Manual ice crushers are simple-to-use, cost-efficient, and portable units for making ice needed for the preparation of cocktails and garnishing food. Some models come with an integrated handle. Turning the handle clockwise produces ice. Some models are hand-cranked and others come in the form of a mallet.
It is challenging to find the best manual ice crusher among so many brands. There is Nuvantee, VICTORIO, Viski, Westmark, Winco, WineNeeds, and others. Each brand has advantages and disadvantages that need to be considered.
To find the best manual ice crusher, factors such as type, construction, blades, switch, and warranty should be taken into account. This manual ice crusher buying guide includes all these factors.
The best manual ice crushers are listed below:
- Rabbit Retro Manual Ice Crusher
- VICTORIO VKP1126 Portable Hand Crank Ice Crusher
- Viski 4371 Professional Lewis Bag and Mallet and Bartender Kit
- Westmark Germany Manual Ice Crusher
- Winco ICP-9 Manual Portable Ice Crusher
- Kitchen Rite Manual Ice Crusher
Best Manual Ice Crushers Comparison Chart
Rabbit Retro Manual Ice Crusher
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VICTORIO VKP1126 Portable Hand Crank Ice Crusher
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Viski 4371 Professional Lewis Bag and Mallet and Bartender Kit
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Westmark Germany Manual Ice Crusher
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Winco ICP-9 Manual Portable Ice Crusher
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Kitchen Rite Manual Ice Crusher
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Best Manual Ice Crushers Reviews (Updated List)
1. Rabbit Retro Manual Ice Crusher
Rabbit Retro is a brand behind many thoughtfully designed and manufactured household items. This manual ice crusher features a 1950’s look. It can produce coarse and finely crushed ice used for drinks or food displays.
The Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher is hand-operated and easy to use. It weighs 3lbs only and is very compact and portable. The bowl color is optional – clear or red.
The Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher is priced at around $25 to $43.
Rabbit Retro provides a lifetime warranty on all of the moving parts of this manual ice crusher.
The Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher has a plastic base, while the heavy-duty all-metal top is polished with chrome and resistant to rust. The blades are made of stainless steel and are extremely sharp.
The Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher should be cleaned after every use. All of the parts can be cleaned using warm, soapy water and a cloth.
The Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher can crush around ¼ of ice in several minutes. The bowl can be used as an ice bucket.
The advantages of Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher are as follows:
- The Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher can easily crush standard to larger ice cubes.
- The Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher can crush ice of different textures – coarse to fine.
- The all-metal top makes the Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher more stable.
The disadvantages of Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher are as follows:
- The Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher is the most expensive unit in the manual ice crusher category.
- The crank handle is a bit flimsy and the Rabbit Retro manual ice crusher should be held tight while crushing ice.
2. VICTORIO VKP1126 Portable Hand Crank Ice Crusher
The VICTORIO VKP1126 manual ice crusher produces ice ideal for drinks, cocktails, and platters. It is mostly used in homes, bars, and RVs. Its compact size makes it easy to use, store, and move around.
The VICTORIO VKP1126 manual ice crusher comes with a sturdy suction base that prevents it from moving while crushing the ice. Cranking the handle even when crushing larger chunks of ice is hassle-free. However, it is advisable to use this unit mostly for crushing standard-size ice cubes.
The VICTORIO VKP1126 manual ice crusher is priced at around $50.
The VICTORIO VKP1126 manual ice crusher is backed up with a generous 5-year warranty.
The VICTORIO VKP1126 is equipped with a chrome-plated steel handle and sharp stainless steel blades. The rest of the unit is made of plastic.
The VICTORIO VKP1126 is easy to clean with soap and water, then dried with a soft cloth.
The VICTORIO VKP1126 has an average capacity of producing 4 cups of crushed ice per day.
The advantages of VICTORIO VKP1126 are as follows:
- The VICTORIO VKP1126 manual ice crusher is extremely lightweight, compact, and portable.
- Although the VICTORIO VKP1126 manual ice crusher is mostly made of plastic, it is still very sturdy and durable.
- The cranking mechanism of the VICTORIO VKP1126 manual ice crusher is easy to operate.
The disadvantages of VICTORIO VKP1126 are as follows:
- If the VICTORIO VKP1126 manual ice crusher is not well dried after cleaning, the handle will start showing rust.
Read More: VICTORIO VKP1126
3. Viski 4371 Professional Lewis Bag and Mallet and Bartender Kit
The Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit consists of a Lewis bag and a mallet. This ice crushing kit allows crushing ice to different preferences and for different drinks – daiquiris, mint juleps, and more.
The Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit boasts an ergonomic design that ensures crushing ice doesn’t put pressure on the wrist. Once a new batch of crushed ice is made, the Lewis bag dries very quickly and can be reused shortly for another round. This also results in producing dryer ice.
The price of Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit is around $25.
The Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit comes with no warranty but it is proven to be extremely durable. With no pieces to break, it could last for a lifetime.
The Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit includes a lightweight beechwood mallet that can easily crush ice. The canvas bag is also made of natural material and has a convenient flap closure.
The Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit needs no special cleaning. The bag can be rinsed with clear water every few months or washed in the washing machine.
The Lewis bag included in this Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit has ½ to 1lbs capacity.
The advantages of Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit are as follows:
- The Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit is made of natural materials – beechwood and canvas that are both durable and safe for use.
- The canvas bag included in the Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit absorbs water so the ice is crispier and dier.
- The Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit is almost maintenance-free.
The disadvantages of Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit are as follows:
- The Viski 4371 manual ice crusher kit’s canvas bag may tear if it is constantly filled with too much ice.
4. Westmark Germany Manual Ice Crusher
Westmark is a popular brand from Germany that sells kitchenware, barware, and other home household items. The Westmark manual ice crusher is a high-quality unit that can produce ice for mixed drinks and cocktails.
The Westmark manual ice crusher has an ergonomic handle that makes it easy to use and to crush ice. It can quickly deliver new small portions of small ice.
The price of Westmark manual ice crusher is around $22.
Westmark provides a 5-year warranty on this manual ice crusher while it is proven to last for a lifetime.
The Westmark manual ice crusher’s base and handle are both made of heavy cast aluminum that is resistant to rust and very durable.
The Westmark manual ice crusher should be occasionally washed with clear water and dried with a cloth. It can be washed in the dishwasher as well.
The Westmark manual ice crusher is designed to produce small amounts of ice. It can crush 2 ice cubes at once.
The advantages of Westmark manual ice crusher are as follows:
- The Westmark manual ice crusher is lightweight and easy to crush the ice with.
- The durable and sturdy, the Westmark manual ice crusher practically indestructible heavy cast aluminum construction.
- The Westmark manual ice crusher is dishwasher-safe.
The disadvantages of Westmark manual ice crusher are as follows:
- It can’t produce larger amounts of ice.
5. Winco ICP-9 Manual Portable Ice Crusher
Winco is a US kitchenware brand selling fry and cake pans, rice and soup warmers, and ice crushers. This Winco manual ice crusher works best for homes, bars, and drink stations. The ice it produces can also be used for shellfish.
The Winco manual ice crusher is a lightweight and portable unit that produces coarse or fine ice. It is equipped with an easy-to-operate crank handle. The ice crushing mechanism can easily crack standard to large ice cubes in seconds.
The price of Winco manual ice crusher is around $21.
Winco provides a 1-year warranty on this manual ice crusher.
The Winco manual ice crusher’s body is made of plastic. The blades are made of stainless steel and the handle is made of durable metal.
The Winco manual ice crusher is easy to clean. The stainless steel blades are rust-resistant and can be washed with pure water. The handle should be properly dried when cleaning the unit.
The Winco manual ice crusher can ideally produce up to 4lbs of ice in 24 hours.
The advantages of Winco manual ice crusher are as follows:
- The lightweight and compact construction of the Winco manual ice crusher machine make it portable and easy to move and store.
- The stainless steel blades of the the Winco manual ice crusher easily cut through ice cubes.
- The Winco manual ice crusher is hand-crank operated and can produce as much ice as needed.
The disadvantages of Winco manual ice crusher are as follows:
- The plastic body of the Winco manual ice crusher can become brittle after some time of use.
6. Kitchen Rite Manual Ice Crusher
The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher is an easy-turn unit that produces ice cubes into coarse to fine ice needed for refreshing drinks and desserts. As it is lightweight and portable, it can be used at home or for tailgating, boating, and camping.
The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher has a non-slip base that gives it stability while the crank is operated. As the ice gets crushed, it gets stored in a transparent bowl. This bowl can be used as an ice bucket or for storing perishable foods.
The price of Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher is around 25$.
The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher is backed up with a 1-year warranty.
The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher has BPA-free plastic construction. The blades are made of high-quality stainless steel that provides the utmost precision and easily cuts through ice cubes. The plastic crank is located on the side and it can be removed.
The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher should be washed with warm water and soap and dried before the next use.
The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher can produce 2.2lbs of ice in one shot.
The advantages of The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher are as follows:
- Because of its weight and compact size, the Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher can be used anywhere.
- The transparent bowl makes it easy to check the level of ice in the Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher.
- The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher’ bowl has a large capacity compared to other manual ice crushers and can be used to store ice.
The disadvantages of The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher are as follows:
- The Kitchen Rite manual ice crusher’s bowl may crack if dropped to the floor.
Advantages of Manual Ice Crushers
Here are just a couple of benefits of owning a manual ice crusher:
1. Becoming a Skilled Cocktail Master
Obviously, having a manual ice crusher will make you want to prepare mixed drinks almost daily. Cocktails are in trend during the summer and winter months. Yet, are you familiar with ice making techniques? This tool can help you become a skilled cocktail master who knows how to garnish drinks for the family or guests.
Yet, keep in mind that crushed ice melts quite rapidly and you should be careful with decorating. It takes time to earn some skill in making cocktails. Make sure to make them yummy and garnish them in just a couple of seconds so your guests can actually see and taste your effort.
2. Simplicity Of Use
Manual ice crushers are quite simple to use. You add the desired amount of ice, move the crank, and that’s it. We have mentioned another type of manual crusher that comes with a mallet that is even simpler to use. All you have to do is to add some ice into the bag, seal it, and crush it with a mallet. It all depends on the design you prefer – rugged or fancy.
3. Serving Varieties
With some manual ice crushers, you can set the desired thickness and fineness of the ice. This can be extremely useful if you own a bar, café, or restaurant as you will need different forms of ice for making different drinks or garnishing cold plates.
Manual ice crushers come at a relatively low cost but they provide much greater value. If you are tight on the budget for any of the shaved ice machines, a manual tool might be the best alternative.
You are not confined to making cocktails at your home or a bar only. Manual tools are compact and lightweight you can carry them wherever you go. If you like camping or beach partying, you can take it with you and enjoy your drinks outdoors.
What Is a Manual Ice Crusher?
A manual ice crusher is a useful tool in any kitchen – whether it be private or commercial. The biggest benefit of manual crushers is that you can step out of the shell and tailor-make ice for drinks that go best with finer texture.
For instance, the best industrial ice makers are great for making ice cubes but sometimes, you will need crisp and fresh ice. Whiskey, Punch Romaine, Gin-Gin Mule, Crush, and Swizzle – if you want to meet your guests’ or customers’ expectations, crushed ice is a must-have in your kitchen.
Yet, you might be using crushed ice for other purposes than just preparing cocktails. Bars and restaurants need it for garnishing seafood.
We guess you don’t want to hurt yourself crushing ice by hand and hurt yourself. A manual ice crusher is quite simple to use and saves you a lot of effort. Depending on your crushing needs, you can get a tool with a mallet or the one that comes with an integrated handle you operate in order to crush the desired amount of ice.
Either way, manual ice crushers require very little to no effort and crush your ice in a precise manner without making a mess in your kitchen. Manually operated, you need no electricity to make iced-based drinks.
Crushed Ice vs Ice Cubes
If you are having second thoughts about whether you need your ice crushed or cubed, the following lines can help you find your perfect pick.
1. Crushed Ice Melts At a Speed Rate.
One of the best and, at the same time, the worst things about crushed ice is that it melts away faster than ice cubes do. Now, some people don’t mind this at all as they like their drinks diluted. If sipping drinks for hours in a café seems boring and you take no more 5 to 10 minutes to have a glass, crushed ice is for you.
On the other hand, ice cubes melt at a more constant speed, allowing your drink to stay cooler for a lot longer and dissolve it slowly.
2. Ice Eaters Love Crushed Ice.
Let’s be honest – have you ever tried to crush an ice cube? Would you risk breaking your teeth? We either. That is why crushed ice makes a better choice for people who find crushing the ice with their teeth satisfying. If you would have to choose between pieces of ice of manageable size and ice cubes, which way would you go/
3. Crushed Ice Cuts Through Overly-Sweet Drinks.
If you have a sweet tooth, run away from crushed ice as fast as you can – ice cubes are the way to go. However, some people like the chemistry happening between a sweet drink and crushed ice. It can balance out the excessive sugar content in cocktails or Coca-Cola and make your glass more potable. Crushed ice goes very well with bourbon as well.
Types Of Ice Crushers
We are talking about manual ice crushers in this guide. Yet, we have two subcategories of this tool and electric variants as well. Here are a couple of sentences about each and their benefits and disadvantages.
1. Hand Crank Ice Crusher
Most products we reviewed above fall into this subcategory. Not powered by electricity, these units are easy to use and efficient as long as your wrists don’t feel the pressure. If you have low to moderate needs for crushed ice and would use some storage capacity, there is no reason to look any further from this type.
2. Handheld Mallet and a Bag Ice Crusher Kit
Some people want to enjoy their cocktail making experience to the fullest. Handheld ice crushers are made of wood, which approves of their quality and durability. Although we don’t doubt their sturdiness it is a bit tricky to crush large amounts of ice with a mallet. That is why this type of manual tool makes a great choice for households who need crushed ice occasionally.
Did you know you can use your blender to crush ice? Well, some specialty blenders support this function if they are sturdy enough. This option can be convenient for occasional use, so keep your eye on blenders for ice crushing.
4. Ice Crushing Machines
If you need batches of crushed ice for commercial use, the electrical machine might be the best choice for your needs. These units can crush several pounds per hour and feature higher capacities than hand-crank ice crushers. Yet, the costs of top-quality ice crushing machines can make you a bit dizzy.
Manual Ice Crusher Buying Guide
To choose the right tool for crushing ice, you should have some of the basic features in mind. There is a lot to consider before making the final decision. Take a look at the following factors when looking for your next manual ice crusher.
We have already listed two types of manual ice crushers – hand crank and mallet kit. Which one should you choose? This depends on your crushed ice needs. If you don’t need a commercial-grade tool, a mallet kit might be a good choice.
On the other hand, if you like throwing parties at the pool or need something to help you elevate your cocktail game, a hand crank ice crusher is a better solution.
Some factors clearly point out to durability or a manual ice crusher. One of these factors includes materials used to make this unit. Doubtless, stainless steel boasts the longest lifespan as it is sturdy and resistant to rust.
Your second option here is a crusher made of plastic, which can be a relatively good choice if you find one made of sturdy and tough plastic. Last but not least, wood (such as beechwood) can last for at least a couple of years.
If you don’t want to go for a wooden kit or classic manual crusher, that means you should be looking for a hand crank unit with sharp blades. Blades integrated into manual ice crushers are mostly made of stainless steel that ensures high efficiency and precision. This means they are resistant to wear and rust. Detachable, stainless steel blades are super-easy to clean and reattach.
Does your ice crusher come with an on/off switch? Well, it should, as this switch ensures your safety while taking the ice out. Make sure to press the switch beforehand add ice and once you are happy with the amount in it. If you don’t turn the switch off on time, sharp blades can hurt your fingers.
Most tools on the market come with a bit short warranties. However, one of the models we reviewed comes with a 5-year warranty and the other comes with a lifetime warranty. If you want to have your peace of mind with your new manual ice crusher, these tools might be your best picks.
However, the rest of the manual ice crushers in our reviews are quite inexpensive, which can compensate for the warranty duration.
- Never use your brand new manual ice crusher before reading the owner’s manual beforehand. Each unit is different and you should get familiar with the instructions on time if you want to prevent injuries.
- Switch off your ice crusher before taking the ice out.
- Don’t touch crushed ice with bare hands as it can be very sharp. Instead, use a glass or a handy scoop.
FAQ About Manual Ice Crushers
1. Can I Use My Manual Ice Crusher To Make Snow Cones?
You can, although electrical machines produce ice of better texture for snow cones. Ice crushed with a manual machine is slightly more convenient for garnishing seafood and making cocktails.
2. Can I Put Flavored Ice Cubes In My Manual Ice Crusher?
Absolutely. Manual machines work great with any type of ice – including flavored ice.
3. How To Clean My Manual Ice Crusher?
Different tools require different cleaning techniques. Some models are dishwasher-safe, others can be washed in the sink. Check the owner’s manual to find the right cleaning instructions.
4. Can You Make Crushed Ice In a Blender?
If you have the right machine, of course, you can! Sturdy and well-built blenders can handle ice cubes and crush them effortlessly. Add a couple of cubes into your blender, place the lid on, and press the button a couple of times. Short bursts will crush your cubes precisely. If you want fine-crushed ice, press the button for 2 to 3 times more. You can use your food processor for crushing ice as well.
If you want to master the art of decorating cocktails, frozen drinks, and various dishes, the best manual ice crusher can help you on this mission.
We have included the top-notch products to our manual ice crusher reviews only so you can get the most of this experience. Portable, manual-operated, lightweight – these units make it easy to crush some ice wherever you are – at home, camping, throwing a party on your boat. Still, don’t forget to check out our other ice-making guides.