There is no excuse required to eat ice cream. An ice cream maker allows you to enjoy a variety of frozen treats -like sorbets, gelatos, sherbets and of course, ice cream – right from the comfort of your home. So now you do not have to miss out on having ice cream just because it is too hot outside or the traffic is bad or perhaps you were just not feeling like going outside!
An ice cream making machine is one of the best appliances you can add to your kitchen. It offers you the chance to actually have hygienic and healthy frozen desserts, without worrying about expiry dates or chemical preservatives. You control what goes in, what comes out and everything in between. Isn’t this just wonderful?
How To Choose the Best Ice Cream Maker
Chances are that after having read about the aforementioned benefits of it, the ice-cream-lover inside you is desperately wishing to get an ice cream maker. But hold on, how do you know which ice cream maker to buy and how to ascertain that it will be up to your requirements?
Don’t worry. In this section, I am going to discuss the types of ice cream machines available in the market and which one should you go with.
There are two primary types of ice cream machines available right now:
- A machine with a freezer bowl
- A machine with a built in freezer
Machine with a Freezer Bowl
An ice cream maker with a freezer bowl is a pretty good choice for budget centric buyers and first-time experimenters.
There are two main features that concern this type of ice cream machine. The first one is the insulated freezing bowl, which requires being chilled before being used, and the second one is a motorized mixer, which replaces the traditional paddle and churns the ice cream for you.
To use this machine, you need to plan your ice cream making, at least 12 hours (up to 24 hours) in advance. This is so that you put the freezer bowl in your freezer and give it ample time for chilling completely. Therefore, this type is definitely not a good pick for you if you usually have random cravings or if you are a person who is always out of freezer space.
However, once you have your insulated bowl ready, all you have to do is to put in your prepared ice cream mixture and press a button to get your ice cream prepared.
Most ice makers with insulated bowls make only a single flavor and if you want to make two flavors, you would have to wait for at least half a day. This should not be a problem for most people, but it’s better that you are aware of this possibility, if you ever feel like making multiple flavors in a day.
- Budget friendly
- Small & compact size
- Requires advance planning
- Usually, prepares a single flavor at a time
If you are interested, we have reviewed some of the trending ice cream makers with freezer bowl on our website. You can check them out by clicking here.
Machine with a Built-In Freezer
An ice cream machine with a built in freezer is an ideal option for the people who want instantaneous ice cream, without any serious planning, and have no qualms regarding the budget.
What makes this machine different from the one mentioned above is that it has a freezer like compressor built in, which quickly cools down all the ingredients itself (optimum temperature is reached in a few minutes). The cooling occurs while the ingredients are being churned, but some machines may have a different operational style depending on the texture you want.
While it is a bit pricey, an ice cream maker with freezer will automate all your preparing process and give out a variety of flavors to suit your mood or requirement. You can also put add ons like chocolate chip or rainbow sprinkle (click here for delicious recipes), to make your ice cream more appealing. However, this type is a bit larger than the freezer bowl version and requires a dedicated space on your kitchen counter.
- Pre freezing not required
- Quick production
- Variety of flavors
If you are old school, you might be wondering what happened to the traditional ice cream making buckets. Well, they still exist and can be purchased as well. These buckets use ice and rock salt for freezing the ice cream liquid. They are electric powered and hence require no manual churning. However, you will have to layer and replace the ice/salt, during the procedure. This can be a messy process, but for all your efforts, you will be rewarded with a large ice cream bucket instead of a small pint.
You may not have to buy a completely new ice cream making machine if you already have an electric mixer. You may have to check if the brand of your mixer also manufactures ice cream making attachments. One of the most famous brand that has an ice cream maker attachment is Kitchen Aid. We have reviewed its product on our website and think it is worth checking out, if you feel it is a good option for you.
Common Mistakes Committed by Ice Cream Maker Buyers
As with all electronic appliances, a good research is required to make a successful purchase. When buying ice cream makers, there are some blunders that people make regular, due to their assumptions or lack of knowledge. In this section, I am going to discuss the most common mistakes made by buyers, especially the first time buyers.
Size of bowl: The serving size of a machine is not related to its bowl size. Many people make the mistake of thinking both are the same things. Ice cream volume changes as it is being prepared in the bowl and the size does not keep churning / paddling in its calculation. Refer to the specifications for exact serving size of an ice cream machine.
Serving time: All the machines do not have the same or even similar serving times. An ice cream machine of a similar price and specifications may have a different production time due to different operational styles. As discussed earlier, freeze bowl type ice cream maker has a slower production time than an ice cream maker with built in freezer. If you want quick ice cream or several batches, opt for the latter type. Otherwise, go with the former type.
Cost of machine: High price does not equate to a quality machine every time. New buyers often make the mistake of thinking that spending premium money will give them a premium ice cream maker. Often times, all they get is a premium brand sticker on an average performing machine. A good ice cream maker will have minimum or no pre-freeze requirement, high quality manufacturing, safety circuits, easy cleaning design and a long warranty. While we cannot recommend an exact machine, since it depends on your ice cream choice and requirements, generally you would want to study the product you are interested in a bit thoroughly.
Machine size: Ice cream makers come in a variety of sizes and a few designs. Ensure that the one you are getting fits the space on your countertop and complements your kitchen aesthetics. You do not want to be stuck with a machine that is too large to be kept in your kitchen and has to be packed away after usage.
Summary of the Best Ice Cream Maker Reviews
Making ice cream can be a long and arduous task. Thankfully, with an ice cream maker machine you can make this task in to an easy and, eventually, sweet one. Ice cream prepared in an ice cream machine is quite soft and creamy. For keeping it in its fresh state, you should freeze it after preparation. After purchasing an ice cream maker, make sure to go through its manual for understanding how to run the machine optimally and produce the tastiest ice creams.
My purpose of writing this article was to make buying ice cream makers as simple as one two three for first time buyers. I hope it has helped you. If you require additional assistance or any clarification regarding doubts about some features, feel free to contact me using the web page or comment below.