Dark chocolate ice cream delivers just the right amount of sweetness, it’s the perfect treat for chocolate lovers who enjoy a bittersweet twist.
Dark Chocolate Ice Cream
While my sweet tooth has mellowed quite a bit over the past few years, I still enjoy a piece or two of dark chocolate most days – just a bite or two goes a long way to satisfy a chocolate craving.
Dark chocolate can be a bit of an acquired taste, depending on just how dark the chocolate happens to be. And two of my kids gravitate to milk chocolate over dark. (Where did I go wrong??) They’d never reach for super dark or bittersweet chocolate on their own.
That said, I’m thrilled to tell you that this dark chocolate ice cream received rave reviews from everyone in the family. The sweet cream balances the dark chocolates excellently.
Dark Chocolate Desserts
Dark chocolate has long been my preference for baking. These Dark Chocolate Toffee Cookies are crispy, chewy cookies with a deep chocolate flavor, toffee crunch, and gooey chips.
Dark chocolate brownies are a dessert I make at least once a month – scoop some of this ice cream over them for a sundae that might make you swoon. Classic blondies are made even better with generous handfuls of chopped walnuts and dark chocolate chips.
The combination of cocoa powder and melted dark chocolate chips in this ice cream creates a deeply rich chocolate flavor. The result is quite possibly the richest chocolate ice cream I have ever made.
As the percentage of cacao increases, the chocolate becomes darker and more bitter. If you’re a die-hard fan of dark chocolate, opt for chocolate with a higher cacao percentage. In my experience making ice cream, I’ve discovered that the sweet spot for dark chocolate is usually around 60% cacao.
This strikes the desired balance between sweetness and bitterness, without veering anywhere near the overwhelming sweetness of milk chocolate. However, if you desire an even more intense and robust chocolate flavor, go for 85% cacao.
Chocolate Ice Cream Ingredients
- special dark cocoa powder
- kosher salt
- heavy cream
- dark or bittersweet chocolate chips, at least 60% cacao
- vanilla extract
These are my favorite inexpensive containers for storing ice cream. They’re perfect for gifting (who doesn’t love homemade ice cream?) storage, re-using, etc. I write the flavors on the lids with a sharpie and it washes off with dish soap.
I have more ice cream scoops than I can keep track of at this point and I definitely play favorites. This ice cream scoop does the best job ever of cutting through firm ice cream and still delivers a pretty scoop. It gets bonus points for being one of the least expensive scoops I own as well.
Don’t miss our Ice Cream Maker Review for all the information you need to find the BEST Ice Cream Maker for your needs! Spoiler alert – our top-rated machine under $50 just might surprise you. It sure surprised me!
Dark Chocolate Ice Cream Recipe
The secret to achieving the creamiest chocolate ice cream is to make sure that all of the sugar and cocoa powder fully dissolve into the creamy base. So, before you even begin cooking, whisk together the sugar, dark cocoa powder, and salt, making sure there are no lumps.
Add the heavy cream, whisk to combine, and heat until simmering. Stir the mixture constantly while it simmers, as this will burn quite easily if left alone. If you wish, you may increase the heat, but continue stirring non-stop. Do not step away at this point. Simmer until the sugar and cocoa powder have completely dissolved into the cream.
Remove from the heat and add the chocolate; stirring until completely melted. Whisk in the milk and vanilla. Next, cool the mixture COMPLETELY before attempting to churn it. I recommend refrigerating it for at least 4 hours or overnight until completely cold.
When you are ready to make the ice cream, process the chocolate ice cream base according to your machine’s instructions. You can dive into it straight out of the machine for soft serve style ice cream, or chill it in the freezer to let it firm up before serving.
Hands down, the best way to enjoy chocolate ice cream is topped with Peanut Butter Ice Cream Topping. With just 3 ingredients and about 2 minutes of effort, this salty, sweet, completely irresistible peanut butter topping is chocolate’s best friend.
A scoop of dark chocolate ice cream makes the most amazing affogato – ice cream with a shot of espresso poured over it. Tiny cups of affogato are a real treat after a fancy meal or for a late-night indulgence.
Chocolate Ice Cream Recipes
Classic chocolate ice cream makes a great base for all kinds of add-ins. From cookies to berries, hot fudge swirls to caramel, there’s no end to the fun things we can mix into ice cream when we’re craving something a little different.
Rich chocolate and peanut butter ice cream with chocolate and peanut butter chunks mixed throughout is a dream come true for any ice cream lover. Swap in some almonds and a hint of cinnamon for a Dark Chocolate Almond delight.
This delightful recipe for Chunky Monkey Ice Cream is the perfect indulgence. Rich banana ice cream, decadent chocolate chunks, and crunchy walnuts create a tantalizing dessert you won’t soon forget.
Combining chocolate with unexpected ingredients has led to some fun combinations. Spicy Chocolate Ice Cream is cold, creamy chocolate with a surprise hint of spicy heat from chili and cinnamon. Rich, dark, ultra-smooth, and creamy chocolate meets a hint of orange in sweet ice cream like no other you’ve ever tasted.
For dairy-free or vegan chocolate ice cream options, this Dairy Free Chocolate Ice Cream doesn’t taste dairy-free at all – and it doesn’t have even a hint of coconut. Yes, it is possible and it is fantastic too.
Made without a drop of cream or milk, this Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream is a non-dairy and accidentally vegan ice cream that my boys devour.
Crunchy, chewy Oreo pieces and chunks of decadent brownie mingle together in every scoop of this Oreo Brownie Ice Cream.
Dark Chocolate Ice Cream
- ⅓ cup special dark cocoa powder
- ¾ cup sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1½ cups heavy cream
- ½ cup dark or bittersweet chocolate chips at least 60% cacao
- 1½ cups milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- In a large saucepan, whisk together the cocoa, sugar, and salt. Add the cream and whisk to combine. Heat over medium heat, stirring continually, until it comes together and begins to steam and simmer. If you wish, you may increase the heat, but continue stirring non-stop. Do not step away at this point.
- Remove from the heat and immediately add the chocolate. Whisk until the chocolate has completely melted. Stir in the milk and vanilla. Cool and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight until completely cold.
- Process the mixture according to your machine’s instructions. Serve immediately for soft-serve ice cream or transfer to a freezer-safe storage container and freeze until ready to serve.