Most of us already know just how amazingly versatile most blenders are so why not go looking for the best blender for ice cream making?
Truth be told, smoothies are awesome and smoothie bowls are a delicious, nutritious breakfast but making ice cream in a blender is much better than anything else. Who doesn’t love ice cream? I love eating ice cream all year round but I don’t have a clue why it’s so much better in the winter. That’s a mystery for another time.
For now, let me tell you that it’s a bit improper to say that we’re making ice cream in a blender because we totally need a freezer to complete the process. We’re making the mix that will be then frozen and turned into ice cream.
This is the classic method in which we make homemade ice cream similar to what we buy in a store.
However, we can also make something that resembles a very soft ice cream by adding a lot of ice cubes to the rest of our ingredients. This type of dessert that imitates ice creams without spending hours in the freezer will have to be eaten immediately because all those ice cubes will make it watery.
Another method is to freeze the fruits and then blend them until they’re soft. However, if you blend them for too long, the motor will melt them and, instead of making very soft ice cream, you’ll be making a very cold smoothie.
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Best Blender for Ice Cream Reviews
As I’ve quickly pointed out, there are multiple ways in which we can use a blender to make ice cream.
After you’ve chosen the best blender for ice cream based on your budget and expectations, you’re going to have a fun time experimenting with all these ways of making frozen desserts.
Will you choose to make classic homemade ice cream or you’ll prefer blending ingredients alongside many cups of ice or to just freeze fruits and blend them quickly? That’s up to you to decide.
I prefer making classic homemade ice cream, the kind that needs to spend hours in the freezer because I can make a lot and it doesn’t have to be eaten on the spot.
However, for a quick dessert on a sunny day, blending a bunch of delicious ingredients with a few cups of ice is my go-to. I love it because it’s very fast and easy to make. It’s like making a very dense, very cold smoothie so it doesn’t really require special steps or techniques.
Let’s see which are my favorite models so that you can move on to the fun part.
1. Nutribullet Personal Blender 600: Cheapest Blender for Ice Cream
It’s powerful enough that it can handle whatever you want to do: whether you want to follow a classic ice cream recipe or you want to blend ingredients with lots of ice cubes or you want to blend frozen fruits.
However, I should also warn you that it’s not exactly the best machine if you have a lot of people to serve desserts to.
Countertop blenders have big pitchers that can make 4-6 servings in the same container. On the other hand, personal blenders will be able to make 2 servings tops.
Thus, if you’re using a personal blender you’ll just have to blend multiple times until everyone has a dessert in front of them.
That’s pretty much the only inconvenience I see for this Nutribullet Personal Blender 600. Considering the affordable price, I think this inconvenience can be overlooked if you’re on a budget.
We need powerful blenders if we want to crush ice or blend frozen fruits into a smooth texture. Since that’s what we get with the nutribullet 600, you can see why it’s one of my favorites.
To give you an idea of how powerful it is and how much I like it, I should mention that I also reviewed it as one of the best blenders for carrot juice. It’s highly versatile.
It will also work for making pureed food or for making smoothies and smoothie bowls, milkshakes, for grinding spices, and for so much more.
The main attraction about this machine is the 600 watts motor base.
It will crush ice without any hiccups but it will be a bit noisy when doing it.
The 600 watts motor might not seem like much when we compare it with countertop blenders but this nutribullet can pretty much do all those large blenders can in a smaller package.
Nutribullet personal blenders can be used by people with large families but they’re perfect for serving 1 or 2 people. It’s also perfect for those with smaller kitchens.
The nutribullet 600 comes with a 24 oz cup. It also includes a to-go lid for smoothies on the go.
In the recipe book that comes with this model you’ll also find instructions about which would be the best order to add ingredients for your recipes.
Greens and veggies are added first, fruits next, nuts, liquid without exceeding MAX line, and ice.
We can make smoothies with water, dairy and non-dairy milk, fruit juices, etc. The liquid base for smoothies can be whatever we prefer.
On the other hand, the liquid base for classic ice cream making is heavy cream, whole milk or full-fat coconut milk.
How to make ice cream with nutribullet 600
In their recipe book, we’ll find two recipes that might interest us.
The first one is for mango popsicles and it’s made with frozen mango and coconut water. That’s really all you need but you can also add a bit of honey if you want it really sweet.
Once you blend the frozen mango and the coconut water, all you have to do is pour the mixture into popsicle molds and freeze for about 4 hours.
The second recipe is for berry n’ice cream sandwiches. The sandwiches are made from no-bake graham cracker cookies and we also get a recipe for the cookies.
The n’ice cream is made from frozen banana, frozen strawberries, frozen raspberries and vanilla almond milk or any other milk or milk alternative we want to use. For additional sweetness, add honey or sugar.
As you can see from these two quick examples, the nutribullet 600 totally works for making different types of frozen desserts. It just makes them in smaller quantities due to the 24 oz cup. But that’s easily solved by blending a few times.
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2. Ninja SS351 Foodi Power Blender & Processor: Overall the Best Blender for Ice Cream
I’ve mentioned in several articles that the Ninja SS351 is at the top of my list when it comes to ultimate favorites.
Whether we’re looking for the best blender for nuts and seeds or the best blender to puree food or for anything else that we want to do in a blender, the Ninja SS351 is among the top models that I want to talk about.
Why do I like it so much?
Because it has a decent price, it’s a complex system not just a simple blender, and it provides excellent power and quality without having a $400-$500 price tag.
Since it does have a price around $200, I couldn’t exactly call it cheap but it’s a good investment if you care about high-quality kitchen appliances.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a model that makes wonderful ice cream and costs under $100, then the above nutribullet 600 is the option you should check out.
Since I’ve mentioned that this Ninja SS351 is a complex system and not just a simple countertop blender, let’s see what it includes:
- 1400-Watt unit
- 72-oz power blender & processor pitcher
- total crushing and chopping blade
- dough blade
- 24-oz nutrient extraction cup with spout lid
- 14-oz smoothie bowl maker with storage lid
The 1,400 watts motor base really needs no further explanation about how powerful it is. It will crush, blend and deliver a smooth texture for whatever ingredients we throw in the pitcher.
The 72 oz pitcher is a wonderful size for larger families.
This machine works both as a processor and as a blender because it has a blade that looks like nothing we’ve ever seen from other manufacturers. This is called a total crushing and chopping blade and it’s wonderful.
The second blade we get is a dough blade. If you’re looking for a dough making machine that isn’t a big, expensive stand mixer, the Ninja SS351 can act as a very good replacement. You can make dough for bread, pizza, and desserts.
The 24 oz nutrient extraction cup with spout lid transforms the motor base into a personal blender. It’s a go-to cup for your favorite drinks that can be enjoyed wherever you go.
Last but not least, the 14 oz smoothie bowl maker comes with its own unique blade. It can be used to make smoothie bowls, hummus, pureed food, etc. if you want to make smaller portions.
The motor base will recognize which cup/pitcher is attached so it will function accordingly.
You might believe that we’re done but there are still a few things to know about the Ninja SS351.
We get 6 preset Auto-IQ programs: extract, smoothie, bowl, spread, chop, dough.
We can also use a knob if we want to control the speed and not use any of these 6 programs.
And we have the pulse feature, which is used for shredding chicken, grinding raw meat, crushing ice, chopping raw vegetables, etc.
However, as you’re going to see, the pulse feature is also very helpful for making ice cream. The pulse feature is one of my favorite features for all countertop blenders.
How to make ice cream with Ninja SS351
In order to fully understand how wonderful the Ninja SS351 is for making frozen desserts, I decided to check out the Ninja Foodi Cold & Hot Blender Cookbook for Beginners. It’s a great resource with a lot of recipes.
Among these many recipes, you’ll also find recipes for blackberry ice cream, strawberry sorbet, mango sorbet, pineapple whip, chocolate whip, pineapple whip slush, and strawberry ice cream. Let me tell you, reviewing the best blenders for ice cream is really bad for my cravings.
Let’s get a quick idea about what a few of these recipes for ice creams, sorbets and the rest imply.
For the blackberry ice cream, we need frozen blackberries, vanilla extract, almond milk, mascarpone cheese and full-fat yogurt.
The pulse feature is used until the whole mix is smooth.
Strawberry sorbet is made with frozen strawberries and a bit of honey. It’s simple and delicious and perfect for vegans who crave delicious frozen desserts. Once again, we’re using the pulse feature.
Pineapple whip is made with frozen pineapple, honey and orange juice. I recommend making your own orange juice if you can, freshly squeezed is always best. And the pulse feature is again the one we use.
If you want to salivate, let me tell you about the chocolate whip, which is made with frozen cherries, cocoa powder, coconut milk and coconut butter. Use the pulse function until the mixture is smooth.
Where to Buy?
3. Vitamix E310 Explorian
Thus, we get quality, global renown, a hoard of happy users, not that many negative reviews, a reputation for quality, and high prices as the cherry on top.
Among Vitamix machines, the E310 Explorian is actually one of the most affordable. That’s why I decided to review it.
If you want a Vitamix model but you don’t want to spend over $400, this might be a good choice.
We get a 1,200-1,400 watts motor base. It’s powerful and there’s not much else to say about that. It will go through several cups of ice in a single blending session without any problem at all.
This power is the thing that most interests me when I’m looking for the best blenders for ice cream making.
The 48 oz pitcher is on the smaller side. It could be described as being perfect for blending medium batches for small family meals.
Vitamix makes countertop blenders that are very easy to use.
We get a knob for speeds and a pulse button. That’s pretty much it.
We swiftly go from the lowest to the highest speed if we want the smoothest texture, like we want when we make smoothies, ice cream, frozen desserts, smoothie bowls, hummus, puree food, etc.
Or we stop the knob on a lower speed if we want chunkier textures.
How to make ice cream with Vitamix E310 Explorian
There’s The Vitamix Cookbook that can be very helpful if we want to see what their blenders are capable of when it comes to making frozen desserts, preparing ingredients or making so many other dishes and drinks.
Let’s take their apple pie ice cream as an example because just the name alone sounds divine.
The ingredients needed are frozen apple juice concentrate, vanilla low-fat yogurt, apple, vanilla extract, ground cinnamon, banana and a bunch of cups of ice cubes.
All the ingredients are placed in the pitcher and the speed is increased from the lowest to the highest.
In about 30 seconds, the sound of the motor will change and 4 mounds should form in the mixture. That’s when we turn it off and enjoy this quickly-made ice cream before it melts down.
The cookbook also features other recipes, like banana freeze, strawberry tofu freeze, tropical freeze, and tropical mango freeze.
These are quick recipes that rely on frozen ingredients and lots of ice cubes to create instant frozen desserts. But you can make whatever ice cream recipe you want, including for mixes that go in the freezer for a few hours.
Where to Buy?
4. Vitamix 5200
Not so much actually.
It’s got a slightly more powerful motor base, a considerably higher price and a bigger pitcher.
It has a 64 oz container, which is described as being ideal for blending medium to large batches.
Frankly, I’m not saying that the 5200 is not an amazing machine because it is. It’s powerful and many people absolutely love it. I just find the price a bit too high.
If you’re a fan of Vitamix and you have the budget for it, it’s going to be a great acquisition.
Where to Buy?
5. Breville Super Q Blender: The Most Powerful Blender for Ice Cream
Is it worth the high price? I’m not totally sure. If you’re comfortable spending such a high sum of money on a blender, then it’s worth the price. But we must not forget that we have the Ninja SS351 as an affordable alternative. In the end, I guess I just prefer the Ninja over this Breville.
Although, it’s going to be interesting to see everything that the Super Q has to offer.
First, we have an 1,800 watts motor base, which is crazy powerful. Usually, commercial blenders start at 1,800W so that motor is definitely outstanding when we consider that it’s made for household use.
Breville mentions that it has the highest possible motor rating. We’ll take their word for it.
The 68 oz pitcher is big enough for 4 big servings or 6 smaller ones.
Furthermore, we also get a 24 oz on the go cup that transforms this countertop blender into a personal blender.
Super Q stands for Super Quick, Super Quiet, Super Blender. I would agree with all three, with one caveat: super expensive.
There are 5 one touch programs: green smoothie, smoothie, soup, pulse|ice crush and frozen dessert.
Thus, Breville lets us know that their Super Q is definitely up for helping you make some delicious desserts and they let us know about that by creating a special button for it.
But we also get to select 12 speed settings, among which we find: mill, puree, blend, chop, mix, and stir. We select any of these 12 speed settings by using the Speed Control Dial clockwise.
All in all, this is a fairly easy to use model.
How to make ice cream with Breville Super Q
In the cookbook that comes with the Super Q, we can also find a few frozen dessert recipes, like: peach, passion fruit & raspberry yogurt pops, chocolate hazelnut & banana freeze, banana, pecan & honey frozen yogurt, coconut, mango & lime gelato, blood orange & cantaloupe granita, watermelon, strawberry & mint sorbet, and lemon sorbet.
All the recipes included in that cookbook are very easy to make, they come with clear instructions, and you can check them out here.
Where to Buy?
All in all, if you don’t want to spend money on an ice cream maker, looking for the best blender for ice cream is the perfect alternative and you can use it to make so many other dishes and drinks.