A rich and creamy Dulce de leche ice cream is a real treat. A toasted coconut dulce de leche ice cream, however takes this homemade ice cream recipe to whole new level.
What is dulce de leche?
Dulce de leche is a milk and sugar based caramel. Basically you cook sweetened condensed milk, which is milk and sugar combined already, until the sugars caramelize. That's it. Really.
And it is perfectly smooth and creamy, making it ideal for a homemade ice cream recipe.
Is dulce de leche the same as caramel?
Not really the same, though they are similar and when you try dulce de leche for the first time, you will definitely think they are similar.
And you absolutely do not have to use homemade, they sell cans of it in every single grocery I have ever been to in the last 8+ years. You can also get fancy dulce de leche like this, which I have also had and it is delicious.
You can make your own though, if you so desire. And you can find directions on how to here.
How do you make homemade ice cream?
There's three ways to make ice cream if you include no-churn, which I am...
French style ice cream, which is custard-based with sugar, egg yolks, milk, and cream. This is a great base that I use for a lot of ice creams, like my toasted marshmallow ice cream recipe. And while this considered a french technique for making ice cream, this is largely what you will find included in all ice cream recipes.
Then there is something called Philadelphia-style ice cream, and eggless ice cream recipe, and what I use for this coconut dulce de leche ice cream recipe. A really delicious thing and so simple that to be honest, I thought it was gonna suck. I mean, basically you just heat up heavy cream (some recipes call for milk as well) with sugar until the sugar dissolves and then chill it before putting into the machine.
After trying philadelphia style ice cream, I can honestly say I cannot tell the difference. So much so, that I have created other ice cream recipes with this base, like sour cherry ice cream. Maybe the texture is slightly less creamy (if you make it plain)…maybe. But since I added vanilla bean and sour cherry puree I could not tell even a little bit.
Last would be no-churn, which is by far the simplest of all ice cream recipes, using sweetened condensed milk, folded with whipped heavy cream and best of all, no ice cream maker. This no-churn blueberry cream recipe couldn't be easier.
- Heavy cream for richness
- Whole milk. While the idea of making this richer by only using cream sounds appealing, it actually doesn't work that way...it becomes grainy, so a little bit of milk is necessary. But not in equal measure, you don't want too much water in the base, or you'll end up with heavily crystallized ice cream.
- Dulce de leche
- Vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract. I use paste, because I always have it, and also because less water content, again.
- A touch of salt
- Unsweetened coconut flakes. After all, this is a dulce de leche ice cream with coconut. For the best flavor, toast the coconut up a bit.
Tips for success
- Since this is a Philadelphia-style, eggless ice cream recipe, you will want to make sure to use heavy cream not half and half, for richness.
- This does require an ice cream maker. Don't have one and don't know where to start? Don't worry, read this, where I talk all about ice cream makers and why you should have one.
- Ice cream maker
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 14 ounce cans of dulce de leche if making your own, you will need about 1 ¾ cups
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup unsweetened coconut
- Slowly simmer the milk and cream in saucepan over medium heat, bringing it just up to a boil. Remove from heat and whisk in the dulce de leche until fully combined. Whisk in vanilla and salt and transfer to a bowl. Cover and chill completely at least four hours, but I always chill overnight.
- Put the cold mixture into your ice cream maker, and let it do it's magic. When it is nearly firm, fold in the toasted coconut. Pack into freezer safe containers and freeze until firm.