September 7

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TaoTronics Countertop Nugget Ice Maker Review

By Michael

September 7, 2021

nugget ice, nugget ice maker, pellet ice, pellet ice maker, sonic ice, sonic ice maker

If you’re already a fan of nugget ice, we don’t need to tell you how irresistible (and downright addictive) this crunchy delicacy can be. On the other hand, if cubed or crushed are the only options you consider when it comes to frozen H2O, you’re in for a treat!

Nugget ice is small, soft, and chewy. It’s perfect for snacking or for keeping your favorite drinks at the perfect temperature. Since the airy pellets are composed of compacted ice flakes rather than solid water, not just any machine can crank out the perfect nugget ice. The TaoTronics Nugget Ice Maker is a specialized piece of equipment that serves one very important purpose—providing you with the high quality nugget ice you crave. 

TaoTronics Countertop Nugget Ice Maker

3.8 / 5

Likes

  • Affordable price point
  • Self-cleaning cycle makes this machine hassle-free
  • Speed—produces nugget ice in just 18 minutes
  • Optional water supply connection provides versatility
  • Small, compact design
  • Extendable Warranty

Dislikes

  • Capacity may not be enough to satisfy serious ice addicts
  • Fewer user reviews than other models/brands
  • Possible noise issues

This is the best purchase I have made in years. After daily trips to Sonic for years to feed my "good ice" addiction, I finally bought this. I love it so much that I considered taking it on vacation with me a couple of weeks ago. It's quiet and makes perfect ice quickly.

Amazon Customer

Our 2 Cents

two-pennies

This model is a great option for people who want access to nugget ice at home, but who aren’t ready to pull the trigger on a bigger, more expensive machine. Since this model doesn’t take up much space in your kitchen—or cost an arm and a leg— we think it’s a great ‘entry level’ nugget ice maker. It’s important to keep in mind that this brand doesn’t have the same reputation (or as many trusted reviews) as bigger companies. However, people who sprung for the TaoTronic Nugget Ice Maker were generally extremely happy with their purchase.

What We Liked


1) True Nugget Ice

TaoTronics prides itself on its airy, pillowy nugget ice—and reviewers agree! This machine doesn’t seem to have issues when it comes to quality, and users were unanimously pleased with the quality of the ice. Users likened the texture to ice from restaurants like Sonic, and one reviewer raved that, “It has paid for itself in our family!”

2) Affordability 

The reality is, nugget ice makers aren't cheap. With some models costing thousands of dollars, the TaoTronics model is as good as it gets when it comes to price. Of course, more expensive machines offer certain benefits (such as the ability to produce and store more ice), but not everyone wants or needs all the bells and whistles.

3) Compact Design 

Nugget ice makers are complex pieces of machinery, and many models tend to be bulky as a result. This is where TaoTronics truly shines—this ice maker fits right on your countertop. Not only does this handy machine take up about the same amount of real estate as a microwave, but its chic and streamlined design allow it blend flawlessly with any aesthetic. 

4) Versatile Installation Options 

One of the premier features of this machine is the option to connect it to a water supply for automatic refills. You’ll never have to keep an eye on the reservoir, and perfect ice will always be there when you want it. The best part is, the machine can also be refilled by hand when connecting to a water source isn’t possible or practical. The machine’s versatility means you can move it around, or make it a permanent fixture in your kitchen. 

5) Self-Cleaning Feature 

Whenever you’re dealing with water, there’s always the potential for mold, mineral build-up, and other sanitary issues. This model mitigates the hassle involved in keeping your ice machine squeaky clean by providing a useful self-cleaning feature. With just a push of a button, the machine will activate a five minute cleaning cycle that will save you time and energy. Less time cleaning means more time enjoying your delicious nugget ice!

What We Didn't Like


1) Limited Capacity 

The downside of such a small, compact machine is that it can only produce and store so much nugget ice. This model can only hold 3.3 lbs of ice, and maxes out at producing 26 lbs per day. This may sound like a lot of ice, but nugget ice addicts know that it’s easy to go through this amount quickly! Although its capacity may be a con for some people, everyone is different—it may be more than enough for casual nugget ice consumers.

2) Not Enough Reviews

Reviews are an incredible way to get an unbiased, well-rounded look at a product before you pull out your credit card. Unfortunately, TaoTronics only has a few reviews on both its official website and its Amazon page. This makes it tricky to identify potential issues such as durability and lifespan. The good news is, the reviews that this machine does have are overwhelmingly positive.

3) Potential Noise Issues 

Ice makers are machines, and machines make noise. It’s difficult to gauge just how much noise this machine makes, which is important information to know about something that’s going to live in your kitchen. One reviewer noted that, “the rattle was quite obnoxious,” and even resorted to putting tape on the machine in an attempt to silence the noise. Whether or not a machine is too noisy is a very subjective metric, but the lack of reviews make it difficult to gauge what consumers thought overall.

Suggestions Before You Buy


  • Ask yourself how much ice you really need—if the answer is ‘a lot,' you may want to consider a larger model.
  • Do your research—some companies sell identical wholesale models (without the TaoTronics logo) on Amazon.
  • Be aware that limited reviews may mean unexpected surprises down the line.

Overall Product Rating

Even though this machine holds a small amount of ice compared to some of its competitors, and has a lack of reviews, we find it overall to be a worthwhile investment, due to the nature of the true nugget ice. The self-cleaning feature is also big bonus, and the price tag can't be beat. 

Quality

Nugget Ice

Customer Service

Cost

Speed

Storage Capacity

Concluding


Although its limited reviews make purchasing a TaoTronics Nugget Ice Maker somewhat of a gamble, we think the machine’s affordable price and attractive features make rolling the dice worth it. It may not make or store as much ice as some other machines, but the nuggets it does produce are crunchy, soft, and the perfect consistency. Not everyone needs a commercial-grade ice maker, and this model represents a great combination of affordability and accessibility.

Cheers,

Michael

Founder of Robust Kitchen

About the author

Michael spends his days eating, drinking and studying the fascinating world of food. He received his Bachelors Degree in Food Science and Technology at the University of California, Davis and spent much of his time at the school brewery. While school proved to be an invaluable experience, his true passion lies in exposing the hidden crannies of food for the cooking laymen.

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