Ice cubes and jagged ice are a pain to work with in drinks and cocktails. If the drink is in a drink glass, it creates uneven surfaces for the cubes or solid ice which can damage glasses and other bar glasses. In a cocktail shaker, solid ice can ruin a perfectly good cocktail. The solution to this problem is clear ice cubes. They are easier to use, do not damage equipment and look absolutely beautiful in any glass.
Fill the ice cube trays with distilled water
Making clear ice cubes is a simple process that takes less than 10 minutes. You’ll need distilled water, a tray or mold to freeze the ice in, and some time for the cubes to freeze.
Fill the ice cube trays with distilled water. The distilled water will help prevent cloudiness from impurities in your tap water. You can also use filtered or bottled water, but it’s important to note that some filters can introduce impurities into the water as well.
Freeze the distilled water in your trays until solid. Typically this takes about 6 hours at 0 degrees Fahrenheit. The amount of time varies depending on how cold your freezer is and how much you fill each tray with water. Remove the frozen cubes from their trays and store them in an airtight container until you’re ready to use them.
Put the trays in the freezer
Ice cubes are a critical part of any home bar and the only way to make sure you get the top-notch ice for your drink is to make it yourself.
The process is simple: Fill a tray with water, freeze it overnight, and then pop out the cube-shaped ice from the tray. Here’s how to do it.
Get the right materials
You’ll need an ice cube tray, water, and something to put it in. The tray can be plastic or metal; if you have silicone molds, those work well too. I recommend using filtered or spring water as opposed to tap water because it’s cleaner and tastes better when frozen in this way. You’ll also need something to pour into your tray once it’s filled up so that none of the water spills over onto the countertop while freezing.
Take one of the ice cubes out of its tray and put it in a bowl
- Take one of the ice cubes out of its tray and put it in a bowl.
- Put the bowl in the freezer for about 15 minutes. The ice cube should be completely frozen by now.
- Take the bowl out of the freezer and carefully remove the ice cube from the bowl. Put it back in its tray and return it to the freezer.
- Repeat steps 1-3 until all of your ice cubes are made with distilled water.
Pour hot tap water over the ice cube
- Pour hot tap water over the ice cube and let it sit for 20-30 seconds. The steam will melt the surface of the ice cube, causing it to become cloudy.
- Use tongs to grab your clear ice cube and place it in a glass filled with water.
- Stir in some fruit juice or other beverage with your straw to make a delicious summer drink!
Remove ice cubes from the tray
To make clear ice cubes, you’ll need to start with clear water. If your tap water is cloudy, it’s best to filter it before freezing. Fill a pitcher or large container with water and let it sit for at least 24 hours. You can also use distilled or purified water for this project. Once the water has sat for at least 24 hours, pour it into an ice cube tray and freeze overnight or until solid.
The next day, remove the frozen cubes from their trays and place them in a bowl of warm water for about 10 minutes. Gently push each cube out of its tray using a butter knife or other object that’s safe for cutting into glass, we used a wooden spoon and inspect the inside of each cube carefully.
If you see any bubbles inside your cube, this means there’s still air trapped inside it. To get rid of these bubbles once and for all, poke a hole in one side of the cube using your screwdriver (or whatever else works) and gently blow through that hole until all the bubbles have been pushed out of its walls and onto the surface of your sink.
Repeat this process
If you want to make clear ice cubes, it will take some patience. There are two ways to go about it:
- Using a glass mold
- Freezing ordinary ice cubes in an airtight container
If you decide to use a glass mold, you’ll need to make sure that it’s made of heat-resistant glass and that it has been thoroughly cleaned and dried before use. You will also need to create a seal between the mold and the lid so that the resulting clear ice cube doesn’t leak out during freezing. This can be done with rubber bands or by wrapping them in plastic wrap and then securing them with tape. If you don’t want your molds to look unwieldy when they’re full of water or ice, consider dipping them in hot wax or coating them with paint.
It’s important not to leave your clear ice cubes out in the open air after they’ve been created because they will begin to fog up almost immediately. If they’re left unprotected, they will turn opaque again within minutes of being taken out of their mold(s).
Clear ice cubes are used most commonly in mixed drinks, but if you’re looking for that extra touch of class, clear ice is what you’re after. If you’re lucky enough to live somewhere that has an ice maker in your refrigerator, you can make these ice cubes at home as well by freezing water in a plastic bag. But if you need to do this at home with a standard freezer, follow the steps below.