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Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Maker Review

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine / Bread Maker Review

By the Mana Mixers Blog


I’ve been involved in the kitchen equipment business for over fifteen years and have been using Zojirushi products for just about as long. My uncle lived in Japan for a few years and told me that while he was there he discovered that Zojirushi was the number one kitchen product – the “best” in fact.

I’ve used Zojirushi products such as the Zojirushi NHS-18 ten cup rice cooker/steamer, the Zojirushi Gourmet Sizzler (electric multipurpose skillet), and the Zojirushi bread machine. A few years back, I inherited my Grandma’s BBCC-S15 Zojirushi bread machine. Although it produced a non-traditional upright loaf, it was a real rugged and heavy-duty work horse, which I loved. My family eats 100% whole wheat bread on a daily basis and that machine could handle the whole wheat. After learning about the traditional horizontal shaped loaf that the new Zojirushi BB-CEC20 produces, and how it handles 100% whole wheat with ease, I decided it was time to purchase the new machine. I also wanted to try some new features that Grandma’s machine didn’t have.

One of my biggest concerns was whether the new machine had the mixing power of my old BBCC-S15. One of the things I liked about it was that I could throw in the ingredients and mix enough dough for 2 loaves of 100% whole wheat bread. Even though I couldn’t cook it all right then in the machine, I could use the dough for other baking needs (i.e. pizza dough, dough for hand formed bread, rolls, etc.). Some of the other machines I’ve researched say specifically to NOT use 100% whole wheat, let alone knead two batches of dough, because their machines just can’t handle it. So I bit the bullet and here is my review!

As I started researching this new machine, all of the reviews I read stated that this new machine is not much different than its predecessor, the BBCC-X20. Although I do not own a BBCC-X20, the one thing I did like about it was that the BBCC-X20’s price is cheaper than the new machine. However, Zojirushi has discontinued that model. Even though I found a couple of dealers that still sold that model, I didn’t want to buy an outdated model.


Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine in box Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Maker in box

After getting my machine, the first thing I did was do a quick inspection of the packaging. It was packaged in a sturdy box and upon opening it I found the actual machine inside a plastic bag, protecting it from scratches, and secured by Styrofoam packaging pieces. It was secure and didn’t shake around in the box. I was content.

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine packaging

Not only was the machine packaged and secure on the outside of the machine, but upon opening the bread machine, I found more support packaging inside, holding the bread pan securely inside the machine.

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Maker packaging


The instructional DVD that came with my Zojirushi BB-CEC20 was very helpful. It gave me a quick overview of the machine and control panel and then proceeded to walk through the steps of making bread (including what order to add the ingredients for a better batch of bread), sourdough starter, cake, jam and meatloaf. It was very thorough and even helped me learn how to take care of the machine after use.


Inside the box I also found an operating and instructions manual (with recipes), a bread maker instruction DVD with the 1-800 toll-free number right on the front, and a measuring cup and spoon. Because I inherited my Grandma’s old Zojirushi, I am not sure if her machine came with additional pieces, but I am confident that her instruction manual was not as detailed as this new one. Or better yet, I’m confident it did not come with a detailed instructional DVD with a toll-free number to call. I decided to test the toll-free number out. I called and asked what the non-stick surface on the pan and the kneading blades is made out of. A friendly customer service representative gave me an informative answer, stating that it is made of PFTE, a type of flouropolymer. I asked her if it would ever wear-out with use and she stated that it could start peeling with extended use, but that it doesn’t have any toxicological effects. She said that if I had any other questions or concerns, I could call back and they would be happy to assist me in anyway. As I get going with some of these recipes and bread cycles, I will not hesitate to call for any reason!

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine / Bread Maker Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine / Bread Maker


I thought that the machine was a good looking machine. I chose to purchase the white machine, but there is also a black and stainless steel style that I had the option of purchasing. I liked the look of the lid and found that it opened a little bit easier than Grandma’s lid. However, one function that the old machine had that my new one doesn’t is the ability for the lid to completely detach.

Zojirushi BBCC-S15 Bread Machine / Bread Maker

The only reason I enjoyed this feature is because it allowed me more ease in removing my food (be it a large loaf of bread, cake, or jelly) from the machine. Again, it’s not a huge deal, but something that would be nice to have on my new machine.

Another thing I noticed was the difference in viewing windows. Although the viewing window on the new machine allows you to see the length of the loaf of bread you are cooking, you have to move your head around to see the width of the loaf. This doesn’t seem to pose a huge problem, but Grandma’s viewing window seemed to capture more of the loaf, while just looking straight on, as it baked in the machine.

Zojirushi BBCC-S15 and Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Makers / Bread Machines

The new machine is not as tall as my old one, which is a benefit for me because it actually fits under the lower cabinets in my kitchen. The weight of the newer machine is just about 4 pounds lighter than the older model (15.6 pounds versus 19.8 pounds). But, even with the lighter feel of the new machine, it still feels like a sturdy product that isn’t going to fall apart. My grandma’s machine was dropped at one point, but handled the fall like a champ (see picture below). Although I don’t plan on dropping my new machine to test its durability, from the look and feel of it, it seems like it would handle a fall like Grandma’s old machine.

The aftermath from the fall of Grandma’s machine:

Zojirushi BBCC-S15 Bread Machine / Bread Maker Zojirushi BBCC-S15 Bread Machine / Bread Maker

I enjoyed the look of the control panel on the new machine compared to the old machine. The slanted view and raised buttons make it easier to access the different features, and add to the overall sleek look of the machine. Additionally, the buttons/selections on the control panel that the new machine has that Grandma’s machine doesn’t are the sourdough setting and the crust control (for light, medium, or dark). According to Zojirushi, the biggest change on this machine over all the other machines is that some of the cycles have been fine-tuned to give more precise baking. I will keep you informed on what I discover.

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine / Bread Maker

I noticed that this machine had two kneading blades in the bottom that kneaded the dough (as opposed to Grandma’s one kneading blade). In addition to the two pins, it did not mix in just one direction. Rather, the two pins rotate in a fashion that seems to knead the bread dough and develop the gluten better than your standard machine. Additionally, the pan is a traditional horizontal bread pan that comes out looking like bread you would bake in your oven.

New Zojirushi BB-CEC20:                                               Old Zojirushi BBCC-S15:

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine pan and paddles Zojirushi BBCC-S15 Bread Machine pan and paddles

While inspecting the kneading blades, I noticed that they were metal and coated with a non-stick material, just as Grandma’s was.


One thing that the new machine does not have that Grandma’s old machine does have is a tray in the bottom of the machine to catch crumbs. Having a tray like this would aid in cleanup, but it’s not the end of the world.

Zojirushi BBCC-S15 Bread Maker crumb catching tray


I decided to get started with the most difficult thing I could think of. As I mentioned before one of the things I was most anxious about testing was the new Zojirushi BB-CEC20’s capacity to adequately handle whole wheat dough (mixing and developing the gluten adequately) and also its ability to mix two batches of whole wheat dough. The reason I call this the ultimate test is because most bread machines discourage you from using 100% whole wheat. Because of the excellent 1 year warranty that comes with the machine, I decided to try this first just in case I somehow damaged the machine!

As I was beginning to start the ultimate test, my husband declared that if I was going to do a fair and honest review, I should purchase a basic bread maker from a department store and do a true comparison. I decided why not?! He ran out to Bed Bath & Beyond for me and purchased the cheapest bread maker he could find – an Oster EXPRESSBAKE model 5838 it was not on sale but was still only $69.95. We decided that we could give it to my younger sister since she’s always wanted one (that is, if the motor didn’t burn out after my ultimate test!).

The Oster brand was packaged fairly decent, although I liked the way Zojirushi BB-CEC20’s packaging protected the sides so the machine wouldn’t shift from side to side. Notice in the picture how the Oster packaging just had a top and bottom Styrofoam piece:

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine packaging Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Maker in box

When I pulled the manual out of the box, this is what we were given:

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine beat up manual

If I’m going to pay $69.95 for a product, I would expect ALL parts of what I pay for to come in decent condition. The state of this instruction manual was discouraging.

As for the inside of the machine, it did have some cardboard packaging supporting the inside of the bread pan, but the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 packaging on the inside still seemed to be more sturdy and supportive (Oster on the left, Zojirushi BB-CEC20 on the right):

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine packaging Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine packaging

Before performing the ultimate test, we decided to take a few other comparison pictures just for kicks. (Oster brand pictures are on the left while the comparison Zojirushi BB-CEC20 pictures are on the right):

The bread pans with blades: Both pans’ blades remove from the pan, as seen in the picture. I was more impressed with the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 blades as they seemed more heavy duty. I also liked the fact that Zojirushi BB-CEC20 has two blades to knead the dough:

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine pan and blades Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine pan and blades

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Maker blades Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Maker blades

The display/control panel:

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine control panel Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine control panel

The pan and drive bearing: The Oster brand on the left has a space between the pan and the drive bearing. However, notice in the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 picture on the right, it shows a sealed rubber gasket to keep crumbs from getting down into the bearing. I’ve been told that this helps extend the life of the bearing.

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine drive bearing Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine drive bearing

In the following picture, you’ll notice the Oster bread pan next to the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 pan. As I was taking the Oster pan out of the bread machine it bent significantly. I was able to bend it back, but this was one more reason I was happy I bought the Zojirushi BB-CEC20. Also, the Oster is a squarer pan while the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 is more of a traditionally shaped loaf.

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 and Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Maker pans Zojirushi BB-CEC20 and Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine pans


Here is my tried and true 100% whole wheat recipe I have used for years in my Grandma’s Zojirushi bread maker. For the ultimate test, I simply doubled the ingredients:

Whole Wheat Bread for the Automatic Bread maker

2 tsp. SAF instant yeast 2 Tbl. Grandma Eloise vital wheat gluten
2 tsp. Grandma Eloise dough enhancer 2 Tbl. canola oil
2 Tbl. Grandma Eloise Tofu milk or powdered milk 1 ½ c. cold water
2 Tbl. sugar or honey 3 heaping c. freshly milled whole wheat flour
1 tsp. salt

Measure all ingredients exactly. All the measurements except for the heaping cups of flour are to be level. Add each of the ingredients into the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Home Bakery Machine. Select the white bread setting and push start. The bread will be ready to eat in just 4 hours. From this basic and simple wheat recipe you can create an assortment of delicious breads and rolls by adding nuts, raisins, fruits, etc. Experiment and have fun!

I doubled the ingredients and placed them into both bread pans of the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 and the Oster. I pushed the button for whole wheat and let the machines begin to knead (Oster on the left, Zojirushi on the right):

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine ingredients in Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine ingredients in

I noticed as it began to knead, the Oster had a harder time mixing together. Keep in mind, this was a double batch of ingredients, testing how well the machines handled mixing a double batch of dough. I had to help it along with a spatula during the mixing process. The Zojirushi BB-CEC20 needed a little bit of help from the spatula, but not as much as the Oster:

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Maker mixing Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Maker mixing

As the kneading process continued, this was what I noticed – the Oster was not nearly as progressed and mixed as the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 was during the same point in the kneading process:

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 and Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine mixing progress

Not only was the Oster brand not as kneaded together, it only mixes the dough in one direction. The Zojirushi on the other hand kneads and pulls the dough from one side and then it switches directions and kneads and pulls in the other direction. Notice in the following picture how the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 is pulling the dough from the left to the right, like a taffy machine. This is definitely what I wanted in a bread maker so that the gluten in my bread would develop appropriately and give me a great texture.

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine well mixed dough

Further along in the kneading process, I noticed that the Zojirushi pan was really clean. The blades had pulled and kneaded the dough so that everything was completely mixed and kneaded together. Compare that to the Oster and you notice that the pan still had chunks of flour stuck to the sides of the pan:

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 and Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Maker pans with finished dough

After both machines finished their kneading cycles, I took a picture of the dough in the pans. The Zojirushi BB-CEC20 kneaded the dough so well that there was nothing left on the sides of the pans. It was all in one ball. The Oster left pieces on the sides of the pans:

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine pan with finished dough Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine pan with finished dough

Next, I took a piece of dough out to test the gluten development. My mother taught me that to test the gluten, you oil your hands and take a golf sized ball and slowly begin to stretch it from side to side until it is just about paper-thin. Dough that has good gluten development will stretch without breaking apart too early. Baked bread that has good gluten development doesn’t contain air pockets and is not doughy. In the picture on the left, you’ll see the Oster whole wheat dough. In the picture on the right, you’ll see the Zojirushi dough. The Zojirushi gluten was definitely more developed. As you’ll notice, the Oster dough’s gluten was definitely not as developed because it would not stretch and it would break apart as you stretched it.

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Maker dough gluten development Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Maker dough gluten development


Part one of the ultimate test involved mixing and kneading 2 batches of 100% whole wheat bread dough. Both machines mixed and kneaded but the results were varied. As you can notice in the above “gluten test” pictures, you see that the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 obviously kneaded the dough quite a bit better than the Oster. Also, during the kneading process the Zojirushi didn’t seem to labor or get bogged down while the Oster seemed to really work. I took a video of the Oster machine during the kneading process to give you an idea of how hard the machine was working. I started to worry that the motor would burn out. There was an obvious chemical smell coming from the Oster machine. The Zojirushi BB-CEC20, on the other hand did not make any strange noises or smells. This was what I was hoping for.

Because I made a double batch of dough in each machine, I cut the dough in half and put half of it back in the respective machines to finish the rising/baking process (please note that a bread machine is only made to bake one loaf of bread at a time!). With the other half of dough, I made two baguette loaves – one with the Oster dough and one with the Zojirushi dough. These both turned out quite nicely in my baguette pan (Oster loaf on the left, Zojirushi loaf on the right):

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine / Bread Maker Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine / Bread Maker


The second part of my ultimate test involved finding out how well the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 bread maker baked a loaf of whole wheat bread, and then compare that to how well an inexpensive bread maker baked a loaf. What I discovered was that in the end, both machines produced a decent loaf of whole wheat bread. I used the same whole wheat recipe in both machines and both tasted pretty good. If anything, the Oster produced a slightly more doughy taste, but really, you have to be a fairly picky taste-tester to notice that. Here are some pictures of the final results (Oster loaf on the left, Zojirushi loaf on the right):

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine finished bread Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine finished bread

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine paddle mark in finished bread Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine paddle mark in finished bread

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 bread left and Oster bread right Zojirushi BB-CEC20 sliced bread left and Oster sliced bread right


I decided after the whole wheat test, I should see how both machines did at a basic white bread, express-bake cycle. The following pictures show the final Oster white bread loaf (still in the pan). You’ll notice in the pictures some flour remnants that did not get kneaded into the rest of the loaf:

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine white bread in pan Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine white bread in pan

When I took the loaf out of the pan, I noticed that there were chunks of flour all around the loaf itself. The chunks scraped off really easily, and did not affect the taste of the bread necessarily, but it wasn’t a loaf I would want to give away to my neighbor! You’ll also notice that the loaf didn’t form very evenly – one side being taller than the other. Obviously, these are only aesthetic issues, but important items to note!

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Maker white bread Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Maker white bread

The following pictures are of the final Zojirushi white bread loaf. You’ll notice that it cooked uniformly and there is no flour remains stuck to the sides of the loaf. I would not hesitate to give this loaf away to my neighbor!

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine white bread in pan Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Maker white bread

The following pictures show the Oster loaf on the left and the Zojirushi loaf on the right. Although both tasted pretty much the same as the same recipe was used in both, the Oster loaf was slightly doughier than the Zojirushi loaf. You can tell by just looking at the pictures below that the Zojirushi loaf (right), when cut in half, has a nicer bread texture, is lighter in color and is not doughy. This is one difference I like because I tend to share my bread and I want it to look nice for my friends!

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Maker white bread sliced Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Maker white bread sliced


The Oster machine weighed in at 9.2 pounds while the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 weighed 15.6 pounds. The Zojirushi BB-CEC20 definitely felt and appeared more durable in comparison. My husband, being the mechanically-inclined man that he is, suggested we unscrew the bottom of the Oster to see if we could check out the belt and motor. He unscrewed the casing and we discovered that it was motorized by a single-pulley motor. I had to hand it to Oster for putting a geared belt in their machine:

Oster EXPRESSBAKE 5838 Bread Machine motorized by a single-pulley motor

Now, I didn’t want to take apart my nice Zojirushi BB-CEC20 machine to check out the internal mechanisms, so I called Kodiak Health, where I bought my Zojirushi from and asked them about the motor. I told them I was doing a review on the machine and was interested to know. They were very helpful and told me that it was run by a dual-pulley system and even offered to email me some images they had of the transmission, motor and dual-pulley system. They also gave me permission to post them here:

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine paddle system Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine paddle system

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine motor Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Bread Machine pulley system

Although the Oster was a 560 watt motor, powered by a geared belt, it was a much thinner belt and not nearly as wide. I was impressed by the durability the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 transmission, the 700 watt motor and belts offered.

CONCLUSION: “You Definitely Get What You Pay For!”

I will be returning the Oster EXPRESSBAKE model 5838 for a refund because whenever it is running there is a strong electrical smell that comes from the vent holes. It is cheaply built and despite the two loaves of bread that it made it was noisy, flimsy and continually stopped and started during the kneading process. I don’t want to risk giving this to my sister. On the other hand I am very pleased with my Zojirushi BB-CEC20. From durability to quietness to bread output, it looks like Zojirushi has done it again with the BB-CEC20. I will be recommending this one to my friends and customers and I look forward to years of good service from it.


I have really enjoyed conducting this review. I have really enjoyed my Zojirushi BB-CEC20 bread maker and I am excited to know how the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 measures up when it comes to the other cycles it offers such as the sourdough, jam, cake and meatloaf settings. I will keep you posted on how the Zojirushi BB-CEC20 stacks up with these other recipes.

You can also purchase a Zojirushi Bread Machine BB-CEC20 from Kodiak Health.

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  • Great review! Thanks, I have a Zojirushi rice cooker and love it. I’m thinking about getting this bread machine now.

    welbilt bread machine
  • I too started my machine bread making with a Zojirushi s-15 and i did like that machine verymuch. the only thing i did not like was the shape of the loaf, so i did some research and went and bought the Zojirushi bb-cec20 and i love this machine. if you are the kind of bread maker that likes to put in the ingredents and wlak away you will get a good loaf of bread in sometimes weird shapes depending on were the loaf settled after the last stir. if you are like me and want your loafs to look eceptional then all you need to do is pay a little attention to your dough and shape it up a little after the last stir and you will get a loaf that looks like it came from the store and taste like it came from the heart. Again i love my machine and would recommend it to anyone who love the smell, texture and flavor of home made bread.

    N Tanguay
  • Wow. That’s a thorough review. Professional job. Thanks!

  • Can you please tell me if this or any other Zojirushi breadmaker is made in Japan?

    Thank you.

    Norman A. Neville
  • I have this machine and it is made in China. I has worked great for me so far, as shown in this review it mixes and develops the dough better than any other bread machine I have ever used.

  • Have you done any reviews on the Zojirushi Mini BB-HAC10? I’m considering buying this machine as I’m a senior living alone so don’t need the bigger machine.

  • Does anyone know of a bread machine that is made in Japan? Thanks.

    Norman A. Neville
  • Great review. Do you plan on reviewing and comparing machines of similar price? Your point of “you get what you pay for” is well illustrated but it doesn’t give fair buying options.

  • I REALLY enjoyed your review. I had already ordered my Zojirushi bread maker and according to the tracking it should arrive today by UPS!!! (I can’t wait!) Do you have any additional recipies and where do you get the Grandma’s ingredients?
    Thank you! and Happy Baking!

  • Loved your review. I actually found you on line while doing research on the model BBCC S15, I believe that was your Grandmother’s model. (made in Japan) I just bought this at a garage sale for $15.00….the right price to try it! Also went to Zojirushi’s website to print manual and recipe book. I’m going to clean it up and try it out. Hope it works! Any words of advice about this model would be greatly appreciated!! I also mill my own wheat, so was happy to hear it does well with whole wheat breads. Doreen

  • I have been baking bread for 15 years but can’t get my Bread to rise in my Zojirushi. I use everything fresh, add gluten to my whole wheat, programmed longer rises, but nothing seems to work. Not evenusing white flour. Any suggestions?

  • I just bought a Zo CEC20. I had a REALLY old Zo that finally died after almost 20 years of regular use. I’m having a hard time with the rising of my 100% whole wheat breads with this new machine, even when using the normal dough conditioners like vital wheat gluten and non-diastatic malt. So I began really noticing the timing of the cycles on this new Zo and noticed that the whole wheat setting actually has SHORTER knead and rise times than the white bread settings! Can anyone explain this for me. I’m mystified!

  • Wikipedia: “In chemistry, polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) is a synthetic fluoropolymer of tetrafluoroethylene that finds numerous applications. PTFE is most well known by the DuPont brand name Teflon.”

    Just clearing that up because I have been looking for a bread maker that does not have a teflon coating. : )

  • To Paula the new Panasonic SD-RD250 has a Diamond Fluorine Coated pan. I don’t own the machine, I am at present researching which machine to buy

  • My husband has had an amazing & helpful best machine review site for a coup,e years now and this whole time I’ve been hinting to him that I’ve wanted a bread machine. Finally ive got one and I’m on my second loaf, first one didn’t turn out to good, I use an egg I stead of the recommend water amount. Hoping this one turns out! I’m soooo excited to explore the bread baking world.
    P.s. I’ll take all the advice I can get amount my z-bb-cec20 machine if anyone has any.

  • my zojirushi still works fine,and the loaves are still tasty,but TOXIC…be prepared to use your machine for a year and then toss it…the teflon on the mixer blades and on the pan itself flake like crazy…all that teflon goes right into the loaf….a real shame…..

    ron z.
  • Can you share your Granda Eloise dough enhancer recipe?

  • Grandma’s dough Enhancer http://kodiakhealth.com/catalog/product_info.php/products_id/2204

    Just passing through
  • Don’t understand ron Z.

    One can scratch Teflon (use wooden spoons or silicon\rubber spatulas) but I’ve had and used two “Z” s for about 3 years on one and over 1 1/2 years on the other.
    I tend to bake once a month and do 15 or 20 loaves except when I need a special loaf for some purpose – a friend with celiac and also some enzyme problem can’t touch gluten, wheat flour and some other ingredients – so I bake him rice bread from the Zojirushi manual with the machine.

    I have absolutely no peeling on paddles or pans(I have scratched but the scratches haven’t peeled or spread. Frankly, I wouldn’t want a breadmaker without some kind of release coating – I even use a very light olive oil mister on a couple of breads that always seem to stick.

    Ron, please no offense, but I have two “Z” machines purchased at different places at different times PLUS a new pan due to shaft connection failure mentioned above and I would think if this machine deserved such a drastic warning, I’d see or experience similar results on one of these – I haven’t. I am aware that there are anti-Teflon folks that attack it anywhere – and I believe you have a perfect right to believe what you wish, but if you have that bias, declare it. Some folks don’t realize such things occur – and “Z”s are a well made product and are far from the only ones using PTFE.

    s g gordon
  • I noticed in the picture that the side and bottom of both the whole wheat & white loaves are a lot darker than the top crust. I bought my BBCC-X20 four years ago and that crust problem is my biggest complaint. As a result, I don’t bake in the machine, just use it for kneading. I was hoping the newer model would have addressed that situation, but it seems it has not. I’ve called customer service a couple of times, but they aren’t able to give any good advice. They know it’s a concern, though.

    The machine-baked loaves develop an unacceptably tough, thick , and overdone crust on the sides and bottom while the top crust is very light and just barely done. That’s on a medium setting. Using the light setting improves the bottom & sides somewhat but then the top has just a thin skin of cooked dough. Using the dark setting cooks the top a bit more but then the bottom & sides are horribly overdone.

    I ended up buying a Panasonic SD-YD250 last year to be my “summer” bread baking oven. It’s missing some of the Zo features , but it bakes better. The sides & bottom are only slightly darker than the top crust. So I use the Panasonic during the summer when the heat keeps me from wanting to use my oven, and I use my Zojirushi during the cooler months and bake in my regular oven.

  • I used to have an old Westbend machine that did horizontal loaves beautifully. The crusts came out perfectly. Same darkness on the bottom and sides as on the top. Sadly the machine died from years of constant use or I’d still be using it.
    Now I have this silly Zojirushi BB-CEC20 that gives horrible soft light crusts (no crunch!) on the top whether I use the medium or the dark setting. The dough is fine but as to baking it the machine is a piece of garbage. Instead I have to bake loaves in the oven and that isn’t much fun when the weather is hot.
    I’m going to take the machine to the local repair depot and see if they can do something about this either by raising the baking temp or lengthening the baking time.
    I am very dissapointed in this rather useless but expensive toy.
    If this doesn’t work I’ll be finding another make to replace the Zojirushi.


    elsie burger
  • I really enjoyed your blog! I have been using Zojirushi BBCC-S15A, however I misplaced a kneading blade.
    I have contacted Zojirushi for replacement, but they told me they don’t make the type of blade anymore.

    It looks like you used the different blade from my misplaced kneading blade. I am wondering where you got the blade.

    Do you have any suggestion for where I can find a replacement blade?

  • I use a Zo BBCEC-20 and have had problems with the top of the bread not cooking. I usually cover the vents during the baking cycle and that seems to help a bit.

  • Has anyone used the new Zorijushi Virtuoso machine and if so, has the overcooked sides/bottom and undercooked top problem been fixed?

  • I was looking for a good review on bread machines and this was a very good comparison thank you! I also like the comments as I too will not use a product that has Teflon coating…Yes, I am one of those health nuts and proud of it. If I am going to make organic bread I am not going to put it in aluminium or teflon. Yes, there are other non stick options such as seasoned cast iron. I also hate to buy anything from China which is getting to be next to impossible. After doing much research online I have come to realize you still don’t get what you pay for. I guess I will have to stick with making my bread the old fashion way as I did in the late 1970’s as it seems all bread machines have issues and at prices of up to $250 & average life 3 years that’s a lot of dough for …well I won’t go for the joke. I am thankful for the info. Maybe one day an American company will make a good breadmaker that has no Teflon and works for longer than 3 years…but for now I guess I am back to the basics. My Kitchenaid mixer/w a dough hook will have to do from the late 1970’s & still working well made in the USA (Sadly now they too are also made in China & peole say they are not holding up.) Perhaps companies don’t want the products to last too long anymore because then you don’t have to buy another one for a long time. Happy bread making.

  • This was the most cleaver of all reviews that I have found on the net. I love to cook and bake and can make anything and everything well, except for bread. I’ve tried and tried.. while my crusts melt in your mouth.. my bread well.. just don’t drop it on your foot!!! Sigh. So… I think the Z is for me. I am not caring about light tops.. most of my bread would be toasted anyway. Now, to get it across the USA border. Next investigation, what will it cost. Best to you all!

  • It would be nice to see how the Z-machine does with the gluten-free cycle. Did not do so well in the old Z-machine model.

  • Terri,

    Zojirushi came out with a new model that is made to do gluten free breads and has gluten free recipes that come in the manual. I have not tried it my self but I have heard it works well.

    It’s called the Virtuoso, you can find it at: http://www.kitchenkneads.com/catalog/product/506

    You might call them and ask them about how it works for gluten free.

  • I bought the Zojirushi BBCC-S15A in 1992 and it continues to work like a charm! Obviously a great investment that more than paid for itself over the past 20 years. Shape has never been influential with me in so far as indicating taste since the bread is sliced and gone at one meal. There has been no flaking or peeling of the teflon and nothing has ever broken down…sometimes we have to admit to human error and carelessness on the part of some users! Jam making aspect is wonderful since I get to control sugar and quality of fresh fruit.

  • I just bought a Jojirushi BBCC-S15 at a thrift store for $9.99. I am trying to economize. I printed the manual and the cookbook off and I am all set. Hope it works ok. I turned plugged her in and did get a response, so it looks promising! Great website, and great advise. I’ll try your white bread first thing.

  • Can anyone tell me if what the difference is between a BBCC-15 and BBCC-15A? My 15A is developing a knocking sound and I was thinking of buying a back up,from ebay. It would be nice if they were interchangeable parts so
    I would like to know if they are the same.

  • I have the Zo BB-Pac20 and it must be defective. My bread does not rise evenly has dents in the sides as though it did not rise completely and had s a very tough texture. It also is very short and compact. The machine has a 1 year warranty but I don’t know who to contact. I can’t even find a place that addresses the issues I am having. I have made 5 different types of bread. I bought fresh Yeast even though the yeast I was using won’t expire until Dec. next year. The company I bought from does not accept returns after 30 days. I have a lemon here with a 1 year warranty. Just where do I get some satisfaction??

    Marie Melson
  • Hi Marie Melson, here is the link to zojirushi’s service centers list.

  • Need parts for bbcc-s15a automatic breadmaker, including bread pan, etc.

    Rolfe H. Green
    857 231 0248

    Rolfe H. Green
  • Sorry, but if you must compare the Zo to the cheapest machine you could find to make it look good, that’s not the machine for me. Who would buy a Mercedes if it only looked good in comparison to a Yugo?

  • Mickey,
    I think the review was mainly helping people not make the mistake of buying a cheap machine while showing off the Zojirushi. I’ve used a few bread machines that are in the upper price range and my Zojirushi that I have now is definitely better. So what I am saying is that you are looking at this review in the wrong way.

  • BBCC-S15 and S15A parts can usually be found on ebay. Not sure what the difference between the 2 models is. My S15A does not have the crumb tray. Otherwise they seem to be identical in looking at the user manuals on the zoji site.

    My S15A started making a loud knocking during kneading today in 1 direction only (other direction fine). Not sure what the cause is? Paddle shaft in pan or something else. Doesn’t make the noise if I hold a corner of pan while kneading. I may try lubricating the turning shaft on the pan and see if that fixes it.

    I also have a “finish” pan that I bought when I got the machine back in 1995. It doesn’t have the paddle or shaft for it in the bottom so you don’t get the hole in the bread bottom. You move the dough from the original pan to the finish pan after the first rise. You could buy an extra S15 pan on ebay and take the post out, fill the hole with a flush screw, to get the same effect.

  • I replaced my old Zojirushi with the BB-CEC20. I’m getting uneven results. Sometimes it comes out and sometimes it doesn’t. The loaves are usually dense. I miss the fluffy bread I got from the old one. I’ve tried everything and wasted alot of bread flour. The recipe book calls for 4 1/4 cups of flour–that seems like quite a bit over the old three cups from the old machine. Also, the recipe book calls for powdered milk instead of the older machine’s using fresh milk. Is there any thing that can be done. I’m about ready to get rid of it and go back to my Kitchenaid mixer.

  • We bought a Zojirushi model BB-CEC20 2 years ago. Really love it. The belt just broke. I have tried to order one on line as I took the machine apart with the intention of repairing it myself. We are from Alberta, Canada and the closest repair shop is located in British Columbia. I called the repair company and they advised me that the cost would be 50.00 for labor and 15.00 for the part, plus shipping and handling. By the time I pay for all the costs, I can purchase a new one for approximately 100.00 more. It is not worth my while to spend the money to repair it unless I could purchase the 15.00 part and do it myself. This unfortunately is not possible as the belts are not available to consumers directly. It is a real shame to through the whole machine in the garbage for a 15.00 part. We go to Phoenix for the winter months and so we asked if there was a repair depot in the state of Arizona and the answer was no. For these reasons, I would not buy another Zojirushi machine. It works great, but when you have a problem, the repair shop locations are not consumer friendly.

  • The Zojirushi Bread Machines are the best. We loved their rice cookers already and after trying Oster (god awful) Panasonic (eh) decided on the zojirushi. Had it 2 years now and have never looked back. we bought ours on zojirushibreadmachine.net was a little spendy but we found with bread machines, you get what you pay for. Just our 2 cents =) We are currently making loaves of Zucchini Bread! YUM!

  • Hi,I have A bb-cec20 and the drive belt is broken .I called zojirushi and they said , no internal parts were sold . All i need is A belt can U tell me the belt size and if any one offers that belt ? I see Alot of bread maker belts for sell on Ebay but Idon’t know if they will fit ? tks. Lamar

    lamar beasley
  • I just returned my unit. I baked four loaves with no problem. Baked five failures after that. I used the recipe exactly as it was in the manual that came with the machine. I felt lucky the seller I purchased it from would let me return it. If any one is interested I have photos of what the bread turned out not to be. So no matter how much money you spend you might be disappointed as I was. Guess I’ll go back to using my Bosch Mixer.

  • I looked up the pan, it is indeed teflon coated. they call it by the chemical name PFTE – which is the generic name for teflon…if anyone is looking for teflon free this is not! I think you should take that off the description. thanks.

    Liz K
  • I just bought the Zo BB-CEC plus a bread machine cookbook with recipes that were all tested on the Zo BBCC-X20. Could you please tell me what the differences are, if any, between these 2 models? I contacted Zo Cust. Service, and they just told me to stick to making the recipes that are in the BB-CEC breadbaker manual. ROLLEYES Thanks in advance for your help!


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