4 Easy Steps to Remove Ice Cream Stains

How to Remove Ice Cream Stains from Clothes

The Spruce / Madelyn Goodnight

Project Overview
  • Working Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hr, 20 mins

Ice cream goes with everything until it drizzles down your shirt. At first, ice cream may seem like a harmless stain but because it is protein-based, it can be one of the most difficult dry stains to fully remove. You may think it is completely gone, but slowly a brown or yellowish ring will reappear on the laundry. If that area has already been dried in the dryer, you may have a very difficult time removing the stain completely from the clothing.

materials and supplies needed for ice cream stain removal
The Spruce / Letícia Almeida
Stain Type Protein-based
Detergent Type Liquid laundry detergent
Water Temperature Cold

Click Play to Learn How to Quickly Remove Ice Cream Stains From Clothing

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Dull knife or spoon


  • Liquid laundry detergent
  • Stain remover spray, stick, or gel


How to Treat an Ice Cream Spill

  1. Treat the Spill

    Treat ice cream stains as soon as possible for the best results. Put the stained fabric into cold water for 5 to 10 minutes or longer if the stain is dried. Avoid hot water which will set a protein stain.

    garment submerged in cold water
    The Spruce / Letícia Almeida 
  2. Rub Laundry Detergent Into the Stain

    If you can still see any remains of the stain, rub liquid laundry detergent into the stained area and soak in room temperature water for 30 minutes. Rub the stain gently every few minutes. If you don't have liquid laundry detergent, try dish soap instead.

    adding laundry detergent to the stained item
    The Spruce / Letícia Almeida
  3. Rinse and Add Stain Remover

    After rinsing the clothing, add a stain remover to the stained area. Allow it to sit for 7 to 10 minutes before rinsing completely with cold water.

    person rinsing the affected item
    The Spruce / Letícia Almeida
  4. Repeat Steps Until Stain Is Gone

    Repeat the soaking and stain remover steps until no ice cream is left in the clothing. Be sure you don't see any remaining stain because once the fabric is dried, it will be nearly impossible to remove it. Proceed with washing the clothing according to the fabric directions.

    person checking to see if stain has been lifted
    The Spruce / Letícia Almeida 

Removing Dried Ice Cream

If an ice cream spill has already dried, follow these steps to remove the stain.

  1. Scrape Off Stain Remnants

    Try to remove as much of the dried ice cream as possible using a spoon or dull knife.

    using a dull knife to remove dried ice cream stains
    The Spruce / Letícia Almeida
  2. Apply Laundry Detergent and Soak

    Rub liquid laundry detergent into the stained area and allow the stain to soak in cold water for at least 30 minutes.

  3. Rub the Stain

    Gently rub the stained area between your fingers every 3-5 minutes in order to allow the liquid detergent to fully penetrate the stain

  4. Follow Ice Cream Stain Removal Steps

    Now you can begin the steps listed above for fresh stains.

Remove Ice Cream Stains From Clothing

For clothing with ice cream stains, follow the steps above and tips below to remove and get your garments back in tip-top shape.

  • Do not dry the ice cream stained clothing in your clothes dryer until you are absolutely sure the stained area is fully gone. It's better to allow the item to air dry first.
  • If the stained area still has a slightly yellowish or brownish area, repeat the stain removal steps above as many times as needed. Putting the clothing in a dryer may set the stain forever, so you'll need to be sure it is fully gone before drying.

Remove Ice Cream Stains From Upholstery

If you have ice cream stains on upholstery, follow these steps to treat the affected area.


  • Liquid dishwashing soap
  • Cool water


  • Clean white cloth
  • Sponge
  1. Blot the Stain

    Blot excess ice cream from the fabric, but be careful not to spread it and make the stain larger.

  2. Make and Apply a Stain Removing Solution

    Mix one tablespoon of dishwashing liquid with two cups of cool water. Sponge the spot with this solution on a clean white cloth, then blot until the liquid is absorbed. Only wet the upholstery as little as necessary to remove the stain.

  3. Repeat the Steps

    Repeat this process until the stain is lifted.

  4. Sponge Away the Cleaning Solution

    Once the stain is completely gone, use plain cold water on a new white cloth and sponge the area to remove the remainder of the cleaning solution. Blot dry.