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The 5 Best Old Fashioned Ice Cream Makers
For those looking for a fun and unique way to have dessert, the best old fashioned ice cream maker can be just the ticket. Not only is it more entertaining to make mint chocolate chip ice cream yourself (and with your kids), but you can customize the flavors to suit your preference. Never settle for lackluster ice cream when you can make your own. Read our old fashioned ice cream maker reviews & ratings to find the best machine today.
In This Article
Best Choice: Nostalgia 4-Quart Electric Bucket Ice Cream Maker
The Nostalgia Electric Bucket Ice Cream Maker with Two 2-Quart Canisters is the best old fashioned ice cream maker because you can mix two flavors at once and it is 30% faster than other machines.
The Nostalgia Electric Bucket Ice Cream Maker with Two 2-Quart Canisters can mix up to four quarts, which should be plenty for you and your family. The best part? You can mix two flavors at once. No more arguing over which flavor tastes better, and no more compromise. Everyone can get the taste they want without any hassle.
The Nostalgia Maker is also convenient because the two-quart containers can go straight into the freezer after getting mixed. Also, they come with clear plastic lids so you can see which one is which without having to pull the whole thing out. Making ice cream has never been easier, thanks to the high-powered motors inside this machine. They do all the work – you just have to bring the sprinkles. (Or the hot fudge, or the cherries.) Better yet, this product is 30% faster than the competition so you don’t have to wait as long for your treats.
- Elegant wooden finish
- Makes up to four quarts and mixes two flavors at once
- High-powered, low-maintenance motors
- See-through lids for easy distinction
- Exterior parts may feel a bit flimsy
Premium Pick: White Mountain Electric Ice Cream Maker with Wooden Bucket
The White Mountain Electric Ice Cream Maker with Appalachian Series Wooden Bucket is the best old fashioned ice cream maker because it can make up to six quarts in about half an hour and it is easy to clean and maintain.
The White Mountain Electric Ice Cream Maker with Appalachian Series Wooden Bucket seems like it could have come straight from an old-timey newspaper. Since we’re looking for the best old fashioned ice cream maker, it helps if the machine itself looks a bit old fashioned. Fortunately though, it operates like modern machinery, meaning you don’t need to strain yourself with every batch.
One thing that makes this product a best old fashioned ice cream maker is its size. Unlike other models, you can mix up to six quarts of your favorite ice cream mixture, ensuring there is more than enough to go around. However, if you don’t want to make that many quarts of ice cream, you can use fewer ingredients to get the amount you want.
The power and speed of this machine are also incredible. It only takes about half an hour to make a full six quarts with mix-ins, so you and your family can be enjoying fresh ice cream by the time you’re finished with dinner. This maker is also built tough, so it should last for years to come.
- Extra-large six-quart container
- High-powered motor
- Makes a full batch in about half an hour
- Old fashioned appearance
- Easy to clean and maintain
- Can only mix one flavor at a time
Best Value: Nostalgia 4-Quart Electric Wood Bucket Ice Cream Maker
The Nostalgia 4-Quart Electric Motor Wood Bucket Ice Cream Maker is the best old fashioned ice cream maker because the high-powered motor makes ice cream fast. A guide for ice cream recipes comes in a booklet, and delicious flavors are included.
The Nostalgia 4-Quart Electric Wood Bucket Ice Cream Maker is is the perfect blend of budget-friendliness and performance. Just because you and your family want fresh, homemade ice cream doesn’t mean you should spend a fortune. The best old fashioned ice cream maker doesn’t need to be high-end – it just needs to work well.
One thing we like about this machine is it handles all the work for you. A high-powered motor mixes the ice cream and any add-ins like chocolate chips and caramel in record time so you can enjoy a couple of scoops right away. The motor itself is also built tough, so you should be able to use this product whenever you get a craving.
If this is your first time using the best old fashioned ice cream maker, you may be wondering how to upgrade from the basic flavors like vanilla ice cream and chocolate ice cream. Fortunately, a recipe guide is included with the manual, so you’ll become a master of this machine in no time. Feel free to add extra ingredients of your choice to make the best ice cream in the neighborhood. Also, because it mixes as few as one quart of ice cream or up to four quarts, there’s plenty to share.
- Easy-to-clean bucket
- High-powered motor
- See-through lid
- Wooden design
- Some of the parts are not as resilient as others
Runner Up: AMERIHOME ICM6C 6-Quart Old Fashion Ice Cream Maker
The AMERIHOME ICM6C 6-Quart Old Fashion Ice Cream Maker is the best old fashioned ice cream maker because it can be used manually or electrically. It has a large capacity, capable of making up to six quarts.
Although we believe the best old fashioned ice cream maker is electronic, it’s nice to be able to craft your favorite flavors manually sometimes, just like the AMERIHOME ICM6C 6-Quart Old Fashion Ice Cream Maker does. This way, if there’s a power outage or the motor needs repair, you don’t have to wait to get a taste of your favorite flavor. This ice cream maker is ideal because it offers both options for you and your family.
Another thing setting this machine apart is the fact it comes with a handle, similar to a hand-crank ice cream maker that will allow it to serve as a manual ice cream maker or as an electronic one depending on your preference. You’ll be able to make tasty treats anywhere at any time. Bring it along for a backyard barbecue, or on your next road trip. Never be too far from a fresh batch.
The size and durability are also incredible. You can mix up to six quarts of your favorite flavor, which is perfect for family gatherings (or ice cream hogs). Each piece is built to last, so this product should enable you to enjoy ice cream all year long with no problems.
- Dual design – manual or electric
- Easy carry handle
- Large capacity – up to six quarts
- Authentic wooden design
- High-powered motor for fast mixing
- The motor will not turn off automatically when ice cream freezes
Honorable Mention: Elite Gourmet Old Fashioned Vintage Wood Bucket Ice Cream Maker
The Elite Gourmet Old Fashioned Vintage Appalachian Wood Bucket Electric Maker Machine is the best old fashioned ice cream maker because it is easy to use, plus it includes a leak-proof liner for easier cleaning.
We’ve already seen the best old fashioned ice cream maker, but we also want to share the Elite Gourmet Old Fashioned Vintage Appalachian Wood Bucket Electric Maker Machine as well. It helps to see what’s available so you can make sure you choose the right machine for your needs.
Overall, this maker is simple to use and easy to clean. It comes with a four-quart canister, which should be enough for both you and your family. The motor inside is robust, helping you make a full batch in about 40 minutes. It also comes with a drainage spout on the front, and a leak-proof liner on the inside. This way, you don’t have to worry about leaving a mess on your kitchen counter.
- Mixes up to four quarts
- Old fashioned wooden design
- Easy to use
- Leak-proof liner inside
- Requires rock salt to get the ice cream to freeze
Features to Consider for the Best Old Fashioned Ice Cream Maker
If you really want to get the best old fashioned ice cream maker, you need to understand the various elements involved. So, to help you refine your choice and ensure you get the top model, we’ve compiled a list of considerations to make during your search.
Chances are you’re not making ice cream for just yourself. Assuming your friends and family will all want a scoop, you need to make sure your ice cream maker is big enough to accommodate everyone. Typically speaking, these machines provide either a four-quart or six-quart container. In the case of the Nostalgia Electric Bucket Ice Cream Maker with Two 2-Quart Canisters, however, you can get two flavors, each with a two-quart container.
The size of the canister isn’t the only thing, either. You want to be sure your new machine won’t take up too much room, either as a countertop ice cream maker or in your storage spaces. We advise you to pay attention to the dimensions of each product so you can get a better sense of what to expect when it arrives.
Electric vs. Hand Crank
Although we’re looking at the best old-fashioned ice cream maker to churn ice cream, the fact is mixing ice cream by hand can be exhausting. However, in some situations, it’s also necessary. If you want to be able to make ice cream outside, for example, you need to be sure it comes with a hand crank. While electric ice cream makers are much faster and more convenient, sometimes you just have to be a little old fashioned.
Typically speaking, the way that an ice cream maker is supposed to work is by mixing the cream until it freezes, and then shutting off. This way, the crank won’t overwork itself, leading to motor burnout or a broken paddle. Unfortunately though, not all machines will shut off automatically. Not only that, but some models may not turn off immediately, which can still lead to damage. Overall, when using an ice cream maker, you need to pay attention so you can step in when necessary. Otherwise, you’ll have to get a replacement sooner rather than later.
Ice Cream Mixes
If you’ve never made ice cream from scratch, you probably aren’t familiar with the ice cream making process. Thankfully, some machines will come with recipe booklets to help you out. In some instances, you may need to use a prepackaged mix. Nostalgia makers, for example, are typically only compatible with mixes from the same brand. You want to pay attention so you can figure out how much you can customize each batch of ice cream.
Finally, some machines will work faster than others. For example, one ice cream maker may whip up a batch in 20 minutes, while another one could last up to an hour. Certain variables can change this, though, such as the amount of ice cream you make and how well the canister freezes. Overall, the speed of a product isn’t the most important feature, but it can help with your decision.
Benefits of Using Old Fashioned Ice Cream Makers
When it comes to dessert, ice cream is the great equalizer. Almost everyone loves a scoop (or two) of the cold stuff, which is why having the best old-fashioned ice cream maker is such a valuable investment. Here are a few of the notable benefits you get when buying one of these machines.
Family Time – nothing can be more fun that whipping up a batch of ice cream with the kids and setting up an ice cream buffet. Best of all, they can pick and choose toppings to include, making each batch even more enjoyable. If you don’t think an old-fashioned ice cream maker is best for your family but still want a manual ice cream maker to give your family hands-on fun, you can also try an ice cream ball.
Save Money – rather than going out and buying high-quality ice cream, you can simply make it at home. You’ll be surprised by how much you can save over a few months, particularly if your family loves dessert. Even better, you can create unique flavors you might not find in the store.
Versatility – while making ice cream is the primary function of these machines, they can also produce other cold desserts. No need for multiple machines like a sorbet machine, frozen yogurt machine, gelato maker or soft serve ice cream machine when you can have just one to do it all. Expand your dessert options and treat your friends and family even more. Look for an ice cream maker that can adjust hardness settings for both soft or hard ice cream.
Better Flavors – as with all other kinds of food, the best ice cream is the kind you make yourself. Nothing compares to a fresh, smooth, creamy batch – you’ll wonder why you didn’t buy one of these machines sooner.
Precautions of Using Old Fashioned Ice Cream Makers
While the best old fashioned ice cream maker can be an enjoyable addition to your kitchen, it can come with some potential downsides. Before making a final decision on which ice cream maker to buy, be sure to pay attention to these precautions first.
As we discussed above, one of the primary issues with mechanical ice cream makers is they don’t always turn off when they’re supposed to. Unfortunately, when the crank tries to mix a frozen batch, it can lead to extensive wear and tear, both on the motor and the rest of the machine. Never leave an ice cream maker unattended, as this can lead to significant damage. Another way to avoid overworking your ice cream maker is by getting a commercial ice cream maker that is built to withstand a lot of use.
Usually, the hardest working components of an old fashioned ice cream maker (i.e., the motor) are built tough. However, some of the other pieces may be relatively flimsy and break easily. Some examples can include the mixing paddle, the interior liner (where the ice sits), and the top of the metal canister. Look for stainless steel or other durable materials that will last longer to protect your ice cream maker in the long run. Keep in mind you may have to replace these parts regularly to ensure your machine works correctly.
Finally, with ice cream making, these kitchen appliances are typically hassle-free, but sometimes they can leak. We advise you to place a towel underneath while mixing, just in case. Not only can the liner crack over time, but the condensation from the cold can make the exterior wet as well.
Although we’ve looked at a lot of excellent machines, we have to say the best old fashioned ice cream maker is the Nostalgia Electric Bucket Ice Cream Maker with Two 2-Quart Canisters. This machine is our top pick because you can make two different flavors at once – something no other ice cream maker can do. We also appreciate this product is well-made, thanks to the high-speed motors and wooden shell.
You and your family will enjoy crafting tasty treats all year long with this machine. Also, because it can do two batches at once, feel free to experiment with different ingredients and add-ons. Dessert will never be the same.