How to Make Ice Cream at Home With Little Ones

Are you looking for an easy, tasty, and fun summertime activity to try with little ones at your early learning center or at home with your own kids? Read on to learn how to make ice cream in a bag with a handful of pantry staples and no ice cream maker. You and your kiddos will love this sweet summertime activity!

How to make Ice Cream

To make your own ice cream in a bag, gather the following ingredients and supplies:

  • 1 cup of whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 6 tablespoons of kosher salt
  • 4 cups of ice
  • 1 gallon-sized freezer bag
  • 1 quart-sized freezer bag
  • spoons and bowls
  • sprinkles and other desired toppings

Here’s what to do:

  1. Measure out the whole milk, vanilla extract, and sugar into a quart-sized freezer bag. Gently press any air out of the bag before sealing it up very tightly.
  2. Pour the ice and kosher salt into a gallon-sized freezer bag. Place the sealed bag of ice cream ingredients into the bag of ice and salt and seal up the larger bag as tightly as possible.
  3. Shake the sealed bag continuously for about ten minutes. Pass the bag around so everyone gets a chance to shake the ice cream ingredients. Use a dish towel or paper towels to protect your hands from getting too cold.
  4. After about ten minutes, the ingredients will thicken into ice cream consistency. Remove the smaller bag from the larger one, dish out the ice cream and add desired toppings.


Here are a few tips to help make this activity successful:

  • Try to avoid opening up the bags to check on the ice cream halfway through the shaking process. If you open the bags too soon, you may be more likely to get salt mixed in with the ice cream ingredients.
  • Make sure both bags are sealed as tightly as possible to avoid spills and leaking.
  • Keep an extra dish towel or paper towels on hand to wipe up condensation that forms as you shake the bags. If you can do this activity over the kitchen sink, that’s ideal!

Did you try this activity with little ones this summer? Let us know how it went. Leave a comment below.

Happy summer from your friends at Honest Buck!

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