Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker review

The Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker is reasonably priced and sturdy, but its recipes are designed for a larger loaf tin. Our small appliances editor put it to the test in this Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker review.
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  • This Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker review is the product of three weeks of testing, including sandwich, wholemeal and seeded loaf recipes. I also used the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker to make some of the best pizza dough I’ve ever tried, but the loaves I made seemed almost too large for the bread maker to handle.

    Take a look at the best bread makers for more options

    Many bread makers come with a range of recipes and settings for different types of bread. I tested out five of these settings in this Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker review to find out if it’s worth your dough.

    Ideal Home’s rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Reasons to buy:

    • The machine is sturdy and reliable
    • Affordable
    • There are 12 settings to choose from
    • The front controls are easy to use and operate
    • Three colour settings
    • Two loaf size options

    Reasons to avoid:

    • This bread maker is louder than most
    • Loaves came out too large for the tin
    • The top of the bread sinks a little
    • Wholemeal bread wasn’t the best

    Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker review

    The Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker is a simple looking machine that makes a great loaf. The included recipes are almost too good, and I found that the large loaves I made overflowed from the bread tin and even pressed against the lid of the bread maker. The bread itself was delicious though, especially the white bread and pizza dough I made. It’s also a very reasonably priced bread maker that didn’t have any issues during testing.

    Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker: Specs

    • Size: 38.5 x 33.5 x 30.3 cm
    • Loaf sizes: 650g or 800g
    • Programs: 12
    • Gluten-free mode? Yes
    • Browning levels: 3
    • Cleaning: None of the parts are dishwasher-safe, but the tin wipes clean

    What’s in the box?

    Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    The Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker comes with a two-pound loaf tin and with a keep warm setting and programmable timer, which works for up to 13 hours in advance. There’s also a measuring cup and teaspoon and tablespoon measurement, which makes it easy to follow recipes.

    The bread maker itself is made of white plastic. The front display makes it easy to choose one of the 12 settings, and there’s also a button to choose the loaf size and desired darkness level.

    My first impressions of the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    I did not love the look of the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker upon first glance. It’s not the prettiest machine, and the plastic exterior feels a little cheap. That said, the inside is sturdy and powerful enough to knead a (very) large loaf. The bread maker comes with a paddle that slots firmly onto the inside of the tin. It does leave a large dent in the bread, as do most bread makers, because it doesn’t flatten down before baking.

    The instruction leaflet that comes with the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker is packed with interesting recipes such as banana and walnut loaves and fruit bread, as well as gluten free and wholemeal recipes. As with all of my bread maker reviews I tried a few of the included recipes, as well as a few standard recipes to see how different machines handle the same recipes.

    Cooking white bread in the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    At first I was concerned that the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker would struggle to incorporate all of the ingredients I added to make a white loaf. The cardinal rule of breadmaking is to trust the process, though, so I let the machine do the work and was pleased to find that the areas of dough left un-incorporated (see below) did end up fully baked into the loaf.

    Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    I made both a large and a medium loaf in the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker to see how it held up. One thing I noticed with the included recipes is that they included a lot more yeast as standard than the Morphy Richards Homebake breadmaker. This meant that while the end loaf was a similar size to those I had made in other machines, it rose so much that the top of the machine sometimes struggled to contain it. This still resulted in delicious bread, but with a comical little window-shaped groove in the top.

    Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    White bread is really where the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker came into its own, and the loaves I made it in didn’t last long whatsoever. My personal preferences when it comes to bread vary from those of my family, who like a crusty farmhouse loaf. The crust on the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker was very crisp indeed, and well baked and coloured according to the settings I had chosen (medium). The loaves really did resemble something I could buy at a local supermarket’s fresh baked section, but had all the satisfaction of being home-baked. The slices were springy and evenly risen, which was perfect for making sandwiches or even a slice of toast.

    I found that cooking a medium-sized loaf according to the included recipes yielded a very well-risen bake, but without the space concerns I had with the large loaf. Above you’ll see a picture of the medium loaf I cooked in the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker, which was plenty large enough for even the most generous of sandwiches.

    Cooking wholemeal loaves in the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    If I could eat only one type of bread for the rest of my life, it would be a wholemeal loaf. Unfortunately, it’s also one of those loaves I struggle to bake from scratch. In the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker I had more luck, but the recipe included with the bread maker came out a little dense when compared to its sandwich loaf counterpart. This may be because I followed the medium loaf instructions, and it has less yeast than the average white loaf.

    Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    This was more my kind of loaf than my family’s favourites, and it doesn’t resemble anything you can find at the supermarket. It reminded me of my Irish family’s soda bread, which I always look forward to having for breakfast when I pay them a visit. Try it smothered in butter and topped with banana; it’s delicious. Of course, this wasn’t what I expected when I tried to make a wholemeal loaf, but the slightly dense finish and less crisp crust (I baked it at a low brownness setting) went to show just how versatile the bread maker can be.

    Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    Other thoughts

    The loaves I made in the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker had a tendency to sink in the middle, regardless of whose recipe I used. I suspect this is an issue with the proving process, as the bread rises almost too enthusiastically, and this can’t be sustained in the baking process. Some fine-tuning of the recipes may have fixed the issues I was having but it’s a shame that the recipes tailor-made for the machine had this result. Aesthetically the loaves weren’t the best I’ve tried, but the taste test is far more important, and I had no complaints with the actual bread I was able to make in the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker.

    Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    I also used the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker to make pizza dough (which came in very helpful when testing some of the best pizza ovens) and I was particuarly impressed with how stretchy and elastic this dough came out. The recpie recommended I use 00 flour (typically used for making pasta) to make a finer pizza dough, and it’s something I’ve used the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker for since testing. It pairs with my pizza oven like a dream.

    In terms of the quirks of using this bread maker, it’s certainly louder than some of the other ones I’ve tried. The noise is almost mechanical and audible from the next room, although not so loud that you’d have to turn the volume up on the TV.

    The bread maker beeps loudly between stages and when done, which is great for those who are eagerly awaiting a slice straight from the oven (if the smell alone wasn’t enough to lure you down to the kitchen in wait) but slightly annoying if you’re on the phone, as you don’t need to be alerted when it’s simply doing a second prove.

    I enjoyed how sturdy the paddle was with this bread maker, but be prepared to fish it out and leave a considerable dent in the underside of your loaf when finished.Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    Cleaning the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker

    Bread removes cleanly from the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker, and then it’s just a case of wiping the tin down with some soapy water. The attachments can’t be placed in the dishwasher, but it’s easy enough to clean by hand that dishwashing wouldn’t be worth the bother.

    Should you buy the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker?

    If you want a great bread maker for around the £100 mark, go for it. The Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker held up well in testing and was perfectly capable of doing the hard work unsupervised. Heed my warning that the included 800g recipes will rise too much for the machine to handle. They still bake perfectly well, but leave that funny dent at the top. You’re better off using your own recipes or adapting those included (perhaps toning down the 7g of yeast used in some loaves) to avoid the sinking at the top of some recipes. Especially when it comes to white bread.

    About this review, and the reviewer

    Millie Fender heads up all things small appliances at Future. There’s nothing she loves more than testing out the latest and greatest cooking gadgets, for indoor and outdoor use, from toasters to air fryers. She reviewed the Judge Electricals Digital Bread Maker from her own kitchen, testing it rigorously for a couple of weeks before writing this review.

    Millie lives in South London and is constantly squeezing more appliances into her modest kitchen. If it makes it onto the kitchen counters full time, you know an appliance is worth the hype.

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