The 7 Best Popsicles in the world are available on

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We are testing new popsicle molds from Tivolo, Lékué, and Zoku.

Popsicles are one of the most satisfying things to do on hot summer days.The best popsicle molds are easy to store and remove treats from.After researching dozens of popsicle molds, testing 26, and making 140 ice pops over the years, we found that the Zoku Round PopMolds are the most consistent and modern-looking pops of all the molds we have made.

The spherical pops held together best in our testing and were easy to use.The 3-ounce size of the molds makes them perfect for kids and adults.

Despite testing 15 molds this year, 10 new ones and the five picks from our 2013 review, we found that most of the original winners still make the best pops.For the second time, the Zoku Round PopMolds proved to be the leader.The Zoku set creates treats that are the right size for kids or adults, and they are among the least messy to eat thanks to the drip guards on the sticks.Compared with plastic molds, the peel-away silicone design releases pops far easier, and they are simpler to fill than other silicone versions.The Zoku Round PopMolds were more durable than the others we tested.They work well for all types of pop, and retail for less than $18, making them the right choice for most households.

The plastic oblong molds work as well as our main pick because they don't release the pops as easily.The pops are more likely to break and be messy to eat.

We would get the Zoku Classic PopMold if our main pick sells out.They need to be run under hot water to set the pops free because they are oblong and made of plastic.The molds have a larger footprint in the freezer, but they can make six pops at once.The pop shape is a little messier to eat because the handles don't have a drip guard.If you like to bite into a pop, they are ideal.The Zoku Round PopMolds are opaque.Since you can see which flavor pop you are grabbing more easily, that is useful if you tend to make more than one flavor at a time.

These molds can produce 10 pops at once.It is more difficult to get the pops out of the plastic molds.

The Norpro Ice Pop Maker is great for serving a crowd.You will get 10 pops all at the same time and they look just like the pops you would have gotten at an ice-cream truck.It is difficult to get just one out at a time because the plastic molds need to be run under hot water.It can be difficult to remove the lid from the mold.It is the best option for when you need a lot of pops at the same time.It has a sleek profile, so you won't have to clear out a lot of freezer space to make room for it.

The clever under-the-sea molds make smaller-than-average pops so they are more manageable for little ones to finish.Silicone releases are easier to overfill than our main pick.

We recommend the Zoku Fish PopMolds.The adorable aquatic figurines are adorable, and they looked professional regardless of the pop recipe.Like our main pick, it is easy to pull the fish pops from their silicone molds, each of which holds about 1.5 ounces, a great size for toddlers on up to elementary-aged kids.It is not always obvious which of the playfully-shaped plastic sticks corresponds to which pop, and the molds are easy to overfill.These were the easiest to use of the kid-specific molds we tried.The Zoku molds have a large freezer footprint, but they are incomparable in terms of visuals.

The spherical pops held together best in our testing and were easy to use.The 3-ounce size of the molds makes them perfect for kids and adults.

The plastic oblong molds work as well as our main pick because they don't release the pops as easily.The pops are more likely to break and be messy to eat.

These molds can produce 10 pops at once.It is more difficult to get the pops out of the plastic molds.

The clever under-the-sea molds make smaller-than-average pops so they are more manageable for little ones to finish.Silicone releases are easier to overfill than our main pick.

I was the senior editor of BUST Magazine for three years.I wrote recipes during that time.I supervised photoshoots and worked with chefs on food features.I am an editor at a major national women's magazine, covering food as well as other sections.

In order to find out which features were most important in a pop mold, which materials work best for a home cook, and how to make the best pops, I interviewed the owner of Popbar and the author of the cookbook.The original guide featured interviews with a food scientist at the University of Guelph and a pop shop in Brooklyn.

Most home cooks function just fine without Popsicle molds.You will be very happy to have kids or overheated party guests at your house during the summer.Nothing tastes better on a hot day than a popsicle, pulled out of the freezer and eaten under an umbrella.

Making your own popsicles is perfect for food scientists who want to experiment with flavors.If you don't have the budget for an ice-cream maker, a set of molds and a waiting freezer is all you need to become a popsicle maestro.The process is fun and simple for kids or adults and can be tailored for those with special needs.

In our tests, we found that creamier pops worked well in the more elaborate molds, but tended to lose detail faster than juice pops once they started melting.

There are three different materials for molds.Each has pros and cons.

Plastic molds are cheap and readily available, but they are prone to breakage and can be difficult to use, as they need to be run under hot water until they will release their popsicle cargo.For home use, you can definitely go with the plastic one, but the owner of PopBar wouldn't say which material his stores use for their molds.I don't think it's going to affect the quality in the long run, and they'll stay good for minor consumption

Accidental puncture of pop molds with a sharp object in the dishwasher, cabinet, or sink can cause them to be permanently out of commission.They emit a not-too-pleasant smell and are more likely to hold onto the odors of pops past.Silicone is a good material for pop molds because it doesn't become brittle at freezing temperatures and will peel away from frozen matter.Plastic under a microscope is very rough, with lots of nooks and crannies, so ice can easily adhere to it and that makes withdrawal of a frozen novelty from a plastic mold difficult.Silicone molds are much preferred for ease of removal, and they are smoother, but more importantly silicone repels water, so the lack of stick is mostly due to the absence of interaction between water/ice and silicone at the surface of the mold.

A novice pop maker may be willing to spend more on a piece of steel than it costs to source it.She said, "I haven't tried metal molds, they're expensive and not that easy to find, as far as I know."

The best molds hold between 3 and 3.5 ounces.Smaller pops aren't enough unless you're exclusively feeding toddlers.The best pops for toddlers are between 1.25 and 1.5 ounces.

Popsicles can fall over if your refrigerator is disorganized.If the mold is made of plastic and requires some running under hot water to release the pop, it's difficult to eat just one.

Most molds come with sticks, and some have built-in guards to collect sticky drops before they hit your shirt.popsicle sticks don't present a hazard to children if they feel smooth in the mouth during the final stages of eating.When you run out of sticks and can't make pops on your own, buying wooden sticks seems like a hassle.Ferreira told us that she doesn't like the look or feel of pops with plastic sticks and always opts for wood.

The 16 molds we tested made approximately 60 pops.We spoke with experts, scoured Amazon and food blogs, and re-read well-respected editorial sources to find 10 additional molds with a focus on Silicone push-up pops, classic pops and cute kid-friendly styles.We made about 80 pops after testing them against our original winners.Several of the molds we tested and dismissed have seen stock issues, but we have listed available ones in the competition.

To find out if the molds had trouble with certain pop types, we tried four different popsicle recipes in each mold.We did two rounds of pop testing in each mold, then hand-washed all the molds to see how difficult they were to clean or care for.

The spherical pops held together best in our testing and were easy to use.The 3-ounce size of the molds makes them perfect for kids and adults.

The Zoku Round PopMolds came out ahead of the competition again after considering 26 and testing 15.The most consistent pops were produced by these molds, and they are more glamorous and modern-looking than a classic rectangular pop.The smooth, spherical pops were less likely to break.The well-constructed stand was easier to fill than most of the molds we used.It was more resistant to breakage than the other molds we tried.This is one of the few molds that you don't need to run under hot water to release the treat because you can remove the pops from glove-like silicone sheaths.

The pops came out in a smooth symmetrical shape that looked modern and unexpected, like treats you could serve at a party full of style-conscious grown-ups.

The round, 3-ounce pops were easy to eat, and their perfect spherical shape meant they were less likely to shatter midway through the eating experience than the Cuisipro robot pops.The Zoku Round Pops were resistant to shattering, even if you are a pop licker or a biter.

Thanks to the lightweight stand that securely holds the molds in place during the pouring process, the Zoku Round pops are easier to fill.The wide silicone "lip" on each mold means you are less likely to overfill them and have a spill incident.It was difficult to judge whether Tovolo's ice cream pops were secure because they had separate plastic molds that had to be pressed into their stands.Other molds were more difficult to fill.The mouth of the molds at the Norpro and Progressive International are very narrow, leading to frequent spills during the pouring process.The push-pop molds we tried did not come with stands, so filling them was difficult.

It was very easy to remove the Zoku round pop because of its Silicone mold.These don't need to be run under hot water before you can get your pop, unlike nearly every other mold we tested.The mold can be cleaned without any hassle since it turns inside out.

I couldn't resist the "pop"-ular mold.They received an average of 4.5 out of five stars on Amazon.

You need a more oblong shape for the pops to be made.The pops are too large and oddly shaped to fit in all but the most Steven Tyler-sized mouths, so they are hard to bite.

You only get four pops in each mold and the large plastic stand takes up a lot of space in the freezer.You only get four pop molds for $19, and there are cheaper ones on the market that offer more pops at once.

The plastic oblong molds work as well as our main pick because they don't release the pops as easily.The pops are more likely to break and be messy to eat.

We like the Zoku Classic PopMolds if they sell out.They look similar to the round version, but have more oblong pops and are made of plastic.The classic version is easy to take to the freezer.The round mold has a footprint of 7 by 5 inches.The design of these molds makes them harder to use and make them pop a bit more messy.

The Zoku round version is easier to use than the plastic molds because you need to run them under hot water.The classic molds don't come with a guard on their plastic sticks, so the pops are more messy to eat.The sticks need to be snapped together.The pops are prone to breaking.

If that is a concern, these pops are more pleasant to eat than the Zoku Round Pops.It is easier to remove the pops from their plastic molds.They earned an average of 4.5 stars out of five from Amazon reviewers.

These molds can produce 10 pops at once.It is more difficult to get the pops out of the plastic molds.

If you make lots of ice pops for a party or gathering, the winner from our first review is still the champion.You will get 10 pops all at once with the Norpro Ice Pop Maker.The pops are nicely sized and have that classic rectangular popsicle shape you would find in a grocery store or in your grandmother's freezer.

It is difficult to find molds that make 10 or more pops at once, which is a big plus for Norpro.It is very difficult to get your pops out of the plastic prisons.The 10 popsicles are connected to a plastic top, which means you have to run the entire mold under hot water from different angles.If you only want one popsicle, that can be very time consuming.

It is the best option for when you need a lot of pops at the same time.You won't have to clear out a lot of freezer space to make room for it because it's sleek, profile-wise.The plastic lid of the Norpro was better than the metal one that we tried.The Norpro is $16 on Amazon, compared to $24 for the PI mold, which makes us vote in favor of the former.

You will need to buy disposable wooden pop sticks if you want to use this mold.

The set was recommended by David Carrell at People's Pops.His team used to use it, but now use a proprietary industrial pop maker.The molds earned an average of four out of five stars on Amazon, with over 1,700 reviewers weighing in.

The clever under-the-sea molds make smaller-than-average pops so they are more manageable for little ones to finish.Silicone releases are easier to overfill than our main pick.

The Zoku Fish PopMolds are a great alternative for kids.They made us shriek when we freed the pops from the sheaths, the shapes are professional and crisp.The right size for little ones is 1.25 to 1.5 ounces.The size and shapes of the silicone molds make them less versatile for the whole family.

The molds are easy to overfill.The plastic handles don't lock into place when you insert them and they rest jauntily on top of the liquid.The first time you use them, it is not a design flaw.There is a small symbol on each mold of the clownfish, shark, whale, octopus, scuba diver, and puffer fish that correspond to a popsicle stick.To see the symbols, you can't overfill them, so you need to match the shape on the mold to the stick.We're sure kids would be amused by the sight of the scuba diver with squid legs, and mixing and matching them correctly isn't that detrimental to the final pop.

The Fish molds have a slight chemical smell out of the box, but it should go away after the first few times you wash them.

I didn't find that to be a problem with the Fish Pop molds, as Charity told me that creamier recipes often do not show detail as well when placed in elaborate molds.The molds hold so little liquid that they freeze more solidly than larger ones.The Zoku Fish pops were the most detailed molds I tried, but the way they are unsheathed from their silicone molds made it easy to remove, and the finished pops retained an impressive level of detail regardless of the recipe.

The Tovolo Rocket molds were the winner in the fun shapes category, but I found the molds difficult to clean, and while the rocket is cute, it couldn't hold a candle to the adorable little aquatic figurines that came out of Zoku'.The other kid-specific molds were the same.

Zoku Fish PopMolds earned a 4.5-star average out of five stars, with over 600 reviews, on Amazon and were recommended by Good Housekeeping.

All of the Zoku molds we tried are not dishwasher safe, so make sure to consult the box to see if they are safe.As with any Silicone product, take care not to use harsh pads or wool while cleaning, so that you don't scratch the molds.You don't want to accidentally puncture them if you keep them far from knives or other objects in the dishwasher or sink.

There are tons of tricks you can use to get rid of the smell if you are bothered by it.

You can always use wooden pop sticks if you don't like using plastic sticks.A hack she uses to modify molds that come with plastic sticks is to cover the top of the mold with foil, make a slit in the foil and insert the stick.While the mixture is frozen, that holds the stick in place.

Many of the molds we tested are out of stock or have been discontinued, and they had a variety of problems, including odor-clinging silicone, hard-to- clean bases and drippy designs.

The Cuisipro Mini PopMold made small pops that were just the right size for kids and had a small, discreet tray.The molds have interlocking segments that allow the sticks to fit together, making them more stable for pouring and placing in the freezer.At four pops for $16, they are not the cheapest options, but they felt well-made and the resulting egg-shaped pop was easier to eat than the ultra-round Zoku pops.When they are being transferred from the countertop to the freezer, the handles fit snug on the mold, making them less prone to spillage.These pops were not as cute as the Zoku Fish Pops, so they wouldn't be our first pick.

The Freezycup Stainless Steel Individual Ice Pop Molds cost $9 each.The size of the pop is manageable for adults and children, and the tubular shape makes them easier to lick or bite than larger pop shapes.The dripped catcher is a metal disc with a rubber gasket that you slide onto a popsicle stick.The molds needed to be placed into their wooden stand because our freezer's wire shelves meant they couldn't stand up on their own.We had to wedge the molds in because the holes where they should fit weren't the right size.The bamboo popsicle sticks that come with each mold look similar to the wooden ones, so we were concerned about the possibility of accidentally trashing them.

The Tovolo bug-shaped molds held 3 to 4 ounces of pop, but were too large for the kiddie crowd.The leaf shaped stand and vine-like handles made them stand out from the pack of cute-shaped molds, but the handle is prone to break, and the drip cup is nearly impossible to drink from without spilling on yourself.

The Tovolo Groovy Ice PopMolds were not good for anything other than fruity pops.The popsicle won't come out if the stick is not pulled out.We dropped them on the floor with frozen ice inside.

Tovolo's Pop Molds only hold one ounce of liquid.The pops are difficult to get out of the tray, and the stick tends to break in half, according to reviewers.

The ice pops we made broke in half almost every time.We spent too long trying to get the little bit of ice pop stuck at the bottom of the mold to melt enough to drink because they are nicely-shaped and a reasonable size.

The Popze IcePopIt molds are expensive because they look the same as some of the other push-pop molds we were testing.

Users complained that the opening of the mold was too narrow, which made them difficult to fill.They had only 14 reviews, making them less known than we would have liked.

The Jelly Belly Lickety Ice PopMold is cheap, prone to breaking, and hard plastic makes it difficult to get each mold out.The biggest negative of the Norpro is that all the molds are connected.

The Chosigt ice pop maker is a popular pick, but reviewers at Amazon don't like how small the pops are.A good fit for children, but not for adults.

Cuisipro makes a pop mold.We tried the robot shape and decided against the rocket and sailboat shapes.Reviewers say they are too big for kids, the ones who would most enjoy the fun shapes, and the sticks were too small, a health concern if the kids were to slip while sipping.

Over the past few years, the media, parents, and other consumers have raised concerns about the dangers of chemicals in plastic.Plasticizers,chemicals used to make plastics strong yet flexible, aren't as big of a health risk as they've been made out to be.The biggest concern has been about hormones.Most of the pop molds we cover areBPA-free, and many manufacturers have stopped using it in products for children.It is likely that other plasticizers pose more risk.The European Food Safety Authority conducted a large-scale risk assessment and found that there was no threat to young children.

The research isn't conclusive on which plasticizers cause harm and how much.This may be irrelevant when it comes to pop molds.It can be done with some types of plasticizers, but it can take a long time.According to Neal Langerman, principal scientist and owner of the consulting firm Advanced Chemical Safety, it's when companies do accelerated aging studies on such materials, subjecting the plastic to the equivalent of 5 to 6 years' worth of use.According to the available data, this is less harmful than it would be.I want to know what will happen if I leave it in the freezer for 45 days.Since chemical reactions take longer when cold, that slows everything down.Langerman said that he was not worried about plasticizers.Plastic popsicle molds are not going to pose a risk to anyone.

Silicone is likely to be even safer than plastic.Silicone is considered to be inert because it is one of the strongest chemical bonds there is.This makes up sand and is a rock.Silicone can be safely used as food packaging according to the FDA.Silicone is one of the most studied materials in the world and has been shown to be resistant to both hot and cold.

There are 22BPA-free popsicle molds for making all kinds of delicious homemade popsicles.

When illness or injury keeps everyone home, a comfy room and bed are the starting point for needed rest.Chicken soup and a good movie can help.

It doesn't have to be a drag if you're spending summer in and around your home.

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