Made in the Northwest: Fannie’s Ice Pops
SPOKANE, Wash. – Like a lot of moms, Mandolyn Hume wanted a more healthy option for her kids than ice cream or popsicles.
“We started just freezing our smoothies from the morning,” explained Hume, the owner and creator of Fannie’s Ice Pops. “But then, we kind of got more into it and started exploring flavors.”
And when her kids sold the ice pops at a garage sale, Hume recalls, “All these people were saying, ‘You should really sell these. These are really great.'”
And that’s how Fannie’s Ice Pops was started. It’s named after Hume’s great grandmother.
“So the whole idea behind it is to get produce from the farmers. So that farm to freezer type idea.”
And she says she uses local and organic fruit as much as possible.
“So I get some from farmers’ markets, sometimes I go pick it.”
Hume makes the ice pops in the kitchen at Old European restaurant in N. Spokane.
“They take ice pops for payment sometimes,” she joked.
Making the ice pops is a very simple process. After cleaning the fruit, it’s blended in fairly large amounts. Then, Hume makes a simple syrup of half water and half sugar, cooking it over a burner, often with herbs.
“Some have rosemary, some have lavender, some have basil, some have mint,” she said. “And it’s almost like a steeping tea.”
The syrup and fruit is mixed together and fresh squeezed lemon is added for a little extra zest. Then, it’s poured into specially designed trays.
“You just pour it in there, level it out and then you put the ice pop sticks in all at once, which is super handy.”
And after 20-30 minutes of freezing, a batch of 88 ice pops is ready to be sealed in individual plastic wrappers, each with Fannie’s custom label.
Fannie’s Ice Pops is now in its eighth year in business and hoping to bounce back after last summer’s COVID-19 shutdown. It’s become a staple at local farmers’ markets and now supplies ice pops for all kinds of events, such as private business events and weddings. You can also find the ice pops at a growing numbers of local stores, including My Fresh Basket, Rocket Market and Sweet Peaks Ice Cream.
And while Hume says she doesn’t want Fannie’s to grow too big, she admits it’s becoming too much for one person to handle.
“I’m going to need to bring on just more help and have people just so I can keep up with production.”
And with the summer months ahead, demand for these locally made ice pops isn’t going down anytime soon.
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