We’re lactose intolerant but we love ice cream in my house, so we eat a lot of coconut ice cream. I know that not everyone likes the flavor of coconut, though, so last time I felt like making ice cream I decided I’d try my hand at another type of ice cream. I had some raw cashews in my freezer, so I figured, why not make cashew milk ice cream? I wasn’t sure how strong the cashew flavor would be, so I decided I’d start with chocolate cashew milk ice cream, since chocolate does a great job of competing with other strong flavors.
The result? This chocolate cashew milk ice cream is delicious! It’s super creamy and has great chocolate flavor. I personally prefer coconut ice cream, mostly because I really like the health benefits that coconut offers, but I would definitely make this ice cream if I wanted to serve dessert to friends or family who aren’t big fans of coconut. If you want to experiment with a different sort of dairy-free ice cream, I’d recommend giving this a try!
What if I Don’t Have an Ice Cream Maker?
I get this question from time to time. Honestly my first response is: get an ice cream maker! 🙂 Seriously. If you like dairy-free ice cream and think you’ll make it regularly, an ice cream maker is 100% a worthwhile investment. We got this model for our wedding in 2008, and it probably made a few hundred batches of ice cream before it finally gave out in 2016.
I replaced it with this newer model, which I’ve been very happy with. My family LOVES ice cream, and since Jesse can’t eat any sweeteners other than honey, homemade ice cream is our only option. (Plus, have you seen the cost of cashew ice cream in the store? That stuff is expensive.)
If I haven’t convinced you, though, here’s a post from The Kitchn on how to make ice cream without a machine. Give some of their ideas a try and see what you think. I haven’t tried any of these methods myself, so I can’t comment on how well they’d work for this particular recipe.
Equipment You’ll Need
- 2 cups raw cashews
- 2 cups water, plus extra for soaking your cashews
- 1/3 plus 1/4 cup raw honey
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
- A pinch of salt, plus 1/2 tablespoon for soaking your cashews
- Since raw cashews contain some antinutrients that make them hard to digest, I started by soaking my cashews. Cover your 2 cups of cashews with filtered water, then add 1/2 tablespoon of salt. Don't soak your cashews for more than six hours, as they can become slimy. I soaked mine for about three hours.
- Once your cashews are done soaking, drain them and rinse well.
- Add your cashews to your blender, then add two cups of water. Blend until your cashews become cashew milk. In my high-powered blender, this only took a minute or two.
- Add the honey, cocoa powder, vanilla extract and salt to your blender and blend to combine.
- Pour mixture into your ice cream maker. Process until the ice cream reaches your desired consistency. Serve ice cream immediately, or move to the freezer for a few hours to firm up.
- Store leftover ice cream in the freezer, ideally in a shallow container to simplify future defrosting.
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