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scoop of coconut ice cream in white dish
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4.95 from 38 votes

Coconut Ice Cream

This delicious and creamy Coconut Ice Cream is made the old fashioned way with toasted coconut and both heavy cream as well as coconut cream & coconut milk.
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
cool and freeze time4 hours
Total Time1 hour
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6


  • 6 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut loosely packed
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup light coconut milk canned
  • 14 ounce can coconut cream


  • In a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and the sugar until light and fluffy. Set aside.
  • Add the coconut to a medium sized heavy saucepan and set over medium-high heat. Stir the coconut until it begins to brown, about 7 minutes, but do not allow to burn. Add the half and half, heavy cream, coconut milk, and coconut cream and bring to a simmer. You want to scald the mixture without it coming to a boil. Just before it starts to boil, turn the heat off.
  • Slowly pour the hot coconut milk mixture into the yolk mixture, starting with a small amout at first, whisking constantly. Once you've added enough to warm the egg mixture, add a little more, always whisking, until everything has been combined and well mixed. Then pour the mixture back into the pan.
  • Set over medium-low heat and cook, stirring slowly and continuously, until the custard thickens. You know its done if you can wipe your finger across a coated spatula and it leaves a trail. This takes about 5 minutes. Do not allow the custard to boil.
  • Pour the custard into a clean bowl and place over an ice bath to cool while occasionally stirring to mix the hot with the cool. Refrigerate the custard until cold, at least 1 hour.
    ice cream base chilling over ice bath
  • Transfer the custard to an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Make sure your container has been frozen at least over night prior to starting. I have a Cuisinart and had to make the ice cream in two batches, one right after the other, and the mixing process took about 30-45 minutes per batch. Transfer the ice cream to a container, cover and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours. Makes about 1 quart.
    This delicious and creamy Coconut Ice Cream is made the old fashioned way with toasted coconut and both heavy cream as well as coconut cream & coconut milk.


Cooking tips:
  • When toasting the coconut, take extra care to stir constantly to prevent burning. It can go from golden brown to burnt quickly, so never leave it unattended.
  • I used a mixture of half and half with heavy cream as well as light coconut milk with coconut cream. I found this to be the perfect combination and balance for a rich and creamy ice cream without it being too heavy. You can modify the proportions depending on your preferences and the recipe will still work.
  • After scalding the cream, you can strain the shredded coconut out prior to mixing with the egg yolk mixture if you prefer, but if you love the taste and texture it adds, leave them in!
  • Take extra care to properly temper the egg by whisking in small amounts of the hot liquid at a time, whisking constantly. This will prevent the eggs from cooking. If you accidentally do cook the eggs, you can filter out any solid pieces through a fine mesh strainer.
  • To prevent ice crystals, a tablespoon of vodka or coconut flavored rum can be added to the mixture prior to freezing.
  • Homemade ice creams need a good 10-15 minutes to sit on the counter after freezing to soften before serving. Trust me on this one. Its worth the wait.


Calories: 668kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 54g | Saturated Fat: 41g | Cholesterol: 264mg | Sodium: 113mg | Potassium: 367mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 985IU | Vitamin C: 2.5mg | Calcium: 101mg | Iron: 2.3mg