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This No-Churn Chocolate Ice Cream is an easy recipe made with only 3-ingredients! All you need are whipped cream, sweetened condensed milk, and cocoa powder to make this rich and creamy homemade chocolate ice cream.
🍫 Homemade Chocolate Ice Cream
Ice cream is one of those desserts that can seem intimidating to make at home–and truthfully, traditional homemade ice cream does have a few steps that might deter folks. (Which is not to say you shouldn’t give it a try! This epic German Chocolate Brownie Ice Cream lives in my dreams on a nightly basis…)
But fortunately, there’s a solution for those times you want instant(ish) gratification, without the hassle of cooking custard or freezing an ice cream maker bowl 24 hours in advance. No-churn ice cream to the rescue!
This “shortcut” no-churn style of ice cream relies on whipped cream and sweetened condensed milk to mimic the texture and flavor of traditional ice cream. It’s faster, easier, and a great way to start your homemade ice cream journey.
I’ve shared a number of my favorite no-churn ice creams already, and if you missed them, be sure to check out my recipes for No-Churn Vanilla Ice Cream, No-Churn Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream, and No-Churn Peach Ice Cream. But this chocolate version just might be my favorite yet. It’s rich and creamy, with a deep chocolate flavor that comes from high-quality cocoa powder. I also love it as a base for so many other fun ice cream recipes, so don’t miss the Variations section below for some customizations ideas!
🧾 What You’ll Need
You just need three super simple ingredients to put together this no-churn chocolate ice cream! (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)
- Sweetened Condensed Milk: condensed milk ensures that your ice cream doesn’t freeze too hard and is a perfect scoopable consistency. Make sure you use sweetened condensed milk, NOT evaporated milk. The cans look similar and they’re usually in the same section at the grocery store, but they are not the same thing.
- Cocoa Powder: use high-quality unsweetened cocoa powder for the best results. The cocoa powder is responsible for all of the chocolate flavor, so it’s important to use a good one. Cheap cocoa powders can be nearly flavorless, or worse, impart a bitter, dusty, or stale flavor. My personal favorite is Cacao Barry Extra Brute – it hits that sweet spot between very high quality but also pretty affordable since it is sold in bulk. Other good choices are Valrhona, Guittard, and Ghirardelli.
- Heavy Whipping Cream: I recommend using heavy cream or manufacturing cream over whipping cream, when possible. Heavy cream and manufacturing cream have the most fat, which produces a better flavor and texture. For best results, make sure the cream is very cold before whipping it.
Since this ice cream is a no-churn recipe, you really don’t need much in terms of equipment! If you make ice cream regularly, you’ll find these bonus tools useful: (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)
- Ice Cream Scoop: an ice cream scoop makes it super easy to get those perfect rounded scoops for serving.
- Ice Cream Storage Container: I like to use an ice cream storage container to store the ice cream. It’s nice and airtight so you don’t end up with freezer burned ice cream! If you don’t have an ice cream storage container you can use a 9×5″ loaf pan covered tightly with plastic wrap to store your ice cream.
This homemade ice cream with condensed milk takes a super quick 15 minutes to prep. Full instructions are included in the recipe card down below.
- Combine the condensed milk and cocoa powder in a bowl. Whisk together until the cocoa is dissolved.
- In a separate chilled bowl, whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Add the cocoa mixture to the whip, then gently fold it together.
- Transfer the mixture to an ice cream storage container or 9×5 inch loaf pan. Cover tightly, then place in the freezer for 4-6 hours.
- Dig in!
I love to keep it simple with plain chocolate ice cream, but there are also plenty of mix-ins you can add to make different kinds! Here are a few ideas:
- Rocky Road: mini marshmallows and chopped nuts.
- S’mores: mini marshmallows and graham cracker pieces.
- Almond Joy: coconut extract, sweetened shredded coconut, and chopped toasted almonds.
- Other Mix-Ins: cookie pieces, M&Ms, chopped nuts, dried fruit, mini chocolate chips, chopped Andes mints, crushed peppermint pieces, you name it!
💡 Tips and FAQs
- Chill the bowl and whisk. Chilling both before beating the cream will make the process faster and make the ice cream more stable.
- Use a high quality cocoa powder. This is a MUST! All of the chocolate flavor comes from the cocoa, so using a pale, flavorless powder will result in a pretty disappointing ice cream. My favorite is Cacao Berry. It’s fairly affordable and has fabulous flavor.
- Check the milk. Make sure the canned milk you’re using is sweetened condensed milk; NOT evaporated milk. They look pretty similar but will not yield the same result.
- Mix gently. If you mix too much you’ll beat all the air out of the cream which is key for a light and fluffy texture.
- Freeze for at least 4-6 hours. The longer the better! Keep in mind that all freezers are different, so double check that it’s completely firm to the touch before serving.
Chocolate Mint Swirl Ice Cream
German Chocolate Brownie Ice Cream
Don’t miss the step-by-step tutorial showing how to make No-Churn Chocolate Ice Cream – check out the web story here!
No-Churn Chocolate Ice Cream
- Place the condensed milk in a bowl, and add the unsweetened cocoa powder. Whisk them together until the cocoa has dissolved into the condensed milk. At first it will be chalky and powdery, but as you continue whisking, the cocoa will mix with the milk, and you’ll be left with a shiny, smooth, dark mixture.
- In a chilled bowl, whip the heavy cream with a hand mixer or stand mixer, until firm peaks form.
- Add the cocoa mixture to the bowl of whipped cream and begin gently folding them together. This ice cream gets its texture from the whipped cream, so you don’t want to stir it too vigorously and deflate the cream.
- Scrape the ice cream mixture into an ice cream storage container, or a 9×5 inch loaf pan. Cover the container firmly with a lid, or plastic wrap if using a loaf pan. Place the pan in the freezer for at least 4-6 hours, or until the top of the ice cream is firm to the touch.
- Scoop and enjoy! This ice cream can be stored, well-wrapped, in the freezer for up to a month.
Our recipes are developed using weight measurements, and we highly recommend using a kitchen scale for baking whenever possible. However, if you prefer to use cups, volume measurements are provided as well. PLEASE NOTE: the adage “8 oz = 1 cup” is NOT true when speaking about weight, so don’t be concerned if the measurements don’t fit this formula.Click here to learn more about baking measurements and conversion.
About Elizabeth LaBau
I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media: