Like its name implies, a bread maker is a home appliance that exists for the sole purpose of baking bread. They first rose to popularity in the 1990s as an easy way to make bread at home. But do bread makers save money, or are they simply a convenient way to make fresh, healthy bread?
For home cooks who love bread but don’t have the time or know-how to make it by hand, a bread maker is an incredible convenience. Newer models can bake entire loaves of bread in about an hour, and for people with dietary restrictions they can also make gluten-free and low-carb bread. However, whether or not a bread maker will save you money will depend on a few factors we’ll explore below.
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How do bread makers save money?
Baking bread at home is generally cheaper than buying bread. The ingredients for a simple loaf of bread (flour, salt, water, yeast, and perhaps some milk or butter) are quite cheap, and a bread maker doesn’t use a lot of power. However, the relevant issue is whether the savings from each loaf of bread will surpass the breadmaker’s cost before the breadmaker dies on you. Thankfully, most bread makers have a life span of about 1200 loaves.
How much bread does your family eat?
If your family eats a lot of bread, you can expect to save a lot of money on bread quickly. This is especially true because some breadmakers can be had for under $100. However, if your family eats very little bread, you should probably avoid buying a breadmaker. If this is the case it will mostly just take up space on your countertop.
What kind of bread do you like to make?
Bread comes in a wide range of sizes, shapes, and doughs, meaning that bread comes in a wide range of prices. If your family likes to eat the cheapest kinds of bread, your savings per loaf of bread are going to be minuscule. In contrast, if your family likes to eat more expensive kinds of bread such as gluten-free or low-carb, or with fancy add-ins like cheese, nuts and dried fruit, you can expect more and more value out of your breadmaker.
Can you buy ingredients in bulk?
Finally, if you can buy your ingredients in bulk, you can expect to save more money by than if you have to buy your ingredients in small quantities. Buying in bulk reduces the per unit price of the ingredients, meaning that your savings per loaf of bread will increase. Large jars of yeast can be purchased at most grocery stores, and you can purchase flour in bulk at restaurant supply stores or even on Amazon.
Ready to save money with a bread maker?
If your family eats a lot of bread, you can definitely save money by purchasing a bread maker. Serving a fresh, delicious loaf of bread maker bread at dinner really can’t be beat for ease and convenience. To figure out which one is the right model for you, check out our Best Bread Maker Reviews of 2020.