This delicious ice cream will remind you of fall and winter. Swirls of caramel and bits of gingersnap cookies make it irresistible. Worth the wait.
Table of contents
❤️ Why you’ll love this recipe
- Deliciously spiced vanilla ice cream base. Warm cinnamon, sweet vanilla, and the perfect base ice cream recipe.
- Dreamy holiday flavors. Spiced cookie and rich caramel = a festive ice cream that isn’t made of the usual suspects. Cozy up by the fireplace with a bowl of this delicious ice cream in hand.
- Easy to make. Yes, there are a lot of steps. But honestly, reading the recipe makes it seem harder than it is. Once you’ve mastered basic homemade ice cream, you’ll see that tweaking and adding things is no biggie.
This is an overview of the ingredients. You’ll find the full measurements and instructions in the printable recipe at the bottom of the page.
Here’s what you’ll need to make this cool holiday treat:
- whole milk
- heavy cream
- granulated sugar
- vanilla extract
- egg yolks
- jarred caramel sauce
- crumbled gingersnaps
- ice cream machine
- loaf pan or another container for finished ice cream
- small saucepan
Step One: heat the milk, cream, and some of the sugar
Heat the milk and cream in a saucepan over medium heat. Add 1/2 cup of sugar, salt, cinnamon, and vanilla. Stir until warm and steaming, or about 170 degrees.
Step Two: beat egg yolks with remaining sugar
Beat the egg yolks and 1/4 cup of sugar until they are light yellow in color and well combined. They will noticeably change color when mixed enough. (A hand mixer on low will work well.)
Step three: temper the eggs and cook the custard
Add half of the hot milk into the eggs, stirring as you go. Then add the eggs back into the pan with the rest of the milk and cream. Cook the custard on medium heat, constantly stirring, until it thickens and reaches 185 degrees on a thermometer. Do not let it boil. Add a pinch of salt and vanilla extract, if using, when it is done cooking.
Put the custard in a pot on the stove and heat it up. When it starts boiling, take it off the heat and let it cool.
Step Four: strain and chill
Put a strainer over a bowl and put the custard in the strainer. Put the bowl in the fridge for 4-24 hours so that it will be very cold.
Step Five: churn
When it has reached the consistency of soft serve ice cream, pour in crushed cookies and let the machine mix them in.
Step six: add caramel
Scoop the ice cream into a loaf pan. Pour in the caramel and mix it in gently with a knife. Make a few strokes so that it is swirled, not completely mixed in. Cover with plastic wrap, and freeze until firm.
🥫 Storage instructions
You’ll need to store this (obviously) in the freezer, but keep in mind it won’t keep as long as store-bought ice cream since there are no preservatives.
We like to eat it within a week. Take care to press plastic wrap on the surface to keep out any air.
Stick them in a plastic bag and whack them with a rolling pin.
I never buy whole milk specifically for ice cream. If I have 2% in the house, I use that, and it’s fine. But yes, whole is best and will give you the creamiest finished product.
Sure! I always do. 😊
👩🏻🍳 Expert tips
- Give yourself plenty of time. If your machine base isn’t chilled long enough or your custard isn’t chilled long enough before churning, it just won’t work
- Always make sure to press plastic wrap onto the surface of your ice cream mixture. This will help prevent freezer burn and keep the ice cream fresh for longer
- Don’t be afraid to experiment! You can add all sorts of things, like nuts, chocolate chips, cookie crumbles, and more.
📘 Related Recipes
🍽 Serve it with
Are you having an intimate holiday dinner? Make these too:
- One-Pan Chicken Marsala
- Buttered Fettucine
- Cast Iron Skillet Brussels Sprouts
- Crockpot Mulled Wine
- Deep Fried Ravioli
📖 Here’s the recipe
Caramel Gingersnap Ice Cream
- 1 ½ cups whole milk
- 1½ cups heavy cream
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 4 egg yolks
- pinch salt
- ½ cup jarred caramel sauce
- 20 crumbled gingersnaps
- Heat the milk and cream. Heat the milk, cream, 1/2 cup of sugar, salt, cinnamon and vanilla bean in a saucepan over medium heat, until warm and steaming, or about 170 degrees.
- Beat the eggs and remaining sugar. Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar until light yellow in color and well combined. They will noticeably change color when mixed enough. (A hand mixer on low will work well.)
- Temper the eggs by adding half of the warm milk mixture, a half cup at a time. Then add the egg mixture back into the saucepan with the rest of the milk and cream.
- Heat the custard. Heat the saucepan, which now contains all of the milk, cream, sugar, and eggs, over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it reaches 185 degrees. The custard is ready when it has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. Do not boil. Once off the heat, add a pinch of salt, and the vanilla extract, if using.
- Strain the custard. Hold cheesecloth or a strainer over a bowl to strain the custard. Immediately place the custard into in the refrigerator to chill. Chill for 4-24 hours, until very cold.
- Mix in gingersnaps and caramel by hand. When it has reached the consistency of soft serve ice cream, pour in crushed cookies and let the machine mix them in. Scoop the ice cream into a loaf pan. Pour in the caramel and mix in gently with a knife. Make a few strokes in each direction so that the caramel is swirled, not completely mixed in. Cover with plastic wrap, and freeze until firm.