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Nov 10, 2009 09:19 PM

Ice cream maker recommendation

I am eyeing this cuisinart

anyone have any good or bad things to say about this?



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  1. I have a similar Cuisinart and it's fine, does a great job for ice cream. Just remember that you need to chill the bowl, that's two-quart bowl, in your freezer, in advance. It's even more convenient if you can leave the bowl in the freezer, although most people don't have freezer space for a permanent two-quart bowl resident.
    Be sure to thoroughly chill your custard first and note that you will get a "soft-serve" like product from the machine; freeze it and you'll have a premium ice cream consistency.
    That's the only drawback, otherwise, I'd say go for it.
    BTW, I got mine on eBay for $40, NIB.

    3 Replies
    1. re: bushwickgirl

      i agree with bushwickgirl.
      the actual "processing time" (i.e. churning) takes the least time of any step.

      as far as i'm concerned, the bigger the bowl, the better. 2 quarts sounds good. seems expensive, though.

      1. re: bushwickgirl

        Thirded. Works well. Do not expect cheap ice-cream. Store-bought is cheaper, but this makes far better stuff.

        Takes 24 hours to chill down the bowl - so you need to plan. As bwg said keep it in the freezer if you can. The bowl can also be used as a white wine cooler, an ice cube holder or a keep-my-Igloo-cool thing. But it's the first thing to go when trying to cram stuff in the freezer.

        BTW, it is noisy. You will want to operate the churner in another room.

        1. re: Paulustrious

          I have that machine too and agree, it works great, the only problem with it is the noise. After a while you will want to operate it in another house.

          Here's my favorite ice cream base recipe. It has no eggs, which lets the flavor of milk really come through (not that I don't love ice cream with eggs!), and a couple surprise ingredients make the texture really great:

          If I'm making a flavor other than vanilla I'll reduce the vanilla bean used (or eliminate it, or maybe use a few drops of extract).

      2. I have actually used quite a few in my life and I own the Cuisinart model that you have listed. The only other unit that really liked was the Kitchen Aid Gel Bowl. You have to own a Kitchen Aid stand mixer to use this one, thought.

        Advantages of the KA: Larger bowl (Pro for amount of ice cream made – con for freezer storage), ability to control mixer speed, no extra machine needed, slightly easier to clean.

        Advantages of Cuisinart: Smaller bowl (Pro-storage in freezer Con – amount of product made), price.

        And although it’s rare and easily avoidable I have been making ice cream and using my KA for something else, so then it was a good thing to have two machines.

        I bought the Cuisinart simply because of price, Costco special sale $40. I also bought an extra bowl on craigslist for $15. So I spent less than I would have for the KA and have two bowls.

        As other people have mentioned you will not save money but you will make far superior ice cream, have fun doing and be able to control the flavors, consistency and sweetness to your own taste. (I make a 85% extra dark chocolate ice cream that true chocolate fans, not sugar fans, rave over, along with my pumpkin pie, apple-sicle, watermelon ice, etc. It’s really a lot of fun.)

        1. People, the best decision I ever made, was to throw out the ice cream maker! By definition they can't make good ice cream because they are too slow. The longer the ice cream takes to set, the larger the ice crystals that form, even in super high fat custard based ice creams.

          Instead, just go to the local butcher or food wholesaler and get your hands on some dry ice. Throw all the cooled ingredients (whether a precooked custard or not) into the Kitchen Aid with as much dry ice as you need. Turn on nice and high. Leave for a few minutes, and there you have it. So much easier! The dry ice just evaporates as it freezes the ingredients. Makes very smooth ice cream.

          5 Replies
            1. re: porthacking

              seriously? is this okay? and that simple?

              1. re: lollya

                Yes it works, but it is not that simple. Dry Ice is frozen CO2 and is very cold, it can freeze the skin on contact so you must use some precautions. #1 you need to buy the dry ice, then you need to crush it into a very fine powder, if you don't get it to this fine powder stage you will actually have MORE ice crystals in you ice cream. Once you have the very fine powder you can pout it into the mixer while it is running.

                You then need to make sure that all of the dry ice has melted; otherwise you can freeze parts of your mouth or worse yet your stomach if you ingest dry ice crystals.

                It does work, and it's fun to do with kids, but I can whip out a batch of excellent ice cream before you have run to the store, bought your dry ice and finished smashing it.

                1. re: RetiredChef

                  Does that include the time to freeze your cylinder??


                  1. re: Davwud

                    I have two that stay in our downstairs freezer, so they are ready to be used anytime.

                    I guess you could call that cheating or being prepared ;-)

            2. I was going to suggest Krups electric ice cream maker because the one we own is 10 years old and a work horse BUT when I went to the Krups company site they no longer list ice cream makers in their product list. Searching, only a lid to the model I own was avail. for purchase. So, I wound stay away from a Krups brand that might be kicking around in a department store....having access to parts & customer service matters to me.

              1. There have been some interesting replies here! I think any of the drawbacks mentioned can be surmounted easily. I have been using the cuisinart model for 3 years, making many many different sorbets and ice creams, and it is a great tool, such a simple process.
                About the timing issue, our family would do the old fashioned ice cream churn with salt and ice and hard labor, putting all the kids to work. It seemed to take FOREVER, that could just have been the anticipation! But I don't think the excess ice crystals issue calls for dry ice, unless you are into that kind of thing. I have found with the cuisinart, it is essential not to churn too long, really just till the mix starts to stand on itself a bit, then stop and remove the ice cream from the cooler insert as quickly as possible, I use a dough scraper for this,and get into the freezer to set fully, about 2 hours, but it all depends on the recipe.
                If the noise of the machine bothers you, you can insulate it with a large, bath size, towel, folded and wrapped around. this will also speed up the timing a bit.
                When you get the hang of it, you can make some amazing ice cream. Find a good basic custard recipe, I like Alice Waters'. Then always take into consideration the water content of the flavorings you use, less added water is best. So far some of the best flavors I have made, wild strawberry, salted caramel, toasted coconut caramel, made with coconut milk, oaxacan chocolate, chocolate candied blood orange, plum wine sorbet, passionfruit lycee sorbet,
                really your imagination can go nuts, and it is a wonderful complement to homemade desserts, to be able to craft the perfect ice cream flavor to go alongside. The biggest problem will be that you eat too much ice cream.....