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The Cuisinart CBK-110 bread machine has plenty of features and settings for the home bread baker all wrapped up in a compact design that doesn't take up a huge amount of counter space. The CBK-110 bread maker is our first bread machine, and thus far has been very easy to use and has produced some delicious home-baked bread.
There are quite a few bread makers on the market so choosing the best bread machine for our needs wasn't easy, especially since we hadn't used a bread maker before. Our basic purchasing criteria was: brand name (read: customer support), availability of replacement parts, good instruction manual, basic recipes, and priced under $100. Several established manufacturers were considered, but in the end we went with the Cuisinart CBK-110. It bridged the gap between the less expensive bread machines and the high-end bread machines, and had a wide selection of recipes.
The CBK-110 is a compact bread maker with a vertical bread pan so it doesn't take up much countertop space. The dimensions are: 11.5" tall. 9.25" wide,and 12" deep, and it weighs just under 11 pounds. The bread machine comes with a 42" cord which is longer than average, and it has a polarized plug so you don't need a grounded outlet. The image below shows the dimensions for the CBK-110 bread maker:
The CBK-110 has 12 pre-programmed menu options along with three crust shades (light, medium, dark), and three loaf sizes ( 1 pound, 1.5 pound, and 2 pound loaves). All the various recipes and settings are detailed in the Cuisinart recipe booklet and they're easily programmed with the push of a few buttons. The recipe booklet also includes four gluten-free recipes along with four jam recipes, all of which are programmed the same way as the bread recipes. You get an actual booklet with the Cuisinart - most manufacturers put the information on their website for you to download and print on your own. The Cuisinart bread maker manual has the instructions in the front half and recipes in the back half of the manual. Here's a link to the Cuisinart CBK-110 recipes, and here's a link to the CBK-110 instruction manual PDFs. The image below shows both sides of the instruction / recipe manual that's included with the bread machine.
The artisan bread recipes specified bread flour, the gluten-free recipes specified gluten-free flour or rice flour, but most of the basic bread recipes had all-purpose flour listed in the recipe, so you don't need bread flour in order to get started. For the yeast, almost all the yeast in the recipes could use either active dry, instant, or bread machine yeast. The only exception was if you plan to use the Ultra-Fast program - then you'll need to use rapid rise yeast.
The amount of time it takes to bake bread from start to finish depends on the type of bread you're making as well as the size of the loaf. The basic white program is the quickest. A one-pound white loaf takes 3:18, a 1.5-pound loaf takes 3;25, and a two-pound loaf takes 3:30. We haven't used the Ultra-Fast mode yet, but according to the instructions, a one-pound loaf takes 1:53, and a 1.5-pound loaf takes 2:03. Some of the artisan doughs can take up to five hours. This includes all necessary kneading, rising and baking. Not all the breads can be made using the Ultra-Fast mode so check the recipe before getting started if you need the bread by a specific time.
We don't have anything to compare the Cuisinart to as it's our first bread machine, but we like everything about the bread maker thus far. It's compact, relatively lightweight, fully automatic, and versatile (especially for someone new to bread machines). It has an easy to read display that practically taps you on the shoulder to tell you what you need to do next, there's a 13-hour delay, 15-minute power fail backup, and a 60-minute keep warm cycle. The non-stick bread pan and paddle are easy to clean, the three loaf sizes and three crust shades will please most families, it's BPA-free and comes with a three year limited warranty. For under $100, what more can you ask for?
The Cuisinart CBK-110 has a list price of $99 on the Cuisinart website, but the Internet price is usually lower. We bought our bread maker on Amazon for $84 including tax. You can probably also find it at Kohls, Macy's and/or Walmart. If the $99 price is too steep, some of the less expensive bread makers we looked at initially were the Oster Expressbake and the Sunbeam programmable bread maker.
For us there are no negatives other than wishing we had bought a bread machine sooner. Some folks might prefer a bread maker that produces a more traditional horizontal loaf as opposed to the vertical loaf of most compact machines, but you can always go to Amazon to look at the Zojirushi or Breville full-size bread makers which are both excellent higher-end bread machines, but they take up more countertop space and cost considerably more. We're a small family with limited counter space, so for us the smaller footprint was an important factor and we're happy with our purchase and have no regrets.
Here's an unboxing and basic review of the Cuisinart CBK-110 bread maker: