Spring and summer intermingle in this simple vegan ice cream recipe
The sliver of time between Memorial Day and the official first day of summer is one of my favorite parts of the year. A little spring, a little summer… the season’s freshest berries intermingle with crisp sun-soaked mornings and increasingly lazy, increasingly humid afternoons. It’s a time when our palettes begin to shift slightly from spring’s bright produce to vibrant and zingy fruits and herbs, when we crave something refreshing and cooling to come down off a sweltering day.
Conveniently, it’s also when the neighborhood ice cream truck begins to post up on the corner of my block.
Inspired by the confluence of seasons and the incessant tolling of ice cream jingles, today I’m sharing a fresh take on vegan “n’ice cream”. Together with a coconut and banana base, spring’s finest strawberries swirl together with the first basil of summer to create a fruity and herbaceous treat. Whip up a batch to have handy on hot afternoons, or throw some in a bowl and top with granola and more fruit for a sweet and refreshing breakfast.
Vegan Strawberry Basil N’Ice Cream
*Read prep & timing notes below*
Coconut cream from 1 can of full-fat coconut milk *
4 tbsp coconut sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup coconut milk from the can
1/2 banana, frozen in chunks
3/4 cup fresh strawberries, stemmed, hulled and chopped
2 tbsp + 1 tbsp fresh basil, finely chopped
2 tbsp frozen strawberries, stemmed, hulled and chopped
Optional: Bee pollen (not vegan), honey (not vegan), or vegan sprinkles to top
Blender or food processor
Jars or ice pop molds
*Coconut cream prep: Do not shake the can of coconut milk prior to making the recipe. To allow the cream to separate, place the can of coconut milk upright in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours but to to overnight to allow the cream to rise to the top. Once chilled, use a can opener to open the can from the bottom and pour out the coconut water (you can save this for other recipes, too).
* *Mixer prep: Place the bowl and whisk of your stand mixer in the freezer for at least 15 minutes ahead of time.
Remove the chilled mixing bowl and whisk from your freezer and attach to the mixer. Scoop coconut cream into the mixing bowl and add coconut sugar and vanilla. Mix on high about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy and the texture of thick whipped cream (try not to eat it all… you will want to eat it all).
While the coconut cream is whipping, in a blender or food processor, combine the coconut milk, frozen banana, fresh strawberries, and 2 tbsp of the basil. Blend until combined. The mixture should be thick and the texture of soft serve.
Add the banana mixture to the coconut mixture and blend on high until fully incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Taste and add more coconut sugar, if desired. Once well mixed, use a spoon or rubber spatula to fold in the frozen chopped strawberries and the reserved 1 tbsp of finely chopped basil.
Pour the mixture into ice pop molds or a resealable container and pop in the freezer for at least 4 hours or until completely frozen. Once frozen, ice pops may be served immediately, otherwise, a larger container should be thawed at least 5-10 minutes before serving, lest you want to bend a perfectly good spoon. Top with bee pollen, sprinkles or other desired toppings.
+ How are you celebrating summer? Let us know in the comments!
More great vegan and vegetarian recipes from BLDG 25