C-Shaped Dough Hook Frustrations

No matter what I do, this type of dough hook doesn’t work for me. Is it the hook itself, or is it my stand mixer model?

I get frustrated with the C hook and simply resort to using the flat beater, then finish the kneading by hand or do a long ferment/proof. But I think that having a stand mixer is good for brioche type doughs, rarely as I make them. And I paid for this. I’d like to be able to exploit its full functionality.

I can add the dry to the wet ingredients, or the wet to the dry, it doesn’t work.

My model is the HB 63391, pictured here. I decided to economize on the brand because I don’t use it a lot and it got good reviews for what I do use it for: whipping egg whites and making sponges. And it does a fine job of that.

I only mention this because maybe it is the stand mixer itself. Maybe if I’d sprung for a Cuisinart or a KA I’d have gotten better results, but I’ve done a thorough net-search & it seems that I’m not the only person who is unhappy with C hooks. Kenwood, Breville, KA and Cuisinart owners have expressed frustration with their C hooks…

Is it the shape of the hook, or the entire concept of C-hooks or the C hook on my model or the mixer itself? This is a picture of the HA C-hook. It’s a bit different from the Cuisinart and the KA hooks. The pic of the HA C hook isn’t great but I think you can see that the looping part of the hook comes up much higher than the other models.

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What does it do that you don’t like?

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used a KA hook for many years - after seeing lots of good words about the new spiral design, I got one.

the spiral design outperforms the “std” KA hook by a wide margin.
if it fits your bowl/machine, I highly recommend it.


I haven’t even tried using it for a while because I’ve been doing S&F and long ferments but from memory, it does a bad job of incorporating ingredients. Then when it does form some kind of a mass, it doesn’t actually knead the thing, leaving much of the flour on the sides/bottom of the bowl.

I’m trying to find out whether it would fit my mixer. I wrote to HA but they haven’t responded yet. You can’t call them. It’s all online.

Does that hook fit a planetary mixer? I’ve read that planetary mixers can only be used with C hooks.

Update: someone suggested that I do this as preparation:

Hand mix as usual. Autolyse. Then use the dough hook.

Can’t hurt, might help, will try on my next attempt.


HB makes a mixer with a spiral hook (stock photo from Amazon below and ← is link to mixer). I didn’t spend much time looking, but I’d think hopefully one could buy replacement hooks and (crosses fingers) hope the HB attachment fixtures are generic across HB models.

One other question based on:

Is it possible that your hook doesn’t reach deeply enough into the bowl? I see your model appears to be fixed height (rather than head or bowl that can go up/down like a KA) but even a couple of millimeters off affects bread dough mixing, whereas with wet ingredients it wouldn’t be a problem.

My KA is the one where the bowl goes up/down and it doesn’t go up quite high enough (even with the adjustment screw at max height) so while it does batters and whips/meringues just fine, for bread dough I have to use a silicone spatula jamming around at the bottom in a circle for a couple of minutes to get all the flour incorporated. After a mass forms, it works fine. But if I don’t mess with it, it will never come together.

When I burn out the motor on this one, the next one is going to be inspected for bowl height and sent right back if not perfect…

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Ah, sounds like it’s a little too small for the bowl (as @CCE suggests).

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I have a KA Artisan tilt head and the “C” dough hook works pretty well… but I regularly check the beater/bowl clearance with the dime test.

I pretty much always add the wet to the dry ingredients (once they have been combined). And for my pasta I mix everything with the paddle for 30 seconds on speed 2, and then knead with dough hook for 2 mins also on speed 2.

They don’t sell the spiral hook separately, as far as I can tell - plus I believe that spirals don’t work on the planetary mixer, which this is.

Yes, it’s fixed height and it’s been a while since I’ve used it, but I think that this is the issue. The dry ingredients stay there, at the bottom of the bowl. So annoying.

I’m sorry to hear of your KA problems. (Perhaps you should try that mix it up by hand & autolyze thing I mentioned above.) Cheez, you’d think that product engineers might be aware of these issues…

PS You gave me the idea to actually measure the C hook clearance. I stuck a piece of uncured (i.e. pliable) polymer clay to the bottom of the bowl. I lowered the C hook onto it - there was a very faint indentation. The clay is just about 1 cm thick.

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A dime is 1/16 inch which = 0.15875 cms, OK, let’s call it 0.16 cms.

My clay measuring test shows the clearance in my HA as a full centimeter. That’s a huge difference.

I stuck the clay in various parts of the bottom of the bowl & the hook doesn’t touch it, including at the very center of the bottom which has a slight mound-like shape.

I followed up with the flat beater as shown in the video. I made a clay piece of about 3mms & it didn’t push it around. A dime is 1.6 mms.

Big difference. I’m annoyed! Who would think to worry about this when buying something??


Note that the KA dime test is done with the paddle… and the paddle is quite a bit taller than the dough hook (the dough hook will never hit the dime).

my KitchenAid bowl lift is planetary - I think all KA’s are , ,
different KAs have different volume and profile bowls and you’ll see the spirals specified for certain models.
you may have more luck asking the spiral vendor if they have something to fit your HA model …

:point_up: :point_up:

I didn’t realize there was a spiral hook available. I just ordered one and hope to put it through its paces as soon as it arrives. Thanks for posting!

Sad to hear… I suppose it is too late to return it?

I thought all bowl lift KA’s came with the spiral hook?

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I think we’ve established that this is the problem. The KA has 2mms on the Hamilton Beach. I think everything else is irrelevant.

new ones, perhaps.
older sales came with the std crooked C style.

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