KitchenSavvy is Tweeting!
Storing Fresh Eggs

Cuisinart Convection Breadmaker - Not Ready for Prime Time

For Christmas this year, I asked for and was given a Cuisinart Convection Bread Maker, model CBK-200C.  If your idea of a bread maker is, "I'll set this up and have fresh bread when I get home from work," or "when I get up in the morning," then the CBK-200C is probably not the one for you.

I have only had it for three months, and have only used it on weekends, but I have encountered a number of problems.

More an aggravation than a problem, I don't see any indication whether the recipes  are for United States or Canada.  Canadian flour tends to be higher in protein than its southern counterpart so we need to use less of it to get the same rise.  Since the product label on the machine and the manual both say Cuisinart Canada, I would have expected the recipes to be suited to Canadian ingredients.  Maybe not!

The first time I used my new bread maker, I tried the recipe for a 2 pound loaf of  "Basic White Bread-Machine Bread."  It is a good thing I was there to watch over things.  Not just once but twice I had to reach in by hand and tear out chunks of wet dough during the baking cycle as the bread rose until it touched the underside of the window in the lid.  OK, I'm used to correcting recipes for bread makers, but in the end the largest loaf I can make uses a mere 2 2/3 cups of flour.  That is even less flour than is given in the 1 1/2 pound recipe in the book that came with it.

Another aggravation, and admittedly this is partially a matter of taste, is that I find the cooking time to get a perfect crust on the basic white bread recipe is half way between the light and medium crust settings.  At the light setting, I find the crust dull and flavorless, but at the medium setting it is over cooked and so dry that it tears the roof of my mouth.

I have noticed that if I leave the machine alone to do its stuff for the entire cycle, some of the damp flour collects in two corners of the pan and doesn't get mixed in during kneading.  If I'm lucky, it may stick to the dough during the first rising, but it may also just stay there creating unpleasant lumps in the corners of the bread.  To be sure of a proper loaf, with no caked flour corners, I need to stop the machine and reach in with a scraper to get the flour out of the corners.

The second time I used the machine, the pan jumped its guides and twisted around in the machine.  To hold the pan in place, there are two metal springs attached to the inside of the oven.  On the narrow sides of the pan there are corresponding metal tabs that are supposed to catch either side of each spring to hold the pan in place.  These tabs are quite small and don't appear to be adequate to hold the pan as it gets jostled about by the kneading of the dough.

Equally as poor is the design of the drive.  Both the plate in the base of the oven which engages the crossbar on the shaft holding the paddle and the crossbar itself are made from stamped metal.  This means that the sides are not perfectly perpendicular.  If the pan lifts up even a slight amount, as it seems to do during kneading, then the plate and crossbar slip.  The plate is then free to turn a half turn before slamming into the crossbar again, making a loud banging noise.  Again, it is a good thing I was around to hear the ruckus.  It wouldn't take long with it running like that for something to break.

Twice now I have had the paddle lift completely off of the drive shaft.  The first time, I didn't know, but found out when I went to take the paddle out before final rise.  The second time, today, I happened to be in the kitchen and heard the motor free wheeling during the initial knead.

Something like half of the times I have used this machine, something has gone wrong.  The pan has shifted, the drive mechanism has slipped due to the pan moving up, or the paddle has come off during kneading.  This is definitely not a machine I feel I can trust to do the job right when I'm not around to watch over it.

My rating for the Cuisinart Convection Bread Maker -- several slices short of a full loaf.


This bread maker has been a problem since we got it. The design used to hold the bread pan is awful, and there is an issue with the drive to paddle design as well. It will make a decent loaf of bread if you learn how to adjust the ingredients, but it is such a fight to get the pan to stay aligned, and then to get it out it is just not worth using. My wife hurt her back fighting to get the pan out of the thing! I am pretty mechanically inclined, and I spent 15 minutes working to get the pan out, including burned fingers and scraped knuckles. And yes, we have that 'slamming' noise as well. Cuisinart will not acknowledge any issues and will do nothing to assist or remedy the problems.Good luck if you buy this, seems to be hit and miss.

I do sympathize with all the issue regarding the Cuisinart Convection Bread Maker, model CBK-200C. I've had mine for 4 years and have only successfully used the White Bread Cycle with a light crust, for White Bread, Whole Wheat Bread, Brioche, Cinnamon Raisin, and Babka. Any other setting (e.g., medium crust, sweet bread) that I've tried always result in a very dark and/or burnt crust.Then there is the chronic issue of what constitutes a cup of bread flour - Cuisinart states it is 5 0z. by weight, other sources argue it is 4.75 oz. and King Arthur brand bread flour states it is 4.25 oz. Regardless, I always supervise the first kneading, clear the corners, and add flour as needed until the dough no longer sticks to a silicon spatula (I've never needed to add additional liquid).Bob Haggerty [email protected]

I have had my breadmaker 2 weeks. The first time I used it the pan jumped out of the clips and had to be pushed in a few times before it would stay down. However, after the second use I now can not get the the bread pan out. It is not the clips at the side but something underneath at the drive shaft! When I try to pull on the pan the inside base lifts so something has shifted/jammed. The paddle still turns and the machine functions. Now what?

It's me again. The brown bread worked although heavy. I have changed my mind about this bread maker and like it a lot. Some recommendations: Either check the measurement containers supplied or throw them out and use your own. Use bread flour. Take care when placing the pan into the bread maker so the clips line up exactly or bend ones on bread maker for a better fit. If there is dough left in the corners that was not mixed in then your recipe is too dry. I made two additional loaves of white bread and it was better than I ever expected. =================

The problem with bending the clips inside the bread maker outward for a better fit is that because they end up on an angle when you do that, they tend to lift the pan off of the drive mechanism on the bottom. See the original post for my concerns that this could lead to permanent damage to the machine.I am still not prepared to use this machine without being around to babysit it, which sort of defeats the reason for having a bread maker.Dave

I just got a Cuisinart Convection Bread maker at a discount store. I tried a loaf of the white french bread 2lb. last night expecting to have it ready for breakfast. I call it my bomb loaf. All the ingredients were around the outside of the pan and very dry looking with a big crater in the middle where the paddle is. I decided to try again and watch this time. After putting all the ingredients in I put the pan in and programed and turned it on. When the knead cycle started I watched and opened the lid to use a spatula to help the obviously dry mixture. I decided by the look of it I wasn't going to get anything much different even if I continued to help so I added another 1/2 measure of water at the right temp and assisted for a few minutes with my spatula. This appeared to fix the problem. I then let it go full cycle taking the paddle out after the last knead cycle. It worked although because I used all purpose flour it was a bit heavy with a thick crust even though it was to be a light crust. I expect this was because of the flour which should have been bread flour and that I still didn't have the proportions correct. Some thinking took place and I decided to check the measuring cups supplied. I am in Canada so decided to go by metric for the check. The dry measure was way out, more than half a cup for 4 cups of flour. I remarked this and then checked the liquid measure which I found was also way out by not enough. I corrected this. I have put the ingredients for whole wheat in and followed the measurements closely and the dough looks perfect. I have read a lot of bad reviews about this bread maker and would not have got it if I had read them first but I can't take it back and besides it was cheap so I am willing to put a little effort into overcoming the problems. I recommend you check the supplied measurement containers supplied or use a dependable alternative and through the supplied ones out.

Next I did check the clip arrangement for keeping the pan in place. You could bend out the clips on the side of the oven a little if your pan is not staying put and slipping out. Mine is fine but I did have to take care and for this loaf I paused during the knead so I could reposition the pan and make sure the clips, on the oven side, were snapped into the the bracket on the pan. It was fine after that. I just wasn't careful enough when I put the pan in. You shouldn't have to be.

I hope this helps a little someone like myself that is stuck with it because they bought it at a discount store where there is a no refund policy. I can take it back but they will only give me another one and not the money. I figure the next one may be worse so want to make this one work if I can and will only trade it in if I feel I can't deal with what ever happens. I only have 30 days so will use it as much as possible.

The solution to the tab problem is to bend the tabs up a bit until everything fits snugly... you may want to use flat pliers to do this, but it took me about 30 seconds to get them fitting perfectly. I haven't had a problem with the paddle lifting, but I make sure everything is very snug... I agree the design is "less than optimal".I have a problem with the loaves being too dense, I didn't realize that the recipes were not for Canadian flour, so this post is a big help!

My machine keeps making the banging noise (plate/crossbar slippage) no matter how I adjust the pan. How do you manage to fix the problem? All the websites suggest adding more water to reduce stiffness of dough, but in my case would throw the recipe off. Any tips? Thank you! BTW, is your machine functioning better or have you found a better one?

I can identify with the author above. I have had several instances when the pan lifted off the spring guides and once when the paddle came off. this is definitely not a machine that can be left alone.

In addition, the motor or drive are inadequate to do the job. You can hear the motor 'laboring' during the kneed cycles.

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)