Ice cream is good anywhere, but there’s nothing like the creamy goodness of ice cream outside. If you prefer the great outdoors, you can take the Cuisipro Donvier ice cream maker anywhere. It may look like an old-fashioned salad spinner, but this hand crank ice cream maker creates thick ice cream for indulgent desserts and health nuts alike. This maker takes minimal foresight to create tasty treats.
Before making homemade ice cream with this machine, you’ll want to store the metal bowl in the freezer overnight. The nontoxic coolant inside the canister’s double walls freezes the milky mixture into ice cream. Once you’re ready to make ice cream, pour your mixture into the frozen bowl, add the lid, dasher and connect the hand crank.
Donvier’s hand crank is a bit of a “good news, bad news” situation. First, the good news: You don’t have to crank much to get ice cream. In fact, the manufacturer discourages you from over-stirring your icy mixture. You only need to hand crank the Donvier four times every few minutes. We like this because it saves your arm and frees your hands to prepare other food.
The bad news is that the dasher fits tightly and the mixture thickens quickly in the freezer bowl. This means you may have to fight a little to start stirring the mixture comfortably. After you start cranking, the mixture blends easily. But those first few churns can be a serious pain. We don’t recommend adding mix-ins like chocolate chips until the mixture thickens to a loose milkshake consistency. Otherwise, small pieces sink to the bottom when the mixture is still liquid and makes cranking the ice cream harder.
The most redeeming quality about the hand crank method is the lack of moving parts or need for electricity. Because of this, the Donvier is less likely to break or malfunction. The feature also makes this ice cream maker extremely portable. You don’t need rock salt, ice or an electric outlet to make frozen treats in under half an hour. It’s small, standing at 9 inches tall and 8 inches wide and can fit in most places in your kitchen.
It’s portable, but the Donvier isn’t rugged. The acrylic lid and freezer bowl scratch easily, so it’s best to limit outdoor use to picnics rather than rough camping trips. We recommend storing the freezer bowl in your freezer when it’s not in use. While it may occupy valuable freezer space, you’ll be able to make ice cream on the fly.
Without any other kind of power, the Donvier relies solely on the freezer bowl to chill any mixtures. Freezer space may be tight, but to get the most out of this ice cream maker, it’s best to keep the freezer bowl stored in your freezer. The hand crank is the most outstanding feature of this ice cream maker, earning it a spot among the best ice cream makers we reviewed. This feature makes the Donvier highly portable for picnics or other functions, but it requires a bit of grunt work to start.