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Make ice cream in a bag – no freezer needed!

Make ice cream - ice cream in a cone

What’s the Idea?

Make ice cream in a bag using only 5 ingredients without the need for a freezer or an ice cream maker.

What’s the story

My 7 year old brother’s favourite activity during the holidays is to make ice cream in a bag.

I discovered this recipe while surfing through the internet.

Which is something I do regularly because I am always searching for easy recipes to try.

When I came across this activity online, I knew my brother would be intrigued.

Now he makes his own ice cream and he makes it perfectly each time.

When I’m on my way home from school for the holidays, I always buy the five ingredients for this recipe.

I buy them in sufficient amounts so that we don’t run out of any during the Summer.

All you need to have is these five ingredients in the house at all times.

So make sure you have them in sufficient amounts.

Then you will never run out of ice cream again -(how wonderful is that?)

People should do this because…?

It’s an amazingly fun activity for kids in hot weather

They get to see how quick and easy it is to make their own ice cream.

You never run low on ice cream again in your freezer.

It’s a very easy recipe and it is also very cheap.

This recipe only requires five ingredients!

There’s no need for a freezer or fridge for the process.

You get to make your own treat with minimal effort.

Your kids get to participate in the process.

They can assist in shaking the bags.

They also get to add their favourite toppings to make it more delightful.

How do you do it?

To make ice cream in a bag you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup of semi-skimmed/half and half milk
  • 1/2 cup of rock salt – You can make use of table salt if that’s what you have but rock salt works best.
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1/2 a teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • Ice


  1. Pour 1 cup of  the semi skimmed/half & half milk into the small Ziploc bag.
  2. Add ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract and 2 tablespoons of sugar.
  3. Seal the bag properly and ensure you do not have air within the bag.
  4. Now fill the large bag halfway with ice and add ½ cup of rock salt. This serves as your magic ice cream maker.
  5. Place the small bag in the large Ziploc bag, add extra ice on both sides of the small bag and seal the large bag.
  6. Get gloves for your hands and shake the bag for 5 minutes.
  7. If you don’t have gloves, you can make use of a towel to wrap around the bag.
  8. Take out the small bag and rinse the outside of the bag with cold water. Rinse the part above the seal as well.
  9. Now open the small bag gently to avoid having residual salts on the outer part of the bag drop inside your ice cream.
  10. Take a spoon and mix the ice cream to soften it up a bit.
  11. Once you’ve done that, you’re all set to scoop out, add your favourite toppings and enjoy!

Stuff you may need

The ingredients and materials needed to make ice cream in a bag are:

  • A cup of semi-skimmed/half and half milk
  • Half teaspoon of vanilla
  • Two tablespoons of sugar
  • Ice
  • Half cup of rock salt
  • A large-sized and a small-sized Ziploc bag. 
  • Gloves or towel

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