A commercial ice cream machine is necessary for any business that wishes to serve delicious frozen treats. When choosing an ice cream machine, it is essential to consider factors such as capacity, power, and features. Capacity is a significant consideration, as you will want to choose a machine that can accommodate the needs of your business.
If you expect to have a high volume of customers, you will need a machine with a large capacity. Power is another critical consideration, as a more powerful machine can produce ice cream faster. Finally, consider the features offered by different machines.
Some machines come with simple controls, while others offer more advanced features such as automatic defrosting and self-cleaning. By taking the time to compare different machines, you can find the perfect one for your business.
This guide will discuss the different commercial ice cream machines and what to look for when choosing one for your business. We will also list today’s top commercial ice cream machines.
Our Top Picks
Best Overall: Kolice Commercial 3 Flavors Soft Serve Ice Cream Machine
Best Runner Up: Compact Commercial Countertop Soft Serve Ice Cream Machine
Best Hard Serve: Kolice Commercial ETL Certificate Hard Ice Cream Machine
Best Budget: VEVOR 2200W Commercial Soft Ice Cream Machine
Best Alternative: INTBUYING Hard Ice Cream Machine
Best Commercial Ice Cream Machine: Review of Our Top Picks
1. Kolice Commercial 3 Flavors Soft Serve Ice Cream Machine
This top-of-the-line machine is perfect for any business, large or small. With its three flavors and mixed capabilities, it’s sure to satisfy any customer’s cravings. The sleek countertop design takes up minimal space and looks great in any setting. Plus, it comes with an ETL certificate and US plug for your convenience.
What sets this ice cream machine apart is its production capacity. It can produce up to 21 to 27 quarts per hour, making it perfect for even the busiest businesses. And with its two 7-liter tanks and two 1.5-liter cylinders, you’ll always have plenty of ice cream.
- ETL certificate tabletop yogurt ice cream machine
- Three flavors of soft ice cream machine
- Stainless Steel
- 2*7L tanks
- 2*1.5L cylinder
- Automatic washing system
- Very durable
- It’s multifunctional
- Low energy consumption
- Easy to operate
- Fast cooling
- One-key auto production
This ETL-certified countertop unit is our top pick because it’s perfect for businesses and home use, with a production capacity of 21-27 quarts per hour. The two 7L tanks and two 1.5L cylinders make it easy to produce large quantities of mixed flavors, and the auto counting and washing features make it simple to operate. Best of all, the fast cooling system ensures your ice cream is always fresh and creamy.
2. Compact Commercial Countertop Soft Serve Ice Cream Machine
This compact commercial countertop soft serve ice cream machine is ideal for busy cafes or restaurants that want to offer their customers delicious soft-serve ice cream without taking up a lot of counter space. The machine is easy to operate and can make soft serve products in just 20 minutes, so you can have your customers satisfied and your business running smoothly.
The refrigerated hopper can store products in the machine overnight, so you’re always prepared for a busy day ahead. With its small footprint and durable construction, this soft serve machine is an excellent choice for any business looking to provide their customers with the best possible experience.
- Stainless steel
- Refrigerated hopper
- Capacity of around 7 quarts of mix
- Parts are dishwasher safe
- Doesn’t take up much space
- A bit costly
This remarkable machine can whip up mouthwatering soft serve in just 20 minutes, perfect for rush hour or those impromptu customers or events.
3. Kolice Commercial ETLCertificate Hard Ice Cream Machine
The Kolice Commercial ETL Certificate Hard Ice Cream Machine is a high-quality, durable machine that can handle commercial gelato production. This machine is built to last with its extra-strong door and 4.3″ touch control panel. The timer control and one-key that automatically run make it easy to produce perfect ice cream every time.
And if you need a little extra current protection, the current overload protection will keep your machine running smoothly. Best of all, the Kolice Commercial ETL Certificate Hard Ice Cream Machine comes with a full refrigerant already installed, so you can start using it once it gets delivered.
- 4.3″ touch control panel
- Timer control
- 14L cylinder
- ETL certificate
- Current overload protection
- Perfect for hard ice cream
- Filled with refrigerant before delivery
- Extra strong door
This machine has an extra-strong door, a 4.3″ touch control panel, timer control, and a one-key automatic running feature. The current overload protection and already filled-in full refrigerant before delivery make this hard ice cream machine a must-have for any restaurant.
4. VEVOR 2200W Commercial Soft Ice Cream Machine
The VEVOR Commercial Soft Ice Cream Machine can keep up with high demand. This machine is designed with double 1.6 Gal (6L) hoppers (both made of food-grade 304 stainless steel), and it can produce up to 5.3-7.4 Gal gallons (20-28 liters) of ice cream per hour.
With this 2,200-watt machine, you can give three different flavors to your consumers. You have two single flavors and one combination of the two flavors. Whether you’re looking to churn out classic flavors like vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry or get creative with more unique flavors, this machine can do it all. You can also add berries, chocolate chips, and nuts to the mix as it’s being mixed. The intelligent LCD panel control makes it easy to operate, even for those who aren’t experts.
- Stainless steel
- 2200W Powerful Compressor
- LCD panel control
- Cleaning procedure is automated
- Allows you to create four different soft ice cream designs
- Stainless steel is used for its critical components
- Cheaper than most machines
- Simple to use
- A bit noisy
This soft-serve ice cream machine has a stainless steel body and an air compressor, making the entire piece of equipment solid and long-lasting.
5. NTBUYING Hard Ice Cream Machine
The INTBUYING Hard Ice Cream Machine is a commercial ice cream machine that will help you churn out delicious hard ice cream. This 1400-watt machine can produce 10-20 liters of hard ice cream per hour, making it perfect for busy ice cream shops and cafes. And with its LCD panel, it’s easy to track your ice cream’s progress.
The INTBUYING Hard Ice Cream Machine is made of high-quality stainless steel and has a refrigeration system that ensures your ice cream stays at the perfect consistency. It also has a scoop holder and an integrated topping dispenser, so you can easily add your favorite toppings to your ice cream.
- LCD panel
- 1400-watt machine
- O-shaped design
- Easy to clean
- Simple to use
- Takes up a little more space
This machine is powerful, efficient, and easy to use. With its 1400-watt motor and 10-20 liter/hour production capacity, it can churn out large batches of ice cream quickly and easily.
What to Consider When Purchasing an Ice Cream Machine
When it comes to ice cream machines, there are a lot of options available to choose from. So, how can you decide which one is right for you? Here are some factors to consider when making your choice.
The majority of these products are intended for use in the United States. International outlets and voltages vary, so the machine may require an adapter or converter in any other destination.
And because not all commercial buildings have three-phase power, it’s critical to double-check the power supply to your location before purchasing an ice cream machine.
Converting from single-phase to three-phase power can be costly. However, using three-phase gear over time can be more energy-efficient, especially for larger ice cream companies.
Three-phase ice cream machines will need to be installed by a licensed electrician. Doing electrical repair yourself or hiring an unlicensed handyperson is extremely dangerous and can damage your equipment and result in a hefty fine.
Cleaning your commercial ice cream machine daily can take a long time. Some machines include an automatic wash cycle, so you should factor in the time saved in your cost calculations.
Find out if the manufacturer advises specific cleaning solutions, such as a degreaser, for cleaning the condenser coil.
Type of Ice Cream Machine
While the fat and air content of different types of ice cream vary, most are produced similarly. In most cases, an ice cream machine combines and freezes the components to make the final product.
If you plan to operate a gelato shop, you’ll need to invest in a commercial gelato machine. This is because traditional gelato is often created at a lower temperature than ice cream and has less air whipped into it.
While some regular ice cream makers can make soft-serve ice cream, investing in a specialized commercial soft serve ice cream machine is usually advisable if you plan to sell in large quantities.
Service and Maintenance
Your ice cream machine will most likely require maintenance, servicing, and routine cleaning. Because not all machine providers have a local network of specialist technicians available for maintenance and repair calls, you should try to locate one.
Before buying a machine, learn about the maintenance schedule and associated expenditures. Expensive maintenance and servicing may raise the cost of a lower-cost machine, but less costly maintenance on a higher-end machine may lower its long-term operational expenses.
Before purchasing an ice cream maker, it is critical to evaluate its capacity. This will assist you in determining how much ice cream you can produce at once. There are two simple approaches to assessing the capacity of these dessert-making devices.
One approach to gauge the maker’s capacity is to count the cups or pints it can contain. Another method is to learn how many servings an ice cream machine can hold. An ice cream maker can hold 2.5 gallons, 1.5 gallons, 1.25 gallons, 1.1 gallons, and so on. People looking for ice cream for their company can look at a larger capacity.
Electric motor-powered appliances make a lot of noise. Those sensitive to noisy equipment should read the reviews before making a purchase. Customers quickly mention how loud an ice cream machine is in their reviews to help potential buyers.
Many of today’s newest models have a sleek appearance and appealing features. The added features include an extra bowl, auto-timer, remain cold function, LED display, hardening function, and an efficient digital display. For the summer, there are various varieties of ice cream machines available. They have unique features that can be beneficial to you.
The ideal commercial ice cream machine will be a suitable size for your kitchen or floor and have the appropriate production capacity. Each machine functions differently and may incorporate additional components that take up space.
Another consideration is the machine’s location, as commercial ice cream machines come in air and water-cooled models. Water-cooled machines require water to operate, whereas air-cooled devices emit heat into the room and raise the temperature. On the other hand, water-cooled machines must be installed near a water supply, while air-cooled machines must be installed near a ventilation outlet.
Displaying and Storing
You’ll need to store or display your ice cream after it comes out of your commercial ice cream maker. Consider the trays you’ll be using. These should fit inside your kitchen fridge or any display refrigerators or counters you have in your retail location.
The same rules apply if you sell take-out tubs of store-bought ice cream. Making sure your containers stack nicely in your kitchen and have display refrigeration will help make the most of your space and keep your production output as high as possible.
System of Cooling
Another thing to consider is how the ice cream machine is chilled. The cooling type will impact the machine’s performance and may influence where you install it in your kitchen.
A vent system allows hot air to escape and colder air to enter air-cooled machinery. They function best in air-conditioned or naturally cooler areas, and you should avoid covering the machine’s vents on the side, front, or top.
Cool water circulates over the machine’s internal components in water-cooled machinery. It will, however, require a steady water supply and a drainage point.
Efficiency and Time
When selecting a commercial ice cream-making machine, consider how long it will take to produce your ice cream. The time it takes to make a batch is also an essential consideration. Ice cream is typically made on the spot by ice cream manufacturers. Before settling on a manufacturer, you should assess your needs.
If you own a specialty ice cream shop, you’ll want to train your kitchen crew and develop highly talented ice cream producers. In this scenario, obtaining an ice cream maker machine, whether manual or more complex, may not be too difficult for you.
If you’re selling ice cream as a side dish, you might want to go with automatic or more straightforward equipment.
How Does a Commercial Ice Cream Machine Operate?
Fresh ingredients or a powdered premix are used to make a liquid combination. The mixture is placed into the hopper and then into the freezing cylinder. A mixing arm is then used to churn the ice cream continually, and the mixture expands as it slowly freezes.
Flavorings may need to be added at the start or throughout the churning process, depending on the machine. The speed of the mixing arm on some machines can be adjusted. This allows you to choose how much air is whipped into your ice cream.
How Do you Clean a Commercial Ice Cream Machine?
If your machine lacks a self-cleaning feature, you’ll need to clean the interior ice cream bowl, cylinders, and churning arm after batches. Hot, soapy water is usually sufficient. Because each machine is slightly different, it’s critical to ensure appropriate installation and disassembly.
Occasionally, you may need to use a degreaser to clean the condenser coil. This could be part of your maintenance and servicing contract, so verify with your local technician or service representative before attempting to clean it yourself.
How Do I Set Up a Commercial Ice Cream Maker?
Smaller countertop machines may easily plug into a standard outlet and don’t require any particular electrical installation. Still, most machines are 208/240-volt single or triple-phase equipment that a licensed electrician must adequately install.
In many circumstances, the machine will require hardwiring into your building. Another factor to consider is that the warranty and your business insurance may be canceled if it is not installed by a professional.
What is the Difference Between a Soft-serve Ice Cream Machine and a Hard Ice Cream Machine?
Soft serve machines are more likely to use powder mixes than ice cream makers, which are meant to use fresh ingredients. In addition, hard ice cream must be churned at a much lower temperature than soft serve ice cream.
You’ll also need to invest in a commercial soft serve ice cream machine if you want to include a self-service element in your store. Self-serve ice cream producers are not common with hard ice cream machines.
What is the Water Consumption of a Commercial Ice Cream Machine?
This is determined by whether your commercial ice cream maker is air or water-cooled. Air-cooled machines do not need to be connected to a water supply. In that situation, it will just utilize the water required to clean it.
On the other hand, water-cooled equipment must be connected to a cold-water connection. They circulate cold water through the machine’s interior components to keep them cool. The water is emptied from the machine as it heats up. The amount of water your machine uses is determined by its production capacity, size, and usage time.
What Does Overrun Mean?
Overruns are a critical component in ice cream manufacturing and the decision-making process when deciding which unit to use. The amount of air put into the ice cream mixture during production is known as overrun and is usually expressed as a percentage.
The ice cream machine will need to produce enough overruns to make good ice cream, gelato, frozen yogurt, and other sweet treats. Various commercial ice cream makers will add different amounts of overrun depending on the type of frozen dessert you’re trying to make.
For example, if you’re making 1 gallon of soft-serve ice cream with a 30% overrun, the ice cream has been combined into liquid form for 30% of the time during production.
Top commercial ice cream machines are designed to handle the heavy-duty demands of a high-volume ice cream business. The best ice cream machines for commercial use can produce a large amount of high-quality ice cream in a short period. They also have features that make them easy to operate and clean.
Choosing a commercial ice cream machine is about finding the right balance of performance and price. There are several excellent machines out there, so take the time to do your research and find the one that best suits your needs.
Our favorite pick is the Kolice Commercial 3 Flavors Soft Serve Ice Cream Machine as it is durable and easy to operate. Read this review, talk to other businesses, and compare prices before making your final decision. With a little effort, you’re sure to find the perfect ice cream machine for your business.