Homemade Hot & Cold Packs

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Things You'll Need

  • Men's large white sock
  • Long grain rice
  • Thread
  • Sewing machine
  • 1/2 yard cotton fabric
  • Scissors

Homemade hot and cold packs can be made from a variety of materials. For the most comfort, make the hot and cold pack from soft cotton or flannel. Hot and cold packs are generally filled with either rice, beans or dried corn. You may also add dried herbs or fragrant essential oils for soothing comfort and aroma. You should be able to make a hot and cold pack with things you already have around your home. Otherwise look for fabric remnants in a fabric or craft store.

Fill the men's sock with uncooked, white long grain rice. Do not over pack the sock, leave enough room for the rice to move around slightly.

Sew up the opening of the sock on the sewing machine. Use small stitching to make sure the rice does not escape.

Cut out enough cotton fabric to form a sleeve for your rice-filled sock. Fold the fabric with the right sides together. Lay the sock on top of the fabric, and cut around the edges of the sock, allowing 2 inches around the edge for a seam allowance. Form a rectangle shape as you are cutting, using straight lines.

With the right sides together, sew two long edges and one short end of the fabric; use a 1-inch seam allowance. Leave one end of the sleeve open. Fold over the edges of the open end 1/2 inch and hem with the sewing machine.

Turn the fabric right side out, and insert the rice-filled sock into the fabric sleeve.


  • You can also make hot and cold packs using dried corn or beans. Heat the rice pack in the microwave for between 1 and 2 minutes for a hot pack. Place in the freezer for about 5 to 10 minutes for use as a cold pack. Hot and cold packs can also be made from small towels, pillowcases or fabric napkins for a range of sizes and applications.


  • Avoid using quick cooking or instant rice as it may catch on fire when heating the rice pack in the microwave. Take care not to overheat the rice pack in the microwave as this could cause skin irritation and burning.