Homemade Ice Cream

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This homemade ice cream has only three simple ingredients. They’re inexpensive and easy to find, and the best part is that you can add any mix-ins that your family enjoys.

Another perk? It doesn’t require an ice cream maker! All you need is a metal pan and an empty spot in your freezer to make this creamy homemade vanilla ice cream.

Scooping Home Made Ice Cream from metal loaf tin

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cold heavy cream
  • 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
No Churn Ice Cream Ingredients - See text for details

Freezing Homemade Ice Cream

Since we aren’t using an ice cream maker for this homemade vanilla ice cream, we’ll want it to set up and freeze quickly in the freezer. The best and easiest way to do this is by using a metal loaf pan.

A metal pan will chill and freeze the homemade ice cream more rapidly than a glass or ceramic loaf pan. I prefer to use metal so that my ice cream starts to harden more quickly, preventing spills and also allowing us to enjoy it as soon as possible!

Instructions

Here are all the steps you need to follow to create this luscious homemade ice cream. 

Step 1 – Chill the Loaf Pan

Chilling Metal Loaf Pan

Place the metal loaf pan in the freezer before you start preparing your ingredients. A chilled loaf pan will help the ice cream set up more quickly. This is also a good time to make sure your loaf pan will sit level and not spill or tip over onto any of your other frozen goods.

I also recommend chilling the bowl you’ll be whipping the cream in, in the fridge or freezer during this step.

Step 2 – Start the Base

Preparing no churn ice cream base

In a large bowl, whisk or stir together the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla extract, and salt. Stir until thoroughly combined and set aside.

Step 3 – Whip the Cream

Whipping cream for homemade ice cream

Pour the cold heavy cream into a large, chilled bowl and use a hand mixer to whip the cream into stiff peaks. 

A chilled bowl with cold heavy cream whips up more quickly and creates a lighter texture when beaten.

Step 4 – Incorporate Some Whipped Cream

Folding whipped cream into homemade ice cream

Take about 1 cup of the whipped cream and gently stir it into the sweetened condensed milk mixture. 

Step 5 – Mix Everything Together

Mix ingredients homemade ice cream

Take the sweetened condensed milk mixture and spoon about a third of it into the whipped cream. Gently fold it in. Repeat twice more until all of the sweetened condensed milk mixture has been incorporated into the whipped cream. Do not overmix. 

Step 6 – Pour and Chill

Home made ice cream in metal loaf tin ready to chill

Pour the homemade vanilla ice cream mixture into the chilled metal loaf pan and then place it in the designated spot in your freezer. Chill for 3-4 hours until it has set to your desired consistency. The shorter you freeze it, the more it will be like a soft-serve consistency. Longer freeze time makes a harder ice cream texture. 

I also recommend taking the ice cream out of the freezer about 5-10 minutes before serving it. It will be easier to scoop and serve if it has had a few minutes to soften.

Cookware Used

Hand Mixer: A hand mixer, or stand mixer with the whisk attachment, is a quick and easy way to beat your heavy cream to the desired consistency. 

Metal Loaf Pan: As mentioned above, metal is the best material to chill ice cream. A 9×5 loaf pan is an easy size to work with and makes for easy scooping once the ice cream is frozen. A loaf pan with a lid is also great for this recipe!

Silicone Spatula: A wide silicone spatula is the best tool to fold the whipped cream into the sweetened condensed milk. It’s also perfect for smoothing out the top when you pour it into the loaf pan.

When to Add Homemade Ice Cream Mix-Ins

If you’re adding in some mix-ins, like chocolate chips, cookie chunks, or candy, you will want to add them after the ice cream has chilled for about 2 hours. It should have a smooth, but thick consistency. 

There are two reasons you want to add the mix-ins after the ice cream has started to set. Adding them during the mixing process could affect the airiness of the whipped cream and result in a dense, less creamy texture.

After chilling for 2 hours, the thicker consistency also helps the mix-ins incorporate throughout the ice cream, rather than sink to the bottom of the loaf pan.

Homemade Ice Cream Flavors

This recipe is an excellent base for getting creative with homemade ice cream flavors. Below are a few more homemade ice cream variations, but there are hundreds more. 

Try adding different extracts, frozen berries, chopped candies, and even gummy bears or worms!

Chocolate Ice Cream

To make homemade chocolate ice cream, just add ½ cup of unsweetened cocoa powder into the sweetened condensed milk mixture before adding any whipped cream.

Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

For chocolate chip or chocolate chunk ice cream, simply fold 2 cups of chocolate chips of your choice into the ice cream after it’s chilled for about 2 hours.

You can also substitute the vanilla extract for 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract and add 4-5 drops of green food coloring to the sweetened condensed milk mixture to make mint chocolate chip!

Cookies and Cream Ice Cream

To make homemade cookies and cream ice cream, just add 25 crushed chocolate sandwich cookies to your ice cream once it has chilled for about 2 hours. 

How Long Does Homemade Ice Cream Last in the Freezer?

Once your homemade vanilla ice cream has chilled completely, it will last for about 2 weeks in an air-tight container in the freezer.

I keep mine in the loaf pan and wrap it in plastic wrap and then again in aluminum foil.

Now, It’s Your Turn!

Homemade ice cream in cone ready to eat

Hopefully, this quick and easy homemade ice cream recipe has inspired you to whip up your own batch! Use the original homemade vanilla ice cream recipe as a base to create some flavor combinations your family will love. 

Be sure to chill your loaf pan, use cold heavy cream, and don’t overmix the ingredients. You’ll have creamy, sweet (and no-churn!) ice cream in no time. 

Print

Homemade Ice Cream

With three simple ingredients, this homemade ice cream is easy to make. You don’t even need an ice cream maker.

  • Author: Beatriz Garcia
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3-4 hours
  • Total Time: 3 minute
  • Yield: 12 servings 1x
  • Cuisine: Dessert

Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 cups cold heavy cream
  • 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions

Chill the Loaf Pan & Bowl

Chill the bowl for the whipping cream in the fridge or freexer.

Place the metal loaf pan in the freezer before you start preparing your ingredients. 

Start the Base

In a large bowl, whisk or stir together the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla extract, and salt. Stir until thoroughly combined and set aside.

Whip the Cream

Pour the cold heavy cream into a large, chilled bowl and use a hand mixer to whip the cream into stiff peaks. 

Incorporate Some Whipped Cream

Take about 1 cup of the whipped cream and gently stir it into the sweetened condensed milk mixture. 

Mix Everything Together

Take the sweetened condensed milk mixture and spoon about a third of it into the whipped cream. Gently fold it in. Repeat twice more until all of the sweetened condensed milk mixture has been incorporated into the whipped cream. Do not overmix. 

Pour and Chill

Pour the homemade vanilla ice cream mixture into the chilled metal loaf pan and then place it in the designated spot in your freezer. Chill for 3-4 hours until it has set to your desired consistency. 

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