Blue Moon Ice Cream Recipe

Blue Moon Ice Cream in a cone

The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Chill/Freeze: 16 hrs 30 mins
Total: 16 hrs 50 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Yield: 1 quart
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
299 Calories
24g Fat
16g Carbs
5g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 299
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 24g 31%
Saturated Fat 15g 74%
Cholesterol 140mg 47%
Sodium 51mg 2%
Total Carbohydrate 16g 6%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 16g
Protein 5g
Vitamin C 0mg 2%
Calcium 84mg 6%
Iron 0mg 2%
Potassium 119mg 3%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Blue moon ice cream is a unique ice cream flavor typically found in the Upper Midwest portion of the United States. It is said to have originated in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and is known for its signature bright blue hue. The distinctive flavor and is made with a combination of artificial raspberry flavoring, lemon extract, and vanilla extract. Some describe the flavor as "tutti-frutti," cotton candy-like, bubble gum, or similar to Fruit Loops or Fruity Pebbles. Of course, blue food coloring is added until the desired shade of blue is achieved. Although it is usually only found in ice cream shops in the Midwest, it is easy to churn your own blue moon ice cream at home using an ice cream maker. And scooping it into a waffle cone makes it even better.

"Blue moon ice cream was a delicious, whimsical treat. The various extracts balanced the overall flavor nicely, and it was rich and silky smooth. It requires a cooked custard base, which was easy and took very little time. Miniature marshmallows would make it even more delightful." —Diana Rattray

blue moon ice cream
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 2 large egg yolks

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 2 cups heavy cream

  • 1 cup whole milk

  • 1 tablespoon instant vanilla pudding mix

  • 1 teaspoon raspberry flavoring

  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract

  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • Blue food coloring, as desired

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Blue Moon Ice Cream ingredients in bowls

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  2. In a medium bowl lightly beat the egg yolks with 1/4 cup of the sugar and set aside.

    Egg yolks and sugar mixture in a glass bowl with a whisk

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  3. In a medium saucepan whisk together the cream, milk, and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar. Heat the mixture over medium-low heat until bubbles begin to form along the edges of the pan.

    Cream, sugar and milk in a saucepan with a whisk

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  4. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly. Add the warm cream mixture to the eggs 1 tablespoon at a time while whisking constantly to temper the eggs.

    Cream and egg mixtures combined in a glass bowl with a whisk

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  5. Once the cream mixture and eggs have been combined, return them to the saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture coats back of a spoon and a line drawn with a finger leaves a clean trail. The mixture should register between 170 F to 175 F. Do not allow the mixture to overheat.

    Cream mixture in a saucepan with a wooden spoon

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  6. Pour the custard into a medium bowl and whisk in vanilla pudding mix until thoroughly combined. Whisk in the raspberry flavoring, lemon extract, vanilla extract, and blue food coloring until combined and the desired blue color is achieved.

    Blue custard in a glass bowl with a whisk

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  7. Let the mixture cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Cover and refrigerate until completely chilled, up to overnight.

    Blue custard in a glass bowl with a wooden spoon

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  8. Churn the chilled custard according to the manufacturer's instructions for your ice cream maker. It will take about 25 minutes, or longer.

    Blue Moon Ice Cream in an ice cream maker

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  9. Transfer the ice cream into a covered container. Freeze for at least 3 hours, or up to overnight to fully set.

    Blue Moon Ice Cream in a container

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

Recipe Tip

Prior to making the ice cream, place the bowl of your ice cream maker in the freezer overnight.

Recipe Variations

  • If miniature marshmallows are added to blue moon ice cream it is often referred to as "Smurf ice cream."
  • Sometimes blue moon ice cream is swirled with lemon and cherry ice cream to create the colorful "Superman ice cream," made to reflect the colors of the superhero costume.

How to Freeze Homemade Ice Cream

  • Freeze homemade ice cream in a specialty ice cream container, a covered freezer container, or a loaf pan covered with foil.
  • To prevent exposure to air and the formation of ice crystals, press a sheet of plastic wrap over the ice cream before covering with the lid or foil.
  • Label homemade ice cream with the name and date and freeze it for up to 2 months.