Last updated on September 16th, 2022 at 09:35 am
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Ice cream is a delicious frozen treat which is made with milk and sugar or cream. If you hate eating entirely frozen ice cream you might be wondering if it is safe to keep it in the fridge for a bit to help soften it up.
Ice cream should always be kept in the freezer. It can site out for a couple of minutes to soften but beyond that it should remain in the freezer.
Ice cream is meant to be frozen; you should not put it in the fridge. However, if your ice cream is too frozen to scoop you can place it into the fridge to allow it to thaw a little before you scoop it.
It’s faster to simply set the ice cream out on the counter for this purpose though and if you forget about it in the fridge you will have to throw it all away.
So I would never recommend putting it in the fridge even for a short time.
Is It Bad To Put Ice Cream In The Fridge?
Ice cream is meant to be frozen, but is putting it in the fridge bad for it.
Ice cream should not be kept in the fridge for long periods of time as it will not hold its original texture. It will also begin to grow bacteria if store in the fridge for too long.
If you put your ice cream into the fridge then forget that it’s there only to find that it has melted, you can still eat it immediately but it should be refrozen is that is when it could make people sick.
Placing ice cream into the fridge to allow it to thaw so that you can scoop it easier or shoving your dish of ice cream into the fridge while you quickly tend to something else is not going to hurt your ice cream. It will obviously melt but you can safely eat this ice cream after a few minutes and it won’t hurt you.
Thawed ice cream however should never be refrozen. Ice cream that has thawed and been refrozen could contain bacteria that will make you sick.
If you have left your ice cream out on the counter and forgot about it and it you can not safely refreeze it then either.
Refreezing ice cream that was left out on the counter or left in the fridge will give the opportunity for bacteria to grow which could make you sick when you consume it later on.
Does Ice Cream Go In The Freezer Or Fridge?
Ice cream is a frozen confectionary that should be stored at ten degrees Fahrenheit or lower. With this in mind ice cream should always be kept in the freezer.
Exposing ice cream to temperatures that are higher than ten degrees Fahrenheit will change the texture and could possibly even affect the flavor of your ice cream.
Not to mention it gives rise to the possibility of it making you sick.
If you are constantly allowing your ice cream to thaw in the fridge and then refreezing it in the freezer you will develop ice crystals in your ice cream and expose yourself to possible bacteria.
Since ice cream should be kept at ten degrees Fahrenheit or colder you will want to make sure that it is the last thing that you place into your cart when you are grocery shopping. If you can, check the temperature of the store’s freezer compartment to make sure that the ice cream in the store was kept at the optimal temperature or lower as well.
If you can not find the temperature on the store’s freezer you can squeeze the carton of ice cream before you buy it. If it has been stored at the proper temperature it will be hard and not have much give to the carton. If the ice cream carton does have a lot of give to it then it was not kept at the proper temperature.
That should be brought to the store’s attention.
After purchasing your ice cream, you will want to go straight home so that it does not have time to thaw on the drive home. As soon as you get home you should place your ice cream into the freezer.
You should store ice cream in the center of the freezer and not on the door. The door of your freezer experiences fluctuating temperatures due to it constantly being opened and closed.
So ice cream kept in or near the freezer door could thaw out some again leaving you exposed to changing flavor/texture and possible bacteria.
How Do You Keep Ice Cream From Melting While Travelling?
If you are like me, you might have a long drive to and from the store. We live an hour away from the nearest Sam’s Club so it takes a bit of time to get home after getting groceries when we shop there.
How do you keep your ice cream from melting when you’re travelling?
You can use salt and ice in a cooler to keep your ice cream frozen while you are traveling. Ice alone will not keep your ice cream frozen in a cooler. If you add salt to your ice that will actually lower the temperature of the ice.
As ice melts it uses the warm air around it so when you add salt to your ice that will cause the ice to melt faster which actually lowers the temperature in your cooler. The combination of ice and salt is what is used to make homemade ice cream.
If you are going to use salt and ice to keep your ice cream frozen you will want to place your tub of ice cream in freezer bags to keep it safe from all the water. As the ice melts the water will fill the cooler. You don’t want your carton of ice cream to be floating in a puddle of water.
You will then want to place your ice cream in the bottom of the cooler. Do not place a layer of ice on the bottom of the cooler. Cold air sinks and hot air rises so you will want your ice cream on the bottom where it will be colder. Cover your ice cream with plenty of ice, then pour a generous amount of salt across the top of the ice.
The more salt that you use the faster the ice will melt. The faster that the ice melts the colder your cooler will become. Then securely close your cooler lid.
Now your ice cream will stay frozen on the ride home from the store or if you are travelling. This is a great way to pack some ice cream cups to take on a day trip.
That would be a great surprise for your kids to find ice cream cups for dessert on a picnic lunch.
How Can You Tell If Ice Cream Has Been Refrozen?
Ice cream melts fairly rapidly when it is left at room temperature. Ice cream that has melted and then been refrozen can be a health hazard. Ice cream that has been left on the counter or out in the aisle at the grocery store waiting to be stocked into the freezer can develop food borne bacteria such as listeria.
How can you tell if the ice cream you have has been thawed and then refrozen?
Ice cream that has been thawed and then frozen again will be harder and will have shrunk in the carton. This happens from the ice cream losing all the air bubbles that have fluffed it up when it was first made. If it had not melted then it would still fill the carton completely.
The carton of a thawed and then frozen again ice cream might also be sticky or have frost on the package. The frost develops from the condensation that appeared on the carton while the ice cream was thawing.
When that carton with condensation was placed back into the freezer the condensation then froze forming a frost on the carton. When you open your carton of ice cream and see that the texture is not as it should be or that it has ice crystals on the ice cream then it has thawed and then been frozen again.