Hospital Ice Chips: Making and Buying
Hospital ice chips hold a special place in the hearts of many people who have been hospitalized. These small, chewable ice chips are not only refreshing, but also provide a sense of comfort during a difficult time. While it may be difficult to find similar ice chips for sale in stores, making them at home is an easy and rewarding process. In this article, we will explore various methods for making hospital ice chips and provide insight on where to purchase them.
Making Hospital Ice Chips
There are several methods you can use to make hospital ice chips in the comfort of your own home. Each method offers a unique approach to achieving the desired texture and flavor. Let’s explore these methods:
Making hospital ice with a baking sheet
One of the easiest and quickest ways to make hospital ice chips is to use a baking sheet. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do it:
- Choose a flat baking pan or sheet that will easily fit in your freezer.
- Clean the baking sheet to remove any debris or residue.
- Pour water into the baking sheet, making sure to pour to the desired thickness for your ice chips.
- Place the baking sheet in the freezer, making sure it is flat and level.
- After about 30 minutes, check to see if the water has completely frozen. If not, let it sit for another 20 to 30 minutes.
- When the water is frozen, hold the baking sheet at both ends and twist it in opposite directions. This will shatter the ice sheet into ice chips.
- If desired, use a heavy tool to break the ice chips into smaller pieces.
- Place the ice chips in a container and store in the freezer until ready to use.
Make hospital ice with sparkling water
An interesting trick to achieve a hospital ice-like texture is to use carbonated water instead of plain water. The carbonation creates small bubbles in the ice, making it lighter and easier to chew. Here’s how to make hospital ice chips with sparkling water:
- Freeze sparkling water in a regular ice tray. The resulting ice cubes are lighter and softer than regular ice cubes.
- Alternatively, pour sparkling water into a plastic freezer bag, leaving some room for expansion, and seal the bag after removing excess air.
- Place the bag in the freezer and allow to freeze completely.
- Once frozen, gently pound the bag with a rolling pin or meat tenderizer to break the ice into small, chewable ice chips.
- Transfer the ice chips to a container and store in the freezer until ready to eat.
Making hospital ice with an ice nugget machine
If you use a significant amount of ice at home and are willing to invest in a specialized appliance, an ice nugget machine can provide you with hospital ice-like results. Here’s how it works:
- Buy an ice nugget machine that pumps water into a freezing metal cylinder.
- When the water hits the cylinder, it freezes, and a spinning auger scrapes the ice off the walls and pushes it out as small ice nuggets.
- The resulting ice nuggets closely resemble the texture of hospital ice.
- Choose a machine size that fits your needs and enjoy the convenience of having ice nuggets at home.
Make hospital ice with a blender
If you don’t want to invest in a special machine, you can use a blender to achieve a texture similar to hospital ice. Here’s how:
- Put regular ice cubes in a blender, using the blade designed for crushing ice.
- Switch blender to pulse mode and pulse ice cubes until desired consistency is achieved.
- The resulting ice chips are smaller and easier to chew than regular ice cubes.
- Some blenders have a dedicated ice crushing function that simplifies the process. However, it’s beneficial to be able to control the crushing time to achieve the desired ice chip size.
Making Hospital Ice with a Meat Tenderizer
If you’re looking for a quick solution to satisfy a sudden craving for hospital ice, you can use a meat tenderizer or hammer. Here’s how:
- Take store-bought or homemade ice cubes and place them in a plastic freezer bag or wrap them in a clean dishcloth.
- Fold the bag or cloth to cover the ice, and use a meat tenderizer, hammer, rolling pin, or heavy-bottomed pot to break the ice into smaller shards and chips.
- Adjust the force and frequency of the blows to control the size of the ice chips to your liking.
Making hospital ice with a mini ice cube tray
Mini ice cube trays are a convenient way to make small ice cubes that closely resemble hospital ice chips. Here’s how to use a mini ice cube tray:
- Fill the mini ice cube tray with water, leaving a small gap at the top to allow for expansion during freezing.
- Place the tray in the freezer and allow the water to freeze completely.
- Once frozen, remove the tray from the freezer and gently twist or tap to release the mini ice cubes.
- Transfer the mini ice cubes to a container and store in the freezer until ready to use.
Buy hospital ice chips
While making hospital ice chips at home can be a rewarding experience, you may also be interested in purchasing them for convenience or to try different flavors. Here are some places to buy hospital ice chips:
Several online retailers specialize in selling hospital ice chips. A quick search on e-commerce platforms or specialty food websites can give you a variety of options. Look for retailers that offer high-quality ice chips made with filtered water for the best taste and texture.
Local hospitals or medical supply stores
Some hospitals or medical supply stores may offer hospital ice chips for sale. Contact your local healthcare facilities or check their websites to inquire about availability. This option allows you to support local businesses while enjoying the convenience of purchasing ready-made hospital ice chips.
Specialty Food Stores
Certain specialty food stores or gourmet shops may carry hospital ice chips or similar products. These stores often curate unique and hard-to-find foods, making them a potential source for this delicious treat. Visit or contact specialty food stores in your area to explore their offerings.
Ice cream parlors or frozen yogurt shops
Ice cream parlors or frozen yogurt shops sometimes offer hospital ice chips as a topping option. These establishments may sell small containers of ice chips separately or include them with your ice cream or frozen yogurt purchase. Check with your local parlors or shops to see if they offer this option.
Hospital ice chips hold a special place in the hearts of many, providing a refreshing and comforting treat during a hospital stay. Making hospital ice chips at home is a simple process that can be accomplished using a variety of methods, such as a baking sheet, sparkling water, an ice nugget machine, a blender, a meat tenderizer, or a mini ice cube tray. In addition, purchasing hospital ice chips from online retailers, local hospitals or medical supply stores, specialty food stores, or ice cream parlors provides convenience and access to this delicious treat. Whether you choose to make or buy hospital ice chips, they are sure to bring a sense of nostalgia and enjoyment. So go ahead, indulge in these icy treats and enjoy the memories they bring back.
Can I make hospital ice chips at home?
Yes, you can make hospital ice chips at home using a variety of methods, including freezing water on a baking sheet, using sparkling water, using an ice nugget maker, mixing ice cubes, or using a meat tenderizer.
What is the advantage of hospital ice chips over regular ice cubes?
Hospital ice chips are smaller and thinner than regular ice cubes. This makes them quicker to freeze, easier to chew and more refreshing.
How do I make Hospital Ice Chips using a baking sheet?
To make hospital ice chips with a cookie sheet, pour water onto a clean cookie sheet, freeze until solid, and then break it apart by twisting the sheet. This will create hospital ice chips that can be broken into smaller pieces if desired.
Where can I buy hospital ice chips?
You can purchase hospital ice chips from online retailers that specialize in selling them, local hospitals or medical supply stores, specialty food stores, or ice cream parlors and frozen yogurt shops that offer them as a topping option.
Are there alternatives to making hospital ice chips at home?
If you prefer not to make hospital ice chips at home, you can explore alternatives such as purchasing them from various sources mentioned above or looking for similar chewable ice products available on the market.
Can I use sparkling water to make hospital ice chips?
Yes, using sparkling water is an interesting way to make hospital ice chips lighter and easier to chew. You can freeze carbonated water in ice trays or freezer bags and then break it into small, chewable ice chips.