There’s just something about a good homemade coffee ice cream! I wasn’t a big fan when I was younger, but now Dan and I are big coffee snobs… I guess that’s what happens when you get into your 30s, huh?
We even invested in a new espresso machine last year! We probably could have put that money towards a new couch or something (lol) but this espresso machine brings us so much joy every single day!
With that being said, this decadent homemade coffee ice cream is everything we hoped it would be and more. It has such a rich coffee flavor, it’s creamy, and it has dark chocolate flecks and cookies… what more could you ask for?!
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How to get the best homemade coffee ice cream
This is truly the best coffee ice cream I’ve ever had and it’s 100% to do with the fact that I used whole coffee beans to make it.
I know this because once I made an espresso flavored ice cream with Kit-Kats. It was good, but not amazing.
The only thing I used to get the coffee flavor was espresso powder… there’s the difference! The flavor wasn’t as strong and rich as this homemade coffee ice cream!
What type of coffee is best to use?
Ultimately it’s up to you! I would just say that the whole beans will give the best results over a ground coffee, iced coffee, or instant coffee granules!
You can even use a flavored coffee if you want!
I would normally have used a caffeinated coffee (because that’s what we buy), but I accidentally bought this decaf last week so I figured this was the perfect opportunity to use it.
Tips for this coffee ice cream recipe
Read through the whole recipe first!
Since this is a custard, there’s more steps involved and timing is really important as well. Make sure you read through everything before getting started so you have everything you need ready!
watch out for evaporated milk
When you steep the coffee beans in the milk for 20 minutes, some of your milk is going to evaporate. I lost about 1/4 cup, so all you have to do is add more fresh milk until it’s 1 1/2 cups
strain, strain, strain!
There’s two separate times throughout the recipe where we have to strain the coffee ice cream mixture. Don’t skip this step or you’ll have sketchy chunks like this in your ice cream:
I’m a huge fan of how these chocolate flecks turned out! I definitely want to use this method in future flavors.
I just used a small handheld grater! Oh and don’t forget to freeze the chocolate ribbons for 10 minutes before adding them into the ice cream or they will likely melt.
If you know me at all, you know cookies is my favorite thing to put in an ice cream! I can’t help myself!
One mistake I made!
I still can’t believe I did this…
I poured the ice cream mixture into the freezer bowl and pressed the “on” button. But I completely forgot to put in the paddle in!! I’ve never done this before but it’s definitely not a mistake you want to make.
I noticed about 5 minutes in and the ice cream in the bottom of the bowl had started to freeze up pretty hard while the top 2/3 was still liquid. It was sort of difficult to get the paddle back in because of that but I did manage!
All in all, I think I caught it just in time to save it, but I did have to over-churn to make up for it which messed with the texture a bit. Honestly… still out favorite ice cream ever so that says a lot! The flavor was on point.
Coffee Ice Cream with Dark Chocolate and Oreos
- 1 Ice Cream Maker
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 3/4 cup whole coffee beans (regular or decaf)
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 4 large egg yolks
- 2 tsp flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 bar dark chocolate (or chocolate chips)
- 12 oreos
Coffee Ice Cream (Part One)
- Add milk and coffee beans to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat
- Turn the heat to low, cover, and let the coffee beans steep for 20 minutes. Stir occasionally
- Meanwhile, beat the sugar and egg yolks in a medium bowl until they're thickened and light yellow in color
- Beat in the flour and salt and set aside
- Remove some of the coffee beans with a slotted spoon and then pour the mixture over a strainer and into a liquid measuring cup
- Some of the milk probably evaporated so add fresh milk back until it measures to 1 1/2 cups again
- Slowly beat the warm milk into the eggs and sugar, constantly whisking
- Once all the milk is incorporated, add the mixture back to the saucepan and set the heat to low
- Stir constantly until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon (don't let it boil!)
- Once it has thickened, pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a separate bowl
- Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature and then stir in the heavy cream and vanilla
- Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a few hours or overnight (I always do overnight)
Coffee Ice Cream (Part Two)
- Pour the mixture into your chilled freezer bowl
- While the ice cream is churning, use a small grater to make the chocolate flecks
- Place the chocolate flecks in the freezer for at least 10 minutes while the ice cream is still churning
- Chop up the Oreos!
- One the ice cream has starts to really thicken (for me it's usually about 15 minutes in) add in your Oreos and chocolate flecks
- The ice cream can be served as is (soft-serve consistency) or place it in the freezer for a few hours to firm up!
- Either way, place an airtight container and add leftover Oreo chunks and dark chocolate to the top of the ice cream
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’s 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 a sweetened condensed milk!
I’ve made no-churn ice cream in the past, and it definitely does not 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 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.
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. (This homemade coffee ice cream recipe is technically a custard)
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’m telling you guys, this is the best coffee ice cream recipe and I’ll be making it for years to come! Let me know if you try it out and if you made any adjustments to fit your needs!
That’s why making your own ice cream is so much fun. Check out some of my other favorite Cuisinart ice cream recipes: Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup S’mores Ice Cream, Strawberry Brownie Ice Cream, and Lemon Poppy Seed Cake Ice Cream.
Let me know what your other ice cream questions are!