Before you ask what is a slushie machine, you must first look at what a “slushie” is. Slushies are, in short, flavored ice that has been busted and crushed to the point that it is snow-like in texture. This icy drink is great for cooling off on hot summer days. It can be used with sodas, syrups, smoothies, and even alcoholic beverages. Adults and kids alike can all enjoy them.
Now, we can go back to what exactly a slushie machine is. They are machines that freeze ice into a slush consistency rather than a hard block, using whatever beverage or mix you may put inside of it. It maintains the icy crystal texture so that you can sip the coldness through a straw or slurp it off a spoon.
How the Slushie Got Its Start
To give you an even better understanding of what these machines, and the beverages they make, are all about, we will take a look deeper into this topic. We will travel back in time to the 1950s when Omar Knedlik stumbled upon a drink that would change summer forever.
How did he stumble? A soda fountain broke and he ended up putting his soda flavors into the freezer. The goal was to keep them cool. However, it caused them to turn into slush, which people loved as soon as he served it to them. A little lightbulb went off and soon, Knedlik was looking for a way to make machines that could create soft frozen drinks.
He incorporated the help of Ruth E. Taylor, to create a marketing logo and name for his unique machine. Together they came up with ICEE, which is still the logo we see today. By 1965, ICEE machines were put into 7-Eleven stores. Other slushie-type machines and products were released over time, and, as they say, the rest is history.
Today, we can have slushie machines in our homes, in restaurants, corner stores, carnivals, and more. Some are personal use slushie machines and others are elaborate machines that can be used in any commercial setting. We find it ironic that something so much fun, was invented because of a fluke.
Slushie Making: Enjoying the Cooler Things in Life
It is easy to use a machine to create delicious flavor combinations. The machine flavors are typically going to include syrup or a mixture of sugar, water, flavoring, and coloring. If you have a machine that is designed for home or personal use, you may also need to add ice to the machine. Personal slushie machines do not typically freeze. Instead, they will crush the ice that you add.
Whether you have a commercial machine or a home-use one, you add the ice, flavoring, and turn it on. Some machines will work in just a few minutes, while commercial machines can take up to 60-minutes to achieve perfect “slush”.
Home use slushie machines will have to be enjoyed once they are finished achieving the right consistency. Commercial slushie makers, with a larger-sized hopper and augers that keep it moving consistently, will often have a refrigeration system in them that keeps them ready for when you are ready to enjoy it.
Is a Slushie Machine Worth Considering for Your Home or Business?
Much the same as Knedlik created a slushie machine by freezing soda, you can also do it. In most homes, it will take a longer time to create slushies through freezing them, but it is possible. You will need to have freezer space, a favorite soda, and be willing to let it sit in the freezer for a couple of hours.
You will need to make sure to either choose sodas or juices that have sugar in them or be prepared to add sugars to the drink. The sugar is what crystalizes into ice to give you the slushie-ness you want. It will freeze faster, but should also keep it from freezing too hard to enjoy.
To save your time and effort, you may enjoy having the convenience of a slushie machine, especially if you are preparing slushies for multiple people at one time or you have kids that are a little impatient after playing all day in the sun. The slushie machines that are available today make quick work of old-fashioned freezing.
In our opinion, you may not always need a slushie machine, but they are nice to keep around the house or your business for a cool and tasty beverage option. There are numerous recipes available, suitable for all age groups. Kids will love the fun fruity flavors that are available in syrup form and adults will love turning those fruit flavors into adult cocktails.
Do you think you will enjoy sipping on something cold this summer? Most of us do, and the easiest solution is to have a machine in your corner helping you to create it. What do you think?
There are a few common issues with slushy makers sadly. They mostly include a leaking tap or dispensing valve, which can mean that you have a bad seal. However, this is not the only issue you could be dealing with. For instance:
- Leaking Overflows: Most likely, this is going to be caused by condensation. It could sometimes be a bad seal, but more often than not, it is simply something that means you may need to run it a little less.
- Not Freezing: If you do not have a sugary flavor inside then it will not freeze. Your machine will require syrup or sugary juices and sodas in order to get the slush consistency. If this is not a problem and it still will not freeze, you may not be getting enough airflow to your unit. Try pulling it away from the wall, especially if it is a commercial unit.
- Noise: Unfortunately, noise is going to be a part of every slushie machine. Commercial units may click or run, home units will grind as the inner container spins around ice and salt.
- Outside Freezing Up: In a commercial unit, you could have too much syrup and not enough water. It may also need to defrost if there isn’t a built-in defrosting unit. This should never be a problem on home units or single serving slushy makers. However, if it is, you may want to take another look at your slushie mixture as well.
What Do Customers Say?
We have seen some high praise for most of these machines. Just look at some of the best reviews for our favorite picks.
BUNN Ultra-2 Gourmet Ice Frozen Drink Machine: Kevin says, “We Bought for our Tailgate…It is a head turner and a conversation starter.”
Nostalgia HSB590: Tina says, “This thing is amazing.” Used for Butter Beers at a themed party.
Nostalgia RSM650: D&B says: “It does a great job. I use it every day. Well worth the price.”
Zoku Slush and Shake Maker: Karlene says, “AWESOME product! I especially love it for a nice relaxing adult beverage.”
You can also check out our list of the ice frozen drink machines review.