Filed under: Frozen / Uncategorized
June 2, 2023

Mint Chocolate Ice Cream

Easy, homemade mint chocolate chip ice cream that’s unbearably creamy and studded with endless little bits of crispy mint chocolate.

Yield: 1 quart
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Mint chocolate ice cream is my, my brother’s and now my daughter’s favorite flavor. I first made this for her half birthday back in April and twice since. It’s the ultimate mint chocolate experience: the ice cream is wonderfully creamy, not overly minty, the chocolate is dark and minty (but not necessarily so – see recipe) and it’s positively packed with little chocolate bits. 

A few notes about this recipe: the ratios are based on a common custard base recipe (3 cups dairy, 6 yolks). I use a little less sugar because I don’t think it needs more than half a cup and I do away with tempering the eggs and cook the custard together. I also use a whole vanilla bean and keep the bean in the custard overnight to further flavor the base. 


Making the ‘chips’ for the mint chocolate ice cream

Rather than chopping up a bar of chocolate to add at the end I got creative making the chips for this ice cream. Back in college I worked in a gelato cafe and I’d make stracciatella and mint stracciatella gelato. To do this we’d melt chocolate, place it in a bottle and squeeze out lines of chocolate between thin layers of churned gelato.

 I wanted to mimic the end result of that which had crispy bits of chocolate all over so I came up with this: I’ll ask you to (using a dark mint chocolate!) melt it, add some coconut oil which helps keep it crispy even when frozen, then spread it thin and freeze. Then you’ll chop it and add it to the mint base. This means you’ll get a ton of little bits of chocolate that snap between your teeth, as if you were eating them cooled rather than frozen. It makes a huge difference! 

Recipe Ingredients 

Heavy cream: or heavy whipping cream, they are interchangeable here. 

Milk: Whole milk makes for a creamier end result but 2% can also be used. 

Egg yolks: I always find ice cream making to be the best way to use up egg yolks! You can use either 5 or 6 but there’s no need for more (and less will make for a less creamy base). 

Salt: Fine sea salt. If using table salt, just use a pinch. 

Vanilla: A freshly scraped vanilla bean or extract or paste. If you are using the latter two, they go in after the base has cooked. 

Mint: We’re using this sparingly because a little goes a long way. If you want it very minty and you know you like your mint extract add another drop to the base. 

Chocolate: I have more on this below under ‘what kind of chocolate should I use’ if you are using a bar. If you absolutely don’t want to use a bar you can use mini chocolate chips. 

Coconut oil: A little bit of coconut oil helps keep the chocolate ‘snappy’ or crispy even when frozen. If you don’t have it, leave it out. 

Food coloring: Mint ice cream is usually found in a lovely shade of pale turquoise. There’s no need to use it for the ice cream but it makes for a more visually obvious flavor, a drop or two is enough. 


How to make a no churn mint chocolate ice cream 

If you don’t have an ice cream machine to churn the base, you’ll want to skip the custard part of this and make a base by whipping 2 cups heavy cream until thickened and then stirring in 1 can sweetened condensed milk. You’ll add the flavorings and chocolate chips all at once and then put into a container and freeze. No churn ice cream recipes aren’t as silky or complex tasting as a traditional custard recipe but they do well enough. 


How to make an egg-free mint chocolate ice cream 

The eggs are in this custard base because they add fat and make for a creamy, very creamy base. Without them you’ll have a thinner base (it also won’t be a custard anymore!) but it’s doable. Usually when I do egg-free ice cream I’ll look for other ways to add that fat to keep the creamy consistency. 

One way to do it is to use cream cheese instead: heat the milk, cream, vanilla and sugar as instructed. Once the sugar has dissolved add just a quarter cup of it to the cream cheese and whisk until you can’t find any cheese lumps, then whisk this mixture in with the rest of the base. Once you pour it through the mesh sieve you’ll get rid of any lingering bits. Proceed as directed. (This is a trick learned from Jeni).

Another way to is to add cornstarch which helps thicken the base and does a little magic in keeping the cream smooth even when frozen. This is a popular trick used in gelato recipes. To do this, you’ll reserve ½ cup of the milk to mix with one tablespoon of cornstarch and create a slurry. Cook the remaining milk, cream, sugar, salt and vanilla until the sugar has dissolved then add the slurry and cook until the custard is slightly thickened. Proceed as directed. 

How to make a dairy-free mint chocolate ice cream 

You can do this dairy free, you’ll need to find substitutes for the heavy cream, the milk and use a dairy free chocolate. For the cream I’d use coconut cream, the milk can be coconut milk or another milk that has a good fat content. 

Questions you might have about this recipe 

Why don’t you temper the eggs? 

Quite simply because I’ve found you don’t need to. As the mixture heats the sugar will dissolve first and then the custard will thicken, the two steps to cooking it. Tempering I think just adds an extra, unnecessary step. If the yolks go in when the base is cold, there’s no need to temper. 

What kind of chocolate should I use? 

I use and recommend using a dark mint chocolate, you’ll find these in the candy aisle of a grocery store, and nope they won’t overly mint the ice cream (especially when we’re holding back on the mint in the custard base). Theo, Chocolove, Alter Ego (this one is very dark at 90% cocoa solids), and Endangered Species all make a dark mint chocolate bar. If you can’t find it/don’t want to use it go ahead and use any semi-sweet chocolate bar. 

Instead of mint extract, can I make this with fresh mint? 

Yes! Cook the base as directed and then add 1 cup fresh mint or mint chocolate and let it steep in the custard overnight. Pour the base through a fine mesh sieve before churning to remove the mint. 


Mint Chocolate Ice Cream

Easy, homemade mint chocolate chip ice cream that’s unbearably creamy and studded with endless little bits of crispy mint chocolate.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Chill Time: 1 day
Yields: 1 quart


Mint Ice Cream

  • 480g or 2 cups heavy cream
  • 240g or 1 cup whole milk
  • 100g or ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • 6 large yolks if you only have 5 yolks that works too
  • ½ tsp good quality peppermint extract
  • 1 fresh vanilla bean scraped or 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract or paste
  • Optional: a drop or two of food coloring green or turquoise

Chocolate chips

  • 170g dark mint chocolate, about 3/4 cup chopped, or use dark or semi-sweet chocolate, 55%-78% cocoa solids. (Please note: you can use less chocolate if you don't like a lot of chocolate bits)
  • ½ tsp coconut oil


  • In a pot add the heavy cream, whole milk, sugar, salt, yolks and vanilla bean and its scrapings and whisk together. Set the pot over medium low heat.
  • Stir as the custard cooks, the sugar will melt first and gradually the mix will thicken slightly. When the mix starts to steam, and reaches about 170 F, you can remove it from the heat.
  • Pour it through a fine mesh sieve (to remove any lingering egg bits), add the mint extract and vanilla extract if using and whisk (you can also add the food coloring if using). If you sed a vanilla bean, put it back in the base to let it further flavor the custard. Let it come to room temperature then transfer to the fridge to chill overnight.
  • Freeze the ice cream machine bowl overnight as well, if using.
  • The next day, begin melting the chocolate over a double boiler or in the microwave. Stop when it’s almost fully melted and then stir until it’s smooth. Add the coconut oil and stir.
  • Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and pour the chocolate over the paper. Smooth into a thin, even layer (keeping all of the chocolate on the paper), then set the pan in the freezer.
  • Remove the vanilla bean from the mix and give it a quick stir. Churn the custard according to the machine instructions. When there’s about 5 minutes left on the churn, remove the chocolate from the freezer and chop into tiny bits. Add them to the ice cream and let it churn until mixed (if the machine is done churning, mix them in with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula).
  • Store ice cream in a freezer safe container.


Makes 1 quart ice cream.

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Recipe Reviews

  1. Hi Sam, first of all I am a HUGE fan. I want to make all of your recipes and that’s unusual for me!! I LOVE making homemade ice creams and mint chip is one of them! THANK YOU for using real ingredients! Some very respectable websites use corn syrup or condensed milk and to me it tastes so terrible. My friend’s neighbor raises chickens and those fresh rich gold yolks really make a difference! FYI…I chop Andes chocolate mints and use in place of choc chips. You’re wonderful Sam. I enjoy your blog so much!