Ice Cream Makers Buying Guide

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It’s a treat to enjoy the fruits of your labor with a bowl of homemade ice cream. And nowadays, you don’t even have to spend time turning a crank (unless you really want to). Today’s ice cream makers are easy to operate and perform perfectly for a consistent batch of ice cream each time.

Types of Ice Cream Makers

Types of Ice Cream Makers

You’ll find a variety of ice cream makers on the market, from old-fashioned models you crank by hand to units that simply sit on your counter and churn away. The capacity of the maker you choose is really a matter of personal preference, as is the level of involvement required -- whether you want to just dump in the ingredients and have the machine do the rest, or play a more active role by making the ice cream mixture yourself. “Small” usually means 1.5 to 2 quarts, while bigger barrels make at least 4 quarts and may be electric or hand-cranked.


If you want to make ice cream the traditional way, this is your answer. Whether you choose an electric or hand-crank model, these barrel/bucket models are labor-intensive, as ice and rock salt need to be continually added to produce great ice cream.

shop Old-fashioned

No salt or ice are needed to create 1 quart of ice cream, frozen yogurt, sorbet, or frozen drinks at home with this ice-cream make...r. Just turning the crank occasionally for 15 or 20 minutes is all it takes. The unit s freezer bowl goes into a... read more


The MaxiMatic Elite ice cream maker features a maple finish pine tub with strong galvanized hoops, high torque motor 3500rpm with ...over-heating protection system, and 2 function design that allows easy conversion from electric to manual hand crank.... read more


Find Ice Cream and Yogurt Makers at! The Elite Gourmet 4-Quart Old Fashioned Electric Ice Cream Maker churns out delici...ous homemade ice cream in less than 40 minutes. It features a 4-quart heavy duty aluminum canister and a powerful 90-rpm motor, so making ice cream is fast, convenient and fun for the whole family! It’s great for entertaining at family parties, BBQ’s and picnics using all of your favorite ice cream, sorbet, gelato and even frozen yogurt recipes. The motor turns a six-fin paddle that whips air into the ingredients producing a smooth, rich soft serve ice cream. The paddle quickly crushes cookies, fruit, chocolate chips or a variety of other yummy toppings and thoroughly integrates them into the mixture. For a firmer ice cream texture, use the included traditional manual crank after removing the motorized crank and hand churn the old-fashioned way for a thick, creamy consistency. The old-fashioned pine wood bucket holds ice and rock salt, keeping the canister at the optimal 10°F temperature. All parts conveniently remove for easy cleaning. Makes 4 quarts of cold and creamy ice cream, gelato, frozen yogurt, or sorbet. Hand-crafted solid pine wood bucket. Easy to operate and clean. Great for barbeques, family parties and picnics. Heavy duty aluminum freezing canister. Powerful electric motor-driven paddle to whip creamy consistency. Use included classic die-cast hand crank to manually churn to firmer consistency. Makes fresh ice cream in just 40 minutes. Motor is equipped with over-heat protection. Color: Brown. read more

$89.99 $74.99

Dimensions: 14L x 19W x 14H in.. 4 qt. capacityIncludes an electric motor and a die-cast hand crankMotor equipped with over-heatin...g protection systemHand-crafted solid pine wood bucketFeatures heavy duty aluminum freezing canister. Make ice cream the old-fashioned way with the Maxi-Matic Elite Gourmet 4 qt. Electric/Manual Ice Cream Maker - Wood. Perfect for making memories with your family, this ice cream maker gives you the option of making ice creaming manually or electrically. You'll love the hand-crafted, solid pine wood bucket that turns this ice cream maker into a work of art. The motor is equipped with an over-heating protection system while the handle is dye-cast. Able to make up to 4 quarts of ice cream, you'll be able to enjoy freshly made ice cream all summer long. read more


Less-expensive ice cream makers require you to pre-freeze the canister/bowl, and some require more freezing after the ice cream is made. Self-cooling makers -- those that have their own compressor -- freeze the ice cream as it’s being made.

Mixer attachment

Some high-end stand mixers offer an attachment to churn out ice cream. Pre-freezing the canister is necessary.

shop Mixer attachment
European Gift

Nemox professional gelato, ice cream, sorbet maker, and granite mixer. Prepares 2 quarts every 25-30 minutes, enough for 10-12 ser...vings. Includes built-in refrigeration, tempered glass cover, and high impact ABS body. Optional removable stainless bowls allow for additional flavor preparation and cleanliness. Features auto stop when top is removed, and programmable timer for accurate mixing. 1 year warranty complete, 2-years on motor. Volt 120 operates in any standard U.S. 15 amp outlet. Made in Italy. read more


Designed for use with KitchenAid stand mixers. Easily converts any KitchenAid stand mixer built after 1990 into an ice cream maker.... Fits bowl-lift stand mixers designed after 1990. Adaptor ring on the bottom of the bowl fits tilt-head stand mixers... read more


With the Nostalgia Electrics MTC100 Mix `N Twist Ice Cream and Toppings Mixer you can create a variety of delicious, creamy frozen... treats at home anytime. Use your favorite store-bought ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet or sorbet and add scrumptious... read more


Make up to two quarts of ice cream, sorbet, frozen yogurt and more—all at the flip of a switch! This insulated bowl converts Pro...Line 7-qt. and 6500 KitchenAid tilt-head or bowl-lift mixers into fast, easy-to-use ice cream makers. Simply store it in the freezer to chill, attach it to the stand mixer, add ingredients and let your KitchenAid do the rest. read more

Purchase Considerations

Purchase Considerations

The first thing to consider when buying an ice cream maker is the capacity of the machine -- how much ice cream you’ll want to make in each batch. You can get machines with a built-in freezer; otherwise, plan on pre-freezing a bowl before use, which requires adequate freezer time. The average cycle time for ice cream makers is 20 to 30 minutes, but compare products before buying. Look for “extra” items that come with the maker, like an additional bowl or paddle.


Have a budget in mind and stick to it. Know that a higher price does not always mean better ice cream, but it might mean less work.


Old-fashioned makers typically produce a 6-quart batch, while self-cooling models typically make 1.5 or 2 quarts.


Depending on the style of maker, there may be some prep required. Some electric canister models and the ice cream attachment for the mixer require freezing. Units with their own compressor are fuss-free -- simply pour in the ice cream mixture and start the machine.


If you like ice creams with chunky pieces added in, opt for a machine that can handle the pieces. Some machines have size limits for add-ins.

Cycle Time

The average cycle time is 20 to 30 minutes for a smaller batch but will increase with a larger capacity. Be aware of the time needed to make and then properly freeze the ice cream before serving.


Old-fashioned barrel/bucket models require churning the ice cream outdoors, where the melting ice/salt mixture can freely drain without damaging surfaces.


Pricier units offer settings ranging from super-soft to extra-firm, allowing you to control the consistency of your ice cream.


An extra paddle or bowl is nice to have if you really like whipping up batches.

Kitchen on sale

$99.99 $79.99

Expand the potential of your KitchenAidr mixer with this ice cream maker attachment featuring the largest single bowl capacity in ...the industry. Just pre-freeze the bowl to make frozen desserts and soft-serve ice cream in just 20-30 minutes. Plastic... read more

$599.99 $399.95

The SmartScoop rethinks the ice cream maker with 12 hardness settings and a "thinking" technology that automatically senses and re...tains your hardness preference until scooping time. With a commercial-quality countertop presence, this self-refrigerating... read more

$79.99 $63.99

Make delicious frozen desserts your way with this Cuisinart fresh fruit and ice cream maker attachment. Fully automatic design for... easy operation Unique paddles create chunky or smooth desserts Large spout on top to add fruit, ice cream and yogurt mixtures for unending frozen dessert and drink options Churns and freezes 1.5-qts. in 15 to 25 minutes Removable paddle and freezer bowl for easy clean up What's Included Ice cream maker Two paddles Recipe book Stainless steel Hand wash Manufacturer's 3-year limited warrantyFor warranty information please click here 8"H x 9.875"W x 9.875"D 1.5-qt. capacity Model no. IC-50 Size: One Size. Color: White. read more

$545.00 $299.99

Rich, creamy ice cream and denser, lighter gelato in any flavor you can dream up are just a few easy steps away-without messy ice ...or salt. Cuisinart's fully automatic ice cream maker features a professional-grade compressor-freezer and 60-minute... read more

$129.99 $99.98

Make homemade ice cream, no rock salt needed, with the Thermo-Electric Ice Cream Maker.Ice cream and frozen yogurt taste so much b...etter when you make them at home! This attractively styled ice cream machine uses thermoelectric energy, so no chemicals,... read more

Unique Bargains
$23.99 $11.55

Made of the metal material, is a ideal DIY tool for you. Designed with spring and rotary wheel on the handle, is convenient to mak...e round ice cream. read more

Unique Bargains
$25.99 $12.55

Made of the metal material, is a ideal DIY tool for you. Designed with spring and rotary wheel on the handle, is convenient to mak...e round ice cream. read more

Unique Bargains
$28.99 $14.05

Description: Made of stainess steel and spring design, easy to scoop ice cream and grasp this handle tight, ice cream will out in ...bowl easily. Press the handle when the spoon fill in the cream, made a ice creams. Can be hang on the wall easily. ? read more

Unique Bargains
$24.99 $12.18

Made of the stainless steel material, is a ideal DIY tool for you. Designed with spring and rotary wheel on the handle, is conveni...ent to make round ice cream. read more

Unique Bargains
$26.99 $13.04

Made of the stainless steel material, is a ideal DIY tool for you. Designed with spring and rotary wheel on the handle, is conveni...ent to make round ice cream. read more

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