I am thrilled to share with you a recipe that will whisk you away to a beachside paradise — No-Churn Piña Colada Ice Cream. This luscious treat is a naturally vegan twist on the classic Piña Colada cocktail, blending the creamy richness of coconut milk with the sweet tang of pineapple.
Why you'll love this recipe
You will love this recipe because:
- It is the epitome of a tropical vacation in a scoop.
- It is an ice cream that is allergy friendly, seeing as it is dairy-free, egg-free, and naturally vegan.
- If you love the classic piña colada cocktail, this is the ice cream to win your heart.
- It's no-churn, no fancy equipment needed. It boasts the same creamy texture and decadent flavors as traditional ice cream but without the need for an ice cream maker.
- With every spoonful, you'll be transported to a hammock under swaying palm trees, basking in the warmth of the sun.
- It's a relatively guilt-free, refreshing indulgence that will make you crave more.
- And finally, no funny business. All natural ingredients!
- Full-fat coconut milk + sugar: Provides the creamy base for the ice cream and infuses it with the delightful taste of coconut. In other words, it's sweetened condensed coconut milk. Sweetened condensed milk is necessary for the right texture of a no-churn ice cream. Luckily we can make it with coconut milk as well! If you want, you can use regular sweetened condensed milk too.
- Pineapple Chunks: The star ingredient that lends the ice cream its signature tropical flavor. Make sure it's ripe and sweet - otherwise, opt for frozen pineapple chunks. Keep them small to minimize icing!
- Rum: Got to have the flavor of rum in a piña colada. It's also a necessary ingredient in no-churn ice creams because alcohol reduces the freezing point of the ice cream, keeping it creamier and scoopable. But don't add too much, or else it won't freeze!
- Rum Extract/Essence: Enhances the overall flavor profile, making the ice cream even more enticing without adding too much alcohol.
- Coconut Cream: Whipped to add extra fluffiness and creaminess to the ice cream, elevating it to a velvety texture.
Start by ensuring your full-fat coconut cream is chilled in the refrigerator overnight.
- Meanwhile, you'll also need to prepare the sweetened condensed coconut milk. Follow my recipe for sweetened condensed milk or buy store-bought. Either works great.
- Add a large glass bowl to your freezer for 10 minutes the next day.
- Add chunks of pineapple to your high-speed blender (or food processor), and pulse until you get a chunky pulp. Add to a large bowl, along with the sweetened condensed coconut milk, rum, and rum extract. If you want sweeter ice cream (this is not particularly sweet), mix the pineapple with ½ cup of sugar syrup (2 parts sugar, 1 part water - cooled!).
- In the cold glass bowl, pour in the fatty parts of the cold coconut cream cans. I ended up using about 1 ⅓ cans. Leave behind the watery parts (use them in smoothies!). Whip until stiff peaks, about a minute or two.
- Add about ¼ of the whipped coconut cream to the pineapple mixture and stir to combine. Now add in the rest of the whipped cream, and be careful to keep the fluff.
- Pour into a freezer-friendly pan, like a bread pan or a similar size. Let it freeze until solid, about 6 hours.
- To serve, let it thaw until scoopable on the counter. This piña colada ice cream takes longer to be scoopable than store-bought ice creams. It can take up to 30 minutes. Be patient.
- Serve with all the delicious toppings like more fresh pineapple, toasted coconut, and salted caramel sauce!
To maintain the freshness and texture of your piña colada ice cream, follow these storage tips:
- If you plan to store the ice cream for more than a few days, press a piece of parchment paper directly onto the surface of the ice cream. This helps prevent ice crystals from forming on the top.
- Avoid melting and re-freezing, the more you do that, the more crystalized it will be. So be quick to put it back into the freezer (with parchment paper) whenever you serve it.
- It can last for a couple of months in the freezer, just make sure you follow the above tips!
Can I use canned pineapple instead of frozen/fresh pineapple chunks?
Canned pineapple is the devil and should never be used for anything. Use either fresh, ripe pineapple or frozen pineapple chunks. In desperate times, canned pineapple can work, make sure you drain and pat them dry before blending.
Can I substitute another sweetener?
You can make the sweetened condensed milk with any kind of sugar; maple syrup, honey, agave, or brown sugar. I have not made it with artificial sweeteners, so I wouldn't know how to guide you there. You cannot use evaporated milk or condensed milk that hasn't been sweetened, it will not be the correct consistency for no-churn ice cream.
Can I add other mix-ins, like shredded coconut or rum?
Absolutely! Feel free to customize the ice cream with your favorite mix-ins. Shredded coconut adds extra texture. Rum is already in the recipe. If you want more rum flavor, dunk in that rum extract. Too much alcohol and it will not freeze.
You also need to be careful if you want to add more liquid to the ice cream, it may alter the consistency of the ice cream. If you can, cook it down, or use extracts instead.
- You can use whatever alcohol you have or want. But don't omit it, as the piña colada ice cream can turn rock hard without it. The dose is so small that I'd still call it kid-friendly.
- Toasted coconut flakes make for a delicious topping, adding a delightful crunch to each bite.
- Salted caramel sauce is fantastic with the flavors of coconut and pineapple.
- Try adding chunks of grilled banana on top, that sweet punch is seriously addicting!
No matter how you eat it, enjoy it!
Did you like this recipe? Here are more cold treats I think you’d love:
I’d love to hear your thoughts. Comment below or tag me @thegingerwithspice on Instagram. And don’t forget to Pin it for later! To make sure you’re never missing another recipe, please feel free to subscribe to my newsletter.
As thanks, you will receive a free e-cookbook Travels Through the Seasons, with many delicious recipes from around the world that suit different seasons of the year.
To keep the blog up and running this post may contain affiliate links, it will be at no extra cost to you, please read the disclosure for more information.