Do you like creating tropical beverages such as strawberry daiquiri or mango punch for adults? What about crafting snow cones for kids? If your answer is yes and yes, then invest in an ice nugget machine. Why? Because Nugget ice is often coined as the “perfect ice” by home mixologist and professional bar stewards alike.
Do you also like to munch on ice? Yes, you would appreciate the chewable form of nugget ice. Unlike the regular rock-solid ice, it is airy almost like crushed ice but it doesn’t melt as quickly.
We have made a compilation of the top 6 best nugget ice makers. They are fast, reliable, and simple to use. We highlighted their standout features and included a buying guide. Check them out!
In a hurry? Our number 1 all-around ice maker is the GE Profile Opal Ice Maker. This premium unit is portable and easy to use. It has an incredible ice making capacity to hold up to 4 lbs. of ice at one go.
It is equipped with durable and long-lasting features including a side attached tank, smart refill system, Bluetooth-enable, a GE Profile Opal App, and more. When it comes to making soft and fine-textured ice, GE Profile Opal Ice Maker is unarguably one of the bests.
Here is our top-rated list for the best nugget ice machines. Have fun picking up the one best meets your needs.
Benefits & Buying Guide of The Best Nugget Ice Maker
Getting the best nugget ice maker is easier when you know what to look out for and how to go about it. If you are wondering how you could get the best nugget ice machine, we have in this section, a list of a few things that you need to take note of when you are out shopping for the best nugget ice maker:
- Ease of use: Some ice-making machines feature indicator lights or alarm and other easy to use buttons, while others are a little more complicated to operate. If you are not a tech-savvy person, and you need an ice maker that you would be able to operate on your own, you should go for ice-making machines with simple functions.
- Portability: Portability is an important point to consider when choosing the best nugget ice maker, this is because some ice makers are bigger and heavier than others. If you need a stationary ice maker, you might not need to worry much but if you intend to move your ice maker here and there, then you need a portable ice-making machine.
- Nugget or cube maker: Your choice of an ice maker is also determined by the type of ice you prefer. Some machines make nugget ice, some make sonic ice while some make both. The two are different in texture. While sonic ice is as hard as a rock, nugget ice is almost the direct opposite, soft and fine balls of ice. However, you should note that nugget ice melts easier and faster while sonic ice generally lasts longer.
- Ice making capacity: Different ice-making machines have different ice making capacities. While some make more ice in a day, others make less ice and if you love throwing a party or hosting a lot of guests, then you should consider getting an ice maker with a large and fast ice-making capacity of as much as 50 lbs. in 24 hours.
- Design: Like any other product, Ice making machines come in different colors, shape, and designs, while some are housed in stainless steel covers, others come in red, blue, and other eye-appealing colors and this is where your preference comes in. You should choose an ice maker that suits your décor and appeals to you the most.
- Price tag: The price tag of an ice maker is another very important point to take note of. Some ice makers are less-pricier than others and this does not necessarily mean that they are entirely bad. We advise that you choose an ice maker with good and fair-enough quality that fits within your budget.
The Best Nugget Ice Maker of 2021
GE Profile Opal – Editor’s choice
- OPAL NUGGET ICE, THE GOOD ICE - Serve up chewable, crunchable, craveable nugget ice that's ready fast and retains its flavor,...
- 24 POUNDS OF ICE PER DAY - Never run out of nugget ice; This ice maker produces one pound of fresh ice per hour and has a...
- SMART - Built-In Bluetooth Connectivity: Schedule fresh ice, monitor your ice maker’s status and order accessories, all...
GE Profile Opal comes on top of our list of the best nugget ice makers. It stands out as a portable and premium model that is equipped with outstanding ice making features.
If you crave soft and chewable ice to grace the top of your favorite drinks, then GE profile opal might just be what you need.
The ice nugget maker works by freezing water into solid ice cubes and scraping the ice flakes formed at the sides of the gas cylinder before discharging the soft and crispy light ice formed through an outlet that is built for that purpose.
- Portable size: GE profile opal comes in a portable design that makes it easy to bundle from one point to another when necessary. The petite-sized machine can be plugged into any standard 120v grounded electrical outlet after filling the reservoir with water.
- Elegant design: GE profile opal is built with class and style. The machine has a measurement of 15.5 x 14.25 x 17.2 inches and would sit pretty on your countertop without taking up too much space.
- Speedy and powerful performance ice maker: In a total of 20 minutes, the machine produces soft and crunchy ice from rock-solid ice. The powerful performance machine produces 1 lb. of crushed ice in an hour and 24 lbs. of ice in 24 hours.
- GE Profile Opal App: GE profile opal features inbuilt Bluetooth connectivity that allows you set up your ice making schedule, and monitor your ice maker using the free GE Profile Opal App which can be downloaded and accessed on your mobile device.
- Large ice making capacity: GE profile opal is large enough to hold 4 lbs. of ice at once, providing you with all of the ice that you would need for your favorite drinks.
- Smart ice-making system: The machine features a smart refill system that automatically comes on once you are running low on ice, ensuring that ice is readily made available for your needs. The smart system also stops producing ice automatically once it senses that the bin is filled up.
- Easily attached side tank: GE Profile Opal also features a side tank that can easily be attached to the ice maker to enable it to produce 3 times more ice.
- No water hookup is required.
- Sleek and stylish design.
- Portable size.
- Smart functions
- GE Profile Opal App
- LED indicator
- Produces soft and fine-textured ice.
- It is expensive (but it is worth it).
IKICH Portable Ice Maker Machine
As the name portends, IKICH Portable Ice Maker Machine is a portable blender and it is one of our best small pellet ice makers.
It has a sleek and portable design that beautifully graces your kitchen countertop. It is an easy and smart ice making machine that works quietly and efficiently, producing soft quality ice with the perfect soft texture in no time, so that you can enjoy your favorite beverages with ice floating on the surface.
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- Transparent viewing window: The machine features a transparent viewing channel where you can observe the ice in the ice basket without necessarily opening the lid. The channel is resistant to stains and very easy to clean.
- Smart indicator: It also features 2 infrared sensors that notify you when the water reservoir needs some refilling and when the ice basket is full. The ice maker stops at once the ice basket is full to allow you to refill the water reservoir and collect the processed ice as at when due.
- Fast and simple mode of operation: The machine produces large and small-sized ice depending on your preference. It churns out a total of 9 pieces of bullet-shaped ice-cubes in 6 minutes and a total of 28 lbs. of ice in a day.
- Easy to clean: IKICH Portable Ice Maker Machine is easy to clean once the ice-maker is disconnected from a power source, and emptied. With a damp towel, you can dab the machine clean and allow it to dry. It also features a drain plug that allows you to easily clean and drain the machine.
- Portable size: IKICH Portable Ice Maker is a portable sized machine that would not take up too much of your space, especially if you don’t have too much to spare. It would be a smart fit for your countertop.
- Quiet powerful performance machine: The machine features a built-in spoiler that reduces unnecessary noise. The machine delivers excellent performance without making so much noise like other regular machines.
- Ice scoop and Basket: IKICH Portable Ice Maker Machine also features a removable ice scoop and basket which allows you to conveniently and neatly transfer ice cubes into your favorite drinks.
- Fast ice making time
- A lightweight and portable piece
- No loud noise
- Rapid cooling and good insulation
- Transparent viewing channels
- Small ice making capacity
Black+Decker BIMY126S Ice Maker
Black+Decker BIMY126S Ice Maker is the real game-changer, it is one of our best nugget ice machines. Whether you want large sized chunks of ice or tiny ones, this BIMY126S Ice Maker has you covered.
The machine is also easy to operate and delivers excellently well. Its sleek stainless steel casing is sure to give your space a beautiful and elegant look.
- HIGH VOLUME ICE MAKER: Countertop ice machine produces up to 26 pounds of ice in 24 hours and offers a max housing capacity...
- STAINLESS STEEL HOUSING: Sleek and lustrous stainless steel housing adds a stylish décor and modern look with an easy to...
- EASY TO USE CONTROLS: Portable ice machine features electronic controls with LCD display that indicates ice cube size, add...
- Makes 3 sizes of ice: The machine makes ice in small, medium, and large sizes depending on the function you choose, so you can have your favorite iced drinks as you prefer.
- Sleek and classy design: Black Decker BIMY126S Ice Maker comes in a modern and stylish design, packaged in a stainless-steel casing, and would add a beautiful glam to your kitchen or any other place you chose to keep it.
- Electronic control functions/ LCD Display: Black Decker BIMY126S Ice Maker features electronic touch controls alongside an LCD for easy management of the ice-making machine, helping you to stay updated and in control all the way.
- Portable size: The ice maker comes in a portable size that would grace your countertop without taking up too much space.
- Easy mode of operation: Black Decker BIMY126S Ice Maker is easy to set up and manage, with smart and easy to understand functions.
- Fast ice-making machine: The machine is fast and efficient, producing 9 ice cubes in 10 minutes and up to 26 pounds of ice in 24 hours. The machine can contain up to 1.76 lbs. of ice at once.
- Ice scoop and basket: Black Decker BIMY126S Ice Maker also features an ice scoop and basket for transferring ice flakes from the machine into your drinks or your preferred containers.
- Speedy ice making time.
- Space-saving piece
- Makes 3 sizes of ice
- Fashionable and modernized design
- It makes loud beep sounds
Frigidaire EFIC101-Black Ice Making Machine – The most affordable option
Frigidaire EFIC101-Black Ice Making Machine is one of our best portable nugget ice makers. The machine is incredibly lightweight and super-efficient.
It makes 9 cubes of ice in 7 to 15 minutes and up to 26 lb of ice per day.
It stands out on our list as a special machine that makes super clear ice cubes, unlike other machines and this is what we love about it the most. It is our most affordable option.
- Convenient, compact design is ideal for use in small kitchens & other compact spaces like RVs, boats & more
- Produces 26 pounds of ice a day - never run to the store for a bag of ice again
- Offers an easy-to-use LED control panel that allows you to choose from 2 ice size settings
- Transparent windows: Frigidaire EFIC101-Black Ice Making Machine features a large and transparent window that allows you to see what is going on with the ice maker without opening the lid.
- Easy to clean: The machine is very easy to clean. It also comes with an easy to use drain plug that allows you to easily drain the ice-making machine after cleaning.
- LED panel: It also features a LED control panel that gives you access to different functions including choosing your preferred or size.
- Clear Ice Cubes: Unlike most ice-making machines, Frigidaire EFIC101-Black Ice Making Machine churns out crystal clear Ice cubes and that is one of the things we love about this machine.
- Ice Shovel and basket: There is also an ice Shovel and basket that allows you to shave the ice smoothly and hygienically for your favorite drinks or preferred containers.
- 2 Ice size setting: Frigidaire EFIC101-Black Ice Making Machine features 2 Ice size settings, so you can make large and small-sized ice cubes as the occasion demands.
- Easy to use: The ice making machine is easy to start up and manage. All you need to do is to plug the machine into a source of power, add water, and allow it to cool up for about 15 minutes.
- Beautiful design: Frigidaire Ice Making Machine comes in beautiful and portable designs with different ranges of colors and sizes to choose from. We love varieties and this model gives just that.
- Easy to use
- Crystal clear ice cubes
- Transparent windows
- Portable piece
- Needs to be cleaned often.
NewAir AI-100R Portable Ice Maker
NewAir Portable AI-100R Ice Maker is one of our best nugget ice machines. It is a portable piece with amazing and easy-to-use features that qualifies it to be an excellent ice maker including light indicators, a side-mount drain, and more.
If you want a machine that is fast and simple to use, you should check this out.
- Choose from 3 bullet ice cube sizes
- Makes up to 28 pounds of ice per day
- Side mounted drain makes it easy to empty unused water
- Easy to use: The machine features an electronic panel that is incredibly easy to use alongside light indicators and push-button functions that notifies you when your ice is ready and when it is running out of water.
- Elegant design: NewAir AI-100R Portable Ice Maker comes in a sleek hot red color, a nice shape, and a portable size that would sit neatly on your countertop without taking too much of your space.
- Simple to clean: The machine features a side-mounted drain that makes its cleaning easy and fast.
- Fast ice maker: With NewAir AI-100R Portable Ice Maker, you don’t have to wait so long to get ice for your drinks as it makes 6 ice cubes in 15 minutes and up to 28 pounds of ice in 24 hours.
- 3 cube sizes: The ice making machine also allows you to choose the size of your ice cubes, so you can select either large, medium, or small ice cubes as you desire.
- Removable tray and ice scoop: It also features a removable tray and ice scooper that allows you to easily remove and transfer ready-made ice.
- Portable machine
- Easy to use and clean
- 3 ice cube size
- Does not make an annoying sound
- Few technical issues
- Ice might melt quickly.
NewAir Al-215SS Portable Ice Maker
NewAir Al-215SS Portable Ice Maker is one of our most classy options. It is super fast and it has an incredibly large ice making capacity of about 50 pounds in 24 hours.
It is one ice maker that you can trust to give you the perfect texture of ice to accompany your favorite beverages. It is one of our best portable nugget ice makers.
- Makes up to 50 pounds of ice per day
- Makes up to 12 pieces of ice in as little as 7 minutes
- Automatic shut off & overflow protection
- Portable and classy machine: The machine comes in a compact size and an elegant stainless-steel design that would blend with your apartment decor and sit nicely on your tabletop.
- Self-cleaning: NewAir Al-215SS Portable Ice Maker comes in a design that is easy to maintain and keep clean.
- 3 Ice cube sizes: The machine is capable of churning out ice cubes in 3 different sizes, giving you the option of choosing the one you most prefer.
- Easy to Use: NewAir Al-215SS Portable Ice Maker features simple functions and an LED display that allows you to easily manage the machine.
- Fast ice making machine: The machine is super fast in making ice. You can get 12 pieces of ice in 7 minutes and up to 50 pounds of ice in 24 hours which is super-incredible.
- Light Indicator: NewAir Al-215SS Portable Ice Maker features light indicators that alert you when the water reservoir is empty and when your ice is ready.
- Ice scooper and bin: It also comes with an ice scooper and basket for harvesting and transporting ready ice.
- Makes up to 50 pounds of ice in 24 hours
- Self-cleaning machine
- Easy to use and manage
- Long-lasting ice nuggets.
- Heavy machine.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What type of ice-making machines make sonic ice?
Any good sonic ice or nugget maker can make sonic ice cubes. All our portable ice maker options can make good sonic ice. Some ice makers even make them in different sizes, depending on your preference.
What is the best nugget ice machine?
The best nugget ice making machine are the ones that make little or no loud noise and churn out soft and fine ice within a considerably short time. We have 6 of them in this review and they all have what it takes to make soft and crispy ice balls.
Can I use my nugget ice maker outdoors?
Of course, you can, portable nugget ice makers can be used anywhere so long as there is a power source to plug them into. Its portable size makes it very easy to move around. However, avoid using it in places with high temperatures to prevent the rapid melting of the nugget ice.
What is the difference between ice production capacity and ice storage capacity?
The ice production capacity of an ice maker is the quantity of ice that it can produce within 24 hours, some ice-making machines can produce up to 50 lbs. in 24 hours, others make less. Ice storage capacity on the other hand is the maximum quantity of ice that an ice-making machine can hold at a time.
What is the main importance of a nugget ice machine?
The rock-solid ice is not easy to chew as it is extremely harsh to the teeth, nugget ice is the soft version with the same cooling effect and this is where a nugget ice machine comes in. A nugget ice machine helps you to make soft chewable ice in a few minutes to grace your favorite drinks and beverages.
How small are portable ice makers?
Portable ice-making machines are small enough to sit comfortably on a countertop or tabletop yet large enough to hold a considerable quantity of ice per time. There are quite a number of them and we have some of the best options on our list.