Looking for a delicious and easy dessert recipe? Look no further than this homemade Ice Cream in a bag recipe! This simple ice cream recipe only requires a few ingredients and can be made in minutes. Plus, it’s a great activity to do with kids! They’ll love watching the ice cream churn and eat their creation afterward.
Homemade Ice Cream in A Bag Recipe
If you are looking for a fun activity to do with the kids this summer Ice Cream in a Bag is the perfect activity. Not only will the kids have a sweet treat to enjoy but they will have a fun activity and learn about science while making it.
My kids and I make this no churn homemade ice cream often and it is one of their favorite activities. Plus they love that they get to enjoy ice cream at the end. The kids love to make ice cream in a bag no matter what time of year it is.
Homemade ice cream is the best. You get to customize it any way that you like. But ice cream machines are crazy expensive and not as fun as making ice cream in a bag.
The great thing about this fun activity and recipe is that you can make ice cream with no ice cream maker! Use this fun ice cream in a bag recipe to not only make delicious ice cream but also teach kids the science behind making this simple ice cream recipe.
If you want to make things even more tasty, make some Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches with the homemade ice cream.
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What is Ice Cream in a Bag?
Ice cream in a bag is a fun and easy way to make ice cream without using a traditional ice cream maker. It’s a simple process that involves mixing together ingredients like cream, sugar, and flavorings in a sealable bag. Then, you place that bag inside a larger bag filled with ice and salt. By shaking and massaging the bags for a little while, the ice and salt cause the cream mixture to freeze and turn into delicious ice cream. It’s a great activity to do with kids or when you don’t have access to an ice cream machine.
Why This Ice Cream Science Experiment is the Perfect Treat
Making ice cream is a fun way to teach kids science. Kids will learn how salt can create a reaction with ice, much like people using salt in the wintertime on sidewalks and roads. At the end of the science lesson, kids will get to eat the ice cream.
You can add more learning to the process by seeing if it takes longer or shorter to have the ice cream form when you add different mixins.
What kind of Science is Ice Cream in a Bag?
Ice cream in a bag involves a few different branches of science.
First, there’s the science of temperature and heat transfer. By adding salt to the ice, we lower its freezing point, allowing the ice cream mixture to get colder and freeze. This is called freezing point depression and it’s a part of thermodynamics.
Next, there’s the science of phase changes. The ice cream mixture goes from a liquid to a solid state as it freezes and back to a liquid when it melts. Understanding how substances change between different states, from liquid to solid, is an important concept in physics and chemistry.
There’s also the science of mixing and reactions. When we shake the bag, it helps distribute the cold temperature evenly and prevents large ice crystals from forming. This mixing process affects the texture and consistency of the ice cream.
Overall, this tasty science experiment involves concepts from thermodynamics, phase changes, and mixing reactions. Making a fun and tasty way to explore these scientific principles!
Why Does Ice Cream in a Bag Work?
The chemistry behind ice cream is fascinating and contributes to its deliciousness! The magic lies in the combination of salt and ice in the bag.
To make homemade ice cream, you need to lower the temperature of the ingredients and freeze them. Instead of using a regular freezer, you create a solution by mixing salt and ice together.
When salt is added to the ice, it reduces the freezing point of water. As a result, you’ll observe the ice melting while the ice cream ingredients start to freeze. This phenomenon can also be observed in ice-melting experiments.
Shaking the bag is important because it allows the warm cream mixture to move around, ensuring better freezing. It also incorporates some air, giving the ice cream a fluffy texture.
Is ice cream a liquid or a solid? It actually undergoes a change of states, demonstrating more chemistry! Initially, it starts as a liquid, but as it freezes, it transforms into a solid. However, when it melts, it returns to a liquid state. This reversible change showcases the dynamic nature of ice cream.
As you shake the bag, you’ll notice it becoming very cold, making it challenging to handle without gloves. You might want to use a pair of gloves to protect your hands while shaking the bag so your hands don’t get too cold.
Tips for Making Bag Ice Cream
Use a small bag for each individual kid’s ice cream. I like to use quart-size bags that fit the ice cream because it makes it easier to shake and divide when multiple kids are making their own ice cream. Using smaller bags to make the ice cream works well when you have kids who want to add different things like sprinkles or fruit to their ice cream and make different flavors at the same time.
Rinse the bag of ice cream off with cold water when you remove it from the salt. You don’t want to use warm water as that will melt the ice cream.
Rinse the salt off well. If you have salt on the bag because it was not rinsed well then you can end up getting salt into your ice cream.
Use the Bag to Mix everything. You can mix them in a bowl and then pour them into the zip-close bag or you can pour the ingredients right into the plastic zip-close bag. I find it easiest to put the plastic bag in a bowl and then pour the ingredients into the bag.
The bag will get cold. While you are shaking the bag to make the ice cream it will get cold. You can make it a fun game of having kids take turns shaking it. You can also have the kids wear oven mitts or gloves to keep their hands from getting too cold while making it.
Use freezer bags. Freezer bags are thicker than other types of zip close bags. They will hold up better than using the thinner bag like sandwich bags while you shake them in the bag of ice and salt.
Make a firmer texture. If you prefer your ice cream to have a firmer texture that can be scooped easily, you can transfer it from the bag to a container that is safe to put in the freezer. Leave the container in the freezer for approximately 3-4 hours to allow the ice cream to harden and reach the desired consistency.
Shake the bag constantly. Keep shaking the bag and try to move the ice around the ice cream mixture as much as you can. This helps the ice cream freeze properly and ensures that it turns out delicious and creamy.
How to Make Different Flavors of Homemade Ice Cream in a Bag
When you are adding the ice cream ingredients to the bag add in the flavor choices as well. For this recipe, we have included how to make vanilla ice cream in a bag. If you want to change the flavor of your ice cream it is easy to do just leave out the vanilla extract and use the different flavor option instead.
- Mint Ice Cream in a Bag: 1 tablespoon of mint extract
- Mint Chip Ice Cream in a Bag: 1 tablespoon of mint extract and 1 tablespoon of chocolate chips
- Chocolate Ice Cream in a Bag: 1 tablespoon Chocolate Syrup
- Caramel Ice Cream in a Bag: 1 tablespoon Caramel Sauce
- Strawberry Ice Cream in A Bag: add 4 tablespoons of chopped strawberries and 1 tablespoon of strawberry extract.
- Cotton Candy Flavored Ice Cream in a Bag: 1 tablespoon of cotton candy extract.
How to Add Mix-ins to Ice Cream in a Bag Recipe
After shaking the ice cream until it has formed and you have rinsed off the salt from the bags open each bag of ice cream. Add the add-ins to the ice cream and use a spoon to mix them in or you can use your hands to mix them into the ice cream.
What are good Mix-ins for Homemade Ice Cream?
There are numerous add-ins that you can include in homemade ice cream to enhance its flavor and texture. Really, you can add anything to the ice cream. Just make sure that if you are adding chunks they are small enough that they can be picked up in a bite of ice cream. Here are some popular options:
- Chocolate chips. Add chunks or mini chocolate chips for a classic addition to your ice cream.
- Nuts. Chopped nuts like almonds, walnuts, or pecans can provide a delightful crunch and extra flavor.
- Cookie pieces. Crushed cookies such as Oreo cookies, chocolate chip cookies, or graham crackers can add a delicious cookie crunch to your ice cream.
- Fruit. Fresh or frozen fruits like strawberries, blueberries, mangoes, or peaches can bring a refreshing burst of flavor to your ice cream.
- Candy or caramel. Crushed candy bars, caramel swirls, or toffee bits can create delightful bursts of sweetness and texture.
- Brownie chunks. Mix in small pieces of brownies for a rich, fudgy addition to your ice cream.
- Marshmallows. Mini marshmallows or toasted marshmallow swirls can provide a fluffy and gooey element to your ice cream.
- Sprinkles. Colorful sprinkles can add a playful and festive touch to your ice cream creation.
- Peanut butter or Nutella. Swirl in creamy peanut butter or Nutella for a luscious and indulgent flavor.
Supplies Needed to Make Ice Cream in a Bag
- 2 gallon-sized zip-closed bags or 1-gallon bag and 4 quart-sized bags
- 3 cups Ice Cubes
- 1 cup rock salt
Homemade Ice Cream in a Bag Recipe Ingredients
- 1 cup whole milk
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- pinch salt
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon of pure vanilla extract
How to Make Homemade Ice Cream in a Bag Recipe
In a large mixing bowl add the milk, heavy cream, pinch of salt, and vanilla extract. Stir with a spoon to mix well. If you are making a different flavor than vanilla use that flavor extract instead.
Pour the ice cream mixture from the bowl into the zip top bag. Seal the zip top bag and squeeze out as much air as you can.
In another gallon sized bag add the 3 cups of ice and 1 cup of rock salt.
Place the bag with the ice cream mixture into the bag with the ice and salt and zip the bag shut.
Start shaking the bag. As you shake it you will feel and see the ice cream beginning to form. Keep shaking until the ice cream has fully formed.
Once the homemade ice cream is solid remove the bag of ice cream and rinse off with water.
Scoop the ice cream and serve it or store it in the freezer.
Ice Cream Recipes
- 1 cup whole milk
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- pinch salt
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon of pure vanilla extract
- In a large mixing bowl add the milk, heavy cream, pinch of salt, and vanilla extract. Stir with a spoon to mix well. If you are making a different flavor than vanilla use that flavor extract instead.
- Pour the ice cream mixture from the bowl into the zip top bag. Seal the zip top bag and squeeze out as much air as you can.
- In another gallon sized bag add the 3 cups of ice and 1 cup of rock salt.
- Place the bag with the ice cream mixture into the bag with the ice and salt and zip the bag shut.
- Start shaking the bag. As you shake it you will feel and see the ice cream beginning to form. Keep shaking until the ice cream has fully formed.
- Once the homemade ice cream is solid remove the bag of ice cream and rinse off with water.Scoop the ice cream and serve it or store it in the freezer.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 397Total Fat: 30gSaturated Fat: 19gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 94mgSodium: 61mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 0gSugar: 30gProtein: 4g
Do You Have to Use Rock Salt to Make Homemade Ice Cream in a Bag?
You can use other types of salt when making ice cream in a bag. Rock salt is commonly used because it is coarse and dissolves slowly, which helps create a very cold environment for freezing the ice cream mixture. However, if you don’t have rock salt, you can still use other types of salt, such as table salt or kosher salt.
Can I use Half and Half instead of milk?
Yes. You can use half and half and cream instead of whole milk.
How do I prevent Salty Ice Cream?
When you are making ice cream in a bag it is important to use quality zip-close bags. You want to make sure that they will not get a hole in them when you are shaking them. If you get a hole in the bag with the ice cream mixture in it you will get salt and water in the ice cream mixture which will make it salty but also will make it not turn into ice cream.
You also want to be careful when you are removing the bag of ice cream from the salt and ice bag. Be sure to rinse the ice cream bag off well with cold water to remove any salt that may be on the outside of the bag.
Using chunk salt like rock salt instead of table salt will also help prevent salt from getting into the ice cream mixture because it takes longer to dissolve in water when the ice melts than smaller salts.
How Long Does It Take to Shake the Homemade Ice Cream in a Bag Recipe
The time it takes to achieve the desired consistency of the ice cream will vary. It can freeze anywhere between 5 to 15 minutes, depending on different factors. By shaking the bag more vigorously, you can speed up the freezing process and reach the desired consistency faster.
How to Store Homemade Ice Cream in a Bag
After you have made the ice cream, you will want to store it either in a bag or an airtight container. I like to use a container because it will sit in the refrigerator easier. It makes it easier to stack.