Fresh mint adds an authentically cool, creamy flavor to this double mint Oreo ice cream recipe. Think of it as mint chocolate chip - but better! - with a cookies and cream twist. With an ice cream maker, this egg-free recipe is incredibly easy to make at home, and only requires about 10 minutes of active prep time. Although it's too good to reserve for just one time of year, this Oreo ice cream is especially ideal for a summer dessert or St. Patrick's Day!
I've said it a hundred times and I'll say it a hundred more; homemade ice cream is where it's at. A decent ice cream maker and a few simple ingredients have the ability to transform even the most basic of ice cream flavors (I'm lookin' at you, vanilla) into a gourmet dessert. And I assure you, that couldn't be more true than it is with this mint Oreo ice cream!
Why you'll love this fresh mint ice cream
- It's so easy to make. The hardest thing you'll have to do is steep some mint in heavy whipping cream - which isn't hard at all!
- It's egg-less. Don't get me wrong, I love the results of a custard-based ice cream. I just don't love the process. The good news is, this mint Oreo ice cream turns out thick, creamy, and perfectly scoopable straight from the freezer - without the use of eggs.
- It's adaptable. You can swap the Oreo cookies for chocolate chips or chunks to turn this into a mint chip ice cream recipe, or skip the add-ins entirely for a plain mint ice cream.
- The flavor is *chef's kiss*. Most recipes rely on mint extract for their flavor, but this one also benefits from the natural flavor of fresh mint leaves to really kick things up a notch. Between that and the chunks of chocolate cookies and cream in every bite, you have a cool, sweet, and creamy dessert that leaves absolutely nothing lacking in the flavor department.
Recipe ingredients and substitutions
This mint oreo ice cream recipe only requires a handful of basic ingredients, many of which might already be in your kitchen, and all of which you can find at a basic grocery store. A few things to note:
- Mint is available in many varieties, but spearmint is what you'll find in most grocery stores, and what I used here for the classic flavor you'd expect from mint ice cream. That said, feel free to experiment with other varieties if you want to switch up the flavor a bit. I can vouch for it being great with chocolate mint as well! When it comes to measuring out the mint for this recipe, measure your mint before rinsing, and squeeze out any excess water after rinsing.
- I often use the tiniest bit of vodka to make sure my egg-free ice creams stay soft and scoopable straight from the freezer, but if you'd prefer to skip it, that's fine. It won't affect the ice cream flavor one way or another.
- You can use mint extract, peppermint extract, or a combination of the two. If you're only going to use one, I'd opt for mint extract as a first choice.
- The green food coloring is of course optional, but gives this homemade ice cream that classic "mint chip" color (and also makes it a perfect St. Patrick's Day dessert!). I used Wilton's "Leaf Green" gel color. The amount you need will vary based on the exact color and type (liquid, gel, etc.) you use. Keep in mind that the color of the ice cream will intensify a bit as it churns, but then mellow out to a slightly cooler color once you add the chopped Oreos.
- You can use gluten-free Oreos to keep this mint ice cream gluten-free. I'd go with the traditional Oreo cookie versus Double Stuf if you have the choice. You can even use Mint Oreo cookies to really double down on the mint flavor!
How to make mint oreo ice cream
Step one - Steep the mint: In a small to medium saucepan, whisk together heavy cream, granulated sugar, and salt. Submerge the fresh mint and cook the mixture on the stove over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until it just begins to simmer. Remove from heat, cover, and let the mint steep for one hour.
Step two - Combine remaining ingredients: Strain the mint from the mixture, pouring the cream into a large mixing bowl as you do so. (I love this large strainer for tasks like this!) Whisk in the milk, vodka, vanilla extract, and mint/peppermint extract, plus enough food coloring to achieve a perfect shade of mint green.
Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate the mixture until cold - at least 5 to 6 hours, but preferably overnight. If you have a kitchen thermometer, you'll know it's cold enough once the temperature is lower than 40ºF.
Step three - Churn: Give the ice cream mixture a quick whisk to smooth it out, and then churn it in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Once the ice cream is nearly done churning (with my machine, I do this at the 25 minute mark), add the crushed Oreo cookies. Continue to churn until the cookies are dispersed and the ice cream has frozen and thickened sufficiently. (I usually churn it another 3-5 minutes after adding the Oreos.)
Step four - Freeze: Transfer your ice cream to a freezer-safe lidded container, or store it in a metal loaf pan, covering the surface with plastic wrap and wrapping the entire pan in a double layer of foil. Freeze well - preferably overnight! - before serving.
Tips for perfect homemade ice cream
I have a few tricks up my sleeve for churning out perfectly soft, creamy, and scoopable ice cream at home, so if you've struggled with this in the past, here are a few pointers:
- Use heavy cream. More fat = softer, creamier ice cream. We're not making frozen yogurt or sorbet, so don't skip the full fat cream!
- Add egg yolks OR alcohol. Using egg yolks to create a custard base for ice cream is always a dependable option, but it takes a little extra time (and works better for some flavors than others). In the absence of egg yolks, a small amount of alcohol (like vodka) will also help prevent a hard, icy texture by lowering the freezing point of your ice cream.
- Freeze rapidly. The faster your ice cream freezes, the less opportunity there will be for ice crystals to form. This is why it's important to start with a thoroughly-chilled ice cream base (colder than 40ºF before churning) and use an efficient ice cream maker (with a fully frozen bowl).
- Store properly. As mentioned above, make sure your ice cream is stored in a freezer-safe container or in a metal pan thoroughly wrapped in both plastic wrap and aluminum foil. Then, keep it towards the back of your freezer, where the temperature is coldest and less susceptible to warm drafts from opening and closing your freezer door.
Naturally, this mint Oreo ice cream is delicious as-is - served in a bowl or waffle cone. If you can swing a chocolate waffle cone, even better. But in case you want to take your dessert to the next level, here's what I'm thinking:
- Scoop it over peppermint brownies or Oreo brownies.
- Sandwich it between two chocolate chip cookies or mint chip cookies.
- Swap out the ice cream in this cake to make a mint Oreo ice cream cake!
When stored properly, your ice cream should stay creamy and free of ice crystals for 2-4 weeks.
Yes - Cuisinart makes a great one! Alternatively, if you have a stand mixer with an ice cream maker attachment, that should work as well. It's worth nothing that while an ice cream maker may seem like a frivolous kitchen accessory, it quickly pays for itself when you consider the fact that 1.5 quarts of high-quality ice cream can cost anywhere from $5-$10 (or more!). Plus, homemade ice cream so often rivals anything you can buy in a store!
More homemade ice cream recipes you'll love
If you're pulling the ice cream maker out, you might as well make a few more frozen treats while you're at it! Here are a few of my favorites for a hot summer day:
Easy Mint Oreo Ice Cream
Fresh mint adds an authentically cool, creamy flavor to this double mint Oreo ice cream recipe. Think of it as mint chocolate chip - but better! - with a cookies and cream twist. With an ice cream maker, this egg-free recipe is incredibly easy to make at home.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Churn Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes (plus chill time)
- Yield: approx. 1 quart
- Category: ice cream
- Method: ice cream machine
- Cuisine: American
- 1 lb ½ ounce (2 cups) heavy cream
- 5 ¼ ounces (¾ cup) granulated sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 ounce (1 cup, packed) mint leaves (measure before rinsing)
- 8 ½ ounces (1 cup) whole milk
- 1 tablespoon vodka
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon mint extract
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
- green food coloring, optional
- 20 Oreos, chopped or crushed
- Steep the mint: Whisk together heavy cream, sugar, and salt in a small/medium saucepan. Submerge fresh mint in mixture and cook on the stove over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until just beginning to simmer. Remove from heat, cover, and allow mint leaves to steep for 1 hour.
- Combine remaining ingredients: Strain the mint from the cream, pouring the mixture into a large bowl. Add milk, vodka, vanilla, mint, and peppermint extracts. Whisk together, optionally adding food coloring as needed to achieve your desired shade of mint green. Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate the mixture until colder than 40ºF, about 5-6 hours minimum.
- Churn: Briefly whisk the chilled ice cream base to ensure it's smooth. Then, churn ice cream in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. During the last 3-5 minutes of churning (I do this at the 25 minute mark) add the Oreo cookie pieces. Continue to churn until the Oreos are dispered and the ice cream is sufficiently frozen and thick.
- Store: Transfer the ice cream to an airtight, freezer-safe container, or store in a metal loaf pan, covering the ice cream surface with a layer of plastic wrap and wrapping the pan in a double layer of aluminum foil. Freeze well, preferably overnight, before serving.
Ingredients and Substitutions:
- Mint: Spearmint is what you'll find in most grocery stores - and what I used here - but feel free to experiment with other varieties. Measure your mint before rinsing, and squeeze out any excess water after rinsing.
- Vodka: Optional, but will help prevent your ice cream from freezing as hard, so that it's easy to scoop straight from the freezer.
- Extracts: If you can't find both mint extract and peppermint extract, use a full teaspoon of one or the other (preferably the former).
- Food coloring: I used Wilton's "Leaf Green" gel color. The amount you need will vary based on the exact color and type (liquid, gel, etc.) you use. Keep in mind that the color of the ice cream will intensify a bit as it churns, but then mellow out to a slightly cooler color once you add the chopped Oreos.
- When stored properly in the freezer, your ice cream should stay fresh and free of ice crystals for 2-4 weeks.
- Churn time may vary based on the ice cream maker used.
Keywords: mint oreo ice cream, mint ice cream, fresh mint ice cream, mint cookies and cream ice cream, oreo ice cream recipe