Blackberry Basil Honey Ice Cream

blackberry honey ice cream

Anne Leonard

I don’t know about you, but I’ve got a whole lot of basil on my hands. Whether it’s tossed in my eggs with some feta crumbles or in a cocktail, basil is everywhere at our table...and there’s still more to go around! So I figured the best solution to my basil blues was to infuse a blackberry honey ice cream in hopes of trimming down my basil wealth while also honoring blackberry season.

Once I switched on self-control from practically inhaling the quart of blackberries we purchased from the farmer’s market, I was able to reserve a handful. This recipe is simple, really, but the flavor marriage between the blackberries and fresh basil doused in wildflower honey is a match made in culinary heaven. The ice cream has a pleasant basil aftertaste and a floral dose of sweetness from the honey while the berries add a lovely, almost lavender hue and a crunch from the plump seeds.

Like most of the recipes I produce, you can make it work for you. Steep the basil in the morning and have some breakfast while you wait. Mix in the rest of the ingredients, cover and refrigerate to your heart’s content—well at least for a couple hours. I whipped this up after the husband and I returned home from a dinner out. We grabbed the container, ate it by the spoonful over the kitchen sink and went to bed utterly satisfied.

Yield: about 1 quart



1 cup whole milk

1 cup fresh basil

1/2 cup wildflower honey (I used Gunter’s Pure Wildflower Honey)

1/2 tbsp vanilla extract

4 egg yolks

Pinch of salt

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

A heaping cup of blackberries, mashed



In a medium saucepan bring milk to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in basil leaves. Cover and allow to steep for 30 minutes. Strain leaves from milk. If you’d like a more present basil flavor, blend the basil leaves and milk together, but for the purpose of highlighting the blackberries, I strained.

In a medium bowl, whisk honey, vanilla extract, yolks, salt and heavy cream. Transfer mixture and add to the basil-infused milk in the saucepan. Continuously stir on low-medium heat until a custard forms. It should be able to coat the back of a spoon. Cover and refrigerate until chilled for at least two hours.

Pour into ice cream maker, and churn until a thick, creamy consistency is reached, about 20–30 minutes. Add in mashed blackberries, and churn for a couple more minutes until the berries are evenly mixed. Store in an airtight container, and freeze for at least two hours.

Before serving, let stand in room temperature for 5–10 minutes to soften. Garnish with a basil leaf and maybe a generous drizzle of honey. 

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