Sharon DeVellis: Inside Scoop


Review: Hamilton Beach Half Pint Soft-Serve Ice Cream Maker

An Easy Way To Make Your Own Ice Cream

Vanilla Ice Cream Ingredients: Cream, Modified Milk Ingredients, Sugar, Glucose, Mono and Diglycerides, Locust Bean Gum, Cellulose Gum, Guar Gum, Carrageenan, Natural and Artificial Flavour

Those are the ingredients listed in a container of vanilla ice cream in my freezer right now. Sounds yummy, doesn't it? Pass me some more of those diglycerides please!

I'm an 85/15 mom. 85 percent of the time my kids eat real food. 15 percent of the time they eat processed stuff.  That means if you look in my fridge you'll see a bowl of homemade lemon dressing that I use for salads, but you'll also see bottled dressings for the days when the homemade dressing is gone and I haven't had time to make more.  Pop into my pantry and you'll see cans of chickpeas and black beans. You'll also see a couple of boxes of crackers and some chewy bars.

Reading the ingredients on the vanilla ice cream grossed me out. I have nothing against sugar or treats but I am becoming more and more concerned about the processed foods our kids eat. So after doing a bit of research I took it upon myself to contact Hamilton Beach and asked if I could try their Half Pint Soft-Serve Ice Cream Maker. It seemed the perfect fit for me—small, compact and easy to use. We don't have much kitchen counter/cupboard space so I didn't want to commit to a larger ice cream maker (yet).

Here's the inside scoop on the Half Pint: 

-The ice cream is simple to make
-The Half Pint takes up very little room
-The ice cream is ready in 12 minutes
-It makes two servings (and a bit left over for me) at a time
-Expect a soft serve style ice cream
-My boys have declared it "the best ice cream they've ever tasted"

It took a few tries for me to get the ice cream to the proper consistency (when it says 12 minutes, wait the full 12 minutes) but now that we've perfected it, I make the ice cream a few times a week. I typically double up on the recipe that came with the Half Pint (see below) and keep it in the fridge in a tupperware container so it's just a matter of putting it on the machine when we start dinner and by the time we are finished eating, dessert is ready.

Vanilla Ice Cream

    2 cups (500 ml) half 'n half
    1 cup (250 ml) heavy whipping cream
    1 1/2 teaspooons (7 ml) vanilla extract
    1/2 cup (125 ml) sugar

1. Put ingredients in tupperware container. Shake well to mix.

2. Put ingredients into Half Pint Soft-Serve Ice Cream Maker. Put on lid with mixer and turn on.

3. Voila! Fresh ice cream.

We've also added mashed bananas and strawberries to the vanilla ice cream recipe (delicious!) and I made this strawberry jam recipe that we used as topping.

If you're hesitant about investing in a full-size ice cream maker I would definitely recommend the Hamilton Beach® Half Pint™ Soft-Serve Ice Cream Maker. It retails at $39.99.

Serving real food to your family doesn't have to be time-consuming or difficult.

Note: I was fiven the Hamilton Beach® Half Pint™ Soft-Serve Ice Cream Maker at no cost. The opinions stated above are my own.