15 Ways To Use Ice Cube Trays

A list of creative ways to use ice cube trays to go above and beyond frozen water.

Hi Friends-

Just popping in with a little inspiration for you. If you follow my food prep series, you may have noticed that I often freeze yogurt + mix-ins to make one of my favorite snacks- froyo bites. The other week I was making a batch and I started thinking about my ice cube trays and about other ways I could use them.

Get creative and think outside the cube. Here are 15 ways to use ice cube trays in the kitchen to make life easier, store extra food, portion ingredients and more.

After a short brainstorming session, I came up with 15 Ways To Use Ice Cube Trays so I thought I’d share them with you guys!

  1. Coffee cubes – Freeze your leftover coffee and use in your iced coffees to keep them from getting watered-down, or add to smoothies!
  2. Smoothie cubes – Blend spinach or other greens with water until smooth. Freeze in trays and add to blender when making smoothies. You can also mash up ripe bananas and freeze into cubes for an easy smoothie addition.
  3. Yogurt bites – Add your favorite mix-ins to yogurt and freeze into cubes for a bite-sized snack. Find my favorite combo here: Frozen Yogurt Trailmix Bars/Bites.
  4. Fruit cubes – Add fresh fruit and water to ice cube trays to add some color to your ice water.
  5. Pesto– Make a batch of pesto, spoon into trays and freeze. Store in the freezer and use in recipes when called for or to add some extra flavor to sauces, etc.
  6. Tomato paste– recipes almost never call for the whole can of tomato paste. Freeze the extra in cubes to use in future recipes.
  7. Lemon/lime juice– Freeze the juice from fresh lemons and limes to add to blended frozen drinks or add to the pan when cooking dishes for some extra flavor!
  8. Cookie dough – Make a batch of cookie dough and freeze in cubes. When the cookie craving strikes, bake as many as you’d like.
  9. Baby food – Make your own baby food purees and stock the freezer with cubes. Simply defrost when needed.
  10. Chocolate cubes– Freeze melted chocolate in ice cube trays to make chocolate cubes. Add to regular milk or iced coffee for a little treat!
  11. Toddler food– Place a variety of different bite-sized options in an ice cube tray for toddler meals or snacks and let them pick what they want to eat!
  12. Jewelry organizer– Store your earrings, rings and other jewelry in ice cube trays to avoid a messy jewelry drawer.
  13. Garbage disposal cleaner- Freeze vinegar and lemon pieces in ice cube trays. Every few weeks, toss a couple down the garbage disposal to freshen things up.
  14. Paint tray – Pour different paint colors into ice cube trays and let the kiddos go to town!
  15. Seedling Tray– Drill a drainage hole in the bottom of each cube, fill with dirt and plant seeds for the garden so they can start growing indoors.

Get creative and think outside the cube. Here are 15 ways to use ice cube trays in the kitchen to make life easier, store extra food, portion ingredients and more.

Obviously these aren’t the only ways to use them. This list is just to get the wheels turning for you! Once you start thinking about it, I bet you’ll come up with even more fun ways to use them! I’ve also use them to make frozen treats for my dogs, freeze leftover wine for cooking, etc! The possibilities are endless! For the food-related ones, I’d recommend removing from the ice cube trays after they’re frozen and storing in a tupperware container or ziploc bag to avoid freezer burn!

Get creative and think outside the cube. Here are 15 ways to use ice cube trays in the kitchen to make life easier, store extra food, portion ingredients and more.

Let’s chat:

What’s your favorite way to use ice cube trays?

Leave your ideas below to inspire others!


About Lindsay

Lindsay Livingston is a Registered Dietitian and new mom from Columbus, Ohio. On her blog, she shares simple, healthy recipes, nutrition tips, workouts and snapshots of her life. Follow her on Twitter @LeanGrnBeanBlog and Instagram @TheLeanGreenBean and be sure to subscribe via RSS or email so you never miss a post!


  1. This is brilliant.
    Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted..SF 1st Half Marathon Recap

  2. Mind bloody blown.

    Favourite way to use ice cube trays……to make ice? 😉
    Arman @ thebigmansworld recently posted..Moving Meals

  3. Wow! I would never have thought of half of these, tomato paste! I tried coffee cubes but I always just get in a big mess and last time spilt coffee all over our freezer. Now whenever I get anything out it has sticky coffee on it! Not ice cube trays, but I used my cupcake trays to organise all the bits and pieces when my girls came round to decorate gingerbread houses at Christmas!
    Stephanie recently posted..Lavender and Raspberry Shortbread

  4. So many fab ideas! Thanks for sharing – will definitely be using some of these tips!
    Jen @ Chase the Red Grape recently posted..Birthday Weekend Recap!

  5. I was told since I want to try and make my own baby food that ice cube trays are the BEST for making big batches of food – prep, freeze, then take out just what you need the morning before feeding the kiddos :) Thanks for all these other ideas!
    Sarah@creatingbettertomorrow recently posted..Words from Grandma

  6. Wait…there’s never “leftover” coffee!!! These are great ideas! With both my girls I used the trays to make their baby food. It was a great way to get them a serving of veggies…then I would just pop out a few cubes and warm them up!

  7. seriously genius! we don’t even use ice cube trays right now as breastmilk has taken over my freezer lol but once it comes to time to make baby food, i’ll definitely portion it in ice cube trays!
    Linz @ Itz Linz recently posted..Healthy Strawberry Cheesecake Protein Milkshake

  8. I like that cookie dough idea. I know you can buy the breakables in the grocery but it would be fabulous to make your own and freeze them.
    Hollie recently posted..Personal Beauty.

  9. (((TOSSES CUBE’FETTI!!)))
    love these as this is something we do here all the time, too.
    Carla recently posted..Musings on enjoying the process.

  10. I use mine for baby food!! Love it!
    Brittany @ Delights and Delectables recently posted..WIAW: When Summer Loses It’s Heat

  11. love using mine for herbs too! works like a charm
    lindsay recently posted..The Breakfast Club- Grain Free Mixed Nut Muffins

  12. Love it!! I use it for baby food, but I was thinking of freezing some of Ethan’s yogurt. Does yogurt defrost well, or do you enjoy it frozen?
    Tiff recently posted..Just the Two of Us

  13. Great ideas! I will be freezing pesto and tomato sauce for sure!
    Diane Boyd recently posted..Figgy Cheesy Flatbread

  14. Cute! I’ve been freezing almond milk to toss into smoothies instead of ice cubes — adds to the creaminess without diluting the flavour 😀
    Amanda @ .running with spoons. recently posted... epic food survey pt2 .

  15. I made homemade vegetable and beef stock and freeze it in ice cube trays. I also use them for many of what you have suggested above and measured a standard ice cube tray. 2 cubes = 1/4 cup, 4 cubes = 1/2 cup, 6 cubes = 3/4 cup, and 8 cubes = 1 cup. I have those measurements as a pinnable graphic here: http://wp.me/p46jfk-PG
    Kristina @ Cucina Kristina recently posted..Pickled Sugar Snap Peas

  16. I never think to use ice cube trays for anything other than water. Actually don’t even have trays any longer. But a friend of mine uses them to freeze almond milk for smoothies and I keep thinking I need to give that a shot. Thanks for this list!

  17. You are a kitchen tip genius — love this
    Jennifer F recently posted..Did That Cheesecake Make My Butt Look Big? Healthy Dessert Recipes & Pole Dancing

  18. Definitely some great ideas! I’ll remember the one about tomato paste, for sure…I always end up throwing away half-empty cans of the stuff.
    Sam @ Better With Sprinkles recently posted..WIAW: Road Food.

  19. Great ideas! I’ve been wanting to do some of those frozen fruit cubes!
    Alysia @ Slim Sanity recently posted..Basil Spread and Crunch Bars

  20. Great list, Lindsay! I just started freezing coffee cubes recently and it has been awesome for iced coffee! A friend of mine freezes her fresh herbs towards the end of the season, too.
    Carly @ Fine Fit Day recently posted..PRO Compression Marathon Socks Review – #KeepItTight (plus a 40% discount for YOU!)

  21. Those are some mighty good tips!

  22. I use a lot of these ideas! My favorite is not wasting tomato paste anymore!
    jill conyers recently posted..Fitmark Instagram Challenge and 7 Tips for Healthy Meals on the Go

  23. lots of great ideas! I freeze raspberries sometimes and add them to seltzer
    Deborah @ Confessions of a Mother Runner recently posted..Pro Compression socks review & Giveaway

  24. These are such great ideas!! Sharing! Thanks girly!
    Erin @ Her Heartland Soul recently posted..Bruschetta Cheese Bites with Flackers

  25. Such awesome ideas!
    Alison @ Daily Moves and Grooves recently posted..WIAW: Vacation Day in the Life

  26. Amazing! Tomorrow is the 31st and I AM SO EXCITED!!!
    Kateri Von Steal recently posted..Wednesday Camel Confessions!

  27. Awesome post! Definitely will pin this one for later. I need to buy some ice cube trays!
    Emily @ Zen & Spice recently posted..DIY Wooden Food Photography Boards

  28. Such a great post, smart ideas girlie!
    Kat recently posted..Enjoying the Freshness of Summer: Recipes

  29. Pesto and baby food! I have heard about the coffee one but I don’t drink much iced coffee so I typically forget about it. Great post idea Linds!
    Melanie @ Nutritious Eats recently posted..Hawaii Vacation Food Recap

  30. Yahaaay!
    I’ve been wanting to use out trays for reals! Thanks for the inpsiration, next week should be fuhun!
    Kirtley Freckleton @ The Gist of Fit recently posted..When social pressures ‘force’ you to eat junk

  31. Oh my goodness I’ve never thought of #4, #15, #13…and great reminder of all the rest – especially pesto, as basil is coming out my ears!

  32. So I don’t own any ice cube trays, but I have been meaning to get some! I love the tomato paste and fruit cubes idea!
    Lisa @ Healthy Nibbles & Bits recently posted..Spicy Vegan Chili

  33. This is awesome! I totally can’t wait to try the tomato paste version! I NEVER use a whole can of it at one time.
    Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl recently posted..Nearly Wordless WIAW: July 30, 2014 (Recent Eats)

  34. LOVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If there is any left over coffee & that is a big IF, ice cubes for future coffee! :)
    Jody – Fit at 56 recently posted..Gratitude Monday, Tolerance and Sharing Instagram Love

  35. These are all FABULOUS ideas! I have used some before. I def need to get some more trays and have a freezing session! Never thought about freezing tomato paste before.
    I have also made little smoothie pops for the kids I babysit. Stick a Popsicle stick in each tray cube and freeze! Perfect for little ones who can’t eat big Popsicles with out them melting all over! :)
    Thanks for posting these!
    Esther recently posted..Wordless Wednesday

  36. This is great! Awesome post and awesome ideas. Can’t wait to try the pesto!!
    Kristi recently posted..My top 5 natural cold remedies + Glow Potion recipe

  37. I’ve been doing coffee cubes for YEARS! And I would do tomato paste cubes… BUT…. When one of those cans open, I ALWAYS FINISH IT OFF WITH A SPOON 😉
    GiGi Eats recently posted..Sharing The SamePlate

  38. What great ideas! I do coffee fairly regularly, but like the idea of the mix ins for smoothies too!
    Stephanie @ Long Distance Baking recently posted..Peach Muffins

  39. I cannot believe this never occurred to me before. This is a goldmine of a find!!! I must now rush out and buy out as many ice cube trays as I can find, I’m on a serious mission. There’s SO much potential in this! Great things come in small packages after all!

  40. Love! Just pinned and shared on FB!

  41. UM girl, you are brilliant. Seriously… cookie dough? That is genius! I love all these ideas, now I actually need to get my butt in gear AND TRY SOME!
    Cassie recently posted..How to Survive Long Flights [and a Giveaway!]

  42. Left over coffee? What’s that? hehe… Love your ideas.. pinning!
    Caroline recently posted..#100SummerMiles + BETA! {My Training Diary 8.14}


  1. […] 15 Ways To Use Ice Cube Trays by Lindsay – We actually don’t even have ice cube trays at our house, but I loved these ideas. My favorite might be yogurt bites and fruit cubes. I honestly never really thought of using ice cube trays in this many ways. I have heard of people freezing coffee for their iced coffee drinks. […]

  2. […] 3. 15 Ways to Use Ice Cube Trays: Here at hint, we love freezing fresh fruit in ice cube trays for a fun addition to our hint. When we found these other super creative ways to use an ice cube tray, we were pleasantly surprised. (via The Lean Green Bean). […]

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  3. […] 15 Ways to Use Ice Cube Trays via The Lean Green Bean. Some creative ideas to use ice cube trays for more than just making ice! […]

  4. […] 15 Ways To Use Ice Cube Trays by Lindsay at The Lean Green Bean […]

  5. […] With permission from The Lean Green Bean […]

  6. […] to talk about cookies. But then again, really what day isn’t?! Ever since I mentioned in my 15 Creative Ways To Use Ice Cube Trays post that you could freeze cookie dough, I’ve been thinking about how I need to stock my […]

  7. […] 15 Ways To Use Ice Cube Trays<—Creative! Stock Your Kitchen: Refrigerator Edition<—love this series… Stock Your Kitchen: Pantry Staples<—…will be great when we move into our house. The Cookie Dough Protein Shake<—yummy! Banana Bread Cookie Sandwiches with Cream Cheese Greek Yogurt Frosting<—OMG! Elvis Ice Cream<—so much yuminess! Healthier Puppy Chow<—I love puppy chow! Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Stuffed Cupcakes<—nom nom nom nom! […]

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  8. […] 15 Creative Ways To Use Ice Cube Trays […]

  9. […] 3. 15 Ways to Use Ice Cube Trays: Here at hint, we love freezing fresh fruit in ice cube trays for a fun addition to our hint. When we found these other super creative ways to use an ice cube tray, we were pleasantly surprised. (via The Lean Green Bean). […]

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