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Best Ice Molds

Updated November 2018
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 62 Models Considered
  • 6 Hours Researched
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 112 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best ice molds

    Last Updated November 2018

    Do you have a classy bar cart and want the perfect ice for your fancy cocktails? Tired of using an ice tray that leaks all over your freezer? The perfect ice mold is mess-free and easy to use, and it allows you to make frozen cubes, spheres, or other shapes that keep your drinks chilled.

    We at BestReviews have done the research for you, so you can focus on mixing great drinks to serve to your guests. Whether you’re looking to impress your friends or just want a practical ice-making solution for the family, there is an ice mold out there for you.

    Our shopping guide includes information on the various types of molds and ice shapes. The ideal ice shape doesn’t just look classy, it helps to keep your drink cold without watering it down. Cool off and drink up as you find out about ice molds.

    Novelty molds are perfect for children’s birthday parties. Freeze a tray of crescent moon- or star-shaped ice for a party with a science fiction theme.

    Types of ice molds

    Single: These molds make one ice cube, usually a large one. These molds are great for occasional use but not ideal for party settings. It would be too time-consuming to make a batch of ice with a single mold.

    Tray: A tray enables you to create several frozen cubes or shapes at one time. Trays are best for everyday use. They come in a variety of sizes. The larger trays are useful for making ice in bulk for parties.

    Novelty: You can make fun ice in nontraditional shapes with novelty ice molds. These are available as trays and single molds. You can make ice shaped like animals or cartoon or movie characters for everyday use or parties. Novelty ice shapes add a unique touch to a themed event.

    Japanese: A Japanese mold is an expensive tool that compresses an ice cube into a spherical shape. While some less-expensive round molds produce imperfect balls of ice, a Japanese mold creates perfectly round spheres of ice every time.

    Ice mold shapes

    Ice molds come in many different formats and sizes. You have the option of creating a variety of different ice shapes depending on the mold you select.

    Half-moons and small cubes are common shapes found in trays. These smaller cubes are suitable for drinks that go down quickly, since they tend to melt rapidly.

    Mini ice cubes and crushed ice are best for strong drinks that taste better with a little watering down.

    Large cubes, spears, and spheres are best for drinks that take longer to sip. These melt slowly and won’t rapidly dilute beverages. Big chunks of ice are best for chilling alcohol like whiskey. Spears are great for tall glasses. Spherical ice is an attractive and unusual option that’s perfect for impressing guests.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    You can use an ice mold or tray to freeze fresh herbs from the garden.

    Ice mold features to consider

    Size: Most molds make anywhere from one to a dozen ice cubes. Some trays hold as many as 24 cubes. Need ice for a get-together or dinner party? Look for a mold that makes several pieces of ice at once. Single molds enable you to create larger ice shapes. Larger-capacity molds usually produce smaller ice cubes. Keep in mind that bigger molds will take up more room in your freezer, so make sure you have enough space for the mold you choose.

    Material: Most ice molds on the market today are BPA-free. You can choose from molds made of silicone, plastic, or metal.

    • Silicone: It’s easy to pop the cubes out of these inexpensive flexible molds. You’ll need to place silicone molds on a solid, level surface in the freezer because the bendy material has a tendency to tip and spill. Silicone also tends to absorb odors.

    • Plastic: Plastic is more rigid than silicone, but you can find plastic molds that are slightly flexible to make it easier to remove the ice. Plastic is very durable, but poor-quality plastic molds can crack.

    • Metal/stainless steel: These traditional molds are very durable, but metal is stiff and inflexible, which makes it harder to remove the ice without cracking it. Some retro stainless-steel molds have a lever to make it easy to pop out the ice cubes.
       

    Stackability: Making ice cubes requires that your ice molds spend time in the freezer. You’ll need space so that they don’t tip over or get knocked about. If you envision using more than one mold or tray, make sure to choose models that stack comfortably on top of one another.

    Lids: If you’re worried about odors from the rest of your freezer contents seeping into your ice, you can keep your cubes fresher by choosing a tray or mold with a lid. A cover also helps prevent leaks and makes it easier to stack multiple molds. A good lid should go on easily and stay closed. You don’t want to end up with one big block of ice after your mold or tray tumbles over in the freezer. A well-sealed, properly fitting lid can help prevent this.

    Easy to use: An ice mold is a kitchen tool you’ll use again and again, so pick one that makes your life easier. Getting ice out of the tray or mold should be simple, not a struggle. Cubes should come out in one piece without cracking. Flexible molds make it easy to pop out the ice.

    Easy to clean: You should also be able to wash the ice mold easily. For extra convenience, look for molds that are dishwasher safe. If in doubt, clean your ice molds with gentle soap and warm water.

    Air bubbles can cause ice to crack. Boil the water first to prevent air bubbles from forming. Your ice won’t break as easily and will be clearer. Just don’t pour boiling hot water into plastic ice molds!

    Tom Collins: The perfect iced cocktail

    Serve this refreshing cocktail at your next dinner party.

    Ingredients

    Ice spears

    2 ounces gin

    1/2 to 1 ounce simple syrup (depending on sweetness desired)

    1 ounce citrus juice (lemon or lime)

    1 ounce tonic water

    Citrus slices

    Directions

    Combine gin, simple syrup, and citrus juice in a shaker filled with ice. Shake, and strain into glass. Add tonic water, stir, and garnish with citrus slice and ice spear.

    EXPERT TIP

    Freeze coffee into ice cubes for your iced coffee. You can enjoy a chilled caffeinated drink on a hot summer day without it getting diluted.


    Staff  | BestReviews

    Ice mold prices

    Inexpensive: Trays made of plastic or silicone typically cost less than $10.

    Mid-range: Molds made of stainless steel, single molds for spherical ice, or molds in novelty shapes cost $10 to $30.

    Premium: If you’re looking for a fancier option and don’t mind spending the extra cash, Japanese ice molds will set you back at least $300. Also available are automated devices that churn out specific shapes of ice. These are designed for commercial use and are extremely expensive.

    Bartenders often use spherical ice to keep drinks chilled because they won’t dilute the drink too quickly. Impress the guests at your next party by using a mold that makes spherical ice.

    FAQ

    Q. Is there a shape of ice that will keep my drinks colder longer?

    A. The larger the cube, the slower the melting speed. To slow the melting process, use big ice cubes that take up almost the entire glass, and avoid filling the glass to the top.

    Q. My ice has a weird aftertaste. What’s going on?

    A. It could be your ice cube mold. Some users complain of plastic tastes leaching into their ice. The aftertaste could also be the result of odors being absorbed by your ice in open trays and molds. Look for ice molds with tight-fitting lids to avoid contamination.

    Q. My silicone ice mold smells of freezer burn. Can I get rid of this?

    A. Silicone tends to absorb odors more readily than other materials. There are a few options that will strip them of that nasty freezer-burn smell. One is to bake your trays in the oven at 350°F. Just make sure the molds can tolerate the heat. Molds or trays with any traces of plastic will melt in the oven. Other options include soaking the ice mold in vinegar or using baking soda to neutralize the odor.

    Q. Why isn’t my ice clear?

    A. Minerals in water can cause homemade ice cubes to appear cloudy. If you’re very particular about the appearance of your ice, you can try to use filtered water, but getting perfectly clear ice at home is a challenge.

    The team that worked on this review
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      Bronwyn
      Editor
    • Devangana
      Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Enid
      Enid
      Editor
    • Kailey
      Kailey
      Writer
    • Melinda
      Melinda
      Web Producer
    • Steph
      Steph
      Writer

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