Buying Guide: Spiral and Planetary Mixers


One of the essential pieces of equipment for many locations is the dough mixer. One Fat Frog Restaurant Equipment moves a lot of commercial dough mixers in and out of the warehouse. We move a variety of mixer capacities from trusted brands like Hobart and others. The style of mixer you purchase depends on the amount of dough you’ll be mixing, as well as if you’re whipping, blending, or stirring a variety of other food products.

There are essentially two styles of commercial mixers: spiral and planetary. Dig:

Spiral mixers get their names from their spiral-shaped dough agitator. Unlike your standard dough mixer, the bowl revolves during the mixing process while the agitator remains stationary. Spiral mixers are commonly used in commissaries and bakeries, but they can also be found in large volume pizzerias.

When it comes to mixing heavy, thicker dough, the spiral dough agitator is more effective than traditional hooks and beaters. The spirals provide lower resistance, which helps control the temperature of the dough. This helps ensure proper rising and simpler kneading. Spirals also allow for smaller batches to be mixed.

The downside of spiral mixers? They’re ineffective for mixing or whipping stuff like creams or chocolate. Because of this, they’re considered specialized pieces of equipment and will not mix anything but dough.

For maximum flour and dough capacities, spiral mixers are commonly sized according to bags of dough. For example, some bakeries will call their mixers by the amount of 100lb bags of dough they can handle – like a “one-bagger” or a “three-bagger.”

Planetary mixers (also known as vertical mixers) are named from the orbital motion of their dough agitator. Get it, like an orbit. During the mixing process, the agitator moves in circular orbits along the inside wall surfaces of the bowl while the bowl remains stationary. Planetary mixers are good for locations that demand a dynamic mixer. These kinds of mixers are also great for locations that have to prepare dough in smaller batches.

With a planetary mixer, users can utilize an assortment of attachments, including dough hooks wire whisks, and beater blades. This makes them wicked versatile as they blend, whip, mix, and stir a variety of products.

The downside of a planetary mixer is that they have smaller capacities and aren’t able to handle as much dough as a spiral mixer. They also run at slower speeds than spiral mixers – about 1/4 to 1/2 slower.

One Fat Frog Restaurant Equipment

One Fat Frog • 2416 Sand Lake Road • Orlando, FL 32809 • 407-480-3409