4.5-quart or larger models, all the attachments listed here are compatible with every KitchenAid stand mixer.

How We Evaluated the Attachments

Over the years, we have included a selection of KitchenAid attachments in the lineups of our meat grinder, ice cream maker, and spiralizer reviews. We’ve included the results of those attachment testings here. For attachments we hadn’t yet reviewed, we put them through a gauntlet of tests to see how well they performed their basic functions. For certain attachments, we also compared how well they stacked up against our favorite stand-alone countertop machines.

KitchenAid 3-Piece Pasta Roller & Cutter Set

The KitchenAid 3-Piece Pasta Roller & Cutter Set, one of the company’s best sellers, consists of three attachments: a roller to make sheets of pasta dough and two separate cutters, one to make fettuccine and one to make angel hair (the company calls the latter a “spaghetti” cutter, but the strands it produces are as thin as angel hair). To test the efficiency of each attachment, we timed how long it took to roll out sheets of our Master Recipe for Pasta Dough and then cut the sheets into fettuccine and angel hair. To see if the roller attachment could handle a more delicate dough, we also made Gluten-Free Fresh Pasta. We repeated the tests using our favorite manual pasta maker, the Marcato Atlas 150 Wellness Pasta Machine, and compared the results with the pastas we made with the attachments.

  • RECOMMENDED 

    KitchenAid 3-Piece Pasta Roller & Cutter Set 

    The roller attachment had fewer thickness settings than the Marcato (eight versus ten), but the cutters made fettuccine and angel hair up to 4 minutes faster than the Marcato model. Both the sheets and the strands that the attachments produced were on par with the pasta made with the Marcato. It was simple to attach the roller and cutters to the machine and easy to change the thickness settings of the roller. Because the roller and the cutters are suspended from the mixer above the countertop, it was easy to feed dough into them with one hand and catch the sheets or cut pasta strands with the other—a task that takes some practice when using the hand-cranked Marcato model. These KitchenAid attachments are also good options for those with countertops that are too thick to properly anchor the Marcato with its adjustable clamp. The downside? The automated speed of the attachments required more attentiveness. We had to be sure to feed the sheets of dough straight through the roller, as they had a tendency to process sideways, producing sheets with unwanted folds or jagged edges. If we saw a fold in the pasta sheet while using the Marcato, we had time to fix it, so those new to or less confident with pasta making might be better off with the manual model. The speed of the roller attachment also caused some tears in the delicate gluten-free pasta dough sheets, which benefited from the more gentle touch of the hand-cranked machine. However, we still got great gluten-free strands of fettuccine from both machines. Overall, the KitchenAid 3-Piece Pasta Roller & Cutter Set is a good option for those who have a KitchenAid stand mixer and would like a slightly faster, more automated way of making fresh pasta (albeit at more than double the price of our favorite manual pasta maker).
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    Buy on Amazon]

    Model: KSMPRA Price: $138.02 Accessories: Cleaning brush Thickness Settings: 8

KitchenAid Gourmet Pasta Press

While a hand-cranked pasta machine is great for making strands of fettuccine and linguine, it cannot produce tubular or spiral pasta shapes. For that task, you need an extruder. The KitchenAid Gourmet Pasta Press presses pasta dough through one of six interchangeable plates to produce spaghetti, bucatini, rigatoni, fusilli, and large and small macaroni. To test this attachment, we used the pasta dough from the KitchenAid manual to make each shape, used our Master Recipe for Pasta Dough to make rigatoni and fusilli, and used our delicate Gluten-Free Fresh Pasta recipe to make spaghetti. We cleaned the pasta plates with the included cleaning tool after every use and ran the dishwasher-safe parts through the dishwasher repeatedly throughout testing. We evaluated the quality of the pastas and how easy the press was to use and clean.

  • NOT RECOMMENDED

    KitchenAid Gourmet Pasta Press

    First of all, if you buy this attachment, you should ignore the included recipe and instructions. The KitchenAid dough we made was too soft (its flour-to-egg ratio is off) and produced fusilli, macaroni, and bucatini with no definition or curve. And the manual’s instruction to operate the press on speed 10? That overheated the gears, causing our $450 stand mixer to irreparably break. Frustratingly, KitchenAid would not replace the broken stand mixer, even though the unit was damaged due to its own attachment’s instructions. 

     

    Many phone calls and a new stand mixer (that we had to buy ourselves) later, we saw better results when we operated the attachment at speed 6 (or lower) and used our own pasta recipes. For the most part, the attachment churned out well-formed pasta shapes (we tried all the plates), but it was most successful at making rigatoni and spaghetti. However, the wire pasta cutter at the end of the attachment often pinched the pasta openings together (we couldn’t fix the bucatini, but we were able to pry open the rigatoni ends with our fingers). The machine also took a long time to extrude pasta (about 22 to 27 minutes for a 1-pound batch). Cleaning the pasta plates, which aren’t dishwasher-safe, was a tedious task—we had to use the toothpick-like cleaning tool to poke bits of dried dough out of all the nooks and crannies of the plates. If you’re set on using your stand mixer to extrude your own tubular or spiral pastas, this attachment is an OK option for some shapes, but beware its potential operating and cleanup challenges.

    Model: KSMPEXTA Price: $139.99 Accessories: 6 pasta shape disks, cleaning tool, dough pusher Dishwasher-Safe: Pasta ring, auger, and dough pusher on top rack only; disks, cutter, and housing should be cleaned with a soft, damp cloth and dried thoroughly with a soft, dry cloth

KitchenAid Food Grinder Attachment

We tested the KitchenAid Food Grinder Attachment as part of a testing of stand-alone meat grinders (you can read the full review here). We cut sirloin steak tips and fatty pork butt into 1-inch chunks—the size we call for when making hamburger and chorizo—and processed the chunks using the medium and large grinder plates. We also evaluated how easy the attachment was to assemble and clean.

  • HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

    KitchenAid Food Grinder Attachment

    This attachment processed meat faster than a food processor. It yielded almost as much meat as was fed into it, meaning no fat or sinew got stuck around the grinder plate and ground into unusable pâté. It had some dishwasher-safe parts, making it easier to clean. The only downsides: It has just two grinding plates, coarse and medium (no fine), and a plastic hopper and auger (we’d prefer all-metal ones). Note: KitchenAid recently released an updated version of this grinder attachment. We will order and test this model soon and update this review with our findings.
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    Buy on Amazon]

    Model: 108716 Price: $48.74

KitchenAid Ice Cream Maker Attachment

To see how well the KitchenAid Ice Cream Maker Attachment worked, we compared it with stand-alone electric ice cream makers (read the full testing here). In each machine, we made vanilla and coffee-crunch ice creams, raspberry sorbet, and frozen yogurt, awarding points to those machines that produced high-quality frozen desserts. We also evaluated the attachment’s paddle design, which determined how efficiently it churned and how easy it was to take the temperature of the ice cream. Of course, we also evaluated the attachment’s performance by tasting all the ice cream, sorbet, and frozen yogurt made with it.

  • NOT RECOMMENDED

    KitchenAid Ice Cream Maker Attachment

    For home cooks who already own a KitchenAid 4.5-quart or larger stand mixer, this attachment is a tempting option. We liked the “lush” sorbet it made, but we detected a few ice crystals. We also liked its speedy churning. However, the two-part paddle design was fussy and difficult to attach to the mixer, and it was hard to fill the bowl without spilling. Its high horizontal blades got in the way of our thermometer and let clumps of sorbet or ice cream spin around on top unmixed, forcing us to stop the machine often to scrape down the bowl or take the dessert’s temperature. If you want a great ice cream maker that makes excellent frozen desserts and is easy to use, our favorite is the Cuisinart Frozen Yogurt, Ice Cream & Sorbet Maker.

    Model: KICA0WH Price: $63.65 Capacity: 2 qt Average Time It Took to Make Ice Cream: 18 min

KitchenAid Spiralizer with Peel, Core & Slice

Spiral vegetable cutters, or spiralizers, cut fruits and vegetables into long noodles and ribbons for “pastas,” salads, and side dishes. To see how well the KitchenAid Spiralizer with Peel, Core & Slice attachment worked, we tested it along with six manual spiralizers (read the full testing here). We knew we wanted a spiralizer that could accommodate fruits and vegetables of different sizes, shapes, and densities, as well as models that would be stable and easy to set up, use, and clean. A good spiralizer should also create long, unbroken noodles and ribbons and generate little waste. To find out how well each worked, we spiralized zucchini, apples, beets, potatoes, and butternut squash, weighing each item before and after spiralizing to calculate waste.

  • RECOMMENDED WITH RESERVATIONS 

    KitchenAid Spiralizer with Peel, Core & Slice

    This lefty-friendly attachment effortlessly transformed zucchini, beets, apples, and potatoes into long noodles and ribbons. Out of all the spiralizers we tested, it was the easiest to clean, and its wide assortment of blades was handy. But it was fussy to use and generated a lot of waste. With butternut squash, the machine’s powerful motor was of little use since the tiny vegetable holder couldn’t stabilize the squash enough to produce even a single noodle.
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    Buy on Amazon]

    Model: KSM1APC Price: $99.95 Number of Blades: 5 (ribbon slicer with large core, ribbon slicer with small core, ¼-inch noodle, ⅛-inch noodle, peeling blade)