This summer, treat yourself to a delightful homemade vanilla ice cream that is sure to please your taste buds. With its creamy texture and refreshing flavor, this no-cook recipe is incredibly easy to make. At our house, homemade ice cream is a cherished tradition, especially during the 4th of July festivities. It’s a staple in our family, and we can’t imagine a summer without it!
Easy, No-Cook Homemade Ice Cream Recipe
There are two types of homemade ice cream recipes—those that require cooking with eggs and those that don’t. Personally, I prefer the no-egg, no-cook version as it is much simpler and quicker to prepare. Some may argue that the egg recipe results in a more custard-like taste, but I find this recipe to be just as delicious. The ice cream has a rich vanilla flavor and a smooth, creamy texture.
All you need is a few minutes to mix the ingredients in a large bowl before transferring the mixture to your ice cream freezer. As someone who appreciates both taste and convenience, this recipe hits all the right notes!
Ice cream mix-in ideas
When it comes to personalizing your ice cream, the possibilities are endless. My kids love adding mix-ins to their ice cream, and it’s also a great option to offer guests or at parties. You don’t have to mix them into the entire batch—simply provide different options, and everyone can add what they like! Remember to mix in the extras after the ice cream is finished in the ice cream freezer.
Here are some mix-in ideas to get you started:
- Coconut, chocolate chips, pecans with a swirl of caramel
- Andes mints or chopped mint Oreos
- Chopped Oreos
- Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups
- Fresh fruit such as strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, or peaches
- Chopped candy bars—the choice is yours! Butterfinger and Snickers are among our favorites
- Chopped pretzels
- Mini marshmallows
Alternatively, you can elevate your ice cream with the BEST Hot Fudge EVER. With just four ingredients and ten minutes, you’ll have a game-changing topping. If you’re feeling fancy, try my Caramel Pecan Sauce—it pairs perfectly with the simplicity of vanilla ice cream. However, don’t hesitate to enjoy this ice cream plain—it’s incredible on its own!
Ice cream in a bag…fun for kids
For a fun and interactive ice cream-making experience, try making ice cream in a bag. No ice cream freezer is required! If you’re making it for multiple kids, I recommend using 1/4 of the recipe per child. Each person making the ice cream will need a sandwich bag and a quart-size bag, or a quart-size bag and a gallon-size bag (one smaller, one larger).
Here’s how to do it:
- Pour some of the ice cream mixture into the smaller bag, filling it no more than halfway.
- Seal the smaller bag tightly, ensuring all the air is squeezed out.
- Place the smaller bag inside the larger one, and add crushed ice and rock salt (this helps freeze the ice cream).
- Let the kids roll, squish, and move the bag until the ice cream freezes. Add more ice and salt as needed.
- Once it’s done, each child will have their own individual serving! They can even add their desired mix-ins to their bag and enjoy the ice cream with a spoon.
This activity is not only delicious but also a great way to spend a summer day!
Ingredients you’ll need…
You’ll be pleased to know that this easy ice cream recipe requires just a few simple ingredients. Most of them are likely already in your kitchen. Throughout the summer, I make sure to keep these ingredients on hand so we can whip up a batch of ice cream whenever we want. Whether we have guests over or simply want to indulge ourselves, homemade ice cream is always a hit!
- Heavy cream
- Half and half
- Pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean
For creamier ice cream…
Notice that this recipe calls for heavy cream and half and half. These ingredients have a higher fat content, with heavy cream having the highest. The fat content is what gives the ice cream its creamy consistency. While you can substitute whole milk or 2% milk for the half and half, bear in mind that the resulting ice cream will be less creamy. Additionally, using lower-fat dairy alternatives may result in a slightly icier texture after the ice cream has been stored in the freezer. Refrigerating the ice cream mixture before freezing it also helps it freeze faster and reduces ice crystallization.
How to store homemade ice cream
To keep your homemade ice cream fresh and delicious, follow these storage tips:
- Use an airtight, freezer-safe container.
- Place a layer of plastic wrap over the ice cream before adding the lid. This helps prevent iciness.
- Store the ice cream in the back of the freezer rather than on the side of the door. Keeping it closer to the freezer opening can lead to temperature fluctuations and affect the quality.
- Your freezer should be set at least at 0 degrees Fahrenheit, as recommended for food safety. Maintaining a consistent temperature will help preserve your ice cream in the best possible condition.
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More Yummy Recipes
If you enjoyed this homemade ice cream recipe, you’ll love these other tasty treats:
- Fresh Peach Crisp
- Easy No-Bake Homemade Granola Bars
- Cinnamon Sugar Muffins
- Chocolate Brownies with Hershey’s Syrup
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