Summer is here, which calls for long lazy afternoons in the sun, sipping on yummy drinks. But don’t you just hate it when you are sipping on a delicious ice-cold lemonade, but the ice starts to melt speedily?
You gulp your drink or sip on a tepid, diluted, watery version of the lemonade. Reusable ice cubes are the answer! But what are reusable ice cubes?
Also known as chilling cubes, reusable ice cubes are artificial ice cubes that can be cooled to freezing temperatures. Once added to a glass, they chill the drink.
Unlike regular ice cubes, reusable ones do not melt, so your drink will not become watery and diluted.
There are different types of reusable ice cubes, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Read on if you want reusable ice cubes but are unsure which type to get.
What Materials Can Reusable Ice Cubes Be Made From?
The most significant advantage of ditching regular ice blocks for reusable ones is that your beverage won’t become a diluted, watered-down version of its former, packed-with-flavor self.
There are different types of reusable ice cubes, each with unique features.
Stone Ice Cubes
They are made of marble, granite, or soapstone and are available in various colors.
The marble is polished so that it does not absorb liquid. This is necessary to prevent mold or bacteria from forming on the stone cubes.
Stone ice cubes must sit in the freezer for at least three hours to get cold enough to chill your drink adequately.
Don’t expect stone cubes to turn drinks at temperature to ice-cold. It is best to add them to drinks that are already chilled so that the drink remains cold.
From an aesthetic point of view, these stone cubes make quite a statement in a glass.
Premium Whiskey Stones
- Made of polished marble
- Dark grey
- 12 pack
- 0.79 x 0.79 x 0.79 inches
Since metal reusable ice cubes like ones made from steel are highly conductive, they work excellently for cooling down a drink when frozen.
And because they get so cold, they tend to be smaller than other reusable ice cubes, leaving more space in the glass for your drink.
Of all reusable ice cube materials, the stainless-steel variety reaches the freezing point quickly.
After just two hours of sitting in the freezer, they will be ready to be added to your beverage. They will also keep your drink cool for longer than other materials.
Stainless steel ice cubes have an ultra-modern and sophisticated look. However, they can be heavy, especially if they are larger.
Choose smaller stainless steel ice cubes to avoid making your cocktail too heavy.
Reusable Stainless Steel Ice Cubes
- Made of genuine stainless steel
- Dishwasher safe
- Silver 24 pack
- High cooling capability
Plastic Ice Cubes – what is inside reusable ice cubes
My least favorite and most unsustainable choice are plastic reusable ice cubes. These come in many colors and shapes and contain distilled water or silica gel.
Like traditional ice cubes, the distilled water or silica gel melts over time but will not dilute your drink since it is in a plastic casing.
Plastic cubes containing distilled water will take the same time to freeze as regular cubes, which is about two to three hours. Plastic ice cubes containing silica-gel freeze quicker than water.
Since the plastic casing is fairly thin, they do not keep drinks cold for as long as ice cubes are made from stone or stainless steel.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t fancy putting plastic that may contain toxins like BPA or leak silica gel into something I’m drinking!
If the casing is damaged and the silica gel leaks into your drink and is ingested, it can be harmful.
If you do decide on plastic ice cubes, ensure they are BPA-free, and if possible, avoid using cubes that contain silica gel.
Furthermore, in a world where we are trying to use less plastic and even go plastic-free, it is a more environmentally friendly choice to choose a stone or stainless steel ice cube.
How Do You Use Reusable Ice Cubes?
Reusable ice cubes are simple to use. Pop them in the freezer. When you need to chill your drink, add them to the glass.
Once you have finished your drink, wash the ice cubes and place them back in the freezer.
Depending on the material, some reusable ice cubes can be placed in the dishwasher to be cleaned.
How long do reusable ice blocks last?
The life of reusable ice blocks depends on the material they are made from, how often they are used, and how well they are taken care of.
Stone or Stainless steel ice blocks could last years, but plastic blocks may only last a few months if used frequently.
To properly care for your reusable ice blocks so they last as long as possible, store them in a cool or dry place, ideally in the freezer or fridge, so they are ready for that urgent drink!
Don’t put plastic blocks in direct sunlight; rinse them with clean water after each use. Allow stone and plastic blocks to air dry completely before storing them outside the freezer.
Are reusable ice cubes safe?
If you buy quality stainless steel or stone reusable ice cubes, you should be very safe using them in drinks, etc.
Always check the materials used before using them and ensure no harmful additives exist. Cheap stone blocks may be prone to bits crumbling, so always go for quality polished marble.
If you use plastic reusable ice blocks, make them silicone or BPA-free plastic.
Are Reusable Ice Cubes Eco-Friendly?
We all need to reduce our water consumption. Having said that, using reusable ice cubes instead of regular cubes will not make a huge difference in the amount of water you use.
As mentioned above, avoid plastic ice cubes if you want a more eco-friendly option.
Which Reusable Ice Cubes Are the Best?
Plastic is not good for the environment, and silica-gel-filled ice cubes can be hazardous if damaged. Plastic ice cubes also won’t keep your drink cold for as long as other materials.
Stone cubes are perfect if you are a connoisseur of whiskey or bourbon. The stone material won’t alter the taste of the alcohol in any way, and it will chill the drink gently.
The stainless-steel variety is considered the best reusable ice cubes because they are efficient at cooling down a beverage and keeping the drink cool for a longer period than other materials.
What’s more, stainless steel is a food-grade material, so they are safest to use and won’t alter the taste of your drink.
There is also no danger of damaging stainless-steel ice cubes and contaminating your drink. Stainless steel ice cubes can also be cleaned in the dishwasher.
On the downside, stainless steel ice cubes are the most expensive type of reusable ice cubes.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Reusable Ice Cubes
How Long Does It Take Reusable Ice Cubes to Freeze?
Reusable ice cubes typically take about 2 to 4 hours to freeze, depending on the material and the temperature of the freezer. It’s best to consult the instructions that come with your specific brand of reusable ice cubes for the most accurate freezing time.
Whiskey Stones vs Ice: What’s The Difference?
Whiskey stones are often made from natural stones like soapstone and are designed to chill beverages without diluting them. Traditional ice, on the other hand, cools drinks but melts over time, which can dilute the flavor. Reusable ice cubes offer a middle ground, providing cooling without dilution, and they can be used repeatedly.
How Do You Clean Reusable Ice Cubes?
Cleaning reusable ice cubes is generally simple. Most can be washed with warm soapy water and then rinsed thoroughly. Some are even dishwasher-safe. Refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for the best cleaning method for your specific reusable ice cubes.
How Long Do Reusable Ice Cubes Stay Cold?
Depending on their material and design, reusable ice cubes stay cold for varying amounts of time. Most will keep your drink chilled for approximately 30 minutes to an hour. For extended cooling, you may want to use multiple reusable ice cubes or chill your beverage beforehand.
What are the benefits of reusable ice cubes?
The benefits of reusable ice cubes include:
- Eco-friendly – Reusable ice cubes are an eco-friendly alternative to disposable ice cubes.
- Economical – Reusable ice cubes are more economical than store-bought ice cubes.
- Convenient – Reusable ice cubes are convenient and easy to use.
- Versatile – Reusable ice cubes can be used in various drinks, including soda, water, and cocktails.
- Durable – Reusable ice cubes are durable and long-lasting.
- Safe – Reusable ice cubes are safe and made from food-grade materials.
- Easy to clean – Reusable ice cubes are easy to clean and can be washed in the dishwasher.
- Stylish – Reusable ice cubes come in various styles and colors to suit your needs.
- Perfect for parties – Reusable ice cubes are perfect for parties and gatherings.
- Keeps drinks cold – Reusable ice cubes help keep your drink cold for a longer period of time.
Summer is a great time to invest in reusable ice cubes. They will be great to use at your next BBQ or when you are entertaining, as they will make your drinks look snazzier.
They will also prevent drinks from getting watery and losing flavor. But you don’t have to wait for a special occasion. Add them to your glass every day, and enjoy!