Chances are that you have had a slice of birthday cake with a side of Fresh Strawberry Ice Cream at some point in your life. It’s a classic. And if you haven’t here is your opportunity to make that happen with something far better than any store-bought version. Sweetened with a hint of honey and naturally pink, it’s sure to brighten your day.
My daughter LOVES strawberry anything, so how could I resist homemade ice-cream for her birthday? As we shared it with family that day, everyone had the same reaction; I can honestly say that this is the best strawberry ice-cream that I have ever tasted. It’s VERY easy to make with simple ingredients, the hardest part is waiting for it to freeze!
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What You’ll Need:
Fresh Strawberries- I know that fresh strawberries aren’t always as convenient as frozen, but for this recipe you will need 1-pound of fresh berries. Frozen holds too much water and will cause the formation of ice crystals.
Pick them up the morning of, or the day before. The fresher the better. Nice bright strawberries don’t only add to the flavor, but the color that we all recognize in the nostalgic store-bought stuff.
Be sure to wash the strawberries. I always soak them in 1 cup of white distilled vinegar and 4-5 cups of cold water for 5-10 minutes then rinse well. When cutting, I only remove the stems and cut into bite-sized pieces, no need to hull the white part.
Honey & White Sugar
Lemon Juice- A tiny bit of lemon juice helps to brighten the flavors and preserve the color. It also balances the sweetness from the berries, honey, and sugar. You can use bottled or fresh, both work just as well.
Heavy Whipping Cream AND Half & Half- I have tried several recipes of different kinds of ice-cream since purchasing my maker and this is a very good combination. The higher fat content gives you that creamy texture and rich flavor we all want in a good quality ice-cream.
Clear Vanilla Flavor– I prefer a clear vanilla in this recipe. I didn’t want the natural color of vanilla extract to interfere with the brightness of the pink. It’s not a necessity, you can use regular vanilla extract or vanilla paste if you like.
Pastry Cutter– You will need to mash the berries into smaller pieces before processing the ice cream in the machine. If you do not have a pastry cutter, feel free to use a potato masher or fork, but the chunks will be larger.
Blender– I whip the cream mixture together in my blender. I use the “frozen” setting on my Vitamix and it gives me a slightly whipped consistency. The ice-cream turns out a little creamier when I take this extra step. If you don’t want to use a blender then you can easily whisk by hand for a minute or two and you will still get a great result.
TIP: You can also make a “smooth” version by blending or pulsing the strawberries in with the cream. This is a great option if you want to avoid too many frozen bits of berries. Pulsing them a few times in the blender is a great way to go. I have even blended the strawberries completely and it is fantastic!
Storage Containers– We make ice-cream often so it is handy to have a few air-tight containers handy since it is not something I buy anymore. These are great, they fit nicely in my freezer and are stackable. You can use any shallow 1.5 quart air-tight plastic or a metal container, but I love a longer container because it allows me to scoop every last bit out.
Tips & Suggestions
- If you like a soft serve texture, then you can scoop this as soon as your machine is done. Put the leftover amount in your container and freeze for at least two hours for more traditional ice-cream.
- With the Kitchen Aid attachment, make sure you freeze the bowl for at least 24 hours before using and let it come to room temperature when you are done/before washing it out. Also, use something gentle such as silicone spatula to remove your ice-cream. The bowl itself is not something you want to scratch.
- Bring the ice-cream out of the freezer to sit on cooling rack for about 10-15 minutes before serving, this depends on the warmth of your kitchen. The rack keeps it elevated off of the counter, allowing air to flow around it so the bottom does not start to melt.
- This makes an EXCELLENT accompaniment to birthday cake or serve it along with your favorite cookie. My daughter loves to have this with a sugar cookie on the side. It’s like having an ice-cream sandwich without the mess. Everything stays in the bowl, no drips, no sticky mess.
- Keep the heavy whipping cream and half & half chilled.
- Do not overmix the ice cream during the freezing process. I set up the bowl and attachment, then switch the mixer to STIR and slowly pour in the good stuff. If you feel it is going to slow and freezing up along the sides, slide it over to SPEED 1. Any faster than that and the bowl can spill the cream over the edges.
- Set a timer for 10 minutes and it usually doesn’t take more than an extra few minutes beyond that to start to set. It will start form a ball if you let it go too long. Around the 10-15 minute mark it should start to look like soft serve.
- It is not recommended that you reduce or replace the sugar and honey with an alternative sweetener. Not only does the sugar play a role in the great flavor, but it is an important part of the texture.
Looking for more sweets & treats? Check out these recipes!
If you try this Fresh Strawberry Ice Cream or any of my other recipes tag me on Instagram @joymakersandco, I’d love to see what you make!
Fresh Strawberry Ice Cream
- 1 1.5 quart Kitchen Aid Ice-Cream Attachment or Ice Cream Machine of choice
- 16 ounces strawberries, fresh
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 cup white granulated sugar
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice, fresh or bottled
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 cup half & half
- 1 1/2 teaspoons clear vanilla flavoring, or vanilla extract
- Start by making sure the freezer bowl to your ice cream maker attachment is fully frozen, at least 24 hours in advance. Follow the directions to your machine if you are using something different.
- Clean and cut your strawberries into bite sized pieces. Add the sugar, honey, and lemon juice. Mix well to combine. Cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes so they can sweeten and release their juices.
- Blend or whisk the whipping cream, half & half, a pinch of salt, and vanilla for about 30 seconds, until light and frothy.
- Set up your attachment onto your mixer or your ice cream machine.
- Remove the bowl of strawberries from the fridge and mash into smaller pieces with a pastry cutter. Pour the cream mixture to the bowl. Mix well.
- Start the machine to STIR on the Kitchen Aid and slowly pour it in. Once you have the bowl filled. Flip the switch to speed 1 and set a timer for 10 minutes. I typically run my machine for 10-15 minutes at the most until it is soft serve consistency.
- Gently remove the ice cream with a silicone spatula and freeze in your container for at least 2 hours before serving.
- If it has been in the freezer for more than 2 hours, bring the container out of the freezer 10-15 minutes before serving and place on a cooling rack to help it soften
- Serve with cake, your favorite cookies, or sprinkles!
*Adapted from A Latte Food