How to Use an Ice Cream Maker + Recipes!

ice cream cone in hand, yellow background: ian dooley via unsplash

                                                                                                                                                          |photo: ian dooley via unsplash

I may have mentioned this before...IT'S HOT. That calls for ice cream. Homemade ice cream is crazy easy to make at home. Can you stir ingredients together? You can make homemade ice cream. 

cookie dough ice cream, on cone on marble surface

An ice cream maker is an essential kitchen tool in my book. This is the ice cream maker we have. It's simple without a bunch of bells and don't need bells and whistles to make ice cream. 

What I'm saying is...get one.

Let me share some helpful tips to make the most of your ice cream maker. 

pink ice cream in ice cream freezer bowl with separate bowl of chocolate sauce

1. Freeze your ice cream maker bowl: Most ice cream makers require you to freeze the bowl before use. Remember to freeze it for at least 24 hours before you make your ice cream. (Use an "oven glove" to move from the gets frigid!)

cooking ice cream custard base, coat back of spoon

2. Chill your ingredients: To make sure your ice cream freezes faster and has a smoother texture, chill all your ingredients before you start. Many ice creams start with a cooked custard base, so it's doubly important to chill that down before pouring into your ice cream maker bowl.

ice cream base in ice water bath

The easiest way to do this is to pop the ice cream mixture in the fridge for several hours. If you want to speed the process along, use an ice bath. 

ice cream freezer bowl

3. Line that freezer bowl with plastic wrap: The plastic wrap won't form a tight seal around the inside of the bowl, but it'll give it a little protection from the smell of last week's leftover garlicky spaghetti sauce. 

7-layer cookie ice cream

4. Follow the manufacturer's instructions: Every ice cream maker is different, so make sure you read the manufacturer's instructions for best practices for your particular model.

homemade vanilla bean frozen custard in waffle cone

5. Follow the specific recipe: Before starting a recipe, read through it in its entirety. Different ice creams may require different techniques.

6. Freeze the paddle: While making the ice cream base, freeze the churning paddle.

ice cream churning, from above

7. Don't overfill the machine: When you add your ice cream mixture to the machine, be careful not to overfill it. Some machines have a maximum fill line, so make sure to follow it to avoid a mess...and wasting precious ice cream! Most ice cream machines will churn about a quart of ice cream base.

bride's cake ice cream layered in container

making wedding cake ice cream, ice cream base and mixins

8. Chill mix-ins and add at the right time: Remember how we chilled our ice cream base? You'll want to chill your mix-ins as well. Add mix-ins in the last few minutes of churning, or if you want large, intact chunks or swirls of a sauce throughout, add it as you're scooping the ice cream into a freezer container.

chocolate peanut butte ice cream in plastic container with red lid

9. Freeze after churning: Once churned, the ice cream will be very soft. Scoop into freezer-safe containers. I like these paper, takeout ice cream containers if I'll be sharing, or these cute plastic ice cream containers if we're eating it all at home.

paper ice cream containers tied with twine

10. Cover with plastic wrap: To prevent freezer burn and the ice cream from picking up other flavors from the freezer, press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the top of the ice cream. Waxed paper will also work! 

chocolate ice cream in a cone: photo credit irene kredenets via unsplash

                                                                                                                        |photo: irene kredenets via unsplash

Go forth and make ice cream! 

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