Ice Cream & Frozen Desserts

Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

4.54 from 160 votes
My Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream Recipe makes the simplest velvety, floral and creamy frozen dessert with no ice cream maker, easy and delicious!
A bowl of 3 scoops of the simplest velvety, floral and creamy frozen dessert vanilla ice Crean with no ice cream maker

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Hi Bold Bakers!

WHAT YOU GET: Rich and creamy Vanilla Ice Cream. My Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream recipe is the most smooth and simple dessert to make this summer. This recipe tastes even better than store-bought ice cream, but it only takes 10 minutes with no machine using just 4 ingredients and 4 tools.

While I love to get creative in the kitchen and come up with all kinds of bold flavors from Mint Chocolate Chip to Butter Pecan. At the end of the day, a classic Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream is my favorite flavor among all Frozen Dessert Recipes.

IMPORTANT NOTES: This recipe was improved and updated on 5/17/2023, to include more answers to the most frequently asked questions and Pro Chef Tips. 

Creamy homemade vanilla ice cream with vanilla seeds dispersed throughout, served in a glass bowl with a golden spoon on the left.

2-Ingredient Ice Cream Base

As always, the base for my Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream is the master recipe for my 2-Ingredient No Machine Ice Cream.

  • My game-changer Homemade Ice Cream recipe gets straight to the point with only heavy cream and condensed milk. It’s nothing short of ice cream heaven!
  • Comparatively, most ice cream recipes require tedious steps like making a custard base with whole milk and egg yolks and then churning the mixture in an ice cream maker to achieve the right texture.

Vanilla bean and vanilla extract elevated the ice cream base to be fans’ favorite.

Tools You Need to Make Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

Velvety Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream is stored in a paper ice cream tub, ready for the freezer.

What is Heavy Whipping Cream?

Heavy whipping cream or heavy cream is just natural FRESH CREAM skimmed from milk, with a fat content of around 36% to be able to whip up well.

The difference between heavy whipping cream and “all-purpose cream” is fat content.

  • “All-purpose cream” only has a fat content of 30% which is great for creating a creamy consistency for soups, desserts, or dips, but does not whip up well.
  • Hence, all-purpose cream can’t work well in this Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream recipe.

How do You Make Condensed Milk?

Sweetened condensed milk is super important for this recipe and there’s no substitute that can achieve the same good result. My Homemade Condensed Milk is simple to make with milk of your choice and natural sugar.

What Can be Substituted for Vanilla Beans?

For every medium-sized vanilla bean ranging from 4.75 inches to 6 inches,

  • substitute 1 tablespoon of pure vanilla extract, or
  • substitute 2 teaspoons of vanilla bean paste.

How Long Does Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream Last?

This Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream can be stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 6 weeks.

Gemma’s Pro Chef Tips For Making The Best Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream:

  • To make this ice cream less sweet:
    • You can reduce the condensed milk by around a quarter of what the recipe requires.
    • Note that reducing condensed milk essentially sugar can cause ice crema crystalizing. Sugar makes this ice cream scoop able when frozen.
    • ⅛-¼ teaspoon of salt will also reduce the sweetness.
  • Prevent ice cream from not setting properly by popping your condensed milk in the refrigerator before using it.
  • Be careful not to overwhip your whipping cream, otherwise, it will turn into butter and make your ice cream split with curds.
  • Make sure your freezer operates at -18C to properly set and freeze your ice cream.
  • Make my Signature Salted Caramel Sauce, Chocolate Ice  Cream Sauce, Raspberry Ice Cream Sauce, Butter hot fudge, or Macerated Blueberries.

A spoon taking out thick rich vanilla ice cream from a glass bowl

Enjoy More No-Machine Ice Cream:

Make More Ice Cream Flavors!

Get 100+ Ice Cream recipes at my Gemma’s Freezer Section Ice Cream Destination page!

IMPORTANT NOTES: This recipe was improved and updated on 5/17/2023, to include more answers to the most frequently asked questions and Pro Chef Tips. 

Gemma's Freezer Section Ice Cream Destination

Watch The Recipe Video!

Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

4.54 from 160 votes
My Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream Recipe makes the simplest velvety, floral and creamy frozen dessert with no ice cream maker, easy and delicious!
Servings: 2 pints
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
My Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream Recipe makes the simplest velvety, floral and creamy frozen dessert with no ice cream maker, easy and delicious!
Servings: 2 pints


  • 2 cups (16oz/450 ml ) cold heavy whipping cream (all purpose cream or heavy cream)
  • 14 ounces (1 can/ 400ml) cold sweetened condensed milk (fat-free or regular)
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 vanilla bean pod


  • Using a hand or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment whip the cold cream on medium/ high speed until soft peaks form.
  • Turn off the machine and pour the condensed milk into the whipped cream.
  • Turn the speed up to high and whisk until the mixture is thick and stiff peaks form. Turn off the machine and stir in vanilla extract.
  • Carefully scrape the seeds out of one vanilla bean pod. Add the seeds to your ice cream base and give it a mix.
  • Transfer your vanilla ice cream mixture to an air-tight sealable container and freeze for a minimum of 6 hours or overnight before eating.
  • Keep stored in the freezer for up to 6 weeks.


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2 years ago

Hi, I made your vanilla ice cream and it was sooo good and creamy. And as much as I like condensed milk, it was a little too sweet for me. Can I put just half the can or 3/4 of the milk? Will it change the consistency? Thank you

Renee LaFortune
Renee LaFortune
4 years ago

Hi Gemma!

I make ice cream (from your basic recipe) every couple of days. It has become the staple “go-to” dessert in my house – everybody LOVES it, no matter what flavour. Store bought substitutes are no longer acceptable alternatives! LOL! ANyway I want to make COFFEE ice cream. I saw your recipe for the dairy-free version but I want to make a cream and condensed milk, coffee ice cream. What do I do? Use instant coffee granules? Brewed coffee?

4 years ago

Can you replace the vanilla pod with the extract if we can’t afford it?

MilseanSweets Ally
3 years ago

Made this a few times and each time I make it my husband wants to eat all of it himself! This time I made mint chocolate chip and his response was “I just wanna give Gemma a hug!” So thank you for this recipe!

Aline Trve K.
3 years ago

Hi! I tried this recipe and it tasted amazing. My only problem is that after I took it out of the freezer, the texture felt odd. It didn’t feel airy like ice cream and felt a bit too dense. How do I make it less dense/airier next time?

Monica Gatt.
Monica Gatt.
4 years ago

Hi Gemma here in Australia our condensed milk comes in 350 gram cans will that be enough for the ice cream or should I buy another can to make it equal 400 grams. Thankyou.

sierra h
sierra h
4 years ago

Please please PLEASE make a recipe for cake batter ice cream (like the one from coldstone creamery).

Terisa Behara
Terisa Behara
5 years ago

Hi Emma I have tried the ice cream base using whipping cream and condensed milk post that added different flavoured essence and kept in freezer. Everything went well the texture is soft and creamy. However, the ice isn’t set despite of freezing it for 2 days it’s still creamy. I am still wondering where is the problem. My family says it’s good but tasting like a pastry cream. What should I do to get the binding

10 months ago

I finally made vanilla ice cream yesterday. When I tried it this morning, it was crumbly. I think I over whipped the cream. Does that sound right? Taste was great, though.

11 months ago

Hi Gemma,

This recipe looks delicious! Can I make it using a regular ice cream machine as well?


Keran Johnson
Keran Johnson
11 months ago

My daughter and I made this over Memorial Day weekend. We didn’t have any vanilla pods, so we crushed some oreos after removing the middle icing to our creamy mix. This is the smoothest, easiest and most tasty ice cream ever. Yummers 😋 Greatest return on effort ever!!

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About Us

Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, a cookbook author, and the creator of Bigger Bolder Baking. I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere with my trusted and tested recipes and baking tips. You may have seen one of my 500+ videos on YouTube & TikTok or as a guest judge on Nailed It! on Netflix or the Best Baker in America on Food Network. No matter your skills, my Bold Baking Team & I want to be your #1 go-to baking authority.


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