Industrial Revolution's Play & Freeze Ice Cream Maker Review
This innovative approach to ice cream making is roundly lauded by adults and kids. The Play & Freeze is a lightweight polycarbonate "ball" that makes good ice cream in less than 30 minutes by being kicked or thrown around; it needs no electricity so you can take it anywhere. This one-pint model comes in a variety of colors; the quart version costs about $10 more.
The only cheap ice cream maker on our list that requires absolutely no electricity, Industrial Revolution's Play & Freeze is a hit with a wide range of users. Play & Freeze reviews on sites like Amazon and Walmart say the plastic ball, filled with rock salt and ice in one compartment and the ice cream or frozen treat mixture in another, appeals to campers, boaters, picnickers, and travelers, young and old alike. One mom posting a Play & Freeze review on the Target site says she and her family, including a teenager, use this cheap ice cream maker every weekend.
Even without electric power, making ice cream with the Play & Freeze is easy as pie. All you need do is throw or roll it around -- the polycarbonate plastic exterior is lightweight and surprisingly durable -- for about 20 minutes. Some Play & Freeze reviews say a fully loaded ball may be too heavy for smaller children and the effort required may bore others who don't yet appreciate the wonders of delayed gratification. But for many consumers, the simplicity, portability, novelty, even suitability as a fun muscle-building exercise (notes one user in a Play & Freeze review), make up for the Play & Freeze's minor faults. A ccording to Play & Freeze reviews, those would be: normal size ice cubes don't fit into the "freezer" compartment (use crushed ice, suggests one Play & Freeze review), the need to stop the process half-way through to stir down the sides to ensure an even consistency, small messes when you open the top mid-stream, occasional problems with leaky saltwater, and a small yield.
The Play & Freeze comes in two sizes: the one-pint version measures eight inches in diameter and weighs 26 ounces; the quart version measures nine inches in diameter and weighs 40 ounces. (The larger version is more expensive.) The Play & Freeze is also available in a variety of colors, including blue, red, purple, pink, orange, and green.
A few Play & Freeze reviews argue against spending your money on this one, griping about indifferent results and an excess of hype about the fun of it all, but many other users seem satisfied. Despite the odd preparation and kiddie profile, consumers say the ice cream comes out surprisingly well.
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