Water shouldn’t be the only thing that you are freezing. Not only are there options when it comes to the actual item being frozen, but there is a multitude of great seasonal silicone trays, from hearts to dinosaurs, that can fulfill any creative spark you may be feeling!
Once frozen, pop out your creations and transfer them to a labeled plastic bag or lidded container to be used at your discretion.
7 Things to Freeze in an Ice Cube Tray
- Berries ~ We all know that berries are a superfood with their rich colors and health benefits and they freeze nicely. You can freeze prepared berries in a little water or even coconut water. Or you can pulse them in a food processor with a little water and honey before freezing. Perfect for smoothies or eating right out of the tray!
- Coconut Water ~ Packed with antioxidants, coconut water is a great addition to our diets. When making smoothies, instead of watering down your drink with regular ice cubes, freeze coconut water to not only add that frozen component, but also all of the great enzymes, vitamins, amino acids, and flavor to your next smoothie.
- Herbs ~ Growing fresh herbs is my favorite part of summer. I love these, but during the rest of the year, I am subjected to their dried counterparts. Sometimes, I will buy herbs, but only need a portion for a specific recipe and I’m sorry to say, they usually end up getting brown in my fridge. But there is another option….freeze them. Remove stems and place in your tray. Add water or olive oil and freeze. Once frozen, transfer to a baggie or lidded container marked with the name of the herb. Just chuck a few cubes in the next time you are making marinara, a stir-fry, chili, or a soup!
- Broth ~ When I make broth, I usually make it in 4- or 6-cup batches because these are the amounts I use in a soup recipe. Recently, I’ve been adding an extra cup of water so that I can have a little extra. Freezing broth has been an added love of mine. I love adding a couple of cubes to the water in my Instant Pot when steaming veggies to add another flavor layer. Or if rice is a staple in your diet, add a few cubes when boiling water. If you need bigger blocks of broth, utilize your muffin tin for larger pre-portioned amounts. Broth is a great flavor addition to sauces, curry, mashed veggies, gravy, stir-fry, and so much more!
- Coffee ~ instead of throwing out that leftover coffee from the morning pot, freeze it! There are so many great ways to use these. The obvious way is to add a few cubes to your iced coffee drink. You can also blend it with some dairy-free ice-cream for a coffee milkshake. The frozen coffee can also be used in your preferred milk so that as the cubes melt, your milk becomes flavored. Another not-so-traditional use is to cowboy-up your next pot of chili by adding a few cubes to the pot. The rustic coffee flavor plays well with the chili spices.
- Pesto ~ When I make pesto (another great use for those end of year herbs), I usually have some leftover and I don’t want to waste it (and sometimes I even purposely make extra while I have my mini food processor out). Freeze it into cubes for so many ways to use these little gems…throw them in the skillet with ground beef, roasted potatoes, pork chops, marinara sauce…and anywhere else your imagination can take you. Also, this is a wonderful addition to soups and stews.
- Citrus Fruit Juice + Zest ~ Whether you are part of a fruit-of-the-month club or just have some extra oranges, lemons, limes, or grapefruits lying around, freezing is a great option…and don’t forget that lovely zest! *EXTRA TIP*: Once you’ve squeezed and zested your citrus fruits, quarter them and let your disposal grind up the leftover carcass. The citric acid not only works as a great cleanser in those hard to reach places, but the smell is bright and fragrant.