Best Birthday Cake Ice Cream

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Video Best birthday cake ice cream

Birthday Cake Ice Cream is an ultra-creamy homemade ice cream with a rich, buttery vanilla flavor. Pieces of real cake and rainbow sprinkles make it a super fun ice cream too.

This recipe for Birthday Cake Ice Cream is a French style, custard-based ice cream, made in an ice cream maker. Use gluten free cake to make it gluten free.

It’s like the very best combination of birthday cake and a sprinkled ice cream cone. Everyone loves birthday cake ice cream!

a clear glass ice cream dish filled with scoops of birthday cake ice cream with sprinkles. a small bowl of sprinkles is in the foreground.

Birthday cake ice cream is one of my favorite new ice cream recipes. It’s flavorful and nicely textured with pieces of cake, and delicious in a dish or loaded in to an ice cream cone.

It also makes for an excellent ice cream cake.

This recipe doesn’t last long in my house! The kids absolutely love it, and they usually add extra sprinkles to their bowls.

They like it when I make this no-churn Sprinkles Ice Cream too. This bubblegum ice cream is also fun.

Serve this for the next birthday in your family, or make it “just-because” and eat ice cream like it’s your birthday every day!

For another cake-tastic ice cream recipe, make Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream.

Why you’re going to love this Birthday Cake Ice Cream Recipe

Classic Vanilla Cake Flavor – Cake batter extract, vanilla extract and pieces of real cake give this recipe a buttery, sweet flavor that is irresistible.

Traditional Custard Base – This ice cream recipe starts with an egg yolk custard base. Taking the time to make a French style ice cream from scratch is well worth the super creamy and rich texture.

Simple Step By Step Instructions – French style ice cream recipes are a bit more complicated to make that some other recipes, but I’m going to give you easy to follow instructions with photos and extra tips so that you will have ice cream success.

It has Sprinkles! Everything is better with sprinkles on it.

top down view of the ingredients needed to make birthday cake ice cream including egg yolks, cream, sprinkles, and cupcakes.

Ingredients in Homemade Birthday Cake Ice Cream

Egg Yolks – These create the base for our ice cream custard. We’ll gently heat the egg yolks to pasteurize them, but you can also purchase pasteurized eggs if you prefer.

Granulated Sugar – Any good ice cream will have a good amount of sugar in it, both for sweetness and texture.

Whole Milk – A mix of both heavy cream and whole milk creates the perfect ice cream texture.

Heavy Cream – A mix of both heavy cream and whole milk is what gives us the perfect creamy texture.

Vanilla Extract – Vanilla is a must for a delicious cake batter ice cream. Use a good quality, pure vanilla extract for best flavor.

Cake Batter Extract – This flavoring can be found in most grocery stores, or in the baking aisle of your local craft store.

It’s basically a flavor compound that combines buttery notes with vanilla and sometimes nutty flavors too. (please check ingredients if you have nut allergies)

Cake – Use a baked vanilla cake to create cake crumbles to add to your birthday cake ice cream. A cake you bake yourself, or store-bought cake or cupcakes work just fine.

You can use gluten free vanilla cake to make this gluten free.

Sprinkles – Rainbow jimmies are the perfect addition. They add an air of celebration to the recipe.

Photo collage showing 8 steps needed to make birthday cake ice cream

How to make Birthday Cake Ice Cream from scratch

  1. Whisk together egg yolks and granulated sugar until smooth and pale yellow in color.
  2. Add the milk to a saucepan over medium heat. Bring the milk to a simmer and then remove it from the heat before it boils.
  3. Temper the eggs by adding ½ cup of the hot milk to the egg and sugar mixture, whisk constantly until combined. Then add the tempered egg mixture back into the saucepan with the remaining hot milk.
  4. Heat the saucepan on low. Stirring constantly, heat until the base has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. This should take a few minutes.
  5. Strain the mixture into a bowl to remove any pieces of egg that might have cooked. Add the heavy cream, vanilla extract, and cake batter extract and stir to combine.
  6. Cover the bowl, pressing plastic wrap to the surface of the ice cream base. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or until cold.
  7. Churn the ice cream in the chilled bowl of your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions until it is thick and the consistency of soft serve ice cream. In the last two minutes, add the crumbled cake and rainbow sprinkles, reserving a tablespoon of sprinkles for later.
  8. Spoon the ice cream into a shallow container or loaf pan. Top with remaining sprinkles. Press plastic wrap or wax paper to the surface of the ice cream and freeze for at least four hours, until solid. Let sit at room temperature for five minutes before serving.

These numbered steps match the numbered photos above and are for illustration purposes.

For the complete list of ingredients and instructions, please see the recipe below.

a metal ice cream scoop with a yellow handle, scooping ice cream with sprinkles in it.

How to store Birthday Cake Ice Cream

Store this Birthday Cake Ice Cream in the freezer in an airtight container (we really like these reusable ice cream containers) with a piece of parchment paper or wax paper pressed on top for up to one month.

Tips for making this Birthday Cake Ice Cream

Cake Batter Extract – if you can’t find this extract, use butter extract instead. Butter is the flavor in this recipe that makes the ice cream taste like cake.

Use the Icing – if you bought a cake or cupcakes with white or pastel frosting, add that into your ice cream too! Darker colored frostings will dye your ice cream, so I’d avoid adding those.

Use quality ingredients – When making homemade ice cream, you’ll want to make sure you are using high quality ingredients for the best outcome.

Chill out – If possible, always start with chilled ingredients. This is important for homemade no-churn ice cream recipes and ice cream maker recipes.

Don’t skimp on the fat – High fat milks and creams are essential when making homemade ice cream. Opting for a low-fat option often leads to icy ice creams and inconsistency in the texture.

Don’t go crazy with the add-ins – If you’re adding in additional ingredients, pick one or two and make sure they are chopped into pieces no larger than a blueberry or pea.

Don’t skimp on the sugar – Sugar not only adds sweetness to homemade ice creams, it also helps with the texture. Sugar is essential for the creamy texture in ice cream.

Closeup view of a scoop of birthday cake ice cream with rainbow jimmies in a glass bowl.

No Churn Birthday Cake Ice Cream Directions

Chill a shallow container or a loaf pan in the freezer while you mix the ice cream ingredients.

Pour the ice cream mixture into the prepared pan and freeze for 3-4 hours. Stir the ice cream every 30 minutes for the first 2 hours to help add air. This will help create a creamy, smooth texture.

Add the cake pieces to the ice cream mixture during the last time you mix it, to allow them to keep their texture and shape.

Birthday Cake Ice Cream Add-ins

This recipe for birthday cake ice cream already has crumbled cake pieces and rainbow sprinkles in it, so what else can you add?

Try a little bit of white chocolate. Shaved or chopped white chocolate will add additional sweetness that will be really delicious.

Crushed cookies. Sugar cookies or shortbread cookies can be used to changethe texture of the ice cream a bit while still giving the flavor of vanilla cake.

A Flavor Swirl. Swirl in some store bought cake frosting, caramel ice cream topping, or whipped topping right before the final freezing step to make this recipe extra sweet.

a metal ice cream scoop with a yellow handle, scooping ice cream with sprinkles in it. Text at the bottom of the photo reads, Homemade birthday cake Ice Cream Recipe

What kind of sprinkles should I use for birthday cake ice cream?

It’s important to choose a sprinkle that won’t bleed colors in your ice cream. When given a choice between rainbow “jimmies” or the smaller, round nonpareils, you should choose the jimmies.

Nonpariels always bleed because of the way they are coated with color, and will make your ice cream muddy looking.

You can also use shaped sprinkles (tiny hearts, animals, or other themes) as long as they appear that they won’t bleed. I prefer the texture of regular classic rainbow sprinkles in ice cream though.

What kind of cake can I use?

Vanilla cake is traditional, and in this recipe, you can use a homemade cake, or a small cake or cupcakes that you buy at the grocery store. For a different flavor, chocolate cake can be used too.

Two cupcakes will give you the perfect amount of cake for birthday cake ice cream.

A boxed cake mix is an easy way to get fresh cake pieces for homemade birthday cake icing. Cut up as much as you need for the recipe, and enjoy the rest for dessert while you’re waiting for the ice cream to set.

a metal ice cream scoop with a yellow handle, scooping ice cream with sprinkles in it. Text at the bottom of the photo reads, Homemade birthday cake Ice Cream Recipe

Is Birthday Cake Ice Cream the Same as Cake Batter Ice Cream?

The two titles are often used interchangeably. Birthday cake ice cream recipes, like this one are normally going to have pieces of cake in them, while cake batter ice cream recipes will often have more butter flavor and less add ins. Some of them also include dry cake mix in the ice cream.

More Homemade Ice Cream Recipes

  • Banoffee Pie Ice Cream
  • Black Raspberry Ice Cream
  • Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream

Here are some of our favorite ice cream making things:

  • Cuisinart 2QT Ice Cream Maker – Works with ice cream, sorbets, and frozen yogurt.
  • Loaf Pan – You can use any 9 x 13 loaf pan or a shallow pan, but we like this one.
  • Ice Cream Scoop – Make sure you have a good ice cream scoop. This is one of our favorites.
  • Ice Cream Bowls – You can use any bowl, but we think these are fun.
  • Ice Cream Containers – We love keeping a couple of ice cream containers on hand for when we make homemade ice cream.

Note: Each of these links will take you to the exact product on Amazon. As an Amazon associate, I earn a little from each qualifying purchase.

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