1,785 of 1,823 people found the following review helpful
on July 17, 2012
I am in love with this item. If you've ever made banana whip or "mock ice cream" in a blender, you will probably love this too. A few key negative review points are as follows, and I'll address these with my experience:
1. Yonanas didn't taste like vanilla/soft serve ice cream. ~Well, it is not made of unicorns and rainbows, so logic says that if you put a banana in, and no other ingredients, what comes out will most likely taste like a banana. Maybe some day they will make a magic Yonanas machine and the universe will rejoice.
2. It is loud. ~Yup, it is. But so is a blender, food processor, stick blender, etc. The fact is, I did not go deaf or bleed from my ears in the 2 minutes it took me to make a container full of blueberry-banana Yonanas.
3. It doesn't rinse right off. ~Yeah, it does. I undid my machine right after finishing the whip and rinsed it in the sink. All of the fruit came right off. I did have to apply a little soap to a sponge and move my hand back and forth on the machine for a second or two to get all the strawberry seeds out of the teeth, but this was hardly traumatizing. The only thing I can think of with folks not having successful clean-up is that it is not rinsed right away.
4. It leaves a half serving in the machine. ~Yup, it does. I took my Yonanas apart to rinse it, and just used a spoon to scrape the little bit left in the machine into my bowl. This was also not traumatizing.
5. I had to call in reinforcements (probably bodybuilders) to help me push the bananas in and take the machine apart. ~Really? I'm a regular lady with little spider-monkey arms, and I did not have to call in big, strong people to help me push the bananas in or take the machine apart.
6. It takes a ton of bananas to make a serving. ~No, not really. My Yonanas came with a plastic tub to keep in the freezer. Just today, all by myself, with no bodybuilder friends, no bleeding from the ears, and no dishpan hands, I filled the tub using only 4 whole bananas and 2 cups of frozen blueberries. This seems reasonable to me.
I like bananas, I like banana whips, I like fruit, and I like Yonanas.
566 of 602 people found the following review helpful
on August 13, 2011
This machine makes wonderful banana based 'ice cream' effortlessly. The frozen ice cream dispenses directly into your serving bowl. You do not need to stop and clean out any containers. So when the line of little children forms up behind you, you can just keep going. Clean up is a breeze. Break down the processing parts and rinse in less than 2 minutes. No scrubbing. This machine is not as loud as the Vitamix which also makes wonderful things.
The 'ice cream' is soft formed and very creamy.
You start with one frozen banana. Add other frozen fruit such as berries, pineapple, oranges, in between each banana. Non frozen bananas do not work as my daughter found out.
I don't think this machine will ever be placed under the counter. My biggest challenge to my raw lifestyle has been my love affair with ice cream. That ended last night.
461 of 511 people found the following review helpful
on August 12, 2011
Make sure you are freezing the fruit really well - very important. And ripe, not green. My first try I did with bananas only. The texture was creamy and smooth and fantastic. The second try I added blueberries. Yum. The berries were not quite as smooth as the bananas but was still very good. Berries with lots of seeds do make a less smooth final product. You would need to puree and strain the fruit before freeing to avoid having that seedy texture in the final product.
If you are expecting not to be able to taste the bananas and have it taste like vanilla iceacream, you might be disappointed. But you can add things to it to minimize the banana flavor.
I have really liked my experience with this item so far.
Using the Yohnana is very easy. Cut fruit into manageable sized pieces and freeze. If your freezer is one that freezes things very hard, you may need to let frozen fruit set on counter a few minutes before using. Drop the frozen fruit into the chute and use the tamper to push it thru the blades. If you are feeling creative, use a blender to make a thick fruit smoothie and freeze on a tray. Break into pieces and push thru the Yohnana for more "gourmet" flavors.
The machine is made of sturdy plastic, has metal blades, and extremely easy to disassemble and clean with a quick rinse under the faucet.
Yes, the machine is extremely noisy. You will wake the household if you try to use this in the morning.
edit: December 2014
We now also have a champion juicer for making banana whips. We have since given this to my parents. For the curious, the Champion juicer makes banana whips that are fantastic, but the Yohnana is a very close second. If you only want banana whips, then the Yohnana is the less expensive option and works great. If you want to do all of the other things that a champion juicer will do, then go that route. Other juicers use a different blade design that does not whip air into the final product as well as the champion and the yohnana do. Both products produce a fantastic banana whip though.
211 of 232 people found the following review helpful
on June 11, 2012
No, it doesn't taste or feel "exactly" like soft serve ice cream but, yes, it is incredibly good and creamy. Fantastic, really. BUT you must follow the directions carefully--yet the directions are inconsistent and full of typos. SO here's what you have to do: The bananas must be ripe but not really overripe (slightly mushy is good for banana bread, not Yonanas). They should be "cheetah spotted" as they say, and the banana inside must still be white. Peel, break in half and freeze for 24 hours--don't try to get around this. Thaw on the counter for five minutes--no longer and no shorter. The directions say 5 minutes one page, 15-20 minutes on another page, and also recommend microwaving for a few seconds instead. Forget about it--just leave the bananas and any other frozen fruit on the counter for five minutes. Use slow, steady, even pressure when pushing down with the plunger thing. Too fast and you get ice chips and possibly burn out the motor. Not thawing the fruit is another way to burn out the motor. It really helps to put the serving bowl in the freezer for a half hour or so ahead of time to prevent premature melting. It's no good when it's melted. And, finally, don't even think about putting chocolate in this thing even though several recipes say to do so. Not unless you want to spend the next ten, grumpy minutes scraping it out of that cone shaped part with the blades. Some of the chocolate will get through in irregular pieces but not much. I will soon experiment with chocolate syrup or fudge sauce mixed in but never again with the actual chocolate. If you follow these tips exactly, it's very, very good. Try 2 bananas and 3/4 cup of blueberries. Awesome combo!
135 of 158 people found the following review helpful
on January 5, 2012
I am having a REALLY tough time comprehending the negative reviews I have read about this product! My family received this as a Christmas gift, and I am so grateful to our neighbors for giving it to us!
First off, there is no learning curve. Simply freeze bananas (and other fruit, if desired,) the night before. We let them thaw for 10 minutes on the counter, then went directly to ice cream textured perfection on the very first try. I'm serious; this is truly easy. Rarely have I encountered a product that actually does exactly what it is supposed to do so easily and immediately. The directions are simple and easy to follow. I am no body builder at 5'6', 130 lbs., and both me and my petite 18-year-old daughter were able to shove the frozen fruit through quite easily.
Yes, it is noisy, but you're not running it for very long. I am a truly noise sensitive person. I HATE noise and love quiet, am always turning down the volume on the tv, etc., and I find the noise level of Yonanas completely tolerable for a short period of time.
Another point-you cannot duplicate the creamy texture this product delivers with a food processor of blender. It cannot be done. This does not create a smoothie or shake.Yonanas really makes a creamy consistency very much like ice cream. Of course, if you do not like bananas at all, you will probably not like them from the Yonanas machine, either. We made our first batch with strawberries (delicious,) and are looking forward to trying out other fruit combinations.
Lastly, cleaning up could not be easier. It actually disassembles into 5 washable pieces (hand or dishwasher.) I can't understand how some reviewers found it difficult to clean. Ours rinsed clean in seconds. I did use hot water and soap, and washed it right away. Maybe that's key.
Added bonus- as another reviewer stated, no more throwing out brown bananas. My four-year-old daughter loves bananas, but doesn't always eat them before they go bad. Now when I see them getting brown, I throw them (peeled) into the freezer to add to my supply!
Overall, a fantastic product, easy to use, a breeze to clean AND reassemble. If you want to eat healthier, or just want to have a frozen treat ready at hand, give it a try! I imagine this would be great for a kid's party. Stock up on frozen fruit, let the kids pick their own recipe, and let the fun begin!
220 of 260 people found the following review helpful
on February 27, 2012
So far I've tried frozen bananas w/ frozen strawberries (a bit icy), frozen bananas with frozen pineapple (less icy), and frozen banana with frozen vanilla pudding - DING, DING, DING - we have a winner! This combo made a smooth, truly soft-serve style dessert that my toddler kept wanting to steal bites of. It was like a banana cream soft serve. I just made instant pudding using 1% milk, froze in an ice cube tray, and threw in about 4-5 frozen cubes with 1.5 frozen bananas. Made about 2 adult-sized servings. So yummy! Next going to crumble graham cracker crumbs on top for the true banana cream pie experience. I'm excited to try butterscotch, pistachio, and chocolate frozen puddings, too! (PS - you don't need the deluxe model Yonanas- the $50 model is all you need for great desserts...)
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on November 18, 2012
This may be my favorite Amazon purchase ever. Once I figured out how to take apart the pieces that needed to be cleaned.....I am able to make delicious, healthy desserts easily. I'm not even a huge fan of bananas, but the bananas make a great, creamy base for the final product. It is a delicious, easy way to get fruit into your diet. Ice cream is my weakness and I wanted something to quell those cravings. This is it. I do recommend immediately cleaning the machine after use. And when freezing the bananas, make sure to peel them first. Some commenters have mentioned it is loud but I didn't find it bad at all.
However, do not buy the recommended $17.00 "dessert book". It is a flimsy paperback with few new recipes and not at all worth the money.
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on July 21, 2012
I found this after googling "paleo ice cream" and bought it right away. It arrived, and I had already peeled frozen bananas waiting in the freezer. It came already assembled, and the only thing I had to do was plug it in. I read the instructions, and thawed my bananas for fifteen minutes. It does say in one area of the booklet to thaw for five minutes, but in a different area it states 15. Go for the 15. Five minutes would have resulted in ice chips, I feel. I dropped one banana in, and then a handful of chocolate chips, and then pushed another banana in, and out came amazing soft serve banana-chocolate chip ice cream, with no weird fillers, no weird chemicals, and no weird fake colors. I was shocked. You see these things on tv and don't actually expect them to work as described, but this one made ice cream like a champ. For what it's worth, the booklet that comes with the machine suggests over and over to use "cheetah spotted bananas" because they're sweeter, but I prefer a stronger banana flavor and less sweetness, so I was perfectly happy using fresh bananas. They don't affect the actually yonana consistency.
Some notes. I had no issues with leaking, but I did make sure the leak stopping gasket was installed correctly, per instruction booklet. It wasn't hard. I had no issues with clean up. While your ice cream is sitting on the counter doing its thing, it takes a literal sixty seconds to pop the Yonana maker apart and rinse clean. For people who say a lot of yonana is left in the machine, I would concur, however, I took a spoon and easily scooped out the ice cream left in the machine and put it into my bowl. It was still the proper yonana consistency and taste. Just don't lick the blades with your tongue to get ALL the yonana out and you'll be okay. Some people complained it takes two bananas to make one serving, which is true, however, considering two bananas is only about 250 calories, that's not a bad deal I figured. If for some reason 250 calories of plain fruit isn't in your diet plan, you can freeze half. I tried it, and it makes ice cream that is scoopable, like a pint you would buy from the store.
I did not find the machine unbearably noisy. It took me longer to decide how many chocolate chips to put into the machine then it actually took the machine to make the ice cream. The noise is no louder than a blender and is on for far less time. One last thing- when the yonana is coming out of the machine I found that far less is left in the machine if the bowl is shorter and flatter and turned as the yonana comes out. However, once you're done plunging it really is not a big deal to pop the blade housing off the machine and scoop out the "still inside the machine" yonana, in the event your bowl turning skills are lacking (as mine for sure were).
I would recommend Yonanas to all my friends. They're always asking me to bring it over so they can push fruit and chocolate or peanut butter through. For the record, I do find that a small food processor and a blender make almost the same consistency, but not quite. We tried with a food processor and the blades are just too big to make a nice soft serve consistency. The Yoanana's blade are very tiny. With the blender it took forever having to shove the fruit back down into the blades. If you're paleo, or just don't want to eat ice cream with crazy amounts of sugar or weird stuff inside, buy this thing. Follow the instructions, mildly thaw your frozen fruit, and enjoy.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on May 2, 2014
So I read the reviews before buying one and was a bit skeptical. I looked into using my juicer, my ninja blender, and finally my food processor. Here is what I learned about the equipment...
1) My juicer is not intended to break down frozen fruit and could potentially void the warranty. The instructions also specifically state that using the juicer any other way than for juicing fresh produce could damage the machine. Considering how much I spent on the juicer, there is NO way I am going to compromise my juicer. So I decided not to risk it.
2) My ninja blender isn't any quieter than the Yonanas. (Some people complained about the noise). The ninja has somewhat of a difficult time breaking down frozen products. I also read that too many frozen items could break down the plastic walls of the Ninja unless your making smoothies with other liquids/ soft material (milk, yogurt, etc.) which give the walls some cushion. I decided to avoid breaking my Ninja as well. It makes amazing frozen drinks and smoothies.
3) My food processor was a pretty good choice. I attempted to make "Yonana" Ice cream in it at one time and wasn't completely disappointed. It is an ok choice. However, using the Yonanas I like the consistency it creates. With bananas it does indeed create a soft serve type consistency.
So that sums up the equipment.
I want to address some of the issues that I encountered that other reviewers addressed.
1) "It tastes like frozen fruit mashed up" - Not to call you out, but that is kind of the point. If you are looking for real soft serve Ice cream and not the healthy alternative, this is definitely not your product. My family and I love ice cream and would prefer the sugary, fattening, creamy soft serve. However, it is not good for us and we enjoy this alternative.
2) "The ingredients get trapped and don't come out" - This doesn't bother me so much. I mean... any product you use... blender, food processor, etc. doesn't even dispense it. You would have to scrape it out of whatever you use. Not a big deal. If you really want everything done for you, go to an ice cream shop.
3) "The ingredients begin to melt before I finish processing all the fruit." - This is very true. But I have found a great fix for this. I freeze a freezer safe bowl (Pyrex) and it helps keep it cold as I process the fruit. If someone already wrote this - great minds think a like. I am too lazy to read all the reviews ;)
4) "It's too noisy"- No offense but do you think a blender or food processor is going to be quieter? I mean it's frozen fruit for crying out loud. Now I haven't tried every product out there and maybe there is a blender or processor that meets your noise level needs. If that's the case, then go for it.
In my opinion, the Yonanas isn't as simple as they make it out to be. However, it is easy to adapt to and much cheaper than a real soft serve machine for home ($100+ and the special mixes). Not to mention it is so much healthier. My family enjoys it. But everyone has their own opinion.
333 of 426 people found the following review helpful
on May 16, 2012
I was so excited for this product to arrive. I thought, "frozen fruit would be such a healthy alternative to ice cream". Not that I had super unreasonable expectations. After all, you can't turn a banana into a full fat ice cream sundae. What I was expecting was something more than just puréed frozen fruit. This product touts that the end result is creamy. I did not find that the result was creamy at all. No matter which kind of fruit was used. The "purée" isn't even reduced enough to be a creamy option! I have learned you cannot make fruit "creamy" unless there is some kind of base(i.e. yogurt or pudding,etc) in it to make it "creamy". I did try all the aforementioned tricks in the amazon reviews and in the booklet as well to see if that changed my opinion and nothing worked. I even made my health nut fiance try it and he said, "it's frozen smashed banana" *cue odd crinkle brow face*. So that is essentially a big "whoop de doo!" from the peanut gallery.
Also, while I do love bananas, when they are mushed up they become gummy and sticky. I used fully ripe and frozen bananas as well. So I thought this product would help kind of reduce that and it didn't. I did try other frozen fruit as well such as strawberries and peaches. Strawberries came out like a granita/sorbet type dessert. I imagine this is because of the higher water content in a berry vs. a fruit such as the banana. Berries also have seeds in them so every time you bite you get a seed in your treat which is less pleasing to me but others probably wouldn't mind. I do think this would be a good option if you were making frozen fruit baby food though or for a teething baby, but then again, you could purchase a product for the same price or even a little more that you could have more options with.
The cleaning and waste is probably one of the most irritating parts to it. Basically you have to have a lot of fruit because if you just put in one banana it disappears in the blade system inside the product unless you have another one to push it out. So basically it's a 2-for-1 system unless you want to take it apart to get the excess fruit in the blades with a spoon. Maybe I'm just a wimp, but I also thought that the spout part was kind of hard to twist off and lock in as well. The plunger system also wasn't really effective either. I used the right amount of pressure and the machine stopped from time to time. I know I wasn't using so much pressure that it completely stopped like some may have experienced. I also felt like while the cone/blade part is gooey with all the excess fruit you could slip and cut yourself on the blades. In my opinion, you have to be careful when taking it apart and washing/rinsing. The whole "You can just rinse it off and bam! You're done!" thing isn't true either. Fruit is sticky because of the fructose in it and it will not come off with just rinsing. I used dish soap because I don't have the luxury of a dishwasher and didn't want anything leftover or stuck on the blades. I did not find the product unbearably loud like some have said. I felt it was actually a little less loud than a blender with ice chopping in it.
At the end of the day, I just felt that this product is not worth the money considering you could probably do the same thing in a higher end food processor (without liquid) which would have more uses. This is a one trick pony. Sure you can puree various frozen fruits, frozen yogurt cubes, and frozen pudding but that's about it! I sent it back for a refund.