Gingerbread ice cream recipe served in two bowls
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5 from 2 votes

Gingerbread Ice Cream

This gingerbread ice cream is total decadence. You can enjoy it smooth or stir in crushed gingersnap cookies. Try using it to make gingerbread ice cream sandwiches. You can also serve it on top of your favorite holiday pies and cakes!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Inactive Time4 hrs 15 mins
Total Time4 hrs 30 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Gingerbread Ice Cream, Gingerbread Ice Cream Recipe
Servings: 8 servings (approximately 1 quart)
Calories: 310kcal
Author: Jennifer Farley


  • 2 cups half-and-half (or 50% whole milk + 50% heavy cream)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons blackstrap molasses
  • 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 2 1/2 ounces dark brown sugar (about 1/3 cup packed)
  • 2 1/2 ounces granulated sugar (about 1/3 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Optional: 1 1/2 - 2 cups gingersnap cookies, coarsely chopped


  • In a medium saucepan, whisk together the half-and-half, molasses, and vanilla, then bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
  • Meanwhile, vigorously whisk together the yolks, brown sugar and granulated sugar in a large bowl until thick and smooth (if any small lumps of brown sugar form, pinch them with your fingers to break them up). Whisk in ginger, cinnamon, pepper, and salt. Slowly whisk the hot liquid into the eggs, then pour everything back into the saucepan and set it over medium-low heat.
  • Using a wood spoon or heat-proof spatula, stir the mixture constantly until the ice cream base has thickened slighten and has reached a temperature of about 170 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer, about 4-6 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and pour through a fine mesh strainer into a clean bowl. Let the mixture cool for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, then press plastic wrap directly against the top of the ice cream base to prevent a skin from forming. Place in the refrigerator and chill until very cold, 4 hours or overnight.
  • Prepare ice cream in a machine according to manufacturer's instructions, then transfer to a container to finish freezing (I like to use a 9x5-inch loaf pan). If you’re stirring in chopped gingersnaps, add them while transferring the ice cream to the container, since it will be a soft serve consistency.


I found that molasses can do weird things to the ice crystals and prevent this recipe from freezing properly if you try to use my no-churn method. You need to use a machine with this recipe.
Also, keep the ice cream in the freezer for the same reason. Don’t leave it out on the counter, because once it thaws out, the texture can get a bit odd. As long as it stays frozen after churning, it’s perfect!


Calories: 310kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 201mg | Sodium: 83mg | Potassium: 208mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 835IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 119mg | Iron: 1mg