Who doesn't love a delicious, creamy bowl of ice cream? Ice cream, frozen yogurt, gelato, and other frozen treats similar to it are the favorite of many people all over the world. A lot of us crave ice cream all the time, but we don't fancy spending money to go to places like Dairy Queen to spend $8 for one serving.
We also don't want to trek to the store each time we want to indulge, because even if store-bought ice cream is cheaper than restaurant servings, the dollar amounts still add up in our heads. We need the best ice cream maker for our homes, so we can make our favorite treats in the comfort of our kitchens.
We are excited to share with you ten of the best ice cream makers available on the market for you to buy today. The market for ice cream makers can be confusing, and you may not know where to start. We understand this, and would like to share with you only the ten best products money can buy. Let's jump right in to view our top ten list of the best ice cream makers so you can get started making your favorite treats right in the comfort of your own home.
We found and answered a few important frequently asked questions regarding how ice cream makers work, what different types there are on the market, how long it typically takes for ice cream to be made using a top-quality maker, how much you should spend on ice cream makers, and the price range of our top ten list.
1. How Do the Best Ice Cream Makers Work?
After pouring the ice cream mixture into the machine, the machine's paddle will churn the mixture while freezing it. By churning it, air is mixed into the ice cream to give it a smooth and creamy texture. This also ensures that ice crystals don't form, which would destroy the ice cream's flavor.
2. What Different Ice Cream Makers Are Out There?
There are traditional ice cream makers that make a gallon or more per person and require no additional planning or freezing for a day before making the ice cream. These are the most affordable options. There are also frozen bowl ice cream makers that don't need salt or ice to operate, often have less of a mess to clean up, and require minimal physical labor.
There are built-in freezer/compressor ice cream machines that produce better, creamier ice cream and require no planning. There are KitchenAid ice cream bowls that don't require the purchase of extra appliances if you already have the mixer. There are also ice cream balls that require no electricity or freezing ahead of time. You can choose between a pint or a quart for these types.
3. How Long Does It Take to Make Ice Cream?
It usually takes about 25 to 40 minutes to be ready, but it will need to sit in the freezer for at least 2 hours after being made to ensure it's the right consistency.
4. Overall Price Range of the Best Ice Cream Makers?
You can get a traditional maker for about $50, and compressor makers can cost at least $200. The more convenience the machine provides, the higher the price tag. For our list we only chose those models which we feel offer the best value for the money and are great options for our budget-conscious readers. The overall price range for our top ten list is $29 to $719.
How We Reviewed
Our team spent much time and effort researching different models and types of ice cream makers to bring you this unbiased, best-of list featuring only the best products available on the market today. We reviewed these items based on the following parameters: their unique respective features, their pros and cons, their prices, and an Amazon link to direct you to where you can buy each item. We reviewed:
- No Freezing Necessary: The Mr. Freeze innovative ice cream maker comes with a built-in cooling system that allows you...
- Hard & Soft Serve: Easily choose between hard or soft serve settings with a simple control panel. No chemicals, alcohol...
- Personal Serving Size: The 1.5 pint capacity provides just the the perfect amount for small servings.
This best ice cream maker has all the bells and whistles you could want. It has 12 hardness settings, and can make sorbet, frozen yogurt, gelato, and ice cream. The bowl and churn blade are removable to make them easier to clean, and the machine will sense the hardness of the mixture based on what treat you've chosen. It will stop churning when ready and keep it cool for up to three hours until you're ready to serve it.
- Self-contained frozen dessert maker that does not require pre-freezing. High efficiency CFC-free compressor
- Removable bowl and churn blade for easy storage and effortless cleaning
- Reliable built in audible timer. Voltage: 110/120V 60Hz
This heavyweight compact model is substantial, well-built, handsome with its stainless steel body, and takes up little counter space as it works its ice cream magic. It's easy to use and quiet in operation, and it's easy to scoop out the ice cream because of its removable bowl with a built-in handle.
- Makes 2-quarts of ice cream, frozen yogurt, gelato or sorbet , UC Cubic Feet - 1.65 inches
- Improved paddle with faster processing time
- Control panel with LCD screen and 3 settings with multiple speeds
This best ice cream maker really takes the guesswork out of making frozen treats, and has three different treat options: ice cream, gelato, or sorbet, with different speeds for each. The machine automatically shuts off when it's done churning, and the integrated measuring cup is great for add-ins to your mixture, such as jimmies.
- This Certified Refurbished product is tested & certified by Cuisinart to look and work like-new. The product includes...
- Brushed stainless-steel housing; heavy-duty motor
- Large ingredient spout for easily adding favorite mix-ins
This affordable maker features a heavy-duty motor that will finish churning ice cream in just 25 minutes. It also has a large ingredient spout for add-ins such as fruit, chocolate, or nuts. This maker will churn out a whole two quarts.
- 1-1/2-quart capacity bowl freezes 3 quarts of ice cream or sorbet per hour
- Fully automatic: pour ingredients into bowl, press two buttons
- Timer controls operation for different frozen confections
This sleek, shiny, pricy, best ice cream maker produces premium ice cream that looks like you bought it at top dollar from the store. The automatic churner finishes making ice cream in 22-25 minutes and decreases the number of ice crystals that form in the mixture. It even automatically shuts off if the ice cream gets too hard. You won't regret this purchase.
- Delicious versatility - make ice cream, frozen yogurt, custard, sorbet, gelato and sherbet all with one ice cream...
- Fully automatic - no stirring needed. Just add ingredients, ice & rock salt – it does all the work, then stops when...
- Over 20 recipes included - try the recipes inside or create your own unique taste by mixing in candy, cookies, or fresh...
Now you can finally have the old-school ice cream you've been craving without the work of the old-school machines. All you need is plenty of rock salt and water, a place to store four quarts of ice cream, time to make the ice cream, and the recipes from the helpful included recipe book.
- Makes up to 2.0 quarts of ice cream, gelato or sorbet in 20-30 minutes.
- Dasher rotates inside the bowl to spread, scrape and mix thoroughly.
- Easy to clean with warm soapy water.
If you already have a KitchenAid mixer in your kitchen, all you need it this best ice cream maker attachment. You can use it on most models, excluding those that have six, seven, or eight quarts. You can also use it with the tilt-head style mixer or the bowl-lift style.
- This Unit makes 4 quarts of delicious ice cream, frozen yogurt or gelato
- Pair with Nostalgia ice cream kits
- With a plastic bucket that wipes away messes with ease
This budget-friendly best ice cream maker lets you use old-fashioned rock salt and ice to freeze the mixture, while its built-in motor does all the physical work. Although the results won't be the creamiest, it will make a ton of ice cream your whole family will enjoy. It's sure to still taste far better than store-bought ice creams.
- Makes 1 quart of ice cream, sorbet, frozen yogurt, frozen drink
- No salt or ice needed; freezer bowl and paddle do the work
- Aluminum freezer bowl cleans easily
Freeze the bowl of this best ice cream maker for approximately seven hours and crank the manual churner for 15 to 20 minutes to get amazing soft serve that's ready to eat immediately. You can also put it in the freezer if you want a firmer ice cream. This is a great maker that allows you to reap the benefits of your efforts, and kids love it.
- Easy-lock Lid with Window – Lid is designed to remove and lock easily. An ingredient window allows you to pour...
- Mixing Arm (not shown) – Mixes and aerates ingredients in freezer bowl to create smooth soft ice cream, Dispensing...
- 1 1⁄2-Quart Freezer Bowl (not shown) – Contains cooling liquid within a double-insulated wall to create fast and...
This fully automatic machine will make up to 12 servings at a time, or 1.5 quarts. It has a cone holder that fits both flat-bottomed wafer cones and point sugar cones and all you have to do is press on the lever just like you would a commercial soft serve machine. It even has three dispensers for toppings and mix-ins on the side.
Everyone loves a well-made ice cream, and we hope we've given you a few substantial options for the best ice cream makers money can buy on the market today. If you're interested in making creamy, top-of-the-line ice cream that will have everyone wondering how you did it, we recommend higher end models such as the Cuisinart options or the Lello 4080 Musso Lussino. Although these are higher in price, they're worth it.
If you crave that hard-to-beat old-fashioned salt and ice frozen treat you remember from the good old days, we recommend the Nostalgia ICMP400 or the Donvier Manual models. These are affordable and will offer that taste you remember from your childhood.
If you are interested in options and multiple types of frozen treats, we recommend the Breville BCI600XL Smart Scoop or the Cuisinart ICE-70. These can make sorbet, ice cream, gelato, frozen yogurt, or any other frozen treat you crave.
Pick out your favorite ice cream maker from our list and follow its Amazon link to purchase it or find out more information.
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