Ice Cream in a Bag

July 27, 2018

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July is National Ice Cream month and we have a fun idea/recipe to share with you today - Ice Cream in a Bag. It is a great activity for long hot summer days, family reunions or summer birthday parties!

Another reason to make this recipe, is that you probably have most of the ingredients already. You will need a gallon and a sandwich size zip top storage bag, half and half, sugar, vanilla, ice, rock salt and chocolate syrup (optional).

Put the half and half, sugar, vanilla, and chocolate syrup in the sandwich size baggie. Then get as much air out of the bag as possible and seal the top completely. Squish the ingredients in the bag with your hands until it is all combined.

Then fill the gallon size storage bag with around 4 cups of ice and 1/2 cup rock salt. Put the smaller bag inside the larger bag with all of the salt and ice and seal the top. (You can use regular table salt, I have done that before but it does take longer for the ice cream to form.)

Now you are ready for the fun part (OK, maybe eating the ice cream is the best part). Kids especially love this step because they can go crazy shaking the bag. Tip: if you are having a party or reunion, it can be fun to turn on some music and have a dance party while shaking the bags. The time will pass more quickly and it will be more fun for everyone.

Depending on the temperature, you will need to shake the bag for 10-20 minutes. I have found the vanilla is usually done a little faster than the chocolate. I suspect this is because the chocolate syrup thins down the ice cream mixture a bit.

When your ice cream is solid, you can eat it right out of the bag or you can stick it in the freezer if you want it a bit more frozen.

My kids think the chocolate version tastes just like a Wendy's Frosty and we love Frosty's. Yum!

Ice Cream In A Bag - Chocolate or Vanilla
Serves 1
Make your own ice cream without an ice cream freezer in just 20 minutes!
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Total Time
20 min
Total Time
20 min
  1. 1/2 cup half and half
  2. 1 tbsp sugar
  3. 1 tsp vanilla
  4. 2 tbsp chocolate syrup (optional)
  5. 4 cups ice
  6. 1/2 cup rock salt
  7. 1 sandwich zip top bag
  8. 1 gallon zip top bag
  1. In the sandwich size zip top bag add: half and half, sugar, vanilla and chocolate syrup (optional).
  2. Remove as much air as you can from bag and seal the top completely.
  3. Squish the bag with your hands until all of the ingredients are mixed together.
  4. In the gallon zip top bag add: ice, rock salt and smaller bag with ice cream mixture.
  5. Remove the air from the big bag and seal the top.
  6. Shake and shake and shake! About 15-20 minutes until the ice cream becomes a solid.
  7. Take the small bag out and enjoy your homemade ice cream.
  1. You can use oven mitts or kitchen towels to hold the bag if it becomes too cold for your hands.
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