A rich keto chocolate ice cream with delicious chunks of peanut butter swirled throughout. A few special tricks help keep this sugar free ice cream soft enough to scoop after freezing.
I’m having a little fun these days going back through old recipes, seeing if I can update them and make them even better. I’ve learned a lot through my experiments with low carb, gluten-free ingredients over the past couple of years and there are a few recipes way back in the archives that give me pain. As in “they weren’t quite what I hoped they would be and the photos are hideous and if I had known then what I know now” kind of pain. This recipe wasn’t quite that bad. In fact, it was quite good and I was pretty happy with it at the time. But it was one I always meant to get back to and try to make a little better. Because hey, it affords me the opportunity to make and eat outrageous amounts of chocolate and peanut butter. I thought my photos from this old recipe for low carb Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream recipe were pretty good back then. But I think they are just a wee bit better now, don’t you?
So last week, to my children’s delight, I set about making low carb Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream again. My intention was to amp up both the chocolate flavour and the chocolate colour, while also making the ice cream softer and more scoopable. I may have learned a lot of the past few years but apparently I have yet to learn to check all of my ingredients before I set about making a recipe. I intended to make this with Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa, as that will give anything a richer, darker chocolate colour. But I discovered I was out and I had to use Ghirardelli instead. Still, I increased the cocoa powder somewhat and I added chopped unsweetened chocolate and it definitely improved the chocolate flavour.
As for keeping it more scoopable after freezing, I pulled out all the tricks I know. The first trick is to start with a really thick custard base. Using more heavy cream and less almond milk goes a long way to thickening the base, as does the cocoa powder and the unsweetened chocolate. Then adding a little alcohol and some xanthan gum, both of which are known to keep sugar-free ice cream from freezing too hard. If you choose not to use the alcohol or the xanthan gum because you lack them or are intolerant to them, that’s okay. It won’t affect the flavour, but it will mean that your ice cream will freeze more solidly and you will need to let it sit on the counter for 10 minutes before trying to scoop it. A little trick I’ve learned there is to divvy it up into portion-size containers before it freezes too hard, so you don’t have to thaw the whole lot each and every time.
So the moral of the story is I can make this ice cream more chocolatey, more scoopable and I can take much better photos of it. And that if you want it to be darker chocolate in appearance, make sure you have your Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa on hand before you set about making it!
Keto Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream
- 1 ¾ cups heavy cream
- ¾ cup unsweetened almond milk
- ½ cup Swerve Sweetener
- ¼ cup BochaSweet or allulose
- ¼ cup cocoa powder
- 3 egg yolks
- 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate finely chopped
- 2 tablespoon vodka
- ½ teaspoon xanthan gum
- ½ cup peanut butter
- Set a medium bowl in a large container of ice water.
- Whisk cream, almond milk, sweeteners and cocoa powder in a medium saucepan until cocoa powder is mostly dissolved. Over medium heat, stir occasionally and heat until mixture is steaming but not simmering, or 170F on a candy thermometer.
- Whisk egg yolks in a small bowl until smooth. Very slowly whisk in 1 cup of the hot cream mixture to temper the yolks. Then slowly whisk tempered yolks back into cream mixture, stirring constantly. Continue to cook until very hot, 175 – 180F.
- Add chopped chocolate and let sit 1 minute to melt, then whisk to combine.
- Pour mixture into bowl in ice bath and let cool 10 minutes then wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 3 hours.
- When ready to churn, remove custard from fridge and add vodka, stirring to combine. Sprinkle with xanthan gum and whisk vigorously to combine.
- Pour mixture into canister of an ice cream maker and churn according to manufacturer's directions. When ice cream is about the consistency of soft serve, transfer half to an airtight container.
- Working quickly, add about half the peanut butter by spoonfuls. Add the remaining ice cream and the remaining peanut butter and swirl with a knife to spread evenly.
- Press plastic wrap flush to the surface and freeze until firm, 1 to 2 hours.
- Leftovers will freeze hard but not unscoopable.
What ice cream maker do you use. I think I better get one…this recipe sounds amazing
The standard cuisinart model works well.
Mary Margaret says
I just started Keto and bought your book “Keto Baking” be when I read in the preface “ I was mourning a very important part of my identity: my baking self.… My love of baking was a huge part of who I was – how could I be me without it?“. So true. I was a HUGE bread, pie and dessert maker. I am learning a lot from the book. Thank you.
I made your chocolate and peanut butter ice cream and it was unbelievable! So creamy and delicious. No one knew it was sugar-free.
My question is there are no fat grams listed in the Nutritional Facts. What are the # of grams per serving?
Thank you for the baking “text book” and wonderful site.
Could we substitute the peanut butter with almond butter?
Your other ice cream recipes have about 2 tablespoons of vodka but this one calls for 4. Is there a reason for this
There’s always a reason for things. This helps keep it softer.
I made this for my father on Father’s Day and he loved it. I did too! The depth of chocolate flavor was fantastic, and I liked the way you added in the peanut butter so that it did not completely mix in and disappear. I’m certain I will make it again. Thank you Carolyn!
So glad you liked it!
Leslie Baker says
Caroline I made this recipe just a few days ago at a friends house who had the ice cream machine. She does not like peanut butter so we just make the chocolate base. Once it was frozen it still tasted bitter and not sweet like the commercial sugar free ice creams. I was disappointed. Today I sweetened some trader joes sugar free peanut butter with powdered swerve and poured some over a serving of my chocolate and what do you know “I think I like it”. Thanks for making this sugar free journey a little easier. Leslie
Kenya Marlow says
What is a serving size? Half a cup? I just put this recipe in cronometer and I’m coming up with 17 net grams of carbs per serving?!?! What am I doing wrong?
You’re not subtracting the erythritol. Yes, a serving is about 1/2 cup.
Joanie Noble says
Is the amount of vodka correct here? Made this & tasted good but had a pretty strong alcohol taste. Just seemed like a lot for the small amount of ice cream
Pam Vienneau says
What about using flavored vodka – like chocolate? I don’t have any vodka in the house so I was wondering if I should get that for a more chocolatety flavor?
Rebecca Wyatt says
This sounds absolutely wonderful, but I’m really sensitive (taste-wise) to sweetners that aren’t real sugar. I can taste them a mile away (stevia is one of the worst!) I’m not eating sugar and I miss it and would love to know if Swerve is really, really safe and doesn’t set off artificial sweetener alarm bells! I’ve looked it up online, but can’t decide if it’s worth the investment or not. I’d appreciate your thoughts… thanks!
Hi Rebecca. Every palate is different so there is no way I can assure you that Swerve won’t taste like something to you. For me, however, it was the ONLY sweetener that didn’t leave an aftertaste. That’s why I love it. Many readers find the same, whereas other readers prefer other sweeteners. It’s a matter of experimentation.
Rebecca Wyatt says
Thank you! I’ll buy a bag and give it a try. We’re trying very hard to stay low carb and I miss dessert!
Gigi Varnum says
Have you tried Bochasweet, Rebecca? It’s a 1:1 exchange with sugar, and it’s the only non-sugar sweetener I’ve found with no weird aftertaste. Even swerve has a fairly strong “cooling” effect I avoid.
I just made this (minus the P.B.) and it was amazing! I couldn’t stop licking the spoon, ice cream maker bowl, and churning piece. So good!
What if you don’t have an ice cream maker to churn it?
You really do need one for this.