4 Easy and Cheap Homemade Popsicle Ideas

Homemade Popsicles in plastic molds. (Photo: bombchel/Flickr) Well friends, the time has come once again. Grab a paper towel ... nay, a baby wipe or two, because it’s about to get sticky. That’s right -- it’s popsicle season! But before you all run out to your local market and buy that high-fructose corn syrup treat, or spend big bucks on a tiny box of frozen organic sugar, bear this in mind: you, yes YOU, can make your own popsicles this summer in your very own kitchen (you're running the freezer anyway, so it won't cost you more on your electrical bill)!

Popsicle making is not just a soccer mom’s pastime; it is actually an art. There are many different ways to make your own popsicles using a variety of ingredients. Here I present to you a smattering of the possibilities in popsicle cuisine.

1. The Basic Popsicle
This is what I used to do as a kid. I would take a Dixie cup and fill it with my favorite juice. Then I'd place a popsicle stick in the middle and tape it to either side of the cup. Finally, I would stick it in the freezer. I have distinct memories of these being the yummiest popsicles ever.

Dixie cups work nicely, but it may behoove you to purchase a Popsicle mold. The options.are endless, from cheap plastic molds to the fancy silicone ones from high end kitchen stores. In my experience it doesn’t really matter what kind you buy.

2. The Fruit Popsicle
Once you have a mold, start experimenting with different combinations of fresh fruit blends. Summer fruit like berries and peaches make delicious popsicles - just blend them up and put them in your mold to freeze. Some great fruit combos I have made are mango and orange juice, banana and strawberry, and raspberry and peach. If the blended fruit is too thick to pour into a mold, add some orange juice or water to get it to the right consistency.

3. The Pudding Popsicle
Really, most desserts taste great when they are frozen. Pudding, it turns out, is no different. Make pudding according to the directions on the packet, pour into a dixie cup, add a Popsicle stick and put it in the freezer. A more aesthetic version of this dessert involves adding food coloring (and sprinkles!) and layering to make a rainbow Popsicle!

4. The Yogurt Popsicle
Another fun popsicle variation is the yogurt pop -- a super healthy alternative to the store bought ice cream bars. As I have learned, frozen yogurt (the kind you buy) is really not yogurt, frozen. However, freezing yogurt is still really delicious, and much healthier when you buy the kind without corn syrup or artificial flavors. Blend in some berries and pour the mixture into your mold to create the perfect summer snack!

There really is so much you can do with homemade popsicles. Experiment with colors, shapes and ingredients to fit all your summer festivities!

Leah Batkin writes about Boston-area roofing, home and lifestyle issues for Networx.

Updated August 6, 2018.

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