Hello! I'm Suzannah, a serious DIYer and mom of two little ones. Follow along with my DIY fixer upper house renovations, sewing and crafty projects, real food recipes, and de-stressing goals.
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Dairy-free cherry vanilla ice cream recipe

I'm so excited that it's summer fruit season! It's really time to celebrate the local bounty and real, fresh, seasonal food and treats. In Oregon we grow almost all the really good stuff! Berries, cherries, peaches...

Right now cherries are just getting ripe and I got a bunch and really wanted to make a recipe using them. I haven't made ice cream in a while, but made some plain vanilla the other week and I was feeling confident enough in how homemade coconut milk ice cream works that I made this recipe. It's kind of like Cherry Garcia but with no chocolate, unless you choose to add it!

There are about a million ways to make homemade ice cream with coconut milk and other dairy-free ingredients. So many methods, ways of making it smooth, fatty, sweet, creamy... I'm pretty sure you can put just about any creamy liquid mixture into an ice cream maker and it'll make a frozen, somewhat ice cream-like dessert. But it won't necessarily be that good.

I've played around a lot in the past but I really trust the method/base ingredients Kelly Brozyna worked out in her book Dairy-Free Ice Cream. Good blend of coconut and other milks, sweetened with dates, thickened with grassfed gelatin. Works really well! I modified her basic recipe for this cherry vanilla version.

Dairy-free cherry vanilla ice cream


  • 1 (13.5-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk 
  • 3/4 c. pitted dates (about 15 of the small ones I buy in bulk) (or use 4 tbsp xylitol)
  • 1.5 c. almond, cashew, or coconut milk (the thinner kind--homemade nut milk or from a carton)
  • 2 tbsp vanilla 
  • 1 tbsp gelatin dissolved into 1/4 c. boiling water (or 1/2 tsp guar gum, but I've never tried that)
  • 1/2 c. pitted cherries, roughly chopped (fresh or frozen)


    1. Combine all ingredients except cherries in a high speed blender. Blend until smooth and dates have been totally chopped up/blended.
    2. Freeze or refrigerate blender mixture until cold.
    3. Add mixture to an ice cream maker and churn till it's the texture of soft serve. 
    4. Add cherries and process until done per manufacturer's instructions. When done, spoon into a large, low dish.

    Eat the whole batch right away or freeze, though it will get pretty hard when completely frozen. For serving after freezing, get it out about 20 minutes before serving to let it soften.

    I just love how I can make absolutely any ice cream I want without dairy! It's so easy and delicious!

    Also, P.S. - I am totally in love with these napkins--shop them below!

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