The 10 Best Snow Cone Makers

Updated June 23, 2017 by Daniel Imperiale

10 Best Snow Cone Makers
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 45 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. Treat your kids to a delicious and reasonably healthy treat with your very own snow cone machine. We've put our noses to the grindstone and found the best shaved ice makers on the market. Once you've got one, you can apply sugary syrup or keep it light and simple with freshly-squeezed juices. We've rated the models here on price, durability, and production volume. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best snow cone maker on Amazon.

10. Hamilton Beach 68050

The Hamilton Beach 68050 owes the bulk of its reputation to its compact size; removable, dishwasher-safe parts; and its ability to dispense either slushies or snow cones as you see fit. The receiving container rattles during use, though.
  • stir arm mixes ingredients
  • works with frozen fruit
  • doesn't shave ice that fine
Brand Hamilton Beach
Model 68050
Weight 5 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

9. Nostalgia Electrics SCM502

The Nostalgia Electrics SCM502 has an old-fashioned style, as it shaves its ice and deposits it directly into a large, clear storage container. That way, you can keep an eye on when you might need to make more. But it doesn't create the fluffiest product.
  • convenient side tray holder
  • small countertop size
  • frozen chunks form too easily
Brand Nostalgia Electrics
Model SCM502
Weight 6.5 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

8. Hawaiian Shaved Ice S900A

The Hawaiian Shaved Ice S900A is quick to use and dispenses fine shaved ice that has a snow-like consistency. Its attractive design allows you to leave it on the countertop, but it disassembles for easy storage if you don't have the space.
  • durable enough to last a long time
  • 1-year warranty
  • blade cannot be adjusted
Brand Hawaiian Shaved Ice
Model S900A
Weight 3.3 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

7. Waring Pro SCM100

The Waring Pro SCM100 has a bright red body that brings to mind thoughts of the carnival and the street fair. The addition of a fold-down double cone holder allows for easy serving, but it has a fairly small overall ice capacity.
  • dependable brand name
  • 4 bpa-free reusable cones
  • cube pusher is made from plastic
Brand Waring
Model SCM100
Weight 7.2 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

6. Disney DFR-613

If you are looking for a smaller option that is perfect for use with just you and the kids, the Disney DFR-613 is probably a smart choice. It is budget-friendly, small enough to hide when not in use, and has a fun character design.
  • one-touch operation
  • 2 ice molds and 6 paper cups
  • pointy nose can be dangerous
Brand Disney
Model DFR-613
Weight 5.1 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

5. Victorio Kitchen Products VKP1100

The Victorio Kitchen Products VKP1100 is an economical choice that works well enough for small parties, but it wouldn't be suitable for a larger gathering. It uses regular ice cubes, and comes apart easily for a speedy cleanup.
  • adjustable blade
  • motor has a safety kill switch
  • shoots out too wide of a stream
Brand Victorio Kitchen Produc
Model VKP1100
Weight 2.9 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

4. WYZWorks Commercial

The WYZWorks Commercial is undoubtedly more of a professional grade option, as it can blow through 440 lbs. of ice per hour without overheating or failing. It also has a smooth, eye-catching deign that looks elegant no matter where you put it.
  • power switch has a waterproof cover
  • creates very light and powdery snow
  • noisy in operation
Brand WYZworks
Model pending
Weight 21.3 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

3. VIVO ICE-V001

The VIVO ICE-V001 has a very heavy and stable base that won't move around while it's running. A built-in safety switch automatically kills the power when the hopper is open, so you don't have to worry about kids getting hurt while using it.
  • 8-inch stainless steel dish
  • shaves extremely quickly
  • very easy to clean
Brand VIVO
Model ICE-V001
Weight 12.2 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

2. Waring Pro IC70

The Waring Pro IC70 has a sturdy construction with an attractive, stainless steel finish and a sleek design that won't look out of place on your countertop at home or in a professional establishment. Operation is easy with a simple on/off switch.
  • user manual includes recipes
  • can hold 12 lbs of crushed ice
  • wide mouth funnel attachment
Brand Waring
Model IC70
Weight 7.4 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

1. Great Northern Popcorn Company 6057

The Great Northern Popcorn Company 6057 has a fully adjustable, stainless steel blade that cuts effortlessly through ice using its 1/3 HP motor operating at 1,725 RPM. It's capable of continuously shaving 6 lbs. of cubes per minute.
  • fun and whimsical graphics
  • commercial grade quality
  • 1-year warranty
Brand Great Northern Popcorn
Model 6057 Ice Cub Shaver
Weight 56.2 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

A Simple Beast To Chew Your Ice

If you've ever tossed a ball up through the moving blades of a ceiling fan, you'll have a pretty clear understanding of how a snow cone machine works, and how you can affect its output. Trust me; it's a more popular past time than you might think.

Very basically, you feed ice through a hopper and press it down into a set of moving blades where it gets crushed and deposited out the other side into a kind of collection bowl.

Some simpler household machines don't have anything with which you can press the ice into the blades, and that's going to limit the variety of your ice texture.

Remember: finer ice shavings pack more tightly and absorb more of your flavoring syrup.

Back to the ball and the fan. Since the fan's blades move at a constant rate, if you throw the ball upward with great force, the ball will likely either hit a blade directly and bounce back, or it will flow through one of the gaps between the fan blades, hit the ceiling and come back down.

However, if you throw the ball up with less force, you will increase its hang time in the vicinity of the blades, and one of the blades will catch it just right to send it flying across the room.

Likewise, if you push the ice through the blades of your crusher with greater force, the pieces that come out the other end will be bigger, since there's a greater chance they'll get through with less contact from the blades.

If you apply little to no pressure, the ice will hit the blades more often as it makes its way along the slow and steady path to your belly, resulting in finer ice shavings and a juicier snow cone.

A Slew Of Snow Makers

We touched for a moment there on the ways that a snow cone maker's design might limit your ability to control the consistency of your shaved ice.

Some of the machines in our top five have very convenient press handles that give you more control over that consistency, for the harder you push your ice through the maker, the coarser it will come out.

In addition to that difference, something you might want to consider while mulling the benefits of one machine over another, is the amount of shaved ice you actually need.

If you're making a couple of snow cones at a time for a few kids who never finish anything you feed them, you might not need a machine that crushes 440 lbs. of ice per hour.

However, if you're in need of that kind of capacity, it's right up there among our finer machines.

All of the units available here can deliver amazing results and give you tasty, refreshing treats (so much of a snow cone is in the flavor, after all). The question of quantity is the most important one for you to answer.

After that, you can consider little features like the inclusion of a press, or, if you're designing your kitchen around it, the attractiveness of the unit.

Flavor Meets Ice

It's pretty well-accepted that Samuel Bert invented the first ice crushing machine in 1919, and debuted it that year at the Texas State Fair. The origin of the flavored snow cone itself, though, is more slippery. Get it? Ice? Slippery? Okay; moving on.

Those snow cones may have been among the first sold from a mechanical device, but evidence shows that balls of shaved ice were consumed with flavored toppings some point up to 70 years before Bert's invention.

From the right angle on the main approach to the Lincoln Tunnel leading into New York City from the New Jersey side, you can see the remnants of a small cave cut high into the rock above the tunnel.

Before the industrial revolution made the manufacture of ice a possibility, large blocks and quantities of ice were often brought in from the sea and stored in caves like the one above the tunnel.

The mid-Atlantic and southern regions of the US eastern seaboard were the best places to market this ice since the climate in those regions was much warmer. Along the journey south, ice transporters in Baltimore, MD and other cities had small crowds of children descend upon them asking for shavings from the ice blocks.

These kids brought the ice shavings home, and their mothers would whip up a simple egg custard from eggs, sugar, and vanilla–the first snow cone topping.

I mention Baltimore because the theaters in that city have some of the earliest evidence of the confection's popularity: signs advising theater patrons to finish their "snowballs" before returning to the theater for the second act.

Once Bert's invention and similar patents made larger scale commercial production of the snow cone possible, the industry was off and running.

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Last updated on June 23, 2017 by Daniel Imperiale

Daniel is a writer, actor, and director living in Los Angeles, CA. He spent a large portion of his 20s roaming the country in search of new experiences, taking on odd jobs in the strangest places, studying at incredible schools, and making art with empathy and curiosity.

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