Utilizing Meat In Your Recipes

Five Things You Can Do With Extra Dry Ice

by Levi Ortiz

If you ordered frozen food or medication in the mail, chances are good that it came with some dry ice. If that dry ice is still frozen, it's a shame to just throw it away. There are so many fun (and in some cases, useful) things you can do with leftover dry ice. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Save It For An Emergency

You could just stash the dry ice away in your freezer and save it for an emergency. If the power ever goes out, you can use it to keep your food cold in a cooler. If you have a medication that cannot be exposed to the warmth, having dry ice on hand will keep it a suitable temperature when the power goes out. 

Make Fog

Dry ice is frozen carbon dioxide. It gets its name from the fact that it turns straight from ice into a gas. As it makes this change of phase, it looks like fog. So you and your kids could have a Halloween party or even a celebration for some other occasion and use the dry ice to make fog. Just set it in a bowl on the counter and let the harmless fog fill the room and add to the ambiance. It will look even cooler if you dim the lights and aim a single flashlight or spotlight towards the area where the dry ice is turning into a gas.

Make Your Own Soda

Soda is just carbonated water -- it has had carbon dioxide dissolved into it to form bubbles. If you have some dry ice, you probably have everything you need to make sparkling water or soda. Start by smashing the dry ice into smaller pieces. Then, add about 1/4 pound of dry ice to a bug pitcher. Stir in 1 quart of the liquid of your choice. You can use plain water, fruit juice, or even sweet tea. Cover the pitcher lightly with a lid. (Your lid should not be air tight). Let the carbon dioxide dissolve. It should be ready to drink as soon as the dry ice is fully dissolved.

Remember not to handle the dry ice with bare skin, as it may burn you. Always wear gloves or use tongues when making soda at home.

Get Rid of Gophers

If you have gophers in your yard, dry ice may be a safe and eco-friendly way to get rid of them. Just place a small chunk of the dry ice near the opening to the gopher hole. The fogging carbon dioxide gas will urge them out of the hole. When you see the gopher run out of the hole, use some gravel and soil to pack the hole shut so the gopher does not return.

Accelerate the Growth of Plants

Plants need carbon dioxide to grow, and dry ice is certainly a source of carbon dioxide. You may be able to boost your plants' growth by placing a small piece of dry ice near them and letting it turn into a gas. Make sure you do not place the ice so close to the plants that it touches them or makes the air immediately around them too cold, as this may have the opposite effect you desire.

Getting some dry ice in the mail with a package can be quite exciting. Whether you stash the dry ice away for use in an emergency or use it for one of the more enjoyable purposes on this list, make sure you don't allow this valuable product to go to waste.

Visit sites like http://www.unitedcityicecube.com if you're considering ordering dry ice for yourself.