Make an Ice Ring, Ice Cups, or Ice Shards to Keep Punch Cool

Impress your guests with an ice ring for punch that doubles as a pretty centerpiece by following this guide.

A big punch bowl is the ultimate drink idea for birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays. It's delicious and serves a lot of people, but it can be challenging to keep punch cold for several hours. Adding too much ice or continuing to drop in cubes will dilute the flavors of your homemade punch. The best way to keep your beverage cold throughout a party? An ice ring made with flavorful ingredients, such as a reserved portion of the punch recipe. Ice rings filled with fresh fruits, herbs, and edible flowers add a pretty touch to your drink display.

Follow our tips to make an ice ring at home to keep your punch bowl cool for hours. And if you don't have the tools (or the time) to make a large ice ring, we'll show you how to make other flavorful ice molds from items already in your kitchen.

How to Make an Ice Ring

pouring water in mold with fruit
Jason Donnelly

For your mold, you can use a 10-inch bundt pan or a fluted cake pan ($13, Walmart). Silicone pans work especially well and make unmolding easier.

Make sure the ice ring will fit into your punch bowl. To ensure the ice ring doesn't dilute the punch as it melts, use extra punch or other flavorful liquids instead of water for the ice ring.

  1. Place 2-3 cups sliced fruit, fresh berries, citrus peel curls, edible flowers, or fresh herbs in your pan.
  2. Pour water, club soda, lemon-lime carbonated beverage, or desired punch recipe around fruits. (Leave some fruit sticking out.)
  3. Freeze several hours or until firm.
  4. To remove ice ring from the pan, dip bottom of pan in warm water for a few seconds. Then, invert over a large plate, tapping on bottom of pan to release the ring (if using a metal pan) or gently peeling off the mold (if using a silicone mold).
  5. Place in punch bowl.

How to Make Ice Cups

punch with small fruit filled ice rings
Andy Lyons

Smaller ice cups can make scooping punch out of the bowl easier. To create the ice cups:

  1. Place silicone cupcake molds ($18, Amazon) on a baking sheet. Place whole or sliced fruit, fresh herbs, or edible flowers in cups.
  2. Pour water, club soda, lemon-lime carbonated beverage, or additional punch around fruit to fill cups. (Leave some fruit sticking out.)
  3. Freeze several hours or until firm.
  4. To unmold, peel molds off of ice cups. Transfer desired number of ice cups to the punch bowl.
  5. Place any remaining ice cups in a large resealable bag; seal. Store in the freezer until ready to use.

How to Make Ice Shards

pouring club soda onto frozen fruit
Scott Little

Ice shards work great in individual glasses if you're forgoing the punch bowl in favor of a pitcher or if you want to add a pretty garnish to individual party drinks.

To make ice shards:

  1. In a 15x10-inch baking pan ($8, Walmart), place 2-3 cups whole or sliced fruit, citrus peel curls, edible flowers, or fresh herbs.
  2. Add enough water, club soda, or other beverage to surround fruit, but not cover it.
  3. Freeze several hours or until firm.
  4. Dip the pan bottom in warm water to loosen the ice to unmold. Invert over a cutting board. Using a mallet ($17, Target), break ice into small shards. Place in glasses with punch.

Now that you know how to beautify your punch bowl with an ice ring (or ice cups or shards) find a new punch recipe to show off that frozen ring. The ice molds with fruit inside will be the perfect addition to summer drinks and special occasions. Keep our spooky Halloween punch in mind for the drink table when October rolls around.

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