Drinks are the life of any party, but the taste of these drinks depends on how cold they are; that’s why lukewarm beverages taste bland. However, ensuring your drinks are chilled to the right temperature before your party starts is no easy feat.
With the advancement of technology, we can chill our drinks quickly in the freezer, but it still takes time to get them to the right temperature. The chilling in the freezer of your beverages varies based on the packing it comes in, e.g., glass bottles or aluminum cans.
So, how long does it take for drinks to get cold in the freezer?
On standard, it takes roughly 25 minutes to an hour to get your drinks to the optimum temperature for drinking (from 72°F to 40-45°F). But you can reduce this by applying simple tricks to shorten the cooling time. However, it won’t be less than three-five minutes.
The article will discuss several tips and tricks to significantly reduce the cooling time of the drinks in your freezer.
How To Shorten the Cooling Time of Drinks
The freezer isn’t a magic wand that will give you a chilled drink on the fly, but you have to wait for some time (almost 20-30 minutes) to get the drink that hits the spot.
However, you don’t have to feel constrained by this cooling time; you can shorten it to 3-4 times if you use the correct methods and have a nicely chilled drink in less than 5-10 minutes.
I have put together a list of five different methods you can choose from.
1. Wet Towel Wrapping (15 Minutes)
This option is the first one at your disposal and can help cool your drinks within 15 minutes. But it doesn’t come without any catch, as the cloth is soaked, it gets stuck to the cans or bottles as well as the freezer surface, which is a headache to remove.
That’s why, unless you store them in a separate container inside your freezer, it gives you more trouble than cooling them quickly.
The mechanism behind the quick cooling in this method relates to evaporation.
2. Cold Water, Salt, and a Bucket (5–10 Minutes)
The best option for a chilled beverage in 5-10 minutes is to use a bucket of cold water with plenty of salt. Start by stuffing your drinks inside the bucket and put them in the freezer, and you will have your drinks chilled readily.
The mechanism behind the salt and cold water method relates to how salt is thrown on the road in winter to melt snow. Salt reduces the freezing point of water, leading to water freezing at a lower temperature. It creates a wide gradient for heat transfer, so it ends up cooling your drinks quickly.
3. Innovative Gadgets (Less Than 5 Minutes)
The next option is more of an extension of option two rather than a standalone method, but it is better to describe it separately because it reduces the cooling time further to less than five minutes.
Try using a SpinChill to cool your beverages faster. The icy water bucket with salt, with the addition of SpinChill, cools your drinks twice as fast. The reason behind this is the introduction of another mode of heat transfer, i.e., convection.
Consequently, the transfer of heat from the warmer fluid of your beverage has more room to choose and tries to reach an equilibrium at a faster rate, and you get a chilled drink faster.
4. Dry Ice (Roughly 10 Minutes)
While dry ice may seem like the most lucrative option, it isn’t without any risks, and worst of all, it still takes roughly ten minutes to give you the chilled beverage.
While using dry ice, you have to ensure you don’t directly contact it with the warmer surface of your drink as it will melt the dry ice, leading to a build-up of CO2 and even causing skin burns upon direct contact.
5. A Not-So-Good Option (Few Seconds to a Minute)
While this option is the fastest one to get a chilled drink on the fly, it isn’t without any faults. And yeah, you guessed it! There is a catch.
This method follows the same principle as using a fire extinguisher to cool your beverage, but they contain chemicals and create a huge mess, which can take a lot more time to clean compared to a shorter chilling time.
An alternative to this is using compressed air, which provides a similar effect without any adverse effects from chemicals. But these are expensive, and you can get a bundle of your beverages for the price of one.
The principle behind the cooling effect of this method lies in the compression and expansion of an air-conditioner. Check this article out for more technical detail on why the sudden expansion of gasses causes cooling.
Don’t store your beverages in the freezer for too long, as they can explode, and carbonation gets lost (plain drink) if they are frozen.
Lastly, you are now familiar with how long it takes for drinks to get cold in the freezer.
However, to reiterate, if you place your beverage in the freezer, you have to wait anywhere between 20 minutes to an hour for a perfectly chilled one.
But you can shorten this time to fifteen minutes by wrapping the drink with a wet towel, to ten minutes by using dry ice, between 5-10 minutes by using cold water and salt, less than 5 minutes by using a rotary machine, chilled water, and salt, and lastly, on the fly by using compressed air.