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Ice cream calculator is a free Windows software for ice cream mix balancing and recipes. It calculates useful data for ice cream making and recipe development. The database currently have approx 100 ingredients. This is purely a hobby project! If you use it I’d love to hear what you think and also any suggestions for improvements, new features, bugs etc. For more science background I refer you to the references in the documentation.

40 thoughts on “Start”

  1. You’ve done a great job with this calculator. I have a feature request and that’s having the ability to have a column for a 1000 gram recipe derived from the W%.

    I own quite a few ice cream books and find the ones that list their recipes in 1000 g quantities work well with the size of my ice cream makers.

    Again, great job. Much appreciated.


  2. I’m running David Lebovitz’s Peanut Butter recipe through your calc and notice that the PAC for 180 g of peanut butter is -128.07. Is that right, can you have a negative PAC?

    1. The software handles the hardening effects of fats from nuts and chocolate by modifying the PAC.
      This is not strictly correct but it gives a way to handle the hardening of these fats.
      I use the same method as the book “il gelato senza segreti” by Angelo Corvitto

      1. Hello,
        first of all thank you for great program.
        I am also using a book from Angelo Corvito but “The secrets of ice cream”.

        With last update you change a calculation of PAC. (vegtable fat)
        But now, when I make calculation for hardening, with hazelnut paste there is no difference with or without a paste.
        Former version, I think work much better even it was not fully correct.

        1. Hello,
          I understand your concern.
          The idea is to develop a specific hardening value instead that takes these fats into account.
          And as a step towards this and to clean up the system I decided to remove the negative PAC values.
          The thing is that the freezing curve is mainly based on PACse so using modified PAC values will not actually show you the correct freezing points.
          It makes more scientific sense not to manipulate the PAC value.
          You can however, at the moment until this hardening value is developed, continue to use negative or modified PAC values.
          Just make copies of the ingredients and modify the PAC values.
          The PAC for Hazelnut paste was -91.
          Here is a list of the old value
          Name PAC POD
          Nutella 7 55
          Pine nut paste -87 0
          Hazelnut paste -91 0
          Almond paste -91 0
          Walnut paste -84 0
          Pistachio paste -70 0
          Nougat paste 0 40
          Peanut paste -70 0
          Cacao powder 21 -42 -50
          Cacao powder 11 -20 0
          Chocolate 70% -50 30
          Chocolate 65% -46 35
          Chocolate 60% -34 40
          Chocolate 55% -23 45
          Milk chocolate 40 4 35

          1. Hi Patrick,
            I cannot use your software as I have a Mac, but from what I get it’s really well thought out.
            I have a comment about vegetable fats, Corvitto’s negative PAC approach (some people recoil in horror at the thought) and the consequent ‘corrections’ which may be implemented in various ways.
            I know that what people care is a balancing sheet and that the end results may not differ, but I find it difficult to justify, from a scientific point of view, that vegetable fats are the cause of hardening. If you think that most vegetable fats are mono- or polyunsaturated, you’ll realise that this does not make any sense, as those oils have low or very low melting points.
            I know that a fat with low melting point will have a deleterious impact on partial coalescence, and the ice cream structure will generally be worse at stabilising air, but the problem with nut butters is in my opinion not the fats, but their starches and fibres (take cocoa for example, one of the worst case scenarios as it comes with saturated fats AND insoluble fibers). And those solids are way more difficult to account for, as each will have its own behaviour.

            This is the beauty of perfecting vegan ice cream, one of the reasons why I love studying and working on it.

          2. Hi,
            Yes negative PAC is not the best way in my opinion.
            I used negative PAC before because this is a work in progress and you have to start somewhere.
            Corvitto works heavily on PAC and suggests different ranges of PAC for different temperatures
            This is based on his long experience and experimentation.
            What he doesn’t do in his book is calculate freezing curves and when you start doing this you realize that negative PAC to adjust for hardness is not the most elegant solution.
            What we need is a freezing point calculation and a hardness calculation.
            Calculating hardness in ice cream is difficult and there are not a lot of research on this.
            So, what you say about nut ingredients is interesting and in that regard it makes more sense to use a general hardening factor instead of manipulating PAC.
            So, using a general hardening factor as I do today makes more sense and the HF does not have to be related to the fats at all.
            But since the numbers Corvitto has experimentally calculated are the only ones available I use those numbers until I can find a better way.

  3. In fact, Corvitto initially recommends has a 1,8x HF for ‘pure cocoa’ and a 0,9x HF for cocoa fats which may have some sort of value. Then he moves towards a general 1,4x factor which is where science starts to recoil. It’s a shame I cannot look at your software, I am sure it is really good!

    1. Hey, usually you can run Windows OS on a Mac and then you can use the software.
      With Boot Camp, you can install and use Windows. Boot Camp Assistant helps you set up a Windows partition on your Mac computer’s hard disk and then start the installation of your Windows software.

  4. HI, congratulations. I am writing to you from Italy. I find the software well done and above all a free resource difficult to find. I wanted to ask have you ever thought about calculating lactose? And if you plan to dedicate the balancing of the sorbets too?

    1. Hi Emanuele,
      Lactose is calculated from MSNF, you can add it to the chart by pressing the Chart button and add it.
      You can not specify the lactose amount in the ingredients but it is calculated from the MSNF.
      I’d love to be able to balance sorbets as well.
      Please send me an email to and you can explain more what is needed.

  5. In the database, dextrose is set to 92% sugar, with a PAC of 174.8 and a POD of 64.4
    Goff and Hartel have a sugar-supplied percentage of 40%, a PAC of 190, and a POD of 74. Who am I to believe?

    1. I’m not sure where you get 40% from I just checked my copy and on page 42 in table 3.2 he clearly writes 92%.
      EDIT: Ahhh… you are looking at table 3.4? there he has a column with 40% for dextrose, but this is “Percent of sugar on a sweetness basis generally acceptable from a quality viewpoint”.
      So it is approx how much you can add to a recipe it has nothing to do with solids,water content.
      Anyway dextrose is a sugar so pure dextrose is 100% sugar. But when you buy it there is usually some water that is why we use the 92%.
      Pure dextrose has a PAC/POD of 190/70 and 190*0.92 = 174.8 and 70*0.92=64.4.

      Pure Dextrose(d-glucose monohydrate powder) has a molecular weight of 180 and sucrose has a molecular weight of 342. So, 342/180=1.9 that is why the PAC is 190.

      POD or relative sweetness is more complicated. There is no science method to measure relative sweetness it is subjective. Relative sweetness for dextrose I have seen reported between 65-80 percent of sucrose. So I have assumed 70 for pure dextrose which is the most common number I have seen.

      The PAC I am quite sure is correct the POD might be something else, I will check around and compare and maybe it will get changed.
      It’s hard to find accurate, consistent and reliable data for PAC/POD for all ingredients so thanks for pointing things out.

  6. Thanks for the clarification. I was looking at a sugar table Ruben at IceCreamScience had put on one of his blogs. Appreciate the detailed explanation.

    1. Yes, he also clearly states that the values are for pure dextrose.
      I have actually emailed the company that makes the dextrose I use and we’ll see what they say.
      Most commercial dextrose is actually dextrose monohydrate and has crystallized water so the sugar content is usually around 91-92%.
      But I am checking this and if I get better information I will update the database.

  7. Since it’s a .NET app, is it possible to publish it as a web app running the .NET things on the server side? I have no windows nor macs.

  8. Patrick, is there a way to add the cost into the database. I see the column there but I cannot seem to figure out how to add the cost of products.

    Thank you so much

    1. If you edit an ingredient you can set the cost.
      You can not set the cost for the standard database ingredients you have to make your own copies of them first.
      Note! I did find a bug that when the ingredient type is “Dairy” this field was grayed down, I will fix this in the next update.
      (You can set the type to general and then back again: See this movie:

  9. Hi,
    I am new to ice making, but wouldn’t it be beneficial to have the PAC and especially POD per volume? Because currently the Balancing function is quite useless, because there is no reference volume.

    1. The whole system uses weights not volume. So the PAC and POD and everything else is referenced by weight.
      Volume is not an accurate measurement.
      There are good references in the documentation if you like to learn more about the science.
      You can also check my science articles and tutorials.

  10. I recently discovered this website and just wanted to say massive thanks. I finally deleted all my improvised excel sheets with calculations because this program has all the functions I always needed for homemade ice cream. I’m so delighted with it, thanks and good luck in the future.

  11. Your software is great. So many thanks. I am following a course on artisinal ice cream making and this really helps. We’re working on sorbets now and I love how I can adjust the tables to sorbet and the colums change. We are working with the Brix scale which I can calculate based on the sugar and other solids, but it would be helpful if I could read the Brix level somewhere. Maybe I missed a column since I am still learning.

    1. Nice that you like the software!
      Brix is just sugar weight %. So the Total Sugar % is the same as Brix.
      Or it is close enough anyway since the definition of Brix is actually the weight percentage of sucrose.

  12. Thank you for the software, it saves me a lot of times by calculating the mix manually!
    Is there a way to measure the percentage of glucose(not sucrose) in a solution? Would a refractometer do the work?

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