This takes me back to summer camp, where we made this ice cream every year. When there were a few dozen other kids running around shaking bags of milk, it didn’t feel like a chore. Except, we didn’t double-bag, and mine got all gross and full of salt.

Don’t skip the double-bag. Just don’t.

I highly recommend this for the inevitable summer moment when you’re hanging out with friends and you think, “Ice cream would make this perfect, but I’m far too lazy to go buy any.” It’s likely you already have all the supplies in your kitchen.

DIY Vanilla Ice Cream

  • Prep Time:5 minutes
  • Cook Time:10 minutes (shaking)
  • Total Time:15 minutes
  • Servings:1
  • Easy


  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cup ice (crushed or cubed)
  • 6 tablespoon salt (any kind)
Photo by Caitlyn Heter
  • Step 1

    Add milk, sugar, and vanilla to a quart-sized plastic bag. Seal it, leaving as little air as possible in the bag.

    GIF by Caitlyn Heter
  • Step 2

    Put this bag into another quart-sized bag, again getting as much air out as possible.


    GIF by Caitlyn Heter
  • Step 3

    Add ice and salt to a gallon-sized freezer bag. Throw in your double-bagged ingredients to create a bag within a bag within a bag.


    GIF by Caitlyn Heter
  • Step 4

    Wrap it all up in a towel or use gloves to keep your hands warm. Shake for about ten minutes, until you can feel that the ice cream has thickened when you poke the inner bag.

    #SpoonTip: If your ice cream isn’t getting thicker after all that shaking, put it in the freezer for a few minutes then check on it.

    GIF by Caitlyn Heter
  • Step 5

    Carefully remove the inner bags, ideally without letting any salt get into the ice cream. Enjoy the fruits of your labor.

    GIF by Caitlyn Heter