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Homemade Vanilla Bean Ice Cream Recipe

The 1 Frozen Dessert You Should Attempt at Least Once in Your Life

Just like pancakes or roasted chicken, vanilla bean ice cream is one of those basic recipes you shouldn't live without mastering . . . well, or trying at least once. This particular recipe hails from Martha Stewart and involves the traditional method of forming a custard from milk, cream, sugar, egg yolks, and vanilla bean. The thick and creamy custard churns in an ice cream maker, but it needs a few more hours in the freezer before it's ready to scoop up, so plan accordingly! Though it's simple, vanilla bean ice cream makes for an incredible Summer dessert which should be paired with chocolate candies (as pictured), a slice of pie, or even freshly chopped berries.

Vanilla Ice Cream

Vanilla Ice Cream

Vanilla Ice Cream


2 vanilla beans, split lengthwise and scraped
2 cups whole milk
6 large egg yolks
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the vanilla beans and scrapings with the milk. Bring to a gentle boil. Remove from heat, and let steep, covered, 30 minutes.
  2. Prepare an ice bath; set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg yolks and sugar on medium-high speed until thick and pale, about 4 minutes.
  4. Place milk mixture over medium-high heat; bring just to a simmer. Slowly pour about 1/4 cup hot-milk mixture into egg-yolk mixture, beating on low speed until blended. Continue adding milk, about 1/2 cup at a time, beating until incorporated after each addition.
  5. Return mixture to saucepan; stir with a wooden spoon over low heat until mixture is thick enough to coat back of spoon, 3 to 5 minutes. Custard should retain a line drawn across the back of the spoon with your fingertip.
  6. Remove pan from heat; stir in chilled cream to stop cooking. Pour custard through a fine sieve into a medium bowl set in ice bath; let stand, stirring occasionally, until chilled.
  7. Stir in extract. Freeze in an ice-cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  8. Transfer to an airtight container and freeze for at least 4 hours, or overnight until ice cream sets.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Anna Monette Roberts
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