Hungry for homemade vegan ice cream? We put the VonShef ice cream maker to the test to see if it can make delicious vegan ice cream in an hour
VonShef Ice Cream Maker with Compressor | £109.99 | Tester: Molly Pickering
White VonShef ice cream maker with built-in compressor
Summer is officially here and what better way to cool yourself from the heat than by enjoying some homemade vegan ice cream?
Over the next month, we’re on the hunt to find the best ice cream maker to help you get creative in the kitchen serving up your own tasty vegan ice cream recipes.
Sure, there are plenty of dairy-free ice cream options in the supermarkets, but they are often priced at £4-£5 per tub. Making your own ice cream can save you money and put you at the top of everyone’s friend list in summer (everyone loves homemade ice cream, right?).
Today, we’re putting the VonShef Ice Cream Maker with Compressor to the test. This machine is said to make delicious soft-serve ice cream in just one hour! It can also make gelato, sorbet, and frozen yoghurt.
Thanks to the machine’s compressor, there is no need to pre-freeze the bowl, making homemade ice cream simple and quick.
Keep reading to find out what we thought!
- Capacity: 1L
- Built-in compressor (no need to pre-freeze)
- Easy-clean removable bowl
- Measurement: H26 x W23 x D36cm
- Where to buy: Amazon, VonHaus
- Made soft serve ice cream in under an hour
- Simple to use
- Comes with a recipe booklet to get you started (although only 1 recipe was vegan)
- Comes with a handy ice cream scoop and spatula
- Great quality
- Instructions are too basic
Setting up the VonShef ice cream maker
This machine is pretty hefty – it’s roughly the size of a small bread maker. At first glance, the machine looks simple enough to use, there is a dial with four power functions, and the additional components include a 1L detachable bucket, detachable paddle, motor unit, and a handy ice cream scoop and spatula.
There is also an instruction booklet a small recipe booklet which features four ice cream recipes, although only one is vegan. The instruction booklet is pretty basic but it talks you through each of the functions, what to do before the first use, and how to operate.
You can choose from four modes – power, single mixing, refrigeration, and ice cream. Of course, the power mode turns the machine on and off, whilst the mixing mode activates the churning paddle for 30 minutes to help create a smoother, creamier ice cream texture. The refrigeration mode keeps the ice cream chilled thanks to the built-in compressor, and the ice cream mode activates the churner, compressor, and cooling fan making soft serve ice cream in an hour.
Although this machine is rather large, the components that need to be cleaned are minimal – it’s just the bowl, paddle, and transparent lid that need cleaning (be sure to remove the motor unit from the transparent lid before submerging it in water).
Before its first use, the paddle, bowl, and transparent lid need to be cleaned in hot soapy water and thoroughly dried to remove any residue left from production. It is stated that a slightly strange smell may occur in the first 10 minutes of using the machine, but this is normal and will disappear quickly.
The VonShef ice cream maker whipped up delicious vegan ice cream in under an hour © Vegan Food & Living
Making vegan ice cream
With so many possible ice cream flavours to make, I decided to keep it simple (but equally delicious). I used a vegan cherry and coconut ice cream recipe, which consisted of coconut milk, fresh cherry, cornflour, and caster sugar.
Following the recipe, I melted the coconut milk, sugar, and cornflour together before adding chopped cherries and leaving them to cool. Once cooled I added them to the VonShef ice cream maker and set the machine to ice cream mode and let it do its thing.
Admittedly, there were some initial issues with the paddle not turning, however that was a human error which I quickly resolved (I think the paddle wasn’t correctly fitted to the motor so it wasn’t able to turn).
The ice cream maker is rather noisy, but that is to be expected with these machines, particularly when there are compressors and cooling fans involved.
Before my eyes I watched the cream mixture get thicker and thicker and soon there was a delicious mound of churned vegan ice cream.
After roughly 50 minutes, I decided the take the ice cream out of the machine. At this point, you can either enjoy it in its ‘soft serve’ state or freeze it overnight for a firmer texture.
I decanted the mixture into a container but I couldn’t resist a spoon or two of my fresh ice cream. Even in its softer state, it tasted incredible and the texture was great.
Not only did the machine produce delicious vegan ice cream, but it did it faster than it promised!
Although the sorbet still needed to be frozen, it had a great texture! © Vegan Food & Living
Making sorbet in the VonShef ice cream maker
I was interested to see how making sorbet in the ice cream maker varied from making ice cream as the consistency is obviously different. Would this affect the timings?
For the flavour, I chose a refreshing pink grapefruit and basil sorbet recipe and added a dash of elderflower cordial for a floral note.
I followed the timings from the recipe booklet with the ice cream maker and set the machine to ice cream mode for 30 minutes and then froze the sorbet overnight. After 15 minutes, the sorbet mixture was still liquid, and I worried that I would have to leave it in for longer than 30 minutes.
However, in a flash, the liquid had turned into a slushy icy mixture. Even though the sorbet hadn’t fully set, it tasted great and the texture was spot on.
I really loved the VonShef Ice Cream Maker, mainly for its quality and simplicity.
You could argue that it doesn’t look the most high-tech compared to some other machines on the market, but VonShef’s ice cream maker gets the job done without relying on any fancy features.
My one fault is that the instructions are perhaps too basic and that if this was your first time using an ice cream machine, you may require a bit more guidance. But other than that I loved it!
I also think the price of the machine is very reasonable. Although it costs just over £100, it’s still considered fairly cheap compared to other ice cream makers which cost £300+.
Need inspiration for your new ice cream maker? Here are 20 vegan ice cream recipes to get you started