Ice in Spanish Language

understanding french wine

With the heat’s absence, all things get frozen, from water to feelings.

Has this ever happened to you?

Don’t let your life freeze but learn how to say ice in Spanish language!

Ice etymology

The literal translation of ice in Spanish is hielo. This word comes from the Latin gelum-, with the same meaning. Curiously, in Latin, the letter “g” can change to “h” and “y”, hence the slight change in this word.

What is ice in Spanish language

Ice is a masculine noun referring to any fluid that is in a solid-state by cooling or progressive temperature decrease. Another meaning is to remain paralyzed in a certain situation. But it also indicates indifference or affective apathy.

On the other hand, ice serves as a transitive verb indicating the freezing process of fluid. So we can use the word hielo in Spanish in different contexts that are not necessarily related to each other.

How to say ice in Spanish language

You can use this word in many different contexts, such as ordering ice for your drink, freezing the screen, and breaking the ice. Hence the importance of knowing how to use the term at the right time. Now we will show you how to say ice in Spanish language.

Hielo / Ice

In Spanish, the word hielo is a literal translation of ice. It’s a masculine noun used for designating water in a solid-state.

In the absence of temperature, specifically at zero degrees Celsius, ice is produced, which is why it is so cold. This is another property that lets us analogize the feelings or attitude towards life with solid water.

Señorita, podría traerme un cubo de hielo para el champagne?

Miss, could you bring me some ice for the champagne?

Aplicar un poco de hielo es el mejor remedio para las contusiones.

Applying a little ice is the best remedy for bruises.

Con el pasar de la vida mi corazón se volvió hielo hasta que me perdí en el fuego de tu mirada.

As life went by my heart turned to ice until I lost myself in the fire of your gaze.

La ley del hielo o tratamiento silencioso es una sigilosa forma de violencia.

Ice law or silent treatment is a stealthy form of violence.

Mientras ambos se observaban de reojo, él dejó escapar un ronquido para romper el hielo.

As the two watched each other out of the corner of his eye, he let out a snore to break the ice.

Nieve / Ice

Nieve is a meteorological phenomenon of very small ice crystals precipitation. This gives it a fluffy, fresh, and delicious appearance. For this reason, in many Spanish-speaking countries, water-based ice cream is known as nieve (snow).

For example, when you say “quiero una nieve de parchita” (I want a parchita snow). In English would not make any sense in a literal translation.

Hacía mucho calor y yo solo quería una nieve de limón.

It was very hot and I just wanted lemon ice snow.

Cuando voy al parque con mi perro, ambos disfrutamos de una nieve de tamarindo.

When I go to the park with my dog, we both enjoy tamarind ice.

En las vacaciones de verano todos nos reunimos y vamos por unas nieves.

In the summer vacations, we all get together and go for some ice cream.

Helado / Ice

The term helado / ice cream in Spanish has two meanings. On the one hand, it is something very cold; on the other hand, it is a frozen dessert made from cream or milk.

El armazón de hierro estaba helado por el extremo descenso de la temperatura.

The iron frame was iced by the extreme temperature drop.

Ella nació en el helado corredor del hospital.

She was born in the ice-cold hospital hallway.

Mi helado favorito es el de chocolate con trocitos de brownie y sirope de chocolate.

My favorite ice cream is chocolate with brownie pieces and chocolate syrup.

Ice as a transitive verb

Using the word ice as a transitive verb allows us to refer to the freezing or cooling process of things. You can also use it to refer to feelings or actions, as we have explained before. Let´s see how it works!

Enfriar / Ice

Enfriar / ice refers to lowering the temperature of a body, either to cool it or to cool it further. It also indicates a decrease in the intensity of a phenomenon, activity, feeling, or relationship between people.

El aire acondicionado nos permite enfriar la temperatura dentro de una construcción.

Air conditioning allows us to ice the temperature inside a building.

Todos los amantes llegan a un punto en que se enfría su pasión.

All lovers reach a point where their passion ices over.

Helar / Ice

By helar / ice, we mean that the temperature of something is below zero degrees. It also means the process of solidifying liquids through the cold application.

Creo que pondré mi té a helar.

I think I’ll put my tea on ice.

Comenzó a helar y todos fuimos por nuestros abrigos.

It started to ice over and we all went to get our coats.

Poner hielo / Ice

Many people choose poner hielo / ice in a variety of circumstances. It´s also medicinal and helps relieve swelling, cramps, bruises, and muscle aches.

Todas las noches después del trabajo debo poner hielo a mis pies para aliviar mi circulación.

Every night after work, I have to ice my feet to relieve my blood circulation.

Me gusta poner hielo a mi soda.

I like to ice my soda.

Glasear / Ice

Glasear / ice is to glaze a dessert by sprinkling some sugar, syrup, jam, chocolate, or by heating it. This process can be applied not only in gastronomy but also on paper and textile.

Hoy enfriaré el pastel y mañana lo glacearé.

I will cool the cake today and icing it tomorrow.

Quiero que las invitaciones de mi boda sean en cartulina negra glaseada.

I want my wedding invitations to be on black iced cardstock.

Other expressions for ice in Spanish

We have mentioned the most frequently used ways to say ice. However, we still have other expressions for ice in Spanish, let’s see.

Cubo de hielo

Ice cube





Patinaje sobre hielo

Ice skating


Ice cream shop

Pista de hielo

Ice rink

Hockey sobre hielo

Ice hockey

Helado frito

Fried ice cream


Ice pick

Era de hielo

Ice age

Don’t let your Spanish turn to ice

As you have seen, ice is a very peculiar and useful element in daily life. Its applications range from medical and anti-aging treatments to anything you can imagine in the kitchen.

It is also an indication of losing interest in something or someone. So don’t let your Spanish turn to ice and practice it daily, you’ll see how you improve!

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