Try This at Home: Make Your Own Ice Cream

By OSC on July 12, 2018 in What's New

Beat the heat this summer that you can make at home! It only takes a few simple ingredients to make your own ice cream. There’s a sweet treat at the end of the experiment, but getting there is half the fun because you’ll get to watch as a scientific physical change happens right in your hands!

Physical changes occur when matter changes from one state to another, without any change to its chemical makeup. In this experiment, you’ll start with a liquid, and finish with a solid.



  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 pint-size Ziploc bag
  • Duct tape
  • 1/2 cup rock salt
  • Ice (enough to fill a gallon-size Ziploc bag)
  • 1 gallon-size Ziploc bag
  • Ice cream toppings (optional)



STEP 1: Combine the sugar, whole milk, and vanilla in the pint-size Ziploc bag and seal the bad tightly. Secure the top of the bag with duct tape.

STEP 2: Combine the rock salt and ice in the gallon-size Ziploc bag.

STEP 3: Place your sealed ice cream bag into the gallon-size Ziploc bag.

STEP 4: Seal the ice bag, and start shaking! You’ll need to shake for about 5 minutes, so if you get tired, pass the bag to a friend.

STEP 5: Take your ice cream bag out of the ice bag, and check to see if the ice cream is frozen. If it’s still liquidy, put it back into the ice bag and shake some more! If the ice cream is solid, then it’s ready to eat.

STEP 6: Add toppings of your choice, and enjoy!


Adding salt lowers the freezing temperature of the water, so that the water won’t freeze as easily. For our ice cream, it allows the temperature of the external ice/salt mixture around the ice cream to get colder. There is water in the milk, but the other chemicals and ingredients in the ice cream require a lower freezing point than water. So the salt helps everything freeze together


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