homemade vanilla ice cream

Homemade ice cream is a real treat and so worth keeping a churn around for (affiliate link: I have this one). At our house we prefer custard-based ice creams because they are rich and creamy without the tendency to ice up as much as lower fat ice creams. In fact, I was raised to think that an ice cream without egg yolks wasn’t really ice cream at all – just sweetened frozen milk.

egg yolks

Start by separating the yolks and whites of the eggs.

yolks and sugar for ice cream

Now stir the sugar into the yolks.

milk and cream

Measure and pour the milk and cream into a large pot. Stick a (affiliate link) candy thermometer on the pot.

mixing in the yolks and sugar

Whisk in the yolk and sugar mixture.

Turn the heat to medium-low and whisk constantly. Whisk it, oh whisk it good! Whatever you do, don’t scramble the egg yolks, cause scrambled egg ice cream just doesn’t sound like something anybody should be eating. Bacon ice cream, though, definitely sounds like something worth eating.

custard up to temperature

Keep whisking until the temperature reaches 170F. Think of the arm muscles you’re toning with all this whisking.

vanilla being stirred into custard

Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.

covered ice cream custard

Now pour into a dish and cover it with plastic wrap. Gently push the plastic wrap down so it touches the custard. That will keep it from forming a skin. Then put it the fridge to cool for a few hours.

ice cream in churn

After cooling, setup your ice cream churn with rock salt and ice. Add the custard and start the machine. Run based on the manufacturer directions.

Once it’s done, it’ll be about as thick as soft serve or like a really good shake. You can eat it now if you want. If you want a firmer texture just put it in the freezer for at least 30 minutes to thicken up even more.

Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream


  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 12 egg yolks
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1-2 tbs quality vanilla extract


  1. Combine egg yolks, salt, and sugar in a small bowl.
  2. In a large pot fitted with a candy thermometer, add milk and cream. Turn heat to medium low.
  3. Whisk egg mixture into the cream and milk. Whisk almost constantly until temperature reaches 170F. The custard will have thickened slightly.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract.
  5. Pour mixture into a dish and cover with plastic wrap. Make sure the plastic wrap is right against the custard to prevent a skin from forming.
  6. Place into the refrigerator and allow to cool for 4 hours or overnight.
  7. Setup your ice cream churn and churn according to the manufacturer's directions. You can eat it now or you can chill for 30 minutes in the freezer for a thicker ice cream.

Adapted from: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/07/01/dining/the-master-ice-cream-recipe.html?_r=0


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Make rich and creamy vanilla ice cream at home with this recipe from Make It. Grow It. Click here to get the recipe or Pin It to save for later.

What’s your favorite flavor of ice cream?