Appalachia Appalachian Food

How To Make Snow Cream

Yesterday brought cold temps and about 2 inches of snow to the Blind Pig abode. I posted about snow cream 2 years ago after a really big snow for us-8 inches. I decided to bring the snow cream out of the Blind Pig archives since folks who usually never see snow got some of the white stuff yesterday.

How To Make Snow Cream


January 2011

My big snow turned out to be 8 inches. I’ve heard other areas of Cherokee County got as much as 10. Yesterday, Granny told Chatter she could make some snow cream. But, Granny said she wasn’t going to make any, cause she still had some left from the snow at Christmas and didn’t want it to waste.

I hadn’t made snow cream in ages-so I decided if it did snow I’d make some.

Steve and Tipper 1972


Steve and Tipper 1972

The first time I remember eating snow cream was with Pap’s Mother, Marie. She babysit me for Granny so I spent lots of time with her-but she died suddenly of a heart attack when I was in 5th grade so my memories about her are sparse.

As I think back to my snow cream memory-I wonder where the other kids were-maybe they had went out to play without me. Mamaw took me by the hand and led me around the side of the house. While we walked carefully through the snow she told me it was important to remember the first snow of the year was poison and I wasn’t to ever eat it. I held tightly to her as we looked for good clean snow to fill our bowl with. Once our bowl was full, we went back to her tiny kitchen, and she let me sit in the special chair to watch her make snow cream. The chair was like a swivel office chair-except it was covered in plastic with a bright yellow floral pattern on it. All us kids wanted to sit in that chair-cause it turned round and round-fast like a merry go round. We ate the snow cream and I decided it was very good-and somehow even though I was very young I believe I knew staying with Mamaw when no one else was there was very good too.

Making snow cream


As I sent Chatter out for a bowl of clean snow yesterday, I remembered Jim Casada’s recipe for snow cream. I gave snow cream a google and was amazed at how many recipes there is for it. Some add sweetened condensed milk-some eggs-others all sorts of flavorings. You can even find videos of folks showing how to make snow cream on youtube.

how to make snowcream

We never had a recipe to go by, Granny would just add milk or cream, vanilla, and sugar to a bowl of clean snow till it looked and tasted right. Lots of times-it was us kids doing the mixing and adding and we ended up with a drink instead of a cream. But it was still tasty-especially after a day of sledding.

Snow cream is certainly a make do recipe. I like thinking about the smiles snow cream has brought to children through the years-and it’s kinda nice to know it’s still bringing smiles today.

If it snowed at your house-leave me a comment and tell me how much you got.


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  • Reply
    April 28, 2014 at 8:57 am

    Thank you for the comment! So glad you enjoyed the snowcream post.
    I hope you have a great week and I hope you drop back by the Blind Pig often!
    Blind Pig The Acorn
    Celebrating and Preserving the
    Culture of Appalachia
    On Saturday, April 26, 2014 9:18 PM, Typepad

  • Reply
    April 26, 2014 at 9:18 pm


  • Reply
    Deb Wright
    January 30, 2014 at 9:08 pm

    Hi All,
    Snow cream, oh, yes please!
    Tipper it is wonderful that you are keeping the old ways alive in your writing, song, and lifestyle. It must be a true blessing to have these memories embedded through the loving acts of family, like making snow cream.
    I spent my younger years living below the snow line, as jobs were easier to find for my parents and before they knew it, they were at retirement age. So, my first experience with snow cream was when I was in my 30’s, after my parents had moved up to the mountains where we loved to spend our extended weekends and vacations.
    My daughters were young, like in the picture of you and your brother. We were up visiting my folks when a series of storms came through. The kids were restless until my mother said we should make snow cream.
    I learned something that afternoon that could have been lost in a generation. Something my mother did as a child with her parents and grandparents that I missed because of relocation. How glad I was to have my children learn how to make snow cream. How glad I was to read your story about family and traditions. I will be sure to make snow cream next big snow and enjoy the memories as much as the taste.

  • Reply
    Patti Tappel
    January 29, 2014 at 10:57 pm

    The blacksmith made snow ice cream twice (so far) this winter for the grand kids. I think the real truth is he enjoyed it more than the kids. I believe it is a childhood thing with him!

  • Reply
    Roy Acuff
    January 29, 2014 at 8:39 pm

    Me thinks Speckled Snowater’s tall thin clear glass hath been previously visited by The Great Speckled Bird. I say, just slurp it up and call it free probiotics.

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    January 29, 2014 at 1:43 pm

    I like Snowcream too. I felt sorry for
    those Atlanta folks stuck in traffic
    jams all night, even school buses just
    loaded with children.
    My oldest daughter spent 2 hours with
    her two girls (in Raleigh) playing in
    the snow. They made Snowcream with the
    2″ of powdery stuff today for their
    dinner treat…Ken

  • Reply
    January 29, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    Snow Cream sounds like a delightful treat.
    All the concerns about the “hazards” in snow reminded me of a story from my daughter. My son-in-law’s extended rents a house in Maine each summer – this means people stepping over each others’ sleeping bags and piles of stuff, but a delightfully cozy and loving family time. One of the things they have always enjoyed is taking walks and on this particular day they were enjoying the sweetness of fresh wild blueberries alongside the path. Another walker came along with his Malmute and said, “You know this is where everyone walks their dogs . . . .”
    Nature is Beautiful, Nature is Bountiful, but “Buyer Beware” still holds true.

  • Reply
    January 29, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    I made snow cream last night–just snow, sugar, and Carnation cream mixed until it tasted right. I put the leftover in the freezer–so it wouldn’t waste, lol! Savannah tried to make it in Illinois last year and they couldn’t believe she would eat it–said it was dirty. Maybe it is, but some things are just worth the risk.

  • Reply
    Joe Penland,
    January 29, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    Had about 3 inches in my part of E . Tn. Not much moving in Monroe county this morning.

  • Reply
    January 29, 2014 at 11:14 am

    We seldom get snow anymore. Haven’t had good snow cream in many years but remember Mama making it with milk, sugar and vanilla.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    January 29, 2014 at 11:08 am

    Tipper–We got a “skiff” at best, but it’s cold as . . . (use any of those dozens of analogies you had a short time back). Along with snow cream, don’t overlook the fact that snow was once known as “poor man’s fertilizer.” All the contaminants folks worry about were once viewed as a blessing to the earth–snow cost nothing, nourished the soil, and melted slowly so that it all soaked in.
    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    Gayle Larson
    January 29, 2014 at 11:05 am

    We always had a can of Hershey syrup to top our snow cream.
    Great memory.

  • Reply
    speckled snowater
    January 29, 2014 at 10:34 am

    There he goes again!
    Someone grab Garland by the ear and drag him back behind the Hawaiian Sugar Shack!
    Doggone it, we know you’re warm as toast…LOL

  • Reply
    January 29, 2014 at 10:07 am

    The only time my mother made snow cream was when I was a child in Oak Ridge. Great memories, but maybe not the best idea.

  • Reply
    January 29, 2014 at 9:59 am

    I never experieced the making and eating of snow cream, but as children my brother and I had to shovel the snow and we would sneak a taste of the snow as we shoveled, that is, until our mom caught us. She always felt that it was unsanitary. However, before my old years end, I hope to someday make snow cream. It just whets my taste buds. Right now we are in Northeast FL, so we got a bit of rain, but no white fluff.

  • Reply
    speckled snowater
    January 29, 2014 at 9:54 am

    Take a clear tall thin glass, pack it with snow, set it covered in your warm kitchen, let it melt and have a look see! Eeeeewww!
    All snow has little specks of wood smoke dust, air borne rock and asphalt dust, coal fired fly-ash and just plain ole yucky stuff…probably some radiation, no matter where thou livith!

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    January 29, 2014 at 9:45 am

    I got inspired to make some snow cream after reading this, mainly because my south Florida wife had never heard of it and I haven’t had it since I was a kid in the 50s and 60s in East Tennessee. Harriette and I both enjoyed it. I mixed the milk, cream and vanilla ahead of time, then went out and gathered up a large bowl of clean snow and mixed the good stuff with it.
    My Mom used to make snow cream for us whenever we had a reasonable amount of snow. The snow is very cold, powdery and dry because the temp is 12 degrees.

  • Reply
    Garland Davis
    January 29, 2014 at 9:34 am

    Alas! No snow for snow cream….just a little rain…but then….this is Hawaii….

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    January 29, 2014 at 8:40 am

    I am a few miles south of Brevard, NC, only a few miles from the SC border. We got about 2 inches here. The snow started early yesterday morning as a very fine snow, but LOTS of flakes. It was that snow that was just wet enough to pack, but not slushy. Very dangerous for driving. A car slid in front of our house and hit something that destroyed the independent rear suspension and wiped out a neighbor’s mailbox and managed to cleanly clip the door from our mailbox, but leaving the box in place. The car was heavily damaged.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    January 29, 2014 at 8:29 am

    I’ve got a couple of inches of snow but I think our very cold temperatures makes our little two inches treacherous to drive on. I don’t plan to be out today. My driveway is steep and shaded so when it snows I just look for a good book to read.
    I made snow cream a time or two as a kid and used your same recipe, a little milk, sugar, and vanilla.
    I’m looking at those recipes from your readers using sweetened condensed milk and think that would be wonderful. I like sweetened condensed milk so much I can eat it out of the can. LOL! I don’t actually do it but I like it so much I think I could.
    Ken is your snow cream king. He mAkes it every time it snows!

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    January 29, 2014 at 8:27 am

    That sounds good

  • Reply
    Eva Nell Mull Wike, PhD
    January 29, 2014 at 8:25 am

    Hey Tipper: I do believe we beat you all over there in NC! The snow in my garden is AT LEAST five inches deep!
    Before daylight Jim took his Geiger Counter out in the Garden and took a few readings for radiation. The counter indicated the snow is just slightly contaminated with U235. Of course we live just ten miles from the K-25 site. WE HAVE BEEN TOLD THE SITE IS BEING CLEANED UP! Dah! Maybe in a thousand years!
    Just kidding about the ‘reading’ but the ‘clean-up’ is really being conducted! Even so, we won’t be making any snow cream today!
    Stay warm!
    Eva Nell

  • Reply
    Ron Banks
    January 29, 2014 at 8:21 am

    Mother made snow cream for us but she was reluctant because she heard somewhere that it contained “fallout” in it. As a child of the sixties, we were accustomed to the nuclear threat from the Russians. There were “Fallout Shelters” designated in some towns. I’m not sure if the tiny little town of Ellijay had one or not. My mother, who was as sweet as anyone was also a worrier and if she heard something of that nature you could bet she would not forget it. She did loosen up some in her later years I guess because she realized she had not killed any of us and we all made it to adulthood. I started to make snow cream yesterday but never got around to it. We did go sledding and had a blast. It’s 8 degrees here on this snow covered morning as I sit here with my coffee,two boys, two dogs and my wife, pondering snow cream, fallout and life.

    • Reply
      March 15, 2022 at 8:07 am

      My mother also used to tell us not to eat the first snow of the winter because of the fallout. One day I thought on what she said and then asked her what kept the rain from clearing it out. She became very quiet and from then on we made snow cream every. Eventually Mayfield Dairy came out with their version of snow cream.

  • Reply
    Janet Smart
    January 29, 2014 at 7:35 am

    My son and i made snow cream the other night. As he said on his facebook page – ‘we winged it’ as far as to how much milk, sugar and vanilla we added to the snow. It was good! My cousin was down the road from us making snow cream at the same time we were. She said she added snow to sweetened condensed milk until it was the right consistency. She said she liked it better made that way.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    January 29, 2014 at 7:18 am

    We got a whopping 2″ here. First of the season for us. Hopefully the last!
    When I was a kid we thought the 1st snow had radiation in it from over in Oak Ridge. My uncle Ralph moved to Maryville and worked at Oak Ridge. Within a few years his hair had turned completely white while all his siblings didn’t have any gray. That was proof enough for us, so no snow cream for us until the 2nd snowfall. Mommy made our snow cream in a big dishpan.

  • Reply
    Sue Crane
    January 29, 2014 at 7:15 am

    Love snow cream! Being in Fl I don’t get too much 🙂 your make do recipe sounds like what my grandmother did. Poke a hole in a snowball with your thumb and fill it with syrup – that’s pretty good, too. My grandad’s thumb worked much better than mine!

  • Reply
    Judy Mincey
    January 29, 2014 at 7:11 am

    I may walk down to Mother’s and make some snow cream.

  • Reply
    Judy Mincey
    January 29, 2014 at 7:09 am

    I have about 3″ over ice. I won’t be going anywhere unless someone comes to get me. I don’t want to drive down the hill in my one and only vehicle risking my one and only body. If they want me to work they can come and get me.

  • Reply
    b. Ruth
    January 29, 2014 at 6:39 am

    Good (cold) morning to you! Right now my computer thermometer is saying 4 degrees. Now then, I don’t know where this info comes from but I betcha it is much colder on our hill.
    Ahhh, snowcream! I would like to have a big bowl. I am not sure I could find clean snow now-a-days!
    With the “birdies” flying hither and yon and the varmits prowling around, hmmmmm! I don’t think so!
    My Mother would never make snow cream unless the snow was really deep. She also preferred it to be snowing as she gathered a big bowl. She didn’t want no snow that had been sittin’ around a while! She always said either wait on the second snow or wait til there was a deep snow.
    Our recipe was about the same as yours. Milk (whole milk), sugar, vanilla and snow. Occasionally Mom would whip cocoa into the milk and pour in to make a chocolate bowl full, she added a pinch of salt to cut the bitterness.
    I used to get my snow off our old wooden picnic table in the back of the house. Now it is a bird flyover so I don’t know if I can find any clean snow today!
    Stay warm…Spring is just around two corners and a block and a half! LOL
    Thanks Tipper, perfect post for today!

  • Reply
    January 29, 2014 at 6:17 am

    We only got a dusting, Thank the Good Lord, it got a little slick on the Mountains in Morgan County before Lunch, I was sliding around a bit in some areas, but pretty much melted away later…

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