Using smoked ice is a great way to add a smoky twist to a cocktail. Read on to learn everything you need to know about making smoked ice cubes. They’re a great addition to any home bar.
Making Smoked Ice
We’ve been making smoked ice since we got our Traeger in 2017. It’s been on my list to write about since then. We love using the smoked ice cubes in cocktails or even just for a glass of whiskey.
If you like experimenting with different cocktails or are a whiskey or bourbon drinker and have a smoker, I highly recommend trying this simple technique.
What is Smoked Ice
Water takes on a smoky flavor when it is “cooked” on a smoker on a low enough temperature that it doesn’t boil off. The water will take on the flavor of the smoke.
Smoked ice is ice that has been made with water that has been infused with smoke flavor.
Tools Needed to Make Smoked Ice
You’ll need a few kitchen tools to prepare this recipe. Here’s what I recommend having on hand before beginning the smoking process:
- Traeger, Pellet Grill, or Other Smoker – what you’ll use to infuse smoke flavor into the water.
- Pellets or Wood Chips – use whatever type of wood your particular smoker instruction manual recommends.
- Foil Pan or Roasting Pan – choose something heat safe that you can place directly on grill grates.
- Large Glass Measuring Cup – helpful for pouring the water into the pan.
- Ice Cube Molds – to freeze the smoked water in. We like to use a large ice cube tray when making ice cubes for whiskey. Ours makes 2 inch cubes.
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What is in Smoked Ice?
Just water! If you have extra ice, you can always use ice. It will melt as the smoker heats up.
For the complete ingredient list and detailed instructions to make your own smoky ice cubes, scroll to the bottom of this post for the FREE printable recipe card.
How to Make Smoked Ice Cubes
The process is really straightforward, but here’s a quick overview of the recipe:
- Open the Traeger lid and place a pan directly on the grates. Fill the pan with water.
- Power the Traeger on, turning the setting to “smoke.”
- If not using a Traeger, power on your smoker according to manufacturer instructions.
- Close the lid and let the water smoke for 1 hour, stirring halfway through.
- After smoking, cool completely before transferring the water to ice cube trays; then freeze.
The above is simply a quick summary of this recipe for smoky ice. Check out the full recipe in the free printable recipe card at the bottom of this post for all the detailed instructions.
Tips for Making Smoked Ice Cubes
- Use a shallow, larger pan that allows more surface area, rather than a deep pan or pot.
- Stir the water after 30 minutes to circulate it.
- Let water cool completely in smoker before removing the pan so you don’t burn your self when removing it from the smoker.
- Strain the water with fine mesh strainer and/or with cheesecloth to remove any smoke particles or debris that landed in the water.
- Don’t smoke other foods at the same time as the ice could take on flavor of whatever food you’re cooking.
- Try different wood varieties to experiment with slightly different flavors in your ice cubes.
Smoked Ice FAQs
Got questions about how to make this smoked cocktail ice? Here are the answers to a few commonly asked questions. Feel free to leave any other questions in the comments on this post and I’ll respond with answers.
Why doesn’t the water boil off?
Water boils at 212 deg F. As long as you set your smoker in the 140 – 180 degree F range, you’ll have very little evaporation when smoking the water for your ice cubes.
Can I make smoked ice without a smoker?
Yes! Here are a couple of different methods you can experiment with if you don’t have a full sized smoker.
Smoking Gun – place a bowl of water under a glass dome meant for use with a smoking gun. If you don’t have a dome, place tube a bowl of water inside a zip top plastic bag and insert the tube inside. You’ll need something to enclose the bowl of water to keep the smoke in.
Smoker Box – can be used with a gas grill or charcoal grill. I haven’t personally tested this method, and typically you don’t get as much smoke from a smoker box, but you can certainly try.
Can I use smoked water for other things besides ice cubes?
Yes, you can use smoked water to make smoked simple syrup which would add extra smoke flavor to a smoked cocktail.
What wood/pellet type should I use?
It really depends on your personal preferences, so it is important to experiment to find out what you like best. We typically have apple, oak, or a blend on hand.
- Apple – mild and sweet flavor.
- Pecan – rich, sweet, nutty flavor.
- Oak – medium flavor, not overpowering, quintessential smoking wood.
- Hickory – mellow smoky flavor, not over powering, savory, hearty, one of the most versatile.
What cocktails taste good with smoked ice?
Smoked ice makes great cocktail ice! Looking for some fun ways to use your smoked ice? Try these ideas:
- Tequila Old Fashioned
- Traditional Old Fashioned
- Bloody Mary
- Classic Whiskey Sour
- Bourbon Apple Cider
Try Making Smoked Ice at Home!
Next time you’re looking for a way to take your cocktails to the next level, give this smoked ice recipe a try!
Did you love the smoky flavor the ice adds to your favorite drinks? Leave a comment below and give it a review for others to see what you thought of this simple tutorial.
On Instagram? Share your photo and tag me with @goodlifeeats and #goodlifeeatsrecipes. I’d love to see a photo of your smoked ice cocktail!
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- 4 cups Water
- Open the Traeger lid and place a heat safe pan (such as a metal or foil pan) in the center of the smoker directly on the grates.
- Fill the pan with water.
- Turn the Traeger on, selecting the "smoke" setting. Let the smoker run for approximately 5 minutes with the lid open, until smoke starts pouring out of the grill.
- Then, close the lid and let the water smoke for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, open the lid and quickly stir the water. Close the lid and smoke for an additional 30 minutes.
- After the full hour, open the lid, turn the Traeger to the "shut down" setting.
- Let the water sit on the grill grates and cool.
- Once the water has cooled completely, transfer it to ice cube trays and freeze until solid.
If not using a Traeger, power on your smoker according to manufacturer instructions.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 0Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 5mgCarbohydrates: 0gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g
GoodLifeEats.com offers recipe nutritional information as a courtesy. This provided information is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although GoodLifeEats.com makes every effort to provide accurate information, these figures are only estimates.