Cuisinart ICE-30BC Frozen Yogurt, Sorbet, & Ice Cream Maker – Full Review

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If you’re looking for an easy way to make homemade ice cream without using lots of ice and rock salt but you don’t want to shell out the cash for a self-freezing dessert maker, consider the Cuisinart ICE-30BC Pure Indulgence. This ice cream maker bridges the gap between the two extremes, saving labor and mess on your part while offering greater affordability than units with their own compressors built in. Now for the good stuff.

Like many popular home ice cream makers, the Cuisinart Pure Indulgence makes use of a freezer bowl that contains cooling liquid between two insulating walls. This bowl must be pre-frozen before you begin making your recipe, and the amount of time it takes to freeze depends totally on how cold your freezer is. The process can take more than 20 hours. I like to add convenience by simply storing the bowl inside the freezer anytime it’s not in use. This way it is always ready to go! Be sure to store it upright so that your dessert freezes evenly when you put the bowl to use.

During the ice cream-making process, a powerful motor turns a wide mixing arm that also aerates the ingredients inside the freezer bowl, creating smooth desserts and drinks. Rubber feet help keep the base in one place while the machine does its thing, and the clear lid lets you keep an eye on the process if you’re feeling so inclined. A wide spout at the top of the lid makes it easy to add mix-ins when it’s time.

The ICE-30BC ice cream maker provides about two quarts of dessert per cycle, which is about the same as the half-gallon containers found in stores. Depending on serving size, this is enough to treat around 16 friends or family members. Of course, most people like larger portions, and I find it gets four of us through two rounds of dessert!

Cleanup is just as easy as setup, thanks to the unit’s simple, straightforward design. Do remember to follow the manufacturer’s recommendation for washing and drying the bowl before putting it into the freezer. Wrapping it in plastic or storing it inside a zipper-type plastic bag will prevent it from acquiring any funny flavors if it’s being disused for a long period of time. Like the freezer bowls from similar ice cream makers, the one that comes with the Cuisinart Pure Indulgence can be used for chilling beverages or serving ice cubes when it’s not being utilized for making dessert!

These are just a few highlights. Read on for more details about the pros and cons that come with owning and operating the Cuisinart ICE-30BC Pure Indulgence Ice Cream Maker.



Attractive, Compact Design

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Cuisinart did an outstanding job designing this ice cream maker. Despite its ability to deliver a big, 2-quart batch of dessert, it features a footprint that’ just a little over 8 inches square. The entire unit is less than a foot tall, and unlike most of the ice cream makers I’ve seen, its power cord fits up inside the back, so it doesn’t dangle during storage and allowing for a nice neat appearance when the unit is left up on the countertop. If you have a small kitchen, or if you’re looking for a good option for using in the galley of your RV or boat, this is a fantastic choice!

Looks aren’t everything, but the Cuisinart ICE-30BC offers a handsome appearance that’s worth mentioning. The exterior has a modern, streamlined look, and the brushed stainless steel housing is right at home in a contemporary kitchen.


Quieter than Old-Fashioned Ice Cream Makers

If you have a low tolerance for noise, you may find the churning and scraping sounds that this ice cream maker emits to be somewhat grating. If, on the other hand, you don’t mind the mild racket that handy kitchen appliances make, you’ll find this one to be on the lower end of the noisemaking scale. It’s nowhere near as loud as a blender and a bit quieter than the old-style ice cream makers that clunk and clank as they rotate inside their beds of ice and salt.


Easy to Use

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The Cuisinart ICE-30BV is easy to use – in fact, it’s just about foolproof. Start out by stowing the insulated bowl inside your freezer, preferably in the back where the temperature is coldest. Be sure that your freezer is set to 0 degrees to ensure that the liquid inside the bowl freezes completely!

Next, make a recipe that yields two quarts of finished product and store it in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight. The colder it is when you begin the process, the faster the machine will be able to do its job. Putting your mixture into a bowl with a spout will help make it easy to pour.

The next step is to get everything ready to go. Once you’ve got your ingredients, the base, the mixer arm, and the lid set up, it’s time to get the bowl out of the freezer and put the machine together, following the simple instructions in the user’s manual. Hint: practice putting the ice cream maker together before you actually use it so that you’re familiar with the process. This will help you speed along once the freezer bowl is out in room temperature air.

Time is of the essence, because this freezer bowl, just like similar ones, will start to slowly thaw out the second it comes out into the warmer air inside your kitchen.

Once assembled and plugged in, turn the machine on. Next, pour the ingredients in through the spout while the ice cream maker is rotating. I made the mistake of filling the canister all the way to the top with chocolate ice cream mix. Do not do this! Follow the instructions and leave some space – about an inch or so – at the top of the canister, leaving some room for the dessert to expand as it freezes. If your recipe makes more than what the machine can handle at a single go, consider dividing it in two and making a second batch after the bowl has the opportunity to re-freeze. You can of course do a bit of arithmetic and cut your recipe in half so that the Pure Indulgence accommodates the entire thing.

Let the ice cream maker run for about 20 minutes before adding any mix-ins such as berries, chocolate chips, cookie chunks, etc. It helps to pre-freeze these so that they contribute more cold to the mixture! Allow about five more minutes for the recipe to blend, then stop the machine and start dishing up ice cream or transfer it immediately to a sealed plastic container to ripen in the freezer. While you may not feel like waiting, ripening will allow the flavors to mingle, adding even more deliciousness to your dessert.


Easy to Clean

The Cuisinart ICE-30BC is quick and easy to clean, but do read this section all the way to the end for a little warning! First off, the Pure Indulgence is just as easy to take apart as it is to set up. I wear an oven glove during disassembly to keep my hand from freezing while I use a spatula to scrape the ice cream out into a separate container. Once the transfer is complete, I pop the ice cream into the freezer while I clean up.

There are just four simple parts to this machine and all of them are easy to clean. The plastic lid and mixer arm can go into the dishwasher if you want, or you can wash them with soapy water. The freezer bowl cannot be machine washed! It has to be washed by hand. Now for the warning: Do not use a paper towel to dry it unless it’s completely thawed out, otherwise you’ll find yourself rinsing paper bits out of your bowl while muttering to yourself. As for the base, wipe up drips with a wet towel and then give it a quick polish with a paper towel and a bit of glass cleaner so it looks like new.


Makes A Wide Variety of Treats

I became interested in ice cream makers because I wanted total control over the recipes, and because I wanted to keep enjoying fantastic treats without paying top dollar for them at the supermarket. Along the way, I’ve discovered that many models, including this one, are suitable for making frozen yogurt, gelato, sherbet, custard, frozen drinks like margaritas and daiquiris, and of course, every kind of ice cream imaginable. Whether you prefer dairy milk and cream, cashew milk, almond milk, soymilk or coconut milk, you can use it to make delicious treats, either with or without sugar. The internet is a great source for exquisite recipes, but do give the ones inside the book that comes with the Cuisinart ICE-30BC a try, as they are marvelous! The Pure Indulgence is one ice cream maker that really does live up to its name.


Reasonable Price

The Cuisinart ICE-30BC Pure Indulgence is an inexpensive ice cream maker that offers reliable performance while paying for itself quickly. If you love ice cream, sorbet and other frozen treats and eat them often, you’ll ultimately find yourself paying just the cost of ingredients instead of shelling out mounds of cash to the local grocer or the corner ice cream shop. Best of all, the ice cream you make at home is exactly what you’re craving and it has only ingredients you want in it!




qm  “How long does the canister need to stay in the freezer before making ice cream?”

According to the manufacturer, the canister needs to stay in the freezer for somewhere between about 6 and 22 hours before making ice cream. Freezer temperatures of 0 and below will speed up the process.

qm  “Will this make good low-fat treats, or is it just for high-fat recipes with lots of cream, coconut cream, etc.? I’ve read some confusing things.”

Yes, it makes lovely low-fat and fat-free treats, but you have to be absolutely sure that everything that goes in is super cold before starting the freezing process. After ripening in the freezer, your finished product is likely to be firmer than low-fat goodies you buy at the store simply because they are not filled with additives!

qm  “Will the Pure Indulgence make smaller batches of ice cream or do you have to make a full 2 quarts at once?”

You’ll find that you enjoy great success with smaller batches of ice cream! Go ahead and make small batches of whatever treats you are craving at the moment.

qm  “Does the ice cream maker have to go into the freezer while it’s running or does it just sit on the counter?”

The inner bowl does need to go into the freezer before you start the blending process, but the remainder of the unit stays outside on your kitchen counter.

qm  “Is there a lid for storing the canister inside the freezer?”

No, you’ll need to transfer your dessert to an airtight container for storage inside the refrigerator. It would be nice if containers were included, but they’re sold separately.

qm  “About how big is this ice cream maker?”

The Cuisinart ICE-30BC is a little over 8 inches square on the bottom and around 11 inches tall. It’s comparable in size to a good old fashioned drip coffeemaker. The inner bowl is 6 ½ inches tall by 7 ¾ inches wide, so it fits in nearly any freezer.

qm  “Is the inside of the freezer bowl stainless steel or some other kind of metal?”

According to Cuisinart, the freezer bowl’s interior is made of aluminum that has been coated with Xylan, which is a fluoropolymer non-stick material. The mixing arm is made of plastic.

qm  “Does the machine stop on its own when the cycle is finished or do you have to set a timer?”

The machine does not stop automatically. You may have to set your timer twice – once at about the 20 to 25 minute mark for adding mix-ins, and a second time five minutes after that to let you know it’s time for dessert.




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The Cuisinart ICE-30BC Pure Indulgence is a wonderful ice cream maker that lets you create a wide array of frozen treats in your kitchen, minus messy salt and ice combinations old-fashioned ice cream makers call for. Easy to set up, use, and clean, it allows you to make your favorite flavors and try brand new ones for much less than you’d spend on treats from the store or ice cream shop. While this model has a surprisingly small footprint, it makes a full two quarts of deliciousness per cycle. The Pure Indulgence is an ice cream maker that really does live up to its name!

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