In this recipe guide, I’m going to show you how to make ice cream with a blender in four easy steps. This will help ensure you don’t have to drive to the Fosselman’s or McConnell’s every time your kids scream for a scoop. Then, you’ll also have the freedom to customize your frozen dessert however you like, with whatever healthy ingredients your tongue craves.
Of course, I don’t mean you toss kales and chia seeds anyhow into your blender. I’m just saying you can use frozen fruits, whipped cream or full-fat milk, and sweetener of your choice. The three are usually the main ingredients of ice cream, which means your recipe has to be based on them. And considering we’re dealing with frozen foods, you also must have a nice blender for ice that can handle everything without dying midway.
A Homemade Blender Ice Cream’s Still Special
First up, we sure can’t compare a classic mango scoop from the McConnell’s to your homemade recipe. I’ve tried it myself and even though that chocolate cherry combo will be mouthwatering, it still won’t have the perfection from the ice cream stand.
Regardless, I’ve not seen my little niece make a face in either of the ice cream combo flavors I’ve made lately. She’s quite a fussy eater, which is why I always like her company during the weekends when I’m cooking my recipes.
Another great thing about homemade ice cream is that it’s effortless to prepare. Unlike a smoothie, an ice cream requires all pre-prepared ingredients. So, seven minutes or less can be enough for the whole process.
Also, when showing you how to make a strawberry milkshake without ice cream, we concluded the ice cream’s still the characteristic ingredient. So, you can also cook more of the ice cream and store it so you can make milkshakes later.
The Blender Has To Be Powerful Enough For The Task
Yes, you don’t need an ice cream maker to produce a copycat of your favorite mango ice cream flavor. Any kitchen blender that’s strong enough to fully pulverize frozen fruits to a smooth consistency should work. That includes even those regular blenders under $100 that have the kind of motor.
Nonetheless, ice and frozen fruits are very hard. It should come as no surprise to hear your cheap blender break an arm or smoke the motor. This is so as these regular blenders depend on the blade to do the blending. Hence, the reason I’m recommending a dedicated high-power blender like Blendtec or Vitamix if you’ll be making the frozen dessert more often. Why is that?
Unlike these cheap regular blenders, a machine like Vitamix E320, Pro 750, or Blendtec Total Classic usually uses its power to pummel through ingredients. That’s why the Blendtec has a blade with blunt edges. However, all Vitamix machines have a combination of powerful motor and shape blades. Thus, the secret to its super-smooth blends.
Even better, blenders like Vitamix 750 and 780 have preset smart programs that enable you to make the ice creams without guesswork. Then, others like the Vitamix A2500 and A3500 have both preprogrammed settings and a built-in timer for even more accurate results.
In any case, some regular blenders are still powerful enough to tackle ice cream. Ninja blenders are a perfect example, thanks to their proprietary total crushing technology.
Ps. You can prepare a homemade whipping cream in a Vitamix while using the Aer disc container.
How to Make Ice Cream with a blender
As I keep saying, making ice cream with a blender is super easy, especially if you have a good blender. However, there are four important steps that guide me, and maybe you can use them as well for a successful blending.
Step One: Understand the Base Recipe.
Before all else, you need to understand the basic formula that makes up ice cream. That way, you can now play with your favorite ingredients and customize the flavors however you like.
Anyway, the basic recipe of ice cream usually consists of three simple ingredients that never lack in your kitchen. They include heavy cream or full-fat coconut milk to give the creaminess, frozen fruits for the ice cream texture, and a sweetener to taste.
Note, you can also introduce the add-ins of your liking to give your homemade ice cream an extra sweet taste. So, a Pink berry ice cream could have a combination of heavy cream, frozen berries, honey, and a touch of Vanilla extract.
Step two: Arrange the Ingredients Properly.
Regardless of the make, you must arrange the ingredients into your blender properly for effective processing. In doing that, you’ll also relieve stress off the blades and minimize the risk of burning out the motor.
The “universal blending rule” provides that any countertop blender will work best when you add the soft ingredients at the bottom and heavy/ hard ones on top. That means your frozen berries should be on the top of the heavy cream.
If it’s a personal blender- like Nutri Ninja Auto IQ can handle frozen foods, you’ll have to invert the blending cup to blend. So, as you add the ingredients, you’ll need to arrange them such that the frozen fruits are at the bottom and the liquids (coconut milk or heavy cream) on top.
Meanwhile, ice cream is also one of the things you can make with your immersion blender. However, the little guy usually starts blending from the top. So, you’ll want to have the light/ soft ingredients on top and the frozen fruits at the bottom of the blending container.
Step Three: Don’t over Blend!
Yes, and apologies for shouting at you. The goal’s to make soft-serve ice cream without melting it up. So, you’ll need to keep an eye on your blend until you see (from the top) what looks like four mounds. If you’re using a Vitamix, that will take about 30-45 seconds (depending on the amounts of ingredient) to complete.
Alternatively, you can use the preset program for frozen desserts to ensure you don’t over-blend your ice cream formula. These programs usually consist of a preprogrammed “cooking” timer of the recipe at hand. So, a blender with a timer, either settable or that only counts up, can also come in handy.
Step Four: Be a Friend with the Tamper.
That right. Blending the three or four ice cream ingredients is pretty much similar to using your kitchen blender for acai bowls. That super-thick mixture will be a little difficult for the stubborn ingredients to voluntarily follow the spinning blades. So, you can use the tamper to help push these ingredients into the blade.
Also, the tamper can help prevent the issue of an air bubble, which causes the blades to get stuck and stop moving.
How to Make a Sweet Vanilla Strawberry Ice Cream in a Vitamix
This is my all-time recipe. You can make with only the frozen berries and whipping cream, but my fussy niece despises tart-ish tastes. So, I often sprinkle like a tablespoon or two of natural sweetener and an add-in.
- 2/3 cup of heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoon honey to taste
- 1 tablespoon Vanilla extract
- 280 grams of frozen strawberries
- Add all the ingredients into the blender container as they appear and secure the lid
- Power the machine on and start blending from the lowest speed, then increase to the highest speed
- Continue blending for about 30 seconds while using the tamper to push the frozen fruits down into the blade. After 30 seconds, you’ll start to notice the four mounds I mentioned. If you have a sharp ear, you’ll also hear the sound of the motor change.
- Once the desired consistency is reached, stop the machine
- Then, serve the ice cream immediately in its soft texture. Or else transfer to a freezer-safe container and let it sit in the freezer for about two hours to get a scoop-able consistency.
How to Make a “Healthy” Cherry Chocolate Ice Cream with an Immersion Blender
Cherries and chocolate are a natural match together, which I’m sure even your kids will love. If you have an immersion/ stick/hand blender, you can prepare the ice cream formula very easily from anywhere. You can even make it on the road!
- 2 teaspoons honey
- A pinch of sea salt
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- ½ avocado (ripe and peeled)
- 1/3 cup (5 tablespoons) coconut milk
- 150 grams ding cherries (pitted and frozen)
- In a beaker, add the coconut milk and cocoa powder. Then, stir until they mix well
- In a different wider bowl, place all the frozen cherries and honey
- Next, grab your stick blender and place as close to the ingredients as possible
- Start the hand blender and pulse the frozen fruits until they’re roughly chopped.
- Pour in the sea salt, avocado, vanilla extract, and milk + cocoa mixture from step (1) above. Then, start blending again as you move the blender around, including up and down, to get into contact with all the ingredients
- Continue blending as you move the blender around for about 90 seconds or until you achieve the desired consistency.
- Serve your homemade ice cream immediately when still soft. You can also put it into the freezer for a few hours to get firm enough to scoop out.
The #7 Other Ice Cream Flavor Combos to Try With Your Blender
As you’ve seen, my favorite sweet vanilla strawberry ice cream and the cherry chocolate one are easy and quick to make. If you were also able to prepare the two, it shouldn’t be hard to try the other flavor combos.
As you might have noticed, though, my two recipes have a mixing ratio of 1 cup creamy liquid to I pound of frozen fruit. This helps ensure a perfect consistency every time without having to add ingredients in between blending.
Therefore, as you try any of the other flavor combos, always remember to use this ratio. That goes for even your own creative home recipes if you want them to come out perfect.
Anyway, here are the seven other flavorful ice cream combos you can try next:
- Vegan-friendly Avocado Ice Cream:
The recipe is not only perfect for the vegans, but it’s still creamy and tasty. It’s also easy to make with a blender, either the full-size or handheld model. You just need to put together some creamy coconut milk, cubed ripe avocados, mint leaves, and a touch of lemon juice. You’ll also need a frozen ripe banana (cubed) and a bit of maple syrup for your frozen dessert to taste.
- Calm Pina Colada Ice Cream
Who said you can only have a Pina Colada cocktail? Yes, yes you can sprinkle some nice rum, but I would prefer it without if you’re to share with kids. So, your ice cream formula will now have coconut milk, pineapple juice, vanilla extract, frozen pineapples, and granulated sugar for extra taste.
- Colorful Rainbow ice Cream
Instead of the usual Vanilla, you can serve your kids that weekend ice cream in a kaleidoscope of unicorn colors. You only need to blend frozen bananas and strawberries for the pick cream, frozen banana and blueberries for a purple cream, and coconut whipped cream and natural blue food coloring for the final blue swirl. Then, add the three creams one at a time while you swirl gently without over mixing.
Alternatively, you can blend some heavy whipping cream with milk and vanilla. Then, divide the creamy mixture into six different containers (about one cup each). In each of the six containers, you’ll now add a few drops of natural food coloring and gently fold the mixture.
Once done, drop each of the soft serve colored cream by spoonful into a large container (from the freezer) as you alternate the colors. Then, cover the container, put it into the freezer for a few hours, and serve as scoops of bright, rainbow ice cream.
- Summery Peaches Ice Cream
A lick of the peaches and cream combo can also be a great refreshment for a hot summer afternoon. You just need to toss the heavy cream, frozen banana pieces, slices of frozen peaches, maple syrup, and vanilla extract into a blender. Then, switch the machine on and blend into a smooth soft-serve consistency.
- Fresh Super Lemon Ice Cream
If you’re up for it, this Italian lemon gelato copycat can be so refreshing and easy to make. You just need frozen blueberries, heavy cream, some milk, lemon juice, a stream of organic lemon zest, and sugar to taste.
- Green Apple Superfood Ice Cream:
When I said not to add the kales into the blender, I never meant that you can’t use vegetables for some ice cream. If you have fresh spinach, a ripe banana, frozen apple juice concentrate, and some ice cubes, you can make a real rich green ice cream. You can add a few ice cubes for an extra chill
- Tropical Mango Coconut Ice Cream
Last but not least, you can enjoy that extra tropical vibes without having to leave your home. You just need a good blender that can tackle frozen mango pieces, coconut milk or heavy whipping cream, and maple syrup.
Key Takeaway: Recommended Blender
|Blender Brand||Uniqueness||Best features||Current Price|
|Ninja BN701 Auto-iQ||Best of Budget||1400 Watts power output, 72-ounce pitcher, 3-preset programs, and total crushing blade||Check on Amazon|
|Classic Vitamix 5200||Best of Value||1380 watts power output, 10-variable speed, 64-ounce narrow container, and tamper||Check on Amazon|
|Vitamix Immersion Blender||Best of hand Blender||625 watts power output, 5-variable speeds, and scratch-resistant blade guard||Check on Amazon|
If you’re a light user, whereby you use your blender like three or four times a month, a budget blender may be enough to make your ice cream through the year. The newly-released Ninja BN701 Auto-iQ is a perfect example, which, by the way, you can grab under a hundred dollars.
If you’re a heavy-duty user, or rather you’re planning to be blending icy foods often, a dedicated high-power blender is the best choice. The classic Vitamix 5200 is perfect as it has both a powerful motor and a narrow container. Hence, enabling you to make even smaller batches of ice cream without difficulty.
Meanwhile, the Vitamix Immersion Blender is a great option when you want to have even more blending flexibility. It has a compact design that you can carry with you with ease, plus also you can blend in about any open container.
Ice cream, whether soft-serve or scoop, is one of the best desserts of all time. Of course, most prefer it during the summer weather, but, in truth, your kid can ask you even during the winter.
Fortunately, you don’t have to visit an ice cream shop or have an ice cream maker to make your favorite dessert. If there’s a powerful blender that can handle frozen stuff and all the ingredients, you should be able to make any ice cream flavor combo. In the guide, I’ve highlighted nine different options you can try today.
As you try either of the ice cream formulas, though, I would like to remind you not to forget the basic ratio formula. That’s one pound of frozen fruit and one cup of heavy cream or full-fat coconut milk.