How to Make Fried Ice Cream at Home

Fried ice cream with chocolate on a plate. Fried ice cream is a delicious dessert. It seems complicated, but the truth is its a great way to impress your family and friends without having the skills of a gourmet chef. Once you know how easy fried ice cream is to make from scratch, you’ll want to serve it at all your family get-togethers. It’s so tasty, it’s bound to be a hit anytime you want a sweet treat, and it’s easy to adjust the amount to make a little or a lot. It’s also very customizable, so you’ll never get bored.

What is Fried Ice Cream?

Fried ice cream is a scoop of ice cream that has been breaded and then deep-fried. It gets its namesake from the fact that it is, in fact, ice cream that has been fried, as contradictory as that sounds. Most recipes use corn flakes for coating. However, different ethnic recipes often call for tortillas, cookie crumbs, or tempura batter as the coating.

How is Fried Ice Cream Made?

Fried ice cream is scooped and then put back in the freezer. It’s then rolled in the breading. Oftentimes, egg whites are used so the coating stays on. It’s then dropped in oil for 10-15 seconds until the breading is a golden-brown color.

Why Doesn’t It Melt?

There are a few factors at play. First, the ice cream is at a low temperature before it is fried, so the temperature has to increase before it begins to melt. The next question is how does dropping it in hot oil not raise the temperature enough for it to melt anyway? The coating on the outside of the ice cream insulates it from the heat. This is why the coating will cook, but the ice cream doesn’t. Lastly, the ice cream is only exposed to the heat for a very short amount of time, not enough for the heat to get through the insulated coating.

Breading Options

Once you’ve tried your hand at making fried ice cream, you can test different breading options if you wish. For our purposes, we will stick with the tried and true cornflakes breading.

Cornflakes

Cornflakes are a breakfast staple. However, they are also used in many breading recipes. They provide a crispy light breading and don’t require a long frying time. This makes them excellent to use in fried ice cream. You can use Frosted Flakes for a sweeter taste, or store-brand corn flakes if you desire to be more economical. You can also find gluten-free brands.

Coconut

Coconut is often added to cornflake breading. The deep-frying gives the coconut a nutty toasted flavor, and adds a little sweetness as well. It can make fried ice cream feel a little classier or more indulgent. It can also add to the attractiveness and texture of the breading. If you enjoy coconut, it’s a great addition to your basic fried ice cream.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon is a wonderful addition as well. It can be sprinkled on the crushed cornflakes before breading the ice cream. The spicy, smoky, sweet flavor of cinnamon stands out well and can add contrast to your dish. It also adds a little savor, and its aromatic properties will have your mouth watering before you’ve finished plating.

Chocolate sauce in a bowl being whisked. One of the wonderful things about your basic fried ice cream recipe is all the customization options. You can truly tailor it to your style, and change it up anytime you wish. It allows you to experiment based on your preferences – or even during different seasons.

Whipped Cream

Whipped cream goes hand in hand with ice cream, including the fried variety. Whipped cream is a staple in many desserts. It can add a light sweet flavor and airy texture to your fried ice cream. It looks beautiful as well, making it an even more delicious idea. Whipped cream pairs well with literally any dessert item, so no matter how you choose to make your fried ice cream, whipped cream can make a great addition.

You can purchase whipped cream from the store or make your own. The advantage of homemade whipped cream is you can make it as sweet as you want, control how light it is, and you know exactly what the ingredients are.

Making Your Own Whipped Cream

You can make your own whipped cream easily at home. Once you try it, you’ll never buy the store-bought variety again!

Ingredients

How to Make It

Chill your bowl and whisk in the freezer for at least 20 minutes. Take it out when you are ready to make your whipped cream. Add two tablespoons sugar to the bowl. Add 1 cup heavy whipping cream. Beat at high speed for 1-3 minutes until stiff peaks start to form. Don’t overbeat or it will end up with a buttery consistency. Chill any unused whipped cream in a whipped cream dispenser. It’s that easy.

Honey

Honey makes a great topping for fried ice cream. Its golden sweetness makes it an indulgent treat, but it has many health benefits as well. Honey is sweeter than sugar, so a little goes a long way, especially with an already sweet dessert. Honey offers antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, which can make your dish a bit healthier. Like whipped cream, honey blends well with most other dessert flavors.

Chocolate

Chocolate is another excellent topping. However, chocolate has a strong distinctive flavor. You may want to limit the other additions if you choose to use chocolate so your flavors aren’t competing. Chocolate is both sweet and bitter, so it can add complexity to your fried ice cream.

Making Your Own Chocolate Sauce

Making your own chocolate sauce can be a fun and rewarding experience. Many people prefer the taste of homemade sauce over the store-bought variety.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

How to Make It

Mix the cocoa powder and sugar together in a saucepan until all lumps are gone. Then add the salt and water. Bring to a boil over medium heat and then reduce to a simmer, stirring constantly. Remove from heat after about 30 seconds and add the vanilla.

Caramel

Caramel is an excellent topping as well. It blends well with coconut or whipped cream, or on its own drizzled over the top of your fried ice cream. Caramel can add a rich indulgent flavor everyone will love.

Making Caramel Sauce

If you don’t want to buy caramel topping from the store, you can make your own. This caramel sauce has an amazing flavor and a fresh taste you won’t find in store-bought varieties.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup milk

How to Make

Bring brown sugar, butter, and milk to a boil over medium heat for one to two minutes. Remove from heat once it thickens. You can add salt for a salted caramel flavor or vanilla for a more classic flavor if you wish.

Fried Ice Cream Recipes

Fried ice cream in a cone bowl with whipped cream and cherry. Fried ice cream is deceptively simple yet looks elegant and complicated and make.

Basic Fried Ice Cream

This classic recipe is great way to try out fried ice cream for the first time.

Ingredients

  • 1 quart vanilla ice cream
  • 3 cups crushed cornflakes
  • 3 egg whites
  • 2 quarts oil
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)

How to Make

Scoop the ice cream into 1/2 cup size balls. Place them on a baking sheet or plate and put them into the freezer until they are firm (approximately one hour). Whisk the egg whites until they are foamy. Roll the ice cream in the egg whites, then the cornflakes until they are completely coated. If it isn’t coated completely, repeat the process.

Place back into the freezer for at least 3 hours, or until you are ready to cook and serve. When you are ready to fry them, heat the oil to 375 degrees, or medium heat. Place them in the oil one or two at a time using a frying basket or a metal slotted spoon. Leave them in the oil for 10-30 seconds until a golden brown color is achieved, then remove from the oil. Place them on paper towels to drain.

Add toppings if desired and serve.

Tempura Fried Ice Cream

This method is a bit more complicated and it has a different flavor. This version is commonly served in Asia. In addition to vanilla ice cream, matcha and red bean ice creams can be used if you are adventurous.

Ingredients

  • 1 quart ice cream
  • 11 oz pound cake (2 loaves)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup cold water
  • Oil for frying

How to Make

Scoop out the ice cream into balls, 1/2 cup or smaller. Freeze for one hour. Slice the pound cake into 1/2 inch slices. Place 3 slices of pound cake on a sheet of plastic wrap and roll flat with a rolling pin. Wrap the ice cream balls in the pound cake making sure the ice cream is completely covered. Place back in the freezer for at least 3 hours, or until prepared to cook and serve.

Mix the flour, egg, and water to make the tempura batter. Heat oil to 375 degrees. Coat the ice cream balls in the tempura batter, then drop in the oil for 10-30 seconds, or until golden brown. Place on paper towels to drain. Add any desired toppings and serve.

No Fry “Cheater Method”

If you are nervous about attempting to fry ice cream or just prefer to avoid the extra calories, you can opt for the “cheater” version. No frying required.

Ingredients

  • 1-quart ice cream
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 2 cups crushed corn flakes
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)

How to Make

Scoop ice cream into 1/2 cup scoops and place them on baking sheet. Put in the freezer for at least one hour. While the scoops are in the freezer, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon if desired. Add cornflakes. Spread on a large ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for 4-6 minutes or until golden brown. Remove and let cool.

Take the ice cream scoops out and roll them in the cornflake mixture. Place back into the freezer for at least an hour, until ready to serve. Add toppings if desired. This method allows you to make them ahead and keep them in the freezer until you are ready to serve.

These are just a few fried ice cream recipes available. You can find even more in an ice cream cookbook.

Conclusion

Fried ice cream on a plate with a spoon. Fried ice cream is a fun and tasty treat great for any time of the year. Its versatility allows you to customize it to fit your taste, or the season. Make it simple or add extra breading and topping options for a truly indulgent dessert sure to impress anyone. Happy frying!