Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream
The only thing better than local strawberry season is making Creamy Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream! Fresh, bright, and full of flavor, this is the best strawberry ice cream you’ll ever make at home. No ice cream maker? No problem!
What does one do when you have eaten as many fresh strawberries as you can handle? When your hands are so pink that it is liking a walking badge of berry gluttony? Why you make strawberry ice cream of course.
And you look at yourself in the mirror and say “sack up. Strawberry season is short. There is no such thing as too many fresh berries”!
Strawberries are like nature’s candy and we love homemade goodies that include these summertime jewels. Making strawberry freezer jam is a yearly tradition, and Strawberry Fudge Energy Date Balls are a monthly treat. And I drool just thinking about the luscious and creamy Strawberry Truffles.
What Ingredients are in Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream?
- Strawberries (doy)
- Heavy cream
- Egg yolks <—-this is happening. Deal with it
- Vanilla Extract (related: try homemade!)
- Almond extract
- Kosher salt
- Sugar (just a wee little bit. Seriously, not a lot considering this is dessert)
The kind of strawberries you use in this ice cream matters. Storebought strawberries with their sad white cores and “bred for shipment and not taste” flavor does nothing for this recipe. Farmers market or backyard strawberries that are so ripe they may burst – that is what you want to use for homemade ice cream.
You can even use frozen strawberries if you have some in the freezer. Check out this post on how to freeze strawberries to learn how to save any extra fresh berries.
And if you are looking for a dairy-free/vegan ice cream option, check out this Chocolate Vegan Ice Cream Recipe.
Why Does Homemade Ice Cream Take Soooooo Long?
I am not someone known for my patience. I have screamed at microwaves before for being too slow. But I promise you with everything in my heart, if you give this recipe 4-12 hours to sit in your fridge, it will pay dividends.
Allowing the strawberries to macerate in their own juices, will result in something magical. Also, by spending that time letting the flavors develop, you get away with using so much less sugar than is called for in normal ice cream recipes.
With the absence of all that sugar filler, the strawberry flavor is intense, bright, and summery. The kind of utter strawberriness that will punch you right in the face with flavor.
But, if you want to speed up this process a bit, there are ways. The base needs to be ice cold before it is put in the ice cream maker. You can put the base in the freezer for 2-3 hours to cool after cooking it.
You could also prep the strawberries the day before you plan to make the ice cream or use Strawberry Syrup. It will give them plenty of time to release their delicious juices. When I want to serve homemade strawberry ice cream, I make the base the night before, churn it in the morning, and then freeze it until I am ready to serve. A lot of “hurry up and wait” time, but always worth it!
Here’s How to Make It:
- Combine cream, milk, salt, 2 tbsp sugar, and the extracts in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat until sugar has dissolved.
- Blend or mash some of your strawbs and chop up about 1/3 cup. Set aside.
- Whisk your eggs, and pour a bit of the hot milk mixture slowly into the eggs, whisking the whole time.
- Return the egg/milk mixture to the pan and cook on low for another 5 minutes.
- Pour it through a fine-mesh strainer over a bowl. Refrigerate for 4-12 hours. Ugh, I know. Waiting is hard!
- Take the base out of the fridge and add the puree and chopped berries to the milk mixture and stir to combine.
- With your ice cream maker running, add the ice cream base to the machine, churn until it looks like, well, ice cream.
- Transfer to a freezer-proof bowl and place a piece of plastic wrap or waxed paper pressing down on top of the ice cream until it makes contact. Cover and freeze until solid.
Pro Tips/Recipe Notes:
- It’s super important in step 3 to slowly add the hot cream mixture in a little at a time. This is called tempering which is a fancy term for warming up the eggs slowly so they don’t scramble. Cause nobody wants scrambled egg ice cream.
- Want to use frozen strawberries? Defrost fully and set aside the liquid that is produced. Add sparkling water to it and have a refreshing summer spritzer.
- Using strawberries that may not be as juicy as you’d like? Add 1/3 cup of strawberry jam or homemade strawberry puree to punch up the flavor (related: Low-Sugar Strawberry Jam).
- The ice cream will be a soft-serve texture when you’re initially done churning it. Eat it right then if you can’t wait (who can?), or freeze for a few hours until solid.
- No ice cream machine? Freeze and stir the base every hour until frozen and creamy. For more details, check out this post from David Lebovitz on how to make ice cream without a machine.
More Recipes Like This:
- Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream
- Gluten-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
- The Ultimate Homemade Peach Ice Cream
- Strawberry Bark
- No Churn Peanut Butter Ice Cream
- Fresh Blueberry Ice Cream With Cardamom
Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream
- In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream, milk, kosher salt, almond, vanilla extracts, and 2 tbsp of sugar over medium heat. Cook until sugar is dissolved. Do not let it boil. Remove from heat.
- Place the egg yolks in a medium bowl, and whisk well with a fork.
- Chop 1/3 cup of the strawberries into bite-sized pieces. Blend the rest of the strawberries, and 1/4 cup of sugar, and puree until smooth..
- Add the diced strawberries into the pureed mixture. Transfer to the fridge.
- Using a 1/3 measuring cup, add some of the hot milk/cream mixture to the egg yolks, and whisk while you combine. Add another 1/3 cup - mix. Then a final 1/3 cup - mix. Whisk the egg mixture into the rest of the milk, and return the pan to the stove.
- Cook on medium-low heat for 5 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat, and pour the mixture into a heatproof bowl fitted with a sieve/fine mesh strainer.
- Transfer to the fridge for 4-12 hours (preferably) or until completely cooled.
- Just prior to adding to your ice cream maker, add the strawberries to the chilled ice cream base and stir to combine.
- Add the ice cream base to your ice cream maker of choice, churning until it has reached your preferred level of "doneness".
- Transfer to an air-tighter container, pressing a piece of plastic wrap over the top of the ice cream, ensuring it makes contact with the ice cream. Freeze.
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