The Right Amount of Tart & Sweet for the Perfect Summer Treat
A big thanks to GiftsForYouNow.com for sponsoring this Lemon Vanilla Ice Cream Recipe. All opinions are my own.
As the saying goes: When life gives you lemons…make a creamy, homemade Lemon Ice Cream. Just the right amount of sweet and tart for the perfect summer treat that’s easy to make and quick to whip up. Serve it up on a sugar cone or in a glass of lemon-lime soda for a refreshing summer ice cream float.
Lemon Vanilla Ice Cream
I love creating ice cream recipes with my kids! One summer I even helped my son create his own “ice cream truck.” We made three custom flavors and he had a blast sharing them around the neighborhood.
This lemon ice cream recipe was inspired by National Ice Cream month and Eve’s new custom ice cream bowl. It was a great way to teach her how to make her own custom ice cream flavor.
We decided on “lemonade” flavor, with a creamy vanilla base.
I’m especially fond of the idea of Lemon Vanilla Ice Cream, because my grandmother and mother would always add a couple of drops of lemon extract to their homemade ice cream.
How to Make Lemon Ice Cream
For our version of lemon ice cream, I decided to take that flavor up a notch using real lemons. I have to say, the results were amazing!
The key to really getting that lemon flavor is to use the zest of the lemons. Be sure to use a micro-plane grater so you don’t end up with any big pieces of lemon zest in your ice cream.
First, I whisked together my standard ice cream base: 2 cups of heavy cream, 1 cup of whole milk, and 3/4 cup of sugar.
For the lemon flavor, I cut one small lemon in half, and used the end of my whisk to extract the lemon juice from the whole lemon. Removing any seeds, I poured the juice (about 1/4 cup) into the mixture.
Next, I finely grated half of the lemon and added it to the mixture. If you only have a regular grater, but you’ll want to be very careful not to include any of the lemon’s bitter white pith.
There are many ways you can make ice cream after this step, but I love to use the ice cream maker we got for our wedding nearly 15 years ago. It’s officially the last working appliance we were gifted, and we absolutely love it.
Once everything was whisked together, I poured the mixture into my ice cream maker and let it do its thing.
It only took about 25 minutes for the ice cream to thicken up and be ready to eat.
The result is lemon ice cream perfection.
Serve it up on a sugar cone, or in a glass of lemon-lime soda for a refreshing summer ice cream float.
Or, of course, your own personalized ice cream mug. Having your name on the dish means you don’t have to share, obviously.
More Lemon Ice Cream Ideas
While we went the classic route with our lemon ice cream, there are so many ways you can change up this recipe.
If you want a more intense lemon flavor, try using the zest of two lemons instead of just one.
Or, for a fun twist on classic lemonade, mix in some blueberries to make a blueberry lemon ice cream.
Add a pump of lavender syrup to make a lemon lavender ice cream.
For a more savory take, try mixing in some chopped fresh basil to make a lemon basil ice cream.
Add a scoop of vanilla lemon ice cream between two lemon cookies to make a fun lemon ice cream sandwich.
Making lemon ice cream is a delicious and easy way to create your own custom summer treat. Whether you want something light, refreshing and fruity or are looking for dessert with a little more depth of flavor, there’s no shortage of ways to make it your own.
From the classic recipe that we shared here to some savory ideas like adding fresh basil, the options are endless. So get creative, have fun, and enjoy a scoop of your very own lemon ice cream!