Espresso Ice Cream

I know, I know. February isn’t over, the Snowpocalypse aftermath has yet to totally melt, and here I am posting ice cream. No, i didn’t lose track of my calendar. I know the middle of winter isn’t the most popular time of year to be perusing ice cream recipes, but let’s be honest. There’s always a birthday cake that needs an ice cream accompaniment. There’s always a best friend that needs some cheering up. And there’s never a bad excuse to cozy up with a pint of your favorite flavor, put on your favorite movie and enjoy some me time. Ice cream knows no seasonal boundaries and it’s just as acceptable to enjoy a bowl in January as it is in June. And bonus – it won’t melt as fast!

This recipe was actually inspired by a Valentine’s Day gift and a breakfast trip. My Chief Culinary Consultant loves espresso and so for the holiday, I got him a hand-press espresso maker and all the other goodies needed to make some great espresso. It so happened that the next morning we went out to breakfast and on the table there was an ad for one of the restaurant’s newer desserts – espresso ice cream. I don’t remember now what it was paired with but we noticed it and my CCC mentioned how it would be great to have espresso ice cream with freshly brewed espresso poured over it. Never afraid of caffeine overload, I set out to make the ice cream.

You may call me weird (again), but I really love the flavor of coffee but rarely enjoy actually drinking it. Occasionally I will have a cup after dinner with something sweet, but more often than not I will pass when offered a cup. However, I absolutely love the flavor! Mocha frappuccino’s,Β espresso cheesecakes,cappuccino cinnamon squares, and now espresso ice cream… I love them all and anything else I can find coffee-flavored. How weird is it that I don’t actually drink coffee? I can’t figure it out. In any case, if you like coffee in any form, you will absolutely love this ice cream. Eat it plain, eat it in a cone, eat it drenched in espresso, or eat it atop a fudgy brownie and drizzle it with caramel. Enjoy! πŸ™‚

Don’t forget! If you’re dying to make homemade ice cream and cursing yourself for not having an ice cream maker, head straight to this tutorial on how to make homemade ice cream without an ice cream maker!

Espresso Ice Cream

Yield: Makes about 1 quart

Prep Time: 20 minutes (active) 8 hours 30 minutes (inactive)

Total Time: 9 hours


1Β½ cups whole milk
ΒΎ cup granulated sugar
1Β½ cups whole bold-roast coffee beans
Pinch of salt
1Β½ cups heavy cream
5 large egg yolks
ΒΌ teaspoon vanilla extract
ΒΌ teaspoon finely ground espresso


1. Warm the milk, sugar, whole coffee beans, salt, and Β½ cup of the cream in a medium saucepan. Once the mixture is warm, cover, remove from the heat, and let steep at room temperature for 1 hour.

2. Rewarm the coffee-infused milk mixture. Pour the remaining 1 cup cream into a large bowl and set a mesh strainer on top. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm coffee mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly, then scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.

3. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a heatproof spatula, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the spatula (and registers 170 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer). Pour the custard through the strainer and stir it into the cream. Press on the coffee beans in the strainer to extract as much of the coffee flavor as possible, then discard the beans. Mix in the vanilla and the finely ground espresso and stir until cool over an ice bath.

4. Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator, then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.


58 Responses to “Espresso Ice Cream”

  1. Pennies On a Platter on February 23, 2010 at 12:13 am

    Yummy! I just made the Coffee Ice Cream from this book. It was fantastic! I’ll be posting it soon… πŸ™‚


  2. Dave -nibbleanibble on February 23, 2010 at 1:04 am

    Wow, anything that tastes good can be made into ice cream.


  3. The Local Cook on February 23, 2010 at 2:28 am

    I love coffee flavored ice cream – never thought about making it myself. Mmmmmm.


  4. watchmebake on February 23, 2010 at 5:26 am

    it’s hot here all year round in sg so im up for any icecream recipes! especially one that looks and sounds as tantalising as yours πŸ˜€ now if only i can get an icecream maker…


  5. shannon on February 23, 2010 at 9:11 am

    yummmz. i loveeee coffee so this should be the bomb!
    just great for my side of the world, too crazily hot all year around. ice cream keeps everyone a little more sane(:


  6. Meghan on February 23, 2010 at 9:46 am

    I’m similar to you – love the flavor of coffee/espresso but don’t often drink drink it. I think ice cream is great all year long!


  7. Krystle on February 23, 2010 at 10:33 am

    Yum! I love ice cream even in the middle of the winter! Its just always a nice snack after dinner πŸ™‚


  8. Katrina on February 23, 2010 at 10:54 am

    I think icecream makes me a better person. Truly I do. It’s goodness can put me in the best of moods.


  9. JulieD on February 23, 2010 at 11:05 am

    First of all, I’m the same way (I just posted this on facebook), I like coffee ice cream but do not like coffee. I love the smell of flavored coffees though. Your blog and photographs are inspirational for a new food blogger like me. πŸ™‚ BTW, if I hadn’t seen your tweet last night about this photograph, I wouldn’t have thought that and it doesn’t look like one! LOL!


  10. Heather (Heather's Dish) on February 23, 2010 at 11:14 am

    wow…this sounds incredible! i think i might need to go buy an ice-cream maker now…


  11. jaclyn@todayslady on February 23, 2010 at 11:26 am

    I love ice cream all year round! I had some neapolitan last night (reminded me of childhood) and yes, it was good. Coffee flavored desserts are BEST! I need an ice cream maker!!


  12. bridget {bake at 350} on February 23, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    My husband would LOVE this! πŸ™‚ Well, I would too, actually!


  13. Delishhh on February 23, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    You have a beautiful blog. I just started and hope to learn more soon. I am always open for advice. I love espresso ice cream and will have to try this recipe.


  14. Erin on February 23, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    Fabulous! We actually just received an espresso machine so I’ve been living on lattes for the last few weeks. How could the possibility of Espresso Ice Cream possibly have escaped my mind? Thank you for reminding me!


  15. Georgia on February 23, 2010 at 2:38 pm

    Wow, that looks just divine! With spring right around the corner, this is a definite must-try! Looking forward to seeing more from you πŸ™‚


  16. Married to an Aussie in OK on February 23, 2010 at 3:00 pm

    Definitely not weird. I go for chai tea every time I’m at Starbucks, but I do love coffee flavor in other things!


  17. Bob on February 23, 2010 at 4:21 pm

    I need that. Need it. I don’t care what the temp is outside!


  18. Amanda on February 23, 2010 at 4:48 pm

    Gorgeous pictures… and this recipe looks so divine!!


  19. Joye 510 on February 23, 2010 at 5:18 pm

    This looks so amazing!! I can’t wait to make this for the family. I really like the idea of eating it on a fudge browine because that is my favorite dessert.


  20. Memoria on February 23, 2010 at 6:21 pm

    I love espresso ice cream.


  21. lo on February 23, 2010 at 7:26 pm

    I’m so addicted to coffee ice cream, it’s not even funny. And the pics on this post are giving me a serious craving. Caffeinated Bliss!


  22. nicole on February 23, 2010 at 8:28 pm

    I haven’t ever made my own ice cream because I don’t have an ice cream maker – but I think you and the rest of the blog world has convinced me I need to get one!


  23. Jonna on February 23, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    Just wanted to let you know that I love your blog! It’s fabulous, and the pictures are amazing. When your blog hopping visit me if you get a chance . . . we share something in common.


  24. TaraTakesTheCake on February 23, 2010 at 9:19 pm

    i too LOVE coffee flavorings but almost never drink coffee. wow if only i had an ice cream maker i would make this in a heartbeat! February or not (then again I live in California, so it never really dips below 50 :-p)


  25. Sweets at Vicky's on February 23, 2010 at 9:59 pm

    I just baked a batch of pumpkin slice with a coffee drizzle and I cannot get the scent of coffee out of my head. Your espresso icecream is making me this much closer to stealing the office’s coffee machine!!!


  26. Nastassia (LetMeEatCake) on February 24, 2010 at 11:58 am

    Great pic! i love coffee ice cream and i sometimes even enjoy when there are little flecks of espresso bean throughout. Perfect Scoop is definitely the best go to ice cream recipe guide!


  27. Eliana on February 24, 2010 at 4:07 pm

    I can enjoy ice cream any time of year. So comforting.


  28. Carol Egbert on February 25, 2010 at 11:15 am

    I’m in espresso/gelato land (Sicily for a couple of months and it is actually warm enough to stroll along the plaza, without a sweater and enjoy a coffee gelato – unlike Vermont where I usually can be found.


  29. TripleScoop on February 25, 2010 at 11:18 am

    Looks great! I enjoyed reading the post!


  30. boysnbiscuits on February 25, 2010 at 2:00 pm

    Me too! Love coffee-flavored desserts and drinks (especially with chocolate!), but can’t stand the stuff straight up. Your ice cream looks great!


  31. Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction on February 25, 2010 at 11:18 pm

    Yum… I could eat ice cream any time of the year… especially espresso ice cream! In fact, I’m thinking I could freeze the bowl for my ice cream maker by burying it in the giant snow pile in my front yard!


  32. Foodycat on February 26, 2010 at 3:46 pm

    This is the second coffee icecream recipe I have seen this week – obviously the universe is telling me that I have to have some! It sounds just wonderful.


  33. Megan on February 28, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    This sounds delicious-I love this flavor of icecream! I think this post just convinced me to go out and buy an ice cream machine πŸ™‚


  34. Grant Cheney on March 1, 2010 at 4:15 pm

    Great information in your post, I saw this report on tv the other day about this same thing and since I am going to be married next month and the timing could not have been better! thanks for the info!, I have bookmarked, thanks Grant Cheney


  35. katy on March 1, 2010 at 11:30 pm

    that looks amazing! the color looks so great — yum!


  36. Miranda on March 4, 2010 at 10:05 pm

    I will have ten to fifteen scoops, Please…LOL
    This looks FANTASTIC!!!!


  37. Avanika (Yumsilicious Bakes) on March 15, 2010 at 10:55 am

    You’re right, it DOES look like a nipple! But in a nice way πŸ™‚ It made me literally laugh out loud! Ice cream looks amazing!


  38. Michael Cavinta on March 26, 2010 at 12:54 am

    Wow! This is an awesome recipe!! Thank you for sharing this with us. I have been looking all over the internet for a decent espresso ice cream recipe and thank god I have found one. Two of my favorite food in the world, espresso and ice cream. Will try this out tonight! Kudos!


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  42. Caferina on January 12, 2011 at 7:43 am

    I’m a fan of homemade ice cream, but most recipes online are so complicated and require lots of hard to find ingredients. What I really like about your espresso ice cream is that it appears so simple to prepare based on what you described, and yet looks so yummy. I’ve to make some of this for my son’s birthday this year.


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  45. wypadek przy pracy on December 29, 2011 at 11:40 pm

    Vielen Dank fΓΌr dieses Blog-es ist toll! Ich mag diese Art von Menschen, die Wissen mit anderen zu teilen.


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  50. Mariam on December 1, 2012 at 11:35 pm

    Yum! I LOVE coffee and a good espresso ice-cream i’m always on the lookout for! I always taste espresso gelatos in shops before getting a scoop because a bad scoop pisses me off haha! I’ve tried several recipes, sometimes good, sometimes not. Infusing the beans i’m sure would make the texture difference since recipes that use liquid espresso never have a great texture! Mind you I don’t have an ice-cream machine but i’ve made some pretty damn good ice-creams without, I hope this turns our great! Thanks πŸ™‚


  51. Noreen on May 17, 2013 at 11:09 pm

    Delicious flavor! Another winner! I used decaf espresso beans because my sister is so sensitive to caffeine. My all time favorite though is still the toasted almond with sweet cherries.


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  53. lx on October 17, 2013 at 10:32 am

    Is it possible to replace the heavy cream with milk?


    • Michelle on October 17th, 2013 at 5:39 pm

      You can, but the ice cream will not be as rich or creamy.


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  56. Vishal Mistry on May 5, 2014 at 8:07 am

    for my first attempt at home made ice cream this recipe seemed a bit lengthier than the other recipes, but my love for coffee meant that i had to test my skills on this recipe. WOW, fantastic, the flavour is amazing, and making ice cream isnt that bad even without the ice cream machine (beat and freeze method), im going to be making more of the flavour on your site… thanks


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