For serious coffee lovers --- This is about as intense a flavor as you can get in an ice cream, without leaving out the cream altogether!

Intense Black Coffee Ice Cream, the way coffee ice cream should be!

I don’t know about you guys, but the flavor of coffee ice cream always disappoints me.  It’s never bold enough.  To me it always tastes like that cup of coffee I accidentally poured waaaay too much cream into.  Yuck.  So I set out to make myself some of the real deal.  I call it Black Coffee.  It’s about as black as you can get it without leaving out the cream altogether, in which case you wouldn’t have ice cream :)

Freshly churned Black Coffee Ice Cream

This is a simple ice cream recipe, no eggs or custard to worry about.  I don’t find the extra steps add all that much, especially if you eat your ice cream the same day it’s made.  I use a base of half and half, which cuts down on the calories a little.  Every bit helps!

Black Coffee Ice Cream

How did I do it?  How did I cram so much caffeinated flavor into this ice cream?  There are two secrets…one is powdered (instant) espresso.  I used a hefty 6 tablespoons of it.  The second secret might be a little more controversial.   I used 2 tablespoons of extra dark unsweetened cocoa powder.  It add color, richness, and blends with the coffee to emphasize the flavor.  Yes, technically I should have mentioned that in the title, but really I don’t think the ice cream ‘reads’ as chocolate, it just brings out the essence of the coffee.

Homemade Extra Intense Coffee Ice Cream

Black Coffee Ice Cream

Black Coffee Ice Cream



  1. Put one cup of the half and half in a saucepan and stir in the espresso, cocoa powder, and sugar. Heat and stir just until everything gets dissolved.
  2. Remove from heat and let cool. Add remaining half and half and vanilla and refrigerate until cold.
  3. Pour the mixture into your ice cream machine and process according to its instructions.
  4. Spoon the soft ice cream into a container and freeze.
  5. Homemade ice cream is best eaten the day it is made.

Extra dark rich coffee ice cream


more caffeine?

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36 Responses to Black Coffee Ice Cream

  1. Nancy says:

    I came across this recipe while looking at the Dulce de Leche ice cream post last week and being a lover of all things coffee, I had to give it a go. And it was the bomb! It was so tasty and the consistency was perfect as well. Definitely a keeper as I don’t always have the best luck with homemade ice cream. BTW, I made my own half and half with heavy cream and milk and it still turned out great! Thanks!

    • Sue says:

      Thanks for that feedback, Nancy, and I’ve had good luck with half and half, too, I’ll try that next time.

  2. pat says:

    Would it be possible to use fat free half and half? I am anxious to try this recipe! I feel the same way about coffee ice cream!

    • Sue says:

      I really can’t way whether that would work or not Pat, I’ve never had fat free half and half, sorry! Let us know if you try it :)

  3. Heather says:

    I’m always scared that my ice cream will be too hard to scoop after freezing so a slightly generous splash of Bailey’s might have found its way into this. Sooo good. Perfect amount of coffee flavor

  4. Oh my gahhhh. What is this ice cream voodoo you are working?! Love it.
    I am also loving the chocolate. Coffee blooms chocolate so nicely; this is like the reverse! Smart trick!

  5. grace says:

    i’ve never really like coffee ice cream but couldn’t define why; i think you just solved it for me! i always prefer my hot coffee black, so maybe that’s what i expect out of coffee ice cream too.

  6. Would this be legal first thing in the morning? Sounds like super amazing way to wake up and start the day!

  7. Renee says:

    This looks incredible. I will definitely be making some very soon. Thanks Sue!!

  8. Susan says:

    Oh wow, this sound like my kind of ice cream! When given a choice, I always go for the darkest, richest chocolate ice cream :)

  9. Now this is coffee ice cream, what a treat!

  10. cheri says:

    Hi Sue, chocolate and coffee go so well together, this looks delicious!

  11. This looks so awesome, Sue! And I agree with you – coffee ice cream is never strong enough. So I can’t wait to try yours. These pics are incredible!

  12. Sue this looks incredible! I can practically feel the caffeine jolt just by looking at it. ;-) Pinned and can’t wait to try this!

  13. Oh this ice cream looks so creamy and delicious! I agree that coffee and chocolate are perfect together – they compliment without overpowering. Yummy!

  14. You had me at six tablespoons espresso powder. I imagine the ice cream was amazing!

  15. Jonny says:

    Hi, I do not have an ice cream machine, what should I do within this section of the recipe?

    Thanks, Jonny

    • Sue says:

      Hey Jonny – there is a trick you can do but you will need a food processor or a super duper blender…pour the mixture in a large secure ziplock baggie and lay it flat on a baking sheet— then put it in the freezer until frozen solid. Remove it, break apart the frozen mixture so it can fit in a food processor and process until creamy. Serve right away or return to the freezer to firm up.

      • Tara Johnson says:

        Hey Ladies! If you have kids or just want a good work out, you can pour the mix into quart size baggies and then place that baggie into a gallon size bag and shake shake shake :-)
        BTW Sue, my new husband and I are very excited to make this for our “date night” tonight!

  16. Sue, I would love this for breakfast, lunch and dinner! :) It looks amazing!

  17. I love coffee ice cream though have not made it myself. I think adding the chocolate flavor would amplify the coffee to deliver that bold flavor we love! Love the pics!

  18. Shari Kelley says:

    This looks so good, Sue! I love coffee ice cream, and you are right, most don’t have enough coffee flavor. I can’t wait to try this!

  19. You have no idea how bad I NEED this ice cream right now! It looks incredible!

  20. Monica says:

    Oh my – looks wonderful and I just love how easy it is to make! The cocoa’s got to bring out that coffee flavor. Sounds like a great balance.

  21. I’m with you, coffee ice cream is never strong enough, nor is most coffee unless I make it myself. This sounds delicious, and I have lots of espresso powder on hand, so I’ll be trying it.

  22. judith says:

    You know I want to make this (for coffee milkshake too), but no ice cream maker….I am sure you have a “fix” for this, yes?

  23. I’m always wishing for bolder coffee ice cream, so this pretty much looks like frozen perfection to me!

  24. Susan says:

    What a gorgeous post! Thanks.

  25. I always love coffee ice cream, this looks so yummy!

  26. Dear Sue – This looks absolutely delicious! I can only imagine what a milkshake with this ice-cream would taste like. A girl can dream!

  27. tanya says:

    This ice cream would make this coffee lover very, very happy.

  28. This looks and sounds delicious, Sue and I love the addition of the cocoa powder!

    • Sue says:

      Thanks Jennifer — I always add a little coffee powder to chocolate desserts to bring out the chocolate flavor, so I figured the opposite would work, too!

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