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on May 6, 2012
After reading scary reviews of some of the costly self-refrigerating ice cream makers, I bought one of the few that seemed to prove reliable. It lasted 20 minutes before the compressor stopped working. So, I returned it and bought a Cuisinart - the "ICE-21" model, which is the updated version of one they've been making for years. It's been turning out batch after batch of excellent ice cream since the day it arrived. Yes, you have to wash, dry and re-freeze the bowl between batches (or buy a second bowl), and, yes, it's high-grade plastic, and it is indeed made in China. But it works, consistently and well. I've tried a couple of the (few) recipes in the unit's accompanying booklet, as well as some from both the Jeni's book and Perfect Scoop book. All have turned out beautifully - producing products far superior to even the "upscale" premium ice creams available in the supermarket. The only negative involves resisting the urge to eat the "soft" ice cream when the machine is done, rather than packing a container and putting it into the freezer to harden further. Let's just say not all the product ends up in the freezer.............!

I long ago came to the conclusion that junk can be made anywhere. So can quality. It's up to the manufacturers to demand that their standards be met. In this case, Cuisinart, like Apple, seems to insist that the products bearing their name maintain a level of quality that reflects well on their reputation, regardless of where the products are made. Wise choice.
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I love ice cream. When I got married we were given an ice cream maker that used rock salt and ice to freeze the ice cream.

Unfortunately over time it quit working so we needed a replacement. I was attending a cooking class a couple years ago and this was the ice cream maker that was used in that class. I wanted to try out the recipes we were given so I purchased one of these machines.

I love that there is no ice or rock salt needed. It freezes fast and although this machine is "loud" it is much quieter than a traditional ice cream maker.

The downside is that the capacity in this machine is limited. It makes just enough ice cream to give each member of my large family a small serving. This would be ideal for smaller families.

I do love and make traditional ice cream recipes but we are trying to eat more healthy. Here is our favorite vegan "healthy" ice cream recipe that all 5 of my kids love.

Strawberry Ice Cream (
1 cup raw Cashews
1 cup pitted dates
2 cups water + more water if needed
1/2 cup white or pinto beans
1 tsp vanilla
12+ Large Frozen Strawberries

Soak nuts and dates in 2 cups of water for 4 hours or more to ease blending. Blend nuts, dates, beans, water & vanilla in high powered blender until smooth. Add more water if needed to thin and dilute to desired richness. Add frozen strawberries and more water if needed, blend until smooth. Freeze in an ice cream freezer.

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on January 8, 2011
In got this ice cream maker for christmas. It works great. The ice cream is very easy to make. I'm 11 and I make the ice cream all by myself. I freeze the bowl 6-9 hours and I get creamy and delicious ice cream. Now it's my job to make ice cream for the family every week. My dad loves the chocolate. If you had a contest between store brand ice cream and this kind, this kind would win by a landslide.
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on February 19, 2013
Received this as a gift for Christmas. Read the reviews on the ICE-20 and was hesitant to ask for this, as I was afraid the same issues would be present. This fear was not unfounded, as I was able to make a first batch - a delicious egg nog recipe - and then I could not get another batch to work after this time, no matter how cold I got my freezer, the bowl or the ingredients prior to adding to the bowl. Was not able to return the item as I didn't make my second batch until after the Amazon Return Window had passed. It is a solid built machine (motor runs fine) and has good styling (I got the yellow model), however, there is something off with the bowl being able to freeze the mixture.

Surprised that a Cuisinart would stop working so quickly (I have several other appliances from Cuisinart that I've had for 10+ years!), so I'd say that my overall review is "Buyer beware", as this appliance may or may not work.

2/25/12 Update:
Since I was outside my Amazon return window, I called Cuisinart directly to see what I could do. The bowl has a 1 year parts warrant, so they sent a replacement (albeit in white, as the lemon color was not available in stock for replacement bowls) swiftly and I've already made some new batches! Kudos to Cuisinart for standing behind their products!!
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on December 27, 2010
This is so easy and fun to use...never going to eat store bought ice cream again! Have had this for less than two weeks and have made ice cream 5 times already. First time was just an experiment using things I happened to have in the fridge which did not even include regular dairy, I only had coconut milk, and I ended up with a strawberry sorbet kind of concoction that was darned good. Since then I have followed recipes for coconut pineapple custard, rum raisin, chocolate mint and vanilla custard. Each one has been outstanding and far exceeds similar flavors I have tasted in store bought, not to mention no more high-fructose corn syrup and artificial flavors and colorings. It is so easy to use and 4 out of the five times the ice cream was done in under 10 minutes. The exception was the rum raisin, the alcohol content might have slowed the freezing process down, but it still set-up in less than 20 minutes. I live in South Florida and have no problem getting the insulated bowl to freeze solid. I always make sure my base is well chilled too. When it is first done it freezes to a texture a little bit harder than soft serve frozen custard, which is delicious, but after it has been stored in the freezer it becomes more of a traditional hard ice cream texture.
I have wanted an ice cream maker for a while as I am planning on going dairy free in the near future and the coconut milk and almond milk ice creams are soooo expensive I though making my own would be the best way to go. After much research I had debated between this and the big soft-serve dispensing, mix-in machine also made by Cuisinart but decided on this one because simpler is usually this color aqua is so fun. I am very pleased with this of the best self-bought birthday presents I ever made. I think some kind of frozen drink might be my next if I can only decide which flavor to try...mudslide, creamsicle, frosty pina colada...
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on December 3, 2010
This ice cream maker is wonderful. Its the best ice cream I have had in a long time. No ice or salt needed, just freeze the bowl overnight and the next day you have soft serve in 30 minutes or less. We have tried a couple of the recipes that were in the book that came with the ice cream maker. Both were far superior to store bought ice cream and were easier than I would expect. Especially the custard version. Its a huge difference if you chill your mix overnight before churning. We usually put bowl in the freezer and the mix in the fridge the night before so both are ready to go the next day. Everyone so far has been impressed with the final result and with the holidays I see this being a staple for entertaining guests.
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on August 27, 2011
This ice cream maker is amazing! If your new to making ice cream then I would get this ice cream maker. It's so easy to use and the results of the ice cream that come out are fantastic. Another plus if you like to eat lots of ice cream then you'll save money making your ice cream at home. The process of being able to watch your own ice cream being made is neat too. Tonight I made Vegan Salted Caramel Pretzel Ice Cream and WOW! The vegan ice cream's at the store have nothing on this. (Pretty sure if your not a vegan though that dairy ice cream's at the store will have nothing on what you can make.) The taste of the ice cream is much more flavorful,fresher, and creamier. As far as being easy to use you just put the bowl in your freezer to freeze. (I left mine in for 24 hours before making my ice cream. Make sure the liquid you hear in the bowl is frozen before you use the bowl.) Afterwards put your machine together, turn the machine on, and start adding in your ice cream mixture. 20 minutes later you have delicious ice cream. Now the ice cream comes out like soft serve so if you want it more firm just take it out of the machine put into a freezer safe container and freeze for 2 hours before serving.

A few recomendations though before you get started. Make sure you don't put ingredients that are hot, warm, or room tempature into the machine. Try to chill your ice cream mixture beforehand like 3 hours or overnight. The ice cream comes out creamier this way. The colder the better. Today I chilled my ice cream mixture 8 hours before using. Makes sure to use PURE EXTRACTS when using those. The artifical ones seem to mess up the freezing ability/texture with ice creams. Make sure to add nuts,chocolate chips,sprinkles,cookies and so on the last 5 minutes of the process. If you use alcohol also add that at the last 5 minutes. It too will affect the process of the ice cream. If you try to make your ice creams less fattening by using products with less fat your results aren't going to be as creamy and will have a different texture. For example I use unsweetened almond milk and canned coconut milk which makes it very smooth and creamy. If I use rice milk instead or other lower fat nondairy milks the result are completely different. This ice cream maker is a good price, produces wonderful ice cream, easy to use, saves money and is FUN!
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on May 29, 2013
This is my first Ice Cream Maker, I have made several batches of ice cream and have not had a problem with the maker or the ice cream. To be totally honest, the ice cream is just as good as, or better than, the ice cream I get at Baskin Robbins up the road. I have also make sorbet, which is also great.

Now, that being said, here are some tips for first-time ice cream makers out there who have no idea what is involved but are interested in buying this:

* Tip #1 - There is a bunch of prep to be done before you make your ice cream!

I suppose I was naive, but I thought you just froze the bowl, chunked in some milk and sugar and stuff and then let this thing run for 20 minutes, and pow! Ice Cream. That is NOT the case. Not only will you have to buy the correct ingredients to make your ice cream, many of the recipes call for various amounts of prep. For example, my girlfriend likes Cheesecake ice cream. I had to go and buy three kinds of cheese, strawberries (optional), and for another kind of ice cream I picked up pecans, heavy cream, whole milk, and unsalted butter.

When I got home, I had to mix the three cheeses, sugar, whole milk, etc into a bowl and let it chill for at least two hours, but overnight is recommended.

To me, this was not a big deal at all, but was an eye-opener because I thought I could just throw everything in the bowl and ice cream would magically appear. To make Butter Pecan, I also had to roast the pecans in butter for several minutes and then let them chill in the fridge.

* Tip #2 - The Ice Cream will not look like Ice Cream right away!

Another surprise, which I suppose I should have been aware of ... when your first batch of ice cream is done, it will appear that it's not. It will be really soft and creamy. Don't Panic! Put it in a bowl with a lid and let it sit in your freezer overnight and it will look and have the same "hard" texture as store bought ice cream. My batch of Cheesecake Ice Cream looked like a pale pudding until I put it in the freezer to harden up a bit.

Those are the only two items I can think of that surprised me. I hope it helps someone out there. This device is absolutely great and it really is a lot of fun to make ice cream with friends and family.
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VINE VOICEon September 16, 2013
This is my first ice cream maker. I have used it to make:
- Strawberry ice cream
- Pineapple sherbet
- Pumpkin ice cream

This machine can me great ice cream and sherbet. More fat-content (heavy cream, instead of skim milk) will bring creamier results. But to bring the calories down, I combine 1.25 cups of half-and-half and 1 cup of skim milk.

Yes, it can make loud noise too! See the video. I place the machine in the basement so it won't bother me and the neighbor.
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on December 28, 2010
I purchased this ice cream maker for my daughter (who is 9) for Christmas. We made our first ice cream last night and OMG it was wonderful !!! It was just as good or even better than any we have ever had ! We had no problem with it making the ice cream or with the ice cream getting firm. We let the mix in the fridge for about 2 hours, poured it in the machine, turned it on, and in 20 minutes we had ice cream !!! Could not be easier !! I washed up the bowl with warm soapy water and put it back in the freezer for another batch tonight !! We are very pleased with machine and are sooooooooooo happy we bought it !!!
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