The minimal-fuss Cuisinart ICE-30BC Pure Indulgence is one of the best ice cream makers we tested. It takes only a little foresight to prepare ingredients and the freezer bowl to make fresh desserts, and we liked the machine’s large, sturdy base and non-slip feet. Unfortunately, during our testing we found that ice cream is prone to overflow from the Pure Indulgence, but cleanup is as easy as wiping the smooth plastic with a wet paper towel and dish soap.
Little preparation is needed to make homemade ice cream with this machine. Its freezer bowl’s inner walls are lined with non-toxic coolant that acts as the freezing component, and the only prep work is chilling the bowl in the freezer. A few other machines, including the Cuisinart ICE-21, also use a freezer bowl to chill ice cream. Consider whether you have enough space in your freezer to store the bowl constantly – if you don't keep it in the freezer, you have to chill the bowl for at least six hours before you can use it.
Once it is completely frozen, you place the 2-quart freezer bowl inside the stainless steel base. The mixing arm fits inside the bowl and spins with it. The Pure Indulgence is fast and quiet compared to similar models.
The bucket ice cream makers we tested took about an hour to make soft-serve ice cream, while this electric ice cream maker only took 40 minutes. For harder ice cream, you need to freeze the mixture after churning.
Like many freezer bowl models, the Pure Indulgence is made up of four parts: a base, freezer bowl, dasher and cover. There are no dishwasher-safe parts, but cleanup requires only a wet paper towel and a little dish soap. The base has a smooth metal finish that rarely touches ice cream, and the rest of the machine is made of smooth plastic.
This machine can mix up to 2 quarts of ice cream, which isn’t enough to satisfy a large group. Keep in mind that the mixture expands as it freezes, so you should keep an eye out for overflow if you make a full 2-quart batch.
The Pure Indulgence stands 11.2 inches high and 8 inches wide, and its square body makes it easier to store than round appliances. Because ice cream makers aren't an everyday appliance, storage is an important consideration.
This ice cream maker also comes with a longer-than-average three-year warranty. Unfortunately, it was the most expensive machine we reviewed, though it works well and makes great ice cream.
The user manual includes 28 recipes for ice cream, gelato, sorbet, frozen yogurt and slush drinks as well as guides for using milk and sugar substitutes in your frozen desserts. There is also nutrition information. For entertaining, there are recipes for ice cream loaf, pie, sodas and parfaits, and Cuisinart has more recipes on its website.