How to Make Ice Cream Without an Ice Cream Maker

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Video Instant pot ice cream

This post shares an easy tutorial for how to make homemade ice cream without an ice cream maker using a blender and your freezer. This is called the Freezer Method and it can be used for both dairy ice cream and vegan ice cream.

peach ice cream served in bowls with spoons

In the heat of summer, I’ve got you covered with this easy post on how to make ice cream without an ice cream maker, using a blender and your freezer instead.

I get it. You don’t need another kitchen appliance that you don’t use that often. An ice cream machine is kind of silly, anyway, all it does is stir up your ice cream ingredients in a cold bowl. You can do that yourself and I’ll show you how!

Ice Cream Recipes

You can literally make any flavor of ice cream your heart desires at home. The sky is the limit when it comes to flavors. I especially love using fresh fruits to flavor homemade ice cream.

Since I don’t eat dairy for health reasons, I’ve made quite a few dairy-free, vegan ice creams over the years. Some of my favorites include:

  • Peach Ice Cream
  • Pumpkin Ice Cream
  • Mango Ice Cream
  • Strawberry & Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Don’t miss my round-up of the best vegan ice cream recipes!!!

You might also want to check out my guide for How to Make Vitamix Sorbet.

Recipe Steps

For this tutorial, I’m showing how easy it is to make ice cream at home without an ice cream maker. You will need a blender or a food processor to make your ice cream mixture. Since I don’t use dairy in my recipes, I almost always use full-fat canned coconut milk as the creamy, dairy-free base of my homemade ice creams.

But, you can also use this tutorial to make regular dairy ice cream as well. Either way, once you’ve decided on a recipe, this is how you make ice cream without an ice cream machine.

Step One

Once you blend your ice cream mixture, the next step is to pour the mixture into a freezer-safe bowl.

ice cream mixture in a bowl

Step Two

Since you won’t be using a machine to churn the mixture, this is the part that requires some handiwork. You’ll be using a large fork to break up any of the ice crystals over the next 4 hours.

Don’t worry, you only need to do it about 4 separate times, waiting 45 minutes between.

Step Three

Over the course of the four hours, the ice cream will start to develop ice crystals. Your job is to break those up and help keep the mixture from freezing into an ice cube.

frozen ice cream in a bowl

I’ve made homemade ice cream with and without a machine, and the final texture is fairly similar.


ice cream in a container with an ice cream scooper

I hope you make this recipe! If you do, please leave a comment and a starred review below.

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