The 4 Best Countertop Ice Makers of 2023


Our pick

This ice maker is one of many clones available, but it stands out for its value, availability, and customer service.

Similar to other standard countertop ice makers, the Magic Chef MCIM22/HNIM27 makes nine bullet-shaped cubes every eight minutes. Within a half hour, you’ll have enough ice to chill a few drinks.

Although the cloudy bullets aren’t exactly gourmet ice, they chill your drinks, and that’s good enough for most people.

The reservoir holds enough water to make ice continuously for a few hours at a time, so you don’t have to watch it too closely for refills. (Like with all of these machines, however, the bullets will melt if left in the unrefrigerated storage basket.)

Though many of the ice makers we tested showed streaks on their stainless-steel finishes, this model showed them more prominently.

The Magic Chef ice maker is generally in stock. And if you purchase it through Home Depot or Walmart, in-store returns should be easy, which is a plus.

Our pick

This bullet-ice maker is compact and has a self-cleaning mode. But because of its slightly smaller size, you need to refill it a bit more frequently.

Like the Magic Chef MCIM22/HNIM27, the Igloo IGLICEBSC26 makes nine bullet-shaped cubes in less than 10 minutes. But it’s smaller and lighter than our pick from Magic Chef, which you might appreciate if you have minimal counter space or plan to store it away.

Similar to other bullet-ice makers, the Igloo ice maker produces ice that’s neat and decent enough for drinks.

This model’s water reservoir stores less water than that of our pick, so you need to refill the machine more frequently, but we barely noticed the difference in testing. The Igloo ice maker’s slightly lighter weight (0.75 pound less than the Magic Chef ice maker) and compact shape make it much easier to carry to the sink to drain and clean than its competitors.

The best thing about this machine is its intuitive controls, which placed it just a notch above the other bullet-style ice machines we tested.

This model also has a self-cleaning mode, which was the easiest to select and operate of the bullet-ice machines we tested. You still need to clean your ice maker regularly the old fashioned way.

Also great

This model produces clear ice—which keeps carbonated drinks fizzy for longer—in much bigger batches than our other picks. But the machine takes up more space.

If you drink a lot of sodas or seltzers, or you just want better-looking ice, consider a waterfall-style, clear-cube ice maker like the Luma Comfort IM200. Clear ice cubes don’t make carbonated drinks fizz as much as cloudy ice does, so your bubbly beverages will taste better for longer.

The Luma Comfort ice maker takes 20 to 24 minutes to make a batch of ice, which is three times longer than our bullet-ice picks. It also makes three times as much per batch. Its ice was consistently clear and lasted for more than an hour in a glass of room-temperature water.

The machine’s controls allow you to choose between two thicknesses of ice, which is useful if you are in a warmer room. Clear ice often comes out in a rectangular block, and the Luma Comfort ice maker’s was easy to break apart.

However, it’s larger than both of our bullet-style picks and takes up more room on a countertop.

Also great

Nugget ice has a cult following because of its soft, chewable consistency. This model makes it beautifully, but it’s expensive and large.

This cheaper, tankless version makes the same great ice, but you need to refill the water reservoir between batches.

The GE Profile Opal 2.0 with Side Tank produced the highest-quality nugget ice of the models we tested. In our testing, the Opal 2.0 churned out batches of crunchy, pebbly ice fit for chilling everything from sodas to cocktails with its satisfying, chewable consistency.

The Opal 2.0 has a sleek design, with a transparent, illuminated reservoir for the ice. A detachable side water tank attaches to the machine with magnets. The side tank allows for more ice to be made between refills; you can also opt for a cheaper version without the side tank.

The Opal 2.0 is able to connect to Wi-Fi and can be programmed to respond to voice commands. (It also has a UV light for sanitizing, though we did not test the machine’s purported antimicrobial technology.)

The machine is large; it takes up about as much room as an espresso machine. It’s also expensive, typically costing nearly five times the price of the bullet-ice makers we recommend. But if you have a thing for nugget ice, it’s a terrific choice.


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