Have you ever wanted to make your own homemade ice cream but didn’t know how? Making ice cream at home with an Igloo Ice Maker is as easy as making your favorite soft drink and will take you less than 10 minutes to complete! Here’s how to use an Igloo Ice Maker to make homemade ice cream in nine simple steps.
Step 1: Find a Good Recipe
There are hundreds of ice cream recipes available online. Research your favorites and find ones that are right for you. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel here, but you may want to consider adding your own twist or switching up ingredients based on what’s in season or available at your local market.
For example, make a pumpkin spice ice cream during fall, swap out milk for almond milk during winter, or use strawberries instead of raspberries when they’re in season in summer. The only limits are those set by your imagination!
Step 2: Prepare the Ingredients
Once you’ve pulled your ice cream maker out of storage, get everything ready. Most homemade ice cream recipes require just a few simple ingredients: milk, sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract. Don’t forget salt!
Not only does it make a recipe taste great but it also prevents ice crystals from forming in your frozen treats. Also, make sure you have a freezer bowl that’s been pre-frozen overnight.
Step 3: Pour into the Device
Allow your ice cream mix to chill in your freezer for 30 minutes. Your freezer’s temperature should be set to 0 degrees Fahrenheit or below (but not rock-solid – otherwise, you might not get proper churning).
If you don’t have a thermometer, check after 30 minutes by sticking a finger in and feeling how firm it is. If it feels soft, stick it back into the freezer for 10-15 more minutes. Then give it another test.
Step 4: Let it Chill
Wait! You’re almost done, but before you can pour your ice cream into a bowl and devour it, you need to let it chill. The optimal temperature for soft-serve ice cream is -6oC (21oF), but don’t worry if your freezer can’t get quite that cold – if you want soft-serve consistency, aim for -12oC (10oF).
You could try letting it chill outside of your freezer overnight or in a very cool place inside your house; it won’t be perfectly creamy, but then again you didn’t pay hundreds of dollars for a fully automatic machine that makes soft serve…so there are tradeoffs.
Step 5: Serve
Of course, homemade ice cream isn’t hard once you get it going—and you’ll also find that a frozen treat is often more fun than one from your local scoop shop.
It’s also less expensive when you’re making several quarts at a time; consider freezing some in an ice cube tray and tossing into water or soda for instant summer cool-downs. There are lots of ways to use your ice cream maker; experiment and let us know what works for you!
Step 6: Wash and Store
Wash your hands after handling ice cream and dry them well. Wash all containers, bowls, spoons and other utensils that come in contact with ice cream as well. Put on a fresh pair of gloves for each batch you make.
Store any extra ice cream in containers within one layer of wrapping material in a freezer set at 0 degrees F or below. The goal is to keep air out so it doesn’t get too warm and melt. (If food sits at room temperature for more than two hours, bacteria can grow.) Cover tightly, label and date your container, then put it away immediately.
Step 7: Clean-up
Fill sink or bucket with water. Using warm water, rinse off your ice cream maker while it’s still in your kitchen sink or on your counter.
Dry thoroughly and put away until next time. Your ice cream maker is now ready for use! Before using for next batch of homemade ice cream, make sure you clean again as described above in step 1.
Step 8: Eat Up!
The most overlooked feature of using an ice maker is how it can make some delicious homemade treats. You can add any ingredients you want and you’ll end up having a fresh batch of ice cream in no time at all.
The best part about making your own ice cream is that you get to adjust the consistency, texture, and taste of it however you like. If that doesn’t sound tasty enough, there are a few recipes available on our website so be sure to check them out!
From chocolate peanut butter swirls, cherry cheesecake bites, peach cobbler-flavored ice cubes, or even cucumber and basil sorbet—you can have fun crafting your own customized popsicles!
Making homemade ice cream doesn’t have to be difficult, or messy. You just need a few tools and some patience. One of those tools is an ice cream maker like our Igloo 8-Quart Portable Cooler & Ice Maker. But you don’t have to use ours!
There are lots of models out there, including handheld models that work in a similar way. The important thing is that you have something you can use to make large batches of your favorite frozen treats whenever you want. Our portable cooler and ice maker even comes with recipes!