How to Make Ice Cream Without an Ice Cream Maker
This post shares an easy tutorial for how to make homemade ice cream without an ice cream maker using a blender and your freezer. This is called the Freezer Method and it can be used for both dairy ice cream and vegan ice cream.
In the heat of summer, I’ve got you covered with this easy post on how to make ice cream without an ice cream maker, using a blender and your freezer instead.
I get it. You don’t need another kitchen appliance that you don’t use that often. An ice cream machine is kind of silly, anyway, all it does is stir up your ice cream ingredients in a cold bowl. You can do that yourself and I’ll show you how!
Ice Cream Recipes
You can literally make any flavor of ice cream your heart desires at home. The sky is the limit when it comes to flavors. I especially love using fresh fruits to flavor homemade ice cream.
Since I don’t eat dairy for health reasons, I’ve made quite a few dairy-free, vegan ice creams over the years. Some of my favorites include:
Don’t miss my round-up of the best plant-based ice cream recipes!!!
You might also want to check out my guide for How to Make Vitamix Sorbet.
For this tutorial, I’m showing how easy it is to make ice cream at home without an ice cream maker. You will need a blender or a food processor to make your ice cream mixture. Since I don’t use dairy in my recipes, I almost always use full-fat canned coconut milk as the creamy, dairy-free base of my homemade ice creams.
But, you can also use this tutorial to make regular dairy ice cream as well. Either way, once you’ve decided on a recipe, this is how you make ice cream without an ice cream machine.
Once you blend your ice cream mixture, the next step is to pour the mixture into a freezer-safe bowl.
Since you won’t be using a machine to churn the mixture, this is the part that requires some handiwork. You’ll be using a large fork to break up any of the ice crystals over the next 4 hours.
Don’t worry, you only need to do it about 4 separate times, waiting 45 minutes between.
Over the course of the four hours, the ice cream will start to develop ice crystals. Your job is to break those up and help keep the mixture from freezing into an ice cube.
I’ve made homemade ice cream with and without a machine, and the final texture is fairly similar.
Yes you can. I would recommend using cream or full-fat milk.
Yes, but it will be more of a soft-serve texture. Check out my recipe for Chocolate & Peanut Butter Vegan Soft Serve.
Yes, if you try this method and decide that you’d rather have a machine do the work for you, I recommend a Cuisinart ice cream maker. I got mine as a bridal shower gift years and years ago, and it has earned its spot in my kitchen come every summer.
- 1 12–ounce can of full-fat coconut milk, chilled
- 2 cups sliced peaches (or your choice of frozen fruit)
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Combine the coconut milk, frozen fruit, maple syrup, and vanilla in the base of a high-speed blender.
- Blend until the ingredients are smooth.
- Pour the mixture into a freezer-safe bowl and place the bowl in the freezer.
- Use a large fork to stir the mixture about 4 separate times, every 45 minutes.
- After about four hours, your homemade ice cream should be ready to serve.
- Once the mixture has reached the desired consistency, use an ice cream scoop to serve.
- It’s worth noting that dairy-free ice creams will freeze very hard if left in the freezer for more than 6-8 hours. In this case, you just need to let the ice cream sit on the countertop for about 15-20 minutes before serving.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 3 hours
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Freezer
- Cuisine: Healthy
- Diet: Vegan
- Serving Size:
- Calories: 269
- Sugar: 22.4 g
- Sodium: 14.3 mg
- Fat: 18.3 g
- Saturated Fat: 16.1 g
- Carbohydrates: 27.4 g
- Fiber: 1.2 g
- Protein: 2.4 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
Keywords: ice cream in the freezer, freezer method for ice cream
About the Author: Carrie Forrest has a master’s degree in public health with a specialty in nutrition. She is a top wellness and food blogger with over 10 million annual visitors to her site. Carrie has an incredible story of recovery from chronic illness and is passionate about helping other women transform their health. Send Carrie a message through her contact form.