Best Ice Cream Maker

So, you’re looking to make some ice cream? Great idea! Making your own ice cream can be a great choice, whether you’re looking to be more health conscious or you’re just looking for a fun activity to do with the kids.

Ice cream has been the staple dessert within US households for over a century, with the majority of Americans (90% or more!) having some ice cream in their freezer.

And if you’re interested in getting yourself a decent ice cream maker, then you’re in the right place. Although the majority of my experience is with larger commercial ice cream machines, I do know what it takes to make a good ice cream maker, too. Here, I’ll impart some of my many years of wisdom onto you, so that you can get yourself an product at the most affordable possible price.

Best Ice Cream Maker

Cuisinart ICE-21-R

Cuisinart ICE-21 1.5 Quart Frozen Yogurt-Ice Cream Maker (White)
  • New mixing paddle makes frozen desserts in 20 minutes or less
  • Large capacity makes up to 1-1/2-quarts
  • Double insulated freezer bowl eliminates the need for ice

If you are looking for the best maker available at a pretty reasonable price, then this is probably the best that you’re going to find.

For the majority of people, you don’t need a massive ice cream maker for your needs. That’s why I’d advise going for this one – it makes enough for a full family (though you won’t have much left over). Beware though that some recipes you’ll find online may be a little bit too big for this , so you might have to cut down on the amount of ingredients that you’re using.

If you prefer to have a totally removable bowl, then this is an ideal option. You do need to bare in mind two things however. Firstly, you’ll need to leave the bowl in the freezer the night before to prepare it. And secondly, this makes it much easier for washing up. I like ice cream makers without the removable bowl too, but this makes it easy to remove the bowl and wash it quickly and easily.

Make sure that you reduce the amount of ingredients that you’re using in this if you’re following recipes you’ve found online. A lot of the recipes you find online will be for two quart makers, which is a little bit too much for the size of this one.

Pros

 Cheap Price – There aren’t many better options available at the same price as this one – it’s definitely giving you good bang for your buck.

 Easy to Use – If you’re like me, you want to use this at your home with your kids. So, it’s important that kids can use it too! It’s really to use this one, even for young kids (though you should supervise them to make sure they don’t make a mess!).

 Quick at making ice cream – Compared to some other machines where you are waiting ages for your ice cream to be done, this works within a short period of ice. Great if you want ice cream fast!

Cons

 Not great for the dishwasher – Although it’s labelled as dishwasher safe, this isn’t actually ideal for dishwasher use due to the material it’s made from. It’s much better to hand wash this, like it is for the majority of stuff in your kitchen anyways.

 Must Freeze Beforehand – Like the majority of ice cream makers, you’ll have to pre freeze the bowl of this one in advance of using it. This can be a bit annoying if you want to make impromptu ice cream on the spot.

 The plastic casing is cheap – Okay, we’re not paying out big bucks for this. But, the plastic could be a bit better quality than it currently is.

Overall Verdict

This is my choice for the best ice cream maker for the majority of families – you’ll get just about the perfect amount of ice cream for a family of four. My top pick for easy ice cream at a pretty affordable price, too.

Hamilton Beach Automatic

Hamilton Beach 68330N Automatic Ice Cream Maker, 4 quart, White
  • Delicious versatility - make ice cream, frozen yogurt, custard, sorbet, gelato and sherbet all with one ice cream machine
  • Fully automatic - no stirring needed. Just add ingredients, ice & rock salt - it does all the work, then stops when ready
  • Over 20 recipes included - try the recipes inside or create your own unique taste by mixing in candy, cookies, or fresh fruit

The Hamilton Beach Automatic is a better choice for those looking to make a large quantity of ice cream in a short period of time. In about half an hour, you can have around 4 quarts of ice cream – which means this is faster than the majority of it’s competitors.

If you like to make healthier ice cream, then it can be a wise decision to opt for a large automatic ice cream machine like this one. It works well with both regular ingredients and ketogenic ingredients, so if you’re trying to cut carbs out of your diet then making your own ice cream can be a great way to still enjoy a dessert.

Some people like fancy buttons and flashing lights on their kitchen appliances. If like me, you like simplicity, then you’ll appreciate this automatic ice cream maker. There’s no fancy buttons that I don’t understand. No flashing lights telling me things I don’t need to know. Just a simple machine, to make simple ice cream.

From a negative perspective, don’t expect this to last you forever. It’s made from relatively inexpensive aluminium, so it’s not going to have the shelf life of one that costs you hundreds of dollars. But for it’s price, it’s one of the best options around.

Pros

 Works quickly – This ice cream maker only takes about half an hour to make you some delicious ice cream. If you have young kids, you’ll appreciate the need for speed!

 4 quarts is more than enough – One thing that I like to do it make ice cream on a weekend, and save it for the whole week. This is perfect if you want to make some ice cream and freeze it for dessert during the weekdays.

 Relatively cheap for it’s size – Usually larger ice cream makers run at a higher price than their competitors, but this isn’t the case with this Hamilton Beach one.

Cons

 No slide latch – Unfortunately with this one, there’s no sliding latch to open it up whilst it’s mixing. This makes it a bit annoying if you wanted to make a nut ice cream, as you’ll have to add it after and stir it in yourself.

 Takes up a ton of room – I know it sounds kind of silly, but this is a beast of a machine. If you only want an ice cream maker to make ice cream occasionally, you’ll like want to opt for something else that you can fit more easily into your kitchen.

 Works best with plain flavours – As with most ice cream makers, this one works best with plain flavors like vanilla and strawberry.

Overall Verdict

If you’re feeding the whole family, then it can make sense to opt for a large machine like this one. For it’s price, it’s arguably one of the top ice cream makers for the money.

Cuisinart ICE-30R

Cuisinart ICE-30R Pure Indulgence Frozen Yogurt Sorbet & Ice Cream Maker, 2 quart, Brushed Metal/Red
  • Double insulated freezer bowl holds up to 2 quarts of frozen dessert
  • Brushed metal housing with embossed logo
  • Heavy-duty motor makes frozen desserts or drinks in as little as 25 minutes

The ICE-30R is the daddy of the Cuisinart family and is one of their better options if you’re looking for something larger than the ICE-21. It makes 2 quarts of ice cream, which is enough for the family (and you’ll probably have a little extra left over, too).

One of the better things about this one if you compare it to similar machines is that it can make ice cream in as little as 20 minutes. With some machines, you’ll have to wait hours for your ice cream to be ready – fortunately, that isn’t the case here.

Another good thing that you may prefer about this ice cream maker is that it has a relatively large mix in spout. This is perfect for those looking to make high quality ice cream and add in some of their favorite ingredients – it can very boring sticking to plain old vanilla.

If you prefer a heavy duty product – one that you’ll use every week – as opposed to a smaller one that you just use for the odd occasion, then this may be the perfect option for you.

Pros

 If you want to make luxury ice cream – If you’re not interested in sticking to just vanilla and you want to try other recipes, this is a good option for you. Generally, if you want to make flavors like you see in the stores – think Ben & Jerry’s – then ultimately this type of ice cream maker is a better choice. Sure, it might run you a few extra bucks but it’s necessary if you to make premium flavors.

 Latch to add goodies – Unlike the Hamilton Beach Automatic, this has a latch to add in your favorite extras. Pro tip – pecans make an awesome addition to most flavors!

 Works well with B&J – The Ben and Jerry’s Recipe Book is one of the most popular ice cream recipe books around, and it works exceptionally well with this ice cream maker.

Cons

 Not quite as big as it states – Whilst it’s advertised as a 2 quart ice cream maker, it’s actually slightly below that in size.

 Noisiest machine ever – Okay, so maybe it’s not the noisiest machine in the world, but it’s definitely up there in my opinion.

 Low quality materials – This one is made with relatively low quality materials, so you might notice some wear and tear after several uses. 

Overall Verdict

Not a bargain like the first two I mentioned, but still a good choice if you need something a bit bigger.

Nostalgia Retro

Sale
Nostalgia ICMP400WD Electric Wood Bucket Ice Cream Maker, 4-Quart
  • This Unit makes 4-quarts of delicious ice cream, frozen yogurt or gelato
  • Works with Nostalgia ice cream kits
  • Plastic bucket that wipes away messes with ease

The Nostalgia is a retro option for anyone who wants something stylish that will fit into their kitchen easily. It’s been around for a good few years now, and has stood the test of time as one of the top ice cream makers on the market.

If you’re often having parties with friends, then this Nostalgia Retro can be the focal point of your party. It looks great, and can be fun for kids to dish out their own ice cream.

nostalgia-ice-cream-maker-review-864x623
There are a few different variations of the Nostalgia – this is the darker wood one, whereas there is lighter looking one, too.

If you want to make copious amounts of ice cream, then it’s essential that you have the right tools for the job. It’s a pretty quiet ice cream maker, which makes a difference if you compare it to the more expensive options that are available.

Along with this, it’s pretty sturdy. Often with the cheaper options available, you’ll find that they’re going to break easily after a few uses. But, this isn’t really the case with the Nostalgia. Due to it’s robust build, you’re probably going to have this in your cupboards for a long while to come.

Pros

 Easy mix latch – Not only is the mixing latch on this easy to use, but it’s also see-through (they should make them all see through!). This means that you can see how mixed your added ingredients are with ease. 

 Very easy to clean – Unlike some ice cream makers, this one is very easy to clean. If there’s one thing I hate, it’s cleaning my kitchenware, but you don’t have to worry about this with this.

 Wooden Outside, plastic inside – For appearance, the outside of the ice cream maker is made of wood. This gives it a great retro feel. But on the inside, it’s made from the same old plastic you’d find in any similar maker, which makes it perfect for easy clean ups.

Cons

 Works best with Nostalgia mixes – Some people may see this as a positive, but for me it’s a drawback. I like a maker that works well with all different recipes and mixes, but this one works best with Nostalgia ice cream mixes, which means you’re really stuck to one brand.

 Not the best quality – This isn’t a top of the range ice cream maker, so you may want to look elsewhere if you want the tip top brands.

 The paddle is flimsy – The paddle is one of the most essential parts of any ice cream maker. Unfortunately, the paddle that comes with the Nostalgia is pretty flimsy so you have to be careful when using it.

Overall Verdict

More of an attraction than a great ice cream maker, it still does the job. Overall, it’s a pretty ideal gift for anyone looking something run of the mill.

Cuisinart ICE-100

Cuisinart ICE-100 Compressor Ice Cream and Gelato Maker, Silver, 1-1/2-Quart
  • Fully automatic with a commercial quality compressor. 1-1/2-quart ice cream bowl capacity
  • LWH: 16.73 x 12.00 x 9.33,UC LWH: 13.75 x 17.50 x 13.50,MC LWH: 18.00 x 14.25 x 14.25 inches . Weight : 32lbs
  • 2 paddles - a gelato paddle for authentic gelato and an ice cream paddle for creamy ice cream

If you’d like to get an ice cream maker with a built in compressor, then the ICE-100 may be a better option for you than the aforementioned options. It’s significantly more expensive, but it’s creates ice cream much easier than a cheaper option.

An ice cream maker with a compressor is also much likely to last you a lot longer due to the high quality of materials that are used to make it.

If you want to look at a more in depth review, check out this video;

Pros

 Instant ice cream – When you up the budget of your ice cream maker, you forego the necessity to pre freeze the bowl the day before. This means that you don’t need to worry about waiting, and you can make ice cream instantly.

 Quieter than others – Often, these kinds of machines can be noisy and kind of annoying. That isn’t the case with the ICE-100, which you’ll barely notice in comparison to your other kitchen appliances.

 Makes good quality ice cream – At the end ofthe day, all that we want from our machine is for it to make top quality ice cream – which this one does with ease.

Cons

 More effort to clean – I must admit, one thing that I prefer about smaller and cheaper ice cream makers is that you only need to wash to removable bowl. Sure, they might not be optimal, but you don’t have to worry about clean up. This one can be awkward to clean if you’re used to another one. Like, I’m pretty lazy – you’ll have to occasionally clean the gears and insides of this one if you regularly use it.

 Getting the ice cream out – Whilst it does come with two paddles, it can be a little difficult to actually get ice cream out!

 Does take a bit longer – After the pre freeze, other ice cream makers will take about 30 mins to make the ice cream. This one may take up to 50 minutes or an hour at a push.

Whynter ICM-200LS

Whynter ICM-200LS Stainless Steel Ice Cream Maker, 2.1-Quart, Silver
  • Stainless steel housing , Voltage: 110/120V 60Hz , Power: 180 watts.
  • Self-contained frozen dessert maker that does not require pre-freezing
  • BPA-free aluminum removable mixing bowl and churn blade for easy storage and effortless cleaning

A direct competitor to the ICE-100, the Whynter is a good option if you want to avoid the Cuisinart brand.

In reality, the Whynter is far better than your regular option. The reasons? Well, it’s a top of the range appliance for a few. Primarily, the Whynter competely eliminates the need to pre freeze anything, which can be super annoying if you only have a cheaper ice cream maker.

Another thing that I particularly like about the Whynter is that it you have the option to leave your ice cream for 30 minutes after it’s finished making it. That means that you set the Whynter to start churning, then you can serve your dinner and eat it without having to worry about having to nip back out to the kitchen to check on it.

Pros

 Best option available – If money is of no issue to use, then the Whynter ICM is a fantastic option when it comes to a solid ice cream maker.

 Compressor – If you’ve never used a compressor ice cream maker before, then you don’t know what you’re missing out on. The difference between the two is pretty drastic, and getting one with a compressor is a complete step up in class. A compressor will help to make a smoother ice cream, in a faster amount of time.

 Great if you like thick, luxurious ice cream – If you don’t mind the high price, then it’s worth opting for this one if you want a top notch product.

Cons

 Expensive price – With higher quality machines usually comes a bigger price tag, and the Whynter is no different. This appliance is quite a bit more expensive than your run of the mill maker.

 Customer Service – Whilst I’ve personally never had a problem with any Whynter products, their are a few complaints that their customer service isn’t as good as some competitors on the market.

Overall Verdict

Undoubtedly one of the best ice cream makers around. If you’ve got the moolah, then it’s definitely worth your investment.

Sunsir Mini

Sunsir Home Mini Automatic Ice Cream, Frozen Yogurt and Sorbet Dessert Maker Machine for DIY Fun, Customize Your Own Flavor 3/5-Quart/ 0.6L, White
  • Sunsir Ice-Cream Maker makes delicious home-made ice-cream in 6-12 minutes, as well as Sherbet, Sorbet, Gelato, etc.
  • High quality made with transparent top locks into place for safety and convenient monitoring.
  • Make and serve it in the same aluminum bowl. No rock salt or special mixes required.

A huge, pretty expensive ice cream maker with an in built compressor isn’t for everyone.

If you just want to have fun with the kids, then the Sunsir Mini may prove a better option. It’s small and compact, and at only 0.6 quarts, you won’t need to worry about lots of cleaning up afterwards.

Granted, this doesn’t have the technical ability of the other ice cream makers. But, it’s simplicity is what sets it apart from rest. This is ideal if you’re looking to whip up a quick delicious sorbet for the kids, or even an accompaniment to other desserts.

Another thing that I particularly like about the Sunsir Mini is that you can actually take the aluminium bowl out and serve the ice cream in it. It’s a massive time saver, and the bowl won’t look out of place amongst the rest of your plates and bowls either.

Pros

 Make within 10 minutes – If you’re impatient like me, you don’t want to be waiting an hour for your ice cream. With this mini maker, you can whip up some ice cream within 10 minutes.

 Simple to use – If you want quick and simple ice cream, this is definitely the choice for you. It’s simple enough for kids to use on their own, which can be a useful and important technique to help them learn to do stuff themselves.

 Cheap as chips – If budget is an issue, you’ll want to make sure you’re buying something inexpensive – like this ice cream maker.

Cons

 Weak motor – You need to be sure you don’t overload the Sunsir Mini with ingredients, otherwise you’re going to have a struggling motor. It’s a small appliance and it doesn’t have the same power as a larger ice cream maker.

 Not enough for 4 – Although on the label it says that this makes enough ice cream for four, I don’t think it does. 4 hobbits maybe – but not 4 adults.

 Keep in freezer – Like many other ice cream makers, you have to pre freeze the removable bowl 24 hours beforehand, which can be kind of annoying.

Overall Verdict

The Sunsir is definitely fun to use, but it doesn’t hold it’s own as a long term contender. Just want to have fun with your little ones? Then by all means opt for the Sunsir.

iSiLER Dessert Maker

Another option for those looking for something more fun that practical, the iSiLER will have your kids screaming with joy when it produces delicious treats.

If you’re a health buff looking for an alternative to ice cream that’s lower on calories but still tastes great, then it could be worth considering the iSiLER. You can turn fruit into dessert pretty easily – that’s right, no need for thickening ice cream powder or anything! Of course what you’re going to get is a sorbet equivalent, but it’s still a good option for a delicious dessert.

This dessert maker comes with a free recipe book, which gives you an abundance of good ideas that you can use to help you decide on what to make. If you’d like a simple option, then this is a great option for you.

Pros

 Perfect for summer fun – No, it’s not going to make you the most awesome ice cream. But, it’s great fun to use with the kids.

 Great for healthy stuff – If you’re after making healthier stuff for your kids, then the iSiLER makes it extremely easy.

 Cheap – It’s not going to bankrupt you, so even if you only end up using it every now and then, it can be a fun investment.

Cons

 A little difficult to clean – Compared to some of the other options, this ice cream maker is a little difficult to clean properly and it’s not as easy as just removing the bowl.

 Not good for making real ice cream – Sure, the iSiLER is fantastic for making small quick sorbets to have fun with. But you’re not going to find it easy making real ice cream with the iSiLER, because it doesn’t use 

 Not well made – The iSiLER isn’t particularly well made, but what do you really expect for this price?

Overall Verdict

The iSiLER is a good option for anyone that just wants something fun to enjoy with their kids. It’s not going to last forever, and it’s not of the highest quality – but it’s a fun toy to use and can produce some awesome fruit sorbets.

Cuisinart ICE-45

Cuisinart ICE-45 Mix It In Soft Serve 1-1/2-Quart Ice Cream Maker, White
  • Easy-lock Lid with Window - Lid is designed to remove and lock easily. An ingredient window allows you to pour ingredients directly through the top and watch the freezing process, Base - Contains heavy-duty motor strong enough to make and dispense ice cream. BPA Free
  • Mixing Arm (not shown) - Mixes and aerates ingredients in freezer bowl to create smooth soft ice cream, Dispensing Bracket with Handle - Dispenses the soft ice cream when handle is pulled down. Removable for easy cleaning, Rubber Feet - Nonslip feet keep base stationary during use
  • 1 1⁄2-Quart Freezer Bowl (not shown) - Contains cooling liquid within a double-insulated wall to create fast and even freezing. Double wall keeps the bowl cool and at an even temperature, Condiment Chute - Mix-ins are dispensed from the chute into your ice cream cone or bowl while you dispense ice cream. Removable for easy cleaning

I’m the first to admit; soft serve ice cream is my favorite type of ice cream. So, it only makes sense that I include an ice cream maker which is specifically designed to produce soft serve ice cream!

Whilst the machine does admittedly look a bit complex, it isn’t as difficult as you’d think to get the hang of using. If you’re okay with taking a while to prepare your ice cream, the the ICE-45 is a suitable option. It’s simple to use once you’ve prepared the ingredients and the maker itself.

One main thing that many people don’t consider with their ice cream maker is that you’ll need to freeze the bowl or container beforehand. Of course, the larger the container, the more space in your freezer that you’ll need. This is the main reason that you should consider a more expensive ice cream maker; because it makes this much easier! If you don’t mind this, then the ICE-45 is a great option if you love soft serve ice cream (who doesn’t!).

Aside from this, there are some good things about the ICE-45. It’s quiet, and makes ice cream in a different way from the majority of competitors on the market. You just need to ensure that you’re freezing your ingredients properly beforehand to get the best soft serve ice cream that you can.

Pros

 Cone holder makes it easy – The cone holder makes it super easy to make ice cream cones, as opposed to ice cream in a bowl like the other options available.

 Great if you like toppings – Using a soft serve ice cream maker is awesome if you want to take advantage of the deliciousness of sprinkles and other toppings. 

 Delicious ice cream – Like I said, soft serve ice cream is my absolutely favorite (it reminds me of chasing the ice cream van when I was a kid!). This is the case for a lot of people, with soft serve ice cream bringing back an array of memories.

Cons

 There’s a knack to using it properly – To get the most out of the ICE-45, you really need to know how to utilise it properly. You MUST freeze the ingredients beforehand to make sure that your ice cream is soft enough. If you don’t do this, you’re going to get gushy ice cream.

 Confined to one type – If you’re using the soft serve maker, then you’re confined to one type of ice cream – you can’t really make sorbets and other delicious desserts.

 The topping dispensers aren’t great – The ICE-45 has three topping dispensers which sounds super cool, but they’re a bit flimsy. You’ll probably just end up using separate bowls, in all honesty.

Overall Verdict

Everyone loves soft serve ice cream don’t they? If you love soft serve ice cream too, then it only makes sense to find yourself a good soft serve ice cream maker.

How to Pick an Ice Cream Maker

When you’re picking an ice cream maker, you want to make sure that you’re getting the right one for you. To do this, there are a few things that you’ll want to take into consideration to ensure that you’re getting a good deal. Whilst an isn’t cream maker isn’t the biggest purchase you’ll ever make, it’s worth getting something that you’re definitely going to use.

With or without compressor

Machines with a compressor tend to be a little more expensive in price, so it’s worth thinking about whether you need an ice cream maker with a compressor built in. A compressor can help you to make smoother ice cream, primarily because they churn and freeze the ice cream much fast than those without. But, an ice cream maker with a compressor isn’t a must to make good ice cream.

Size

Although you might not think that the size of your ice cream maker is a big deal, it can prove to be an issue. If you’ve already got a packed out kitchen, then a big and bulky beast can be the last thing that you need. So, consider your situation. If you’re just looking to make the occasion bowl of ice cream with the kids, then get a more compact ice cream maker. But if you’re going to be doing it every weekend or you’re entertaining guests, then you may need something larger.

Price

Of course, the price is something you’re going to have to factor into any purchase. This is true for ice cream makers too. As you can see from my list, they can range from 25 bucks to 225 bucks! It’s worth setting yourself a budget before deciding on what one you’re going to get. If this is your first ice cream maker, then there’s no need to spend more than $50-100.

Comparison of the Best Ice Cream Makers

Brand Model Produces Our Verdict
Cuisinart Ice-21-R 1 1-2 Quarts Most Affordable Ice Cream Maker
Hamilton Beach 68330N 4 Quarts Excellent large ice cream maker
Cuisinart Ice-30R 2 Quarts Best for Home Use
Nostalgia Retro 4 Quarts For those looking for an old school feel
Cuisinart Ice-100 1-1/2 Quarts Best Ice Cream Maker with Compressor
Whynter ICM-200LS 2.1 Quarts Top High End Luxury Ice Cream Maker
Sunsir Mini 0.6 Quarts A Small Ice Cream Machine that works
iSiLER Dessert Varies Great for sorbets and fruit desserts
Cuisinart Ice-45 1 1/2 Quarts Best Soft Serve Ice Cream Machine

Conclusion

Overall, it’s really down to you to decide what the best ice cream maker for you is. In my experience, the ICE-21 is the perfect entry level maker if you’re looking to just get started making ice cream. If you’re looking for something a little bit more luxurious, then the Whynter ICM-200LS may prove to be a better choice for you (though it’s five times the price!). You might also want to consider an ice cream scoop if you’re planning to make ice cream often.

Making ice cream can be an awesome way to spend time with your family, or even a way to break the ice (cream) on a first date. So, make sure that you get one that’s good enough quality that it’s going to last you a good while.

Ice Cream versus Gelato – What’s the difference?

ice-cream-gelato

If you’ve ever wondered what the difference is between ice cream and gelato, then you’re not alone. Many people think that they’re exactly the same thing, and as an Italian I’m appalled!

Whilst there isn’t a massive difference between the two, there are subtle differences which make the ice cream versus gelato argument quite interest. Which one is better for your waistband? And more importantly, which one tastes better? Well, I’ll have a look into that and cover what you need to know to differentiate between the two.

Ice Cream versus Gelato

Quick Roundup

If you’re in a rush and don’t have time to check out the full article, I’ve decided to round it up in this quick list of Pros and Cons of both gelato and ice cream. These are;

Gelato

Much thicker in consistency due to slower churning process

Less fat and therefore usually lower calories

Served at a warmer temperature than ice cream (around 15 degree lower traditionally)

Available in some unique flavors (liquorice, anyone?) but usually similar.

Ice Cream

Thinner consistency as ice cream is made with a much faster churning process

More fat due to the use of solely cream and no milk in traditional ice cream

Served colder than gelato

My favorite!

These are the main points that you may notice a difference between ice cream and gelato. There aren’t many other differences between the two, and you likely won’t notice a difference unless you really love ice cream.

Ingredients

The ingredients in these two desserts are extremely similar, though they do vary slightly. The main difference is that gelato is made using whole milk as well as cream, whereas ice cream will just use cream. Here’s an example of the staple ingredients you might expect to find in a standard gelato;

Of course, usually you’d add things like fruit and chocolate in accordance to what flavor ice cream you are making. These are the staple ingredients of your gelato, though. When you’re making ice cream, often you’ll need to use the best saucepan set to ensure that you’re getting a good consistency.

Carbs

Gelato will usually be slightly higher in carbohydrates than ice cream, but certainly not by a significant amount. The use of milk in gelato will give you a higher amount of carbs in your gelato.

If you’re specifically looking to minimize the amount of carbohydrates in your gelato, you can always consider using an alternative to whole milk like soy milk. Specifically unsweetened soy milk, as this is particularly low in carbohydrates, which make it perfect for making a low carb gelato – important if you’re on a keto diet!

Fat Content

This is the main area where ice cream and gelato tend to differ. Traditionally, ice cream is made with only heavy cream, whereas gelato is made with cream and milk. This makes gelato slightly lower in fat that ice cream.

I have seen a lot of gelato recipes that tend not to use milk; this isn’t gelato! You’re just making ice cream. Ask any Italian and they’ll tell you that a good gelato uses a good amount of whole milk (3.5% milk is best in my opinion) in proportion to the amount of cream that you’re going to use. An approximate amount to use is double the milk to the amount of cream that you’re going to use. For example, if you have a recipe with one cup of cream, use two cups of whole milk, as this will allow it to be thicker and frothier.

Protein

Again, gelato uses whole milk which has a relatively high protein content in relation to ice cream. This makes it slightly higher on protein, but not by too much.

The difference in protein will usually rely in your ice cream or gelato toppings, too. For example, if you have an ice cream that’s topped with nuts, then this is going to increase the protein content of your dessert. You can also consider using a small amount of whey protein in your ice cream/gelato if this if you would like to increase the protein content of the dessert.

Which is better for dieting?

Both gelato and ice cream are fine as part of a regular, balanced diet. They use similar ingredients, but in my experience, I prefer to eat gelato when I am dieting. This is because I can use low calorie milk and less eggs in my gelato, which reduces the amount of fat significantly.

In all honesty, you probably won’t notice much difference between the two if you limit the amount of dessert you’re eating. It doesn’t really matter which you eat; if you eat too much of it, you’re going to gain weight.

Taste

To get the best gelato, you’ll have to serve it slightly warmer than what you would serve an ice cream. Not by much, but this is pretty noticeable and will definitely affect the taste difference between the two.

You’ll also likely notice that a gelato has a far more intense flavour than an ice cream because of the way that it’s churned. Not only this, but stereotypically Italians are more likely to use a richer and intense flavor for a gelato than they would with an ice cream. Flavors like pistachio work better as a gelato because you can make them taste richer than you can with an ice cream.

Texture

The difference in texture is, in my opinion, the biggest difference between ice cream and gelato. Because of the way that gelato is made, you’ll definitely notice that it feels a lot denser in your mouth.

This is mainly because of the milk that’s used in gelato, but also because of the slower churning process that is used when making gelato. I always say that it’s a lot easier to make gelato in your home ice cream maker, because you don’t have to churn it as fast as you would with ice cream. Proper ice cream machines are more suited to making ice cream because they have the ability to churn the ice cream much faster than you can with a smaller ice cream maker that you’re using at home.

With both ice cream and gelato, it’s important to ensure that you’re churning the ice cream properly to get a good consistency.

Variety of Flavors

Whilst ice cream and gelato both use similar flavors, there are a few differences which can make a difference.

For example, fruit is an extremely popular option in both ice cream and gelato. Strawberry, Raspberry.. both very popular. But, usually gelato can use puree which give it a more intense flavor than ice cream. That’s why if I’m going to pick a flavor like raspberry, I prefer to go for a gelato as it’s stronger on the tastebuds.

Another really big difference that you might notice with gelato, especially if you’re visiting Italy, is that they are more likely to use spices and herbs. This is either as decoration, or actually part of the ingredients of the gelato. Not only spices and herbs, but stronger flavors like liquorice are actually extremely popular choices for a homemade gelato (it’s not my personal taste, but hey ho!).

Allergies

Avoiding allergies is like avoiding a minefield when you’re eating ice cream and gelato. It’s important to know what the ingredients are of your chosen dessert to make sure that there’s nothing in there that you’re allergic to.

It’s pretty obvious that both gelato and ice cream are not suitable for someone allergic to dairy. They use cream and milk as the primary ingredient, so unfortunately you’ll need to avoid traditional ice cream if you’re lactose intolerant.

Not all hope is lost, however; if you are allergic to lactose, then you can always find a dairy free alternative ice cream that uses soy milk or coconut milk, or you can opt for a delicious sorbet as an alternative (sorbets only use fruit, so you don’t need to worry about the inclusion of milk).

Another big one that might affect your allergies is nuts. Both ice cream and gelatos use a lot of nuts in certain flavors; pistachios and hazelnuts are some of my favorites. For this reason, it’s important to check the ingredients of any ice cream that you’re going to order.

Top Brands

If you’re in the US, then the most popular brand of gelato is undoubtedly Talenti. Talenti is a good option if you’re looking for a delicious gelato that is much thicker than what you might be used to with regular ice cream. It’s undoubtedly my favorite gelato brand in the United States.

talenti-gelato

If you’re going for ice cream, then in my opinion you can never go wrong with Breyers. I know, I know.. everyone loves Ben & Jerry’s and Dairy Queen, and they’re okay too. But I prefer Breyers as they tend to be higher quality, which is something that I look for in my ice cream. Plus, Breyers tend to be quite a bit lower in calories than B & J, which means I can eat more of it!

breyers-ice-cream

My favourite Gelato recipes

If you’re looking to make your own gelato, I thought I’d better round up some of my favorite options.

Overall Verdict

To sum it up, there aren’t many difference between the two and you likely will not notice this unless you eat a heck of a lot of ice cream. Personally, I’ll always opt for a good gelato when possible as I prefer it, bue it is subjective to what you are looking for in an ice cream.

Why is ice cream made with salt?

ice-cream-salt

Although you might think the history of ice cream is boring, you really couldn’t be further from the truth. There’s many different things about ice cream that you might not know, so here we are at Uncle Mikes to help you learn about some of the common things that you might wonder about ice cream.

Why is ice cream made with salt?

Well, this actually dates back to the 17th century and the people of that era used this specific method. If you didn’t know, salt is a primary catalyst in lowering the temperature of ice cream. Back then, they used to use it in ice cream, ice and everything like that. Ever wonder why salt was started to be used on the roads all over the world? Yes, this started because salt rose the temperature so much that the ice would then be solid instead of patchy.

So, the reason that salt is used in ice cream isn’t for taste unless in special different flavours like salted caramel. It’s actually just used to keep the ice cream of a good thickness and consistency.

Interesting, huh?

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realise that ice cream is primarily popular throughout the heat of the summer, right? So, ever wonder what they used to use before freezers were invented?

You got it! Salted ice! Well, I say salted ice, they used to use the ice out of salt lakes, which was used specifically because it kept the temperature super low. This was actually made popular in the Lake District in the UK, which is a part of England that is full of big gorgeous lakes. If you ever get the chance, I highly recommend that you got over there and visit the Lake District as it is one of the major tourist destinations in the UK outside of London and Buckingham Palace.

Anyway I hope you learned something about ice and why they use salt in it; we only use the best salt in  our ice cream!

 

Ever wonder how ice cream is made from scratch?

make-ice-cream-from-scratch

If it’s ever interested you in learning exactly how ice cream is made, then we’re here to give you the lowdown. Unfortunately, it’s impossible for you to get ice cream the same quality at we make it at Uncle Mikes as it is our profession and we use machines worth thousand and thousands of dollars, so this isn’t at all possible.

You should be really really care when choosing which ingredients that you are going to use in your ice cream. This is because the ingredients that you use in your ice cream will have a massive effect on the end product that is produced, so you really need to know what you are doing in regards to your ice cream.

If you follow the below instructions, you should be able to get an acceptable level of ice cream.

Making the ice cream from scratch

  1. Heat the milk to around 50 degrees celcius. This is the best level that you should heat your milk to so that it doesn’t curdle.
  2. You shouldn’t mix in any of the gelatin until until it has dissolved completely so that you do not need to worry about the gelatin being too thick and this will help you later in the ice cream making process
  3. Pasteurising the ice cream is also a super important part of this process, as with making any complete dairy product. Pasteurization is named after the French baker Louis Pastuer, who first invented dairy in the 17th Century. You should get the heat to approximately 75 degrees and hold it there for one or two minutes until you can see it bubbling

After this, the ice cream needs to be homogenized. This is the most important part of the process as without doing this you won’t get a really good texture to the ice cream so make sure that you do this part really well. It will also make the ice cream slightly healthier as it reduces the amount of fat that is in the ice cream significantly. And when I say significantly, I mean it! The fat will not be separated after it is stablized so don’t worry about that too much either.

After making the ice cream – Freezing and Storing

After the ice cream is finished with the homogenization process, you need to reduce the temperature to 0 degrees immediately to make sure that the ice cream is at optimum level. Unlike some other dairy substances which are best consumed fresh, you can leave ice cream for a while and it will actually improve in taste! If you don’t freeze your ice cream properly, it can go bad.

To freeze the ice cream, make sure that your ice cream is in a seal tight container. This will help to prevent your ice cream from going off, giving you the opportunity to store your ice cream for a longer period of time.

Scooping and Presentation

Although you might not believe it, there’s actually research that shows scooped ice cream is one of the most delicious ways to serve it. That’s right; the way that you present your ice cream has a direct effect on how it tastes. That’s why in my opinion, you should try and put some effort into the way you present your ice cream.

Now, if you’re making homemade ice cream, I’ve got to keep it real with you; it probably won’t taste as good as the ice cream man. But, there is one thing that you cn do to try and match him. That’s right; toppings!

Sprinkles

If you have young kids at home, then this is my favorite addition to ice cream! I don’t really know why, but kids just go crazy for sprinkles! If you can, get a few different colors and let your kids run riot.

Syrup

Syrup always goes best with vanilla ice cream. It enables you to combine two flavors and two textures, which is awesome if you’re not a fan of making two different types of ice cream at once.

Whipped Cream

My personal favorite that I’m pretty upset is super underrated is adding a little whipped cream to your ice cream. Doing this gives you the sundae feel, and if you’re really feeling it you can always add a maraschino cherry on top!

Conclusion

Voila! You should have some really great ice cream for you and all of your family to enjoy. Remember, this is a super basic method for learning how to create some super ice cream for you and your children. Delicious!

Does Ice Cream Go Bad?

ice-cream-go-bad

A super common question that we’re asked at Uncle Mike’s. Does ice cream go bad?

Well, due to the fact that it is made of milk, then yes there’s definitely the potential for your ice cream to go off after some time. Though it won’t be immediately, this is an unfortunate inevitability that will happen, unless you take the correct precautions.

Firstly, lets just clarify this; your everyday fridge won’t store your ice cream at a good temperature over larger periods of time. The freezers that we use at big ice cream parlours are different and the temperature can be adjusted different, which isn’t the norm for the majority of fridges in your house. Over time, this will lead to your ice cream becoming crystalized and ‘off’.

One of the most common problems that will occur due to this is dehydration of your ice cream. This wil leave it too runny, and eventually it’ll turn bad due to the lack of oxygen in your ice cream. Again, this will in turn make your ice cream be termed as ‘off’.

Methods to prevent your ice cream from turning bad

Of course, you’re probably here to learn how you can avoid your ice cream from going bad. There’s a few tips that I’ve picked up over the years which can help you to prevent your ice cream going bad.

  • Make sure that your freezer is running at an optimum level of cold –  The first thing that you need to do to make sure your ice cream won’t go bad is to make sure it’s at a good level of cold. This should be well below 0 degrees celsius. By doing this, you minimize the chance of your ice cream going off.
  • Keep your ice cream in a seal tight container – Another preventative measure you can take is to make sure your ice cream is locked up tight. If it isn’t completely sealed, you do run the risk of letting oxygen into your ice cream, which will affect its long term shelf life.
  • Don’t leave the freezer door open whilst you’re putting your shopping in – This one is an absolutely ice cream killer! That significant drop in temperature can have a big affect on your ice cream over time. Try to get your frozen stuff in there as quickly as possible!
  • Use a top quality ice cream maker – If you want the best quality ice cream, you need to invest in a decent ice cream maker too.

If you follow these instructions, you can be sure that your ice cream won’t go off within the first few months. Though I wouldn’t leave ice cream any longer than that personally, it should be good for a minimum of three months; if you take care of it.

Conclusion

I know what you’re thinking.. can you eat your ice cream if it’s a little bit off? The answer is.. it’s all down to you. It’s pretty much the same as drinking milk past it’s sell by date, except with ice cream you won’t be able to taste the difference too much. Until your ice cream is reaaaally off.. then you’ll know about it!

Why does ice cream upset my stomach but not milk?

ice-cream-stomach-upset

This is one of the more commonly asked questions that I get from friends. “Why does ice cream upset my stomach, but I’m absolutely fine drinking milk?”. You wouldn’t believe the amount of times I’ve been asked that throughout my time making ice cream.

The answer is actually pretty simple. Usually, ice cream is higher in fat content than milk. Much higher, in fact. You body may be able to process small amounts of fat, so you’d notice even more of a difference if you regularly consume skimmed or semi skimmed milk.

If you didn’t already know, ice cream doesn’t actually have any milk in it. If you’re making your ice cream with milk, you’re actually making gelato! And whilst I love gelato too, there’s a big difference between the two and the way that they’re churned.

There’s also the fact that whilst gelato doesn’t have a minimum fat content, ice cream does. Currently in the US, ice cream must contain a minimum of 10% fat to be classified as ice cream. This high fat percentage explains why you might be having issues digesting the large amounts of lactose that you’ll find in an ice cream.

Why does ice cream upset my stomach but not milk?

Issues Digesting Lactose

If you’re having issues digesting lactose, then trying a gelato is a good way to minimize any issues you face if you find yourself with an upset stomach. If you’re having issues even with gelato, then you can look at trying a nice sorbet to completely avoid dairy altogether.

ice-cream-upset-stomach

Another option that many dairy lovers opt for when they’re trying to avoid ice cream itself is to go for another variation of milk entirely. As veganism increases in popularity year on year, it’s not surprise that many people are looking for an alternative to regular milk.

Now, there are many alternatives that you can try, but here’s some of the best alternatives that work well with ice cream.

Soy

Soy is probably one of the most common alternatives to milk, not just in an ice cream sense, but for milk too. If your child has a strong dairy allergy, then the likelihood is that they won’t be able to stomach milk either. To combat this, soy is usually a safe bet to go for. Though, it does come with an acquired taste that you’ll need to get used to.

Coconut Milk

If you’d like to try something with a plainer taste than soy milk, then coconut milk might be a good option for you. It’s a great choice for anyone looking for something a little different.

Almond Milk

Ah, the new(er) kid on the block. When you’re looking to cut milk out of your diet, it’s typical to switch to soy. Well, it was until almond milk came and dominated the scene a few years ago. Almond milk is an awesome alternative, and you may noticed that you’re seeing more almond milk ice creams at your local store, too. This is great for those people out there who are looking to avoid the stuffiness build up associated with lactose and dairy products.

Conclusion

So, to conclude; it’s pretty normal for you to find that you can’t digest ice cream the same way that you can digest milk or other dairy products. This is because of the high fat content in ice cream that makes it specifically hard to digest (I’m guessing you probably have the same issues with cheese too right?).

To avoid this, you can always try and find lactose free ice cream or take a lactase tablet if necessary. Personally, I’d just switch over my eating habits to sorbet – you know that you’re completely avoiding all dairy with sorbet and you won’t need to worry about getting an upset stomach.

Is Ice Cream Food?

is-ice-cream-food

It’s a pretty popular question to ask yourself; does ice cream technically count as a food or a drink? Well, we’ll answer that pretty definitively today.

Firstly, let’s look at this from a technical perspective. Ice cream is by definition a solid. This is because of it’s form; it is not a liquid. It’s a solid, which makes ice cream technically a food.

is-ice-cream-food

However, there’s more to this question that just; is ice cream food? This is because it really depends on the temperature that your ice cream is. Is there a certain low temperature that your ice cream goes to, that it transforms from a food to a drink?

If you’ve ever had an ice cream and left it on the side for a half hour, you’ll probably notice that after a while, it will undoubtedly be more like a milkshake than an ice cream. This is because as the temperature  of your ice cream gets lower and lower, it really transforms from a food to a drink. So much so, that you could say that ‘ice cream’ is a food, but ‘melted ice cream’ is actually a drink. So, you can’t definitively say that all ice cream is a food (I know, we’re getting quite deep into this!).

Now, what’s the magic temperature that your ice cream will transform into a drink?

ice-cream-drink

Ice cream is stored best at minus temperatures for long periods of time. If you want to store ice cream for a shorter period of time, then you can store it at 0 temperature just fine.

And if we say that the sweet spot for scooping ice cream is around 10 degrees (some people may argue that it’s higher or lower than that, but not by too much) then we can say that as the temperature gets to around 15-20 degrees, your ice cream will in fact transform from a food to a drink.

To take things a little further, we actually decided to ask 100 people whether they thought ice cream was a food or a drink. Although we already know technically that ice cream is a food, we wanted to see what the public opinion was on whether this delicious dessert was classed as a food or a drink.

is-ice-cream-food-or-drink

Out of the 100 people that we asked, 96 of those people confirmed that they thought ice cream was a food and not a drink. That’s an astonishing percentage, and far more than we had originally anticipated! That means that only 6 people out of 100 people thought that ice cream was a drink and not a food.

Now, this is where it gets interesting.. We also asked the same 100 people whether they thought melted ice cream was a food or a drink… are you ready for the results?

melted-ice-cream

It was 50/50. Dead on. 50 people thought that melted ice cream was a food, and 50 people thought that melted ice cream was a drink. Crazy, huh?

Ice Cream Variations that are definitely Foods

Now, there are several different variations of ice cream which we’d definitely consider as a food. Here are a few of the variations of ice cream that are definitely considered a food.

Ice Cream Cake – There’s no denying it, an ice cream cake is undoubtedly a food that you should consider trying if you haven’t already. There are some awesome ice cream cake recipes around if you haven’t seen them already, so be sure to scour the website if you want to try.

Ice Cream Sundae – Is a sundae more of a food than a traditional ice cream because of the syrups and cherries that are on it? Well, that’s really up to you to decide, but I like to think so.

Ice Cream Rolls – A Thai favorite, ice cream rolls are one of the better options you can choose if you’re looking to stick to ice cream but want it presented differently. They’re also pretty conclusive evidence that ice cream is a food – I mean, can you really roll a liquid? Didn’t think so.

Conclusion

To conclude, it really doesn’t matter too much whether you think that ice cream is a food or a drink. Technically in our eyes, it’s undoubtedly a food – but this is up for debate! Let us know in the comment section whether you think ice cream is classed as a food or a drink!

Will Sorbet Make Me Fat?

will-sorbet-make-me-fat

People often ask themselves the question; ‘will sorbet make me fat’? This is probably because they know that sorbet is generally made up of only three ingredients; fruit juice, water and SUGAR!

It’s definitely one of the more difficult questions for you to answer. If you’re looking to eat some delicious sorbet but you’re on a diet, then it’s important to now the effect sorbet will have on your diet. Will it really make you fat if you eat sorbet every day? Well, the answer is; it depends. 

will-sorbet-make-me-fat

Will Sorbet Make Me Fat?

Will sorbet make you fat?

Whilst sorbet won’t specifically make you fat, you have to make sure that you eat it in normal sized quantities. If you’re eating an entire litre of sorbet every day after dinner, the yes; it might have an effect on your waistline. But if you’re eating sorbet in smaller cup size quantities, then the likelihood is that it’s not going to have much of an effect on your diet.

The reason that many people think that sorbet will make them fat is that it has high quantities of sugar. Not only is it made with sugar, but the fruit purees and juices that are used are pretty much all sugar, too. This means that sorbet is super high in carbohydrates. Cutting carbs has commonly been linked with the easiest way to lose weight, which is probably why sorbet has ended up with such a bad reputation.

In reality, just because something is super high in carbohydrates and sugars, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re going to gain a ton of weight. The majority of people, myself included, are of the opinion that you don’t need to completely cut carbs out to lose fat. It really depends on the amount of calories that you’re eating per day more that anything else.

How to eat sorbet and avoid getting fat?

Now, that doesn’t mean to say that eating carbs is good for dieting – too many can make it more difficult for you to lose fat, especially if you’re not getting enough exercise. A good way to combat this is making sure you getting at least 15 minutes of exercise every day. This way, you can be sure that they carbohydrates and sugars that you’re eating will be utilized and expended as energy.

If we’re to take that into account, then sorbet can actually be a really good option if you’re on a low calorie diet. This is because it’s naturally extremely low in fat – it’s basically just sugars. Because there’s only 4 calories per gram of carbohydrates, it means that even a 500ml tub of sorbet isn’t usually more than 4-500 calories, which can easily be incorporated as part of your diet.

If you’re adamant on eating sorbet on a daily basis – no judgement here – then your best option is to maintain a healthy balance in the rest of your meals for the day. If you’re eating a full tub of sorbet followed by half a pack of cookies and a bag of doritos, you’re undoubtedly going to gain weight. If you’re eating a cup of sorbet after your dinner of grilled chicken breast and salad, then no – you’re likely not going to gain much weight from this.

Conclusion

Now, it’s pretty clear to see that sorbet won’t make you fat – if you eat it in normal amounts, that is! What I love most about sorbet is that you don’t need an ice cream machine to make it, too! The key to any diet is undoubtedly balance, so strictly eating a balanced amount of sorbet will not make you fat. You may experience some weight gain if you’re eating several tubs of sorbet per day, however!

12 Super Healthy Ice Cream Bars You Need to Try Now

healthy-ice-cream-bars

“Healthy ice cream bars”.. is that even possible? Well, yes actually. There are a few different ice cream bars that you can opt for if you’re looking to enjoy something and cut calories at the same time.

Depending on what you’re looking for, you can almost definitely find a way to turn your ice cream addiction into something healthy. There are tons of options for finding healthy ice cream bars, whether that be using different variations of ice cream like sorbet and gelatos, or just using skim milk and lower fat cream. You can definitely find a lower calorie ice cream that you can make part of any diet.

Here, I’m going to have a quick look with your through these different ice cream bars that you can make part of you and your families diet.

Super Healthy Ice Cream Bars

The Skinny Cow Fudge Bars

skinny-cow-fudge-bars

Calories per bar: 110

If you want an extremely low fat fudge bar – yes, low fat and fudge in the same sentence is possible – then you’ll definitely want to check out some of the products from The Skinny Cow. Their products are specifically made for dieters, so if you want to indulge whilst on a diet, it’s a safe option to go with some of their products.

Enlightened Bars

enlightened-ice-cream-bars

Calories per bar: 70-90

Enlightened undoubtedly make some of the best healthy dairy products around; I’ve been a massive fan for a while now. These ice cream bars are an absolute lifesaver if you’re on a diet. They’re really really low in fat, and really really high in protein – perfect if you’re looking for an ice cream bars you can eat after the gym without feeling guilty.

Whilst they’re usually pretty expensive in comparison compared to normal ice cream bars, in my eyes they’re worth every penny. With various different flavors ranging from birthday cake to red velvet, you’re guaranteed to find an ice cream bar that you like.

Coconut Bliss Bars

coconut-bliss-ice-cream-bars

Calories per bar: 160

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m pretty big on my health – it’s difficult to stay healthy when you could easily eat copious amounts of Ben & Jerrys every day!

If I’m trying to stay healthy, I usually try to avoid ice creams made with lots of dairy cream and opt for a vegan alternative. These coconut bliss bars are made from organic coconut milk and organic agave syrup, so you can be sure that although they might be a tad high in calories, they’re not filled with chemicals and other stuff. If organic food is important to you, then these coconut bliss bars might be a great option for you.

Jonny Pops Barsjonny-pops

Calories per bar: 140-190

Jonny Pops bars are one of the lesser know ice cream bars on the list, though that doesn’t mean they’re any less delicious than some of the more known brands!

Starting as just a small company in Minnesota a few years ago, they’re now stored in almost every state around the US. You should check them out on social media (Instagram link), their development as a brand is pretty inspiring!

Goodpop Bars

goodpop-bars

Calories per bar: 40-70 cal non-dairy; 80-120 cal cream-based

Goodpop bars are a great choice if you’re looking for super low healthy ice cream bars that you can eat on your diet plan. They’re made up of organic ingredients, so you don’t need to worry about them being pumped full of chemicals. Because of the way that they are made and their ingredients, they are naturally gluten free – this means you don’t need to worry about eating these bars if you’re a celiac or have gluten intolerance.

There’s a great story behind them too, when a young entrepreneur decided to take a chance in 2009 and produced the glorious Goodpop brand. Cool!

Weight Watchers Ice Cream Bars

weight-watchers-ice-cream-bars

Calories per bar: 90

When in doubt.. go with Weight Watchers! Whilst I’m not a massive fans of their Candy Bars, these Giant Fudge bars are pretty delicious at only 90 calories a bar (they’re not my idea of “giant”, but whatever).

The majority of healthy ice cream bars will tend to go for fully skim milk to help cut calories, with these Weight Watchers bars being a prime example of that. Keeping the calories low is great for diabetes. With less than a gram of fat per bar, you’re able to cut calories down and ensure you can enjoy this treat without any guilt.

Julie’s Organic Sorbet Bars

julies-organic-sorbet-bars

Calories per bar – 60

Julie’s organic Bars have been around for over 20 years now, and their newer recipes are as delicious as ever. Whilst they aren’t technically an ice cream bar, they’re a great choice if you’re looking for a healhy alternative.

Julie’s Organic also make ice cream bars, but I couldn’t really include them in the healthy list because well.. they’re not that healthy! (full fat milk, heavy cream and cane sugar won’t get you on this list I’m afraid!).

Eatpops

eatpops

Calories per bar – 45-100

If you’re after something a bit different, then you could opt for something like Eatpops. They produce some delicious frozen bars, even if some of the recipes are a bit different.

Now, they are pretty damn expensive I’ll admit, but if you want to feel good about yourself and detox your body, then you could opt for these as an alternative to more unhealthy ice cream. You’re super likely to crave weird flavors when you’re pregnant, and they do come in some pretty.. unique flavors, with Kale being one of their most popular options (I know what you’re thinking.. kale?! Well, try it before you judge it!).

Luvo Yogurt Bars

yog-bars

Calories per bar – 90

You may not have heard of Luvo bars before, but they’re still pretty popular. they’re probably best known for having Derek Jeter as an ambassador!

Whilst they aren’t considered to be ice cream bars, they’re still a delicious alternative to ice cream bars. If you’re looking for a yogurt bars that is particularly low in calories, then a Luvo bar might be a great option for you.

Yoplait Bars

yoplait-bars

Calories per bar – 90

If you’ve ever been inside a Walmart, you’ve undoubtedly seen these Yoplait bars. Whilst they aren’t going to set the world alight with their taste and texture, they’re a good choice if you want a delicious bars that is relatviely low in calories.

I love love looove this idea of using these bars as a summer DIY treat with your kids! You can always use the bars with healthy fruit purees to dip in to liven up the taste a little bit – great fun for the whole family!

Snickers Mini Ice Cream Bars

snickers-mini-ice-cream-bars

Calories per bar – 90

Okay, the reason that these mini snickers bars could be considered as healthy may be based on the size as opposed to the actual contents of the bar, but it’s still super low in calories and could make the perfect after dinner treat for your kids.

Snickers ice cream bars have been a popular choice for a while now as an alternative to fast food ice cream. Whilst they definitely aren’t the healthiest of options, you could do a lot worse if you’re after a quick bite.

Yasso Bars

yasso-ice-cream-bars

Yasso Bars tend to range anywhere between 70-100 calories, and whilst they’re not technically ice cream bars, they still offer you the same refreshing feeling. My personal favorite is the Cookies and Cream ice cream bars, which although they’re a little higher than the rest at 100 cals, it’s totally worth it!

Yasso have a vast array of other delicious desserts too, so be sure to check them out and see what other kind of delicacies you can devour!

And now, for the slightly less healthy…

Rice Dream Bars

rice-dream-bars

Calories per bar: 290

Yes yes, you read that right that there’s 290 calories per Rice Dream Bar. That can’t be healthy, right?

Well whilst you might think they’re a bit high in calories – and you’d be right in thinking that – the amount of calories in your ice cream bars doesn’t define how healthy it is. This bar is coated with high fat things like nuts and coconut oil, so it’s bound to be on the high side when it comes to calories. This doesn’t, however, mean that it’s unhealthy! Far from it, in fact.

If you want a natural ice cream bar, then you should consider this one from DREAM (this is a rice dream, but they make a nice almond dream too!).

So Delicious Bars

so-delicious-ice-cream-bars

Calories per bar: 180

Everyone know I loooove So Delicious products. This is mainly because they’re made with high quality ingredients, and they taste delicious.. hence the name!

So Delicious have a massive array of ice cream bars, made from coconut milk, almond milk.. even cashew milk! Whilst their products might be a tad high on the calories, I can’t deny them from the list when you really consider how much 180 calories is. That’s only two apples, or a bag of chips – so it’s not that bad, right?

Perrys Ice Cream Bars

perrys-ice-cream-bars

Calories per bar: 180

Much similar to the Magnums that you’ll find dominate the ice cream market in the UK and Europe, Perry’s is a US equivalent that whilst isn’t the healthiest, do keep the calories below 200.

They don’t quite have the variety of some of the other ice cream bars that I’ve listed, but this doesn’t mean to say they aren’t as delicious! Give thesePerry ice cream bars a chance; you won’t be disappointed.

What makes an ice cream bar healthy, anyway?

I’m glad you asked. There are a few things that you should consider if you’re looking to get yourself a super healthy ice cream bar. They are;

 Calories – First comes first, if you’re trying to lose a few pounds then the amount of calories in your ice cream is undoubtedly the thing that you want to consider. If you can find an ice crea bars that’s under 100 calories, you’re pretty much golden.

 Low Sugar – Keeping the sugar count low is difficult with ice cream, as a certain amount of sugar is pretty much necessary for it to be made (or a sugar alternative). If you need to, you can always opt for a diabetic ice cream to keep the calories down.

 Low Fat – Whilst the fat in milk isn’t necessarily bad, especially if you’re opting for a milk alternative like coconut milk, then keeping the fat lower is great for cutting calories.

 Lack of Chemicals – This is something that people always forget, and it kind of frustrates me! Ice cream doesn’t need a ton of additional ingredients to be made, so try to avoid anything with an abundance of additional chemicals. And if you really want to avoid this stuff, you can opt for a good quality sorbet.

Conclusion

Overall, it’s important to remember that ice cream should be eaten as a treat – not all day every day! One of the best ways to ensure you’re not eating too much ice cream is too eat healthy ice cream bars, as they limit the number of calories you can eat to a good amount, and you don’t need to worry about having to scoop your own ice cream. You should always make sure that you don’t restrict yourself too much, so don’t hesitate to pick yourself up a nice ice cream bar treat every now and then.

Enlightened Ice Cream Review

enlightened-ice-cream

I don’t know about you, but my Instagram timeline has been filled with people eating Enlightened Ice Cream. It’s like suddenly out of nowhere, Enlightened has become the new Ben & Jerrys for fitness models! Whilst I like the idea that you can enjoy a super low calorie dessert, I was slightly dubious that it ws really going to be like ice cream – or even frozen yoghurt, for that matter.

After reading the ingredients list, I was baffled at how this dessert could even be the same texture as ice cream. Now, I’ll be honest and say that I only tried that plain vanilla flavor, so I can only really speak on that experience. I’m pretty sure that the chocolate flavors will probably taste a little different, but I’m yet to try those flavors so I’ll save them for a later review a little further down the line.

The reason that I said I don’t know how this can be similar to ice cream? Well, the ingredients of course! It’s primary ingredient is skim milk; fine, that’s pretty normal for a diet ice cream nowadays. But, it’s least used ingredients are sugar and cream – the foundation of any good ice cream!

Instead of using sugar, Enlightened use a mixture of monk fruit extract and erythitol – both naturally occurring sweeteners that you’re going to find in a lot of dieting products (less so with monk fruit extract, but it’s becoming more popular). And instead of using cream, Enlightened use Milk Protein Isolate; this helps the thicken the dessert, as well as increase the protein content of the ice cream.

Enlightened Ice Cream Review

Anyway, let’s have a look at a few things that I noted whilst eating the Enlightened Ice Cream;

Texture

Now I’ll admit, I did read some online reviews before eating this ice cream to check the general consensus. Whilst the majority of reviews I read were saying “OMG this is AMAZING!” because they had obviously been sent the ice cream for free, there were a few honest ones amongst them. Enlightened ice cream has a frothy texture, almost like you’ve used a milk frother to make it creamier.

The honest reviews seemed to imply that this ice cream wasn’t as creamy as what you may get with a regular ice cream. I’d probably disagree with this – I found it to be extremely creamy! This sis likely due to the amount of protein isolate that’s used, which adds to the texture of the dessert.

Taste

The taste of the ice cream is pretty bland, in my opinion. I guess I did just try the plain vanilla version, so I can’t speak for all of the flavors but yeah.. it didn’t taste as good as a regular ice cream, which I’m guessing is the goal of these protein ice creams that have become more and more popular recently.

This is likely because it doesn’t have the sugar and cream that you’d use in a regular ice cream. So, I can’t really argue with the fact that this doesn’t taste like a regular ice cream. Like many foods that try and put a healthy spin on things, it’s literally impossible to maintain the same taste with this.

That doesn’t necessarily mean to say that the taste of ice cream is bad, by the way. It’s still pretty good. But, it’s just not quite as good as what you’d get with a regular ice cream, in my opinion.

Conclusion

To conclude, in all honesty I probably wouldn’t consider purchasing this ice cream again. I love the fact that it’s so low in calories, but for that that isn’t really worth the lack of taste. I’d much prefer to have a higher calorie ice cream and cut the calories out somewhere else!