No-churn ice cream recipes are more popular than ever this year, and for good reason. If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can still make delicious, creamy homemade ice cream in any flavor you like, with limitless options for add-ins. For today’s caramel brownie sundae ice cream recipe, I swirled in caramel sauce and chewy fudge brownies, and it was so, so good. It’s sweet and salty and creamy and rich, not to mention quick and easy to make.
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What is No-Churn Ice Cream?
There are two key ingredients in no-churn ice cream recipes: sweetened condensed milk and heavy whipping cream. The basic process involves whipping the cream until soft and thick and then folding in the sweetened condensed milk. The result is a very smooth, creamy and somewhat fluffy ice cream that is a bit sweet, although no sweeter than most store-bought ice creams. It’s really sweeter than I prefer, but that’s only because I make my homemade custard-based ice creams decidedly less sweet.
You can balance the sugar by the other ingredients you add for flavor and texture. A a little salt, a spoonful of peanut butter, tart berries. Even better, add something bitter like espresso powder, cocoa powder or dark chocolate (enter brownies). I think that no-churn chocolate ice cream is especially great, since the chocolate so nicely balances out the sweetness.
No Churn Ice Cream vs. Custard-Based Ice Cream
Most ice cream connoisseurs would agree that custard-based churned ice creams are superior in both flavor and texture to no-churn recipes. And it really is hard to beat the rich complexity of custard that’s been slowly churned. Whipped cream and sweetened condensed milk might be kind of basic, but that said, if you don’t have an ice cream maker, then the no-churn methods are a great alternative! I make them often, just to be able to have homemade ice cream faster.
Another bonus to making no-churn ice cream is to avoid the use of egg yolks, which leaves me with extra whites. Of course, I never throw out extra egg whites, but always freeze them to use later in white cakes and meringues.
- Heavy Whipping Cream
- Vanilla Extract
- Coarse Kosher Salt
- Sweetened Condensed Milk
- Caramel Sauce
So first, you’ll need to make (or buy) some brownies! Speaking of brownies, I’ve been re-testing my favorite fudge brownies recipe this month, and they’re better than ever. So fudgey and moist, with a pretty crackly top. If you don’t already have a favorite brownies recipe, I hope you give mine a go! They’re fantastic, and I can’t stop making them.
This recipe for caramel brownie sundae ice cream uses maybe half a pan of leftover crumbled brownies. So make them, eat some, and save the rest for the ice cream. You won’t be sorry.
For the caramel sauce, this time I just bought a jar of salted caramel sauce to keep things easy on myself. Now, of course you can make your own, and it would be fantastic. I have a great recipe for homemade salted caramel sauce.
Once you have your brownies and caramel sauce ready to go, you can make your ice cream. Start by whipping the cream, vanilla and salt until soft peaks form. Then fold in the sweetened condensed milk.
Layer and Swirl it all Together.
When adding in extras like crumbled brownies, drizzles of caramel sauce, toffee bits, chopped chocolate, etc, I like to layer, rather than mix everything into the ice cream. By layering ice cream and extras in your ice cream containers, not only will everything be better distributed, but you’ll get those lovely ribbons of caramel and chocolate throughout. I sprinkled a little espresso powder right on top of the ice cream, too, which was just fantastic.
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Caramel Brownie Sundae No Churn Ice Cream
All recipes on Curly Girl Kitchen are developed for high altitude at 5,280 feet.
- Electric Mixer (Stand or Hand-Held)
- 2 cups cold heavy whipping cream
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp coarse Kosher salt (if using table salt, use half the amount)
- 14 oz sweetened condensed milk
- 2 cups crumbled fudge brownies (about 9 ounces)
- ½ cup caramel sauce
- In a large bowl, beat the cream, vanilla and salt with an electric mixer until soft thick peaks form. Fold in the sweetened condensed milk until well combined.
- Measure 1/3 of the cream mixture into your ice cream container/s. Top with 1/3 of the brownies and 1/3 of the caramel sauce. Repeat layering two more times. Use a butter knife to gently swirl everything together.
- Cover and freeze until firm, about 6-8 hours.