The Best Ice Cream Scoop:
Ice Cream Scoops Reviewed
Looking for the best ice cream scoop around? Here’s where you find it.
We reviewed a large variety of ice cream scoops of different types to come up with those we think dish up a scoop of ice cream the best.
There are two basic kinds of ice cream utensils: the scoop and the ice cream spade.
If you’re looking to dish up larger amounts of ice cream than a standard scoop can manage, and don’t particularly care about making a perfectly round scoop of ice cream, you might prefer an ice cream spade. Click here for our review of the best ice cream spades.
Ice Cream Scoops
Ice cream scoops come in two kinds – simple deep spoon-like utensils and those with either a swivel blade or lever that helps push the ice cream out of the spoon. Within those two categories, manufactures have come up with a remarkable variety of contraptions.
Some scoops are self-warming: They’re filled with anti-freeze to make it easier to scoop through hard ice cream. Some have a non-stick coating so the scoop of ice cream will fall out of the spoon more easily. Some are, frankly, just artifacts that would look nice in a museum of modern art, but are pretty useless in the kitchen.
We’ve gone through a lot of funky scoops in our day (and thrown away more than we can count!). Here are the keepers - the ice cream scoops we like the best:
Best Ice Cream Scoop - Self-Warming Models:
These definitely have the edge over standard scoops. These utensils are filled with fluid which conducts the body heat from your hand through the spoon. The warmed scoop can thus slice through frozen ice cream more easily. No need to dip your scoop in warm water between scoops anymore. This is actually quite helpful for people with arthritis in their hands, as this kind of scoop requires much less strength.
Our favorite: The Zeroll Scoop
This is the original self-warming scoop. It was patented in 1933 and has been made since 1935. It comes in two versions, the Original Zeroll, in aluminum, pictured above, and a Teflon coated model called the Zerolon, pictured below.
The Zerolon’s Teflon coating is intended to protect the aluminum finish from the corrosive effects of hard water, and has the advantage of being non-stick, so the ice cream is released from the scoop a bit more easily. Both models come in 6 sizes, which range from 1-ounce to 4-ounce scoops. Being purists, we stick to the Original Zeroll, which has become the industry standard. It’s only drawback: it isn’t dishwasher safe.
We think you’ll find the 3-ounce and the 2-ounce ounce models the scoops you’ll reach for the most. These things will last for decades.
We haven’t tried the Zerolon Teflon models, but we hear great things about them from colleagues, who love the 2-ounce and the 3-ounce models as much as we love the original version.
The Zeroll scoops are definitely our first choice for the best ice cream scoop in the self-warming category.
Our favorite value scoop in this category: The Norpro Nonstick Anti-Freeze Ice Cream Scoop
The simple plastic construction makes this an inexpensive, but solid value purchase. The nonstick surface releases the ice cream nicely and it has the advantages of more expensive aluminum self-warming scoops. One drawback – over time, the nonstick coating can get scratched or peel off. However, this scoop is cheap enough that it can be easily replaced when and if that happens.
Best Ice Cream Scoop - Standard Models
Our favorite: The Cuisinart Ice Cream Scoop
This is a functional and attractive piece of equipment that proves simplicity is often the best way to go. The stainless steel head has a pointed tip that makes it easier to dig into hard ice cream. The handle is made of sturdy plastic and is comfortable to hold. It’s dishwasher safe, easy to clean and has an eye in the handle so you can hang it on a rack. It’s also covered by a 5-year warranty.
So the best ice cream scoop among standard models is yet another Cuisinart product that rises to the top. We give it a thumbs up!
Runner up: The Zyliss Ice Cream Scoop
This best selling scoop is one hefty spoon, built to last. The nice feature is the sturdy thumb rest on the non-slip plastic handle which lets you really bear down on the thing as you dig into a frozen pint. It’s covered by a 5-year warranty and comes in cool colors and makes perfectly round balls.
The Zyliss ice cream scoop didn’t quite make it as our best ice cream scoop in the standard category because the finish isn’t nearly as durable as it should be. Although it is supposed to be machine washable, the bowl’s metal finish wears off even with hand washing. Customer reviews at Amazon seem to confirm this, too. Nevertheless, this one of their best selling and most often reviewed scoops.
Best Ice Cream Scoop - Mechanical Models
This type of scoop has a blade that swings across the bowl of the spoon, supposedly releasing the ice cream into your bowl. We say "supposedly", because we’ve found most of these kinds of models don’t really work very well for ice cream. Melon balls, cookie dough, maybe, but not ice cream. However, we have found two that do a great job.Our favorite: The 2-ounce, blue-handled Zeroll Universal EZ Disher
This utensil is used worldwide by food service establishments to serve all kinds of food – not just ice cream. It comes in 13 color-coded sizes. There’s no spring, so this scoop is far more durable than most other mechanical ones. The 2-ounce, blue-handled Universal EZ Disher is perfect for ice cream. The handle is easy to use – it’s designed for people who dish out food all day long – and since there’s no spring action, there’s no nasty recoil. Unlike most swing-blade scoopers, this one actually releases the food effortlessly. An industrial product, it is built to last a long, long time.
Hands down the best ice cream scoop in the mechanical category.
Our favorite value: The 4-Tablespoon size Norpro Stainless Mechanical Scoop
Like the EZ Disher, this is not marketed specifically for ice cream. It’s meant to serve whatever you want, but it does a good job for our purposes. The stainless steel construction is solid and won’t corrode like chrome-plated models. A good value.
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