The weather during the spring and summer is simply too nice to keep parties inside. A beach party with all your friends and family is an exciting idea but can take some serious planning. That’s why we’ve put together a quick guide to planning and packing an ice cream cone party on the beach!
We’ve got you covered with tips for keeping your ice cream frozen, what toppings to bring, how to package them, ideas for a quick clean-up, and a full list of items for the party. Do you have your beach ball and sunscreen ready?
How Much Ice Cream Do You Need?
Joy Cones are the obvious choice for any ice cream cone party, but first, you’ll need to pick a cone style and decide which flavor of ice cream will be scooped into your cones. Next, you’ll need to determine how much ice cream to purchase.
How many people are you planning to invite? How many scoops do you want to put on each cone? How many cones will you provide each person? Once you know the answers to these questions, add them the numbers up and you will know how much ice cream to buy.
One scoop of ice cream equals about half a measuring cup. So, to guide your ice cream purchase:
- One Pint = Four scoops of ice cream
- One Quart = Eight scoops of ice cream
- One Gallon = 32 scoops of ice cream
With the decision made about what kind and how much ice cream you need, start thinking about toppings. It’s a party, right?
How to Pack Toppings
Packing toppings to take to the beach is easier than you think. Start by buying some two-ounce plastic to-go containers with lids. What kind of toppings are your favorite? If you’re feeling stumped, we’ve got a few ideas. Why not try:
- Fruit – Cherries, blueberries, raspberries, etc.
- Nuts – Chopped almonds, pecans, peanuts, etc.
- Trail mix
- Crushed up cookies
- Mini chocolate chips or other small baking bits
- Mini candies
When packed in the individually sized, throw-away containers, serving toppings and clean-up are a breeze.
But wait, what about chocolate syrup? Do you want to serve chocolate syrup, caramel, peanut butter, or some other type of liquid topping? Simply pack the toppings in clear squeeze bottles and label with a sticker.
If you dream of whipped cream and wouldn’t have an ice cream cone party without it, buy the canned version. You won’t need any utensils to serve it and when it’s empty, you can toss it in the trash.
Speaking of trash, any party comes with a little trash, but you can minimize your effort by using our plan.
First, bring a trash bag and make sure it has a drawstring. You can use the string to secure it to your umbrella or a fence, and then seal up the bag when you’re finished so nothing blows away. The drawstring makes a comfortable handle for carrying the trash away from the beach to the nearest trash receptacle.
Next, minimize what you’re packing to take to the beach. Don’t overpack and encourage your guests to help you finish off all the party supplies before you leave. Once the boxes of cones are empty, they’ll go straight in the trash bag. Since you’re using cones, your guests won’t need utensils, which saves on packing space and trash.
Pack your individually-sized topping cups in a gallon-sized Ziploc bag. Once the toppings are gone and the cups are in the trash bag, you can use the Ziploc bag to keep your ice cream scoop from dripping on your beach bags or towels.
If you pack everything in a soft-sided, reusable shopping bag, you can fold it up and stick it in your beach bag when the party is over.
What to Pack
To make your ice cream cone beach party as simple to plan as possible, we’ve created a handing packing list. Make sure to pack:
- Enough ice cream for the number of guests you’re serving
- Ice cream scoop
- Enough Joy Cones for your guests–cake cups, waffle cones, or sugar cones.
- Prepacked toppings packed in a gallon-sized Ziploc bag (to be reused later for the ice cream scoop)
- Chocolate sauce or other sauces in squeeze bottles
- Canned whip cream
- Wet wipes for easy clean-up
- Trash bag with drawstring
- Water bottles (optional)
Wondering how to keep your ice cream frozen while you’re hanging out on the beach?
Using Dry Ice to Keep Ice Cream Frozen
When you’re looking for a way to keep ice cream frozen solid while you’re traveling to the beach and having fun in the sun, look no further than dry ice. Packing a cooler with dry ice–the solid form of carbon dioxide which is colder than regular ice–will keep your ice cream in top shape for your party.
First, you should always wear gloves when you’re handling dry ice directly. Contact with bare skin can cause burn-like injuries from the severity of the cold. Make sure you have thick leather gloves or something similar before you handle dry ice. For this reason, you should never taste, lick, or swallow dry ice.
Choose a dry ice-approved cooler or a thick Styrofoam one. Usually, a local grocery store can sell you dry ice, but you should check in advance to ensure they have it. You’ll want to wait to purchase the dry ice until you are ready to leave for the beach to ensure it will last as long as needed.
Once you’ve purchased the dry ice, wrap it in newspaper and tape it together to keep the air from getting to it and causing it to sublimate too fast. Load your ice cream tubs into the cooler closest to the dry ice. If you want to chill water bottles or other drinks, put them on top of the ice cream–as the items closest to the dry ice will freeze very quickly.
Before you take off down the road with your cooler full of dry ice and ice cream, make sure your roll at least one window down slightly. As the dry ice warms up, carbon dioxide is released as a gas and can make you ill if you’re in an unventilated area.
Additionally, as the dry ice warms, gas requires more space than solids. If you’re cooler is airtight, it could cause pressure to build to dangerous levels. If you’re using a Styrofoam cooler, it will allow enough gas to escape. However, if you’re using an airtight cooler, remember to vent the drain a little to allow for the gas to escape.
Dead air space inside your cooler will make the dry ice sublimate quickly, so fill empty space with newspaper. The newspaper will provide enough insulation to keep the dry ice from disappearing prematurely.
Bring Joy Home
Planning a fun gathering for your friends and family doesn’t have to be a burden. When you choose to Bring Joy Home from the grocery store, everyone wins. Not ready for the beach just yet? Stop by our Pinterest page and discover other ways to use ice cream cones and Bring Joy Home.