Frosting is one of the easiest things to make in baking, but it also requires you to use the right attachment for it if you’re going to make it properly and get the results you want. The 3 most common accessories are the dough hook, the flat beater, and the whisk, and all of these are incredibly useful for a wide range of mixing tasks. Of course, you won’t be using the dough hook as it’s totally not needed for making frosting.
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Making frosting is one of those tasks your mixer comes in handy for, so picking the right attachment is crucial. Since there are many different types, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, so I’m going to answer it by showing you the different types and their recommended attachments.
Types of Frostings and Attachments to Use
Here are the types you’ll most likely make during your baking sessions divided into two groups and the types of accessory to mix them with in order to get the results you want. After this section, I’ll explain why these are the right ones to use:
Group 1: simple buttercream, ermine buttercream, royal icing, pastry cream buttercream, decorator’s buttercream, fudge and cream cheese frosting.
Accessory to use: Flat or flex beater
Group 2: French buttercream, swiss meringue buttercream, whipped cream, Italian meringue, 7-minute, and ganache frosting.
Accessory to use: Whip or whisk
Why These Attachments?
Whisk: Air is very important when making light or fluffy mixtures. The whisk is an attachment that adds air to your mixture to produce that light or fluffy texture you seek when your machine is set to a high speed. The whisk is also useful for beating heavy cream to the thickness you want.
Flat and Flex Beater: The flat beater has the opposite effect on your mixtures compared to the whisk. While the whisk pushes a lot of air into your mixture, the flat beater pushes only a little amount of air. So, the flat beater is used for frostings that don’t require a lot of air in them.
The flex beater does the same task as the flat beater, but it has one extra function — scraping the sides of the mixing bowl to save you having to scrape it yourself after mixing. If you can, make this one of the extra attachments you buy as you usually won’t find a flex beater in your mixer’s package. They’re sold separately in most cases.