Commercial Ice Cream Makers Guide: Types and Uses

Did you know that Australia is one of the leading consumer markets of ice cream? That’s right, Aussies love their ice cream, more so than others. Truth be told, there’s only a handful of things that can draw a crowd as ice cream because hardly anyone can resist it. All of this is particularly exciting if you’re planning on opening your own shop and selling this delicious dessert. You’re in for a real doozy. Naturally, the first thing you’ll need is an efficient commercial gelato machine that is able to keep up with customer demand and meet your expectations.

What Are the Different Types of Commercial Ice Cream Machines?

In a nutshell, all ice cream machines are based on two fundamental principles – stirring and freezing. Using a rotating paddle, you stir the mixture in a bowl to blend the ingredients together. Once that’s done, it’s placed in a cooler to be transformed into the mouth-watering deliciousness that we all know and love. And when it comes to the different commercial gelato machine types, the end result is the same, with the only difference being in the execution.

ice cream vanilla

Pre-Freeze Machines

While these are more commonly found in domestic use, it’s not unusual for businesses to use them as well. The standout feature of these machines is the fact that you’re supposed to pre-freeze the mixture first before adding it to a mixer to be whipped. Sadly, the amount of ice cream you can actually produce in this way is limited to a single bowl, which is why business owners tend to avoid it.

Built-In Freezer Machines

By far the most popular type of industrial ice cream machine, this one is known of its convenience and ease of use. It lets you pour the mixture straight into the machine itself, which then both whips and freezes the ice cream. This is quite useful because you’re able to produce large quantities of ice cream over a short span of time.

Soft Serve Machine

These all-in-one models are normally found in self-serve shops. They use a pre-mix powder or liquid to produce ice cream which is then served into a cone or cup through a nozzle. This is a real crowd-pleaser, especially if your services are in high demand.

serving ice cream

Things to Know When Buying a Commercial Ice Cream Machine

Putting the type of ice cream machine aside, there are a bunch of other considerations you need to keep in mind in order to make the right decision.

Production Volume

Do you plan on making large quantities of dessert or would you like to start off small and build your way up? Either way, the output of your commercial gelato machine should match your business plan and customers’ needs. The overall production volume is based on the machine’s size, style as well as special features.

These days, most models are counter-mounted, which means they offer great flexibility and practicality. You just place them in your desired spot and you’re good to go.

Condensing Unit

ice cream machine

You’ll have the opportunity to choose between two types of cooling systems: air-cooled and water-cooled. The first one uses a vent system to draw in hot air and cool it down. These work best in air-conditioned environments and you’ll need to make sure you don’t cover the vents on either side by leaving some space between the wall and the machine.

On the other hand, water-cooled units use cold water to cool down the internal part. They need to be connected to a constant water supply as well as a drainage point in order to function. Some businesses consider this a hassle, opting for air-coolers instead.

Power Supply

Most compact countertop models are simply plugged into a regular nearby socket. However, larger commercial models might require a three-phase power connection to function.

Not all buildings have such power output available so make sure you double-check before you install your machine. Converting a standard socket to a three-phase power model is a pretty expensive investment initially but it’s an energy-efficient and money-saving solution in the long run. In any case, talk to a professional about your recommended course of action to get the best results.

Cleaning and Maintenance

Keeping your business premises clean should be part of your daily routine, and ice cream machines are no exception. Some models have an automatic wash cycle, which can definitely save you a lot of time and effort.

cleaning ice cream machine

If your particular make and model doesn’t offer such services, don’t fret – ask a professional to demonstrate how you’re supposed to clean its parts. Do you need to disassemble the unit and clean its components separately? Do you need to scrub everything or will soaking do the trick? Make sure to ask what kinds of cleaning products you should use so that you’re able to take care of your machine properly.

Storage and Display

Presentation is key. Once you’ve made your ice cream, you’ll have to figure out a way to store it. Pay close attention to the trays you’ll use for different flavours and consider the kind of display fridge you want. Place the trays neatly into the display to maximise space and keep production volume at high levels. All of this will more than likely please your customers, which is what every business owner wants to see.