In this little review, we’re going to have us a look-see of a cheap but useful handheld milk frother. If you’ve done the math and come to the conclusion that it would be best to invest in a tool to froth your own milk at home for your next latte, then it’s always a good idea to see if the item you’re eyeing is your best bet, or if you’re better off getting something else.
Our review will be broken down as such: First, we’ll have a go at the features that this product has to offer. Then, we’ll turn those features into benefits, since features aren’t always clear-cut on why they’re good for you. After that, we’ll sum up the pros and cons nice and quick, so you can easily line up the good and the bad and choose for yourself. Last, we’re going to see what other people have to say about the product, before giving our own final assessment on whether it’s worth the ten bucks that you’ll have to shell out for it.
Features and Benefits
- Handheld, battery-powered milk frother
- Froths milk in 15-20 seconds
- Can be used for both cold and hot milk
- Wipe clean with a damp cloth
- Batteries are sold separately, 2-aa 1.5v (Lr6) required
The IKEA Milk Frother is, first of all, hand-held. Unlike a steam wand, which, as we know, is connected to a big, often times bulky espresso machine, you can move this thing around naturally, much like a stick blender. Except that, of course, it foams rather than blends. Battery power means you don’t need to look for a wall socket either. Talk about convenient.
The speed is another important point here, as it can whip up a good foam in less than half a minute, 20 seconds tops. That makes it pretty fast. Not to mention that it saves you a lot of time in the morning.
Being able to foam up both cold and hot milk is always a big bonus in my book. On the fancier side, it means you can make yourself a frappe during those hot summer days when an iced drink would really hit the spot. For more practical people, this means you don’t have to put your milk in the microwave if you’re in a hurry to have that cappuccino in the morning.
Cleaning up is also pretty easy, though wiping it with a damp cloth seems a bit more work than spinning it up in soapy water, rinsing, then leaving it out to dry.
The IKEA frother also runs on AA batteries. Which is good, of course, as we said before for people who want something more portable. Say you wanted a cappuccino while on a cross-country train, the last thing you’ll need for your frother is a socket. There’s a bit of inconvenience here, though, as said batteries are not included. So if you’re getting this device any time soon, it would be best if you made sure to have some AA’s on hand.
So What’s The Point?
If you want to know my honest opinion, the one thing that this frother has over all the other handheld electric frothers we’ve reviewed is the fact that it’s dirt cheap. Performance-wise, it doesn’t seem to really stand out, except that it foams up your milk rather quickly.
This is a real budget tool and we can definitely say that you get what you pay for.
It’s relatively convenient, but not completely so. Some other frothers we have on our list actually come with batteries, for example, albeit they come with a bit more of a premium.
As one might expect from such a price point, we can’t guarantee that this frother will last forever. Well, what appliance ever does, right? But in comparison to others, the cheap-looking construction might not out-endure some of the other handheld frothers on our list. Some who have a bit of extra cash to spare might even consider it disposable.
That isn’t to say that it doesn’t do its job well. It certainly does, as some of the following customer reviews will show, but we can’t really be sure it will be doing that reliably over the long haul. Like I said, for this particular instance, you get what you pay for.
Wisdom of the Masses
The IKEA frother currently has an above average rating on several retail sites. Considering the tradeoff present here, this should not be a surprising result. Nevertheless, this doesn’t stop it from being one of the top sellers on the site.
Customer reviews have quite a few things to say about this device, as one went so far as to say that you didn’t need to be a brain surgeon to be able to use it. The operation is simple, and even though it doesn’t come with instructions, it’s so user-friendly that instructions apparently aren’t necessary.
A few other customers have experimented to see the limits of its performance. While the IKEA frother is powerful enough to whip cream, it’s not advised to use it to beat eggs, or when adding sugar. Syrup is fine to mix in, though. Why you would try to beat eggs with a milk frother is beyond me, though.
Some advice given that agrees with the spirit of our conclusion – that is, it’s cheap, but you get what you pay for – is to get a six-pack, which will ensure that if one doesn’t last too long, then you’ll have five more to replace it when it does go out.The reliability is somewhat hit or miss. Some last a while, others don’t.
All in all, that’s really what we have to say about the IKEA frother: it’s a tradeoff between price and reliability. Performance is not an issue, as when it performs, it performs well. The question is whether you don’t mind getting a replacement after a few months. Though considering how cheap it is, more likely than not, you’ll have gotten your money’s worth of it already.