How To Keep Ice Cream Perfectly Scoopable

Although it's practically impossible to forget about a tub of ice cream in the freezer, it does happen. And while that pint that got hidden behind bags of frozen veg for months is a welcome surprise when you spot it, that excitement quickly fades when you open it and see a thick layer of freezer burn on top. While still safe to eat, the texture won't be creamy like fresh ice cream, as the formation of ice crystals dries out the dairy treat. 

Luckily, it doesn't take much to prevent this from happening, even if you stash a container for an extended period. Just start storing your ice cream in a Ziploc bag — meaning as soon as you get home from the grocery store, place your pint in a gallon-sized zip-top bag and put it in the freezer. Aside from creating an airtight container for when you open the pint, a Ziploc bag will create a cushion of air around your ice cream, which will keep it prevent it from getting too cold. Although it will stay frozen, the extra layer of insulation should help stave off those pesky ice crystals. 

How to prevent your ice cream from getting freezer burn

While this hack is a simple one, there's an important part to remember here: When closing your ice cream carton-filled plastic bag, you'll want to make sure to squeeze all the air out before closing it (each time). This mimics the effect of a vacuum-sealed bag, which is really the most ideal way to prevent freezer burn since the resulting lack of air prevents moisture from leaving your ice cream container. But for those of us who don't have a vacuum-sealed bag or who don't want to jump through hoops every time they want a scoop, pressing the air out of your Ziploc version should work just fine.

If you want to maximize the effect even more, try storing your pint upside down in the plastic bag after you've eaten some ice cream. Instead of the surface of the dessert evaporating and turning into ice crystals, the melted parts will freeze on the lid, creating a barrier between your untouched food and the outside air. You can also try placing a piece of parchment paper between the ice cream and the lid (or not throwing the original seal away) so that moisture is less likely to escape your pint. Then even if you forget about your dessert, you'll still be surprised with creamy, perfectly scoopable ice cream.