Creamy, Dreamy Cherry Chocolate Chip Ice Cream to Help You Beat the Heat

Now that summer is upon us, it’s time to beat the heat however we can. And when a beach vacation isn’t on the radar, what could be better than a creamy, light, and refreshing ice cream?

Vertical top-down image of a white bowl of ice cream with a spoon stuck into it with a small white bowl of cherries and more of the frozen dessert with a scoop in a metal loaf pan in the background, on a red and white checkered tablecloth.

Every time I hear the ice cream truck going around my neighborhood, I honestly still get that little surge of excitement in me. When you hear the sound of the truck in the distance, it’s pretty hard to stop yourself from drooling.

Am I alone in this?

Vertical image of a red dish of ice cream with a spoon, with more of the frozen dessert in a metal loaf pan next to a small white dish of black cherries, on a table topped with a red and white cloth.

Of course, seeing kids from the neighborhood run up to an ice cream truck at full speed with excitement in their eyes is pretty normal. Seeing a thirty-something woman flagging down the truck with earnest jubilation might be a little weird.

Though at least I would be getting my exercise to offset the calorie intake…

Instead, let’s all agree that it’s time to indulge a little, embrace that sweet tooth, and hop on the cherry bandwagon while the season is still going strong.

This ice cream is one of the best ways to capture the rich, deep, and slightly sweet flavors of fresh cherries.

Top-down shot of a scoop of ice cream in a ramekin with a spoon, beside a loaf pan of more of the dessert and a small white bowl of black cherries behind it, on a white and red checkered cloth.

You start by making a syrup that’s more complex than simple, comprised of a variety of flavorful sweeteners. And then you infuse this syrup with the fresh fruit, allowing them to steep briefly, elevating it to a whole new level of goodness.

At the same time, the cherries are glazed with the syrup, so they have an added sweetness that is simply irresistible.

With the combination of the delicious syrup and the fresh glazed fruit, you get a double hit of cherry flavor that everyone will go nuts for.

To top it all off, what pairs better with cherries than dark chocolate?

A spoon full of ice cream is held up to the camera, with a bowlful and a loaf pan full, alongside a small white bowl of whole cherries, on a table topped with a red and white checkered cloth.

Honestly, when it comes to dessert, not much. The dark chocolate and the fruit complement each other so well with their rich flavors.

The bitterness of the dark chocolate, the tartness of the cherries, and the overall sweet flavor elements make this ice cream one of my favorites to bust out during the summer.

It doesn’t matter if you serve this creamy, dreamy ice cream in a a classic waffle cone or a bowl – any way you serve it offers a direct route the heart of whomever takes a lick or spoonful.

A red and white ramekin of homemade ice cream with a spoon, next to a metal loaf pan of more of the frozen dessert, and a white bowl of black cherries, on a white and red checkered tablecloth.

Aside from using the freshest cherries you can get your hands on (the farmers market is an excellent option for this, when in season), my recommendation is to invest in a really nice bar of dark chocolate. If you are someone who loves more bitterness, go for a chocolate that is 80 to 90% cacao.

For a little less bitterness, you can go for 60 to 70% cacao.

Another option, for those of you who aren’t on this bandwagon completely, is to try out a mixture of dark and milk chocolate. You’ll get a little extra sweetness and a bit of bitterness to counter the tart flavor of the cherries.

Honestly, any type of chocolate goes with cherries, so embrace whatever tastes best in your opinion.

You could even use white instead of dark or milk, if that’s more your speed. In fact, this would probably make an amazing combo with golden Rainier cherries…

Any way you try it, this is a frozen dessert that you’ll want to make a staple in your home every single summer.

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A red ramekin of cherry chocolate ice cream with a metal loaf pin of the same in the background, and a small white bowl of black cherries, on a red and white checkered cloth.

Cherry Chocolate Chip Ice Cream


  • Author: Shanna Mallon
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 hrs, 40 min
  • Yield: 8 servings
  • Category: Ice Cream
  • Method: Freezer, Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Desserts

Description

Celebrate the sweetness of fresh seasonal produce by making homemade Cherry Chocolate Chip Ice Cream. You’ll savor each spoonful. And this recipe can be enjoyed with or without an ice cream maker!


Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/8 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup fresh Bing cherries, pitted and halved
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 5 oz mini semisweet chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine sugar, honey, and maple syrup. When the sugar has dissolved, turn the heat down to low and add the cherries. Continue to cook for 5-10 minutes, until the syrup thickens and the fruit has infused it with flavor while giving the cherries a nice glaze.
  2. Remove from the heat and strain, reserving the syrup. Set aside to cool, then place the syrup and the cherries in the refrigerator in separate bowls to cool completely.
  3. In a mixing bowl, whisk the eggs until light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes. Gradually whisk in the chilled syrup mixture, then continue whisking until completely blended, about 1 minute more.
  4. Pour in the cream and milk, and whisk to blend.
  5. Transfer the mixture to a freezer–safe container, cover, and pop it in the freezer for about 20 minutes.
  6. Place the cooled mixture in your ice cream maker, and freeze according to manufacturer’s directions.
  7. Or, for a no-churn option without an ice cream maker: Mix for 5 minutes with a hand mixer, then place back in the freezer for 20 more minutes or up to 3 hours, depending on the temperature of your freezer. Repeat this process three or four times, until the ice cream has the thick, creamy texture you want.
  8. When the mixture has an airy and stiff texture (or about 2 minutes before it is done if using the machine method), add the chocolate and the cherries, and continue to churn/mix in until combined. Serve immediately for a soft-serve style dessert or place back in the freezer until firm, for 2-4 hours.
  9. When you are ready to serve, if it is too firm to get your scoop in there, set it on the counter to thaw for a few minutes.

Notes

Adapted from Ben and Jerry’s Homemade Ice Cream and Dessert Book.

Cooking By the Numbers…

Step 1 – Prep and Measure Ingredients

If you are using an ice cream maker, make sure the components are frozen or prepped according to the manufacturer’s directions. Sometimes this requires 24 hours of advance chill time, so be prepared!

Unless you are using chips, chop the chocolate into fine pieces. Place in a bowl and set aside.

Pit the cherries, then halve them. Place in another bowl.

A glass bowl of chopped dark chocolate and a matching bowl of dark red cherries that have been cut in half, on a gray speckled white background.

This can be done by hand with a paring knife, but I prefer to pit them with a handy little kitchen gadget that’s designed for this purpose. You lose less fruit that way, and it’s less time consuming!

Measure the remaining ingredients, so they are ready when you need them. No surprises this way! (Nothing’s worse than reaching for the sugar that you need for a recipe when you’re halfway through making it, only to realize that the sugar bowl is empty. I’m sure you can relate.).

Step 2 – Make Syrup

Add the sugar, honey, and maple syrup to a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk occasionally, until the sugar melts.

Add the cherries to the saucepan, and let them cook in the syrup until it thickens and the fruit is glazed well.

Black cherries cut in half in a glass bowl with pink syrup.

Strain through a colander or fine mesh strainer, reserving the syrup.

Place the cherries back in their bowl and the syrup in another container, and allow to cool on the countertop. When they’re no longer steaming, place in the refrigerator to cool completely.

Step 3 – Create the Base

In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs for 1 to 2 minutes, until light and fluffy.

Vertical image of yellow beaten egg in a light blue glass bowl with a wire whisk.

Whisk in the cooled syrup a little at a time, until blended well.

A foamy red cherry syrup in a blue glass bowl with a wire whisk.

Pour in the cream and milk, and whisk to combine.

Top-down shot of a light blue glass bowl of a white cream mixture, with a silver-colored wire whisk.

Place in the freezer for about 20 minutes to chill.

Step 4 – Churn (or Mix and Freeze)

Add the base mixture to your ice cream maker, and churn according to the instructions that came with the machine.

A white plastic dasher rests at the center of a white and gray freezer container of pink cherry and chocolate ice cream.

About 2 minutes before the churning process is complete, add the chocolate and halved cherries.

A pale pink ice cream mixture in a frozen white and gray canister, with pieces of cherry and chocolate.

If you don’t have an ice cream maker, alternate “churning” with a hand mixer and returning to the freezer for several intervals until you create the texture that you are looking for, then stir to combine with the add-ins.

Step 5 – Freeze

Scoop into a loaf pan or airtight container, and cover tightly with a lid or plastic wrap.

Top-down view of a metal loaf pan filled with pink homemade ice cream, speckled with chocolate and topped with glazed black cherry halves arranged in a diamond pattern.

Place in the freezer for at least 2-4 more hours before serving, if you like a firm texture.

Fruity Frozen Desserts Are All The Rage

This year, fruity frozen desserts are in. From cherries to blueberries, raspberries to strawberries, and every fruit in between, frozen fruity desserts are the best way to close out a summer meal.

A red ramekin of ice cream with a metal loaf pin of the same in the background, and a small white bowl of black cherries, on a red and white checkered cloth.

If you can’t get enough once you’ve tried this delicious dessert, be sure to check out a few more of our favorite recipes below:

Don’t have an ice cream maker? We are here to teach you how to choose a top rated model so you make the best, most informed decision you can for sweet, frozen deliciousness all summer long. These machines really are time savers!

And if you have a little extra time on your hands while that frozen treat is churning away or firming up in the freezer, there’s no better dessert pairing than a generous slice of pie. Try our cherry version, flavored with a touch of white balsamic vinegar to bring out the tartness of the fruit. It’s an amazing combo.

White Balsamic Black Cherry Pie | Foodal.com
Photo credit: Kendall Vanderslice

White Balsamic Cherry Pie – Get the Recipe Now

And if you still have more fruit left over from your pick-your-own adventures, make a batch of flavored cream cheese, or try these homemade maraschinos. These can also be candied, and they make the perfect topping for classic cookies.

What kind of chocolate would you love to try in this dessert? Tell us in the comments below, and leave a five-star rating as well if you loved it!

Photos by Meghan Bassett and Kendall Vanderslice, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on June 30th, 2010. Last updated: June 21, 2018 at 18:41 pm. With additional writing and editing by Allison Sidhu.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

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About Meghan Bassett

Meghan Bassett is a food addict turned food and travel writer with a love for creating uncomplicated, gourmet recipes and devouring anything the world serves up. As the author of the food and travel blog Cake 'n Knife, Meghan focuses on unique foodie experiences from around the world to right at home in your own kitchen.

40 thoughts on “Creamy, Dreamy Cherry Chocolate Chip Ice Cream to Help You Beat the Heat

  1. CONGRATULATIONS!!!! You’re amazing, lady! This is so fantastic and I know it’s going to turn out brilliantly for you. It’s my dream to do the same and I’m plotting and figuring out a way to make it happen. You’re an inspiration though. Lots of love and good blessings!

  2. Congrats! I did the same thing. Being self-employed isn’t always easy, but the challenges make living the dream even sweeter…

  3. Yay! My heart leaps with joy for you. I think it’s amazing that you’ll be able to have all the Casual Tuesdays you want to, to be working and living on your own terms more than you ever have before. And I’ll certainly be reading along, following this new adventure of yours. 🙂

  4. Good luck Shannalee! I admire your courage and I’m sure you’ll make this work 🙂 Can’t wait to read more about it!

  5. Hooray for you! What a bold and worthy step.

    Can’t wait for your new adventure to begin.

  6. “Leap and the net will appear.”

    Shanna, this is such wonderful news. I hope to live vicariously through you working in your pyjamas now and again.

  7. ya know, murdo and i were just talking about risks the other day. the white sox general manager was being interviewed on TV, and he was asked something about taking risks, and he said something along the lines of, “of course i’m taking a risk. does anyone achieve anything truly great without taking risks?” and we liked that.

    good for you, shanna, for taking that risk. you’ve got some great achievements in your future, i can feel it!

  8. Congratulations and good luck! I think it’s wonderful that you are taking control of your life in this way. I think your rewards will outweigh your challenges.

  9. Best of luck to you! I always think of the 3rd Indiana Jones movie, where he stands at the abyss with no way across, then glances down at the journal in his hand and declares “It’s a leap of faith.” He swallows hard, steps out and lands on the unseen bridge. The relief that washes over his face never fails to take my breath away. I kind of know how that feels, and how you must feel. I have no doubt that you will succeed.

  10. Wow! Congrats Shanna! On top of the exciting news, this was such a great post! I love the reflection about how we are spending our lives.

  11. Audaces fortuna iuvat: Fortune Favors the bold! Congratulations! I have no doubt that you will get several more clients. Your writing is fantastic….anyone would be lucky to hire you! And thanks for the message about being young and daring…I needed to hear it!

  12. You really do inspire me. All I can say is that I’m so glad I met you, and I’m so glad we got a chance to talk about our health conditions and our diets and our passion for eating healthy and natural. You’ve helped me in more ways than you know, seriously. I don’t even know how to begin telling you how much you helped, just by listening, and just by understanding and relating when we’d talk about kombucha and fermentation and all those other crazy topics that no one else understands. Ahhh, I”m starting to tear up! And now this blog. I’m really going to try and take on your positive persepective. I know that I am lucky to work from home and it gives me so many opportunities that other people don’t have, and I’m so so so happy for you that you get to do it now too. Just a warning though: it becomes very easy to stay in your PJs all day and miss showers on some days! 🙂 Can’t wait to see what new recipes come from your extra time in the kitchen.

  13. A big congratulations to you! It’s a big step but so rewarding. Plus it’s so good for one’s own self. Anyone who takes the time to reflect and find out what they want to do before jumping into it knows they are doing the right thing. I wish you all the best in your endeavor and look forward to more of your writing on this blog!

  14. Congrats Shanna. With your talents, no doubt you will be successful whatever you do, wherever you do it, and for whomever you do it. And by the way…your life has improved someone else’s (mine) for a long time now.

  15. Gosh, you’re so brave! Good luck! I’m definitely bookmarking this recipe, it seems pretty low fuss actually! How do you think it would fair using a lower fat milk or half and half for the cream portion? I imagine it would probably affect the creamy consistency?

  16. Well done Shannalee,
    what a great adventure. I will be praying for you and for more writing jobs to come your way as you begin a new chapter.
    I love reading what you have to say and look forward to future writings from you.

  17. Hiya… lovely post, and lovely idea for your life. I’m looking forward to all the wonderful things you will be doing and all the cooking that you now will have time to do while you write at home! I’m in a similar situation, and just quit my job this week to become self-employed. So, we can toast to each other over the interwebs! 🙂

  18. I am SO very excited for you, Shanna!! I’m sure you will flourish in this new stage & find lots of new inspirations. 🙂

  19. Hooray for taking the leap! I’ve been self-employed now for over 5 years and I love it. I was pushed into it because of a lay-off but I love your gumption! Hooray. Did I also mention that your ice cream looks amazing?

  20. brilliant. congratulations, lady. i can only imagine the joy and relief you feel (sans any anxiety you may be feeling).

    Leap and the net will appear.

  21. This is so exciting Shannalee! I wish you all the best in your new self employed life. It is something I have been dreaming of. Maybe one day… Gx

  22. Super super excited. I’m about to tell you that over email, but I thought I’d join the rest of your cheerleaders here in saying congratulations.

  23. Tim and I are so proud of you Shanna! I know it’s a big risk – but I totally agree with your dad! I think you’ll be great and get plenty of work in no time 😉

    ps- I just bought some cherries and wasn’t sure what to do with them. NOW I do! And thanks for including the method without the ice cream maker -because I don’t have one 😉

  24. Congrats Shannalee! This is so exciting, you’re going to do great! I hope you enjoy every minute of it.

    By the way, this ice cream sounds so good I’m afraid to make it because I’ll eat the whole thing haha

  25. Congratulations, Shannalee! May your leap into the unknown make you happier than you could ever have expected and may clients line up at your door! I’ll certainly keep you in mind when I need to hire copywriters. Let me know if you’ve got another site up with your pro portfolio. 😉

    And the ice cream looks amazing…I’ve made my own (dairy-free) version of Cherry Garcia for a few years now, and this is a wonderful reminder to churn up another batch.

  26. i was reading the post under this one, i bake gluten free for myself because i have to, and i’ve always wanted to cut the sugar, but its hard for me to replace white sugar with things because everything is so damn expensive! even a small jar of honey is a load. dispite the fact that there are sugar cane fields on every side of me, finding raw sugar is not easy and is annoyingly expensive…

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