Key lime pie is such an underrated dessert. There I said it!! But really, it’s a favorite of mine, especially in the summer, and it’s so hard to come by where I live!
I’ve been meaning to try a homemade key lime pie ice cream for a while now! I wasn’t sure exactly how i’d approach it because I’ve made my fair share of unsuccessful key limes pies in the past ????
When I was in high school and I attempted my first ever key lime pie to contribute to a gathering at my grandma’s house. I’d just gotten into cooking and it felt very adult to make something of my own!
Well… let’s just say it didn’t turn out quite as I planned and I was the butt of all my papa’s jokes that night ???? It never set properly so my papa was asking if he should eat it with a spoon or perhaps a straw LOL!!! It still makes me smile today.
ANYWHO! I have had better luck making a homemade key lime pie since, however, still nothing that competes with a good ole’ Marie Callender’s frozen key lime pie. So that’s exactly what I decided to use for this homemade coconut key lime pie ice cream!
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. This means, if you purchase something from a link I provided, I will receive a small commission. This is at no extra cost to you! Thank you so much for the support!
Tips for Making Homemade Coconut Key Lime Pie Ice Cream
Frozen Key Lime Pie
I’m all about making homemade desserts to incorporate into my ice creams.
But in this case, I didn’t trust my key lime pie making skills enough to go that extra mile. Marie Callender’s frozen key lime pie never disappoints.
It’s also incredibly convenient that it’s already frozen. If you do decide to make your own key lime pie, you’ll definitely need to freeze it before using it in this ice cream!
Working with the Key Lime Pie
Key lime pie has a soft, custard texture which makes it tricky to cut and work with.
How do you cut key lime pie?
Use a sharp knife that’s been dipped in hot water to cut it! Run the knife under hot water every 2 or 3 cuts!
For this homemade coconut key lime pie ice cream, it’s also important to have your key lime pie as frozen as possible, right up until you need it!
As soon as I cut all my pieces, I put them back in the freezer to firm up before adding them to the ice cream. This is key. No pun intended 😉
The bite size pieces of key lime pie thaw fast, you can probably see that in this photo here! I used a pastry scraper to lift them off the cutting board, otherwise they’ll stick!
The Secret Ingredient
The only thing providing the coconut flavor in this homemade coconut key lime pie ice cream is just 1/4 tsp of coconut extract! It was my first time using it so I was worried the flavor might be too strong but this measurement was perfect, in my opinion.
I considered using cream of coconut or coconut milk but I was worried about how the consistency of the ice cream would turn out. I’m sure it can work though as I found a few other recipes that used it.
Another idea to amp up the coconut flavor is to toast some coconut flakes and add them to the ice cream! I personally don’t love the texture of coconut, but I did consider adding it to the mixture and straining it after. But I wanted this recipe to be quick and easy so I decided not to!
If you try any of these, you’ll have to let me know!
Homemade Coconut Key Lime Pie Ice Cream Recipe
- 1 Ice Cream Maker
Coconut Key Lime Pie Ice Cream
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/4 tsp coconut extract
- 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
- 3 slices Marie Callender's Frozen Key Lime Pie
- 4 sheets graham crackers coarsely crushed
Coconut Key Lime Pie Ice Cream
- Chill your ice cream bowl in the freezer for at least 24 hours
- Add milk, sugar, and salt to a medium sized bowl
- Whisk until the sugar is completely dissolved (check with your finger)
- Stir in heavy cream, vanilla extract, and coconut extract
- Cover mixture and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight (I always do 24 hours)
- Pour the chilled ice cream mixture into your frozen ice cream bowl and churn!
- Cut the frozen key lime pie into bite size pieces. You'll need to use a sharp knife and run it under hot water frequently or else the pie will stick!
- Put the chunks of key lime pie back in the freezer as the ice cream continues to churn (at least 10 minutes!)
- Once the ice cream starts to thicken, about 15-20 minutes in, add in the graham cracker crumbles
- Churn for another 5 minutes or so!
- Pour 1/2 of the ice cream mixture into an air tight container
- Layer half of the frozen key lime pie chunks on the ice cream, using a pastry scraper or metal spatula to lift them off the cutting board
- Add the rest of the ice cream mixture, followed by another layer of the key lime pie pieces
- Freeze for 4+ hours for a firmer texture! Enjoy!*
This coconut key lime pie ice cream is truly one of my favorite flavors to date! It has a beautiful texture and the perfect summery, coconut lime flavor. The key lime pieces sort of become one with the ice cream itself and leave you with those buttery chunks of graham cracker crust!
If you’re a big fan of key lime pie like I am, I highly recommend trying this flavor!
Homemade Ice Cream FAQ
I’m no professional (like, at all), but i’ve been sharing about my homemade ice cream journey on Instagram since 2020. Many people in my community have been inspired to start making their own homemade ice cream and it makes me so happy!! If you’re one of those people, these questions might be helpful to you!
Do you need an ice cream maker?
You don’t need an ice cream maker to make homemade ice cream. However, if you want quality, creamy ice cream, I promise it’s worth investing in an ice cream maker! Once you have an ice cream maker, you won’t have any interest in buying ice cream from the grocery store ever again. Okay, except maybe when you need a quick Ben & Jerry’s run…
What is the best budget ice cream maker?
Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker is the best ice cream maker for a beginner. It’s affordable, easy to use, incredibly cute, and most importantly- makes the creamiest ice cream! It’s been really good to me. I’ve had many friends and family members purchase this machine and they always thank me later! All of my homemade ice cream recipes are specific to this Cuisinart ice cream maker.
Do you have recipes that don’t require an ice cream machine?
I don’t, but if you’re in interested in one of my flavors, look up “no churn” homemade ice cream recipes for that flavor. There are plenty of options out there… most use sweetened condensed milk!
I’ve made no-churn ice cream in the past, and it definitely doesn’t provide the same creamy texture as when you churn ice cream. To me, the texture seemed more firm and icy.
How long does it take to make homemade ice cream?
You have to be a little prepared when you make your own ice cream. The most important thing to remember is to put your ice cream maker bowl in the freezer for 24 hours before churning.
So as long as the bowl is frozen, you could make the ice cream batter in the morning and refrigerate for a few hours before churning. (The churning process only takes about 20 minutes) However, if you leave your ice cream mixture in the fridge longer, it will result in a creamier, more flavorful, ice cream. I almost always leave my mixture in the fridge overnight. Here’s an example of my homemade ice cream making schedule:
- Friday Afternoon– place the freezer bowl in the freezer then make the ice cream mixture, cover, and refrigerate. (Both for 24 hours)
- Saturday Afternoon– churn the ice cream mixture! It’ll be ready to eat in soft-serve consistency at this point, but I prefer more of a hard ice cream texture so I put it back in the freezer for at least a few hours
- Saturday Evening– enjoy the ice cream!
What if my ice cream isn’t thickening?
Without fail, the most common mistake when making homemade ice cream is forgetting to put the bowl in the freezer ahead of time.
Or, not giving the bowl enough time to freeze before churning. It really needs a full 24 hours. Trust me, I’ve made this mistake myself and it’s incredibly frustrating. You’re all excited to enjoy your ice cream and then you realize your ice cream mixture is not thickening at all and you have to wait another 24 hours to try again.
What’s the difference between ice cream and custard?
They’re almost the same, except that custard has egg yolks cooked into the ice cream, making it smoother and creamier. Making custard does require a little extra technique. Here are my tips for making a custard:
Tempering the Eggs
In order to prevent having scrambled eggs in your ice cream (ew!), you have to temper the eggs. Basically, the egg yolks and heated custard mixture have to be very carefully combined together. You’ll do this slowly while continuously whisking or stirring.
Strain the mixture
It’s not uncommon to get just a few small chunks of egg yolk that cooked, so it’s essential that you strain the mixture!
Can I use non-dairy or low-fat milk?
Yes and yes! Regarding non-dairy recipes, you’ll have to look those up. I made a non-dairy homemade vanilla ice cream once and it was pretty good. It definitely had a different flavor…more nutty! But the texture was great and I think if you’re used to non-dairy alternatives, you would enjoy it! As for low-fat milk, that is definitely an option as well. You would just replace the whole milk amount with the low-fat option. It won’t be the same creamy texture as a full-fat ice cream.
How do you store homemade ice cream?
When I first got our machine I used to just leave it in the freezer bowl and put a plastic wrap over it. It wasn’t the best method, but it did the job. I recommend putting it in an air-tight container. It will keep longer than just using plastic wrap! These are the containers I use!
How long does homemade ice cream last?
Homemade ice cream will be best to eat within one week, but it can last up to two weeks. After that, it starts to get icy and grainy.
I’d love to hear from you if you gave this recipe a try! Your comments and ratings mean so much! Thank you for being here, friends! <3