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I have an aversion to collecting kitchen appliances that only perform one task. Such as, ice cream makers. Yes, I would love to make my own slow churned ice cream on the regular, but the truth is I won’t. While I love my kitchen gadgets, I have to draw the line somewhere. After seeing the no-churn ice cream trend EVERYWHERE this summer, I knew I needed to jump on the bandwagon. Having never made ice cream, I was a little intimidated! As it turns out, it was insanely easy. I found this recipe to use as my base, but I wanted to create my own unique flavor. I took an Instagram poll on what flavor to make, and Limoncello Cheesecake Ice Cream was born.
Homemade Ice Cream is really just two ingredients + flavoring.
In this recipe, I admit I went a bit overboard on the cheesecake…but that’s entirely subjective, right? Even though the ingredients and process are simple, I did complicate things a bit by making my own Limoncello syrup and baking my own cheesecake to go inside the ice cream. Y’all know how I feel about “from scratch” food. The nice part is that all of these components can be made ahead of time, ready to go when it’s time to make your Limoncello Cheesecake Ice Cream.
Tips for successful Limoncello Cheesecake Ice Cream:
To make the cheesecake I just followed the quintessential cheesecake recipe from Philadelphia: 1 8 oz package of cream cheese, 1 egg, 1/2 Cup sugar. I baked it inside a lightly greased cake pan with no crust, because I planned to add graham crackers separately.
To make my Limoncello syrup, I added equal parts Limoncello and sugar, boiling until it thickened into a syrup. (By the way this is how you make ANY simple syrup, for coffee, tea, or Italian sodas. Equal liquid and sugar, boiled down until thick.)
When the cheesecake finishes cooking, chop it up into tiny cubes, and either store in the fridge if you’re making this portion in advance, or just pop into the freezer while you get the rest of the ingredients ready. This step keeps the cheesecake pieces intact while you mix them in.
Keep extra lemon zest + juice on hand, in case you want more of a tang!
Limoncello Cheesecake Ice Cream
Ice Cream Ingredients
- 1 Quart Heavy Whipping Cream
- 1 Can Sweetened Condensed Milk (14 oz)
- 1 Cup Graham Cracker Pieces (some crumbs, some chunks, keep it fun!)
- 1.5 tsp Sea Salt
- 2 Lemons (cheesecake only needs zest of 1)
Limoncello Simple Syrup
- 2/3 Cup Limoncello Liqueur
- 2/3 Cup White Sugar
- Juice of 1 Lemon
- 1 8 oz Pkg Cream Cheese
- 1 Egg
- 1/2 Cup White Sugar
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- Zest of 1 Lemon (the second lemon)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease any cake pan, preferably 8-9 inches.
Prepare the Cheesecake
- In a mixer, combine room temperature cheesecake, egg, sugar, lemon zest, and vanilla together. Beat until smooth and well combined. Pour into a greased cake pan, and bake for 20-30 minutes. (checking with a toothpick, when it comes out clean it's done.)
- Let cheesecake cool, then cut into small cubes. If you're planning on making your ice cream right away, put the cubes into the freezer to firm them up. If you're making the cheesecake ahead of time, just put them in an airtight container stored in the fridge.
Prepare the Limoncello Simple Syrup
- In a small sauce pan, combine 2/3 C Limoncello, 2/3 Cup white sugar, and the juice of one lemon.
- Bring mixture to a rolling boil, while stirring continuously. Once it comes to a boil, turn the heat to medium, and let the mixture come to a slow simmer. Keep stirring continuously for about 7-10 minutes, until you notice it start to become very bubbly and thick. Take it off the heat immediately.*
- Pour the syrup into a heat proof container to cool down, even put it in the fridge if you're in a rush.
Make the Ice Cream
- In a blender, combine heavy whipping cream, 1 can of sweetened condensed milk, zest of 1 lemon, sea salt, and completely cooled simple syrup. Blend until smooth (about 10 seconds)
- After blending, fold in the cheesecake cubes and graham cracker pieces.
- Pour into an ice cream container (linked below), or a parchment paper lined bread pan. If using the bread pan, be sure to cover tightly with plastic wrap and tinfoil to prevent freezer burn.
- Freeze at least 6 hours.