5 Ways to Put Your Bread Machine to Work

What can you do with your bread machine, besides making bread? You might be surprised by how versatile a bread machine can be.

At first glance, many of the kitchen electrics out there seem like one-trick ponies. One of our goals is to help you understand how to use appliances for multiple purposes, from the Roasted Garlic Express to the Philips Airfryer. Today’s post is dedicated to what you can do with your bread machine, besides making bread. You might be surprised by how versatile a bread machine can be.

1. Dough

When branching out with your bread machine, start with dough. Most (if not all) bread machines have a dough cycle that mixes, kneads, and lets your dough rise in a warm environment. Check out this roundup of recipes, including doughnuts, bagels, and soft pretzels. While a bread machine can’t fry your doughnuts or boil your bagels, it will automate the dough-making part of the process.

When branching out with your bread machine, start with dough for doughnuts, bagels, and soft pretzels.

Even if you never try the other four bread machine tricks below, using your bread machine to make dough can make this appliance worth your while.

2. Jam

Once you feel comfortable with making dough in your bread machine, give jam a whirl. On the Bed Bath & Beyond blog, Top Chef contestant Joy Crumpe outlines three simple steps for making apple butter. You can also try a variety of other fruits and vegetables (we love her idea for using sweet potatoes), either alone or in combination.

Your bread machine may come with a recipe booklet that includes jam recipes. Or if you’re feeling brave, experiment with chopped fruit and a little sugar. Add balsamic vinegar to strawberries, as Crumpe suggests, or nutmeg to peaches, or cardamom to pears. Spread on freshly baked bread, of course.

3. Tomato Sauce

Another low-risk bread machine experiment is tomato sauce. Instead of standing over a pot on the stove, let your bread machine gently heat your sauce while the paddles rotate and stir. Combine all of your preferred sauce ingredients in the pan, and let your bread machine do all the work.

Instead of standing over a pot on the stove, let your bread machine gently heat your tomato sauce while the paddles rotate and stir.

The jam cycle is ideal for tomato sauce, but if your bread machine doesn’t have a jam cycle, manually set it to run for as long as you’d like your sauce to cook.

4. Baked Pasta

Ready to get really daring? Try making baked pasta in your bread machine. Start with this recipe from the King Arthur Flour blog that looks like it produces delicious results. Or substitute your preferred sauce and pasta varieties, and set your bread machine to bake. Plus, a bread machine pan is a snap to clean, compared to a casserole dish. Baked-on sauce comes right off without scrubbing.

Baking pasta in your bread machine is actually a smart way to make a hot meal without heating up the whole kitchen. Keep your bread machine in mind this summer when just the thought of turning on the oven makes you sweat.

5. Cake

You knew we couldn’t leave out dessert, right? Bread machines bake, so there’s no reason you can’t bake a cake in one. In fact, many bread machines have a cake cycle.

You can bake any sheet or layer cake recipe in your bread machine.

You can bake any sheet or layer cake recipe in your bread machine. Joy Crumpe suggests checking for doneness frequently toward the end to ensure you pop it out at the right time. You can try this chocolate pudding cake recipe or this vanilla cheesecake recipe, both from the King Arthur Flour blog and tested in Zojirushi bread machines.

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