The Lakeland Mini Ice Cream Maker is billed as a "one portion" ice cream maker and it certainly is small, but 0.5 litres is a respectable amount.
The bowl fits easily into even the most cramped freezer. But we found that its ice cream was far too runny. Better to spend a bit more and get a much better machine.
The Lakeland Mini Ice Cream Maker is billed as a "one portion" ice cream maker but let's get one thing straight: 0.5 litres of ice cream is not a portion unless you're having a really bad day, in which case you buy a tub and head straight to the couch with a spoon, in your PJs. We've all done it, but most days 0.5 litres of ice cream is plenty for two or more people.
So the capacity isn't tiny, but it is much smaller than most ice cream makers. Rival machines that don't cost much more can make 1.5 or 2 litres. If you're going to the trouble of making ice cream mix, surely it makes more sense to make a bigger batch and freeze it?
Even with the top on it, it's compact – it’s the size of a family teapot. You'll either love or loathe the pink styling but at least it isn't boring. You must pre-freeze the entire body of the machine the night before making ice cream. But thankfully it's small enough to fit in even the most cramped freezer.
A simple top and paddle clip onto the freezer bowl. There's a hole in the see-thru top just big enough to pour in your ice cream mix and sprinkle in extra ingredients.
Pre-freezing the bowl was no bother at all, it's so small. The instructions are basic and include just four recipes. The machine is very basic but it claims it "churns ice cream, sorbet and frozen yogurt to smooth perfection".
We put it to the test and found it was easy enough to use. Although the machine is small, the opening in the top is just big enough to pour in ice cream mix. And while the paddle is small and flimsy, it does the job.
At first the ice cream mix thickened up and started expanding quickly… but after half and hour we realised that it wasn't going to get any thicker as the small freezer bowl was thawing. The bowl basically isn't big enough to hold the cold for long enough to freeze the ice cream properly.
The results were indeed smooth… but far from perfection. As runny as a thick milkshake, this was definitely not something you could serve as a dessert unless you put it in the freezer for a while. And once the mix had frozen overnight it was very firm because little air had been introduced: fairly tasty but a poor and slightly granular texture.
No. It's cute and compact but it's not really worth having. You could put ice cream mix in a tub in the freezer, taking it out occasionally to stir it, and get similar results.
We'd recommend the Swan Come Dine With Me Ice Cream & Gelato Maker instead. If you want something a bit smaller then consider the Kenwood Ice Cream Maker IM200. Or for healthy frozen desserts look at the Judge Fro Fru.
This mini ice cream maker is a cute idea but it's too small to work properly. Avoid.