The Perfect Temperature to Store Ice Cream

Frozen desserts, like ice cream, are a favorite treat that generates substantial revenue for ice cream shops and retail stores all year round. People are drawn to the creamy and rich taste of ice cream. However, to preserve its flavor and texture, it is crucial to store ice cream correctly. In this article, we will explore the ideal temperature for storing this beloved frozen treat.

What is the Optimal Ice Cream Storage Temperature?

The guidelines for storing ice cream depend on whether you plan to store it for a short while or a more extended period.

For Long-Term Storage

To maintain the quality of ice cream over an extended period, ensure that it remains below zero degrees. The ideal storage temperature ranges from -10°F to -20°F. Frozen treats should never go above the freezing point and should always feel firm to the touch.

For Scooping and Serving

For easy scooping and serving, set the temperature of your ice cream storage system between 6°F and 10°F. However, be cautious not to keep it at this temperature for an extended time as it may start to melt, leading to changes in texture and taste.

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Why Does Temperature Matter?

Maintaining ice cream within the proper temperature range is crucial for a few reasons. Ice and fat, the two primary components of ice cream, remain intact when stored at the right temperature. However, when the temperature rises, they begin to break down, adversely affecting the quality, texture, and taste. The temperature required for long-term storage differs from the temperature required for serving.

When ice cream is served at its ideal temperature, it provides the best scooping experience. Slightly warmer temperatures allow the ice cream to be scooped and served without melting.

The Importance of Proper Freezing Temperature

Maintaining the correct temperature is essential since improper storage could result in adverse changes to the flavor, texture, and taste of the ice cream. It helps preserve the balance between frozen and unfrozen components.

Can You Adjust the Freezer Temperature?

You can easily adjust the temperature of your freezer using the thermostat. The thermostat may take various forms, such as a dial, digital display, or numbered settings. Locate the thermostat and set the desired freezer temperature. To monitor the temperature accurately, consider using a freezer thermometer.

Tips to Keep Ice Cream in its Best Form

To savor ice cream in its perfect state, consider following these tips:

In the Store

  • When browsing ice cream shops with open-top freezer cases, choose ice cream and other frozen desserts below the freezer line.
  • Keep your ice cream separate from other groceries.
  • Ask for a freezer bag at the store to insulate frozen treats.
  • Save the ice cream parlor or the ice cream aisle in a supermarket for your last stop.
  • Check the temperature of the supermarket’s freezer case, which should not exceed 10°F.
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At Home

  • Place the ice cream container in the main part of your freezer, avoiding the freezer door.
  • Use plastic wrap to store any remaining ice cream overnight.
  • Prevent consistent thawing and re-freezing, as it can cause small ice crystals to form lumps.

Recommended Freezers for Ice Cream Storage

If you’re looking for the ideal freezer for storing ice cream, consider these options:

Ice Cream Display Freezers

These freezers allow customers to view different flavors from the backside. They are designed to provide optimal visibility and freshness, making them perfect for marketing your ice cream business.

Cabinet Display Freezers

Cabinet display freezers provide proper storage and easy visibility to monitor your ice cream products effectively.

Reach-In Freezers

These convenient and movable freezer units offer excellent storage capacity for ice cream and can be positioned anywhere you desire.


Improper storage can lead to ice crystals and a deteriorated texture in your ice cream. It is crucial to establish a proper storage pattern that suits your needs. With the tips provided in this article, you should be able to store your ice cream properly without compromising its taste.


1. Can a Freezer be Too Cold for Ice Cream?

No, a freezer that is “too cold” will not affect your enjoyment of ice cream. The recommended freezing temperature for ice cream is 0°F or colder. You can verify the proper temperature range by checking the freezer case in your local grocery store.

2. What is the Maximum Legal Temperature for Storing Ice Cream?

There is no set legal temperature for storing ice cream, but there is an ideal temperature range that you should not exceed. For example, a supermarket’s freezer case should not exceed 10°F when storing ice cream.

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3. Will Ice Cream Stay Frozen at 20 Degrees?

If stored at 20 degrees, ice cream will remain frozen but not for an extended period. For long-term storage, the perfect temperature range is approximately -10°F to -20°F.

4. Will Ice Cream Melt at 32 Degrees?

The freezing point of ice cream is around 32 degrees. Therefore, if exposed to temperatures above 32°F, ice cream will melt and lose its firmness. Handle ice cream with care, as it will become soft if stored at the wrong temperature.

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