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One-Ingredient Banana Ice Cream Recipe (Without An Ice Cream Maker)

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Today we’re sharing one of the most magical dessert recipes on the planet—homemade banana ice cream (or “nice cream” as many people call it). This simple vegan dessert recipe is by no means unique—rather it’s one that every human being should know and love.

You can make soft serve style ice cream in minutes without an ice cream maker. All you need is a food processor or a high-powered blender with a tamper and some frozen bananas.

Sadly, many people have never tried this magic. That’s a tragedy, really. So, here it is for all to try and enjoy!

This frozen banana nice cream is made with one single ingredient, tastes like soft serve ice cream, and is actually healthy. That’s right, you can dig in for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or even as a late night snack without the guilt. The recipe (or directions, rather) is below. Enjoy!

Delightful Banana Ice Cream Flavors

The beauty of this recipe is that the bananas form a beautiful base that can spun in many different directions by adding in additional ingredients. Simply by adding some fruit, nut butter, cocoa powder, or extracts you can make: 

  • Chocolate Banana Ice Cream
  • Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream
  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream
  • Vanilla Ice Cream
  • Peppermint Ice Cream 
  • Mango Banana Ice Cream
  • Strawberry Banana Ice Cream

…and so much more. This ice cream making technique is versatile and you really can’t go wrong! 

Tempting Toppings for Your Nice Cream

Ice cream is always better with toppings, so layer them on! Here are a few of our favorites:

You can serve this vegan ice cream in a bowl (I love using coconut bowls), in a cup, in a cone, or serve it up smoothie-bowl style! 

Vegan chocolate mms no nos banana ice cream

How to Make Banana Ice Cream

Use super-ripe bananas

While any frozen bananas will work for this recipe, your banana ice cream will taste best if you use super-ripe spotty bananas. Bananas can be nearly all brown, and they will still work beautifully in this recipe. The longer bananas ripen, the sweeter they get.

Peel ands slice up your ripe bananas and freeze them for at least 24 hours before making your nice cream. I keep frozen bananas in the freezer all the time so banana soft serve is always just moments away! 

Blend in a food processor (or high-powered blender)

If you have a food processor, use that. A food processor is designed to blend up thicker foods without  much  liquid, whereas most blenders demand a lot of liquid to get things moving. You can toss your frozen bananas into your food processor and blend them without any milk, which creates the thickest creamiest banana ice cream! If you’d like to add a splash of milk, or any add-ins (like cocoa powder), just add them into the food processor with the bananas. 

Note: hold your food processor down with your hand while you’re blending, because at the beginning the frozen banana chunks will fly wildly around. Soon enough they will get chopped up become a soft cream. Continue blending until the banana ice cream turns a lighter color, which you’ll see happen quickly. 

If you have a high-powered blender with a tamper, such as a Vitamix, that will work too! Although you will s till have an easier time blending if you add a splash of your favorite plant-based milk (soymilk, almondmilk, oatmilk, coconut milk, cashew milk, etc). 

Banana Nice Cream Ingredients and How to Illustration World of Vegan Art

Serve Up Your Nice Cream!

Once it’s ready the banana ice cream will be a soft serve consistency. It should be thick and velvety smooth without any chunks. Scoop it into a bowl (we love coconut bowls!) or an ice cream cone, add your favorite toppings, and enjoy immediately! 

Banana ice cream does not store or save well, so lap up every last bit! It’s healthy, so you don’t have to worry about over-indulging. Go back for seconds or thirds guilt-free! The best healthy dessert ever.  

Homemade Banana Ice Cream Recipe

Author: Michelle Cehn
5 from 6 votes
This one-ingredient homemade banana ice cream is one my my favorite vegan dessert recipes. It tastes like soft serve! Get creative with mix-ins like peanut butter, cocoa powder, or frozen fruit. If you have the goods, you can even make this into a full sundae with vegan chocolate sauce, peanuts, coconut whipped cream, sprinkles, and a cherry on top. Go wild!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 1 serving

Ingredients

  • 2 ripe, spotty bananas, peeled, sliced and frozen
  • A splash of plant-based milk, if needed.

Optional add-ins

  • cocoa powder
  • peanut butter
  • fresh or frozen fruit

Instructions

  • Advance Prep: Allow bananas to ripen and get spotty, and then peel, chop, and freeze them.
  • In a food processor or high-powered blender, add the frozen chopped bananas. You’ll need at least two bananas for this to work. You may be fighting your appliance in the beginning, but keep going—it will be worthwhile! Pulse or blend until you have a thick, creamy ice cream. Scoop into a bowl or ice cream cone, garnish with your favorite toppings, and enjoy immediately.

Notes

  • Don't have a food processor or Vitamix blender? A regular blender will do the job, with some extra effort. You’ll most likely need to add a few splashes of soymilk to get things moving. Add one tablespoon of soymilk at a time so you’re not adding more than you need. The more milk you add, the thinner the ice cream will be.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword banana, dairy-free, nice cream, vegan ice cream, vegan soft serve

Make This Banana Nice Cream Recipe Into a MILKSHAKE!

If you’d prefer to drink your ice cream, you can easily turn this into a sippable vegan milkshake by adding some plant-based milk. Soymilk, almond milk, cashew milk, coconut milk, flax milk—any type of milk will work, and you just need a bit! The more you add, the less thick your homemade dairy-free milkshake will be. Easy peasy!

More Vegan Banana Recipes:

If you’re hungry for more delicious vegan dessert recipes, you can find lots here on World of Vegan as well as in our e-cookbook, Plant Based on A Budget Desserts. Cheers!

Banana ice cream recipe photos by Michelle Cehn, copyright of World of Vegan™, all rights reserved. Article edited by Amanda Meth. Please note that this article contains an affiliate link which helps support our work at World of Vegan.

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Recipe Rating




6 comments
  1. 5 stars
    I loveeee nice cream! I’ve got frozen bananas in the fridge ready to go for this one!!

  2. Beatriz Buono-Core says:

    5 stars
    Banana nicecream is the best sweet treat! I like adding some cacao powder and peanut butter to mine 🙂

  3. 5 stars
    Banana Nice cream!!!! for the Win! It’s the best sweet tooth craving fix

  4. 5 stars
    Delicious and healthy at the same time? This is really a dream dessert and I love that you can add different flavorings and toppings. Never boring and always so good! I keep frozen bananas in my freezer at all times – yum!

  5. 5 stars
    The best best best dessert! We eat this ALL the time. I most often make it in my food processor because I find that easier than the blender—even with a high powered vitamix with a tamper.

  6. 5 stars
    This is the easiest dessert to make, ever! So good and economical!