Posting on or simply perusing through TikTok has become a favorite pastime of the pandemic. And aside from dance challenges, short videos of food hacks like whipped coffee and milking cucumbers (what?) have taken centerstage.
Now, with summer just around the corner, many are starting to get nostalgic for their favorite blended frozen drink from Starbucks. It turns out you don't have to wait at a drive-thru or order through an app to get that authentic Frappuccino experience.
A new hack taking over TikTok shows people taking a store-bought bottled version of a Frappuccino, placing it in their freezers and, after waiting for a bit, the drink inside is the slushy consistency of the classic beverage one would find in a Starbucks cafe.
"This is actually so cool," TikTok user @naatalie_lee posted after trying the trick. She even used a straw to show off the slush-like final results. Her video has over 1,000 comments.
Other TikTok users, like @DeeZombiie, have tried the hack with great success, too.
“I started with an hour in the freezer, it wasn’t quite enough. It ended up being two hours,” Denise Butler, aka @DeeZombiie, told TODAY. “I shook it a few times before taking the lid off and breaking it up a bit with my reusable straw. It melts pretty quickly. It’s very comparable to the original Starbucks Frappuccino."
While this might seem like a simple and easy way to get one's Frapp fix, sweet coffee lovers should proceed with caution since many types of glass may crack when exposed to sub zero temperatures. Not only will you be left with broken glass in your freezer, but the contents within will be all over your frozen food.
“The main reason glass and even reusable Tupperware (containers) crack is because food and liquid expand when frozen,” Palak Patel, chef at the Institute of Culinary Education, told TODAY. According to Patel, a common mistake people often make at home is filling these containers and bottles all the way, which doesn't leave any extra space for that liquid to expand. “This expansion adds pressure to the container and can eventually crack it,” said Patel.
Patel added that while there are special Mason jars meant to be frozen, "not all glass is safe to freeze."
If you're filling something up yourself, leaving plenty of room at the top of your glass or Tupperware container should allow you to freeze it safely. But freezing a sealed, store-bought item, like a bottled Frappuccino, doesn't allow you much wiggle room.
Patel did recommend other methods for Frapp lovers who want a cafe-like experience at home.
"The safest way is (freezing the drink) on a small metal baking tray, so the liquid has plenty of surface space and cools more quickly,” said Patel. Then you can break up the icy chunks and toss them in a blender.
If you don't want to wait for anything to freeze, simply add the bottled beverage to a high-speed blender with ice. This might water the drink down a bit, but it's fast and you won't have to worry about glass cracking in your freezer.
Starbucks doesn't want customers to risk messing up their freezers, either.
“We love seeing the creative at-home recipes that our customers come up with,” a spokesperson for Starbucks told TODAY via email. “For the safety of our customers, we do not recommend freezing Starbucks Bottled Frappuccino as this may cause the glass bottle to crack."
The spokesperson continued, "We encourage customers looking for a cool and creamy drink to pour their Starbucks Bottled Frappuccino over ice or shake with ice in a cocktail shaker and pour into a chilled glass."