Three scoops of peppermint ice cream in a bowl.

This Peppermint Ice Cream recipe has a special place in my family’s heart.  Not only do we love its pepperminty flavor, but it was a favorite treat of my Grandpa Renelt’s during the holidays.  So, growing up, we always had a container of Peppermint Ice Cream in our December freezer.

first christmas, 1971
with Grandpa & Grandma Renelt, my first Christmas, 1971

We never made Peppermint Ice Cream from scratch on the farm, however.  We were strictly vanilla making folk.  So I thought it was high time I tried it out.

This peppermint ice cream recipe is rich and creamy, with the perfect amount of peppermint.  And with a couple spoons of homemade Hot Fudge Sauce over the top?  Downright delightful!

ice bath for the ice cream base
Cooking the mixture over the stove.
Freezing the peppermint mixture in a machine.
three scoops of peppermint ice cream in a bowl

Peppermint Ice Cream

Yield: 1½ quarts
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 5 hours
Total Time: 5 hours 15 minutes

This easy peppermint ice cream recipe is creamy and festive! It's the perfect dessert for a holiday party or a Christmas dinner.


  • 1½ cups whole milk
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon Morton kosher salt
  • 2½ cups heavy cream
  • 8 large egg yolks
  • 2 teaspoons pure peppermint extract
  • ½ cup crushed candy canes or hard peppermint candy


    1. Warm the milk, sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium heat to dissolve the sugar and salt completely.
    2. Pour the cream into a metal bowl set in a larger bowl of ice, and set a medium-mesh sieve on top.
    3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Very slowly pour the warmed milk mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly, to temper the egg yolks. Then scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.
    4. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a wooden spoon, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the spoon, about 5-7 minutes. Be careful to constantly stir and to not let the mixture get too hot that it starts to cook/scramble the egg.
    5. Pour the custard through the sieve and stir it into the cream. Then stir until cool over the ice bath. Chill mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator.
    6. Once the mixture is thoroughly chilled, stir in the peppermint extract. Because peppermint extracts can vary in strength, start out with 1 teaspoon and give it a taste test. If you'd like more peppermint flavor, add a 1/4 teaspoon at a time, until you reach the desired level of peppermint flavor. I used McCormick brand peppermint extract and used 2 teaspoons.
    7. Freeze mixture in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
    8. When the ice cream is formed in the ice cream maker, and still fairly soft, fold in the crushed peppermint candy.  Spoon the ice cream into an airtight plastic container and place in the freezer for at least an hour (will still be quite soft), preferably for several hours. If the ice cream is frozen overnight or longer, you may need to let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes to soften it before serving.


adapted from Simply Recipes, and David Lebovitz (author of “The Perfect Scoop”)

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 328Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 198mgSodium: 105mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 0gSugar: 22gProtein: 7g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Nutritionix. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your own favorite calculator.

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a bowl of ice cream with hot fudge