Ice Cube Trays

It help, but boiling water (getting more gases out) is not the only cause for unclear ice

Educate me.

I did read a silly piece about boiling the distilled water twice, and directional freezing (requiring emptying your freezer, salt brine and other completely impractical steps). But is there a reasonably practical way to make clear ice?

Two things… Pure Water, and Directional Freezing.

For pure water consider a ZeroWater pitcher. The ZeroWater filter will remove 100% of the total dissolved solids from your water. I’ve used one for years and it really works (plus is cheap).

For directional freezing you can use a small insulated cooler, which is kind of a PITA because you have to cut your ice.

Something like this is way more convenient:

Thanks. Are there dissolved solids in distilled water?

$50 is a little dear for the mold.

There shouldn’t be, but I have never measured it.

Yeah, but that is one of the cheaper ones (and highly rated). I have seen some that do spheres for over a hundred bucks.

I guess clear ice is not that important to me if I have to spend that kind of money.

Like I said before, you can use a small cooler… or any well insulated 3 sided vessel that will let the water freeze from the top down.

You could actually make your own in the size and shape of your liking with styrofoam and hot glue.

If the issues are TDS and O2, I’d rather just sparge distilled water with N2.

Sorry. I think what you said is true. I was just saying that boiling water (to reduce air in water) is one of the many things.

TDS are an issue. When I stopped buying bottled water in favor of the ZeroWater filters, I did notice my ice came out clearer (but not totally clear - still had a cloudy center).

When ice freezes from all sides, any contaminants OR gas molecules are forced to the center area last frozen, which makes it cloudy, even if the water is completely pure. What freezes first will be clear… and what freezes last will have any ions/gasses that exist concentrated in that area (making it cloudy).

Sorry… no matter what you do with your water, this is going to be the case. So you need the water to freeze as much as possible from one plane only. This will force the cloudiness to the opposite side of that plane.

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I understand the principle. But absent driving the cloudiness out of the mold, it’ll still be on the far/slowest side of the cube, yes?

The molds have a vent at the bottom… a small channel the lets the water escape below the main mold, which is then easily broken away.

If you use a cooler, you’ll need to carefully time the freezing so the bottom doesn’t freeze.

I use trays such as this two sphere one from glacio (when I got it it was around $30) to make clear ice.

Yes it takes a large amount of freezer space due to the need for the directional freezing but it does the job. I use filtered water, and store the cubes/spheres in a freezer bag. Note that these types of trays are not meant to be left in the freezer, as noted by @ScottinPollock you take them out after about 24 hours or else it becomes too difficult to separate the clear ice from the bottom frozen water.



So, I went to a wedding reception this past Saturday at what has historically been Seattle’s toniest restaurant. The bartender was a maestro, and was using perfectly clear large, single cubes.

I asked him i they were made in house, and he said no, they just buy them premade.

Was it Canlis? Just curious.

Bingo! My room friend rented out the upstairs/atrium for drinks and heavy hors d’ouvres… Fabulous venue.

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It’s on my list, and I hear it’s now very good again!

Everything offered was excellent and plentiful. Best oysters I’d had in years, duck meatballs were outstanding, and of course the Canlis salad. Squadrons of servers.

Such a beautiful building and view.

What a perfect place to hold a memorable event. Happy to hear they’re on their game, and you enjoyed your evening! And thanks for the intel.

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Bessarabsky Market, Kyiv. Ukraine
Credit: Juan Antonio Segal, Flickr