As a business owner, a commercial ice cream machine is a core piece of equipment you will need in your ice cream shop or local coffee shop.
The type of machine you will need will depend on the type of establishment you planning to run.
Moreover, smaller coffee shops that are serving ice cream only as a side gig and only during the summer months, could do with the smaller capacity machines.
On the other hand, the full-time ice cream shops would want the higher capacity, truly commercial ice cream machines.
We reviewed the top 10 ice cream machines based on pricing, capacity, flavor selection, and durability.
How to Choose a Commercial Ice Cream Machine
There are several types of soft-serve ice cream machines that you can choose from. First, you got to decide if you want air-cooled or water-cooled. Second, you want to choose between floor or countertop model.
Finally, you may want to examine the ice cream machine’s flavors selection and alarm capability.
Floor-Model or Countertop Machines
You must decide if you need a countertop or floor model machine depending on the amount of ice cream you expect to sell and the space you have.
If you expect to sell a high volume, a floor-model machine will be most practical. On the other hand, a countertop soft serve ice cream machine is best if you’re not expecting to sell a lot of ice cream.
Water or Air Cooled
You have to attach water-cooled machines to a pipe, limiting where you can place them. On the plus side, they store a lot of energy and cool the product faster as a result.
The benefit of an air-cooled soft serve ice cream machine is that it can be placed anywhere.
However, the room must be cool, so you’ll need air conditioning. On the other hand, a water-cooled machine can work well even in a hot space.
A low mix alarm is another feature that you want to consider. This is a bell or buzzer that goes off when the product level in the machine gets low.
This is important because the soft ice cream mix freezes to a solid and destroys the blades on the dasher when it drops below a certain level.
Pressure-Fed vs. Gravity
Pressure-fed machines use a pump to move the mix to the freezing cylinder from the hopper. Gravity soft serve machines use gravity to move the soft serve mix into the freezing cylinder through feed tubes.
For high volume use, pressure-fed machines are generally used. A pressure fed soft serve ice cream machine yields a higher overrun. In other words, it makes more product due to the amount of air whipped into the mix.
On the other hand, gravity machines tend to be more affordable and easier to operate and clean. Pressure-fed ice cream makers are able to control the overrun air more effectively.
Finally, we come to the most important part of our review – the top products on the market. Below is a table comparing them.
You need to know how many flavors you will be offering before buying a machine. Some ice cream makers only serve one flavor, while offering what is known as a twin twist.
In this case, you have the option of dispensing two flavors in a twist or dispensing separate flavors.
You won’t need more than a single flavor machine if you want to serve a minimal amount of soft-serve ice cream, for example as an addition to a dessert.
|Product Name||Best Feature /b>||Price|
|VEVOR 2200W||Best overall|
|Mophorn Commercial Soft||Best Soft Serve|
|Costway Commercial||Best small ice cream machine|
|Happybuy Commercial||Best Commercial Fried Ice Cream Machine|
|Whynter-ICM 200-LS||Best value for money|
|Happybuy Commercial Hard Ice Cream Maker||Fastest-cooling Ice cream Machine|
|Lello 4080||Best Light Ice Cream Machine|
1.VEVOR 2200W– Best Commercial Ice Cream Machine
This is an amazing ice cream machine with 3 flavors and nighttime pre-cooling.
Its output is 5.3 to 7.4 gallons per hour. The best thing about it is that you control what goes into your dessert.
During the mixing, you can add your favorite food. The product features a stainless steel body and looks elegant. It is sturdy, delicate, durable, and easy to clean. It is a high quality product with full copper core, low noise and energy saving properties.
The machine is easy to operate with an LCD display. Production is inexpensive and simple. You can switch things up according to taste. The display lets you control the quantity, hardness and temperature at any time.
It is a multi-purpose machine with an external cone holder. It’s a great choice for home and commercial use, especially for bars, dessert shops, cafes, milk and tea shops, hotels, and western-style restaurants. It can make 4 different shapes of ice cream.
The machine is maintained easily with re-cooling and one-click cleaning function. When you need to clean it, just pour water into the hopper and press the clean button. In a few minutes, press down the handle to discharge the water fully.
- 3 flavors
- Easy to clean
2.VEVOR 1400W User-Friendly Commercial Ice Cream Machine
This user-friendly unit makes 5.3 gallons an hour. It produces hard serve ice cream.
The ice cream must be frozen after being removed from the machine.
The high-tech LCD display system provides a visual display of the time. The operation interface is indicated as well. The machine sends out processed ice cream automatically.
It features a big frozen cylinder of 20 L within 1 hour, voltage of 110V/60Hz, rotation speed of 3000 R/min, class 1 electric shock resistance, under 40 dba noise, major power up to 1400 W, fast cooling and low cost.
The power consumption is about 1.4 kilowatt per hour on average. The frozen cylinder capacity is 4.3 L /1.1 gallons. The refrigerant is R410a with 380 g. It weighs 60 kg net (about 115 pounds). It is 19.6″ x 15.7″ x 27.5″ in size.
The newly designed hard ice cream machine is made of stainless steel. A microcomputer with digital display controls it. Production is simple and inexpensive. You get mashed fried ice instantly and fried ice moving within tens of seconds.
To make ice cream, all you need to do is put the ice cream powder into a clean container and add water heated to 40℃. Normally, you need 2.5 kg of purified water for every kilo of ice cream powder.
You can add sugar, milk, and flavoring. Stir the mix evenly, turn the machine on, put the ice cream mix into the feeder so it starts seeping into the mix cylinder, and check that the mix doesn’t exceed the max line. When the display shows “end”, remove the ice cream.
- Easy to use
- Very convenient display showing all functions
- You need to freeze the ice cream after removing it from machine
3.Mophorn Commercial Soft Ice Cream Machine
This machine features a high efficiency stainless steel evaporator, fast freezing, and a micro-computer automatic control system to control the process efficiently.
The outstanding soft serve ice cream machine makes two single flavors and one mix flavor.
The LCD screen displays work status at all times. You can adjust the hardness of the product from 4.0 to 7.0 (we recommend 6.0). Of course, it will depend on your customers’ tastes.
Mophorn’s unit is widely used in restaurants, cafes, supermarkets, snack shops, fast food shops, and other places with high traffic. It’s suitable for indoor or outdoor use. It is made of high quality, durable electrical elements. The advanced production technology makes operation safe, easy, and reliable.
The world-famous brand compressor ensures stable and reliable freezing, high output and low energy consumption. There is class 1 shock resistance, high and low voltage protection, and a warning device.
- Fast refrigeration
- Low temperature
- Powerful frozen evaporator
- High efficiency.
- No reviews on Amazon
4.Costway IC Machine – Best Small Commercial Soft Ice Cream Machine
This machine features an automatic 2200W 20-28L/5.3-7.4 gallon per hour output. You can make hard and soft ice cream with it.
The LCD display shows all functions as they transpire.
This small machine is excellent for home use, but it wouldn’t be unnecessary in a bar, café, dessert shop, or fruit juice bar either. It can make 4 different shapes of ice cream.
This unit will enable you to serve different types of flavors.
Many ice cream machines only offer two flavors-vanilla and chocolate. This commercial soft serve machine is designed with 5 options and 2 modes.
The so-called 1-click cleaning function makes maintenance a breeze. Any time you decide to clean the ice cream machine, just pour water into the hopper and press the CLEAN button.
It only takes a few minutes. The machine is convenient to operate and one can modulate according to different tastes. With the LED display design, you always control the hardness, quantity, and temperature.
You have absolute control over the ingredients that go into your dessert. During the mixing, you can add chocolate chips, meringue, berries, nuts, or anything else. This 2*6 L capacity ice cream maker will meet any family’s daily ice cream consumption needs.
- Compact, will fit practically anywhere
- 5 options and 2 production modes
- Easy maintenance
- The ice cream comes out too fast
This 740W fried ice cream machine is perfect for cafes, bars, and dessert shops.
It has a bucket diameter of 7 inches and a 0.79 inch deep pan. The lowest temperature is -25 -35 ℃ (-13 -31 ℉). The machine weighs 126 pounds and measures 29 x 21 x 29 inches in size.
You can add anything you want to your ice cream if you choose this machine: milk, sugar, fresh fruit, fruit juice, soy milk, soft drinks, coke, coffee, even beer or liquor.
The excellent compressor provides strong cooling, greatly accelerates the cooling time, and improves work efficiency. You can make fried ice cream with this machine in less than a minute thanks to the low cooling speed.
The machine is always ready to operate and it is very easy to do so. Just plug it into a socket and turn on the refrigeration switch before stirring in your ingredients of choice, be they juice, cocoa, milk, etc. To stir them in, you use an ice slush shovel.
A lot of schools, malls, cold stores, theaters, restaurants, railway stations, stadiums, tourist establishments, residential quarters, and ice cream trucks use this machine. It can be set up almost anywhere – a rural market, the center of town, and more.
- Can be used anywhere
- High speed cooling
- No user manual for function/errors meaning, contact seller
This 1400 W ice cream machine can produce 4.3 to 5.28 gallons of hard ice cream per hour, making it equally suitable for commercial and home use.
The unit features an elegant liquid crystal operation panel with a new chip.
This makes it easier to operate and user-friendlier. The brand new LCD display system provides a convenient display of the time used and a clearer operation interface. The machine emits a tone to signal that the processed ice cream is ready.
The body is made of stainless steel. It is delicate yet sturdy and easy to clean. It features an injected feed port made of food grade high quality PVC, extending the life cycle considerably. The big frozen cylinder can makes 10 L of hard ice cream within half an hour and 20 L in less than one hour.
An O-shaped detent ring seals the system for the ingredients, keeping them from leaking out. The unit features automatic discharging. In other words, the ice cream will flow out of the outlet automatically once you remove the cover. Thanks to the double stirring spring, the stirrer blades fit with the stirrer well. Vibration and noise are low.
- Wide application
- Solid and robust design
- Informative display
- Only makes hard ice cream
7.Whynter-ICM 200-LS- Best Value For Money
This unit is very user-friendly. All you need to do is pour the ice cream mixture into the canister, put the lid on and switch the unit on.
An LCD screen shows the options for mixing, ice cream, and cooling.
The digital countdown begins at 60 minutes. Users can subtract or add to that default time. The Whynter’s solid internal 180 watt motor made 1.5 quarts of ice cream in less than half an hour during testing.
Whynter’s extended cooling function kicks in automatically when the timer hits zero and the unit keeps the ice cream chilled for half an hour. It is easy to wash the dasher and removable canister. Albeit somewhat costly, the excellent quality of the ice cream it makes renders it a worthwhile investment.
- Makes both hard and soft-serve ice cream
- Ice cream and desserts taste exactly like ice cream parlor
8.Lello 4080 Musso Lussino – Best Light Ice Cream Machine
Our final choice weighs just 38 pounds.
You screw the stainless dasher into place, pour the ice cream mixture, and set the timer to 40 minutes.
The unit won’t start until the timer is set. It produces only soft-serve ice cream. You’ll need to freeze it if you want it to be firm.
- Very light
- Makes professional-quality ice cream at home
- Has efficient motor and dasher
- Beautifully designed
- Dasher doesn’t reach bowl base
This is our final section, where we answer the most commonly asked questions.
Where do I buy a commercial soft serve ice cream machine?
The best places to buy one are eBay, Amazon, or sites like Craigslist.
How does a commercial ice cream maker machine work?
After the ice cream ingredients are mixed together, the machine freezes part of the water and whips air into the mix.
How much is a commercial ice cream machine?
As a rule of thumb, people pay from $8,300 to $10,500 for a new one-flavor soft serve machine or a new countertop machine.
The price of larger floor models, which offer more than one flavor, ranges from $19,000 to $21,000. You can expect to pay an average of $9,500 for a countertop hard ice cream server.
How do you clean a commercial ice cream machine?
The easiest way to clean the complex parts of a soft serve ice cream maker is by soaking them in lukewarm, soapy water.
Use a soft brush or sponge to get rid of all debris or food. Then, rinse the parts using cool water. Finally, dry them using a towel.
The Tech Behind It
When looking to buy a commercial ice cream maker, take the above-mentioned factors into account.
You need to know exactly how much space you have, what you are looking to sell, whether you want to buy used or new, what kind of technology you want to be included, and perhaps what vendor you want to buy from.
Finally, another great article you might be interested in is the best ice makers article.