This homemade Peppermint Ice Cream is so tasty that
Santa might just skip the cookies this year!
Back when I was in high school, our next-door neighbor always made us a container of homemade peppermint ice cream for Christmas. We could count on it showing up a couple of days before Christmas every year…and we loved it! A little bowl of ice cream while sitting next to the fire and visiting with family was pretty much the definition of the holidays. Even when I went off to college, I still looked forward to coming back home for Christmas and finding a container of that ice cream in the freezer.
My mother recently moved from Raleigh to live near my little sis (and her new baby!) in Nashville. This means I can get a two-for-one visit whenever I head down to Nashville…but it also means we don’t have neighbors who make homemade peppermint ice cream for us anymore. So this year, I decided to make my own.
Peppermint Ice Cream
For this ice cream, I scaled back on the peppermint flavor just slightly. It’s there, but eating a bowl of this peppermint ice cream won’t make you feel like you just ate a tube of toothpaste. In short, this ice cream is delicious! In fact, I think Santa might just pass right by the plate of cookies and go straight for this ice cream in your freezer this year. (How’s that for a mental image? …walking in and seeing Santa digging around in your freezer in the middle of the night…)
If you haven’t noticed, I’m a big fan of homemade ice cream. Who says that Spring and Summer get to have all of the ice cream love? There are just too many awesome seasonal flavors in the Fall and Winter. Take this Pumpkin Ice Cream for instance. You can’t have Pumpkin Ice Cream in July. Or Eggnog Ice Cream. Who’s heard of Eggnog Ice Cream in the middle of the summer? I’m not suggesting that you ditch the Christmas cookies or anything crazy like that. I’m just saying that ice cream feels a little left out at the holidays. We don’t want anyone feeling left out, right?
Did you make a batch of this Peppermint Ice Cream? Leave a comment or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog). I’d love to see your version!
Peppermint Ice Cream
- 1½ cups half-and-half
- 4 egg yolks
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ Tbsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp peppermint extract
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/3 cup candy canes crushed (~3-4 candy canes) + more for garnishing
- In a medium saucepan, heat the half-and-half over medium-low heat until it just begins to simmer.
- While the half-and-half is heating, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar in a medium bowl.
- Remove the hot half-and-half from the stove and gradually pour it into the egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly as you pour.
- Return the mixture to the saucepan and heat over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a wooden spoon (~4-5 minutes).
- Remove the mixture from the stove and pour through a fine mesh strainer into a clean container. (Tip: Use a spoon or spatula to help push the mixture through the strainer.)
- Add the vanilla extract, peppermint extract and heavy cream to the strained mixture; stir until well combined. Cover mixture with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic directly onto the surface of the mixture. Refrigerate overnight.
- Pour the ice cream mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s directions. About 5 minutes before the ice cream is done (while it’s solid, but still soft), add the crushed candy canes.
- Place the finished ice cream into the freezer to harden for at least 4-6 hours before serving.
- Garnish with additional crushed candy canes before serving (optional).
Looking for more tasty ice cream recipes? Check out these other favorites, too: