On a hot summer day, nothing beats a scoop or two of fresh ice cream, but handmade ice cream maybe even better. Making your own ice cream provides you with complete control over flavorings and ingredients, which is particularly useful if you have food allergies or want to avoid certain components or additions.
You can make whatever sort of ice cream you want in the comfort of your own home with an ice cream maker, but how do you choose one? We gathered some of the most popular ice cream machines, including fully automatic, electric, and soft-serve models, and put them to the test in our lab side by side. Each ice cream machine was evaluated on its simplicity of use, design, ice cream texture, mix-in distribution, cleaning ease, and overall value. We then sent a few to some of our most seasoned house testers to get even more feedback.
Here’s our roundup of the top ice cream makers, based on hours of testing in home kitchens and our lab.
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List Of Top 10 Best Ice Cream Makers in 2022 Reviews
10. DASH Electric Ice Cream Maker
If you don’t need multiple pints of ice cream, this machine creates over two cups in about 30 minutes. To use this flash chiller, freeze the machine’s bowl overnight, then fill it with the base and reattach it. It turns your foundation into creamy, delectable frozen ice cream in 30 minutes. It’s small enough to fit in your kitchen cabinets or freezer. It also comes with a plastic spoon to assist you to stir in your toppings.
The freezer bowl and lid must be hand washed; all other pieces are dishwasher safe.
Included: Freezer bowl, lid, ice cream machine
9. Nostalgia Electric Bucket Ice Cream Maker
Working for these delicious, creamy treats used to be the only way to get them. The classic style of this ice cream machine pays homage to old ice cream churns. You won’t have to make the ice cream yourself, so don’t be concerned. The work is completed entirely by an electric motor. The procedure is visible because of a clear top, and the canister is easily stored according to a removable lid.
Flavor kits—vanilla crème, chocolate, or strawberry—are available for people who aren’t comfortable generating their own flavors. Pre-freezing the canister isn’t required, unlike most of the other choices on this list.
Included: Removable interior canister, machine, recipes (sold separately)
8. Ice-Cream Maker Machines Cuisinart ICE-60W Cool Creations
This ice cream maker unit, which comes from the well-known Cuisinart brand, can manufacture a broad variety of frozen treats in the comfort of your own home. It can make frozen yogurt, gelato, and sorbet in addition to ice cream. It’s now simple and quick to treat your family and guests to delectable ice creams made using this equipment. Furthermore, the ice cream preparation procedure is simple and rapid thanks to a single button operation.
7. Cuisinart ICE21R Ice Cream Maker
Cuisinart is a well-known ice cream maker brand with models to suit all budgets. Even though it lacks some of the luxuries seen in higher-end versions, the ICE-21 guarantees delicious handcrafted ice cream in just 20 minutes. The catch, according to our home tester, is a pre-frozen bowl.
The procedure is straightforward and clean. In a “cold-scrape” model, the double-insulated freezer bowl slides into the base, followed by the mixing paddle and the plastic cover. The paddle scrapes frozen batter off the bowl’s interior walls, reincorporating it. Our home tester had soft serve-like ice cream after around 20 minutes. Immediately put everything in the freezer to avoid crystallization.
Even with its simple design, this can help you make wonderful ice cream. Add mix-ins right into the freezer basin when the batch is almost finished spinning. Because this model’s capacity (1.5 quarts) is smaller than typical Cuisinart models, consider batch size when following recipes. When our tester utilized a recipe that wasn’t entirely scaled-down, she experienced overflow. “Even the laziest dessert aficionados won’t find much to complain about,” our tester said.
6. Cuisinart ICE-30BC Pure Indulgence 2-Quart
In as little as 25 minutes, the Cuisinart Pure Indulgence creates up to two quarts of wonderfully thick, velvety-smooth ice cream or sorbet. And there’s no need for human labor: a built-in motor spins the mixing paddle inside the double-insulated freezer bowl to generate the frozen delight on its own. You may even drop fruit or sweets into the machine’s extra-large ingredient spout, and it will mix everything together.
Our Lab experts adored the resulting ice cream and sorbet, giving it top marks in tests for producing very thick and tasty vanilla ice cream as well as smooth, flavorful sorbet. Oh, and the card slot on the base provides for neat storage. Just make sure you have adequate freezer space for the huge bowl, as it must be pre-frozen before use.
5. Hamilton Beach 68330N Automatic Ice Cream Maker
One of the most cost-effective ways to produce huge quantities of ice cream at home is using the Hamilton Beach 68330N 4-Quart. It’s not required to pre-freeze your ingredients, and preparing numerous batches in a row is straightforward if you have plenty of rock salt and ice. It produces delectable, soft ice cream that is just firm enough to keep a scoop shape. Overall, it’s simple to operate, with a motorized paddle that churns the ice cream and stops when it reaches the desired consistency.
Regrettably, this ice cream machine is extremely noisy, bordering on deafening. It’s nearly hard to have a conversation while it’s running, so our testers wore earplugs or noise-canceling headphones while it was running. Cleaning up can be a pain since each batch contains approximately 3 cups of rock salt and 12 pounds of melted ice. In addition to being difficult to clean, the machine always seemed to make a huge mess all over the place, even when we used a plastic tray to confine it. If you want traditional ice cream, are on a budget, and need large amounts, the Hamilton Beach 68330N is a fantastic choice. Be prepared, though, to vacuum up a lot of rock salt every time you use it.
4. Cuisinart Frozen Yogurt Soft Service Ice Cream Maker
Electric ice cream makers for home usage were introduced by Cuisinart, which continues to enhance its product line. The ICE-70 topped our list of best-in-class products after both lab and home testing. With a basic control panel and an easy-to-read LCD screen, this one makes a lot of ice cream.
The speed of the mixing paddle can be adjusted for ice cream, gelato, or sorbet. Each option’s time is set automatically but can be changed manually. The machine turns down after the timer. For our home product tester, the gentle churning of the gelato option was appealing since it was authentic.
It outperformed comparable freezer bowl models in our lab. Creating velvety smooth ice cream was simple after the bowl was chilled. If you remove the lid’s cup, there’s a handy hole for pouring in the add-ins. This feature was appreciated by both our home and lab testers. In addition to being easy to store, our Lab testers liked how lightweight it is.
The machine’s paddle was also noteworthy. It was easy to combine M&Ms into ice cream. Easy to wash by hand with warm soapy water.
This ice cream maker has the drawback of being noisy when churning it. This means you can’t manufacture ice cream on a whim. For an ice cream craving, we recommend freezing it.
3.Cuisinart ICE-45P1 Mix Serve Ice Cream Maker
While a soft-serve ice cream cone is hard to beat on a hot summer day, we found creating one ourselves to be a bit of a hardship. The Cuisinart ICE-45 performed a wonderful job at making frozen yogurt and ice cream, and it can quickly make and distribute ice cream cones, making it a good choice for bigger gatherings. The mix-in dispensers are a success at parties, and they make a pretty large batch each time, even though they don’t work with all sorts of candy.
Unfortunately, we discovered that the ice cream prepared with the Cuisinart ICE-45 has a very narrow window of suitable consistency for serving – about five minutes or so. It went from being too thin to keep its shape to be too thick to churn, forcing us to scoop ice cream out of the bowl and basically undermining the purpose of a soft-serve machine. Larger candies clogged the dispensers, which was a nuisance to clear out. Overall, we wouldn’t suggest it to most people unless they have a strong need for homemade soft serve and are prepared to go through a lot of trouble to get it.
2. Lello 4080 1.5-Quart Ice Cream Maker, Stainless
In years of testing, this machine produces the smoothest homemade ice cream we’ve ever tasted. Because it lacks a removable bowl and is huge and heavy, it may be more difficult to clean than our top selection. The astronomical price tag may deter casual dessert makers, but ice cream connoisseurs will find it well worth the investment.
The sleek, gleaming Lello 4080 Musso Lussino is the ice cream maker’s pinnacle. It produced the richest and most exquisite ice cream faster than the other machines we tried, and it, like the Whynter ICM-201SB, is self-cooling. It’s pricey, large, and heavy, and it looks like a curved stainless-steel spaceship landed on the kitchen counter in a 1960s sci-fi movie. The Musso Lussino, on the other hand, is the way to go if you produce many batches of ice cream each week, plan to turn ice cream manufacturing into a vocation, or simply want the best. It’s simple to operate, with a timer and a pause button so you may add mix-ins or check the progress of your ice cream.
1. Whynter ICM-15LS Automatic Ice Cream Maker
This all-star equipment is made by a company that specializes in refrigeration and air conditioning. To begin creating ice cream, no pre-freezing or salt is required (a huge convenience, since you can make frozen treats on a whim and make sequential batches of ice cream without any downtime between).
Our kitchen appliance experts particularly like that this model has a quiet compressor, which means it can handle the majority of the work without making too much noise. To make the procedure more exact, it has numerous modes and an easy-to-read LCD timer, as well as a Motor Protection Function that switches off the machine to prevent harm if you move away and the mixture freezes solid.