An ice-cold drink makes sense on a hot summer day, especially when you have perfectly chilled ice cubes.
And you do not have to run to the grocery store every time you need some ice cubes. With the best portable ice maker for camping and RV, you can prepare ice cubes from the comfort of your camping tent, RV or home.
Whether it is a counter-top ice maker or a tabletop ice maker, your ice maker should not be be portable, but also have the capacity to produce enough ice cubes for your drinks.
Portable ice makers are a perfect fit for home bars, RVs, boat trips, camping trips, birthday parties and activities when you need to entertain your family and friends.
We reviewed the top rated portable ice makers that you can get under budget. We considered the performance, portability, price, popularity and capacity of the ice makers to come up with the 10 best portable ice makers for the money.
Best Portable Ice Maker for Camping and RV
The NewAir AI-100R is a very portable ice machine that can be moved at any time and is ideal for use either in small kitchens, RVs, and boats. It has a red finish that gives it a sleek appearance and goes perfectly well with any décor. If red is not for you, you can choose either a black, silver, cyan blue or vermillion orange NewAir AI-100R model.
This portable ice maker machine produces 28 pounds of ice in a day, making sure that you do not run out of ice. The unit offers consistent and dependable ice production, perfected over the years.
Using the NewAir Portable Ice Maker takes only a few minutes, and is one of the best portable ice maker machines for use during a family gathering, BBQ’s, pool parties and outdoor picnics. Instead of buying a bag of ice from your local store that melts rather quickly, this model will save several bucks for you.
Key Features of NewAir AI-100R Portable Ice Maker
- Easy-to-use LED control panel where you can choose from three ice size settings.
- No installation required-simply plug in, add water and give it 15 minutes and enjoy the fresh ice.
- Convenient and compact design.
- Supported with side mounted drain for easy cleaning.
- Has a water indicator that notifies you when to add water.
- Automatic shut-off when the basket fills.
- NewAir AI-1003 weighs 24.3 pounds only.
- The product dimensions are 14.5 x 11.8 x 15 inches.
- Well insulated to keep ice frozen for long.
- Energy efficient.
- Makes ice soft and crunchy (perfect if you love chewing ice).
- Compact design.
- No installation required.
- Plastic water cup may require replacement after a few uses.
The design of Magic Chef Portable Countertop Ice Maker aims at providing a steady supply of ice for those who love ice. This ice maker machine can make up to 27 lbs. of ice per day, which is enough to entertain a couple of friends. With this machine, you don’t have to hold on to the old ways of making ice that takes forever.
The Magic Chef Portable Ice Maker comes in an elegant and compact design that can comfortably fit in any place, whether it is at the office, garage, and poolside or at the park. The machine allows you to make ice cubes instantly in two sizes.
As the name suggests, this countertop portable ice maker is magical in all ways. Just add water to the required water level, press the power button and allow the machine to do its work. Depending on the choice of ice cube size, this unit takes approximately 7 minutes to produce 9 ice cubes.
Features of Magic Chef Portable Ice Maker
- Has a digital control panel to warn you when it is time to empty the bin.
- The Ice Maker has a side drain for easy cleaning.
- Water/Ice level indicator.
- It makes 27 lbs. of ice in 24 hours.
- 9 pieces of ice per cycle.
- The choice of 2 ice cube sizes.
- It holds 1.5 lbs. of ice at a time.
- Approximately 7 minutes operating cycle depending on the size of ice cubes selected.
- The machine weighs 17.8 pounds.
- Product dimensions are 14.1 x 9.5 x 12.9.
- Digital control panel.
- Compact and small enough to fit on the kitchen countertop.
- Very fast- produces 9 pieces of ice per 7 minutes cycle.
- Not very silent
Do you require a portable ice maker for a picnic, backyard party or a family outing? The Igloo ICE103 Countertop ice maker is an amazing choice that produces 26 lbs. of ice per day. This unit produces the first batch of ice in six minutes, making it one of the quickest and best portable ice makers.
The stainless steel ice maker machine has an over-sized ice basket that holds 2.2 lbs. of ice that is enough to use while serving your friends. The unit features three ice cube sizes i.e. small, medium and large.
Igloo ice maker is lightweight, making it possible to carry it anywhere you can plug it into a power outlet. The unit runs on 120w of power and can be cooled using an air compressor. This ice machine is quite simple to operate, and you can use it right away. Its compact design allows you to store it in a small space when not needed.
Features of the Igloo ICE103 Portable Ice Maker
- The machine produces 26 lbs. of ice in 24 hours.
- Has three ice cube options: small, medium and large.
- Produces a batch of ice in just 6 minutes.
- All controls are made via an electric control panel and LED indicators.
- Stainless steel material.
- Weighs 26.6 pounds.
- Product dimensions are 14 x 12 x 15 inches.
- Over-sized ice bucket holds 2.2 lbs. of ice.
- Automatic shut-off.
- Produces ice in as little as 6 minutes.
- Three ice cube options.
- Easy to use control panel.
- Produces 26 lbs. per day.
- Spacious ice basket that holds 2.2 lbs. of ice at a time.
4. Avalon Bay AB-ICE26S Portable Ice Maker Review
The Avalon Bay ice maker machine is a great choice if you are having a party and it is more convenient than a freezer ice maker. The unit produces 26 lbs. per day and the first batch of ice is produced in as little as six minutes. It has two ice sizes that you can select while making ice.
Avalon Bay portable ice maker is lightweight and weighs slightly less than other comparable models, making it perfect for indoor or outdoor events. You can carry it during parties, camping trips, overseas vacations as well as boat trips. The unit has a simple, sleek silver design that matches any given setting.
The unit is equipped with easy to use push button controls to manage how the machine works. The lighted indicators remind you when the reservoir is full or when to add water.
Features of Avalon Bay AB-ICE26S Ice Maker Machine
- Has an automatic overflow protection.
- Produces 9 ice cubes every 6-13 minutes depending on the size of ice cubes selected.
- The Large production capacity of 26 lbs. per day.
- Weighs only 20 pounds.
- Product dimensions are 11 x 14.8 x 14.7 inches.
- Has a drain at the bottom for easy cleaning and emptying.
- No installation required; operates using the standard electrical outlet.
- Push buttons are clearly labeled and easy to use.
- The machine has an ice scoop and a removable basket.
- Uses the environmentally friendly R-134A refrigerant.
- Easy to set-up and use; clearly labeled push buttons.
- No installation required.
- Large production capacity for such a small size ice maker machine.
- Quick ice maker - produces the first batch of ice in just 6 minutes.
- A little noisy
Pro tip: Once you purchase the Avalon Bay AB-ICE26S, don’t use it immediately. For the best performance, let it sit upright for 24 hours before using it to allow the coolant to settle.
If you are in need of the best portable ice maker that will give you a steady supply of ice, Hamilton Beach PIM-1-3A ice maker machine is an excellent option.
The portable ice maker machine produces 9 ice cubes in every 7 minutes, enough to keep your drinks cool during a hot summer camping trip or outdoor party. The unit can make up to 26 pounds of ice per day.
The design of this unit is unique. It has touch button for quick and easy operation. The machine has three LED indicators that update you on what’s going on with the machine. These indicators alert you when the basket is full, when to add water and when the machine is making ice for your drinks.
Features of Hamilton Beach Portable Ice Maker Machine
- Has a water reservoir with a capacity of 0.7 gallons.
- Has a total ice storage capacity of 2-pounds.
- Self-cleaning function.
- Touch buttons for easy operation.
- 9 ice cubes produced in 7 minutes.
- 26 pounds of ice produced per day.
- Touch buttons and 3 LED indicators for easy operation.
- Quiet operation.
- Weighs 19 pounds and product dimensions are 14.0 x 9.5 x 12.5 inches.
- Easy to use and operate.
- Quiet operation.
- Self-cleaning function ensures there is no manual cleaning afterward.
- Makes ice very fast; 9 ice cubes/7 minutes.
- Low volume use.
- May not meet the demand for a large family that uses a lot of ice.
The high capacity Ivation Portable Countertop Ice Maker is a compact and incredibly fast machine that produces fresh ice cubes in just a few minutes. This unit allows you to select 2 ice cubes sizes so that everyone gets enough for a cold drink, whether it’s a bottle of whiskey or just a fruit juice.
The Ivation portable ice maker machine produces 26.5 pounds of fresh ice cubes in 24 hours. The machine produces the first batch of solid ice in as little as 6 minutes. Once ready, the ice remains separated and does not agglomerate. Unused ice cubes melt back into the reservoir and turn into ice in the next session.
The unit has easy-push buttons for smooth operation. Also, the machine sounds several alerts to let you know what is happening. When the water reservoir runs low, this Ice Maker will alert you to add water. Once the ice basket is full, the machine will alert you to remove them awaiting the next ice-making session. The Ice Maker will also inform you when it is on standby or when the ice is not moving into the ice bucket correctly.
Once Ivation countertop ice maker machine has completed making ice, it shuts off automatically to allow emptying of the ice cubes into a cooler or freezer. The ice tray is removable for easy transfer.
This unit is one of the best portable ice maker machine in the Ivation list of ice makers.*
Features of Ivation Portable Countertop Ice Maker
- Compact design - ideal option for small kitchens, dorms, and RVs.
- 2 selectable ice cube sizes.
- The first batch of ice in 6 minutes.
- Produces 26.5 pounds of ice per 24-hour cycle.
- See-through window for easy monitoring of ice levels.
- Ice storage capacity of 1.5 pounds.
- Water reservoir capacity of 2.5 quartz.
- The machine weighs 21.2 pounds.
- Product dimensions are 9.5 x 14.1 x 12.9 inches.
- Easy to use and operate.
- Fast ice making of 6 minutes.
- 2 selectable ice sizes.
- Touch-enabled settings.
- The first batch of ice may be transparent but works fine in subsequent sessions.
The EdgeStar portable ice maker is a portable and compact machine that you can use anywhere, either at home or outdoor events. It is an excellent choice if you have a small kitchen or need to use it during your next camping trip, boat trips or RVs.
This unit makes at least 28 pounds of ice per 24-hour cycle, and it produces the first batch of ready-to-serve ice in 10 minutes. The machine features three ice cube size options i.e. small, medium and large. The integrated storage bin is well-insulated to hold 2.5 lbs. of ice at a time.
The innovative water-use feature makes it possible to reuse the melted ice to make more ice, thereby saving on water and time. To make the ice, use either clean tap water or bottled water.
EdgeStar ice maker machine is easy to operate, with the easy-to-use soft touch controls. The controls make it possible to turn the unit on or off, and also choose the preferred ice cube sizes. If you are looking to add an attractive machine to your countertop, EdgeStar is the ideal choice for the best portable ice maker. Choose from three colors: black, titanium and stainless steel.
Features of EdgeStar Portable Ice Maker
- It produces 48 pounds of ice in a day.
- Produces first ice cubes in 10 minutes.
- 3 selectable ice cube sizes.
- Soft touch controls.
- No drain required.
- Well insulated to hold 2.5 lbs. of ice.
- Melted ice is reused to make ice in the next session.
- Weighs 30 pounds.
- Product dimensions are 14.5 x 11.75 x 14.5 inches.
- Three ice cube sizes.
- The machine makes soft crunchable ice.
- The large production capacity of 28 pounds of ice per day.
- The machine saves water and time with the melted ice reuse feature.
- It comes with an ice scoop.
- The machine gets a little noisy sometimes.
The Della Portable Ice Maker is the best portable ice maker if you are planning to make ready-to-serve ice in under 6 minutes. The unit produces 9 ice cubes in just 6 minutes and 28 lbs. of ice per 24-hour cycle. With such efficiency, this machine rules out the possibility of ice running out in the house.
The integrated storage bin is well-insulated to hold 2 lbs. of ice at a time. Della ice maker machine uses modern compressor refrigeration technology to give you bullet-shaped chillers enough for the summer. The machine has three choices of ice cube sizes.
The machine is quite easy to use. The easy-to-use control panel makes it possible to turn the unit on/off and select the preferred ice cube sizes. The light indicators alert you when the water reservoir runs low or when the bucket is full. The LCD display allows for easy monitoring of ice production.
Features of Della Portable Ice Maker Machine
- It produces 9 bullet-shaped ice cubes in 6 minutes.
- Produces 28 lbs. of ice per day.
- Tested and certified machine-ETL, CSA, UL listed standard.
- Light indicators.
- Easy-to-use control panel.
- Soft-touch panel and LCD display for easy monitoring of ice production.
- Has an automatic overflow protection.
- It comes with an Ice Scoop and user manual.
- The unit weighs 26.1 pounds.
- Product dimensions: 14"(L) x 12.25"(W) x 14.50"(H)
- Fast ice making - 9 ice cubes in as little as 6 minutes.
- Three selectable ice cube sizes.
- Automatic shut-off.
- Easy to operate with a simplified control panel.
- A little noisy especially towards the end of each ice-making session when ice cubes are falling.
The NutriChef is an incredible ice maker machine that works as it says. In our view, it is the best countertop ice maker machine that will give you value for your money. The distinct feature of this unit is that you can connect it to a direct water supply for direct water tapping.
The machine produces up to 33 lbs. of ice per day while producing the first batch of ice in just 9 minutes. You can choose from two selectable ice cube sizes depending on your preference. The pallet-shaped ice cubes ensure that all the guests enjoy chilled drinks to their satisfaction.
NutriChef portable ice maker has a hassle-free operation, with no installations required. You just plug it in the outlet, add water to the reservoir and press the power button. The front LCD panel allows you to take control of the machine and select the preferred ice cube sizes. In as little as 9 minutes, the ice cubes will be ready to be dispensed directly to your glass.
Features of NutriChef PICEM75 Countertop Ice Maker &Dispenser
- It produces 33 lbs. of ice per day.
- The first batch of ice produced within 9 minutes.
- Simplified LED digital display indicators.
- 600g ice storage capacity.
- It has an automated dispenser.
- Can connect to a water supply pipeline for direct water tapping.
- Weighs 25.4 pounds.
- Product dimensions are 14.6 x 12.2 x 13.8 inches.
- The unit makes lots of ice really fast.
- A convenient countertop ice maker machine.
- It makes more than enough ice; up to 33 lbs. /day.
- Easy to use and operate.
- Friendly price for such a great machine.
- Slightly louder just before it shuts off.
- Does not keep ice frozen for long, especially in a hot room. You can place it in the freezer instead if you are not using the ice cubes immediately.
10. Ivation Counter Top Ice Maker (Best High Capacity Portable Ice Maker)
The super high capacity, counter top ice maker is a real workhorse when it comes to making perfectly sized ice cubes. The ice maker machine produces 48-pounds of fresh ice per 24-hour cycle. The unit produces 12 ice cubes in the first batch within 8-15 minutes. The machine has three selectable ice cube sizes depending on your preference.
Although the Ivation Countertop ice maker is a high capacity machine, it is also compact and portable. You can carry the portable ice maker anywhere you need ice. It is a perfect option for RVs, small kitchens, and camping trips. The unit produces enough ice cubes to satisfy all your guests.
The ice maker machine has a recycling system that ensures there is no wastage of ice cubes. Unused ice cubes that melt are deposited in the water reservoir and used during the next ice-making session.
Smart alerts keep you updated on what is going on. When the water level in the reservoir runs low, the machine alerts you to add more water. When the ice bucket is full, the unit alerts you to remove the ready ice to allow it make more ice. This Ivation model shuts off automatically when the bucket is full.
Features of Ivation Counter top Ice Maker Machine
- Easy to use with the easy-push touch buttons.
- Compact and portable; perfect for RVs, small kitchens, and home bar.
- It produces 48 pounds of ice in 24 hours.
- Produces 12 ice cubes I 8-15 minutes depending on the size of ice cubes.
- 3 different ice cube sizes.
- 4.7 quarts water storage capacity.
- 2.6 pounds ice storage capacity.
- Measures 17 x 17.1 x 14.9.
- Weigh 37.9 pounds.
- The Super high production capacity of 48 pounds of ice in 24 hours.
- Makes 12 ice cubes in 8-15 minutes.
- It makes soft crunchable ice cubes.
- Easy to use.
- Smart alerts give you a piece of mind.
- Ice does not melt fast.
- Slightly heavier and bigger than other ice maker machines.
Modern Ice Makers: Are they better than the old models?
Modern portable ice maker models have undergone vast improvements regarding performance, speed, portability and design. The current models only take an average of 6-10 minutes to produce the first batch of ice, which is a significant improvement from the traditional ice makers.
The advantage of the current portable ice maker machines is that you can carry them along anywhere you need ice, either at the park, boat trips, birthday party, camping and other fun activities. Also, they produce large quantities of ice cubes, enough for all guests to enjoy an ice-cold drink.
However, it is appropriate to distinguish that ice makers are different from freezers. Although they are insulated, they are not designed to store ice cubes for long periods. If left unused, the ice cubes will melt and trickle back to the reservoir, and the machine starts making the second batch of ice. The process continues until you empty the water reservoir.
Factors to Consider While Buying a Portable Ice Maker
There are various factors that you should take into account when shopping for the best portable ice maker. Here are few factors that we recommend to help you find the right machine.
Size, Dimensions, and Capacity
Although portable ice makers are smaller than freezers, some models take a lot of space than others. Also, the production capacity varies from one model to another. Manufacturers provide the product specifications i.e. weight, dimensions, and production capacity, making it easy to compare several ice makers.
If you are looking to purchase an ice maker for camping and boat trips, consider the weight of the product. A lightweight ice maker machine is easy to carry from one place to another without asking for extra help. However, if product dimensions and weight are not an issue, consider how much ice the unit can hold at a time. Make sure you have an estimate of how much ice you will need and compare that to the capacity of the ice maker.
Ice Maker Production Capacity
The production capacity per day and per batch varies from one model to another. The production capacity per day is measured in pounds, and most portable ice makers have a production capacity of 25-40 pounds.
High capacity ice makers are an ideal option if you need a lot of ice on a regular basis either at your home bar or office. The high capacity units produce an average of 6-12 lbs. of ice cubes in the first batch of 6-12 minutes. Confirm the product specifications before making an order.
Ease of Use
Portable ice makers are the easiest to operate since they do not require any installations. Just plug in, add water and press the power button. Most models have easy-to-use touch buttons that make it easy to turn the unit on or off as well as select the preferred ice cube sizes.
The smart alerts give you a peace of mind by letting you know what is going on in the machine. For example, when the water reservoir runs low, the machine sounds an alert asking for more water. When the ice basket fills, the unit sounds an alert to inform you that the ice cubes are ready to be removed. The signals give users a peace of mind especially when they are unable to figure out how the machine operates.
The water recycle feature, is an improvement from the earlier models resulting from customer complaints on water wastage. The feature works by reusing water resulting from melted ice that remains unused. The ice melts, and water collects in the water reservoir ready for the next session.
The water re-use feature saves you the trouble of refilling the water reservoir every time you need to make ice, by first using the melted ice.
Ice maker machines are relatively affordable compared to freezers. The machines cost $100-$300 per unit depending on the brand, production capacity, and durability. High-end ice makers cost around $200-$400 because they last longer and have higher production capacities per day.
If you will be using the machine on a regular basis, go for the durable models with a long warranty. Also remember to check the product reviews to know what other customers are saying about the machine.
Frequently Asked Questions Portable Ice Makers for Camping and RV
Before narrowing down to a particular ice maker machine, you need to ask yourself these questions to fully understand the kind of equipment you are looking for.
How much ice do I need?
The amount of ice that you need determines the size of the equipment that you need. If you regularly host several friends for parties, you should go for a high capacity ice maker. A large countertop portable ice maker produces 35-48 pounds of ice per day that is enough for your friends.
If you are just two or three members at home who use ice cubes, a small portable ice maker machine will be an excellent choice. A compact ice maker produces up to 26 pounds of ice per day. In case you are not using the extra ice cubes immediately, store them in the freezer.
How much Ice can I store?
Although portable ice makers produce ice, they do not store it for long before it melts. The ice cubes that remain unused should be kept in a freezer for later use. If you have a freezer at home, go for a high capacity ice maker for better performance and convenience.
What Ice cube sizes do I need?
Most portable ice maker machines have two or three selectable ice cube sizes. The touch/push buttons allow you to select the preferred ice cube sizes. There are a few models that have only one selectable size in case you don’t want a variety of ice cube sizes.
Will I be able to maintain the machine?
Proper maintenance of the ice maker will mean optimal performance at all times. A portable ice maker requires cleaning just a few times in a week, in between the ice-making sessions. Clean the water reservoir and the outer side using clean water. You may use lemon juice or vinegar during the cleaning.