Chocolate Ice Cream Base

Last summer, I finally figured out the whole homemade ice cream thing. After a year or two of icy homemade ice cream that turned into a brick when I popped it into the freezer, I finally realized that starting with a custard base was the way to go. I’ve been making lots (and lots) of homemade ice cream, and I’ve whipped up lots of homemade versions of the favorites that the hubby and I used to buy at the grocery store.

Of course, there are some exceptions, but I think you’ll find that a lot of your favorite ice cream flavors start with either a vanilla or a chocolate ice cream base. As much as I love chocolate, when it comes to ice cream, I tend to be more of a vanilla girl.  It’s perfectly fine to mix chocolatey things into my vanilla ice cream, but I like to start with vanilla.  My husband, on the other hand, loves chocolate.  While, I prefer peanut butter ripple ice cream (made with vanilla), he always goes for the chocolate peanut butter cup. He’s also a fan of the Ben and Jerry’s Phish Food ice cream and pretty much any other ice cream that starts with a rich chocolatey ice cream base.

A few weeks back, I shared my recipe for vanilla ice cream base over at She’s Becoming Doughmesstic. But, since I know some of you are probably like my husband and prefer chocolate ice cream to vanilla, I thought I’d share my recipe for chocolate ice cream base. It’s great on its own or it serves as a great starting point for all of your chocolatey favorites!

Chocolate Ice Cream Base
(Yields approximately 1 1/2 quarts)

  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
    (You can also use milk chocolate or dark chocolate… Whatever you prefer)

Combine the milk and heavy cream in a saucepan over medium-low heat.  Bring it almost to a simmer, but don’t allow it to boil. Sift the cocoa powder into the cream mixture (to remove any lumps).  Add the chocolate chips, stirring to incorporate the chocolate into the cream mixture.

Meanwhile, beat together the egg yolks and granulated sugar until the mixture is very light in color and falls back from the beaters in ribbons into the bowl. Gradually, beat about 1 cup of the hot cream mixture into the egg mixture to temper the eggs and keep them from scrambling.

Pour the tempered egg mixture into the saucepan, and continue to cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly), until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon.

Once the custard has thickened, transfer it to a clean mixing bowl and allow to cool for about 30 minutes.  Cover with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic against the surface of the custard. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 2 hours.  Then, freeze in an ice cream maker, according to the manufacturer’s directions.  The ice cream will be a soft-serve consistency, but it can be transferred to an airtight container and placed in the freezer for a few extra hours to reach a hard ice cream consistency.

12 Responses to Chocolate Ice Cream Base

  1. You know, of all the ice creams I’ve made, I don’t think chocolate has been one of them! That will have to be remedied…and in the meantime, I wish I could lick yours off the spoon. ;-)