Easy No-Cook Chocolate Ice Cream

Scoops of creamy chocolate ice cream piled up in a serving bowl

The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Chill & Freeze Time: 2 hrs
Total: 2 hrs 10 mins
Servings: 10 servings
Yield: 1 quart
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
279 Calories
19g Fat
26g Carbs
3g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 10
Amount per serving
Calories 279
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 19g 24%
Saturated Fat 12g 58%
Cholesterol 57mg 19%
Sodium 29mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 26g 9%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 23g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 0mg 1%
Calcium 73mg 6%
Iron 2mg 8%
Potassium 95mg 2%
*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.)

Homemade ice cream is a wonderful frozen treat, but most recipes call for using several egg yolks and cooking the mixture on the stove. This chocolate ice cream recipe has only five basic ingredients and can be put together in just a few minutes. You don't need any eggs and there's no cooking of custard on the stovetop. The recipe is so easy, it will likely become a staple recipe for anyone interested in making homemade ice cream, which also means it's great for beginners—especially those who love chocolate.

In this recipe, cocoa powder is combined with the rest of the ingredients, which include whole milk, sugar, heavy cream, and vanilla extract, which keeps it simple. Although delicious served as is, there are many mix-ins that you can add to this recipe to customize the flavor. Fold in a ribbon of chocolate syrup after the ice cream is frozen, add a handful of chocolate chips, or even toss in a few roughly chopped chocolate sandwich cookies to up the chocolate factor to your liking.


Click Play to See This Chocolate Ice Cream Recipe Come Together

"This ice cream had great flavor and texture and was very easy to prepare and freeze. Whisking the cocoa into the milk isn't instant, but it does dissolve after a few minutes. My ice cream maker took 30 minutes, and then I froze it for 2 hours to harden. It was perfect!" —Diana Rattray

Easy no-cook chocolate ice cream
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 1 cup granulated sugar

  • 2 cups heavy cream

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for chocolate ice cream recipe gathered

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  2. Whisk together the milk, cocoa powder, and sugar. Whisk until the sugar and cocoa completely dissolve.

    Milk, cocoa powder, and sugar being stirred together in a glass bowl with a wire whisk

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  3. In a large bowl, beat the heavy cream until it forms stiff peaks. Fold the whipped cream along with the vanilla extract into the cocoa powder mixture.

    Spoonfuls of stiffly whipped cream added to chocolate mixture in a glass bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  4. Refrigerate the mixture for at least 30 minutes so it is completely cold. This will help it freeze faster, improve the texture, and allow the cocoa powder to become fully hydrated by the milk and cream.

    Creamy, homogenous chocolate and whipped cream mixture in a glass bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  5. Give the ice cream base one more gentle stir and freeze according to the directions of your ice cream maker—about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

    Hardened chocolate ice cream in the freezer bowl of an ice cream maker

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  6. Store your ice cream in an airtight plastic container in the back of the freezer. This will help preserve the flavor and texture of the finished ice cream. You can serve the chocolate ice cream right from the ice cream maker, but it will have the texture of soft serve. Freezing for an hour before serving will create a firmer texture.

    Chocolate ice cream being scooped from a square plastic container with a metal ice cream scoop

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck


  • The key to great chocolate ice cream is buying good cocoa powder. If you have had an open container of cocoa powder sitting in your cupboard for countless months, it's time to replace it. Cocoa powder loses its potency over time. You can tell it is getting older when the color starts to fade from its original deep chocolate hue.
  • The milk-sugar-cocoa mixture should be smooth and fully dissolved. Otherwise, the texture of the ice cream will be off. Mixing these three ingredients separately from the others allows them to get to the appropriate consistency before combining them with the cream and vanilla.
  • Add any mix-ins you like but only after the ice cream has been through the ice cream maker.

Recipe Variations

  • Although the recipe calls for whole milk, you can use whatever type of milk you have on hand. The ice cream may not be quite as creamy, but the recipe will still work.
  • Once you've mastered this basic recipe, you can start getting creative by changing things up. For example, try adding a teaspoon of instant coffee or espresso powder for a richer chocolate flavor.
  • To give your ice cream some texture, add caramel, marshmallows, chopped nuts, dried fruit, broken up pretzels—whatever you like.