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What is the Difference Between an Ice Cream Maker and Gelato Maker?

Ice Cream Maker vs Gelato Maker

With the right equipment on hand, you can have all the ice cream or gelato you want! While untrained tastebuds won’t know the difference, if you’re a true ice cream or gelato fanatic, you’ll know that they differ. Whichever one you prefer, or if you want to make both at home, you need to buy a machine that caters to your needs, and before you can do so, you first need to know the difference between an ice cream maker and gelato maker. This article gives you all the details you need to purchase your dream dessert maker.


Home Ice Cream Maker vs. Commercial Ice Cream Machine

Before we discuss the details of the different machines, you first need to decide if you want to purchase one for commercial or home use. A commercial gelato maker is great if you’re a small café or restaurant, want to launch a pop-up shop, or if friends and family consider you the gelato god and you want to spoil big crowds at events. These machines produce large quantities of ice cream or gelato at a time and tend to be more expensive. Before purchasing a commercial gelato maker, ensure that you’ll put it to good, and frequent, use.

Contrary to the above, a gelato maker for home use is perfect for individual servings. Home-use machines are easy to operate, produce smaller quantities, and are almost always budget-friendly.

The Difference is in the Details

Like many good things in life, the difference between ice cream and gelato is in the little details. While both are very popular dessert choices, each has a unique taste. Ice cream has a higher fat content and is airier, whereas gelato delivers a flavorful punch and is softer. If you want to purchase a gelato or ice cream maker for home use, you’ll have to get a machine with the specific elements or settings to create these different textures.

Many ice cream machines are advertised as two-in-one with reference to making ice cream and gelato. Although it’s true, using an ice cream maker is the biggest mistake you can make when you want perfectly made gelato.

When ice cream is made, a lot of air is included in the mix. This ensures that fluffy sensation you experience when eating a spoonful of it. Standard ice cream is also served at about 7-12 degrees Fahrenheit (-14°C to -11°C), and machines with self-cooling features will regulate these temperatures. These specifics of an ice cream machine are why it’s the wrong choice for gelato making.

If you purchase a gelato maker for home use, you’ll have a machine that incorporates less air into the mixture, ensuring that it’s dense and flavorful.

This perfect consistency will be paired with a serving temperature of approximately 10-15 degrees warmer than ice cream to eliminate the numbness of your taste buds that ice cream causes, allowing you to taste the gelato better.

While the difference between these two machines is slight, it impacts the end result. Purchasing a machine specifically designed for your dessert of choice will ensure the best treat!

Things to Consider when Purchasing a Gelato or Ice Cream Maker

When you’re out shopping for your frozen dessert maker, keep the following in mind:

Ease of Use: Consider your personal skill level before purchasing an ice cream or gelato maker for home use. Each works differently, and while some just require the press of a button, others have a bit more to them.

Your Budget: The main loss when spending less on one of these machines is convenience and speed. When deciding what your budget is, weigh these factors against how much you’re willing to pay.

Capacity: Before selecting a model, consider how much gelato or ice cream you’ll want to make at a time.

Maintenance and Cleaning: Most people end up stashing their favorite kitchen tools away in the cupboard because of how much work it is to clean. Having a machine that needs regular maintenance is no fun either. If you hate the job, get a gelato or ice cream maker for home use that’s easy to clean and easy to maintain.

In Conclusion

Gelato and ice cream are both great frozen desserts, and being able to make one or both of them at home is sure to sweeten up your life. If you love experimenting with recipes or your family is frozen dessert fanatics, then you need to purchase one now.

Before deciding on a machine, ensure that you know the basic ins and outs of making your chosen dessert.

Now that you know the difference between ice cream and gelato makers, you’re already one step closer to making the perfect batch!