I love sweets. I could live off of chocolate alone. A sweet treat that my entire family enjoys is ice cream. We don't indulge too often, but usually the kids will have a few scoops of ice cream after dinner on Saturday's when Grammy is here. Watching the brain freeze faces my two year old makes is quite comical. When shopping for ice cream, I have found that finding one that is not loaded with artificial flavors and ingredients or high fructose corn syrup is quite the challenge. Like anything else, the best way to make sure that the ingredients are all natural is to make it yourself.
This ice cream maker is fully automatic with a built-in freezer and compressor that mixes and freezes ice cream for you with no pre-chilling required. That means all you have to do is turn it on, add your ingredients, set the timer and voila - you are on your way to homemade ice cream! And it only takes 60 minutes for it to be finished. You are not limited to ice cream either. You can also make sorbet, frozen yogurt and gelato.
I will say that this ice cream maker is rather large, so you will need to have either a good amount of counter space or a lot of cabinet storage. I have neither, which means my ice cream maker is residing in the office in between uses. Just to give you a size comparison, I placed it next to our Keurig Mini Brewer.
Inside you will find a metal bowl, with handle for easy removal, as well as the plastic mixer. Both are easy to take out and clean.
The instruction manual for the NewAir AIC-210 Ice Cream Maker includes several recipes for you to get started making your frozen treats. I decided to start with their basic vanilla ice cream recipe and add some crushed cookies to make it Cookies n Cream. I started with organic whole milk, heavy cream, sugar, Fair Trade vanilla extract, and organic Newman-o cookies. I discovered on my shopping trip that no grocery store carry organic heavy cream. I wonder if it is even made at all?
I mixed together the ice cream ingredients, minus the cookies and then poured them into the ice cream maker.
Next you place the lid and then the black motor back on top. You will see there is a little door on the clear lid, this is for adding ingredients like cookies, candy, etc. These typically are added near the end.
Once you start the machine the display will show you the time remaining as well as the current temperature inside where it is making the ice cream.
Now comes the only hard part - waiting. It will take 60 minutes for your ice cream to be ready, which really isn't all that bad. While I waited, I pounded the cookies into crumbles and kept watching the ice cream maker do its work. As the the ice cream starts to form and gets thicker, you will notice the churner moves more and more slowly. With ten minutes left to go, I noticed it stopped churning but the compressor was still going. This is the NewAir AIC-210's automatic shut-off feature that protects the motor by stopping the unit if the mixture becomes too thick. But the cooling was still going until the time was finished. Since the cookies needed to be added to the last 5 minutes of the process, I ended up having to mix those in by hand. I suggest wearing oven mits when you remove the bucket because it is COLD.
I transferred the ice cream to a plastic container to store in my freezer. I let it sit in there for a few minutes while I cleaned up and put my ice cream maker away. Then I scooped some into a bowl to give my first attempt at homemade ice cream a taste.
Please note that the opinions and views expressed in this review are my own and based on my personal experience with the product and/or company. You may encounter a different experience with this than I did. I received free product to review.