cardamom ice cream
cardamom ice cream

Cardamom Ice Cream

Makes 1 quart

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes
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Recipe Rundown

Floral, peppery cardamom paired with sweet, full fat dairy? What’s NOT to love? This homemade ice cream recipe is what home ice cream machines were made for. So grab your apron and let’s make cardamom ice cream from scratch!

For years I made a vegan version of a cardamom ice cream out of canned coconut milk and then I stumbled upon a full fat dairy version and lost my mind. Words won’t do justice to the combination of heavy cream and impeccably fresh and peppery tasting cardamom.

For those in-the-know, ice cream is one of the easiest desserts you can make from scratch. You need a good recipe and a solid machine, and the rest of the magic happens for you.

What I love about cardamom ice cream

It is truly a rare flavor you won’t find gracing the aisles of your grocery store’s freezer section. And it totally should be! It’s divine and everyone I know (with maybe the exception of my dad) loves the floral, peppery notes of cardamom dispersed throughout sweet creamy ice cream.

Which Cardamom To Use

You can steep cardamom pods in the milk (you’ll need about 12), but I actually have found that buying the whole cardamom seeds (so what lives in the green pods) works really well because you can grind them in a coffee grinder in 5 seconds.

*If you can only find ground cardamom in the spice aisle, that will work, too. It’s just likely to be slightly less intense than if you grind it yourself.

Cardamom Ice Cream Ingredients

  • sugar of choice preferably evaporated cane sugar (we are making a simple syrup)
  • cardamom, preferably freshly ground
  • whole milk – fat is really key here
  • egg yolks – the addition of eggs makes this ice cream extra rich in flavor, so it’s actually a frozen custard
  • heavy cream – you can use either heavy cream or heavy whipping cream (do not substitute for half and half)
  • vanilla extract – just be sure to use real vanilla, none of that imitation sh*t
  • sea salt – just a pinch will enhance the overall flavor of the ingredients

Equipment – What Ice Cream Machine Do You Have?

You will want to follow your manufacturer’s instructions. I think most home ice cream makers tell you to freeze your quart container overnight (minimum 24 hours) and then you pour the chilled liquid into the frozen bowl while it churns.

I’ve personally owned a Cuisinart 1-quart and it’s decent. I would recommend buying the 2-quart version. Only downside, you might want to stick your ice cream in the freezer for up to 4 hours after churning to get a scoop consistency.

More Ice Cream Recipes For You:

cardamom ice cream

Cardamom Ice Cream

Makes 1 quart
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: gluten free ice cream, ice cream
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 large scoops
Calories: 391kcal
Author: Chef Sara Furcini


  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar of choice preferably evaporated cane sugar, divided
  • cup water
  • 3/4 teaspoon cardamom freshly ground
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Pinch sea salt


  • Combine ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons of the sugar with the water in a small saucepan and bring to a rapid boil. Add the cardamom and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 5 minutes, then add the milk, bring to a boil then immediately remove from the heat. Set aside and allow the milk to steep for 15 minutes.
  • Whisk the egg yolks with the remaining ¼ cup of sugar until the yolks turn pale yellow.
  • Heat the cardamom-infused milk once again, on low heat until hot. Pour the hot milk in a steady stream into the beaten egg yolks, whisking the whole time to avoid any lumps or scrambling of the eggs. Pour the custard mix back into the saucepan and cook on low heat, stirring continuously for about 6 to 8 minutes, until the custard thickens to coat a spoon.
  • Put a handful of ice cubes and a cup or two of water in a large bowl. Place a medium bowl in this ice bath. Remove the custard from the heat and strain it into the medium bowl. This cools the custard quickly.
  • When the custard has cooled through, stir in the heavy cream, vanilla extract, and sea salt. Pour into an ice-cream maker. Freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Most budget ice cream machines will produce a soft serve consistency. If you would like to be able to scoop your ice cream, I recommend pouring into a loaf pan lined with parchment paper. Top with parchment paper and wrap tightly with plastic wrap. Freeze for 4 hours. At this point, the ice cream will harden and you can scoop.


Notes: For a dairy free version, replace heavy cream and whole milk with 1 can coconut milk.
For a low-glycemic option, replace the sugar and water with 6 tablespoons maple syrup along with 2 tablespoons rice syrup. Do NOT reduce the overall sugar called for or the ice cream will be overly icy.


Serving: 1scoop | Calories: 391kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 221mg | Sodium: 74mg | Potassium: 190mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 1169IU | Vitamin C: 0.5mg | Calcium: 134mg | Iron: 1mg

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