Homemade ice cream is a delicious treat that can be difficult to store properly. Storing your ice cream correctly will protect it from freezer burn and other common problems. There are plenty of containers to pick from. So, how will you know which is the best to hold ice cream? We've done the research and can tell you what container is the best for storing those frozen treats.
Ice cream is best stored in a container that is wide and flat. The best material for an ice cream container is freezer-safe plastic. This container should ideally be airtight with a lid.
Now that you know the best container for ice cream, we'll explain why this is the best kind. We'll also give a few example products as well as answer a few common questions.
Container Size and Shape
A good ice cream container shares a few of the same qualities. The container should be long and flat. When it's shaped this way, ice cream freezes faster because more of it is exposed to the cold air. This also allows for easier scooping! Smaller, circular containers are also an option. Smaller containers will freeze faster than larger ones. However, these containers are harder to scoop from.
Prevent Strange Flavors
An airtight container doesn't only protect against freezer burn. It protects your ice cream from absorbing other flavors from your refrigerator. Another great way to prevent flavors from spreading is to put a box of baking soda in both your freezer and fridge.
It's important your ice cream is stored in a freezer-safe container. Plastic or glass not rated for low temperatures can crack after being exposed to rapid temperature changes.
Can I store ice cream in a glass container?
Glass containers are great for food storage. With a freezer-safe option of its own, wouldn't a glass container work just as well as plastic for ice cream?
While glass works great for other foods, for ice cream it's best to stick with plastic. Glass is a poor conductor of heat. This will cause your ice cream to freeze too slowly, which puts it at risk for freezer burn. While glass isn't a great option, you can use a metal bread loaf pan with a layer of plastic wrap in a pinch.
Check out "Can You Freeze Food In A Glass Container?" for more advice on glass food storage.
Do ice cream makers freeze the ice cream?
While ice cream makers take a lot of hard work out of making ice cream, they still need a little bit of help. The churning process of an ice cream machine only begins to freeze the ice cream. It will not freeze it all the way through. Your ice cream will need to be put in the freezer to finish hardening.
How do you pack homemade ice cream?
After your ice cream is finished churning, it's time to harden it. Hardening ice cream occurs in the freezer for approximately two hours. You can keep your ice cream in the can of the machine or transfer it to a different container.
If you're keeping your ice cream in the can, then pack it down with a long-handled spoon. You want to ensure all the ice cream is scraped down from the sides. Place a cork in the machine's lid and place it back on the can. Then, place the can in the freezer.
If you're transferring your ice cream, then you'll pack it into the new container. Make sure to leave an inch of space at the top to allow for expansion. Cover with plastic wrap or a lid and then freeze.
Ice Cream Storage Tips
Keep your ice cream tasting great by properly storing it within the freezer. Make sure your freezer is at the correct temperature. The ideal temperature for ice cream to be stored at is below 0°F.
It's also important to keep your ice cream stored within the main part of the freezer and not the door. The freezer door deals with many changes in temperatures because it's being opened and closed.
How do you keep ice cream from getting freezer burnt?
Freezer burn happens when moisture gets into the air and then refreezes on top of the ice cream. While freezer burn isn't bad for you, it can have a negative effect on both the taste and texture of food.
Protect your ice cream from freezer burn by keeping it in an airtight container. As you eat your ice cream, think about moving it into smaller containers. A smaller receptacle will have less ambient air and will mean less risk of freezer burn. Covering your ice cream with a layer of plastic wrap will also help protect it.
What is the shelf life of homemade ice cream?
When made at home, ice cream lacks the stabilizers that the storebought kind has. While unopened store-bought ice cream can last up to four months, homemade ice cream is only good for two weeks. Consistent freezing and refreezing of ice cream deteriorate it. Ice crystals begin to form when ice cream is refrozen. This has a negative effect on the overall texture of your ice cream.
Best homemade ice cream container
Even with these conditions, there are a plethora of suitable containers for storing ice cream. The following containers are rated highly and are a good option for your frozen storage.
SUMO Ice Cream Containers
These containers are fantastic because of their slim design. They can fit into crowded freezers and are easily stackable. The SUMO container is insulated with an outer wall that keeps your ice cream colder. All three pieces of the container are dishwasher safe, which makes for easy cleaning. The best thing about this container is its large storage capacity and overall shape.
Large and Mini Set
These ice cream containers come with two 1-quart tubs and two 6-ounce tubs. Each container is BPA-free, freezer, and dishwasher safe. The great thing about this container set is that it comes with smaller containers. The smaller sizes are great for travel or protecting your ice cream from freezer burn.
Glowcoast Ice Cream Containers
These containers are made from an extra heavy paper material which provides better insulation. Their lids are non-vented to help protect against freezer burn. These containers are great if you're looking for a disposable ice cream container.
Rubbermaid containers work just as well for storing homemade ice cream. This type of container is dishwasher, microwave, and freezer safe as well as BPA-free. This particular design of container also has a larger surface area which also makes it a great choice.
Containers that have a higher surface-to-volume ratio will help you freeze and scoop your ice cream more quickly. Choosing containers that are airtight and have a lid will help protect your dessert from freezer burn and from absorbing flavors from your fridge. Don't forget that plastic will be the best container option, although heavy paper material is a good disposable option.
For more dessert tips, you may like "How To Store Warm Cake Overnight?"