Ice Cream/Frozen Desserts

32 Best Ice Cream Recipes—Come Rain or Shine

Will it be one scoop or two?

May  5, 2022
Photo by Bobbi Lin

There was a very wonderful time in my life when I ate ice cream five times a week, generally store-bought but occasionally homemade. When I ran out of Häagen-Dazs or Ben & Jerry’s, I turned to my clunky-yet-lovable Cuisinart to help me churn my own vanilla ice cream with cookie dough chunks. It was times like those that I wished I had this list—a roundup of our very best ice cream flavors, from traditional to no-churn methods, plus some sherbet and sorbet recipes for good measure.

Our Coolest Ice Cream Recipes

1. No-Churn Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

We love an ice cream recipe that ditches the equipment altogether. Even with no churning, this is potentially the creamiest ice cream recipe ever.

2. Just-the-Best Vanilla Ice Cream

The only vanilla ice cream recipe you’ll ever need—you can use pure vanilla extract or the seeds from a whole vanilla pod for the most intense flavor.

3. Fresh Mint Chip Ice Cream

We love Alice Medrich’s choice to skip the peppermint extract in favor of ½ cup of fresh mint leaves, which makes the flavor so much brighter and, well, fresher.

4. No-Churn Chocolate Ice Cream

This egg-free ice cream uses a combination of heavy cream and sweetened condensed milk for a super creamy frozen dessert. The chocolate flavor is all thanks to cocoa powder, rather than chopped chocolate.

5. Pandan Ice Cream

You only need four ingredients to make this pandan-infused ice cream: pandan leaves, coconut water, sweetened condensed milk, and heavy cream. If you can’t find them, try using fresh lemongrass with a little bit of vanilla extract (this will mimic the grassy, sweet flavor of fresh pandan).

6. No-Churn Butter Pecan Ice Cream

To recreate this old-fashioned flavor, toast pecans in a little bit of butter to bring out their nutty flavor. Then, combine sweetened condensed milk with fresh whipped cream (plus a little bit of browned butter) for an easy no-churn ice cream (no special equipment needed).

7. Peaches & Sour Cream Ice Cream

This tangy take on peaches-and-cream ice cream uses sour cream instead of heavy cream, egg yolks, or condensed milk. Because sour cream is so rich and thick, it has enough body to hold its own.

8. Dori Sanders’ No-Churn Fresh Lemon Ice Cream

Equal parts heavy cream and whole milk form the base for this citrusy ice cream—it’s all we want to eat this summer.

9. Frozen Custard

Our go-to recipe for old-fashioned frozen custard—the trick is using a lot of egg yolks, which is what distinguishes this rich treat from traditional ice cream.

10. No-Churn Avocado Ice Cream With Lime & Coconut

Avocado is super creamy and fatty, so when it is blended, it gives the mixture so much body. You’ll also need a ripe mango, coconut milk, sweetened condensed milk, and the zest and juice of a lime. This churned version is also ridiculously delicious.

11. No-Churn Tortilla Chip Ice Cream

There are tortilla chips (yes, real salted tortilla chips) in both the ice cream and tortilla crunch swirl. If you love a salty-sweet combination, this subtle corn flavor is for you.

12. Browned Butter Pecan Ice Cream

Browning butter (aka simmering it until the milk solids crystallize) is the missing piece of the puzzle in this pecan ice cream.

13. Oatmeal Ice Cream With Toasted Walnuts

Breakfast for dessert? Yes please! To make this ice cream, start by roasting rolled oats and walnuts in the oven—doing so will bring out the nutty flavor of both. Then add them to a pot of warm milk to infuse.

14. No-Churn Whiskey Ice Cream

This no-cook, no-church ice cream turns to Scotch whiskey for its malty flavor. A little goes a long way—you only need one tablespoon, but the “deep, musky notes of vanilla bean perfumes everything like buttery caramel,” says recipe developer Eric Kim.

15. Sicilian-Style Ice Cream

Instead of egg yolks, cornstarch thickens this simple ice cream, yielding a lovely chewy texture. Try contrasting the simple scoop with cocoa nibs, a drizzle of olive oil, or hot fudge sauce.

16. Brown Butter Cinnamon Ice Cream

Serve a scoop of this spiced ice cream with a slice of warm apple pie and thank us later.

17. Banana Cajeta Ice Cream

This goat milk–based ice is flavored with banana and a swirl of sweet, caramelized syrup.

18. Cereal Milk Ice Cream

Inspired by Milk Bar’s viral ice cream flavor, this recipe uses cornflakes to infuse the milk and cream mixture.

19. Peach Pie Ice Cream

Would it be too much to serve this peach ice cream with a slice of stone fruit pie? Possibly, but we might just do it anyway.

20. Nigella Lawson's One-Step, No-Churn Coffee Ice Cream

A duo of espresso powder and coffee liqueur make a delicious caffeinated scoop.

21. Honeycomb Ice Cream

Making homemade honeycomb candy is a little bit more work. But the payoff is worth it (promise).

22. Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream

I scream, you scream, we all scream for cookie dough ice cream. This flavor is a classic for a reason and now, we’re sharing this decadent recipe so that you can make it at home.

23. No-Churn Pumpkin Ice Cream

Just because the weather has cooled down doesn’t mean that you need to give up on ice cream until next summer. We’ll be scooping this cozy flavor all fall long.

24. Milk Chocolate Ice Cream With Salted Cashew Brittle

One of my favorite sweet snacks of all time is cashew chocolate bark, so I cannot wait to make this frozen twist.

25. Corn Ice Cream

Fresh corn (four ears, in fact) are used to infuse a milk and cream mixture. The kernels steep for at least an hour before straining and blending.

Sorbet & Sherbet Recipes

26. Strawberry Sorbet From The River Café

For a non-dairy scoop, make this three-ingredient sorbet using just sugar, lemon juice, and two pounds (!) of fresh strawberries.

27. Peach & Lemon Sorbet From The River Café

Another three-ingredient sorbet recipe for the win: This time, we’re using fresh peaches, plus lemon juice and sugar.

28. David Lebovitz's Chocolate Sorbet

A combination of cocoa powder and bittersweet chocolate are used to make this rich sorbet.

29. Mango Sorbet With a Chocolate-Chile Ripple

Juicy sorbet with a smoky, spicy chocolate swirl, thanks to chipotle powder? Yes, please. Just a little bit oof spice makes a big difference.

30. Plums & Roses Sorbet

There’s something so romantic about this subtle floral flavor, which uses just splash of rose extract, plus lots and lots of ripe plums.

31. Sgroppino (Lemon Sorbet Cocktail)

Inspired by a classic Venetian palate cleanser, this two-ingredient boozy sorbet couldn’t be easier to make. Whisk softened lemon sorbet in a bowl until it resembles the texture of frosting, then slowly whisk in prosecco until fully incorporated.

32. Peachy Buttermilk Sherbet

A sherbet differs from ice cream in that it doesn’t contain eggs, so the flavor is more refreshing than rich. This recipe calls for buttermilk, plus sugar, peach preserves, and frozen peaches.

What’s your all-time favorite ice cream flavor? Let us know in the comments below!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.