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Fun and sweet, this birthday cake ice cream is an honest-to-goodness dream boat in a cone! This birthday cake ice cream tastes like cake batter; frozen, creamy, insanely delicious cake batter. The best part is, it's not just reserved for the kids!
You will need an ice cream maker for this homemade ice cream recipe, and you might be surprised at some of the ingredients, but it makes the best scoops you've had in a good long time!
Don't let the name fool you, birthday cake ice cream can be enjoyed whenever you feel like it – birthday or no birthday!
The recipe was adapted from a pineapple ice cream from Jeni Britton Bauer's Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home. Her ice cream method involves using some unusual (in ice cream) ingredients like cornstarch and cream cheese, but it makes the creamiest ice cream ever.
What does birthday cake ice cream taste like?
Not a silly question! Some people really enjoy cake, others ice cream, and some like cake and ice cream together. Well, this birthday cake ice cream takes “cake and ice cream” quite literally.
Think of a vanilla birthday cake – it's rich, moist, buttery, sweet, and overall a good time! Give that flavor profile an ice cream texture, and there you have it! Birthday cake ice cream is everything you love about classic vanilla birthday cake packed into a cool treat.
If you sit firmly on the cake side (or want a dairy-free birthday cake flavored option) try making this birthday cake popcorn! It's just as fun!
What is birthday cake ice cream made from?
Some of these ingredients might make you raise an eyebrow, but have faith that this ice cream will satisfy every ice cream dream you've ever had!
- Whole milk: This provides the base of the ice cream.
- Cornstarch: This is one of the ingredients that isn't super common in homemade ice cream, however, it really helps keep the ice cream nice and creamy.
- Heavy cream: This is also known as heavy whipping cream and the high fat content makes the ice cream creamy and rich. It also enhances the vanilla flavor.
- Sugar: Sweet sweet sugar. A key ingredient in any classic ice cream recipe.
- Sea salt: Balance the sweetness of the sugar and richness of the cream with a little salt.
- Cream cheese: Another interesting inclusion for an ice cream recipe, cream cheese helps give a super, silky smooth texture.
- White cake mix: You'll incorporate the cake mix right before you refrigerate the ice cream. You can use store-bought, boxed cake mix for this recipe to keep things easy. If you have yellow bake mix on hand, it can be used instead, however, the color may be slightly different than what's pictured here.
How to make homemade birthday cake ice cream
Cake batter ice cream comes together in no time – but – don't expect to eat it right away, it needs time in the freezer to do its thing. Here's how to make it:
- Mix milk and cornstarch: In a small bowl mix two tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch and it set aside.
- Bring ingredients to a boil: Add the remaining milk, cream, sugar, and sea salt. Bring it to a boil then add the cream cheese. Stir it until the cream cheese has fully melted. Add the cornstarch mixture to the pot and let it boil for 1 minute.
- Add the cake mix and refrigerate: Whisk in the white cake mix, then refrigerate until it's completely cold, at least 4 hours.
- Pull out your ice cream maker: Make the ice cream according to your ice cream maker manufacturer's instructions.
- Freeze: Put the ice cream into a freezer-proof container, like a loaf pan, and then freeze until it's firm, about 4 hours.
Toppings and decorations for birthday cake ice cream
This is possibly the best part of birthday cake ice cream! You can go to town and get really creative with how you want to decorate or top your homemade ice cream. Here are some ideas to get your creative juices flowing:
- Rainbow sprinkles
- Whip cream
- Chocolate sauce
- Crumbled cake or cookies, like Oreos or Golden Oreos
- If you're a peanut fan, try adding some chopped honey roasted peanuts on top
- Consider making birthday cake ice cream sandwiches. Place your ice cream between two cookies! Yum!
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 ¼ cups heavy cream
- ⅓ cup sugar
- A pinch sea salt
- 3 tablespoons cream cheese
- 1 ½ cups white cake mix
- Optional: sprinkles
- In a small bowl mix two tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch and it set aside.2 cups whole milk, 1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch
- In a large saucepan over medium-high heat add the remaining milk, cream, sugar, and sea salt. Bring it to a boil then add the cream cheese. Stir it until the cream cheese has fully melted, about 4 minutes. Add the cornstarch mixture to the pot and let it boil for 1 minute.1 ¼ cups heavy cream, ⅓ cup sugar, A pinch sea salt, 3 tablespoons cream cheese
- Remove the pot from the heat, whisk in the white cake mix, then refrigerate until completely it's cold, at least 4 hours.1 ½ cups white cake mix
- Process the ice cream according to your ice cream maker manufacturer's instructions.
- Transfer the ice cream to a freezer-proof container then freeze until it's firm, about 4 hours. (You can eat it right away, but it will be very soft.) Top with sprinkles and enjoy!Optional: sprinkles
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.