How to Make Ice Cream at Home an Easy Way

Almost everybody loves homemade ice cream.
Almost everybody loves homemade ice cream. (Image: Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Ice cream is a favorite summertime treat for people of all ages. Some recipes include exotic ingredients and complicated cooking methods, but you can make delicious ice cream with basic ingredients and simple low-tech equipment. Salt is the key ingredient for successful homemade ice cream. It lowers the freezing point of ice, allowing milk, cream and other ingredients to freeze and thicken faster than they would if exposed to ice alone.

Things You'll Need

  • 1-pound coffee can with cover
  • 1 pint half and half
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Duct tape
  • 3-pound coffee can with cover
  • Cubed ice
  • 1/2 cup rock salt

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Wash the 1-pound can and place the half and half, vanilla and sugar inside. Stir until ingredients are well mixed.

Place the lid on the can. Wrap it thoroughly with duct tape.

Put the small can inside of the larger can. Alternate layers of ice and salt around the smaller can. Pack in as much ice as possible.

Attach the lid to the 3-pound can and tape it on securely.

Shake and toss the cans for approximately 10 minutes. Open the outer lid, remove the smaller can and check the consistency of the ice cream. If it is not done, recover, add more ice and salt, and toss for another 10 minutes or until the ice cream thickens.

Tips & Warnings

  • One easy way to churn this simple ice cream maker is to let children roll the can back and forth to each other until the ice cream thickens.
  • Use the basic recipe as a starting point for your favorite flavors. Add small amounts of chopped fruits, mini chocolate chips, crushed cookies or candies to make many different kinds of ice cream.
  • Be sure to securely tape the lids on the cans.


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