No ice cream machine is needed for this homemade vanilla ice cream recipe! It’s made in the French style with cooked eggs, giving the creamy ice cream an extra rich texture and luxurious quality.

Homemade Ice Cream Without Machine - Scooped on Ramekin Pie and Speckled with Vanilla Bean Seeds
As I promised last week, here is a post on how to make French vanilla ice cream at home, no ice cream machine required. And it is the creamiest ice cream ever!

This no churn ice cream is basically a spin on a semifreddo, which I have made so many times I could do it with my eyes closed.  What’s with all the semifreddo in my life? 

Well, after I tasted some, I simply didn’t care for storebought ice cream anymore.  Most of them are these atrocious guar gum xanthan gum whatever gum filled fakeries (exception: Haagen Dazs, which is generally made with simple ingredients, but is also pretty expensive). This way I can put whatever I want in my ice cream for CHEAP. 

I’ve made this delicious homemade ice cream as pistachio, mango, peanut butter, chocolate, melon, and so on, but today I’m going to show you how to make some good old vanilla, so you can take that Summer Berry Cobbler Ramekin Pie I posted the other day to the next level.

What’s nice is that unlike the typical no churn ice cream made with sweetened condensed milk, this has a more mellow and marshmallow-like flavor.

Step by Step Overview:

Start by whisking up 2 eggs and 4 egg yolks with granulated sugar in a double boiler until thickened and frothy:

How to Make Ice Cream Without An Ice Cream Maker - Whisk Egg Yolks and Sugar in Bowl over Heat Until Yolks Thicken and Lighten and Look Frothy on Top

My double boiler setup is simply a large bowl set over a saucepan with an inch of simmering water. Make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water at all.

If six eggs seems like a lot, know that it’s those egg yolks that increase the fat content and make this the most delicious ice cream. Just wait until you try it!

Next, make whipped cream out of heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract, mixing it with a hand mixer or simply a whisk until you get soft peaks. If you accidentally go to stiff peaks, that’s okay, but make sure not to go beyond that, or the cream will separate into butter and buttermilk.

Also, you may use a vanilla bean paste instead of extract, or add a scraped vanilla bean pod for visible vanilla specks throughout the mixture.

Fold the whipped cream into the custard, then place it in a glass loaf pan container, or the freezer-safe dish of your choice:

Ice Cream Mixture Poured Into Glass Loaf Dish

If you can, try to put the dish in the freezer ahead of time for best results, but it’s no big deal if the dish is at room temperature.

Place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the custard to prevent a skin or ice crystals from forming on top:

Ice Cream Mixture with Plastic Pressed on Top to Prevent a Skin from Forming

Freeze immediately for 4-6 hours, until it is completely frozen.

Then either cut into slices, spoon some into bowls using an ice cream scoop, or portion scoops into ice cream cones. Enjoy! It is especially wonderful on a hot summer day.

Recipe Tips and FAQ

How do you store leftover ice cream?

Keep in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 4 months. Make sure it is tightly sealed to prevent freezer burn.

Can you use half and half or whole milk?

No. Make sure you buy heavy whipping cream for this. You need high fat here to make the recipe work.

Can you add fresh fruit?

Yes, though know that fresh fruit is pretty firm when it’s frozen. Jam swirls, or even lemon curd, tend to be better choices.

For more of my favorite ice cream recipes, try Biscoff Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream, Pumpkin Chip Gingersnap Cookie Ice Cream, or Mint Chip Gelato Ice Cream Sandwiches.

Recipe Variations

Chocolate chips – Feel free to mix in chocolate chips for a straciatella-like effect. I recommend using mini chocolate chips, or cutting shavings from an actual block of chocolate. Chopped mini peanut butter cups are also delicious.

Easy Hot Fudge Sauce – Swirl up to 1/2 cup into the base before freezing.

Caramel Sauce – Swirl up to 1/2 cup into the base before freezing. Or drizzle it over the top before serving.

Did you enjoy the recipe? Please leave a 5-star rating in the recipe card below and/or a review in the comments section further down the page. Or, follow me on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest!

Homemade Ice Cream Without Machine - Scooped on Ramekin Pie and Speckled with Vanilla Bean Seeds

Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream Without An Ice Cream Machine

No machine is needed for this homemade ice cream! It’s made with cooked eggs for an extra rich texture and creaminess.

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  • 2 extra large eggs
  • 4 extra large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup sugar+2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  • Start by setting up a double boiler (a heatproof bowl set over a pot with an inch of simmering water), and prepare an ice bath that the bowl can be set into later. Place the eggs, egg yolks, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt into the bowl. Split the vanilla bean down the middle and scrape out the seeds, and add those and the scraped vanilla bean to the bowl as well. Cook for about 10 minutes, whisking frequently so the egg doesn’t scramble**, until the mixture reaches 160 degrees F on an instant read thermometer. Immediately remove the custard and place it into the ice bath to cool, and remove the vanilla bean.
  • **If you do happen to scramble some of the eggs, don’t worry. Just strain the custard through a fine mesh sieve after it’s reached 160 and beat air back into it with a hand mixer.
  • In a medium bowl using a mixer, whip the heavy cream until a little frothy. Add in the 2 tbsp sugar and 1 tsp vanilla extract, and whip to soft peaks.
  • Remove the egg custard from the ice bath, and add 1/3 of the whipped cream to it to lighten. Fold in the rest of the cream and pour into a container. Place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the custard so a skin doesn’t form. Freeze immediately for 4-6 hours, depending on your freezer. Enjoy your homemade ice cream!!!!


Calories: 275kcal, Carbohydrates: 19g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 20g, Saturated Fat: 11g, Cholesterol: 268mg, Sodium: 145mg, Sugar: 18g

Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.