Make my Homemade Soft Serve Ice Cream recipe and you’ll enjoy creamy, smooth vanilla soft serve just like you get in an ice cream shop and without the machine!
Hi Bold Bakers!
Sometimes I come up with some recipes that make even me question my own sanity…but this recipe is different. This is a brand new, fun and crazy way to make ice cream…not just ice cream actually, homemade soft serve ice cream to be exact. That creamy, swirly deliciousness that you get as a treat on a hot Summer’s day can now be made at home.
So let me just put on my lab coat and glasses because this is more scientific than I usually get, plus I look good in glasses.
Let’s get to the big question: “How can you make soft serve at home?” Dry ice is the secret ingredient. Dry ice is frozen carbon dioxide (CO2). It is colorless, with a neutral odor, non-flammable, and slightly acidic. You’re probably happy to see the non-flammable in there. Me too.
Dry Ice is used primarily as a cooling agent. It holds a lower temperature than that of regular ice so it will stay frozen for a lot longer. It is frequently used to package items that must remain cold or frozen, such as ice cream or biological samples. It is also used to carbonate fizzy drinks. Another fun fact, it was very popular in Discos in the 90’s. It was cool, trust me.
What is the science behind this soft serve ice cream? As liquid evaporates, it gets cold. This effect, familiar to anyone who has been wet, happens because it takes energy to turn a liquid into a gas, and that energy comes from heat drawn out of the liquid. Don’t ask me how someone figured out that this is how you make ice cream.
Once your soft serve is whipped up it should be eaten pretty quickly. You can pop the bowl in the freezer for up to 1 1/2 hours. Whip it up again on the mixer if it froze a bit. Longer than this and it will freeze rock solid and lose all of its soft texture. Feel free to make your ice cream base up to 3 days in advance. It will hang out happily in the fridge.
I found this recipe on Chefsteps.com. This is a website I often frequent because they get into the details of the how and why, which I love. They just have all over great cooking and kitchen essentials that will help you round out your skills.
Where can you buy dry ice? In the U.S. you can find it in large supermarkets like Smart & Final, Costco, Safeway and Walmart. However every location and state is different so call ahead before you go looking to see if they stock it. Thanks to the internet you can also buy it online in the U.S. at where else but Dry Ice Delivered. Outside of the U.S., I suggest doing a Google search to see what is available to you.
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- 4 cups (32floz/900ml) milk, full fat*
- 1 Cup (8 oz/225g) sugar
- ⅔ Cup (5oz /142g) cream
- 3/4 cup (33/4oz/105g) dry milk powder
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract ,
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 900 g/ 2 lbs dry ice* (this has to be measured in weight and not cups)
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and use a hand blender to combine ingredients, about one minute. Just be sure to whisk away any clumps of milk powder that form in the mix. You can also use a blender.
Cover and reserve in the fridge until you’re ready to churn. It’s important to keep the ice cream base really cold.
Carefully transfer your dry ice to a clean tea towel or apron and wrap it up completely. Wear gloves when handling the dry ice as it is extremely cold.
With a heavy cast iron pan or a hammer, crush dry ice into a fine powder.
Transfer crushed dry ice to a plastic bowl or Tupperware container and pop back in the freezer until you are ready for it.
Pour your ice cream base into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, and begin mixing on medium speed.
Add dry ice one spoonful at a time. Allow foam and steam to dissipate, then add another spoonful.This takes around 5 minutes.
NOTE: Adding too much too fast will lead to a big pile of bubbling ice cream all over your work surface. Nobody wants that. Go slow. Seriously.
Keep adding spoonfuls of dry ice until the ice cream begins to thicken. When it does, increase mixing speed, continuing to add spoonfuls of dry ice until your ice cream is rich, thick, and creamy. (You may need less or slightly more; it depends on many different factors. So just go slow and eyeball it—when your ice cream looks like soft serve, it probably is!)
Store in the freezer until you’re ready to serve. Mix up the ice cream again and scoop it into a piping bag fitted with a large, round nozzle.
Pipe into your cones and enjoy straight away. It is best eaten that day. I don’t recommend freezing it overnight as it is hard to scoop later.
*best served within 2 hours of making, otherwise it will freeze rock solid.
I have not tried using a nut milk but I think it would work.
Dry ice: See where you can buy dry ice in the last paragraph of the post.
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Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I’m passionate about sharing my years of experience to show you how to make game-changing baking recipes with over-the-top results! Join more than 1 Million other Bold Bakers in the community for new video recipes every week!
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