A few fresh slices of fruit can jazz up any drink with a bit of extra sweet flavor and bright color! Take your drink-making to the next level by using beautifully frozen fruit cubes in your next round of cocktails, lemonade, or plain H2O.
Sometimes, the ingredients that look the most complex are actually the easiest to make. That's the case for these fruit ice cubes full of colorful chopped fruit in crystal clear ice spheres – they're straightforward, inexpensive, and yet a huge crowd pleaser.
Whether you're adding bright fruit cubes to make a cold pitcher of water a little more exciting, or creating flavored ice cubes for cocktails, they're so simple to make and can keep in the freezer for months on end until the next time you want one.
Use the simple steps below to make some beautifully fruit-flavored ice cubes to amp up your next batch of drinks to delight kids and adults alike!
What are Fruit Ice Cubes?
Fruit ice contains just two simple ingredients: chopped fruit and water. You can make fruit ice cubes by placing fresh fruit in an ice cube tray and topping it with filtered water.
As the fruit ice cubes melt, the frozen fruit's flavor spreads through your drink and adds a sweet, fruity flavor that can complement the beverage well.
You can use just about any fruit or fruit combos to make fruit ice cubes, so the flavor possibilities are practically endless!
These fruit cubes are multi-purpose, as they'll enhance a drink's flavor and act as an edible garnish.
5 Benefits of Fruit Ice Cubes
1) Great way to use up fruit.
If you have too much fresh, ripe fruit to eat and worry it will spoil before you can get to it - chop it up and freeze it in fruit cubes.
You can cut down significantly on food waste by freezing fresh produce for fruit ice cubes when appropriate.
2) Saves in-season fruit.
Local, in-season fruit tastes far better than the types that have traveled several days to reach your grocery store.
By freezing fruit cubes when the fruit is in-season, you'll be able to enjoy that delicious taste year-round.
In-season, local fruit also tends to be less expensive, so you can save yourself some money by buying extra in the right season to freeze and purchasing less fresh fruit in the off-season.
3) They're full of vitamins and minerals.
Fresh fruits are whole, plant-based foods that are some of the most vitamin and mineral-rich foods on earth.
The mineral content varies from fruit to fruit, so switch up the fruit you use in your ice fruit drink cubes to get a balanced variety of essential vitamins and minerals.
There can be some concern about the sugar content in fruit, but unlike white sugar and high-fructose corn syrup, natural fruit sugars are paired with high fiber content, keeping blood sugar levels well balanced.
Fiber also slows down the body's digestion process, so you can use fruit cubes as a source of extra fiber to help promote eating less throughout the day.
4) They last forever.
The freezer life of these fruit cubes is pretty long, so you can make them well ahead of time and store plenty of extras in sealed freezer bags to free up your ice cube maker.
If your fruit cubes stay fully frozen, they can easily last 12-18 months in your freezer.
5) They offer some extra hydration.
We require a certain base level of water in our bodies to perform a load of essential functions like body temperature regulation, joint lubrication, organ function, and nutrient delivery to cells.
Some people struggle to drink enough water in a day, and these fruit cubes add a little extra water to our beverages and a whole lot of motivation.
If you don't love plain drinking water, add some fruit cubes to get yourself excited about drinking more, and infuse some sweet flavor without unhealthy chemicals or added sugars.
Ice fruity cubes are also an excellent option for fussy kids, who have more fun drinking water with a little splash of colorful fruit in it.
Where to Use Fruit Cubes
These frozen cubes taste great in a variety of beverages. Here are a few of our favorite beverage and flavor combos:
- Lemon and lime, orange, or pineapple in chilled water
- Cranberries in fresh-squeezed orange juice
- Strawberries to add some sweetness to fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice
- Raspberries in a pitcher of tangy lemonade
- A variety of fruity cubes, blended into smoothies
- Blueberries in minty rum mojitos
- Strawberry ice cubes in a lime margarita on the rocks
- Blueberries, raspberries, and rosemary in a craft tonic with gin
- Kiwi and pineapple in a flute of champagne or sparkling wine
- Oranges and cherries in a red sangria
- Tangy green apple in a cold cider cocktail
These are just a few options to try – there are many, many, awesome combinations you can make with these fruity ice cubes!
How to Make Fruit Ice: Step-by-Step
Step 1: Clean and prep your fruit.
- Always wash your fresh fruit before you eat it, as it often carries bacteria from its travels and residual pesticides. Use warm water and mild soap, or one that’s specified for fruit washing.
- Peel the fruit if you'd like, and chop up larger fruits like apple, pineapple, and oranges. You can leave small fruits like blueberries whole.
Step 2: Make the molds.
- Grab an empty ice cube tray. For the best results, use an ice ball maker that uses directional freezing methods to give you a crystal clear ball that pushes impurities out of the water as it freezes. Clear ice also looks a lot nicer than the cloudy cubes from a traditional ice tray.
- Place your fruit in the ice cube tray and top each mold with water. Double boil some filtered water for the most transparent cubes, or simply use filtered water.
Step 3: Freeze and store.
- Place your ice cubes in the freezer for at least 4 hours or overnight. Once frozen, remove your fruity ice cubes from their tray or molds.
- Serve the cubes immediately, or keep in the freezer for up to 18 months.
What Fruit Can Be Frozen?
You can freeze every single fruit to make fruit cubes. Unsliced fruits with firmer skins, like cranberries, make a better-looking garnish but don't flavor the drink as strongly. In contrast, soft sliced fruit like watermelon will become a little mushy as it melts, but adds a strong, deliciously fruity flavor to your drink.
These are just a few of the best fruits to freeze:
- Lemon and lime
Final Notes: Fruit Ice Cubes
Fruit cubes can add a beautiful look and taste to your drinks with almost zero effort.
Plus, you'll reap the benefits of using fruit cubes:
- They help to use up ripe fruit you won't eat in time
- You can save inexpensive, sweet in-season fruits to enjoy year-round
- They'll help to keep you hydrated
- They offer a solid dose of vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber
We hope you enjoy finding your favorite fruit ice to enjoy in your water, smoothies, and delicious cocktails!