Consider this example commercial product, powered refrigerated cold plate

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It has A a compressor unit like in any fridge, B the piping and C a cold plate.

These commercial units are three or four thousand dollars.

I want to buy something like this for home use, not commercial quality/price.

Is there a product segment like this?

It's easy to buy "a small fridge" (product segment name is "bar fridge") for one or two hundred bucks for home use, so there should be no technical problem.

I have not been able to find any with any searches - does such a product segment exist?

One idea was, I hear that to make certain types of ice cream at home, you use a cold plate (basically just as I have described) but it would seem that these are all just "slab of metal you chill in the fridge"?

Is there perhaps some other category ("sushi construction plate!?" "home ice sculpture holder!?") that I'm not thinking of?

It seems hard to believe such a thing is not available since it would only cost one or two hundred bucks.

With most commercial cooking-related categories (which cost 1000s), there's a home segment that costs 100s rather than 1000s, does anyone know if this exists?

(Note that I want an actual powered one that will run "forever", not a system where you chill the plate or use ice.)

  • Can you be more specific about what you want to use it for? That might help generate responses. – moscafj Dec 2 '20 at 16:42
  • How about an aluminum plate sitting on a block of dry ice? – Lee Daniel Crocker Dec 2 '20 at 17:38

Things like small refrigerators can be brought down in cost because of mass production. So you're spreading the R&D and tooling costs across thousands of devices. There just isn't a market for making thousands of these devices like there is for mixers or other kitchen appliances.

And smaller, inexpensive refrigerators don't have the same cooling ability of large ones, especially the cheap ones that use Peltier circuits instead of relying on the Carnot cycle.

There are cheaper items on the market than what you mention (the Anti-Griddle can generally be found for $1200-$1500), but some of them may actually be too cold for what you're trying to do -- sushi might fuse to it like a tongue to a frozen item).

And there are some DIY hacks using sheet pans and dry ice : https://www.instructables.com/DIY-Anti-Griddle/

You might also try watching sites like KickStarter for someone trying to fund such an item at a reasonable price. That's how Anova brought immersion circulators to the masses. (and then once they proved it could be done and there was a market, other companies tried copying them)

  • Ah! the anti-griddle, fantastic answer, never knew about it! Just as you say, that is an extreme-cold surface. What a shame there isn't an "anti-warmer" !! – Fattie Dec 2 '20 at 17:45
  • it's amazing that, as yet, nobody has knocked-off the anti-griddle at a 100 buck price point .. – Fattie Dec 2 '20 at 17:50
  • No, it is believable as you'd need (1) a way to actually make one that costs significantly less than $100 (to account for packaging, shipping, profits, etc.), and (2) a known demand for it – Joe Dec 2 '20 at 17:56
  • Ah, there is at least one knock-off now! amazon.com/Whynter-ICR-300SS-Automatic-Stainless-Spatulas/dp/B084P44TN2 again thanks for this AMAZINGLY helpful answer Joe! – Fattie Dec 2 '20 at 17:57
  • @Fattie : wow. I'm surprised they got the price down that low. It probably helps that it's a company that already made home ice cream machines, so they could use similar parts. (and for those following along in the future ... the item he found currently sells for $230 ) – Joe Dec 2 '20 at 17:59

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