Although most nine-bullet ice makers are functionally the same, we’ve highlighted two models that offer a little extra convenience, and we have two new picks for clear-cube makers as well.
August 10, 2020
If you can’t get the ice you want from trays or store-bought bags, and a built-in machine (like the one in a fridge) won’t cut it, then you might want a portable ice maker. You can just buy whatever’s cheap or looks cool: The most compact and affordable models—which make nine bullet-shaped “cubes” at a time—are likely all the same basic machine made in the same factory, and they work pretty well.
We’re highlighting the Magic Chef MCIM22/HNIM27 in particular because it’s usually in stock for a reasonable price, at a retailer (Home Depot) that accepts in-person returns. (Shipment-based returns may not always be possible with ice makers.)
Just like any of these smallish portable models, the Magic Chef makes nine bullet-shaped ice cubes every eight minutes (though the exact speed depends on a few factors). Within a half-hour, you’ll have enough ice to chill a few drinks. The reservoir holds enough water to make ice continuously for a few hours at a time, so you won’t have to watch it too closely (though the bullets will melt if left in the unrefrigerated storage basket). Although the cloudy bullets aren’t exactly gourmet ice, they’ll get your drinks cold, and that’s good enough for most of us.
There’s evidence that most (if not all) bullet-style portable ice makers sold in the US are manufactured by a single company, Hicon. So pretty much any brand or model of nine-bullet ice maker will work fine, and most of the differences are aesthetic. The Igloo ICEB26HNBK is noteworthy because it’s one of the few variants in this size with a dedicated self-cleaning cycle (though we’re not actually sure how much that matters). Bigger sizes are also available, if you really need a lot of ice.
If you drink a lot of sodas or seltzers, or you just want better-looking ice, you could consider a waterfall-style, clear-cube ice maker like the Luma IM200SS or the NewAir Clear Ice 40. Clear ice cubes won’t make carbonated drinks fizz as much as cloudy ice does, so your bubbly beverages will taste better for longer. The main downside is that clear-cube makers are bigger and more expensive than the nine-bullet machines we’ve highlighted.
Why you should trust us
Since 2013, Liam McCabe has covered appliances for Wirecutter, including microwaves—another category that is semi-secretly dominated by a single manufacturer. Tyler Lynch covered appliances for Wirecutter for three years, including other cold appliances that use compressors.
We looked at more than 50 different models of ice maker for this guide and have tested seven of them since we began reviewing them in 2017. We also heard from representatives from a couple of ice-maker brands, including FirstBuild, NewAir, and Magic Chef. And to answer a question about drinks that get too fizzy, we got in touch with David Reguera, professor in the department of fundamental physics at the University of Barcelona.
Who should get this
If you can’t get ice the way you want it from the most common sources—such as the ice maker in a fridge, some other built-in machine, trays, or store-bought bags of ice stored somewhere cold—then it might be worth buying a portable ice maker.
Portables make a lot of sense in an RV, a camper, a boat, or even a food truck. But plenty of people find them useful in their homes to supplement (or even replace) the ice-making capabilities of their freezers.
One problem with portables is that they don’t seem to be very durable. We browsed user reviews for some of the best-selling models, and we found a not-insignificant number that said the ice makers arrived broken or stopped working properly after a few weeks or months. Portables all have one-year warranties, as far as we’re aware, and customer service at these brands can be hit or miss. We also found a few reviews written by people who claim to have owned several ice makers that each broke down after a couple years of regular use. And if you don’t do the basic maintenance (which can be a pain), portable ice makers can grow mildew, form mineral scales, or even get rusty.
If you’re planning to use an ice maker by the pool or in the bed of your truck on a hot day, it’s probably not going to work very well. They’re meant for indoor use, preferably at a comfortable room temperature of around 70 °F. The performance drops off quickly when it’s hotter than that, and most models’ manuals don’t recommend using ice makers at all in direct sunlight or above 90 °F.
It’s too dramatic to say that portable ice makers should be your last resort, because even the affordable models work well (until they break), and the higher-end ones can make nice ice that’s hard to get at home otherwise. It’s more like they’re an imperfect solution to a problem that most people don’t have.
How we picked and tested
We found more than 50 listings for portable ice makers from a couple dozen brands. But on closer inspection, there are only a handful of unique designs, built by just two manufacturers, as far as we can tell.
Since there’s relatively little competition in this category, and every option is both uniquely appealing and seriously flawed, this guide doesn’t really pinpoint the “best” model or even type of portable ice maker. But it does identify your options and their relative pros and cons.
The king of cheap ice makers seems to be Hicon. Only one brand (Magic Chef) would confirm that Hicon manufactures its machines. Curtis International (which sells Igloo and Frigidaire ice makers), Whynter, and Hicon itself did not reply to our request for comment. But it looks to us like Hicon does make models for Frigidaire, Igloo, and NewAir, and possibly for Whynter, Della, Costway, and other brands, too.
Some of the ice makers we’ve tested: GE Profile Opal, Della Premium, NewAir AI-215, Igloo ICE108, Igloo ICE103, Magic Chef MCIM22/HNIM27. Photo: Liam McCabe
Most portable ice makers are clones of the same smallish bullet-ice maker, manufactured by a company called Hicon. Photo: Liam McCabe
The most obvious clues are that the overwhelming majority of ice makers look alike and have similar specs.
We also checked public import records and found that many of the brands we listed had received shipments of ice makers from Hicon over the past year. Although some brands’ import records were unavailable, the machines they sell have nearly the same specs and a similar look as the ones from the confirmed Hicon customers.
The seller page for Hicon on Alibaba (a popular business-to-business marketplace) has dozens of listings for unbranded portable ice makers that are identical to the branded models that appear at retailers in the US.
And we found a promotional video made by Alibaba with footage from the Hicon factory, where several popular variants of these portable ice makers are being assembled or packaged, or just sitting on display.
Hicon makes a few different sizes of bullet-ice makers, plus a clear-cube maker, and a combination water-and-ice dispenser.
There are a handful of other companies that appear to manufacture portable bullet-ice makers, including Belly, Aquart, and Geshini. It’s possible that they supply certain brands, or at least certain models to some brands. But we couldn’t find any records that they’ve exported any ice makers to the US. Either way, most of these models have specs and designs similar to those built by Hicon.
The other notable manufacturer is FirstBuild, which is a subsidiary of GE Appliances (itself a subsidiary of Haier). It builds upscale, specialty-ice machines, now sometimes sold under the GE Profile brand.
The most valuable testing we did for this guide was just using each machine at home for a few days, icing up our drinks with their cubes, and draining and drying the machines at the end of the day.
We also did some timed head-to-head testing, and we measured the surface temperature of the ice at points, too, but neither had much influence on our recommendations. Any spec that was alike or different on paper was predictably alike or different in the real world, and any tiny performance variations we measured among similar models are inconsequential.
Our pick: Magic Chef MCIM22/HNIM27 (or any other nine-bullet model)
If you’re looking for a portable ice maker that makes a lot of ice quickly, doesn’t cost too much, and isn’t too big, pick from one of the dozens of variants of the smallish, nine-bullet models that are probably manufactured by the same company, Hicon. There are hardly any important differences among these machines (with a few exceptions), so you can pick whatever is cheap and available and suits your tastes.
We’re highlighting the Magic Chef MCIM22/HNIM27 here because it tends to be one of the most affordable models that’s consistently in stock. And since it’s sold through Home Depot, in-store returns should be easy (a few owners of various models have written that retailers either refused or slow-rolled returns via shipment, though these instances seem to be uncommon).
The most common type of portable ice maker produces cloudy, bullet-shaped ice. Photo: Michael Hession
The controls for the Magic Chef—and for many similar nine-bullet ice makers—are super-simple, though some models include a self-cleaning mode. Photo: Michael Hession
Most portable ice makers don’t use water lines, so you’ll fill the reservoir manually. Photo: Liam McCabe
All the nine-bullet models are roughly the same size, taking up about half as much counter space as a small microwave oven. They’re louder than a fridge but quieter than an air conditioner, so you won’t have to raise your voice while they’re running. They do sometimes crackle and thump when freshly made ice falls off of the freezing rods and into the ice basket.
Each batch of ice is enough to fill more than a third (but less than a half) of a pint-size glass. That’s enough to cool a drink pretty quickly.
At a room temperature of around 70 °F, nine-bullet ice makers can be expected to crank out a batch of bullets roughly every seven to nine minutes. The speed per batch depends on the cube size (most models have two options, though the diameter differs by only a few millimeters), the model’s capacity (measured in pounds of ice per day in the best-case scenario—usually 26 or 28 pounds, so it’s a small difference), and how long the machine has been running (the first batch is a bit slow, and we also noticed that the machines tend to slow down a bit after they’ve been running for an hour or more).
For example, we found that the Magic Chef (a 27-pounds-per-day model) made batches of large bullets roughly every eight minutes at room temperature, using cold water from the tap. Pre-chilled water can speed that up a bit, and a warmer room slows it down. At a balmy 80 °F, it took about 12 minutes per batch, and the first few batches were composed of cubes that were not fully formed.
If the ice makers we’ve highlighted so far are sold out, or if the price seems unusually high on the day you want to buy one, you can choose any other nine-bullet model with a 26- or 28-pound maximum daily output and expect a similar experience. Some of these models have aesthetic differences, like the shape of the lid, window size, control panel layout, and finish, but nothing that impacts the performance or user experience enough to be noticeable. It’s the same basic machine wrapped up in a slightly different package. There is nothing particularly better or worse about our “picks” than the myriad clones from brands like Frigidaire, Whynter, NewAir, Della, or Costway, among at least a dozen others that come and go.
Flaws but not dealbreakers
We summed up most of the general problems with portable ice makers earlier in the guide. But one unique complaint about bullet-ice makers is that the ice is more cloudy than some people prefer. It’s true that bullet ice is not very photogenic. Carbonated drinks fizz more and go flat faster with cloudy ice. And it also melts pretty quickly for its size, compared with clearer ice. If those are dealbreakers, you’ll want a different type of ice maker. But if ice is all the same to you as long as it gets your drinks cold, the bullets will do just fine.
It’s also worth pointing out that owner ratings for nine-bullet ice makers are pretty low in general. At Home Depot, for example, a great small appliance (like this Shark vacuum) can often carry an average rating of 4.6 stars or higher. But the highest-rated portable ice makers are lucky to earn 4.2 stars, and many models earn less than 4 stars.
But we wouldn’t put too much stock in models that have above-average ratings, particularly at Amazon. Fraudulent reviews have become prevalent there. When we first published this guide in 2017, it was hard to find an ice maker with an average rating better than 3.8 stars. Today, with no actual improvements to the products and no important differences between models, it’s common to find ratings of 4.3 stars. That’s pretty suspicious.
For our part, we’ve tried to highlight models without many out-of-the-ordinary complaints in the user reviews.
What about bigger bullet-ice makers?
A few other styles of bullet-ice machines are also available in the US.
One variant, probably made by Hicon, can crank out about twice as much ice per day because it makes 12 ice bullets per batch and has faster-working compressors than the nine-bullet models. We tested one of these models, the NewAir AI-215 (which is pretty similar to the Della Stainless Steel Ice Maker 48 lb and the Whynter IMC-490SS, among several others). It performed a lot like the nine-bullet models and is a bit easier to clean, because the crevices throughout the machine aren’t as tight.
The downside to the 12-bullet machines is that they’re too big to store on most countertops. They’re also pretty heavy (about 40 pounds), though they do have built-in handles that make them easier to move. Some slower (usually 28 pounds of ice per day) 12-bullet models are also available, but we’re hard pressed to think of a reason to buy one in place of a nine-bullet model that has the same ice-making capacity.
For most people, these big machines are probably overkill. But if you’ve got your eye on one, don’t let us talk you out of it—they work fine. A few models can even hook up directly to a water line (so you don’t need to manually refill the reservoir), and they will continue to make ice as long as the ice basket isn’t full.
There are also a handful of better-looking, faster-working variants of the nine-bullet design, like the Igloo ICEB33SL and the NewAir AI-250W. But owner reviews suggest that some of these, particularly the ones that claim to make 33 pounds of ice per day, suffer from early breakdowns much more often than the “regular” nine-bullet models (with 26 or 28 pounds of ice-making capacity) that we’ve recommended do. We’re not sure why. The aesthetics of these alternative nine-bullet models are also slightly different, and we’re not certain that they’re actually made by Hicon.
Also great: Clear-ice machines
If cloudy-looking, fizz-depleting bullets won’t cut it, your best (only?) option is a clear-cube ice maker like the Luma Comfort IM200SS, which we tested and liked. Once again, we’re pretty sure that all models in this style sold in the US are made by the same manufacturer (Hicon, though nobody has confirmed that for us) and are very similar to one another, so just pick whatever is available. Many of them, including the NewAir Clear Ice 40, work faster than the Luma, though they tend to cost more as well.
If you drink a lot of soda or seltzer, clear ice will help your drinks taste better for longer because it doesn’t cause as much fizzing. The effect was plainly obvious in a side-by-side test: Soda fizzed much less in a glass filled with the Luma’s clear cubes than it did in one filled with the Magic Chef’s cloudy bullets. The Luma drink tasted bubbly and sharp, while the Magic Chef drink immediately tasted flat (and, without the effervescence to balance out the sugar, sickly sweet).
Clear ice causes less fizzing than cloudy ice because it’s smoother and therefore has fewer nucleation sites (crevices from air pockets, in this context) where bubbles can form, according to David Reguera, a professor in the department of fundamental physics at the University of Barcelona. The upshot is that drinks won’t go flat as quickly.
As the professor puts it: “A rough ice surface facilitates the heterogeneous nucleation of bubbles of dissolved CO₂. Hence, smooth, crystalline ice without air inclusions will produce less bubbles.”
Of course, clear ice also looks better than cloudy ice. That’s a fine reason to opt for something like the Luma, even if you’re not too thirsty for a bubbly drink.
Even though it’s true in general that clear ice melts more slowly than cloudy ice, that’s irrelevant in the context of portable ice makers because, among the models we tested, the clear-cube makers produce smaller cubes than the ice made by the bullet makers. We found that the Luma’s small-ish clear cubes melted a bit faster than the Magic Chef’s cloudy-but-larger bullets, both sitting in a dry bucket and in a glass of soda.
The Luma (and models like it) can reliably make clear ice because the cubes form slowly, with running water, to prevent air pockets from forming. In our testing, we never got a batch of cloudy ice. And of all the complaints we read about this type of ice maker, cloudy ice was not among them.
The main downside to clear-cube makers like the Luma is that they take longer to make a batch of ice. The Luma usually took 20 to 25 minutes to complete each batch of ice at regular room temperature, and more like 30 minutes in warmer temps. That said, it also makes about three times as much ice per batch, so it works out to be roughly equivalent over time. Plenty of other waterfall-style models claim to work about 40% faster, too.
Although the clear-cube models aren’t as enormous as the 12-bullet machines, they’re still bigger than the nine-bullet models, and it might not be practical to store them on a countertop.
In owner reviews, the most common complaint about the Luma and other clear-cube makers was that the ice comes out in a big solid block. This is basically true, though in our experience the “seams” between the cubes were always easy to break just by jabbing at the block with the plastic scoop that comes with the machine, or picking up the block and dropping it into the basket from 6 inches up.
One possible point of confusion: The so-simple-it’s-bad control panel on the Luma has a “hidden” setting that increases the thickness of the cubes if you hold down the power button for 5 seconds. There’s no cue on the control panel itself that this mode exists, nor is there any indication that you may have activated this setting. The manual recommends using this mode if you’ll be using the ice maker in warmer temperatures (above standard room temp, basically) to ensure that the ice forms completely. But if you turn this setting on and use it in an air-conditioned den or whatever, the block might come out with seams that are too thick to easily break.
If the models we’ve highlighted are out of stock or suspiciously expensive, plenty of clones are available, including models sold by Euhomy and Sentern.
There’s also a slight variation of this design, with a clear reservoir on the front of the machine that looks pretty cool. The Frigidaire EFIC229-VCM is one example of this style. It seems different enough that we’re hesitant to recommend it without testing, especially because the average ratings seem to be lower than those for the “traditional” design.
What about the Opal Nugget Ice Maker?
The GE Profile Opal is the most prominent countertop ice maker that makes nugget ice, sometimes known as pebble ice or “that ice you get at Sonic.” (As we were getting ready to publish this guide, we found a brand-new nugget-ice maker sold by NewAir, which we’ll look into at a future date.) We tried one and found that the Opal is a sturdy machine that works as advertised, and that the ice has a wonderfully fluffy texture. You’ll have to decide for yourself whether it’s worth spending this much money to have nugget ice on demand.
Essentially, nugget ice is a bunch of flaked ice (the type used in seafood displays) packed together. It has a soft, easy-to-chew texture, and it absorbs the flavor of whatever drink you’ve put it into. It’s particularly excellent for slushies and warm-weather cocktails, though it will make carbonated drinks go flat pretty quickly.
Nugget ice is challenging to make, so it’s no surprise that the Opal is the slowest ice maker we tested. It’s about half as fast as the slowest bullet or clear-cube models.
It’s not immune to problems, either, despite its high price. Several Amazon reviews claim that the machine can start making a high-pitched squeal after a few months of use. The Opal also hasn’t been available long enough to get an accurate sense of its long-term durability.
Other portable ice makers
Care and maintenance
It’s a good idea to clean your ice maker from time to time.
The smartest thing you can do is drain any leftover water out of the machine once you’re done using it, to prevent mildew from growing inside the damp, dark, warm, stagnant interior. Most models have a drain plug on the bottom or side of the body.
Every ice maker manual we’ve read recommends wiping down the interior of the machine (except the evaporator rods) with a soft cloth, warm water, and diluted dish soap. This will get rid of solid debris, mildew, and maybe some mineral scaling.
A few models have dedicated self-cleaning cycles that you can use with a diluted cleaning solution (such as vinegar, lemon, or a pre-made, nickel-safe ice-maker cleaner) to descale the machine (the evaporator rods or grids seem like they’d benefit from this). You can even use bleach, to sanitize the interior. Other models recommend running a regular ice-making cycle with a diluted vinegar solution, instead of water, for descaling, but they don’t mention whether other solutions are okay. Many other models, despite being functionally identical products, offer no guidance at all on automatic cleaning cycles or cleaning solutions. No brands responded to our request for clarification on this point.
After any sort of cleaning, it’s wise to run a few water-only ice-making cycles, to rinse away any residue—and discard the ice, of course.
About your guides
Liam McCabe is a senior staff writer for Wirecutter, and has covered the wild world of appliances since 2011. After testing dozens of robot vacuums, he is neither worried about AI nor holding his breath for self-driving cars. He enjoys visiting factories and learning about regulatory loopholes, and has flooded our testing area only three times.
The Best Ice Cream Maker
by Anna Perling, Marguerite Preston, and Lesley Stockton
Most ice cream makers make decent ice cream. Our picks make consistently creamy frozen desserts and are easier to use, clean, and store than the competition.
A countertop ice maker can yield up to two pounds of ice, making it a convenient option for those who want frequent access to large batches of ice. Here are the best countertop ice makers for your home.
If you’re in the mood for a delicious blended beverage, check out our best smoothie makers.
1. Igloo ICEB26BK Automatic Ice MakerPros:
- Holds up to 26 pounds of ice at once
- Choose between small and large sizes
- One batch is done in just seven minutes
- No medium size option
- A bit loud
- Ice melts after it's made
This Igloo ice maker holds up to 26 pounds of ice and has a three-quart water tank capacity. The ice basket holds up to two pounds of ice at a time. You can choose between small and large ice cube sizes, which makes it one of the best countertop ice makers for serving a variety of beverages, including mixed drinks.
A simple but efficient control panel puts the essentials at your fingertips. For example, you can select ice cube sizes and turn the machine on and off. Indicator lights let you know when to add water, and when the ice is full.
Even if you’re in a rush, you can make a single batch of ice in just seven minutes. If you prefer to keep track of your ice as it’s being made, simply monitor the progress via the transparent lid.
Find more Igloo ICEB26BK Automatic Ice Maker information and reviews here.
2. Best Nugget Ice Maker: GE Profile Opal CountertopPros:
- Nuggets are great for cocktails, sodas and other beverages
- Automatically powers on when ice supply runs low
- Softer cubes make delicious snacks
- May be too tall to fit underneath some cabinets
- Limited one-year factory warranty
- Not the quietest operation
Built-in Bluetooth connectivity allows you to schedule a fresh batch of ice using your smartphone as well as monitor the status of your GE Profile Opal and order accessories as needed. The nugget ice is ideal for your favorite drinks, including sodas, cocktails and more. The cubes are also softer than your average hard ice cube, which makes them easier to chew and snack on.
Once the machine starts cranking, you can expect about a pound of ice per hour (up to 24 pounds if you leave the machine running). Overall, the machine can hold up to three pounds of ice. It also comes with a side tank that you can easily attach if you want more ice.
If you’re looking for a quick batch, you can enjoy fresh ice cubes in less than 20 minutes. The Opal knows you’ll never want to run out of fresh ice, and automatically powers on when the supply gets too low.
This countertop ice maker fits nicely on most counters and works with any electric outlet.
Find more GE Profile Opal Countertop Nugget Ice Maker information and reviews here.
3. Euhomy Ice MakerPros:
- Includes a scoop and removable basket
- User-friendly indicator lights
- Makes a small batch in just eight minutes
- Doesn't have a self-clean function
- Ice tends to melt quickly
- A bit noisy
Prepare your favorite drinks quickly and easily with the Euhomy Ice Maker, which churns out several ice cubes in just eight minutes. You can also wait 24 hours to make 26 pounds of ice. An efficient compressor yields bullet-style cubes for cocktails, food, refreshing smoothies and more.
The ice maker comes with a scoop and basket so you can quickly get started. It’s also equipped with user-friendly light indicators that tell you when it’s time to add more water, when the ice bucket is full and your selected cube size.
A transparent window lets you keep tabs on the ice as it’s being made. You can opt for small or large ice cubes to make your favorite mixed drinks, fill a cooler or simply have some cold chips to snack on.
This small ice maker is compact enough for your boat, RV, kitchen counter and more. It also catches the eye with its modern stainless steel exterior.
Find more Euhomy Ice Maker information and reviews here.
4. Best Self-Cleaning Ice Maker: Igloo ICEB26HNSSPros:
- Produces 26 pounds of ice within a 24-hour period
- Makes up to nine small or large ice cubes in just seven minutes
- A 1.25-pound ice basket will keep the ice cold until you're ready
- Cubes can get stuck together in the freezer compartment
- Some say the ice is a bit wet
- Slightly loud
An automatic cleaning cycle makes this countertop Igloo ice maker a more hygienic solution for your kitchen. The ice maker has a 26-pound capacity as long as you keep its two-quart water tank full.
Whether you’re gearing up for a tailgating party or you just want to make a large batch of ice at once, the appliance produces 26 pounds of ice within a 24-hour period. A quicker option is to make up to nine small or large ice cubes in just seven minutes. If you’re not quite ready to use the cubes, a 1.25-pound ice basket will keep the ice nice and cold.
LED lights make the entire experience more intuitive and user-friendly by alerting when the ice basket is full, when you need to add water and to indicate the size of the ice cubes. This countertop ice maker can be used outdoors and indoors and comes with a convenient carrying handle.
Find more Igloo Self-Cleaning Countertop Ice Maker information and reviews here.
5. Quietest Countertop Ice Maker: IKICH Portable Ice MakerPros:
- Choice between small or large cubes
- Bullet-shaped cubes stick together without melting
- Produces a batch in just six minutes
- May take a cycle or two for cubes to reach desired consistency
- No medium size available
- Ice melts fairly quickly
Avoid disturbing others with this IKICH portable ice maker, which doesn’t go over 45 decibels per cycle. Even when the machine is working hard, you’ll barely notice it running in the background.
Plans can change at the last minute, but this small kitchen appliance has you covered by producing ice cubes in just six minutes. And if you can wait a bit longer, the countertop ice maker yields up to 26 pounds of cubes in 24 hours. A generous 68-ounce water reservoir helps the process along.
This ice maker works hard but produces a minimal amount of noise, so you can use it without disturbing others. It’s also equipped with a user-friendly control panel so you can choose when to run the machine as well as your preferred ice cube size. Whether you select the small or large size, the cubes are bullet-shaped and are designed to stick together without melting.
Indicator lights keep you informed by letting you know when the ice is done or if you need to add more water. This small ice maker has a two-liter capacity and comes with a two-year warranty.
Find more IKICH Portable Ice Maker information and reviews here.
6. Deco Chef Daily Production Clear Ice MakerPros:
- Removable ice tray makes it easy to transfer batches
- Selectable cube sizes for various drinks
- Stores up to 1.5-pounds of ice
- Full tray indicator sensor can frost over
- Relatively loud
- Not recommended for outdoor use
Make up to 26 pounds of ice per day with this Deco Chef compact ice machine. Equipped with a large 1.8-liter water reservoir, this handy appliance churns out roughly nine cubes per batch. If you’re craving a quick cocktail or need some ice for guests, each batch is ready in just six minutes.
Simply plug in the appliance, add water and choose which size cubes you want to make. A clear window lets you check on the batch at any time. You can monitor settings and make adjustments with the user-friendly display panel.
Each cube is shaped like a bullet, which is ideal for mixed drinks. These hollow ice cubes also melt evenly and will quickly chill your favorite beverages. Indicator lights let you know when it’s time to add water or empty the bin. There’s also automatic overfill protection for your safety.
Portable ice makers aren’t exactly stylish, but the Deco Chef puts a fun spin on a relatively dull task by brightening up your living space with an assortment of fun colors. It stands just over 9.5 inches high and 14 inches wide and fits in small spaces such as an RV, boat or cramped kitchen.
Find more Deco Chef Daily Production Clear Ice Maker information and reviews here.
7. VIVOHOME Countertop Ice Cube MakerPros:
- Safety features include automatic overflow protection and an indicator alert
- Makes smaller batches in 10 minutes or less
- Produces 26 pounds of ice cubes in 24 hours
- Quite load when dropping cubes into the bucket
- Ice cubes are on the wetter side
- Doesn't keep ice cubes frozen for long
Brighten up your living space with the colorful VIVOHOME ice machine. You can use this compact machine just about anywhere, including your RV, boat, bar and more. To get started, simply plug the machine in and add enough water to produce your desired amount of cubes.
While the ice maker cranks out up to 26 pounds of cubes in 24 hours, it also yields smaller batches in just six to 10 minutes. The bullet-shaped cubes are a convenient design for adding to water bottles, mixed drinks and more. A transparent window in the lid lets you check on the ice-making process without disruption.
Safety features include automatic overflow protection and an indicator alert once the ice bucket is full. You’ll also get an alert and a red indicator light when it’s time to add more water.
Find more VIVOHOME Countertop Ice Cube Maker information and reviews here.
8. COSTWAY Countertop Ice MakerPros:
- Choice between small and large cubes
- Produces up to 26.5 pounds of ice each day
- Has a 2.2-liter water tank
- No self-cleaning feature
- Ice cubes are on the wetter side
- A bit loud
Enjoy long-lasting performance with this COSTWAY Countertop Ice Maker with a corrosion-resistant condenser. It’s also eco-friendly with its 1.5 pounds of storage and a 2.2-liter water tank. Convenient heat dissipation allows the machine to operate as efficiently as possible, whether it’s producing up to 26.5 pounds of ice each day or making a batch of nine ice cubes in just six minutes.
A user-friendly control panel with LED lights indicates when it’s time to add water or empty the ice bin. You can also select whether you want to make small or large cubes. These ice cubes feature a hollow design that works especially well for snacking and cooling down beverages.
Find more COSTWAY Countertop Ice Maker information and reviews here.
9. hOmeLabs Chill Pill Countertop Ice MakerPros:
- Makes two different cube sizes
- Takes just six to eight minutes per batch
- Makes up to 26 pounds of ice in a day
- No option for large ice cubes
- A bit loud
- Some ice cubes come out wet
The hOmeLabs Portable Ice Maker measures 9.5 x 12.9 x 14 inches, making it a solid choice if you’re looking for a portable ice maker that will fit on your kitchen counter. There’s enough storage space to hold up to 1.5 pounds of ice. The machine also lets you choose between small or medium sizes.
In terms of speed, the machine makes approximately 26 pounds of ice each day. You can expect small and medium batches of ice cubes to be ready in just six to eight minutes. It’s also ETL Certified, which means this portable ice maker complies with North American safety standards.
Find more hOmeLabs Chill Pill Countertop Ice Maker information and reviews here.
10. NewAir Portable Ice MakerPros:
- Only requires a foot of countertop space
- Dispenses up to 33 pounds of ice each day
- Freezes ice cubes in only eight minutes per cycle
- Ice melts pretty fast
- Bin is on the small side
- Fairly loud
Upgrade your countertops or kitchen island with the NewAir Portable Ice Maker for any occasion. Despite its compact size, this countertop ice maker dispenses up to 33 pounds of ice each day. It also freezes the ice cubes in just eight minutes per cycle, so you don’t have to worry about waiting around to use the ice.
Alerts such as low water and a full ice bin keep the process going smoothly. You can also choose between small and large ice cubes, both of which have a hole in the middle.
This countertop ice maker doesn’t require any installation and only requires about a foot of your countertop space. The appliance comes with a scoop and ice basket. While its modern stainless steel exterior gives this ice maker an upscale appearance, it’s also available in black or white.
Find more NewAir Portable Ice Maker information and reviews here.
11. Tavata Antartic Star Countertop Ice MakerPros:
- Produces nine bullet ice cubes in eight minutes
- Makes up to 26 pounds of ice in 24 hours
- Choice bewteen small and large ice cubes
- Ice melts quickly
- A bit loud when dropping ice into the basket
- Some dislike how the cubes are hollow in the middle
Cleaning out your countertop ice maker probably isn’t high on your list of priorities, which is where the Tavata Antartic Star machine’s smart cleaning function comes in handy. Instead of using a sponge or rag to clean out scaly deposits left behind by hard water, all you need is a little bit of water and the small ice maker will take over from there.
The ice maker yields up to 26 pounds of ice in 24 hours or nine bullet ice cubes in eight minutes or less if you need ice quickly. LED lights let you need when you need to add water or when the bin is full. You’ll also be able to choose between small and large ice cubes.
There’s even a power indicator light to let you know that the appliance is on and working properly. Other features include a see-through window to watch the ice making process and low power consumption for maximum efficiency.
Find more Tavata Antartic Star Countertop Ice Maker information and reviews here.
12. Crownful Ice Maker MachinePros:
- User-friendly operation for beginners
- Produces up to nine cubes in less than 10 minutes
- Ice bucket holds up to 80 ice cubes
- Water bucket isn't removable
- A little noisy
- Ice cubes melt quickly
A quiet cooling system ensures the CROWNFUL Ice Maker will hum along in the background without disturbing the party. As with many other small ice makers in this price range, you can expect up to nine pieces of ice in less than 10 minutes or a full 26 pounds of ice cubes in 24 hours.
The removable ice bucket holds up to 80 ice cubes, which is plenty for an indoor bar, pool party or larger gatherings. A user-friendly one-button operation means you can get started right away, even if this is your first time using an ice maker. An ice scoop is included.
Find more Crownful Ice Maker Machine information and reviews here.
13. NutriChef Digital Ice Maker MachinePros:
- Makes up to 33 pounds of ice each day
- Can make a smaller batch in 10 minutes or less
- Stain-resistant stainless steel exterior
- A bit noisy
- Ice melts quickly
- Some find the setup confusing
A 2.2-liter capacity means you can keep refilling the ice buckets for your pool party, a day on the boat and other adventures. Despite its compact size this NutriChef digital ice cube maker churns out 33 pounds of ice each day and can deliver a small batch in just 10 minutes.
A choice between small, medium and large ice cube sizes gives you more flexibility when making your favorite drinks, restocking coolers and more. LED lights alert when it’s time to refill the water or empty the ice tray. There’s also a see-through window to track the ice as it’s made.
Easy-touch buttons make this appliance a user-friendly choice. Not only does its stainless steel exterior make this countertop ice maker a modern addition to your home, it’s also stain-resistant for added convenience.
Find more NutriChef Digital Ice Maker Machine information and reviews here.
14. Merax Portable Ice MakerPros:
- Stores nearly 2.5 pounds of ice
- Equipped with a 2.2-liter water tank
- One batch takes around 15 minutes
- Ice cubes sometimes come out in clusters
- Some competitors make a batch in less time
- Doesn't have a freezer compartment to keep ice cold after making a batch
The Merax Portable Ice Maker measures 11.2 x 14.4 x 13.8 inches. If you’re looking for a portable ice maker that will churn out clear ice cubes that not only take longer to melt than other types of ice cubes but won’t water down your beverages, consider this ice maker.
You can expect a wait time of approximately 15 minutes for a single batch. There’s enough room to store up to 2.4 pounds of ice. Choose between small, medium and large sizes depending on your needs. This ice maker has a 2.2-liter water tank along with a user-friendly digital control panel.
Find more Merax Portable Ice Maker information and reviews here.
15. Arctic Pro Portable Digital Ice MakerPros:
- Makes a quick batch in eight minutes
- Powerful compressor helps produce 26 pounds of ice each day
- Sensors keep the ice from overflowing
- A bit noisy
- Ice cube tray isn't that big
- Large ice cubes could be bigger
An easily visible LCD control panel is a step up from the LED indicator lights found on many other small ice makers in this price range. The display on the Arctic Pro Portable Digital Ice Maker allows you to check on the ice-making process via the timer, turn the machine on and off, select whether you want to make small or large ice cubes and control the cleaning functions.
A see-through window lets you check on the ice as it’s being made. Sensors prevent the ice from overflowing. As with most portable ice makers in this price range, this machine cranks out up to 26 pounds of ice per day, thanks in part to its powerful compressor. However, it also churns out a smaller amount in just six to eight minutes.
Its compact size makes this home ice maker a great choice for pool parties, tailgating, bars, kitchens and other settings. The ice maker comes with a small scoop and ice basket.
Find more Arctic Pro Portable Digital Ice Maker information and reviews here.
16. Prime Home Portable Ice MachinePros:
- Can reuse ice water to make another batch
- Produces up to 26 pounds of ice within 24 hours
- Makes a quick batch in eight minutes
- Doesn't have an automatic clean cycle
- Can be tricky to get the ice cubes out of the tray
- A few complaints of an initial plastic taste
The Prime Home Portable Ice Machine yields fresh cubes in just eight minutes, making it a great choice for those last-minute pool parties and cold drink cravings. If you don’t need the ice right away, the machine produces 26 pounds of ice within 24 hours. Each bullet-shaped piece fits smaller water bottles and mixed drinks.
Not only is this small ice maker portable, it doesn’t require a water hookup and can be used outdoors and inside. For maximum safety, the ice maker prevents overflow and automatically shuts off once the ice basket is at full capacity. You’ll also get an alert if you need to add more water.
The 2.2-liter water reservoir is conveniently located underneath the ice basket, so you can simply reuse the ice water when it’s time to make a new batch. A plastic scoop is included, along with a removable ice bucket. A timeless stainless steel exterior makes this countertop ice machine as attractive as possible.
Find more Prime Home Portable Ice Machine information and reviews here.
17. FirstBuild Opal Nugget Ice MakerPros:
- Makes chewable ice cubes
- Bluetooth technology
- Ice scoop included
- Only makes one size
- A bit heavy
- Some competitors take less time to make ice
The FirstBuild Opal Nugget Ice Maker makes those crunchy and chewy ice nuggets that are just as satisfying on their own as they are in your favorite beverages. The portable ice maker yields up to a pound of ice in just one hour, or as much as 24 pounds of ice in a day. The reservoir has a 2.5-quart capacity, while there is room to store up three pounds of ice at a time. The machine has an operating temperature range of 55 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
Instead of freezing water to make a hard ice cube, Opal scrapes flakes of ice from a chilled stainless steel cylinder then extrudes and compacts them to make unique nuggets. If you prefer to use filtered water, you can install a separate NSF/ANSI 42 filter to eliminate unwanted odors, tastes, or chlorine. Bluetooth technology allows you to schedule ice making when it’s most convenient.
Find more FirstBuild Opal Nugget Ice Maker information and reviews here.
Which Is the Best Countertop Ice Maker?
Ice makers can be a convenient choice for your home if you're looking for a portable machine that can have ice cubes at the ready when you need them. Not all ice machines are the same, though, which is why we've rounded up the top picks for your home.
Some countertop ice makers are fast and efficient. Such machines produce limited amounts of ice at a single time and are ideal if you need to grab a few ice cubes occasionally for a drink. Other nugget ice makers produce larger batches of ice and can store more ice cubes at a time.
How quickly the ice is produced is another reason to choose one ice maker over another. Some countertop ice makers yield a smaller batch in less than 10 minutes. You can generally expect to wait up to a day for larger quantities of ice to be produced.
A countertop ice maker also comes in handy for making your own ice cream at home. While chocolate, vanilla and cookies and cream stand out as the most popular flavors in America, according to the International Dairy Foods Association, you can use your ice maker to make just about any flavor.
Which Portable Ice Maker Is Right for Me?
Whether you're looking for an extra ice machine to have around the home or you enjoy having fresh ice for indoor or outdoor gatherings, a nugget ice maker is a practical choice. Most countertop ice makers are small enough to fit on your countertop yet are large enough to crank out up to 26 pounds of ice per day, or near 10 ice cubes in 10 minutes or less if you need a quick batch.
According to the Universal Appliance and Kitchen Center, one of the greatest advantages of a portable ice maker is its overall versatility. Even a small ice maker usually gives you a choice between various cube sizes, so you can select the best fit for your cocktail, water bottle and more. The best countertop ice makers also provide a consistent flow of ice throughout the day so you won't have to worry about running out when you really need the ice.
Is a Small Countertop Ice Maker Right for Me?
Nugget ice cubes tend to melt slower than other types of ice cubes, making them especially useful for cooling your favorite drinks without the foam. The cubes are also quite soft and easy to chew, which means you can keep a stash lying around for snacking or cooling off on those hot summer days. Nugget ice cubes work especially well for mixed drinks, fountain beverages and specialty soft drinks to stash in your mini-fridge.
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What is reddit's opinion of Opal Countertop Nugget Ice Maker? From 3.5 billion comments As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. The following content includes affiliate links for which I may make a small commission at no extra cost to you should you make a purchase.
Man, CNET has just become trash. Autoplaying video with sound, ads everywhere, and a shitty 'scroll the page up and down to move a tiny window you can see the header image through' design? Ugh.
You know what? Fuck it. Article content with links to CNET removed and Amazon links replaced with non-tracking ones:
>Sonic ice fans listen up, there's a sweet deal headed your way.
>The price of the Firstbuild Opal Nugget Ice will drop $100 on July 16. The portable home ice maker will be one of over 1 million items discounted during Amazon's annual Prime Day promotion.
>Shaving $100 off of the Opal Nugget Ice's $499 list price may not sound earth shattering. But if you're a devotee of this particular frozen confection it'll be welcome news. Crunchy yet soft and easy to chew, nugget ice (also known as pellet ice) is tough to find. It's typically served up by fast food chains such as Sonic, Zaxby's, and Chick Fil A. Gas station franchise Thortons also sells bags of the stuff.
>[picture album that is less useful than the Amazon pictures]
>These outfits all either produce their ice in house or rely on their own network of distributors. And before the Opal, the only way to make nugget ice at home was to buy a pricey high-end appliance or a commercial machine for thousands a pop. So a further slash in price for the Opal is bound to make it even more tempting to pellet ice addicts.
>As all Amazon Prime Day specials, however, this deal won't last long. It should stick around for 36 hours before expiring or until inventory melts away.
Best ice makers according to redditors
Like many of my brothers in this sub, I'm always thirsty and always want water. In particular, I want it ice cold and in massive quantities. A while ago, I got this refillable 100z "cup":
Pic with pint glass for size comparison
I lived near a gas station with really well filtered water that let me fill it up for free, so I was set. Unfortunately, after moving, all the places near me want like $1 for an ice water refill in that thing. Fuck that. Here's an overview of all the components needed.
Pitcher - I use this Brita pitcher. In the past I used the bigger one here, but it honestly sucks to fill up because it's heavy and unwieldy, whereas the pitcher form factor is really easy to just refill right after you use. It also pours quite a bit slower. Apparently my new place does some filtration of water before it comes out of the sink, so I might switch to this guy for instant filtration. Also make sure to change that damn filter often enough. Having charcoal leech into everything when it breaks down from too much use won't hurt you but it definitely looks bad and takes some time to clean out.
Giant Cup - Valero Corner Stores sell this, though the 64oz and 52oz variants are more common. Plenty of other gas stations sell identical 100oz cups with their branding, but you just have to find one. If you don't mind paying the pretty steep cost (~$20) some people sell them on Amazon, like this one. I really really wish Yeti or some other company made a 100oz cup made for drinking that insulates as well as theirs do, but I haven't found one.
Reusable Straw - The big cup comes with a plastic reusable straw which you can see in the pictures of the one I linked to, but I don't like it. The ridged structure that makes it easily bendable also causes drag on the water and makes it harder to drink. So what I use are these. They are just the right size. They get a bit off smelling after a while (a month or two), and there's a brush included to clean them, but I can never really get them cleaned well, so I honestly just toss them and use another. It's $8 for 5, so you're looking at maybe $15 or so a year in straw costs. I had also looked at some of those reusable metal straws but then I realized how bad it would suck to pick up the cup too quickly and bash my teeth out with the inertia of a full 100oz cup.
Ice - Here's the the tricky one. This is basically why I filled it up at the gas station in the past. I'm really picky about ice and will only use clear "restaurant quality" ice. The kind of ice made in most freezer ice makers is cloudy because of air bubbles in the water, meaning that it also picks up any off smells in the freezer, melts far too quickly, is weirdly soft, etc. If you do it right, you can get pretty clear ice from ice trays, but if you're doing that for a cup that big, it's gonna take a lot of time. Here is a pic of the ice maker I bought to solve this problem (I bought it here). It does a really good job making clear, good tasting ice. I fill it up with a full load of water from the pitcher and usually within 90-120 minutes, it's full of clear square ice. Here is a pic of some extra ice I stash in the freezer from it. I'll edit this with a pic of some fresh super clear ice in a bit, I don't have any on hand right now. Overall, I like the ice machine, though I will say that it costs quite a bit to run (it runs at around 150W, spiking to 190W) and should be wiped down every week or two. It might just be easier to grab some of the 10 or 20lb bags of ice from the gas station or grocery story and use that. It is nice to be able to make it on demand though.
Every morning I get up and fill the ice maker up to the top, sip on the leftover water from last night while I wait for the new ice, and then refill when I'm done. I usually drink two cupfulls of water a day.
But what if I want my water to get me drunk?
The best part about water is that it makes the best mixed drink for sipping at home. Just carbonate it and mix it with a spirit. The Japanese highball is the height of such mixed drinks, but I've found that some experimentation yielded a variety of great options. I usually do around 5:1 water to spirit, but usually I eyeball the spirit pour and just full up the glass.
How to make it at home? Sodastream of course! Here is a picture of my Sodastream bottle, a very fancy eau-de-vie, and the resulting beverage. Here are my top picks for spirits to mix with your delicious spicy water:
- Plantation Stiggins Pineapple Rum - This is distilled with pineapple to give it some good pineapple flavor, but it's not too sugary. It's 20g/L of sugar, meaning that a drink made with 3oz of it has under 2g of sugar, making it a great option for ketohomies who miss fruity cocktails.
- Dingle Gin - Any decent gin will do, The Botanist is another great option. Mixing it with the water brings out the gentler botanical and herbal notes and makes for a refreshing drink.
- Lustau Solera Gran Reserva Brandy - This can be tricky to find, but if you can, try it. There's a $35 Gran Reserva and a $25 Reserva. The Gran Reserva's a bit better, but both are good. It ends up tasting like delicious sherry soda. Subtle nutty, chocolate, and maple syrup notes, but not sweet at all.
- Any bourbon - Japanese whiskey is good but my dirty secret is that I'll take a good bourbon highball any day. Weller OWA 107 is a great option that goes really well with the sparkling water, though it's next to impossible to find. Something with high value like McKenna Bottled in Bond, Wild Turkey 101, or Old Grand Dad 114 will do the trick.
- Green Chartreuse - I was amazed this works, but it does. Really REALLY herbal, so if that's your thing, go for it.
There are tons of other great options and plenty of bad ones (funky rum like Rumfire or Wray & Nephew, mezcal, peaty scotch, etc. are things I love that don't work)
Hope this inspires people to drink more fuckin water.
Reddit maker best ice
What are reddit's favoriteIce Makers?
From 3.5 billion comments
Opal Countertop Nugget Ice Maker
$400 - $500
GE Profile Opal | Countertop Nugget Ice Maker
$500 - $600
hOmeLabs Portable Ice Maker Machine for Countertop - Makes 26 lbs of Ice per 24 hours - Ice Cubes ready in 8 Minutes - Electric Ice Making Machine with Ice Scoop and 1.5 lb Ice Storage - Silver
Frigidaire EFIC206-Silver Compact Ice Maker, 26 lb per Day, Silver
$100 - $200
RCA RIC102-Silver Compact Ice Maker, Silver
$100 - $200
Vremi Countertop Ice Maker - Ice Cubes Ready in 9 Mins - Perfect for Water Bottles, Mixed Drinks - Portable Small Stainless Steel Ice Maker with Ice Scoop and Basket - Silver and Black
$100 - $200
Luma Comfort Portable Clear Ice Maker 28 lb Daily, Perfect Countertop Icemaker Machine, IM200SS Stainless Steel
$100 - $200
AGLUCKY Counter top Ice Maker Machine,Compact Automatic Ice Maker,9 Cubes Ready in 6-8 Minutes,Portable Ice Cube Maker with Scoop and Basket,Perfect For Home/Kitchen/Office/Bar (Silver)
$100 - $200
Crownful Ice Maker Machine for Countertop, 9 Ice Cubes Ready in 8-10 Minutes, 26lbs Bullet Ice Cubes in 24H, Electric Ice Maker with Scoop and Basket
$100 - $200
Avalon Bay AB-ICE26S Ice Maker, Silver
Igloo ICEB26HNSS Automatic Self-Cleaning Portable Electric Countertop Ice Maker Machine With Handle, 26 Pounds in 24 Hours, 9 Ice Cubes Ready in 7 minutes, With Ice Scoop and Basket, Stainless
$100 - $200
ULIT Ice Maker Countertop, Makes 26 lbs. Ice in 24 Hours,9 Ice Cubes Ready in 8 Minutes, Countertop Ice Maker machine with Ice Scoop and Basket, fit for home party, 1.6 lbs. Ice Storage (Black)
$50 - $100
Compact Ice Maker, Red
$50 - $100
IKT Ice Maker, ice makers countertop,self-cleaning,26.5 lbs per day, 9 ice ready in 6 minutes, with Ice Scoop and Bucket
$100 - $200
Ice Maker Machine Countertop, Portable Compact Ice Cube Makers, Make 26 lbs ice in 24 hrs,9 Cubes Rready in 5-6 Mins with Ice Scoop and Basket for Home/Office/Bar (Red) REMOVE BEFORE FLIGHT
NewAir Countertop Clear Ice Maker Machine, Makes 40 lbs of Ice, Portable Stainless Steel, ClearIce40
$200 - $300
White Countertop Portable Compact Ice Maker Ice Cube Machine, for Home Office Party, Boat RV
$50 - $100
Igloo ICEB26WH Automatic Portable Electric Countertop Ice Maker Machine, 26 Pounds in 24 Hours, 9 Cubes Ready in 7 minutes, With Scoop and Basket, Perfect for Water Bottles, Mixed Drinks, Parties, WHT
$100 - $200
FRIGIDAIRE EFIC108-BWHITE Portable Compact Maker, Counter Top Ice Making Machine, White
VIVOHOME Electric Portable Compact Countertop Automatic Ice Cube Maker Machine with Self Cleaning Function and Scoop 48lbs/day Silver
$200 - $300
CROWNFUL Ice Maker Countertop Machine, 9 Ice Cubes Ready in 8-10 Minutes, 26lbs Bullet Ice Cubes in 24H, Electric Ice Maker with Scoop and Basket - Black
$100 - $200
ADT Ice Maker Compact Automatic Ice Maker Machine with Self-cleaning
$100 - $200
VECYS IC1209 Countertop Ice Maker Machine, 9 Bullet Ice Cubes Ready in 8 Mins 26LBS in 24 Hours, Self-Clean 1.8L Portable Ice Maker Sport Series
Euhomy Ice Maker Machine Countertop, 26 lbs in 24 Hours, 9 Cubes Ready in 6 Mins, Electric ice maker and Compact potable ice maker with Ice Scoop and Basket. Perfect for Home/Kitchen/Office.(Sliver)
$100 - $200
KBice Self Dispensing Countertop Nugget Ice Maker, Crunchy Pebble Ice Maker, Produces 30 lbs of Nugget Ice per Day, Sonic Ice Maker Machine
$400 - $500
Frigidaire IM116000 Top Mount Refrigerator Ice Maker Kit
Himimi Ice Maker Machine for Countertop, Portable Ice Maker with Ice Scoop and Basket, Automatic Ice Cube Maker 9 cubes per 6-8 minutes, Perfect for Home, Office, RV, Boats, Bars (white)
$100 - $200
Ice Maker Machine,Compact&Lightweight Ice Maker with Ice Scoop (Black)
$100 - $200
Ice Maker Machine Countertop, 40Lbs/24H Auto Self-Cleaning, 24 pcs Ice Cube in 13 Mins, FREE VILLAGE Portable Compact Ice Cube Maker, With Ice Scoop & Basket, Ideal for Home/Kitchen/Office/Bar, Sliver
$100 - $200
VIVOHOME Electric Portable Compact Countertop Automatic Square Ice Cube Maker Machine with Scoop 40lbs/day Silver
$200 - $300
VECYS Countertop Ice Maker Machine, 9 Bullet Ice Cubes Ready in 8 Mins 26LBS in 24 Hours, Self-Clean 1.8L Portable Ice Maker with Ice Scoop and Basket, Great for Bar, Party, Dark Grey and White
ADT Countertop Nugget Ice Maker Machine 44lbs Per Day with a Ice Scoop
$300 - $400
Oatey 39130 1/2" FIP ICE MAKER BOX, Brass
Frigidaire EFIC103 Ice Maker Machine Heavy Duty, Large Stainless Steel
$100 - $200
Igloo ICEC33SB 33-Pound Large Capacity Automatic Portable Countertop Clear Ice Cube Maker, Black
$100 - $200
NewAir Portable Ice Maker 28 lb. Daily, Countertop Compact Design, 3 Size Bullet Shaped Ice, AI-100R, Red
$100 - $200
Frigidaire Counter Top Ice Maker, Produces 26 pounds Ice per Day, Stainless Steel with White See-through Lid (Renewed)
$100 - $200
FS-TFC Ice Maker Installation Kit and Fridge Water Line Connection for Reverse Osmosis Systems, Refrigerator and Water Filters
Frigidaire EFIC227-SILVER Compact Ice Maker and Water Dispenser, Silver
$100 - $200
Home Ice Maker Machine - Best Residential Ice Cube Maker - Portable Countertop Ice Machine Makes 15kg Ice in 24 Hours By Thinkgizmos
Ice Maker Machine Countertop, Ice Cubes Ready in 6 Mins, Make 26 lbs Ice in 24 Hrs with 2 Size (S/L), Compact Electric Ice Maker with Ice Scoop and Basket (COPPER)
$100 - $200
SPT IM-600US: Stainless Steel Under-Counter Ice Maker
$800 - $900
INNOVECO Dry ice Machine
$700 - $800
SWHOME Countertop Ice Makers Machine - 26LBS/24H Nugget Ice Cube Maker Portable Self Cleaning Ice Machine,2 Ice Sizes S/L (Classic Black)
$100 - $200
Many of us have had the chance to use ice makers in our freezer and fridge combination. There are also those who make ice using ice trays, a tub, or some other container to keep the ice from melting. Nugget ice makers are the new trend, regardless of what experience you have had with ice-making.
Nugget ice, a rare and delicious type of ice, is available. Nugget ice is commonly known as the “chewy ice at Sonic”, but it simply enhances your drinking experience. It can cool down your drink faster, reduces the amount of liquid in your drink, and is very tasty to eat. We’ll be reviewing the best nugget ice makers and letting you know if they live up to your claims.
Nugget Ice Makers vs Sonic Ice Makers
Sonic ice and Nugget ice are the same. However, Sonic ice is a trademark so “Nugget” or “Pellet” are terms used by companies to describe this type of ice.
This ice is not to be confused with crushed. Crushed ice can also be used to quickly chill drinks, but the process of making it is entirely different.
Crushed ice is made up of large cubes of ice that have been broken down into smaller pieces and flakes. The Nugget ice machine works in a different way. These machines make ice by freezing ice flakes in layers and freezing them together. The nuggets are able to form tiny pockets of air through this process. This results in a soft texture that is more easily ingested.
What is Nugget / Sonic Ice?
There are many small pleasures that you can enjoy in life. One of these is chewing ice after a refreshing drink. It’s almost like eating dessert after a great meal. The perfect ice must be small, crunchy, and easy to chew to not hurt your teeth. This is where nuggets ice comes in. Nugget ice is a small lump made from a lot of ice flakes. It looks similar to regular crushed ice at first, but it is soft and easy for you to chew. Sonic, an American fast-food chain, popularized it. Sonic ice is also known as Sonic ice.
Sonic is well-known for soft, chewy ice. Many customers stop by the store to get cups or bags. This is a long-standing tradition. However, they didn’t create nuggets of ice – even though they knew how to make a profit.
Scotsman Ice Systems, which was founded in 1981, invented the first nugget-ice maker. They offer many options for ice making, including sonic ice machines. Although it is not common to find pellet ice in restaurants and houses, you may have seen it at other establishments. Because of its softness, bartenders and ice-chewers love it.
List Of 15 Best Nugget Ice Maker Reviews
1. Manitowoc RNS-0244A Nugget Ice Maker
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- It can make up to 172 lbs of nuggets ice per day and can store up to 40 lbs of ice in its bin. Although the bin capacity is smaller than that of the Snooker machine’s, it should still be sufficient for most uses. Manitowoc also offers machines with a higher production capacity like 300 pounds.
- The RNS-0244A pearl maker is smaller than the Snooker machine. It is 33-3/16 inches high, which is the same height as Ice-O-Matic and Scotsman units. The Manitowoc machine is 3-4″ deeper than the models reviewed, so you will need a deeper countertop in order to install it in your work area.
- The RNS-0244A commercial Sonic Ice machine has a sliding door, rather than swinging open. This allows for more space. This will make it easier to open the unit in tight spaces. RNS-0244A is a very expensive nugget ice maker. However, it also has a strong-duty stainless steel construction that resists corrosion. Although it is advertised as an outdoor ice maker, Manitowoc does not claim that this model is suitable.
2. GE Profile Opal | Countertop Nugget Ice Maker
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- It measures 7.5×13.43×16.5 inches and is small enough to fit in a household. It’s also one of the very few household icemakers that makes nugget ice.
- The ice bin can hold 3 lbs of nuggets ice and produces up to 24 lbs per day. Each cycle takes around 20 minutes. It can be activated either physically or via Bluetooth (with an app).
- This ice machine comes with a 1-year warranty from GE. Register your product immediately through the GE website if you choose to go this route. This way, you are covered in the event of an emergency.
3. Prime Home Direct Counter Top Ice Maker
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- This nugget portable ice machine is a great choice if you are looking for a low-cost, high-quality product. This portable ice maker makes excellent nugget ice, and it is highly rated.
- The nugget maker can make a batch of ice in as little as 8 minutes. Although it can make 26 pounds of ice in a single day, it is not clear how many.
- The machine is small and portable, so it can be taken with you wherever you go.
- These smart features are built into the ice maker. The ice maker is not designed to overflow. It will shut off automatically if it reaches full. It is quiet and efficient during operation. You will find a basket and an ice scoop included.
4. NewAir Nugget Ice Maker
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- The NewAir Sonic Ice Maker’s fastest speed is one of my favorites. You can have your first batch ready in a matter of minutes. This ice maker is one of the fastest on the market.
- While other nugget ice makers can take up to 20 minutes to make, the NewAir impressed me by making the first batch in 5 minutes. This is due to the high-power cooling system that NewAir used in their icemaker, which makes it more efficient than any other nugget maker.
- There is also a self-cleaning feature and water recycling to make any unused ice available for freezing again. You don’t need to worry about the icemaker being on too long.
- The NewAir ice maker is very simple to use. The NewAir ice maker is compact and efficient, simple to clean and use. The front has only two red lights and one power switch.
- There are no dials or other buttons. You can turn it on and off. The one light indicates when the icemaker is full and the other when it has run dry. The lid of the ice maker has a small transparent panel that lets you see how much ice you have left.
5. Opal Countertop Nugget Ice Maker
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- FirstBuild is a well-known name in home appliance manufacturing. This is why we chose it as our top choice for the best nugget ice maker. This unit is made of stainless steel and has a sophisticated look. You can see through the glass window how full your ice bin is, without needing to check it again.
- The Opal 01 has an indicator light that blinks when water is low, so you don’t have to manually check your water reserves. It is extremely small and can be placed on countertops.
- It can produce up to 24 lbs despite its small size. It can produce up to 24 lbs of ice per day and has a storage volume of 3 lbs. This makes it ideal for small parties or daily use during the summer months. The FirstBuild app can also control the remote operation feature.
- The easy-to-use features enable automatic ice production and the recycling of meltwater. You don’t need to worry about ice overloads and puddles of liquid. Now you can have ice whenever you want it.
6. Linsion Commercial Ice Machine 100lbs/24h
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- This LINSION is the best option for your business, whether it’s a coffee shop, restaurant, or bar. This LINION is a great tool for making ice cubes quickly and easily in 12-18 minutes. It also comes with a small container that can be used to fill small soft drink bottles.
- The Linsion Commercial Ice Maker is also multi-taskable. All you have to do is install the pipe correctly. It is also made of high-quality material, which makes it durable for long-term use. This LINSION product is suitable for your finances and will help your business grow significantly.
7. Manitowoc CNF-0201A-L Nugget Ice Maker
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- Manitowoc offers ice makers with larger capacities. This ice maker/water dispenser can be used in small offices or large families. The nugget ice maker can be used on its own or placed on top of the counter. There is enough space for you to breathe.
- This stainless steel ice maker also has an internal condenser. This machine has LED indicators and a water replenishment alarm that lets you know when it is in need of attention. The auto-defrost feature ensures that it doesn’t freeze, but you will need to clean it.
- The built-in water dispenser provides ice-cold water when you need it. The lever-activated ice dispenser makes it easy to use and requires no scooping. With its large storage capacity, you can fill your cooler. Manitowoc’s ice machine can make up to 315 pounds of ice in just 24 hours. You can store enough ice in a 10lb bin to last you most of the day.
8. Frigidaire Counter top Portable Nugget Ice Maker
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- This machine is small and portable. It’s also very affordable. It is 17 pounds in weight and can produce up to 26 lbs. It can produce up to 26 lbs of ice per day. This is sufficient for a family, but not enough for large parties. The Frigidaire Nugget Ice Maker has a beautiful design. It comes with a transparent lid so that you can see what is happening inside.
- Frigidaire’s portable, freestanding icemakers have finally arrived on the market. You can choose from a variety of sizes, colors, and finishes that will seamlessly fit into your existing decor. These models have durable exteriors and see-through windows.
9. KBice Self Dispensing Countertop Nugget Ice Maker
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- KBIce Countertop Nugget ice Maker is a self-dispensing ice maker that delivers ice straight to your glass. If the scoop falls out, you don’t need to worry about storing it or having ice everywhere.
- The best part is that this self-dispensing machine is very easy to use. The buttons are easy to understand: clean, make and dispense. It’s simple to add ice to your drink when you are ready. There are no water hookups required. Add water to make ice, then press the start button. It’s as easy as that!
- This ice maker is ideal for those who don’t require a lot of ice at once. It only holds 1 lb. There is 1 lb of ice per bin. The KBIce Countertop Nuggetice Maker is a portable ice maker that makes excellent nugget ice. The company also offers 1-year parts and labor warranty in case anything goes wrong.
10. VIVOHOME Stainless Steel Electric Portable Compact Countertop Automatic Ice Cube Maker
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- The VIVOHOME Portable Ice Maker does not make the best nuggets ice maker, as it is similar to the IKICH. The VIVOHOME and IKICH ice machines are great if you’re looking for chewable ice.
- Because of its small size and lightweight, we chose it to be our top choice for portability. It is lightweight at just 21 pounds so you can easily move around with it. It can be used in an RV, boat, or on the camping grounds.
- Simply turn the machine on/off, select the ice size you prefer and need from the control panel. Automatic overflow protection ensures that there will never be any mess or ice tray issues.
- A compressor cooling system is used to ensure quiet operation. The top lid has a full-view window that allows for process monitoring and ice level checking.
11. Scotsman UN1520A-1 20-Inch Air-Cooled Nugget Undercounter Ice Maker
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- This nugget ice maker measures only 20 inches in width. With the use of a floor mounting kit and the air vents located in the front, the machine can be mounted under 34 inch ADA countertops.
- The slide-back door has an ergonomic design and provides adjustable legs, ice scoops, a power cord, and Nema 5-15P plug.
- This unit is built to last. The auger and the evaporator are both made from stainless steel. Side panels are made of an aluminum alloy that is resistant to corrosion. The unit’s front panel is corrosion-resistant and heavy-duty, which adds years to its life expectancy.
- This air-cooled, under-counter nugget maker is intended to safeguard the health of both people and the planet. It conforms to the US Safe Drinking Act’s low lead requirements and is energy-star compliant. It is also eco-friendly, as an R-134a refrigerant.
12. IKICH Portable Ice Maker
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- This transparent channel allows you to see the ice in your ice basket without opening the lid. It is very resistant to stains and easy to clean.
- The nugget ice maker also has 2 infrared sensors, which notify you when the water reservoir is empty and when the ice tray is full. Once the ice basket has reached its maximum capacity, the ice maker will stop. This allows you to refill your water reservoir and collect the processed ice.
- It is simple and fast to use. The machine can produce large or small-sized ice, depending on your preference. The machine produces 9 bullet-shaped ice cubes in just 6 minutes and weighs 28 lbs. It can produce a total of 9 pieces of bullet-shaped ice cubes in 6 minutes.
- The machine must be disconnected from an electric source and then emptied. You can wipe the machine clean with a damp towel and let it dry. The machine also has a drain plug, which allows you to drain and clean it easily.
- The IKICH Portable Ice Maker is small enough to fit in your pocket, even if you have a lot of space. This machine would look great on your countertop.
- A quiet machine that produces powerful results: The machine has a built-in spoiler to reduce unnecessary noise. This machine is quiet and produces excellent results without making as much noise as regular machines.
13. Costzon Commercial Ice Maker
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- If you are looking for a machine that can make ice fast, this is the best nugget ice maker for you. This ice machine will give you an impressive and outstanding ice making capacity.
- In just 12 minutes, it can make 48 ice cubes. It can hold 110 lbs of ice for 24 hours. This machine is a great assistant for coffee shops and beverage shops.
- You can also place the machine wherever you like. The product is made from premium quality stainless steel and has a longer service life. It also requires less repair. This machine is energy-efficient, which is another plus.
14. AGLUCKY Counter top Ice Maker Machine
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- Next, we have a sleek and red option. You can choose from black or stainless steel if you don’t love red. This makes bullet ice, but it is very similar to nugget-ice. It is small, chewable, and airy as nugget-ice.
- The nugget ice maker can be placed on the countertop and is compact and portable. It is lightweight, so it can be easily moved around or carried to where you need it.
- The fan design with an open space allows for airflow, making this model both quiet and efficient. Each batch can hold approximately 26 pounds of ice and takes only 8 minutes.
- The cooling system keeps the nuggets cold inside the bin. This makes your ice last longer and saves energy. You can see through the clear door and indicators. It is simple to use and can be adjusted according to your needs.
15. Igloo ICEB26WH Automatic Portable Electric Countertop Ice Maker
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- IGLOO’s compact design makes it the ideal choice for families with 2 or 3 members. It can be seen how it makes ice cubes. The lid also features an LED indicator light and a stylish control panel. This allows you to know when the ice has reached its maximum storage capacity.
- This unit can make 26 pounds of ice per day and can be made in just 7 minutes. The viewing window lets you see the ice is formed and the 2-pound ice container ensures that there is enough space for all your beverages.
- You can choose between small and large ice cube sizes. The panel also lets you know when water should be added and how full the ice basket is. Ideal for pool parties, office parties, dorm rooms, and other occasions.
The Nugget Ice Cubes are very handy and simple to use. Delicious fruit juice cups can be made for your family. If you own a business, the best nugget ice maker can help you reduce the cost of raw materials while making your customers feel more confident about the quality and safety of their drinks.
There are many ice makers on the market today with different prices and designs. You need to take into account many factors, such as machine capacity, price, and machine making time. A machine that costs a lot may not be the right one for you. The best nugget maker is one that meets your needs.
To help you choose the best nugget ice maker, we have compared and analyzed all the available options. To compile the best nugget ice machine lists, we compared and evaluated them on their price, storage capacity, and production rate.
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From birth, he must endure it, endure until his death. They talked about work, and Andrei remembered his guards, where he had worked before his arrest. Now he had forgotten about her. And then I suddenly remembered. - Half a life in the guard, he thought - Half a life and nothing good.