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Honey Ice Cream Recipe

Sweetened with pure honey, this ice cream has plenty of creamy vanilla flavor.

Sweetened with real honey, this recipe is a twist on a classic that you’ll love.

finished ice cream in gold loaf pan

❤️ Why you’ll love this recipe

  • No granulated sugar. Honey is a natural sweetener, so you don’t need any extra sugar in this recipe.
  • Plenty of vanilla flavor. People who like “regular” ice cream will still love this, because it has a ton of vanilla flavor with a little something different.
  • It’s easy to make. Don’t let the steps overwhelm you. They feel confusing at first, but after your first time, you’ll be churning ice cream at home like a pro.

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.

ingredients on white counter

You’ll need the following for this great recipe:

  • whole milk
  • heavy whipping cream
  • honey (I prefer something milder like clover or wildflower honey)
  • egg yolks
  • whole vanilla beans
  • vanilla extract
  • salt

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  • ice cream maker
  • strainer
  • medium saucepan

🍴Instructions

Step One: Heat the milk, cream, and honey

pan of warm milk and cream

Heat the milk, 1¼ cup of the cream, and all the honey in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir until it is warm and steaming, or about 170 degrees. You will have just a small amount of cream left to beat with the eggs.

Step Two: Beat the eggs and remaining heavy cream

eggs and cream beaten until frothy

Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks and cream together until they are light yellow in color and well combined. When you mix them enough, you will see that they change color.)

Step three: Temper the eggs

adding eggs in to temper

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.

Step Four: Heat the custard

stainer set over bowl with vanilla beans inside

Put the pan with the milk, cream, honey, and eggs on the stove over medium high heat. Stir it until it gets hot and reaches 185 degrees Fahrenheit. When it thickens enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, it is done. Don’t let it boil. Take it off the heat when it reaches temperature.

Step Five: Strain the custard and add the vanilla and salt

ice cream machine churning liquid

To strain the custard, hold cheesecloth or a strainer over a bowl. Pouur the custard on top to remove any solids. Add the vanilla bean and vanilla extract along with the salt and stir to combine. Immediately place the custard into in the refrigerator to chill. Chill for 4-24 hours, until very cold.

Step Five: Churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions

ice cream scoop in finished container of ice cream

Once it has reached the consistency of soft serve ice cream, place it into a loaf pan, cover it with plastic wrap, and freeze it until it is firm, which should take at least 3 hours.

🥫 Storage instructions

Place the ice cream in an airtight container or in a loaf pan with plastic wrap presed right up against it to prevent freezer burn. It will stay fresh in the freezer for up to 1 months, but it’s best in the first two weeks.

Let it sit out at room temperature for 10-15 minutes to soften before serving.

🔍 FAQs

Can you make honey ice cream without an ice cream maker?

Yes! You can make it by hand, but it will be a little more work. Just pop the liquid custard in a medium bowl in the freezer and stir it well every 30 minutes or so. This might sound easy but it’s actually a huge pain! I find that any ice cream maker is well worth it.

Will I like this if I don’t like the taste of honey?

Yes! I think so! It tastes like vanilla ice cream, but a bit different. Honestly, though, just use sugar in that case. It’s cheaper! My vanilla ice cream is exactly the same butt with sugar.

👩🏻‍🍳 Expert tips

  • Don’t add additional honey, it will make the ice cream too soft.
  • Don’t skip the straining step. You’ll often have small bits of egg in the custard and you definitely want those out!
  • For a softer ice cream, serve it right out of the churn. For a firmer consistency, let it freeze for a few hours.

📘 Related Recipes

🍽 Serve it with

  • Fresh fruit, whipped cream, and additional honey or agave syrup
  • Scoop on top of homemade baked goods like berry pie
girl in green dress holding cone of honey ice cream

📖 Here’s the recipe

close up view of off white ice cream
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Honey Ice Cream

Print Recipe
Sweetened with pure honey, this ice cream has plenty of creamy vanilla flavor.
Prep Time:30 mins
Cook Time:15 mins
cooling:12 hrs
Total Time:12 hrs 45 mins
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Ingredients

  • cups whole milk
  • cups heavy cream divided
  • ½ cup honey clover or wildflower
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 vanilla beans
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Heat the milk and cream. Heat the milk, 1¼ cup of the cream, and all the honey in a saucepan over medium heat, until warm and steaming, or about 170 degrees. You'll have just a small amount of cream left to beat with the eggs.
  • Beat the eggs and remaining heavy cream. Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks and remaining cream 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, honey, 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. Take off the heat when it reaches temperature.
  • Strain the custard and add the vanilla and salt. Hold cheesecloth or a strainer over a bowl to strain the custard. Add the vanilla bean and vanilla extract along with the salt and stir to combine. Immediately place the custard into in the refrigerator to chill. Chill for 4-24 hours, until very cold.
  • Freeze ice cream according to the manufacturer's instructions. When it has reached the consistency of soft serve ice cream, place into a loaf pan, cover with plastic wrap, and freeze until firm, at least 3 hours.

Notes

If you are using a stronger flavored honey, I’d recommend using 1/4 cup of honey and 1/4 cup granulated sugar unless you love an intense honey flavor.  Add the sugar (rather than cream) to the eggs in step 2 but otherwise make the ice cream exactly the same.
Your ice cream will freeze solid but not super hard.  It’s scoopable but melts quickly. 

Nutrition

Calories: 291kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 163mg | Sodium: 41mg | Potassium: 106mg | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 860IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 93mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American, Southern
Keyword: old fashioned vanilla ice cream, vanilla ice cream recipe with eggs
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 291kcal
Author: Katie Shaw
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