How A Knife Can Make Scooping Ice Cream Easier

Getting a satisfying scoop of ice cream while it's still freezer-fresh hard can be challenging. If you don't have an ice cream scoop, the task becomes nearly impossible because your spoon will just bend backward when you try to remove the frozen treat. Even if you use a really great ice cream scoop, it can still be difficult to break through the solid ice cream and you risk straining your wrist because the task requires so much effort. 

There are lots of options for how to get to your ice cream quicker, but they aren't always as effective as you'd hope. You could run the entire package under warm water (if it's coated to be waterproof) or, if your ice cream is in a microwave-safe container, you could heat it to speed up thawing. It's true these methods will all make your scooping easier, but they also affect the integrity of the ice cream itself making it soft and too liquidy on the outside and still way too hard in the middle. 

The better way to get to your ice cream is to use a warm knife to make scooping easier. Cutting a pattern into the top of your ice cream with a gently warmed knife can make even the hardest batch of the frozen treat much more scoop-friendly. This is because the warmed knife penetrates the ice cream and begins to thaw it (without melting it), loosening it up for your ice cream scoop or spoon.

How to use a knife to help scoop ice cream

The important thing to remember before attempting this hack (or any hack with a knife) is to use a sharp knife. While it sounds counterintuitive, a sharp knife is safer because it requires less force to use. The more force you need to apply, the greater the chance the knife could skitter off to the side (instead of slicing in), which could lead to a painful accident.

To use this ice cream scooping hack, start by running the blade of your sharp knife under the hottest water your sink can produce. Once the blade is warm, create a checkerboard pattern on the top of your ice cream, reheating your knife as needed, so that you're essentially creating little squares of ice cream. The cuts only need to go about an inch deep and the squares should be about an inch wide. Next, run your ice cream scoop or spoon under hot water and marvel as it gently glides through what is essentially perforated ice cream, dishing up the perfect scoop. It's as simple as that!