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Learn how to make your very own veganized Pistachio Ice Cream using only 5 ingredients. It’s oh so delicious, more-ish and super creamy, you won’t believe it’s a homemade recipe and not store brought.
Who doesn’t love some homemade ice cream? I love making my own ice cream from scratch and it was a bonus to havea spare bag of pistachios laying around in the pantry for quite some time which I just had to put to good use.
This vegan pistachio ice cream, is uber tasty and made with a handful of common ingredients (if you’e into clean eating). Even your non plant based friends won’t know it contains no dairy.
Pistachios and cashews are probably my favourite nuts of them all. Just ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you that I always have any of the aforementioned to hand.
One of my greatest pistachio experiences was when I went to the UAE and brought a sack full of nuts and dates for dirt cheap.
My love and fondness for pistachios has now spilled over to the world of desserts and homemade milk too. I made this ice cream several times, fine tuning and tweaking accordingly despite how expensive pistachio nuts are.
Since publishing this recipe I have changed from using almond to full fat coconut milk which yields more creaminess.
There’s nothing worse than eyeballing your favourite ice cream in the supermarkets and not being able to buy it because it’s not dairy free, bummer I know!
Conventional vs homemade vegan ice cream
I’ve always wondered what makes commercial ice cream so delicious. The main ingredients are it’s a mixture of water, cream, milk, protein, air, flavouring (vanilla, strawberry etc..).
Stabilisers such as gum and eggs can be used to pasteurize and homogenize the ice cream.
There’s a lot of work that goes into store brought ice cream with plenty to consider. When replicating homemade, more specifically vegan ice cream.
You want it to be freezer friendly, creamy and delicious without depending on milk, eggs or cream.
De-shelling stubborn pistachios
In the worst case scenario if you find yourself saddle down with some shelled pistachio. Here is a quick hack to de-shell them.
- Start by de-shelling a few nuts and leaving some of the shells to the side
- Grab another pistachio in your hand with the shell intact.
- Use the other hand along with half a shell to pluck open any stubborn nuts.
Achieving that creamy texture
As vegan ice cream doesn’t have any cream, it’s important to use some full fat. My go to now is full fat coconut milk along with the solids (chilled parts).
The solids are another component to achieving the creaminess needed but some people use;
- Frozen bananas
- Soak cashew nuts
- Coconut Condensed Milk (for uber sweetness and creaminess too)
These are just some other options that you can substitute and/or include if you wish.
Ingredients you will need
- Pistachio nuts: Use nuts that are de-shelled as they are less time consuming and more handy to work with.I only had pistachio with the shells on when I made the recipe.
- Coconut milk: You want milk that is on the thicker side full fat not light milk
- Coconut milk solids: The solids are needed, use full fat milk not homemade with no additional ingredients.
- Coconut sugar: This is my favourite sweetener, it has the most amazing butterscotch taste to it. If you are keto them use a zero calorie sweetener.
Reason to make this ice cream
- It’s creamy and delicious
- Vegan friendly
- Great if you’re dairy free due to being lactose intolerant
- Paleo approved and you can tailor it to be keto friendly
- Suitable for a high fat lifestyle
How to make vegan pistachio ice cream
- Put your ice cream maker bowl in the freezer and make sure it is fully frozen before proceeding with the recipe unless you are leaving the nuts to soak overnight.
- Place the pistachio nuts in a large bowl with enough luke warm water to cover it and soak overnight or for several hours. (picture 1)
- Place the pistachio nuts, coconut sugar and coconut milk into a blender and blitz into a smooth consistency. (picture 2-3)
- If you don’t own a high speed blender (i.e vitamix , Ninja or blend tech), you may need to strain the liquid in a cheesecloth or through a sieve to eliminate any grittyness.
- Pour the liquid into a bowl and stir in the coconut solids (or thicker part of a can of chilled coconut milk) (picture 4)
- Set aside and refrigerate overnight or 2-3 hours if you can’t wait and want to fast track things.
- Set up your ice cream maker with the frozen bowl etc…
- Switch on the machine and slowly pour in the liquid contents then allow it to churn into soft ice cream (the time it takes depends on the model).(picture 5)
- Pour the soft ice cream into a ice cream container (I lined mine with parchment paper to omit freezer burn)(picture 6)
- Leave to set in the freezer for 1-2 hours Before serving.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I double the batch of this recipe?
It should work fine, as long as the ingredients ratio is still the same.
Can I freeze the ice cream for longer than the time stated or overnight?
Yes, you can freeze the ice cream for several hours or overnight. It’s quite firm when frozen so simply allow it to thaw out somewhat before serving.
Is there a way to avoid freezer burn?
You can do a few things to keep freezer burn at bay. For example lining your container with parchment paper. Also make sure the ice cream is covered.
If you don’t have a lid for your container or even if you use a loaf pan to store the ice cream make sure it’s covered with saran wrap/cling film.
How long does the ice cream hold up in the freezer?
For best results I would advise consuming your ice cream within 5 days or making it.
Notes and tips
- Make sure to place the container for your ice cream maker in the freezer before hand.
- A high speed blender like a Vitamix, Blend Tec or Ninja will pulverise the nuts so straining isn’t required
- If serving this in the evening it’s better to make the ice cream in the morning and allow it to set throughout the day
- The coconut solids is the thicker part of the coconut milk. If you place a can of coconut milk in the refrigerator to chill it should firm up and become solid. This is the part of the milk that you need and the clear water can be used in a smoothie or drink.
- You can add a small frozen banana, 1 avocado or ½ cup of soaked nuts if you want. Add any of the aforementioned to the blender
- I used ½ cup of coconut sugar which results in a subtle sweetness. If you have an extra sweet tooth then add more. Just do a taste test once everything is in liquid form.
- Coconut condensed milk can be used in place of coconut sugar if you want an even sweeter creamy taste
- Use erythritol for a keto option
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