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Coconut Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

dairy-free coconut chocolate chip ice cream recipe

This Coconut Chocolate Chip Ice Cream is the perfect refreshment for a hot summer day.  Since every child in the neighborhood seems to be at my house at present, bouncing on our trampoline, it is going to make the perfect afternoon snack in a few short minutes.

It’s fun (and super easy) to make dairy free ice cream from coconut milk.  Low in sugar, and high in protein and good fat, I feel great about feeding it to the gang.

Coconut Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

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  1. Place coconut milk, eggs, coconut sugar, vanilla, and salt in a vitamix
  2. Blend thoroughly until smooth and well combined
  3. Briefly blend in chocolate chips, so that they are smaller pieces
  4. Process according to the directions of your ice cream maker
  5. Serve –garnish with unsweetened shredded coconut if desired

You may notice there are raw eggs in this recipe.  If that does not work for you, feel free to come up with your own fix for it.  Given that I test every recipe numerous times before I post it here, it’s just not possible for me to test your substitution questions.  And unfortunately, the only way to get the answer to those types of questions is to do an actual experiment –if you do try substitutions, please be sure to stop back by and leave a comment letting us all know if it worked!

If you are looking for gluten free recipes, be sure to check out my recipes page, it may contain just what you are looking for.

Here are some more dairy free ice cream recipes from other food bloggers:
-Fresh Mint Ice Cream (Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, Vegan, Cane-Sugar-Free) from Sally of Aprovechar
-Peanut Butter and Jelly Ice Cream (Dairy-Free and Vegan) from Alta of Tasty Eats at Home
-{Dairy-Free} Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream from Alice of Savory Sweet Life


posted on July 5, 2011, 81 comments

  1. meredith

    How much stevia? Looks great!

  2. Wow, that is some seriously creamy-looking, beautiful ice cream! The proportions sound just sweet enough, and with all that coconut milk and egg yolk, I’ll bet it’s very satisfying — a tiny serving is probably enough, huh? Does the recipe make about a pint?

  3. Katie

    Just curious, why the eggs? My family and I have egg allergies and sensitivities so we use substitutes. I never used eggs or egg-replacer in any of my ice cream recipes. Would I use a replacer in this recipe? Thank you for all your info, ideas, and recipes!

    • no, I don’t think the replacer would work, I don’t think I would even try it- the eggs make it richer. You could do it w/out and I am sure it would be good, it just wont be as rich.

      jenetta

      • Seadanes

        It’s not just richness, it’s also creaminess. You need a certain amount of fat in ice cream, and coconut milk doesn’t have as much fat as heavy cream, so the eggs will help create a creaminess instead of an icy mouthfeel.

        • Christine

          Full fat coconut milk might work very well in this without the eggs. Really, as long as you don’t go with the light stuff there is quite a bit of fat in coconut milk. There are a lot of coconut milk ice cream recipes that don’t have eggs in them.

          I’m going to try a recipe similar to this using full fat coconut milk and no eggs.

          • Katie

            I make Coconut Milk Ice Cream all the time and it is perfect without eggs. Totally perfect. I would go ahead and try it without the eggs with absolutely no reservations. We use regular coconut milk, and my husband (picky and with no food restrictions) was just commenting that coconut milk makes such a perfectly textured Ice Cream, not at all icy, and perfectly creamy.

    • JP

      Just replace the eggs with a small avocado or half a large one – creamy and healthy! :)

    • Erica Gomez

      You don’t always need the eggs. To make a great substitute that still adds creamyness and body to the ice cream you can just use cashews. Soak 1/2 cup of cashews for 2-4 hours, drain and use in place of the eggs. It works just as good and still taste delish!

    • Sara Ross

      I make ice cream quite often, and I don’t use eggs. Just coconut milk, vanilla, honey, maple syrup, or coconut sugar and whatever flavor I want. I’m sure the eggs make it creamier, richer, something, I don’t know. But rest assured that sans eggs it is a luscious treat. It has been a hit with everyone I’ve served it to! Even my picky chef husband. :)

  4. This looks fantastic! I have never tried a non-dairy ice cream with eggs in it. What do the eggs do for it? Thanks for writing your fabulous books! I took a chocolate cream pie with crunchy almond crust (from the almond flour cookbook) to our family 4th of July gathering. I had to split it into 16 pieces because everyone was dying for a taste!! 16 thumbs up!

  5. This looks delightful and easy. I’m thrilled that it calls for palm sugar. Guess I’ll have to add another dessert to this week’s plans.

  6. Can’t wait to try this with friends on a summer backyard cookout. This will definitely round out the evening. This looks so delicious!!

  7. If you don’t want your eggs raw- you can create kind of an “anglaise” with the coconut milk and egg yolks and suga. You will jsut need to cool it before you freeze it.

    http://www.frugalfreebiesanddeals.com/2011/05/gluten-free-pina-colada-bread-pudding-with-coconut-creme-anglaise-and-a-huge-favor.html

    jenetta

    • Susan

      Making a creme anglais is a great idea. I did just that today as I had some leftover yolks I needed to use….after chilling it, I poured into ice cream maker & voila–nothing better than vanilla ice cream imho!! There was a great recipe using coconut oil for magic shell type topping. If I’d had time…now that would have been the ultimate.

      • Jim

        Another no-egg custard like choice is to use a couple of tablespoons of cream cheese and a tablespoon of arrowroot powder in a slurry. The cream cheese makes it scoopable and the arrowroot thickens it. Like a normal custard it must be cooked to become thick.

        • Isa

          yes, but the whole point of using coconut milk to make ice-cream (for many of us), is to have a dairy free ice cream
          With the cream cheese, it’s not dairy free anymore :(

  8. Josie Marsh @ wooly-baby.com

    Does this freeze well? I made a coconut ice cream lately and it got so hard in the freezer. Maybe the eggs help with that. Thank you!

  9. Davina

    I don’t have an ice cream maker, does anyone know what else I can use to make this. The recipe sounds lovely, I have all the ingredients and a blender, but no ice cream maker! Thanks.

    • Trinka

      Any container that is freezer safe will do. Simply pour and freeze as usual. Do not mix or you will get ice crystals. I’ve even made this in a freezer Zip Loc type of bag so I could cut the corner and “soft -serve” right into the comes or bowls. To do this, take a 2 gallon zip loc bag and add ice cubes( 2 trays worth) and rock salt. In another 1 gallon bag, pour the blended mix. Zip it shut and place the mix bag into the 2 gallon bag with salt and ice. Zip shut but leave about 1 inch open for air to move freely. Knead and squish bags until you have soft-serve style ice cream ( yes, the kids can do this too!) Unzip ice and salt bag, pull out ice cream bag and dry with a towel. Cut the corner and squeeze into cones or bowls! Enjoy……………

  10. Renae

    This looks fabulous, Elena! I had never thought to put egg yolks in my coconut milk ice creams before! Will definitely be trying this soon!

    I also want to thank you for all the work you put into these recipes! I haven’t yet had a recipe I tried that wasn’t fabulous! After going gluten-free and realizing that even the gluten-free grains were causing symptoms, I didn’t know what I was going to do. But then I found your website. I also really appreciate that you’re starting to use sweeteners other than agave. I’ve read the big debate post, so I understand your side. Just the same, I do appreciate your attempts to make us agave-phobes happy.

    Thanks for all you do!

  11. Wheatless Foodie @ wheatlessfoodie.blogspot.com

    Thank you for sharing this recipe! I’ve recently had to give up milk products, so I’m looking for alternatives – especially for ice cream.

    Your disclaimer about the eggs made me laugh. My recipes get those kinds of questions as well, and after making and tweaking a recipe several times to get it just right before posting, I’m never really sure how to respond to the questions about changing ingredients.

  12. My mouth is watering. The drip of ice cream down the side of the bowl is just too much! I’m going to have to try this sans ice cream maker:P

  13. Gayle Martin @ comingsoon!!

    I recently bought a whole bunch of coconut milk beverage instead of the canned stuff. Other than drink it what else can I use it for?

  14. Ahhh! I wish that I had kept the coupon for the ice cream maker at Costco this month! It’s one of those things that I look at every year and can’t justify buying it. Then, you post this recipe and all I can think about is the $6-off ice cream maker coupon I threw away a few weeks ago.

    Anyways, this look delicious. I also wanted to let you know that I flipped through your new cookbook at B&N the other day and added it to my amazon wish list. Your recipes are always to-die-for. Have a great night!

  15. Suzie Carlson

    I have been making an ice cream recipe from the book called “Lick It”, and the basic recipe is this:
    1-14oz can full fat coconut milk
    1 and 1/4 cups non-dairy milk (I use So Delicious Coconut Milk Beverage)
    1/2 cup granulated sugar OR agave syrup (I have always used agave and it turns out great!)
    1 Tb vanilla extract

    I also add about a 1/2-1 ts of raw vanilla powder…it gives it the ‘flakes’ of vanilla that you see in ‘real’ ice cream.
    This recipe turns out awesome, and I use the ice cream to make healthy smoothies, like this one:
    1 cup raw almond milk
    1/2-1 cup coconut ice cream
    1 cup frozen organic strawberries
    1 large Tb raw dehydrated beet powder
    1 Tb or to taste raw coconut sugar

    Ohhhh YUMMM!! It’s SO good!!
    Right now, as I type this, I just happened to finish up this smoothie:
    1 cup raw almond milk
    1/2-1 cup coconut ice cream
    1 Tb Lucuma powder
    1-2 Tb raw coconut powder
    1 heaping Tb raw cacao powder
    6-10 fresh mint leaves (I have several kinds of mint, and tonite I used chocolate mint leaves).

    There are many more recipes in the book I mentioned (I only mention it because it might help someone else; I don’t profit in any way–just wanna help spread good info). I hope this helps someone, esp those like me who can’t have eggs. Oh, and I LOVE Elana’s book–have made a LOT of things out of it! Thanks Elana, for all you do to give us great recipes!!

  16. Linda:-)

    Those worried about using raw eggs, can try using whole liquid pasteurized eggs if your local store carries it. I haven’t tried this but it should work since you use the same as you would regular eggs.

  17. So excited to try this. My lactose intolerant stomach thanks you :)

  18. yum

    I just got back from a trip to the Mediterranean, and while we were in Malta one of my travel companions got some coconut chocolate chip gelato that looked really good. Chocolate and coconut go so well together!

  19. Concerning substitutions, being diabetic, and still wanting sweets, I make cupcakes from your book with the following substitution:
    1/2 cupt agave = 1/4 cup spenda + 1/4 cup xylitol + 1/4 cup water.

  20. Shirley @ gfe @ glutenfreeeasily.com

    Gorgeous, Elana! I agree with Jamie on that drip of ice cream … irresistible!

    xoxo,
    Shirley

  21. Whole Foods Market of Boulder @ wholefoodsmarket.com/wfmboulder

    This looks amazingly creamy and delicious. I may have to try out this recipe on my own at home. Thanks! -Ryan @ WFM Boulder

  22. Gasp! This looks like an amazing recipe! You have put great ideas into my head!

    Now I just want to make ice-cream…and nibble on it ALL day!

  23. I could eat a quart of this – in one sitting – no problem!

  24. Alioxn

    That looks phenomenal! Thanks for all your wonderful recipes. Everytime I feel like eating something I know I shouldn’t, I think of your website and it helps me to remeber that eating gluten free doens’t have to be torture! In fact it’s quite wonderful, thanks to you!!!!!

  25. Debbie T. @ dptaylor2@gmail.com

    I love the idea of adding a little alcohol to keep from freezing too hard. Would vodka have the least noticeable flavor in this recipe or another alcohol? Also, I have LIGHT coconut milk (canned) in my pantry from Trader Joe’s (only ingredients are coconut milk and water, no guar gum, etc.)—anyone know if it will work in this recipe?
    Thanks so much!!!

  26. Victoria @ glutendairyfreedom.net @ glutendairyfreedom.net

    WOWZA! I’ve been secretly dreaming of finding a way to make my own dairy-free ice cream and this has definitely got the wheels turning! I have been sticking with baked gluten and dairy free desserts, and I’ve posted a bunch of recipes on my blog http://www.glutendairyfreedom.net, but I haven’t really delved into the wonderful world of summer desserts. Thanks so much for sharing this Elana! I can’t wait to try it out!

  27. Suzie Carlson

    The recipe I posted in my comment, the one WITHOUT eggs, really needs the full fat coconut milk for it to work.
    If you do the recipe as I posted (full fat coconut milk, So Delicious coconut beverage, agave, and vanilla), then use an ice cream maker, the ice cream comes out rich and creamy…very delicious! I’ve never tried using another can of coconut milk in place of the beverage, but I would guess that would make it even creamier. I’ll have to try it some time.
    I’m sure eggs would certainly make it creamy, but since I don’t eat eggs, and raw eggs at that, this recipe works for me, and tastes JUST like the two popular brands of coconut dairy free ice cream. I LOVE those, but they’re just too expensive.
    I would highly suggest not even trying the light coconut milk…I think you’ll be highly disappointed!

  28. Suzie Carlson

    Christine,
    I posted earlier with a recipe that doesn’t use eggs. I failed to mention that you needed to scroll up and look for it. I’m including my previous post here so you have the recipe. I’ve made it a LOT, and it works very well! I also included 2 smoothie recipes, which I’m reposting as well. Enjoy!!
    ——————–
    I have been making an ice cream recipe from the book called “Lick It”, and the basic recipe is this:
    1-14oz can full fat coconut milk
    1 and 1/4 cups non-dairy milk (I use So Delicious Coconut Milk Beverage)
    1/2 cup granulated sugar OR agave syrup (I have always used agave and it turns out great!)
    1 Tb vanilla extract
    I also add about a 1/2-1 ts of raw vanilla powder…it gives it the ‘flakes’ of vanilla that you see in ‘real’ ice cream.
    This recipe turns out awesome, and I use the ice cream to make healthy smoothies, like this one:
    1 cup raw almond milk
    1/2-1 cup coconut ice cream
    1 cup frozen organic strawberries
    1 large Tb raw dehydrated beet powder
    1 Tb or to taste raw coconut sugar
    Ohhhh YUMMM!! It’s SO good!!
    Right now, as I type this, I just happened to finish up this smoothie:
    1 cup raw almond milk
    1/2-1 cup coconut ice cream
    1 Tb Lucuma powder
    1-2 Tb raw coconut powder
    1 heaping Tb raw cacao powder
    6-10 fresh mint leaves (I have several kinds of mint, and tonite I used chocolate mint leaves).

  29. Your cookbooks are gems! I made your carrot cake with coconut frosting and it was fantastic! I posted a photo of a slice on my site :)

  30. Amy Timms

    This was a hit! I did not have the palm sugar, so I used agave nectar instead. I actually used 1/4 of a cup because I do like my ice cream sweet. We also used Heath Bar pieces instead of chocolate chips. Num!

  31. I made your carrot cake with coconut frosting from your book. It was amazing! I posted a photo of a slice on my site blog :)

  32. Wendie Manion

    I made this Monday night without sugar it was fantastic! Im a little worried now that I read all the posts about it being hard, I have a lot left in the freezer and I was looking forward to having that tonight

  33. AnnMarie Deis

    I made a version similar to this (from a different blog!), but it turned out a little bit grainy. Was it perhaps due to the coconut milk’s consistency? I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why the grainy texture!!! BUT the taste was yummy!

  34. My husband will love this. I just made a batch of vanilla coconut ice cream this weekend (because I love vanilla). He adds chocolate chips to his. Making this will make him sooooo happy!

  35. CMommy

    Thank you for posting this. As soon as it hit my email, I was on a mission to create this. Thing is, living in FL, I suddenly wanted something fresh, so at the last minute, instead of chocolate I threw in pineapple, banana and fresh shredded coconut. HOLY COW!!! This recipe is thick, rich and delicious. My company LOVED it and wants me to make more. I did cook it first (brought the milk to a scald, added the milk slowly drizzling into the beaten eggs, reincorporated it, brought it back to a boil then let it cool). – Also, I used 8 drops liquid stevia, and 1 tbsp of organic sugar instead of palm sugar.

    Thank you SO much for this amazing recipe, it’s a huge hit at my house now.

  36. Stephanie Worth

    I just made this recipe. It is a little bit ‘icy’ in texture. I used classic coconut milk.

  37. Hannah Holistic @ HannahHolistic.blogspot.com

    A wonderful and simple recipe. The only thing I changed (because I ran out of coconut sugar right before making this) is I used the same amount of raw honey. Great honey taste with a subtle coconut and chocolate component. I also loved the chocolate chip texture after they were in smaller pieces–reminds me of something I can’t quite put my finger on, and it’s certainly easier to eat than rock hard pieces of chocolate. My daughter and husband both loved it, too.

    • Shelea

      I also used honey because I didn’t have coconut palm sugar and added 1/2 a cup of unsweetened shredded coconut – it was delicious! I made another batch with strawberries instead of chocolate and it was also delicious! This is a great recipe! Thanks, Elana!

  38. I love ice cream! Nice picture

  39. J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) @ j3nn.net

    That sounds so delicious! Chocolate pieces/chips are one of my favorite things to mix in ice cream. YUM!

  40. Pam

    I did some reading about ice cream being too hard once frozen. I found a website http://allrecipes.com/HowTo/homemade-ice-cream/detail.aspx with people giving several suggestions to keep it from being too hard. Ranged from adding eggs, using real maple syrup, etc. Here’s one response:

    “i;ve had much success with ice cream making. Common problems that lead to rock-hard ice cream is because your ice cream maker is not chilled cold enough. When it churns the mixture you should see it gradually hardening from the sides of the canister. A wall of ice cream textured layer should form. If this doesn’t happen within a few minutes, then the canister is not cold enough. Common mistake is to let it continue mixing “hoping” it is done. If the mixture is then frozen from this liquid state, the resulting ice cream becomes hard because you technically didn’t churn it at all.
    Remember, if you can pour the mixture after churning, it is NOT done right. It should be a 80% solid paste that you have to scoop with a spatula in order for a nice texture and easy scooping. I’m making my 10th batch of ice cream in 3 months.
    Have fun !”

  41. We made this last night! So rich and sooooo good! Thanks for sharing another great idea!

  42. Coconut milk ice cream has been a new staple in my freezer! I use the base recipe of 2 cans light coconut milk, 1/2 cup sugar, pinch of salt, tst of vanilla. I haven’t needed to use eggs (don’t eat them anyway so I wouldn’t know if one works better than the other) but I’ve made a ton of creations using this “vanilla” base, including a delish chocolate chip cookie dough using dark chocolate chips and some cookie dough Larabars cut up and mixed in.

    • Debbie T. @ dptaylor2@gmail.com

      Janel,
      How long do you have to let your frozen ice cream sit out before you can dish it? I made the following: 1 can EACH of regular and light coconut milk, 1/2 cup sugar, 2 T. cocoa and a dash of cinnamon. It gets quite hard after freezing but is yummy. Anyway, I prefer the light coconut milk because I get it cheap at Trader Joe’s and there’s no additives.

  43. Debbie T.

    Janel,
    One more thing–care to share the combinations you’ve made? And how does the plain vanilla taste? Thanks!

  44. Kezia

    I’ve just made this and it is SO good:) Thanks Elana!

  45. Erica Kindler @ glutenfreelovinit.com

    what a great recipe. i tweeked it a little by replacing chocolate with mango bits. the result was similar to the thai desert mango sticky rice, but in ice cream form! thanks elana!

  46. Tabitha

    It worked fine without the eggs. I used full fat Thai Kitchen milk and Enjoy life chocolate chips. Ironically it was eaten by everyone but the birthday boy. He was content with his cake pops (Elana’s version except for the strawberry preserves) and hasn’t tried it yet.

  47. Sariah Rose

    I never thought I would be able to find someone who is as picky as I am with what I eat (gluten, dairy, sugar free vegan)! It is SO hard to find recipes! Your blog is Perfect!!!!! Thank YOU!!! I love that you have a link to where to buy the stuff or what exactly it is!

  48. Michelle

    Wow — just made this and it was fantastic! I substituted about 4 Tbs real maple syrup for the palm sugar, and added a little raw cocoa powder. So delicious! My kids aren’t big coconut milk fans, but they didn’t even realize this was coconut milk ice cream.

  49. Ellen

    This sounds just like what I was looking for. I wanted a recipe with eggs for added richness and this sounds perfect. Thank you!

  50. Mary

    I made this yesterday with Guittard’s extra dark chocolate chips and honey in place of the sugar.

    I, and the family, love it!

  51. Elana – this looks so good. I have never made ice cream with coconut milk. I think I will start here!

  52. Jane

    I just made this with my milk-allergic toddler and it was delicious! Thanks for the easy, tasty recipe!

  53. Alissabeth

    Did anyone use Thai Kitchen organic coconut milk? I’m getting a slightly bitter taste from the chocolate chip coconut ice cream recipe I just made.

  54. Stefania

    Hi!! I made this with chocolate coconut milk (coconut dream brand) and added chunks of your brownies as well, it was phenomenal! The only issue is that once I put it in the freezer it became rock hard, do you have any suggestions on what I could have added to make it more “creamier” like dairy ice cream? Thanks and so far I have made 6 of your bread and cookie recipes and all have been delicious!

  55. Patti B.

    I’ve made this recipe now several times over the summer and it is my favorite ice cream recipe. Thank you for sharing it, Elana!!

  56. Laura

    Great recipe. I substituted maple syrup for the palm sugar and it was delicious, will definitely be making it again and trying more flavors. Thanks:)

  57. Marci F

    Oh my, you’ve inspired me to dust off the ice cream maker!! I will be trying this with full-fat coconut milk, sans eggs.

    Any thoughts on maybe using coconut cream to replace the “richness” the eggs bring to the recipe?

  58. Suzi

    But can you do it without a Vitamix? In the UK they are hard to find and WAY out my budget! I get so excited about your recipes, scroll down, and there it is – Vitamix – instant disappointment!

  59. Raquel

    Love it! I made it last weekend for my 29th birthday (without the chocolates and honey instead of coconut sugar) great success!! I´ve been in Paleo for 2 months and I haven´t felt this great in years, I thought I had to give up ice cream but not anymore! Elana your website is great for special days :D thanks a lot! kisses from Madrid, Spain

  60. JasJ

    Tried this last night.
    It is delicious!!!
    The most delicious coconut milk based ice-cream Iv’e made. It’s so creamy and fluffy!
    Yum!

  61. Shelley

    I don’t have a Vitamix…(I know..POOR ME!!)
    I do have a magic bullet
    I don’t have an ice cream maker…(I know…even SADDER yet)
    Any suggestions for making home made ice cream. I REALLY want to!!

    Thanks…..

  62. Miss B

    I am assuming that a food processor, can take the place of a vitamix. Please give me a thumbs up on that. Alternatives to an ice cream maker may prove to be more difficult, and amazon will not deliver where I live. Suggestions please.

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Comments are greatly appreciated! Unfortunately Elana is not able to answer substitution questions, as the only way to know if something works is to test it, and she does not provide this service. If you have a substitution question, please don't hesitate to leave a comment here, and another reader may jump in to answer. ↑ back to top