How to Make Popsicles at Home
Popsicles have got to be one of the most versatile yet simple recipes that you can try at home. They appeal to all ages and all tastes – they can be as healthy or as decadent as you want them to be. Children love to take part in making them and because there is no cooking involved, they can do most of the preparation themselves. You can even make a sophisticated version of a popsicle to serve at the end of a dinner party! Here we share a selection of the most popular recipes for homemade popsicles. Don’t forget that you can adapt them to suit your own tastes – the only limit is your imagination!
Why Make Homemade Popsicles?
The sun comes out and you start craving something cool and full of flavor! Of course you could always pop to the store and get some icy pops or ice cream but these tend to be packed with sugar, artificial sweeteners and additives. With the sugar comes the extra calories and suddenly the store-bought frozen treats are looking less attractive!
Homemade popsicles are packed with healthy and nutritious ingredients and are very low in calories. There is an infinite variety of popsicle flavors and experimenting is half the fun.
If you are struggling to get your child to eat fresh fruit, they are the perfect solution. Kids will enjoy making them just as much as they will love to eat them.
What do you Need to Make Homemade Popsicles?
Popsicle recipes are very simple but as well as the ingredients, you will need some basic equipment. To chop up the fruit you will need a knife and a chopping board. You may also want to blend the fruit in some recipes and if it is too hard to mash with a fork, you will need a hand blender.
Then, of course, you will need some popsicle molds. These come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and in many fun designs. Don’t forget that they must be able to fit in your freezer!
How Long do Popsicles Take to Freeze?
This is the hard part, especially for kids! It will take between four and six hours for most mixtures to freeze solid. The best plan is to freeze them overnight. Don’t forget that popsicles will not freeze like plain water. As soon as you start dissolving things in water, you lower the freezing point. The fruit introduces natural sugars, minerals, and proteins and this means that a lower temperature is needed to make the solution solid. The fruit juice in the popsicle will not actually freeze completely and will still be quite slushy. This is a good thing – it makes the popsicle easier to bite!
Three Simple Popsicle Recipes
Here are four delicious recipes for homemade popsicles. Each one will provide around 10 average size popsicles. Enjoy!
Peach Strawberry Yogurt Popsicles
Not only is yogurt delicious, it also provides valuable calcium and if you use live yogurt it is a source of probiotics which are so good for gut health. It gives this recipe a creamy and smooth texture and combines perfectly with the berries and honey
- Pureed strawberries (3 cups)
- Pureed peaches (3 cups)
- Honey (2 tablespoons)
- Vanilla or plain Greek yogurt (⅔ cup)
Puree the strawberries with half of the honey and then puree the peeled and sliced peaches with the other half. Layer the ingredients in the popsicle as follows:
- 2 teaspoons strawberry puree
- 1 teaspoon Greek yogurt
- 2 teaspoons peach puree
Repeat until the mold is full and then gently tap it and add another layer if needed. Using a small spoon, create a few swirls between the layers by dragging it up from the bottom. Tap again to remove air bubbles, insert the popsicle sticks and freeze for at least six hours.
Minty Watermelon Popsicles
There is nothing more refreshing on a hot day than a watermelon and mint combo. Add in the subtle taste of unsweetened coconut and you have the ultimate thirst quencher. The addition of chopped watermelon introduces both texture and visual appeal.
- Sliced watermelon with seeds removed (3 slices)
- Fresh mint leaves (1 tablespoon)
- Coconut water (1 ½ cups)
- Lime juice (2 tablespoons)
- Honey (1 tablespoon)
In a blender, puree most of the watermelon with the mint, coconut water, lime juice and honey. Chop up the remaining watermelon into ¼-inch cubes and put it in the bottom of the popsicle molds. Give them a tap to make it settle. Pour in the popsicle mixture and insert the sticks. Freeze overnight and enjoy the next day.
Blackberry Lemon Popsicles
Naturally sweet fruit such as blackberries go so well with lemon or lime juice. If you are a raspberry lover – these can be used just as well. The acidity reduces the icy texture and makes the popsicle easier to eat straight from the freezer. By adding juice such as orange or lemon juice, you stop the pops from melting so quickly which is essential on a hot day! The combination of puree and juice (together with the creaminess of the yogurt) intensifies both flavors.
- Lemon juice (⅔ cup)
- Zest from one lemon
- Natural Greek yogurt (2 ½ cups)
- Blackberries (2 ½ cups)
- Mixed berry yogurt (2 ½ cups)
Using a whisk, combine the lemon juice, lemon zest and plain yogurt in a bowl. In a separate bowl, use a hand-held blender to puree the blackberries together with the mixed berry yogurt. Layer the ingredients in the popsicles as follows
- 1 tablespoon lemon mixture
- 1 tablespoon blackberry mixture
Continue until the mold is full, then tap to remove any air bubbles and swirl the layers with a spoon. Freeze for at least six hours.
Orange Mango Coconut Popsicles
For a tropical taste like no other – you can’t beat mango and coconut. The addition of the coconut milk gives these popsicles an ice cream texture that is simply delicious!
- Mango (4 cups)
- Coconut milk (2 cups)
- Orange juice (3 tablespoons)
- Honey (3 tablespoons)
Use a blender to puree 3/4 of the mango with 1 ½ cups of coconut milk, orange juice and honey. Chop up the remaining mango into small cubes and put them in the molds. Into each mold, add a layer of the mango coconut mixture, tap gently and then add a layer of coconut milk. Insert the popsicle sticks and then freeze overnight.
Top Popsicle Tip
Don’t ruin your icy treats by removing them from the popsicle mold in the wrong way! The best method is to run the exterior of the molds under warm running water for about 10 seconds. Then you very slowly remove each one. If it does not slide out of the mold easily, run it under the water again for a few seconds.