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This vegan chocolate ice cream isn't like any you've ever had before. It's dark and rich and super creamy, without the use of milk or refined sugar! It's a homemade dairy free ice cream that will satisfy your taste buds this summer. Pinky promise.
Dairy Free and Vegan Chocolate Ice Cream
A few years ago I found this chocolate almond ice cream in the small town I was living in (back when I was eating dairy). I fell in love fast.
Chocolatey goodness combined with a hint of almond flavor. It was so good.
And now I'm not eating dairy so (obviously) I needed to make my own dairy free version. This is it!
Not only is it vegan and dairy free, it's also a delicious Paleo ice cream.
Tools to make this homemade ice cream recipe
- Ice cream maker - With this new style you don't have to mess with ice and salt. Mine is an old style so I'll walk you through the ice/salt method below.
- Mixing bowl - This one has a non-skid bottom...such a good idea for mixing without the bowl sliding off the counter.
- Immersion blender - This is the one we use and love.
- Ice cream salt - This is sold in most stores near the table salt, or on Amazon here.
- Ice cream serving bowls (optional) - Double (or triple) the recipe and make it a party! These insulated bowls will keep your hands from freezing on a cold bowl!
Ingredients to make this chocolate coconut milk ice cream
- Coconut milk - I recommend the full-fat kind of coconut milk. We get this kind at Costco.
- Maple Syrup - You can use honey if you'd prefer. Both will give a delicious result.
- Cocoa Powder - Use the 100% cocoa powder.
- Almond Extract - The almond extract will give a subtle flavor that's so so good. Find this in the baking aisle in the grocery store, or order it on Amazon here. If you'd prefer a plain chocolate ice cream you can omit the almond extract, but I don't recommend it.
- Vanilla Extract - You likely already have this in your spice cupboard.
- Sea Salt - Salt is necessary to enhance the sweetness and balance the flavors. Don't skip it.
How to make dairy free vegan chocolate ice cream
STEP 1: Get your ice cream machine ready
Use the manual that came with your mixer to get specifics on how to get it ready. You may need to freeze the container before using.
STEP 2: Mix the Ingredients for your chocolate almond ice cream
Mix everything together in a bowl. If you have clumps from your coconut milk, use an immersion blender to get it smooth, or use your regular stand blender.
STEP 3: Pour Your Ice Cream Mixture into the ice cream container
Pour the ice cream mixture into the ice cream container that came with your ice cream maker and put the lid on.
STEP 4: Layer ice and rock salt In your ice cream maker
Our ice cream maker is the old-school kind. My mother-in-law found it at a thrift store and gave it to us. It works great and was only a few dollars. If your ice cream maker uses a different freezing method, follow the instructions there.
Our ice cream maker uses the ice and salt layering method, I usually do a 2" layer of ice, then sprinkle with salt, then repeat until I've filled the container. As you can see in the photos below, you want the ice to get above the liquid line. The higher it goes, the faster it will turn to ice cream.
STEP 5: Turn on the ice cream Machine
Now turn on the ice cream maker and let it run. Usually the ice cream makers just stop when the ice cream is completely frozen.
Sometimes you can hear the motor working harder as it gets close. It'll sound like it's really struggling, or that the motor is dying. Most likely it's not dying, it's doing what it's supposed to do.
Step 6: Put your dairy free ice cream in a freezer safe container to freeze for later
Some ice cream makers allow you to put the canister right in the freezer. I usually transfer mine to a different container for a few reasons:
- The canister for my ice cream maker is huge and usually doesn't fit nicely in my freezer
- My Pyrex containers have lids that fit securely and my ice cream maker canister does not.
Recipe Tips & FAQ
What makes vegan ice cream vegan?
This ice cream is vegan because it doesn't contain any dairy, egg, or other animal products. It also is sweetened with maple syrup instead of honey.
What if I don't have rock salt?
Although I've never tried it, it's possible to use table salt to make ice cream. If you run out of ice cream/rock salt, use what you have! I've also seen rock salt on the shelves at corner stores (for people like you and me who really need that ice cream and don't want to go to the big grocery store).
Does this coconut milk ice cream taste like coconut?
No! I don't actually like the coconut flavor, and I am thrilled that there isn't a coconut flavor to this ice cream. I think the cocoa powder and almond extract do a great job of covering it up. If you want more coconut flavor, use some coconut flakes as a topping.
More Dairy Free & Paleo Chocolate Desserts
Get more dairy free, vegan, and Paleo chocolate desserts here on the blog:
- Paleo chocolate cake (dairy free and Paleo)
- Chocolate almond clusters sprinkled with sea salt (vegan, dairy free and Paleo)
- Paleo chocolate pudding (dairy free, vegan option, Paleo)
- 14 oz Coconut milk (1 can - full fat)
- ½ cup Cocoa powder
- ¼ cup Maple syrup (or honey)
- 1 tsp Vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp Almond extract
- Pinch of salt
- Chopped almonds, chocolate chips, berries (optional toppings)
- Mix all ingredients with an immersion blender (blender or food processor work too) to get any coconut milk clumps out.
- Follow the instructions on your ice cream maker. If you have a double canister ice/salt maker, keep reading these instructions.
- Put the mixture into the inner canister.
- Assemble the machine...put the lid on the canister with the mixture and assemble the ice cream maker.
- Layer ice and salt in between the containers.
- Turn the machine on and wait for the ice cream to be done (usually it will stop on its own - but read your owner's manual).
- Move to a freezer safe container with a lid and store until you're ready to eat.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: ¼ C
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 162Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 24mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 2gSugar: 10gProtein: 2g