Ice cream is a staple dessert in many households. It is rich, creamy, soft, and very scoopable! Having the right tool to take care of the job is essential in any kitchen. You can even use an ice cream scoop to scoop cupcakes or cookies. While they all do the same job, scoop size, handle design, and materials are essential things to think about when buying a scoop.

An ice cream scoop you would typically see at the grocery store will be a 4-ounce scoop or about half a cup. A great ice cream scoop should consist of a comfortable handle, strong material for the bowl, and easily release the ice cream onto a cone or other vessel. 

Read more about different-sized scoops, which ones are the best, how to care for your scoop, and more below. With that said, let's dive right into this topic!

A big scoop of real chocolate ice cream and dripping fudge sauce on a pink background, How Many Ounces In An Ice Cream Scoop?

Types Of Scoops And Dishers

Ice Cream Scoops on a wood table. High angle shot of four different scoopers.

Ice cream scoops, dishers, and spades are generally grouped in the same category because they do the same general job, just in different ways. However, they aren't the same. Let's discuss further below:

Thumb Press Disher

The efficient design of this tool enables the user to dispense the product quickly by pushing down on the side press with their thumb. You can use it for scooping soft foods like veggies, rice, dough, batter, ground meat, and ice cream.

Additionally, thumb press dishers come in various sizes for measuring and different colors.

Squeeze Handle Disher

The squeeze-handled disher allows the user to activate the blade, which minimizes hand fatigue and can be used ambidextrously. Generally, you'll use one with soft foods like rice, dough, or batter.

This tool also comes in various sizes and colors for easy differentiation.

Ice Cream Scoop/Dipper

This is the usual ice cream scoop and creates the classic ice cream scoop shape. It's all one piece, making it easy to clean and eliminating moving parts.

Many kinds have handles with defrosting liquid inside that help with smoothing and rolling the ice cream off the scoop. They also come in a variety of handle colors for quick identification.

Ice Cream Spade

An ice cream spade is usually for gelato and softer ice creams. They're designed with above-average leverage over other scoops and dishers to make them the ideal tool for scraping down ice cream bins.

The spades are great for ensuring you get the most out of your ice cream buckets, and if you're an ice cream parlor owner, you can indeed appreciate that!

Variety of ice cream scoops in cones with chocolate, vanilla and strawberry

Which Scoop Is Best For Serving Ice Cream?

Chocolate ice cream scoop ball serving ice-cream macro close-up detail

Many ice cream parlors and connoisseurs say that the Zeroll scoop is the best ice cream scoop on the market. The Zeroll Company has dominated the ice cream scoop marketplace for over 80 years.

They received a patent for the signature design in 1935 and have not undergone substantial changes since its first introduction.

Check out this scoop on Amazon here.

The signature scoop is constructed of a single piece of aluminum alloy which reduces the risk of breakage and improves hygiene. Furthermore, the scoop includes a patented defrosting liquid that transfers heat from the hand to the scoop bowl and aids in the release.

The unique shape of the bowl scrapes ice cream into a classic ball shape without crushing it.

What Makes A Great Ice Cream Scoop?

Strawberry Ice Cream

Comfort is essential when using a scoop, not only if you use it once in a while but especially if you're using it repeatedly, like in a shop.

The weight of the scoop is essential as well. A lightweight, well-designed scoop will feel more comfortable and nimble. Some of the best scoops feature heat-conducting or defrosting fluid sealed inside the handle.

That kind of fluid helps to transfer heat from your hand to the bowl, warming it just enough to release the ice cream quickly. The only downside to those scoops is that you can't put them in the dishwasher.

If you prefer to wash your scoop in the dishwasher, you better be able to handle the sacrifice of easily rolling your ice cream.

Why Are Ice Cream Scoops Numbered?

Ice cream scoops are numbered to ensure you know how much that specific scoop holds for portioning purposes. According to Zeroll, an ice cream scoop-making company, they offer six different scoop sizes ranging from 4 ounces to 1 ounce.

They are also color-coded to make sure the user can quickly discern between sizes.

What Are The Different Scoop Sizes?

The sizes for ice cream scoops tell you how many scoops you can get from a quart of ice cream. For example, the number 10 scoop will yield ten scoops of ice cream from a quart-sized tub. Zeroll ice cream scoops come in 6 different sizes.

They will read as the following:

  • #10 - 4 ounces
  • #12 - 3 ounces
  • #16 - 2.5 ounces
  • #20 - 2 ounces
  • #24 - 1.5 ounces
  • #30 - 1 ounce

The typical ice cream scoop you find in stores will be a #10, equal to about 4 ounces per scoop.

How To Care For Your Ice Cream Scoop

Scoop of pink icecream

You should only use mild detergents to wash your scoop and only handwash it. Avoid using abrasive or acidic cleaners. Those types of cleaners can mar the finish and reduce scooping efficiency. You should also avoid rough cleaning surfaces such as steel wool or harsh scrubbing.

Tips On Using Your Ice Cream Scoop

People often think they have to use force when using an ice cream scoop. The number one tip is to relax and let the scoop do all the work. Hold the scoop comfortably in either hand and avoid crushing it against the side of your ice cream carton or bowl.

Another great tip that most people don't have the patience for is to wait until your ice cream is at the perfect temperature. If your freezer is extra cold, you may need to leave your sweet treat on the counter for 5 or 10 minutes or just until the sides aren't solid anymore.

The ultimate tip for ice cream scoopers is to never wet your scooper, especially with hot water. You should always use a dry, room temperature scooper.

Other Uses

Ice cream scoops don't have to have only one use. You can also use them to scoop out cookies, muffins, or even cake batters. They're great for portioning foods as well.

The thumb press disher is great for cookies as some batters or doughs can be pretty sticky.

In Conclusion

Serving ice cream scoops in a cone.

We hope these tips on ice cream scoops help you choose the right one for you and how to care for them. There are different types of scoops for various tasks in the kitchen and are different sizes to make sure you have the proper proportions.

Also, make sure to know how to pick the right tool for the job and take care of it.  Be sure to check out our other articles about ice cream!

How Long Does Ice Cream Take To Freeze Or Melt?

Freezer Burnt Ice Cream – Can You Still Use It?

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