How to make ice cream: a great Father’s Day treat!

Molly Saunders, Digital Bear

One of the things I remember best about hot summers is making ice cream with my dad. We use the old wooden ice cream maker that he grew up with. It makes the best ice cream I’ve ever tasted! Nothing ever comes close to that subtle, just-sweet-enough taste, especially after you’ve worked so hard to make it.

This is our family's ice cream barrel. When you store it, the dried wood pieces kind of rattle about. When you make the ice cream they expand and the only thing holding them together are the metal rings around the bucket. They expand to fit together perfectly and don't leak when you're making the ice cream!

I’ve adapted a version of the recipe he has used for more than 40 years so that you can make ice cream with your dad, or so that your children make ice cream with their dad for Father’s Day. It could become a really wonderful tradition for your family, too. I also like that making ice cream can double as a science project because it teaches kids about freezing points and how ice and salt react with each other.

Here is what you’ll need to make ice cream in a bag. The recipe has been broken down to one serving, so keep that in mind and multiply for each person who wants to make their own (I promise, you will not want to share your ice cream once you taste it.)

Ingredients to make the ice cream:

¼ cup heavy whipping cream

¼ cup half & half

1 T sugar

½ tsp vanilla (I always add a teeny tiny bit more because I really like it.)

Supplies to make the ice cream:

2 quart sized resealable plastic bags

1 gallon sized resealable freezer bag

4 cups crushed ice, or ice from a big bag that you would get at a grocery store or gas station

4-5 T salt (We always use coarse grain sea salt or ice cream salt, but any salt will work okay.)

Gloves, mittens or towels to keep your hands from freezing!

How to make the ice cream:

Mix the ice cream ingredients in a small bowl until you feel the sugar dissolved.

homemade ice cream ingredients

Pour the mixture into one of your quart-sizes bags and seal it after squeezing the air out of it. Then put it in the second bag and seal it the same way, squeezing as much air out of it as possible. Set it aside for a moment.

Open the gallon-size bag and put half of the ice into it and, with your fingers or a spoon, sprinkle half of the salt onto the ice. Gently lay the bag on its side to make the ice spread out enough to slide the quart-sized bags on top of it.

Easy ice cream homemade in a bag

Put the rest of the ice on top of the quart sized bags and sprinkle the rest of the salt on it. (The idea here is to surround the bag of cream with the ice so it gets colder more quickly.)

Squeeze as much air out of the gallon sized bag as possible and seal it well.

Using your gloved hands (I like using gloves best because you can see what’s going on in the bags better.) or the towel, shake, rattle and roll the ice cream around until it thickens into ice cream. Depending on how much mixture you put in the bags and how good you are at squeezing the bags it will take about 7-10 minutes.

Last time I made it this way I took out the quart bags a bit early, but it was totally worth it. The ice cream was amazing! (And no, I could not bring myself to share any of it.)

Finished easy homemade ice cream

Thank you, dad, for the wonderful ice cream-making memories!

Molly Saunders and her dad, Thomas Henry Saunders

How will you make this Father’s Day extra special?

If you’re on Pinterest, use the Pin It button on your browser to pin this post and share it with your friends and family! Let’s start a tradition!

Easy homemade ice cream

About Molly Saunders

I am a bear in the Digital Dept at Build-A-Bear Workshop. I work at World Bearquarters in St. Louis, Mo. View all posts by Molly Saunders

3 responses to “How to make ice cream: a great Father’s Day treat!

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