If you aren’t into baking than you probably are not use to using all the different types of mixing tools so I wanted to explain what the three standard mixers are used for.
Kneading Hook (Left)
Whenever you have dough that needs to be kneaded (stretched and folded to add air into it) then you will use the kneading hook. Always make sure to grease up the hook well with either non-stick spray, cooking oil or even butter.
Mixing Paddle (Middle)
When I use my mixer this is the attachment that I use 90% of the time (because I don’t really bake anything that requires dough besides pizza). A mixing paddle is used whenever you need to mix solids with liquids. An example of this would be custards (sugar with liquids), a batter for onion rings or fish & chips, or even a pure (candied yams). The easiest way to think about when to use a mixing paddle is to just think, if you would use a hand spatula than you would want to use a mixing paddle.
Mixing Whisk (Right)
Whenever you are dealing with mixing liquids and you need to beat air into the mixture you will want to use a whisk. A lot of times you will start a batter with a whisk then switch to a mixing paddle because whenever you build a batter you start with the liquids and add in your dry ingredients till it gets to the right thickness. So for example, when I make cheesecake I start with a whisk to mix my sugar and eggs together. This is ideal because the whisk will beat air into the mixture which is what I want to make it light and airy. Once I start to add more of the dry ingredients I have to switch to the mixing paddle because a whisk is not meant for thick batters that would get stuck between the metal spokes. Just think logically, if you would use a hand whisk then you would use a mixing whisk.