Ice Cream Dipping Cabinets, carts, portable sink systems, hardening cabinets, displays

Cardinal Carts - (888) 864-3694

HOURS: M-F 9am-5pm  (EDT/EST)

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Cardinal Carts - (888) 864-3694  HOURS: M-F 9am-4pm  (EDT/EST)


What makes a hardening cabinet different than a regular freezer?

Hardening cabinets are made to remove heat quickly! For ice cream that means stabilizing ice crystals in your freshly made product at the smallest size possible.   They do this in three ways that are significantly different than a regular freezer or dipping cabinet.

First, the compressors are heavy duty and designed to remove large amounts of heat quickly where a dipping cabinet is made to maintain a moderately low temperature for serving your product.  Compare a hardening cabinet compressor/evaporator system to a typical dipping cabinet system and the difference is obvious--hardening cabinets have a large compressor and forced air radiator; dipping cabinets have a small compressor and thin wire evaporator.

The second key difference is that hardening cabinets stir the air inside breaking up the relatively warm air layer around products that haven't reached the ambient air temperature of the cabinet.  Air layer? Take a look at your hood on a warm day and you'll see the "mirage" near the surface.  This layer insulates the hood and keeps it much hotter than the surrounding air.  Stirring the air (as in driving) breaks up the insulating layer allowing the hood to cool to ambient air temperature.  Same thing happens with frozen products in a hardening cabinet.

The final difference is the much lower temperature range.  At -15F, 90% of the water in ice cream is locked into a stable crystalline form essentially preserving it permanently.  Even with minor fluctuations from normal compressor cycling, at -30F to -40F, a hardening cabinet is well below this safe range for keeping product at its best for long periods of time.

T50HSQL / T50HSQHP - Quad outer doors, dual fans w/ auto door switch, 49.1 cu ft, temp range 0F to -30F/-40F
T30HSP - Single outer door, inner half height doors, dual fans w/ auto door switch, 27.3 cu ft, temp range 0F to -30F


One of the key processes involved in making top quality ice cream is hardening.  The water portion of ice cream freshly drawn at a typical temperature of 22F is only about 50% frozen.  Hardening ice cream is what freezes most of the remainder and "sets" the product promoting better freshness and quality.  Benefits of hardening ice cream include a smoother ice cream texture, better consistency, and longer shelf life.  It can also speed the process of preparing cakes and other frozen dessert specialties.

Cardinal Carts offers three different cabinets, all "Kelvinator" cabinets made in the USA! 

Cardinal carts and Equipment