The Best Under Counter Ice Makers of 2022

Last Updated on August 10, 2022

Everybody loves ice. You use it for a million different things: making mixed drinks, cooling down on a hot day, filling a bag to ice a sore spot or swollen joint, or even just to munch on if you have pica.

For many people, the ice produced by trays or built in ice makers is enough, but for others their ice consumption more than dwarfs what those small machines or methods can create. That’s where under counter ice makers come in, putting all their energy into producing huge amounts of ice so it’s always on demand when you need it and you don’t need to head out and buy a 10 lb bag from the convenience store when you want to entertain.

Many machines are quite good, but others are simply not worth what you’re paying, and it can be hard to tell the difference up front; appliances like to obfuscate their specs to make it harder to pin down what’s wrong with them. That’s where I come in, with this buying guide. We’ll take a quick look at what makes one good, and then some of the best under counter ice machine could find.

Jim Bob
A long-time contributor to GrillBabyGrill. Jim has had a lifelong relationship with the art of grilling, passed on from his father and grandfather to him.
delicious smoked ribs

Our Top Choice

FRIGIDAIRE EFIC189
  • Make 26 lbs. of ice in an hour.
  • Keeps dropping ice every 8 minutes.
  • Insanely easy to use, quick and powerful
  • Can recycles the unused ice cubes once the machine is turned off.

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Product

Price

FRIGIDAIRE EFIC189-Silver Compact Ice Maker

FRIGIDAIRE EFIC189-Silver Compact Ice Maker

BEST CHOICE

  • High quality built machine. It doesn’t take up a lot of countertop space
  • Great for camping and outdoor occasion use
  • Very easy to use and quiet operation.
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Euhomy Commercial Ice Maker Machine

Euhomy Commercial Ice Maker Machine

RUNNER UP

  • Easy set up, user friendly, and makes ice quick
  • It is quick to make ice and replenish
  • Comes with extraordinary customer service
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Igloo ICEB26WH Automatic Portable Electric

Igloo ICEB26WH Automatic Portable Electric

VALUE CHOICE

  • Portable and can be easily hand carried
  • Can make a lot of ice in a short time.
  • Looks good and easy to use./li>
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How To Pick The Perfect Under Counter Ice Maker Machine? 

Ice makers are pretty simple machines overall. There’s not a whole ton to look into besides their raw performance. This can be broken down into a few distinct categories: ice type, capacity, size, and price.

Ice Type

There are four or five distinct types of ice that ice makers will typically produce.

The first is standard curved ice, the kind you can get from most ice ‘cube’ trays or the ice maker in your freezer. This ice isn’t bad, and is pretty solid for making drinks with little splashback. It’s a good, versatile ice, but honestly not one I typically want to see in an ice maker; it’s inferior to most other types for the purposes of entertaining.

Cubes are fairly self-explanatory: they’re cubes. A lot of restaurants serve drinks with actual cubes, which stack well and melt quickly, leaving drinks often watered down. A lot of people like cubes for entertaining or restaurant settings as they can be a sneaky way of watering down drinks to save them without seeming to. Half-cubes are much the same, but half the size, though work better for alcoholic drinks (they melt very quickly and smoothly).

Nugget ice is also commonly known as “Sonic ice” after the fast food drive in chain. The ice is small, soft, easily chewable, cools drinks quickly, and melts surprisingly slowly. Perfect for soft drinks, and great for the more therapeutic uses of ice (cooling a bruise, ice baths, etc.) as the nuggets are smaller and shift around much easier than other types without melting quickly.

Gourmet ice is typically found in cube form as well, though tend to be rougher, and often end up styled almost as rough cut gemstones. This is what you’ll find at a nice bar (or see in the movies or in advertisements where the actor is relaxing and drinking his glass, sitting on a bar stool). It is utterly clear, made from filtered and purified water, with absolutely no taste or odor to it whatsoever. It also melts very slowly, making if perfect for alcoholic drinks with high quality whiskeys or similar alcohols to be drunk straight on the rocks or in a simple mix like an Old Fashioned. Even when it melts, it doesn’t water down the flavor.

Capacity

Capacity is fairly simple. Any ice maker will be able to hold a certain amount of ice in its receptacle at any one time (its capacity) and will be able to produce a certain amount of ice daily (its production).

Usually it can produce about twice as much ice per day as it can hold at any one time, so an ice maker that makes, say 25 lbs of ice per day will typically be able to hold 12 lbs of ice at once.

25 lbs is a good benchmark number, and is about the average of what I expect, so most ice makers end up in the ballpark of this (some being 20 or 23 lbs per day, but that’s a fairly small difference).

Commercial ice makers can produce far more, and we’ll talk about a couple of those in the list below.

Size

Size her is the exterior dimensions of the ice maker. These are typically meant to go under your counter or be installed in a bar or island, so should be fairly short. How short, wide, and long is going to depend on your cabinets, but a good estimate for the average counter in a house is about 28 inches tall, 14 to 15 inches wide, and length can be a real crapshoot.

Make sure you very carefully measure your workable space before purchasing.

Price

You’re looking at anywhere between $500 and $3000 here, and that’s not even counting installation fees. Under counter ice makers are a real investment, and buying the best under counter ice maker around is going to cost you a pretty penny. Be sure it’s worth it and carefully budget out how much you can spend on both the machine itself and the necessary remodeling (if any) before pulling the trigger.

Top 10 Under Counter Ice Maker Reviews of 2022

1. Best Overall – FRIGIDAIRE EFIC189-Silver Compact Ice Maker

FRIGIDAIRE EFIC189

Why you’ll love this:

This beautiful, modern designed countertop ice maker is the perfect complement to your kitchen, outdoor entertaining space, or even dorm room. The Frigidaire compact ice maker can make up to 26 pounds of ice in a day, making it perfect for entertaining or for your office kitchen.

With super quiet operation, you can enjoy fresh ice for all of your favorite beverages, without the noise of your ‘normal’ ice maker. This ice maker is small enough and super portable, so it’s a great option in your RV or travel trailer, instead of relying on your freezer to make ice.

What We Liked

  • Large Capacity: This ice maker can make up to 26 pounds of ice per day. The basket isn’t able to hold 26 pounds, but it has a large enough capacity for filling water bottles, or your happy hour on the road. When the basket gets full, it will let you know, and will automatically stop making ice.
  • Quality Ice: You don’t have to rely on water from your sink for making ice anymore. Use your favorite bottled, filtered or tap water to make ice. Ice cubes are fresh and you don’t have to worry about funky flavors from the water lines in your fridge.
  • Drainage: If you need to clean this ice maker, it comes with a handy drain plug that will empty all remaining water from the unit. If you need to defrost the unit for any reason, just set the unit in the sink overnight and it will thaw by the time you get up in the morning. Do make sure that you unplug your ice maker when you are draining or thawing it out.
  • Solid Construction: Made from durable stainless steel, and a shatter resistant plastic lid. This ice maker looks great and is made to last.
  • Easy to Use: This ice maker is plug and play. Plug it in, add water, and in 7 minutes you’ll have your first, fresh and tasty ice cubes.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Maintenance: Though you can drain this ice maker for cleaning and maintenance, we found that the drain is kind of difficult. The instructions suggest that you turn it upside down to remove the drain, but this isn’t really possible (and the owner’s manual says you should never turn this unit upside down). Our suggestion, put the unit in the sink, and tilt to the side until you can remove the drain plug.
  • Not as Easy to Clean: Frigidaire doesn’t offer any suggestions about how to clean the parts of the ice maker that you cannot see or cannot access. And, these are the places where mold growth and funky smells are most likely to originate.
  • Temperature Control: This unit makes great ice, but it doesn’t keep it cold and frozen. You’ll want to remove ice from the basket and place in the freezer if you want it to stay cold.
  • Water Supply: This could be a negative or positive depending on how you look at it. This ice maker doesn’t have a constant supply of water. You have to fill a reservoir. When the reservoir is empty – no more ice.

Frigidaire is one of the most reliable names in home appliances. For many, many years they have been bringing quality cooking and refrigeration products to the residential kitchen. While they still make great full-size appliances, their compact and portable line is one to watch.

The Frigidaire EFIC189 countertop ice maker brings you all of the things you love about Frigidaire – quality, reliability and attractive looks. This great ice maker is free of harmful coolants, uses a quiet compressor, and makes the perfect amount of ice for use in your water bottles, cocktails, and other favorite beverages.

2. Runner up – Euhomy Commercial Ice Maker Machine

Euhomy Commercial Ice Maker

Why you’ll love this:

If you are looking for an option that is great for your garage or shop the Euhomy commercial ice maker is a great option. This great under-counter ice maker is perfect for office and commercial applications. With a 100 pound capacity, this ice maker makes more than enough ice for your home, office or commercial business.

The Euhomy makes approximately 33 pounds of ice per hour. The cubes are a great diamond shape which is perfect for cups, mugs and water bottles. This ice maker is quiet and compact and can fit under most standard height counters.

What We Liked

  • Large Capacity: This is truly a commercial grade ice maker. Over a full day of operation this ice maker can make up to 100 pound of ice. The storage bin holds 33 pounds of ice and if the bin is full the ice maker will not continue to make ice. If your family or office loves fresh ice for water bottles and beverages, this is a great option.
  • Multi-Use: While you can buy this ice maker on Amazon and it’s perfect for use at home, it is also certified for commercial use. This means that it can be used in your restaurant, office or other business space that serves individuals other than your family.
  • Control Panel: The smart LCD panel is easy to use and super helpful. Not only does it provide you with the temperature inside of the ice maker, but it also allows you to adjust the size of the ice cubes, the time it takes to make ice cubes and how often the unit is cleaned for safety and health benefits.
  • Easy to Use: The LCD panel is very intuitive, so if you follow the quick start instructions that are provided with the unit, you’ll have great tasting ice in no time.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Maintenance: The owner’s manual suggests that this unit should be drained daily. That seems excessive and not a great practice if you are trying to conserve water. If the water being used to make ice is of good quality, you can skip this step. You can also add an in-line filter for better quality water. But… this does add some extra work for proper maintenance.
  • Not as Easy to Clean: The automatic cleaning program didn’t seem to be as useful as it was advertised as. Also, the instructions for auto-cleaning weren’t as easy to follow as they could have been.
  • Water Supply: If you don’t have a water line and drain, this is not the ice maker for you (unless you don’t mind spending the cash to have new plumbing lines installed.)
  • Noise Level: This is a commercial grade product, so expect that it comes with a commercial grade compressor. This means more noise, but faster production.

3. Best Portable – Igloo ICEB26WH Automatic Portable Electric Countertop Ice Maker Machine

Igloo ICEB26WH Automatic

Why you’ll love this:

The Igloo countertop ice maker is the perfect solution for entertaining. Never deal with bags of store bought ice again. This great ice maker can provide all the ice you need for beverages and cocktails when you’re entertaining. Plug in this great ice maker, fill the reservoir with water and 7 minutes later you have enough ice for your favorite beverage.

Over the day, this ice maker can provide you up to 26 pounds of fresh and delicious ice. If you want to make ice for a party or other event, transfer the ice from the storage basket to your fridge, and never have to worry about buying bags of ice, again.

What We Liked

  • Good Capacity: Provided that you keep the water tank full, this ice maker really does have the capacity to make 26 pounds of ice over a 24-hour period. This is more ice than you get in a 20 pound bag of ice from the store!
  • Control Panel: The control panel of this ice maker is super easy to use. The LED indicator tells you when the basket is full and when to add water to the tank. It also allows you to change between small and large ice cubes.
  • Ice Basket: The Igloo removable ice basket allows you to take ice from the ice maker and store in your freezer or transfer to an ice bucket in your home wet-bar. The unit even comes with a handy ice scoop!
  • Easy to Use: The Igloo instruction manual is easy to follow and understand. Also, the LED control panel doesn’t have any added extras, so you know exactly what you’re looking at, and how to operate the ice maker.
  • Easy to Clean: The drain plug on the Igloo ice maker is easy to access and doesn’t ask you to turn the unit over to remove the plug. Draining and cleaning this ice maker is super simple, thanks to this one feature.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Quality Ice: While the price is right…the biggest downfall is that the basket on this unit isn’t refrigerated. This means that if you want your ice to last, you have to remove it from the basket and place it in the fridge. If you aren’t paying attention, this means sloppy, wet, half-melted ice.
  • Maintenance: We expected more from Igloo. But his ice maker is maintenance heavy. The unit frequently doesn’t completely expel the ice from the molds. This causes the ice maker to quit making ice. The answer is to check on the unit frequently, which can be a pain in the neck.
  • Temperature Control: One of the biggest downfalls of the Igloo ice maker is that the ice is wetted before being dumped into the basket. This means that it’s wet, and if you transfer to the freezer, it sticks together. You’ll want to practice your ice breaking skills if you want to make a bunch of ice from this ice maker.

Plug and play is the name of the game with the Igloo ICEB26 ice maker. This great countertop ice maker is able to produce ice in as little as 7 minutes after being plugged in and filled.

The total capacity of this ice maker is 26 pounds per day, and if you’ve got a handy freezer, you’ll never be without ice again. This ice maker is perfect for home wet-bars, RVs, small offices and even dorm rooms.

4. Ultimate Choice for Parties – Opal Countertop Nugget Ice Maker

Opal Countertop Nugget

Why you’ll love this:

While not cheap, this is a great versatile model. It makes nugget ice (often known as ‘Sonic ice’) which is excellent for mixed drinks and slushes, or even just soft drinks. It comes with a very slim profile (just 15.5 x 10.5 x 17.2 inches) that lets it fit under pretty much any counter, or even on counter tops. It looks nice enough (no more unsightly on the counter than your coffee maker or blender), and is easy to use, with a single button functionality and an easy to open slanted door.

While the capacity leaves much to be desired (it only holds 3 lbs of ice at any given time) it can produce 24 lbs of ice per day, freezing water into ice in only 20 minutes.

This is great for entertaining small groups, or just using it for your own family’s purposes. It’s even portable so long as you have electricity; it requires no water hookup, and just makes ice from a refillable reservoir (melted ice is recycled, so no worries about waste).

What We Liked

  • Small: The compact profile fits anywhere, from under or over a counter, or even wall mounted if you make a proper frame for it. It’s portable and easy to move, weighing about 44 lbs but being very easy to get your arms around.
  • Ice: This unit produces a nice nugget ice (or ‘Sonic ice’) that is perfect for all manner of drinks, and not as bad on the teeth for those of you that like to just eat ice).

What We Didn’t Like

  • Price: Price is a bit steep for a unit with this capacity, and may be a bit much for your budget.

5. U-Line UBI95B00A Undercounter Crescent Ice Maker

U-Line UBI95B00A

Why you’ll love this:

This is an excellent efficient ice maker. It’s perfectly sized to fit under pretty much any counter (17 x 13.9 x 25.1 inches) and has an easy to open and close freezer door.

This one is quite nice as it not only makes ice (and efficiently; 23 lbs of ice per day made from only 3 gallons of water) it keeps it frozen for long periods, unlike most ice makers which will only freeze the ice, and then store it in an icebox with no refrigeration capability of its own.

The unit requires a hookup but only takes a ¼” water line connection, easily found at any hardware store.

Overall this is a good, durable, efficient, and easy to use ice maker with excellent performance. The only rub is the price…it’s an exorbitant cost for an ice maker, about twice what most of the models here cost.

What We Liked

  • Efficient: This unit produces 23 lbs of ice from 3 gallons of water and keeps them cold with a fairly low energy expenditure. It uses a simple, small diameter hookup and is easy to install and use.
  • Size: The unit is sizable enough to hold a good amount of ice, while being more compact than some models to ensure it fits comfortably beneath any counter.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Price: This one is ridiculously expensive for an ice maker; about double what you might normally expect.
  • Ice: This unit only makes standard crescent shaped ice, no cubes or nuggets or any other specialty ice. This is a pretty big drawback for such an expensive machine.

6. Whynter MIM-14231SS 14” Undercounter Ice Makers

Whynter MIM-14231SS

Why you’ll love this:

This is pretty much the gold standard for the ice makers in this performance range. It hits the perfect price point for a 23 lbs daily capacity under counter ice maker, being reasonably priced without being a super low range model that needs to cut features.

It only makes standard curved ice, unfortunately, but does so efficiently and with a great capacity, with an easy to open door and the absolute perfect sizing for fitting under a counter, at 16 x 14 x 24.5 inches (length, width, height).

Many of these under counter models approach the 30 inch height range, which is difficult when in my experience most countertops rest at about 28 inches.

The construction is solid and will last a while, and installation is easy so long as you have a good spot picked out for it already.

If you’re looking for a plain no frills under counter ice make this model from Whynter is the perfect candidate for adding to your home.

What We Liked

  • Capacity: A 23 lb daily production output and 12 lb capacity is great for an ice maker in this price range, and perfect for the uses of most people.
  • Price: A great price for the performance, without needing to cut corners.
  • Size: Size is perfect for installing under pretty much any standard counter without needing to remodel.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Curved Ice: Curved ice is sadly all this makes. It’s a good multipurpose ice, but generally I prefer cubes or nuggets from an ice maker, since you can get plain curved ice from most standard freezers’ built in ice makers these days.

7. EdgeStar IB250SS 15 Inch Wide 20 Lb. Built-in Ice Maker

EdgeStar IB250SS

Why you’ll love this:

This is less “under counter” and more “in counter”, designed to be built into a bar or other countertop (it’s great for islands!), but has quite good production. While expensive (about twice the average for a 20 to 25 lb daily machine) it makes up for it with the capacity to hold 20 lbs at a time, of crescent shaped ice. While it’s sad that it doesn’t do cubes or nuggets, the crescent shaped ice does have one major advantage in this large of a container: it’s harder and longer lasting, leaving you with much more usable ice over the long term.

It’s front venting, so you can also use it as a free standing unit and doesn’t require a drain, making it much easier to install than some other models.

Of the 25 lb daily capacity units in this price range, this is definitely one of the better deals for the capacity alone; most can produce that amount of ice, but can’t hold more than a fraction of it at once.

As long as you’re fine with it not being truly under the counter, it’s pretty perfect, and a great addition to a home bar.

What We Liked

  • Capacity: Great capacity and production, with a 25 lb daily limit and a 20 lb total capacity it fills up and stays cold for long durations.
  • Versatile: Works as a freestanding unit or as a built in ice maker. It’s easy to install and doesn’t need a drain, so it works pretty much anywhere.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Built In: While good, it does technically mean this isn’t an under the counter model at all. It’s perfect for bars or islands, but not for more standard counter setups in the average home.

8. Scotsman CU50PA-1A Undercounter Ice Maker

Scotsman CU50PA-1A

Why you’ll love it:

This ice maker is a very high quality, extreme high capacity model that’s hard to rate compared to everything else on the list. Let’s talk about performance first.

Per day, this ice maker produces an immense 100 lbs of ice from 34 gallons of water. This is obviously a very high capacity machine and should really only be purchased by someone who needs that much ice, as it will suck up a lot of energy per day.

The ice itself is top notch gourmet ice. It is tasteless and perfectly clear, made from pure water (which will often mean you need to provide purified water to the tank and to remove any filth accumulated over time ensuring that it’s immaculately clean). Gourmet ice is excellent for mixed drinks like the old fashioned or similar mixes that have the alcohol itself as the centerpiece, being the highest quality ingredient.

I have not referred to this unit as an “under counter” ice maker at all so far, and for good reason. It is simply too large to be an under counter model, standing at 35 inches high. It fits better in a bar or island (mine stand at about 37 inches), but for the average counter you’re looking at somewhere between 26 and 30 inches.

This unit is exorbitantly expensive as well, and due to the nature of its height, will not fit into an existing counter setup, so will massively increase the cost in terms of remodeling and installation. You’re looking at about twice the average cost for units I’ve called “expensive” so far. The price makes sense when you factor in this is a commercial model, but that means it’s really overkill for the average person. Basically, the price, size, and volume is only justifiable if you run a bar, lunge, or restaurant.

What we liked

  • Ice: Ice quality is impeccable gourmet ice, produced in quantities that could be considered overkill for most people.

What we didn’t like

  • Price: Price is exorbitant for homes, being designed for commercial applications, the same with everything else about this unit.
  • Size: This unit is too large to fit under most home counters without remodeling.

9. Manitowoc UYF0310A Neo Undercounter Ice Maker

Manitowoc UYF0310A

Why you’ll love it:

This is another high quality but incredibly niche model. Do you run a hotel, motel, community center, country club or some other location where you need or want to provide high volumes of ice to large numbers of people per day? Then this is a great model for that rare circumstance.

It has a ridiculous daily ice production, making a whopping 290 lbs of ice per day and stores up to 100 lbs of that at any given time. It can go pretty much anywhere you want it, unless where you want it is under a counter. This unit is clearly free standing and I’m at a loss as to how you’d fit this under any counter top that wasn’t specifically made to hold something of this size and shape.

The ice it makes are half dice cubes (commonly found at fast food restaurants; they melt fast but fit in a cup very well).

This one is difficult to evaluate as a purchase because it’s so niche, just like the Scotsman model. No single person can use this much ice in a day, or would be willing to spend so much on it (this is about $1000 more than the Scotsman, for posterity), so I can’t recommend it as a general rule, unless your using it for making snow cones, for bars and for other commercial use. 

What we liked

  • Capacity: A 290 lbs daily production limit and 100 lbs storage capacity at any given time blows anything else on this list out of the water.

What we didn’t like

  • Niche: This model is high expense and too much volume for most people to even think of making use of in a month, much less in a day. It is impossible to recommend this unit for anybody that doesn’t actually need roughly 300 lbs of ice per day for whatever reason.

10. Sunpentown Under counter Ice Maker

Sunpentown

Why you’ll love it:

This undercounter ice maker produces standard crescent shaped ice. It can make and store up to 12 lbs of ice per day. This makes it a nice compact unit that can fit under many standard counters (it stands at 18 x 15 x 25 inches). If you still can’t find a counter to fit it under, it works as both a freestanding unit and an undercounter model so you can nestle it in the corner of a kitchen or something similar out of the way.

This is, honestly, not a particularly good model, especially for the price. It’s small, slow, and surprisingly expensive, but gives a good baseline for what you can expect from a smaller model; typically size is not the biggest driving factor behind price.

What we liked

  • Compact: At 18 x 15 x 25 it fits under most full sized counters, and if it doesn’t can fit in the corner of a kitchen or other room easily. It’s front ventilated so no worries about overheating when pressed against a wall. This is a great model for an apartment or small entertaining room or ‘man cave’.

What we didn’t like

  • Ice: Ice is produced fairly slowly (12 lbs a day) and only comes in a fairly standard crescent shape, not cubes or nugget ice.
  • Price: This model is surprisingly expensive for its price and performance, so if you don’t need a model this compact you’re better of shelling out for a larger one which might cost about the same but produce twice as much ice per day.

FINAL VERDICT

FRIGIDAIRE EFIC189

Choosing the best here was a rough call, and I’ll call it a three way tie between the FRIGIDAIRE model, Euhomy offering, and the Igloo model. All three are great for what they are, with Opal being a small nugget maker, and U-line and Whynter’s models being mid sized crescent makers. The U-line is expensive but has a few great features (refrigeration, primarily) while the Wynter is a bit cheaper but without those extras.

The Scotsman and Manitowoc models are excellent high performance machines, but hard to recommend for anyone who doesn’t own a bar or hotel respectively.

The rest fall behind these other offerings quite a bit in most areas, unless you’re willing to pay a premium for the different kinds of ice they may offer. Hat tip: If your ice maker is not working here’s what you can do.

For outdoor parties you need to keep your wine and beer cold too, so here are the best kegerators in the market today.