Who says ice cream is just for the warm summer months???? Not me! Peppermint Hot Cocoa Ice Cream is the PERFECT treat for even the cold winter nights.
Growing up, my family would attend the Ghiradelli Square Christmas tree lighting every year in San Francisco. It always took place the evening after Thanksgiving, so the temperatures had already dipped in Northern California as we gathered to officially start the holiday season.
Sure, there were some years when it was warm enough for us to be in just jeans and sweaters, but most years we needed scarves and jackets to keep us toasty. Even if we complained about how cold it was while we were waiting outside for the tree to be lit, the first thing we all did after the ceremony was head into the Ghiradelli ice cream shop and devour giant sundaes.
While enjoying ice cream in cold temperatures may seem odd to some people, I love it along with the fond memories it reminds me of.
Hot cocoa is another thing I love to indulge in this time of year, so putting the two together when I was brainstorming winter ice cream flavors seemed like a total no brainer for me.
While I don’t use actual hot cocoa packets for this recipe, I use the same ratios of sugar to cocoa powder that I do when I make homemade hot chocolate. That way, it’s the perfect mix of sweet and chocolate with some peppermint thrown in there.
Oh, and who could forget the marshmallows?!?!? You can’t have hot cocoa without the perfect topping!
Cheers to cold weather and even colder ice cream!
Peppermint Hot Cocoa Ice Cream with Mini Marshmallows
Ice cream isn't just for warm summer days. Peppermint Hot Cocoa Ice Cream with Mini Marshmallows is the perfect winter treat!
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
- 3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
- 1/4 cup, plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 cup mini marshmallows
Place your ice cream maker’s base and a storage container in the freezer at least 24 hours before you begin making the ice cream – better yet, always have it there so you can make ice cream whenever you want!
In a medium bowl, mix all of the ingredients, except the mini marshmallows, until combined. The mixture may clump a bit, but don't worry - do your best to get rid of the clumps while gently stirring.
Cover and refrigerate for at least three hours (and up to eight).
Once chilled give it a quick stir to re-incorporate all of the ingredients. If clumps of cocoa still remain after stirring, strain the mixture into a new bowl.
Assemble your ice cream maker, turn it on, then pour the smooth mix into it and churn according to manufacturer’s instructions. When the base starts to thicken, slowly add the mini marshmallows. Once the ice cream is the consistency of soft-serve ice cream (or really thick whipped cream), place it in a storage container in the freezer until firm, at least three hours.