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Main page >  Ice Cream Recipes  >  The Chocolate Collection > “Hot Chocolate” Ice Cream>  with xanthan gum

An ice cream maker paddle just pulled out of the ice maker bowl with freshly churned hot chocolate cream still attached to it; a hand is holding the paddle.

THE LIKE-A-PRO ICE CREAM

"Hot Chocolate" Ice Cream
• with xanthan gum •

"Hot Chocolate"
Ice Cream
• with xanthan gum

With Dutch-processed cocoa powder, milk, cream, sugar, and xanthan gum.

This Hot Chocolate Ice Cream was actually created by accident. Our plan was to make a Caramel-Chocolate Ice Cream using the Caramel Sugar from our No-Stress Caramel Ice Cream. However, after tasting it, we realised that the chocolate flavour overpowered the caramel. The result was an ice cream that tasted just like our favourite hot chocolate. It quickly became a favourite, so we decided to add it to our chocolate collection.

Ice Creams made with xanthan gum are our Like-A-Pro ice creams, because which just one extra ingredient -xanthan gum-, you can make an eggless ice cream with a perfect, full-bodied mouthfeel, which churns beautifully, melts uniformly during serving, and keeps well in the freezer for a long time. Just like professionals do!

THE EASY! Crowd-pleasing and easy to make. Eat now and thank us later. With cocoa powder, milk, cream, sugar.

THE ITALIAN WAY. This is your hot weather ice cream: easy to make and resistant to melting. Perfect for popsicle moulds, too. With cocoa powder, milk, cream, sugar, corn starch.

THE FRENCH-STYLE ICE CREAM. Rich and velvety, this is a custard-based ice cream; a tad bit tricky to make, but so much worth it. With cocoa powder, milk, cream, sugar, egg yolks.

THE EASY! Crowd-pleasing and easy to make. Eat now and thank us later. With cocoa powder, milk, cream, sugar.

THE ITALIAN WAY. This is your hot weather ice cream: easy to make and resistant to melting. Perfect for popsicle moulds, too. With cocoa powder, milk, cream, sugar, corn starch.

THE FRENCH-STYLE ICE CREAM. Rich and velvety, this is a custard-based ice cream; a tad bit tricky to make, but so much worth it. With cocoa powder, milk, cream, sugar, egg yolks.

or see:

The ingredients

Do not reduce or replace anything; everything is there for a reason.

• Xanthan gum can be found in speciality shops, health food stores and online. Read more about it here.

• Milk: choose whole milk with approximately 3.5% fat. Skimmed milk, lactose-free, and non-dairy milk should not be used as they lack the necessary fat, milk proteins, and lactose that are crucial for making ice cream.

Sugar: use regular granulated white sugar for the caramelising process. You can skip the caramelisation process and use light brown sugar instead, which is an acceptable substitute, but the flavour will differ. To get a similar taste as if you were using caramel sugar, add two tablespoons of vanilla extract. We’ve tested both ways and found that caramel sugar gives the ice cream a distinct Hot Chocolate flavour so we highly recommend it.

Avoid using any other sweeteners, such as honey, stevia, golden syrup, table sweeteners, confectioner’s sugar, or any other natural or artificial sweeteners in liquid or powder form.

• Heavy cream (for double cream read below): for this recipe you can use heavy cream with 35% to 36% fat content. It is ok to use cream suitable for whipping or ultra-pasteurised cream with 35-36% fat content. Do not use low-fat cream or non-dairy cream.

• Unsweetened Dutch-processed cocoa powder: 
we use Dutch-processed cocoa powder because it has a deep chocolate flavour which makes for a perfect Hot Chocolate effect. Do not use natural cocoa powder or raw cacao powder, because the milk may curdle upon boiling it with the cocoa. Take care that the cocoa powder you use is unsweetened, which means it should contain neither sugar nor other sweeteners.

Overview

This is a quick overview of the recipe. If you are new to ice cream making, do read the recipe before proceeding. 

Watch us making it
The recipe

"Hot Chocolate" Ice Cream
• with xanthan gum •

"Hot Chocolate"
Ice Cream
• with xanthan gum •

Ingredients:
Notes:

It is recommended to weigh all ingredients, even the liquid ones, to achieve the best results.

To avoid any unwanted loss of quantity, weigh the liquid ingredients directly into the bowl/pan in which you will mix the ingredients, rather than transferring them from one bowl to another.

If a kitchen scale is unavailable, these guidelines may help:

1 cup (US) = 237 ml | 1 tablespoon = 15 ml

  • Measuring sugar in tablespoons is more accurate than cups. Use a 15 ml measuring tablespoon (not a regular one). Each scoop should be leveled with the flat side of a knife and should weigh 13 gr of sugar.
  • For cocoa powder, sift it into a bowl and then take spoonfuls of it, leveling each spoonful with a knife. Measure the cocoa powder right after sifting, as its volume decreases over time.When measuring milk and heavy cream, be sure to thoroughly scrape any residues left on the sides and bottom of the measuring cup with a rubber spatula.

Note that the quantities indicated in grams, ounces, and cups in our recipes may not always be exact conversions, but any deviations will not affect the outcome.

This recipe makes a 1.2 litre/quart ice cream mixture (before churning), perfect for ice cream makers with a capacity of 1.5 and up to 2 litres/quarts (like Cuisinart ice cream makers).

If you need to scale the ice cream mixture up or down, use this ratio of the ingredients (in weight only):

caramel sugar 17.5% / Dutch-processed cocoa powder 1.3% / milk 45.6% / heavy cream 35.4% / xanthan gum 0.2%

in desired total weight of ice cream mixture.

For example, if you want to make 1000 g (approx. 1 litre) of ice cream mixture, you need:

• 1000 g x 17.5% = 175 g caramel sugar

• 1000 g x 1.3% = 13 g cocoa powder

• 1000 g x 45.6% = 456 g milk

• 1000 g x 35.4% = 354 g heavy cream

• 1000 g x 0.2% = 2 g xanthan gum

Substituting Caramel Sugar  with Light Brown Sugar

Caramelisation can be skipped by replacing it with light brown sugar, which is an acceptable substitute. However, the flavour will be slightly different. To obtain a similar taste as caramel sugar, add two tablespoons of vanilla extract. We’ve tested both ways and found that caramel sugar gives the ice cream a distinct Hot Chocolate flavour, so we highly recommend using it. If you want to skip the caramelisation process, using light brown sugar and two tablespoons of pure vanilla extract is your next best option. Follow these steps:

  • Skip step 1 and 2.
  • In step 3, add the cocoa powder, light brown sugar, and milk and bring it to a boil.
  • After the mixture cools down (step 4), add the vanilla extract and stir well before chilling it in the refrigerator.

A flexible rubber spatula is good for:
-wiping the bottom of the saucepan when you cook dairy on the stovetop.
-scraping residues from bowls, saucepans etc.

If you do not have one, we strongly encourage you to buy one, preferably a flexible one. 

Instructions

Plan ahead:

The ice cream mixture needs to cool completely before churning, so prepare it in advance (approx. 8 hours before) to give it time to chill in the refrigerator.

If your ice cream maker has a removable freezer bowl, put it in the freezer for the whole time indicated by the manufacturer before churning, usually 24 hours.

Step 1: Make the caramel sugar

Line a baking tray with parchment paper and place it next to the stovetop. Put two trivets beneath the baking tray to protect the counter from the heat, making sure that the tray is levelled and secure in its place.

Bring the water to a boil: in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan pour the water (250 g; 8.8 oz) and bring it to a boil over high heat (100° C / 212° F / it bubbles up vigorously).

Add the sugar: remove the saucepan from the heat and add the sugar (250 g; 8.8 oz). Stir for 1 minute; do not estimate it, time it. This is the time the sugar needs to dissolve; some sugar granules left are ok.

Caramelise the sugar: return the saucepan with the syrup over high heat and cook until it is a deep brown caramel colour (180° C / 356° F if you use a thermometer). Do not stir while it cooks. As the caramel darkens, you can reduce the heat to medium-high to better control the caramelisation, you can lower the heat to medium-high, but never below that point as it will halt the process. If you notice darker spots forming, tilt the pan gently once or twice to distribute the heat evenly.

Remove the saucepan from the heat and pour the caramel over the parchment paper, scraping with the rubber spatula caramel residues from the saucepan,

Let it cool down for approximately 30-40 minutes or until it doesn’t feel warm to the touch (this is at 27° C / 80° F if you use an infrared thermometer).

Note that the caramel is very sensitive to humidity, so from now on, take care that anything it comes into contact with is completely dry. Don’t leave it exposed to the kitchen’s humidity either; as soon as it comes to room temperature, either proceed with the recipe or put it in an airtight bag.

Break the caramel into pieces with your hands (dry, please) and put the pieces in a (completely dry) blender jug/food processor. Pulse to break the caramel to pieces as fine as possible.

A blender creates a fine powder which dissolves easily. A food processor breaks the caramel into pieces, the size of a rice grain, which just take a little longer to dissolve.

Store the caramel sugar: weigh out the caramel sugar (205 g; 7.2 oz; all of it if measuring in cups) you need for the ice cream into a (completely dry) airtight container and close the lid. Proceed with the recipe, or keep it for up to one month. Any leftover caramel sugar can be stored in an airtight container and used to sprinkle over the ice cream or to flavour your coffee.

Step 2: Make the "hot chocolate" milk

Set up your blender; it should be heatproof and large enough to hold 1200 ml of liquid and blend 800 ml of warm liquid.

Warm the milk: put the milk (535 g; 18.9 oz) in a medium saucepan and warm over medium heat stirring often, until the milk is hot and steamy (this is at 75° C / 167° F if you have a thermometer). Do not let it boil.

Pour the warm milk into the blender; with the blender on, gradually add the caramel sugar (205 g; 7.2 oz) in 3 parts, blending to dissolve it. 

Add the sifted cocoa powder (15 g; 0.5 oz) with the blender on and blend for one more minute to dissolve. Note that the caramel sugar is so sensitive to humidity that if you linger the spoon you use to add the caramel sugar over the steamy warm milk, it hardens. You can remove 

Strain the ice cream mixture over a fine-mesh sieve and back into the saucepan you used to warm the milk (no need to rinse).

If any small bits of caramel sugar are left on the sieve after straining, just put them back in the caramel milk; they will gradually dissolve. But if there are large clumps of undissolved caramel sugar left, put them into another saucepan with a splash of the caramel milk and stir over medium heat to fully melt, before adding back to the caramel milk.

Step 3: Make the ice cream mixture

Pour the cold heavy cream (415 g; 14.6 oz) into the blender jug (or a large bowl, if using an immersion blender). 

Bring the “hot chocolate” milk to a boilplace the saucepan with the “hot-chocolate” (from step 2) over medium-high heat, and warm, stirring occasionally; when it comes to a rolling boil (95°C; 203°F; or when large bubbles which pop vigorously appear on the surface; or if it starts to overflow), immediately remove it from the heat and pour it into the blender jug with the cold heavy cream.

Sprinkle in the xanthan gum: with the blender on, slowly sprinkle the xanthan gum (¾ tsp.) over the surface and blend for 2 minutes to fully hydrate the xanthan gum. Do not expect the blend to thicken; it will thicken slightly as it cools.

Step 4: Chill the ice cream mixture

This step is a foolproof way to bring the ingredients to the right temperature before sprinkling the xanthan gum, without using a thermometer. To sum it up, all we do is combine that much fridge-cold liquid with that much boiling-hot liquid. And that’s it. The blend instantly reaches our target temperature for the xanthan gum to dissolve efficiently.

You can read more about this no-thermometer method here.

Strain the ice cream mixture over a fine-mesh sieve and into a bowl. Prefer stainless steel or heatproof glass bowls as they chill faster. Avoid using plastic or glass bowls, as plastic may not chill the mixture well, while glass may break from the sudden temperature changes.

Cool it down: prepare an ice bath by putting the bowl with the ice cream mixture into a larger bowl and filling the empty sides with ice cubes and cold water. How many ice cubes? A tray of ice cubes (200 g; 7 oz of ice) is enough to cool down the ice cream mixture: we just need to cool it down until it is no longer warm to the touch so that you can safely put it in the refrigerator. This will take approx. 15 minutes; do stir occasionally.

Chill until completely cold: cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 8 hours and up to 3 days. Xanthan gum needs 6-8 hours in the refrigerator to fully develop, so do not rush the cooling process.

Step 5: Churn the ice cream

Check if the ice cream mixture is cold before churning it: below 12ºC / 54ºF / it feels fridge-cold when you place your index finger into it.

Prepare the ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. 

Stir: give a vigorous and thorough stirring to the ice cream mixture. If it is too thick, give it quick blitz with the immersion blender; this will allow it to churn for longer and fluff up. 

Churn: with the machine running, pour the ice cream mixture through the canister and into the ice cream makerLeave to churn until fluffed up and creamy; depending on your ice cream maker, this can take anywhere from 30-60 minutes.

This ice cream will expand and fluff up during churning. It is ready when it looks smooth and fluffy, with the consistency of soft-serve ice cream. The total churning time depends on your ice cream maker and could be anywhere from 30-70 minutes.

To evaluate if it is ready, lift a spoonful; it should be thick enough to stand on the spoon, but it will still be soft like soft-serve ice cream. If it looks watery or starts to melt the moment you spoon it, leave it to churn for longer.

In any case, if you feel doubts about the consistency, leave it to churn for ten minutes more. But beware: at this stage, do not expect it to be like store-bought carton ice cream; for now, it should be more like soft-serve ice cream. It will firm up and become like store-bought ice cream only after it sets in the freezer.

So, stop the ice cream maker when thick and creamy, as described above. If you leave it to churn for much longer, it will start turning grainy.

Note that some ice cream makers are programmed to stop after a specific time, which doesn’t make sense because the ice cream may need to churn for more to reach its fullest potential. So, if you notice that your ice cream maker stops on its own and upon checking the ice cream, you find that it is sloppy instead of fluffy, try to turn the machine on again and leave it to churn until it reaches the desired texture.

Step 6: Put the ice cream in the freezer to set

Put in the freezer to set: before serving the ice cream or moving it to a container for storing, you have to put it in the freezer to set. To do so, turn off the ice cream maker and: 

· remove the removable freezer bowl (still filled with the ice cream) from the ice cream machine

· remove the paddle, scraping any ice cream attached to it back into the ice cream bowl 

· place it in the freezer, uncovered 

Setting time depends on many factors; see notes below for indicative times.

Serve or store: when it sets, you can serve it directly from the removable freezer bowl or transfer it to an airtight container for longer storage.

The setting time for the ice cream largely depends on the type of ice cream maker you use.

It can take :

  • 1-5 hours for removable freezer bowls (these are the ice cream maker bowls which you should pre-freeze before churning)
  • 1-2 hours for aluminium bowls (these are the bowls from compressor ice cream makers)

Note: the times given are indicative. Setting time depends on many factors.

Check it occasionally (approx. every 2 hours; or as needed) while it is in the freezer. The ice cream is ready when it has an internal temperature of -10ºC / 14ºF. If you do not have a thermometer, to evaluate if the ice cream has set, insert a round tip knife into it, all the way to the bottom: 

  • when the ice cream is ready, it feels firm as you go down, but at the same time it is soft enough to insert the knife into it; it should have this same firm consistency from top to bottom.
  • not ready yet: it will feel hard on the top and softer as you go down
  • if left in the freezer for too long: it will be too hard for the knife to insert into it and too hard to scoop out of the ice cream bowl. Do not worry, though! Read right below how to soften it.

If the ice cream stays in the removable freezer bowl for too long, it will harden and be difficult to remove or serve.

To make it scoopable again, leave it in the refrigerator to soften. That can take:

  • anywhere from 4 to 10 hours for removable freezer bowls (the ones which need pre-freezing before churning)
  • 1-2 hours for aluminium bowls (these are the bowls from compressor ice cream makers)

(Note: the time given is indicative, time may vary depending on many factors, so do check it occasionally as it sits in the refrigerator.)

When the ice cream is easy to scoop (or it has an internal temperature of approx. -11°C / 12°F if you have a thermometer), you can transfer it to another container and store it in the freezer or serve it directly from the removable freezer bowl.

Straight after churning, the ice cream has a soft-serve consistency and melts immediately upon contact with anything. This makes it impossible to serve or transfer to another container.

Putting it in the freezer after churning sets it and brings it to the right consistency, similar to that of an ice cream parlour’s.

Storing and serving

Storing: in the freezer for one month, covered well to protect it from absorbing the freezer’s smells. 

Scooping: this ice cream, like all artisanal ice cream, freezes hard in the long term. You can make it perfectly scoopable again by putting it in the refrigerator for 45-60 minuter until soft; or until its internal temperature reads -10°C / 14°F.

Instructions

The ice cream mixture needs to cool completely before churning, so prepare it in advance (approx. 8 hours before) to give it time to chill in the refrigerator. 

If your ice cream maker has a removable freezer bowl, put it in the freezer for the whole time indicated by the manufacturer before churning, usually 24 hours.

Line a baking tray with parchment paper and place it next to the stovetop. Put two trivets beneath the baking tray to protect the counter from the heat, making sure that the tray is levelled and secure in its place.

Bring the water to a boil: in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan pour the water (250 g; 8.8 oz) and bring it to a boil over high heat (100° C / 212° F / it bubbles up vigorously).

Add the sugar: remove the saucepan from the heat and add the sugar (250 g; 8.8 oz). Stir for 1 minute; do not estimate it, time it. This is the time the sugar needs to dissolve; some sugar granules left are ok.

Caramelise the sugar: return the saucepan with the syrup over high heat and cook until it is a deep brown caramel colour (180° C / 356° F if you use a thermometer). Do not stir while it cooks. As the caramel darkens, you can reduce the heat to medium-high to better control the caramelisation, you can lower the heat to medium-high, but never below that point as it will halt the process. If you notice darker spots forming, tilt the pan gently once or twice to distribute the heat evenly.

Remove the saucepan from the heat and pour the caramel over the parchment paper, scraping with the rubber spatula caramel residues from the saucepan,

Let it cool down for approximately 30-40 minutes or until it doesn’t feel warm to the touch (this is at 27° C / 80° F if you use an infrared thermometer).

Note that the caramel is very sensitive to humidity, so from now on, take care that anything it comes into contact with is completely dry. Don’t leave it exposed to the kitchen’s humidity either; as soon as it comes to room temperature, either proceed with the recipe or put it in an airtight bag.

Break the caramel into pieces with your hands (dry, please) and put the pieces in a (completely dry) blender jug/food processor. Pulse to break the caramel to pieces as fine as possible.

A blender creates a fine powder which dissolves easily. A food processor breaks the caramel into pieces, the size of a rice grain, which just take a little longer to dissolve.

Store the caramel sugar: weigh out the caramel sugar (205 g; 7.2 oz; all of it if measuring in cups) you need for the ice cream into a (completely dry) airtight container and close the lid. Proceed with the recipe, or keep it for up to one month. Any leftover caramel sugar can be stored in an airtight container and used to sprinkle over the ice cream or to flavour your coffee.

Set up your blender; it should be heatproof and large enough to hold 1200 ml of liquid and blend 800 ml of warm liquid.

Warm the milk: put the milk (535 g; 18.9 oz) in a medium saucepan and warm over medium heat stirring often, until the milk is hot and steamy (this is at 75° C / 167° F if you have a thermometer). Do not let it boil.

Pour the warm milk into the blender; with the blender on, gradually add the caramel sugar (205 g; 7.2 oz) in 3 parts, blending to dissolve it. 

Add the sifted cocoa powder (15 g; 0.5 oz) with the blender on and blend for one more minute to dissolve. Note that the caramel sugar is so sensitive to humidity that if you linger the spoon you use to add the caramel sugar over the steamy warm milk, it hardens. You can remove 

Strain the ice cream mixture over a fine-mesh sieve and back into the saucepan you used to warm the milk (no need to rinse).

If any small bits of caramel sugar are left on the sieve after straining, just put them back in the caramel milk; they will gradually dissolve. But if there are large clumps of undissolved caramel sugar left, put them into another saucepan with a splash of the caramel milk and stir over medium heat to fully melt, before adding back to the caramel milk.

Pour the cold heavy cream (415 g; 14.6 oz) into the blender jug (or a large bowl, if using an immersion blender). 

Bring the “hot chocolate” milk to a boilplace the saucepan with the “hot-chocolate” (from step 2) over medium-high heat, and warm, stirring occasionally; when it comes to a rolling boil (95°C; 203°F; or when large bubbles which pop vigorously appear on the surface; or if it starts to overflow), immediately remove it from the heat and pour it into the blender jug with the cold heavy cream.

Sprinkle in the xanthan gum: with the blender on, slowly sprinkle the xanthan gum (¾ tsp.) over the surface and blend for 2 minutes to fully hydrate the xanthan gum. Do not expect the blend to thicken; it will thicken slightly as it cools.

Strain the ice cream mixture over a fine-mesh sieve and into a bowl. Prefer stainless steel or heatproof glass bowls as they chill faster. Avoid using plastic or glass bowls, as plastic may not chill the mixture well, while glass may break from the sudden temperature changes.

Cool it down: prepare an ice bath by putting the bowl with the ice cream mixture into a larger bowl and filling the empty sides with ice cubes and cold water. How many ice cubes? A tray of ice cubes (200 g; 7 oz of ice) is enough to cool down the ice cream mixture: we just need to cool it down until it is no longer warm to the touch so that you can safely put it in the refrigerator. This will take approx. 15 minutes; do stir occasionally.

Chill until completely cold: cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 8 hours and up to 3 days. Xanthan gum needs 6-8 hours in the refrigerator to fully develop, so do not rush the cooling process.

Check if the ice cream mixture is cold before churning it: below 12ºC / 54ºF / it feels fridge-cold when you place your index finger into it.

Prepare the ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. 

Stir: give a vigorous and thorough stirring to the ice cream mixture. If it is too thick, give it quick blitz with the immersion blender; this will allow it to churn for longer and fluff up. 

Churn: with the machine running, pour the ice cream mixture through the canister and into the ice cream makerLeave to churn until fluffed up and creamy; depending on your ice cream maker, this can take anywhere from 30-60 minutes.

Put in the freezer to set: before serving the ice cream or moving it to a container for storing, you have to put it in the freezer to set. To do so, turn off the ice cream maker and: 

· remove the removable freezer bowl (still filled with the ice cream) from the ice cream machine

· remove the paddle, scraping any ice cream attached to it back into the ice cream bowl 

· place it in the freezer, uncovered 

Setting time depends on many factors; see notes below for indicative times.

Serve or store: when it sets, you can serve it directly from the removable freezer bowl or transfer it to an airtight container for longer storage.

Storing: in the freezer for one month, covered well to protect it from absorbing the freezer’s smells. 

Scooping: this ice cream, like all artisanal ice cream, freezes hard in the long term. You can make it perfectly scoopable again by putting it in the refrigerator for 45-60 minuter until soft; or until its internal temperature reads -10°C / 14°F.

This step is a foolproof way to bring the ingredients to the right temperature before sprinkling the xanthan gum, without using a thermometer. To sum it up, all we do is combine that much fridge-cold liquid with that much voiling-hot liquid. And that’s it. The blend instantly reaches our target temperature for the xanthan gum to dissolve efficiently.

You can read more about this no-thermometer method here.

When churning with a domestic ice cream maker, the ice cream mixture must be fridge-cold (4ºC–12ºC / 39ºF-54ºF / it feels fridge-cold when you place your finger into it).

If the ice cream mixture is not cold enough, the ice cream maker may not be able to churn it to its fullest potential, resulting in a sloppy liquid vs. fluffy ice cream.

This ice cream will expand and fluff up during churning. It is ready when it looks wavy and fluffy, with the consistency of soft-serve ice cream. The total churning time depends on your ice cream maker and could be anywhere from 30-70 minutes.

To evaluate if it is ready, lift a spoonful; it should be thick enough to stand on the spoon, but it will still be soft like soft-serve ice cream. If it looks watery or starts to melt the moment you spoon it, leave it to churn for longer.

In any case, if you feel doubts about the consistency, leave it to churn for ten minutes more. But beware: at this stage, do not expect it to be like store-bought carton ice cream; for now, it should be more like soft-serve ice cream.

It will firm up and become like store-bought ice cream only after it sets in the freezer.

So, stop the ice cream maker when thick and creamy, as described above. If you leave to churn it for much longer, it will start turning grainy.

Warning: some ice cream makers are programmed to stop after a specific time, which doesn’t make sense because the ice cream may need to churn for more to reach its fullest potential. So, if you notice that your ice cream maker stops on its own and upon checking the ice cream, you find that it is sloppy instead of fluffy, try to turn the machine on again and leave it to churn until it reaches the desired texture.

The setting time for the ice cream largely depends on the type of ice cream maker you use.

It can take :

  • 3-5 hours for removable freezer bowls (these are the ice cream maker bowls which you should pre-freeze before churning)
  • 1-2 hours for aluminium bowls (these are the bowls from compressor ice cream makers)

Note: the times given are indicative. Setting time depends on many factors.

Check it occasionally (approx. every 2 hours; or as needed) while it is in the freezer. The ice cream is ready when it has an internal temperature of -11ºC / 12ºF. If you do not have a thermometer, to evaluate if the ice cream has set, insert a round tip knife into it, all the way to the bottom: 

  • when the ice cream is ready, it feels firm as you go down, but at the same time it is soft enough to insert the knife into it; it should have this same firm consistency from top to bottom.
  • not ready yet: it will feel hard on the top and softer as you go down
  • if left in the freezer for too long: it will be too hard for the knife to insert into it and too hard to scoop out of the ice cream bowl. Do not worry, though! Read right below how to soften it.

Straight after churning, the ice cream has a soft-serve ice cream consistency and melts immediately upon contact with anything. This makes it impossible to serve or transfer to another container.

Putting it in the freezer after churning sets it and brings it to the right consistency, similar to that of an ice cream parlour’s.

If the ice cream stays in the removable freezer bowl for too long, it will harden and be difficult to remove or serve.

To make it scoopable again, leave it in the refrigerator to soften. That can take:

  • anywhere from 4 to 10 hours for removable freezer bowls (the ones which need pre-freezing before churning)
  • 1-2 hours for aluminium bowls (these are the bowls from compressor ice cream makers)

(Note: the time given is indicative, time may vary depending on many factors, so do check it occasionally as it sits in the refrigerator.)

When the ice cream is easy to scoop (or it has an internal temperature of approx. -11°C / 12°F if you have a thermometer), you can transfer it to another container and store it in the freezer or serve it directly from the removable freezer bowl.

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