Despite its high rating on Amazon, ThinkGizmos – TG22 suffered from inconsistency between its settings, both in how much the ice tray could hold and how quickly the ice was produced. Like the units we tested, the ThinkGizmos worked best when making small ice cubes even though it produced the least amount of ice (22.4 pounds per day). At the large setting, the ThinkGizmos performed the worst, producing a meager 11.2 pounds per day.
With this portable counter top ice maker, it would be easy. Beyond its beautiful features, there are also drawbacks. First, the portable crushed ice maker doesn’t have a power backup option - its settings would reset and must set them again when power is back. It’s a great feature for a countertop ice maker that keeps ice frozen even if unused. But this one doesn’t come with that mentioned feature. It means that unutilized cubes need transferring to a freezer to keep them solid. Otherwise, they would liquefy again.
Having an ice maker at home can be a worthwhile investment if you entertain a lot or have a large family. Most refrigerators are able to produce ice, but it's not as efficient as having a dedicated ice maker. Whether you're replacing an existing ice machine or looking to buy one for the first time, the NewAir 50 lb. Portable Ice Maker is a great choice.
As every host knows, ice — and plenty of it — is a must-have for any party. Even if you’ve got great beverage containers like those we chose in our insulated tumbler review or insulated water bottle review, ice is essential for keeping any drink as cold as possible. If you’re grilling outside on a hot day, the best lunch boxes and coolers with the best insulation will still need ice to protect uncooked food from entering the bacteria-incubating danger zone.
Bryan is our cooking and kitchen expert, with more than 15 years of experience of cooking and testing kitchen products. When outside of the kitchen, he enjoys woodworking, photography, videography and figuring out how to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle. He thoroughly enjoys discovering the best, whether it’s ingredients or equipment, and finding products that can stand the rigors of daily use.
With its larger size, NewAir's AI-100R compact ice maker offers a bigger cube production capacity; it’s durable that could last in your service for many years. Their compact ice machine comes in a simplified cleaning process —after use, unplug and just drain water contents through its side-mounted drain. It’s one of those best small portable ice makers.
They’re also useful in a number of other spots where people need more ice than a freezer’s ice maker produces, like in office break rooms or retirement communities, where a lot of different people want to be able to refill drinks throughout the day. And of course, they can be useful in many homes, both for parties when you have more guests over than you can accommodate with the ice maker built into your fridge and for families that simply go through a lot of ice every day.
An ice maker has a fairly tough job to do — freezing water isn’t easy. For a portable ice maker that can get the job done without wearing out quickly, you should go with a brand that has a strong reputation. To give you a better idea as to which brands typically provide the best performance, we analyzed all the customer reviews of ice makers made by some of the top brands in the space. Here’s a summary of what customers are saying.
Built for commercial use, this freestanding ice maker is perfect for those who host sizable parties or barbecues, or need to fill large coolers for tailgating or other events. It can make up to 99 pounds of ice in 24 hours, and it can store 29 pounds of ice at one time, so you'll always have plenty on hand. The thickness of the ice and freezing time can be adjusted by pressing the plus or minus buttons on the control panel, so you can customize the size and frequency of ice depending on your needs. Despite its high output, it only measures 17.6 x 15.7 x 31.4 inches, so you can easily place it in your kitchen or pantry without it taking up too much space.
Merax' device makes crystal-clear ice that is harder and denser; their countertop ice machine produces melt slowly and doesn’t dilute your drinks taste and quality. Also, the portable countertop ice maker comes with sleek and compact design and user-friendly digital control panel - this countertop ice maker machine has a stainless steel framework that ensures quality and durability.
If you're not familiar with nugget ice, it's a soft and chewable type of ice that's best used for blended drinks like smoothies and frozen margaritas (if you're looking for an easy margarita recipe, try one of these margarita mixes). Nugget ice is also great for blended cocktails as it will keep your mixture cooler for a longer period of time and won't dilute the flavors.