This week, I’d like to give you the scoop on Kitchenaid’s Flex Edge Beater attachment for the 4.5 quart stand mixer. I had known about this mixer attachment since my husband bought one for his mother for Christmas, but since I didn’t have a stand mixer at the time, I missed out on all the fun. Since then, I have joined the ranks of proud Kitchenaid stand mixer owners (thanks again to said thoughtful husband), so when I saw this beater on clearance for $14.98 (list price $29.99) at Target, it seemed like a no-brainer to give it a whirl.
The flex edge beater is just about the same as the standard paddle attachment that comes with your stand mixer, but with the addition of a strip of hard plastic/rubber along one edge which scrapes the side of the bowl as it mixes. While it has a v-shaped indentation on the bottom, that doesn’t actually correspond to the dimple in the bottom of the mixer’s bowl (the standard beater is the same height, but doesn’t have the indentation). I am not sure what the purpose of this shape change is.
So far, I’ve used this attachment for cake batter, cookie dough, frosting, and muffin batter. As might be expected, it worked best on thinner substances like cake batter and frosting, but became less effective the thicker the product got. I was afraid to continue using it for a dense cookie dough because my mixer’s motor started to sound alarmingly strained. I’d suggest stirring with a wooden spoon if your mixture becomes any thicker than dense cake batter/heavy frosting just to be on the safe side. [After all, it’d be a shame to lose your investment in a stand mixer just because you wanted to try out a $30 gadget.]
As you can see in the photos, the beater did a good job of scraping the sides of the bowl, though it does have a tendency to push your batter/dough up the side of the bowl and over the beater a little bit. You still need to scrape the bottom of the bowl because the beater does not reach around the dimple, which means that it leaves a pocket of unmixed ingredients that you can’t see. I am not sure if this would be a problem for the corresponding beater in a larger mixer, since those don’t have a dimple on the bottom, but either way, it is a small annoyance which is easily rectified with a rubber spatula.
One unforeseen outcome of all this mixing is that the flexible edge of the beater has started to lose its shape. Of course, this makes sense given its tight fit with the edge of the bowl. It does not appear that there is any chance that I will be able to return it to its original shape, and since you can’t reverse the direction of your mixer’s rotation (as far as I know), the problem will only increase with time.
With all of that said, this is a nice attachment to have if the price is right. If it were full list price at $30, I’d probably pass on it and just use the beater that came with the mixer. At $15, it was worth it to me to get a cleaner scrape at the side of the bowl for the duration of mixing. With some limitations (i.e., thickness of batter and bottom of bowl scraping ability), it does exactly what it sets out to do. We’ll see how it holds up in the following months of use.
If anyone has experience with the off-brand versions of this attachment, I’d love to hear about it. Feel free to share in the comments or send me an e-mail!
Please note that I paid for this product with my own money and did not receive any compensation from Kitchenaid for this review, nor am I affiliated with them in any way. I simply wanted to try this attachment to satisfy my own curiosity and to share my results with other curious bakers.