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Let us all admit that summers are incomplete without having ice creams. And there’s something special about soft serve ice creams that always take back to us to our childhood summer vacation. Though soft serves are plain and simple, the taste and flavor of the soft ice cream beat the fanciest ones. And now you can prepare your all-time classic favorite dessert easily with the best soft-serve ice cream machine.

A soft-serve ice cream maker lets you swirl the soft texture of ice cream right into the cone. Such machines are great for home use especially if you love hosting summer parties. You can also use one along the poolside for the people to have a soft frozen bite. But do you really need a reason to buy the machine? A good quality home soft serve maker is already a treat to yourself as you can prepare fresh and flavorful serves on demand.

Best Soft Serve Ice Cream Maker Machines

Best Soft Serve Ice Cream Maker Machines

So after analyzing various products, we’ve picked the 5 best soft server machines. Beat the heat with flavorful soft ice cream.

1) Cuisinart ICE-45P1 Mix Serve 1.5-Quart Soft Service Ice Cream Maker

Cuisinart ICE-45P1 Mix Serve 1.5-Quart Soft Service Ice Cream Maker, White

Trying to make softies at home for the first time? Then get the Cuisinart soft serve ice maker that works as expected and makes professional-quality frozen desserts. This 1.5-quart machine features 3 built-in condiment dispensers that dispense your favorite mix-ins. Simply press the lever of the container to add mix-in instantly.

It is important to note that the front condiment container has a curved edge and is best to dispense small mix-ins like sprinkles. Whereas, the other two rectangular containers dispense large mix-ins like M&Ms, choco chips, etc.

Cuisinart’s fully automatic soft-serve ice cream maker features a double-insulated freezer bowl. The presence of cooling liquid within a double insulated wall keeps the bowl cool for a long time. Simply fill the bowl with the right mixture and the automatic ice cream maker will handle the rest. The mixing arm inside the bowl mixes and aerates the mixture to make a soft serving.

Once all the ingredients are mixed properly, simply grab on the handle and pull down to dispense the soft ice cream. The handle and soft dispensing give you feel like operating a commercial soft serve ice cream maker but far more easy to operate and maintain.

Our Verdict

Pros:

  • Removable drip tray to keep tabletop dry and mess-free
  • A dot in the center of the tray gives you an idea of where to hold the cone or keep the bowl for proper disposal
  • Produces 1-1/2-qt ice cream in just 20 minutes
  • No chemical, salt, or ice required
  • Non-slip feet holds the machine in place
  • Heavy-duty motor mix, freeze and dispense the mixture
  • Comes with a recipe book that includes flavorful recipes for making soft serves, yogurt, sorbet, and sherbet
  • Best automatic soft serve ice cream maker for home use

Cons:

  • Need to clean all the removable parts after use

Key Features:

  • 1.5-qt capacity
  • 15 watts
  • 3 built-in condiment dispensers
  • Double-insulated freezer bowl
  • Pull-down handle
  • On-Off power dial
  • Weighs 16.70 lbs
  • 3-year manufacturer warranty

2) VEVOR 2200W Commercial Soft Ice Cream Machine

VEVOR 2200W Commercial Soft Ice Cream Machine 3 Flavors

Installing a good ice cream machine on your food truck or kiosk shop is a great way to attract more people during summertime. And Vevor commercial soft serve machine can serve a small crowd easily. Powered by a 2200W commercial-grade motor, the unit is designed to dispense 2+1 flavors of ice cream. In short, you can serve 3 different flavors using a single machine.

Vevor commercial countertop soft serve ice cream machine comes with GMCC double compressors. These high-quality air compressors are durable with a full copper core. The use of copper indicates cool functioning while rapidly cooling the chambers. It also saves energy and produces less noise for quiet dispensing.

A bright LCD display lets you set various functions easily. Thanks to its simple and practical design that requires no fuzzy logic to operate. You can freely modulate the machine according to the different tastes. Plus, the panel also helps to control the quantity hardness and temperature at the same time.

No need to take any parts off for everyday cleaning of the ice cream machine. Simply pour the drinking water into the hopper at the end of the day and press the clean button. Let the water be in the chambers for 3-5 minutes before pressing down all the handles. Repeat the same step 2-3 times until you feel the hoppers are completely clean.

Our Verdict

Pros:

  • External cone holder
  • High-quality air compressor with full copper core
  • High and low voltage protection and warning
  • 4 powerful frozen evaporator
  • A perfect machine for small restaurants, cafes, snack shops, supermarkets, etc
  • 2 built-in stainless steel containers can be used to make 3 flavors of ice cream including 2 single flavors and 1 mix flavor
  • The pre-cooling function keeps the ice cream mixture fresh all night
  • Best commercial soft serve ice cream machine with 2 hoppers

Cons:

  • Heavyweight product
  • Offers no warranty

Key Features:

  • 2x 6L capacity
  • 2200W
  • Double compressor
  • Pre-cooling function
  • 304 stainless steel construction
  • 1-click cleaning
  • Puffing technology
  • Weighs 208 pounds

3) Hamilton Beach Half Pint Soft Serve Ice Cream Maker

Hamilton Beach Half Pint Soft Serve Ice Cream Maker

Love treating yourself with frozen desserts when the temperatures reach soaring high? Then make a place in your kitchen for Hamilton Beach electric soft serve ice cream maker. This mini ice cream maker is capable of making half pint soft serve in one go. Instead of waiting for long hours to freeze the mixing bowl, you can make fluffy soft-serve within minutes.

Hamilton Beach small ice cream maker comes with two 12oz freezer bowls. Fill these freezer bowls with fresh ingredients and in minutes you’ll e able to enjoy fresh, fluffy, and frozen dessert.

There are no complex functions to set. Hamilton Beach compact home ice cream maker comprises a single button. This button turns the machine on and off. Turning it on will start mixing the ingredients. You can easily stop the cycle in between to add toppings of your choice. Then let them mix for another 1-2 minutes for the best instant soft serve.

Our Verdict

Pros:

  • Mix and serves in the same bowl
  • Compact design, plus, lightweight unit is travel-friendly
  • Makes fresh, homemade ice cream in minutes
  • Includes recipe
  • Storing the bowl in the freezer at a max temp of 0ºF will give the best results
  • You get 2 color choices, Blue and Pink
  • Best at-home ice cream machine under $100 for home, picnic, boat, and RV use

Cons:

  • Single serving only
  • Bowls are not dishwasher-safe

Key Features:

  • 1/2 pint capacity
  • 2x 12oz freezer bowls
  • 120 volts
  • Aluminum bowl
  • Single-button design
  • Weighs 6.44 lbs
  • 1-year limited warranty

4) DASH My Pint Electric Ice Cream Maker Machine with Recipe Book

DASH My Pint Electric Ice Cream Maker Machine

Kids love ice cream. But why treat them with store-bought desserts when you can make healthy desserts at home easily. The Dash My Pint electric ice cream maker machine lets you make flavorful frozen dessert in only a couple of minutes. Its tall, bottle-like shape eases storage inside the freezer. Measuring 5-inch wide and 8.5-inch tall, the mini gelato maker is an instant solution for cold cravings.

To make a perfect single-serving portion in one go, remove the top and place the glass in the freezer. Let it be in the freezer overnight. And when you’re ready to make your smooth ice cream, simply take the bowl out from the freezer, add in your favorite ingredients, and mix-ins. Cover the lid, press the button and let the mixture churn for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, open the lid and enjoy your fresh homemade dessert with the spoon included. You can use the spoon of mixing toppings. Also, there’s a special built-in storage for the spoon to keep it in place. This travel-friendly design of the unit makes it perfect to make and feed organic frozen desserts to kids on the go.

Our Verdict

Pros:

  • Includes recipe book that contains yummy recipes for ice cream, froyo, sorbet, frozen yogurt, etc
  • 3 color options; Aqua, Pink, and White
  • Budget-friendly unit
  • Includes cooling bowl and mixing spoon
  • Long cord for convenient ice cream making process
  • All non-electric parts are easy to wipe clean
  • Best single-serve ice cream maker for kids and adults

Cons:

  • Instructions on the manual are not very user friendly
  • Not strong enough for a thick consistency

Key Features:

  • 0.4-qt capacity
  • 12-watt
  • one-touch power
  • Mixing spoon
  • 8.5-inch high
  • Weighs 2.24 lbs
  • 1-year manufacturer warranty

5) Nostalgia Old Fashioned Electric Bucket Ice Cream Maker

Nostalgia Electric Bucket Ice Cream Maker With Easy-Carry Handle

Bring the nostalgia of ice cream making back with the Nostalgia electric bucket ice cream maker. This traditional-looking unit is actually an electric soft serve maker machine that can make 4-quarts of ice cream in minutes. In addition to that, the aluminum canister is also great for making frozen yogurt, gelato, softies, etc.

The 4-qt aluminum canister goes in the middle of the bucket. First, fill the canister up with the ingredients, close the lid, and then layer it up with ice and salt. Turn on the machine and let the electric motor do the rest. Speaking of the motor, the lock of the motor keeps all the parts secured while churning the mixture.

The bucket features an easy-carry handle for easy transportation. Besides, the exterior of the bucket is made from real wood that gives it an old-age ice cream bucket look. And to help to get started with the electric self-serve ice cream maker machine, the unit comes along with a recipe booklet.

Our Verdict

Pros:

  • Good for making gelato, soft serves, frozen yogurt, etc
  • Carry handle with grip for easy transportation
  • Made delicious soft serves in 20-30 minutes
  • The bucket is made with real wood slots that create a beautiful traditional look
  • The see-through lid lets you monitor the churning process conveniently
  • Comes in dark and light-colored finishes
  • Best rated ice cream maker for picnics and home use

Cons:

  • Need to use ice and salt for better cooling
  • A bit flimsy

Key Features:

  • 50-watt
  • 4-quart capacity
  • Electric motor
  • Aluminum canister
  • Weighs 9 pounds
  • 1-year limited warranty

Is soft serve ice cream better than scooped hard ice cream?

This really depends on an individual’s taste. While some people might like soft serve in a cup or cone, others prefer scooped hard ice cream. But it is important to know that sprinkles, choco chips, or sweet sauce stick to a soft-serve ice cream better than a hard one. Also, soft-serve ice cream shows huge profit as compared to hard scooped ice cream as it uses less milk fat.

Is Soft Serve healthier than ice cream?

With people becoming more health-conscious with each passing day, it is important to know whether soft-serve ice cream is healthy or not. Yes, a soft serve is healthier than hard ice cream as it contains less milk fat. Also, the incorporation of air while mixing the cream gives it a smooth texture that is easy to digest. Although it uses sugar for sweet taste, generally, the amount is less than hard ice cream. So in a nutshell, soft-serve ice cream is healthy to eat in a limit.

Difference Between a Hard and Soft Serve Ice Cream Machine

Apart from visible differences, there are a few differences between soft-serve ice cream and hard one. First of all, is their making process. Hard ice cream is made by a liquid base that is pasteurized to kill harmful bacteria. Then the liquid is allowed to rest for hours at temperatures below -10º. After a couple of hours, you can see the liquid has taken up a hard texture which is easy to scoop using an ice cream scooper.

On the other hand, you first need to freeze the soft serve making bucker or container for a couple of hours or overnight. Then add the soft serve mix in the container which contains less milkfat, around 3% to 6%. Close the lid and let your home/commercial soft serve ice cream maker machine churn the mixture for 20-30 minutes. The churning process incorporates air into the mixture that gives it a light and fluffy texture. Thus, which is called soft serve.

Storage of both types of ice cream is one of the main differences. While you need to keep the hard ice cream below -10ºC to -15ºC, the soft serve stays good at -4ºC to -5ºC. Also, no need to buy a scooper for soft serve as the same machine that churns the mixture, dispenses the soft serve on demand.

Soft Serve Ice Cream Recipes

Classic vanilla soft serve is a hot favorite of many people, including me, for ages. Also, vanilla blends with milk and cream better that gives a mild, flavorful taste. However, you can increase or decrease vanilla quantity according to your taste.

To make vanilla soft serve ice cream at home, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • Whole milk
  • Sugar
  • Heavy cream
  • Vanilla extract
  • A little bit of nonfat dry milk powder

Once you get all the ingredients, begin by mixing them in a bowl. Use a hand mixer or immersion blender to mix all the ingredients properly. Blend it for a minute or two, then cover and let the mixture rest in the refrigerator for a couple of hours. At the same time, you should also leave the freezer bowl of the ice cream machine in the freezer for a fluffy texture.

Take the churning bowl out of the freezer to pour the mixture. Now cover the bowl with the lid and turn on the soft-serve ice cream maker. Let the machine churn the mixture for a couple of minutes. After 20-30 minutes, you can pull down the handle to dispose of the soft fluffy ice cream right into your cone or cup.

While this was the basic vanilla ice cream recipe, you can use mango syrup or strawberry extract to make different soft-serve ice cream recipes at home easily.

Conclusion

Flavorful, healthy, and fluffy, soft-serve ice cream hits differently than hard ice cream. The beautiful smooth twirls of these softies take us back to our childhood days. While it is impossible to bring the childhood days back, you can relive those memories by buying the best soft-serve ice cream maker machine. A home soft-serve ice cream maker is compact and less expensive than the commercial ones.

The same machine does the work of mixing, churning, and dispensing, thus, saving you utensils, time, and energy. Keeping the benefits of the machine apart, if you love to have a frozen dessert as soon as the temperature rises then you must make a place for a good soft serve machine for fresh homemade dessert on demand.

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