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Dessert is easy when you have a ready collection of homemade ice cream with condensed milk recipes on hand. When I discovered how easy it was to make ice cream using sweetened condensed milk, I immediately began experimenting with different variations.
I’ve tried half a dozen varieties and I love them all. Read on to find descriptions and links to each recipe, plus tips to create your own variations.
What Does Condensed Milk Do in Ice Cream?
Sweetened condensed milk is the secret ingredient that makes it easy to make ice cream without an ice cream maker. Sweetened condensed milk is regular cow’s milk that has had most of the water cooked out of it to make it thicker and creamier than regular milk.
And unlike evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk has added sugar to prolong its shelf life, which gives it the added benefit of creating a delicious sweet ice cream!
Even better, the consistency and texture of sweetened condensed milk helps create soft, scoopable ice cream since the high sugar content prevents it from freezing solid.
What You Need for Sweetened Condensed Milk Ice Cream
The beauty of sweetened condensed milk ice cream is that you can so easily create very different versions by changing just a couple of ingredients.
You already know the main ingredient — sweetened condensed milk. This gives the ice cream all the sweetness it needs.
The sweetened condensed milk also eliminates one of the most time-consuming steps in making traditional ice cream. The sweetened condensed milk takes the place of the custard base that usually involves cooking a mixture of cream, sugar and eggs.
The other ingredient you need for homemade no-churn ice cream is heavy whipping cream. This is the ingredient that will keep the ice cream from being too dense.
The best part of sweetened condensed milk ice cream is that not only do you get to skip the cooking step, you also get to skip the churning step. So, it’s a one-step, two-ingredient dessert and it tastes AMAZING.
How to Make Homemade Ice Cream With Condensed Milk
To make a very basic vanilla ice cream, you’ll need:
- 2 cups cold heavy whipping cream
- 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Place the whipping cream in a large bowl and using a mixer or whisk (if you want a good arm workout) to beat it until thickened. The cream should form soft peaks and stick to the beaters.
Next, fold in the sweetened condensed milk and vanilla extract, stirring gently until smooth.
If you want to cut back on the fat and calories, you can use whole milk instead of heavy cream. If you do, combine all the ingredients (rather than beating the milk alone) and mix well until thickened. The ice cream will have a slightly less creamy texture but will still be delicious.
One teaspoon of vanilla extract won’t give you a strong vanilla flavor so feel free to increase it to one tablespoon if you want to amp up the flavor. You can also swap in a different extract (e.g. mint, maple or root beer) to change the flavor.
Under no circumstances should you substitute evaporated milk for the sweetened condensed milk!
How to Create Your Own Variations
Sweetened condensed milk ice cream is so easy to flavor. Add some cocoa powder to make chocolate ice cream.
Add in your favorite candies or fruits. Most of my variations were inspired by my favorite candy bars and fruits.
Whether you add fresh fruit, pie filling, or fruit syrups, you can easily infuse homemade ice cream with your favorite fruit flavors.
Likewise, you can add crushed candy bars, small candy bits, or ingredients in your favorite desserts to your sweetened condensed milk ice cream to get a delicious combination.
Add In Suggestions:
- Berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries)
- Canned fruit (candied cherries, sliced peaches, pineapple tidbits, mandarin orange slices)
- Dried fruit (mango, raisins, apricots, cranberries)
- Chocolate chips
- Candy bars
- Chocolate syrup
- Caramel syrup
- Nuts (walnuts, pecans, pistachios, macadamia nuts, hazelnuts, peanuts)
Aside from a freezer, which is really the only piece of equipment you MUST have to make ice cream, here are some other tools that will help:
- Stand mixer or hand mixer (though you can also use a whisk or even a blender)
- Ice cream scoop
- Freezer-safe container(s)
- Ice cream bowls or dishes
Sweetened Condensed Milk Ice Cream Recipes
Below you will find recipes for all the variations I’ve tried. These were all inspired by some of my family’s favorite foods and we definitely weren’t disappointed with the results when they were combined with ice cream!
Classic Flavor Combinations
My family already had some favorite ice cream flavors so we recreated them as homemade versions. First up was this Easy Homemade Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream.
My husband’s favorite is this Easy Homemade Mint Chip Ice Cream.
I love tropical flavors so my favorite is this Homemade Tropical Ice Cream.
And since my kids love peppermint, we discovered the Best Peppermint Ice Cream.
In a bout of nostalgia, I made this No-Churn Pistachio Ice Cream, which was my dad’s favorite flavor.
Fruit-Based Ice Cream Recipes
Here are the homemade ice creams I’ve made that were inspired by my favorite fruits.
I absolutely LOVE berries so I was excited to see how well they worked in sweetened condensed milk ice cream. I wasn’t disappointed when I made this Homemade No-Churn Berry Ice Cream.
The berries were a hard sell for a few of my kids though so I picked one (raspberries) and added some chocolate to win them over with this Easy Homemade Chocolate Chunk Raspberry Ice Cream.
My husband loves peaches as much as I love berries, so he preferred this Easy Peach Ice Cream.
I also love the flavor and color combination of lemons and blueberries and they work together beautifully in this Easy Homemade Lemon Blueberry Ice Cream.
We use a lot of maraschino cherries in my house for various recipes so they inspired a Homemade Candied Cherry Ice Cream.
Candy-Based Ice Cream Recipes
When I think of candy, I automatically picture candy bars so my first candy-inspired ice cream recipe was this simple chocolate ice cream recipe with chocolate chunks.
My favorite candy bar is Almond Joy so I combined all of those great flavors (chocolate, coconut, and almonds) in this Easy Homemade Almond Joy Ice Cream.
Not technically candy, one of my kids’ favorite ice cream versions is this Homemade Bubble Gum Ice Cream.
Cookie-Based Ice Cream Recipes
I’m a cookie fanatic so it was only natural to combine my favorite dessert with ice cream. We started with the classic cookie we almost always have in the pantry — Oreo cookies to create this No-Churn Oreo Ice Cream.
I’m also a big fan of Nutter Butters which is how we ended up with this tasty Easy Homemade Nutter Butter Ice Cream.
And finally, with a throwback to my favorite childhood TV show, Sesame Street, I had to make a Homemade Cookie Monster Ice Cream.
Pie Inspired Ice Cream Recipes
In keeping with the idea of combining other desserts with ice cream, we eventually got to pies. We had to, of course, try a No-Churn Apple Pie Ice Cream.
Next up was this Pumpkin Pecan Ice Cream.