Say hello to summer with this sweet, simple, and lick-the-bowl-clean vegan ice cream recipe. Made with frozen bananas, coconut cream, vanilla beans, and almond milk, it’s the easiest (and most delicious) plant-based ice cream you’ll ever make.
What makes this recipe easy as can be is that you don’t need a fancy ice cream maker. Simply use a food processor or blender to whip up the ingredients, chill in the freezer, and serve.
Bonus: top each bowl with two-ingredient vegan magic chocolate shell for the ultimate summer sundae and kid-loving bowl.
Vegan Ice Cream Ingredients
Creamy ice cream can be made sans dairy by using frozen bananas. When bananas are ripe, spotty, and a bit too mushy to eat, freeze them! Frozen bananas are not only delicious in smoothies, but they are the perfect source for homemade vegan ice cream.
Coconut cream gives this ice cream flavor, texture, and a creamy texture reminiscent of dairy-based ice cream. Coconut cream, not to be confused with coconut milk (or oil), is the thick creamy layer of blended coconut meat that arises from coconut milk.
Purchase cans or culinary cartons of coconut cream, or make it from BPA-free cans of coconut milk. To make coconut cream, place two cans of coconut milk in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning, flip the cans upside-down and open carefully. The hardened coconut cream should be at the top with a layer of coconut water underneath. Scoop out the cream and reserve the separated water for smoothies or salad dressings.
When looking for a can of coconut cream or coconut milk, find a BPA-free can that does not contain any added sugars or artificial flavors. Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods both have great options.
Other simple ingredients in this vegan ice cream recipe include vanilla bean and almond milk. Real deal vanilla beans (and vanilla extract) have a warming and fragrant flavor that’s like any other. They naturally sweeten this ice cream recipe without the need for added sugar or flavoring.
Almond milk helps to thin the ice cream out, but using another non-dairy milk will work just as well. Unsweetened coconut milk or hemp milk would be delicious additions.
Four-ingredient, no ice cream maker needed, delicious vegan ice cream. Hello, summer!
- 4 ripe bananas, cut into coins and frozen
- 2 cups coconut cream
- 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped out
- 2-4 Tbsp almond milk
- Cut ripe bananas into coins and place in a freezer bag. Freeze for at least 24 hours.
- To a blender or food processor add frozen bananas, coconut cream, vanilla bean seeds, and 2 tablespoons almond milk.
- Blend mixture for 3-5 minutes, pausing to scrape down the sides or using a tamper to move things along. Add more almond milk if consistency is too crumbly.
- Continue to blend until ice cream is smooth and creamy.
- Pour ice cream into a freezer-safe dish (such as a bread tin) and place in the freezer to sit for 20 minutes.
- Remove ice cream from freezer, give everything a good stir, and place back in the freezer.
- Allow ice cream to firm up for 3-5 more hours before serving.
- Before serving, let ice cream sit out for 5-10 minutes to warm up. It may be too hard to scoop straight from the freezer.
- Scoop and enjoy!
Photos by Kate Gavlick