Today is National Ice Cream Day, and I thought we would celebrate with a homemade version of a favorite: dairy-free oat milk ice cream! Unlike other homemade oat milk ice cream recipes, this delicious frozen dessert focuses on dairy-free specifically. It’s made with a rich, creamy custard-style base, but is still lighter than your average scoop. And we love that it’s churned with simple, clean, everyday ingredients. You can make more than a quart (nearly three pints!) for less than a few dollars!
Homemade Oat Milk Ice Cream that’s Deliciously Dairy Free!
This oat milk ice cream recipe was shared with us by Naturipe, a collective of berry growers in the Americas. They use it as a base for making berry oat milk ice cream. You can find their strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries at numerous grocery stores across the U.S. In addition to the recipe, we’ve added answers to anticipated FAQs.
How Do I Make the Berry Version of this Oat Milk Ice Cream?
The base recipe is for plain dairy-free oat milk ice cream, but there are options for vanilla, strawberry, and other berry add-ins! See the recipe notes for these variations. If you do opt for berries, be sure to use sweet, ripe berries.
Why is Bourbon Added in the Berry Options?
berries can get very hard when frozen. Alcohol doesn’t freeze, so adding just a touch helps keep the berries a little softer. You can use another type of dairy-free alcohol if you don’t have bourbon on hand.
Can I Make this Oat Milk Ice Cream without an Ice Cream Maker?
The results won’t be as creamy, but you can definitely use other freezing methods if you don’t have an ice cream machine. See this guide: How to Make Dairy-Free Ice Cream without an Ice Cream Maker.
How Should I Use the Leftover Egg Whites?
In another dairy-free recipe! We like these Peanut Butter Cookies, Sweet Potato Muffins, Pantry Granola Bars, Homemade Marshmallows, and of course, Meringues. Or you can toss them into a homemade scramble or omelet, or use them for an egg wash when baking breads or crusts.
Can I Use Whole Eggs instead of Yolks?
Yes, you can use 2 whole eggs in place of the 4 egg yolks. The yolks provide more richness, but they also have a more prominent egg flavor.
What Can I Substitute for the Egg?
If you want egg-free and vegan oat milk ice cream, I recommend substituting 1/4 cup cornstarch or arrowroot starch for the egg yolks. Start with cold oat milk. Whisk the sugar, starch, salt, and a little bit of the oat milk together until the starch dissolves. Then whisk in the rest of the oat milk, and continue with the recipe.
Can I Use a Different Milk Alternative?
You can, but it won’t be oat milk ice cream! Feel free to use this recipe for almond milk ice cream, macadamia nut milk ice cream, etc. Some types of milk alternatives will separate, curdle, or thicken oddly when heated. Using a brand with minimal ingredients and without added protein helps.
Can I Use a Different Sweetener?
The cleanest tasting alternative will be agave nectar. But we also love honey, maple syrup, brown sugar, or coconut sugar in dairy-free oat milk ice cream. These types will add their own flavor influences.
Will a Sugar-Free Sweetener Work?
In my opinion, it will not. Sugar is a key component to creating ice cream that is soft. This is why most low sugar dairy-free ice cream brands use an array of additives to help with the consistency. If you use a sugar-free sweetener, expect harder, denser results.
Where Do I Get Cashew Butter?
It’s available at most grocery stores, but is more readily found at natural food stores and online. It’s also easy to make your own. You can simply grind 2/3 cup raw unsalted cashews in your food processor or spice grinder until it turns into nut butter. It will grind into a powder first and then begin to clump as the oils release. Or, soak raw unsalted cashews in boiling water for 1 hour, drain, and blend in your food processor or blender until it turns into nut butter.
Can I Use Peanut Butter instead of Cashew Butter?
You can, but it will have a more pronounced taste, and be a little more like peanut butter ice cream. Cashews have a more neutral, lightly sweet taste that provides more of a flavor base rather than an overt flavor.
Can I Use Almond Butter instead of Cashew Butter?
Yes, almond butter is a suitable substitute, but it will lend a slightly more pronounced flavor to this dairy-free oat milk ice cream.
How Can I Make Nut-Free Oat Milk Ice Cream?
You can substitute sunflower seed butter for the cashew butter. It will lend a more pronounced taste to the ice cream, but is still tasty.
Special Diet Notes: Oat Milk Ice Cream
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, optionally gluten-free, peanut-free, soy-free, and vegetarian. for strict gluten-free needs, choose certified gluten-free oat milk. For nut-free, egg-free, and vegan options, see the FAQ section above. If you confuse eggs with dairy, you’re not alone! See this post: Are Eggs Dairy?
- ⅔ cup sugar
- 4 egg yolks
- 3 cups oat milk
- Pinch salt
- ⅓ cup cashew butter
- If using and ice cream maker with a removable bowl, make sure it has been in the freezer for at least 24 hours.
- Place the sugar and egg yolks in a medium saucepan, and whisk until the sugar is dissolved and the egg yolks are lighter in color. Whisk in the oat milk and salt.
- Place the saucepan over medium-low heat, and cook, while stirring, until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon. Do not allow it to come to a boil.
- Remove the pan from the heat.
- Put the cashew butter in a heat safe bowl, and whisk in some of the hot custard until the cashew butter is smooth and thin. Pour the cashew mixture into the custard and whisk until smooth.
- Optionally strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a container. Let it cool, then refrigerate the mixture for at least 2 hours.
- Process the cold mixture in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Serve the oat milk ice cream immediately or pack it into a freezer-safe container and freeze for 4 hours or more for hard-packed ice cream. Let the ice cream soften at room temperature for about 15 minutes before scooping.
Strawberry Option: Place 2 cups finely chopped fresh strawberries, 2 teaspoons sugar, and 1 teaspoon bourbon in a small bowl, and toss to combine. Let the berries macerate at room temperature for about 1 hour. Lightly smash or pulse the berries with a stick blender or food processor to break up any large chunks. Refrigerate the berries while the oat milk mixture refrigerates. Stir the berries into the oatmilk mixture before processing it in your ice cream maker, or add the berries as it churns.
Other Berry Options: Follow the directions for the Strawberry Option, but you can substitute blueberries, blackberries, or raspberries. If using blackberries or raspberries, press the berries through a fine mesh sieve to remove the little seeds. For blueberries, lightly smash the berries and combine with the sugar and bourbon.