Nice-cream – really is!
Nice-cream – really is!

Nice-cream – really is!

Those 3Es again. Explore, educate, experiment.

“Can I have some bananas on the shop Dad?” The request of an indifferent teen means we had plenty of ripening bananas once he’d changed his mind. Coupled with that, I had a yearning for dangerous and “blissful” ice-cream only without the stacked calories. Having previously seen recipes and references for “nice-cream” and whole food “no-churn” pistachio ice-cream, I headed online.

Nice-cream: Sugar-free, dairy-free dessert made by blitzing frozen ripe bananas and your desired flavours.

The “no-churn” pistachio ice-cream, used homemade nut-butter however it was still stacked with “sweetened condensed milk” and double cream. It was a recipe for ice-cream after all.

Then came The Kitchn “magic.” “How To Make Creamy Ice Cream with Just One Ingredient!” Summarised in one sentence:

If you freeze a banana until solid, then whizz it up in a blender or food processor, it gets creamy and a little gooey, just like custard ice cream

It thanks to their high pectin content.

“That’s the sort of thing you discover,” she sighed, “when all your friends are vegan, gluten-free, dairy-allergic, and you’re on a no-added-sugar diet.”

In this community, nut butters are common lingo. Basically (roasted) nuts or peanuts (technically legumes), cooled and blitzed. Another pizzaz of “magic.” Blitz long enough, it does feel like a long time 8-10 mins, and the crumbly but mixture suddenly turns to butter! Do not add liquids other than oils! Salt can help balance the flavours.

Peanut butter and chocolate nice-cream had caught my attention, so we made homemade peanut butter and were ready to make homemade peanut butter and chocolate nice-cream. Hazelnuts would work well with chocolate too I think. The fat is the nut butter is said to promote a creamier texture.


A high-speed / power blender is required

  1. Get prepared – time is temperature
    • Put the container you plan to store the finished nice-cream in, in the freezer
    • A spatula to push ingredients down the container in between pulses
    • Additional ingredients, flavourings and toppings
  2. Peel and slice your bananas – overnight or at least 4 hours (1 ripe banana per portion)
  3. One tbsp of something milky and wet (milk or Greek yoghurt) to help the blitz if you want

Blitz it all together.

Nice-cream is immediately soft-serve ready. Or back to the freezer for a couple of hours. Longer freezing requires a little room-temperature defrosting and I would say, our nice-cream tasted best “immediately” rather than frozen.

  1. Flavours stronger than banana (quite a few cooks add vanilla extract)
    • More frozen fruit, eg berries, cherries and more
      • Frozen coconut milk cubes is one to try
    • Nut butters (add fat), chocolate, espresso, dates for sweetness (sun butter too)
    • Spices
    • Salt to help balance or lift flavours
    • Vanilla extract is often promoted
    • Combinations
      • We went with home made peanut butter and chocolate (cacao powder)
      • Cherry almond
        • This was a win! Better prepped, I had “frozen” the blender container and the container the nice-cream was being stored in.
        • 2 tbsp Greek yoghurt, 1 tsp of vanilla extract and 2 tsp on almond extract.
        • With the mixture still very frozen, crumbly almost, I added a splash of milk.
        • With the nice-cream mixed, I added some softened frozen cherries and 12-15 almonds for one last pulse.
      • Salted caramel (soaked and pitted dates and a healthy pinch sea salt)
      • Plain banana with fruit compote
  2. Colours and textures
    • The pale, creamy bananas adopts all colours
    • Nuts, seeds, coconut or cookie dough
    • Swirls… we loosened our homemade peanut butter and swirled it through!
  3. Toppings
    • Chocolate of course, nuts, seeds, more fruit,

Firstly – the pureed frozen ripe bananas made remarkably good nice-cream! Kitchen magic. Mango is sometimes put forward as an alternative to banana.

Second – Peanut-butter chocolate was better and creamier than chocolate nice-cream – was it the butter?

Third – we added chunky peanut pieces and grated chocolate. You could not taste the grated chocolate. So chunky pieces of both from here on in.


From the base, the options are endless (flavour, colour and texture, and toppings). Maybe I will try a few classics? Rum-raisin. I do want to make pistachio nice-cream. In theory this should work with the aid of the nut-butter and the fact that the pistachios are already roasted and salted.

After thinking about those flavours, having already experimented with “swirls” I am now thinking about layered flavours and hidden surprises.


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  1. Pingback: Day #159 – nutrition, wellness habits – Edventures

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