Ice Cream Cake Recipe
Summer is in full swing and there is no better time to indulge in a delicious ice cream cake than right now! Super fun to make and even more fun to eat, this tasty frozen dessert is sure to be welcomed at every gathering from now until fall: BBQs, potlucks, holidays and birthday parties!
Frozen desserts are always a treat but during the hot summer months we consider them a necessity. This show stopper of a dessert features a brownie bottom, lots of cookies, ice cream and it’s all topped with a whipped cream topping.
The best part about this ice cream cake recipe is that it’s easily customizable – just use your favorite flavors of ice cream!
What You’ll Love About This Recipe
This recipe is a summer time favorite for so many reasons:
- Simple to prepare. Although time consuming because of that freezing time that is needed, this cake is really a breeze to make as long as you allow yourself enough time to make it. It’s not something you want to try to pull together the day you’re serving it.
- Can be made in advance. I love that this this cake can be made days before and pulled out when you’re ready.
- Total kid pleaser. You want to impress some kids? Show up with this cake! It’s sure to get loads of praise from kids and adults alike.
Ice Cream Recipes
We always buy a ton of ice cream for our ice cream parties and what’s better than ice cream? Ice Cream Cake of course! If you love ice cream as much as we do, check out these ice cream inspired recipes:
- No Churn Vanilla Ice Cream
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream Cake
- Brookie Ice Cream Sandwich
- Monster Cookie Dough Ice Cream
- Turtle Brownie Ice Cream
Easy Summer Dessert
An ice cream cake is really more about assembling store bought ingredients than doing any real serious hands on stuff, which makes it great for busy summers.
Instead of cake, we did a brownie bottom because, hello, a brownie ice cream cake recipe is what dreams are made of. It’s fudgy, rich and the perfect complement to all the toppings about to piled on it. Think brownie sundae…
Does Ice Cream Cake Have Cake In It?
The answer really depends on YOU. Either way is fine! I like ice cream cake any way I can get it. The cake can be made with just layers of ice cream and toppings, OR it can have a layer of cake or brownie as well.
What You’ll Need
This simple and easy Ice Cream Cake recipe is just perfect for summer and super customizable – use your favorite flavors! As always, you can find the full printable recipe with complete instructions in the recipe card at the end of this post. Let’s take a look at what you’ll need…
- brownie box mix – prepared as directed and cooled OR make up homemade brownies instead. These Fudgy Brownies would be perfect!
- Oreos – roughly chopped.
- hot fudge topping – room temperature or warmed slightly if needed.
- ice cream – about 3 quarts, slightly softened (should be spreadable).
- salted caramel sauce – room temperature or warmed slightly if needed.
For the whipped cream topping:
- heavy whipping cream
- powdered sugar
- vanilla extract
Let’s Talk Layers
This cake has a total of six layers:
- brownie bottom – can be made with a boxed mix or homemade
- crushed OREOs + hot fudge topping – can use store bought hot fudge topping or make your own
- ice cream – I used Breyers 2-in-1 Oreo and Chips Ahoy, but you could use another flavor if you prefer
- salted caramel sauce (can be omitted if you prefer) – store bought or make your own (for something a little different, try my Buttermilk Bourbon Caramel Sauce)
- whipped cream topping – I used fresh whipped cream but you can also use frozen whipped topping
- Oreo cookie crumbs enough said. You can also use additional whipped cream and mini cookies to decorate
How Do You Make a Homemade Ice Cream Cake?
You do have to think ahead of time because you will need to freeze each individual layer for the best results. Here is what the basic time frame looks like:
- Bake brownies and let cool. Pop in freezer for 30 minutes.
- Combine hot fudge and crushed Oreos, and spread over the top of the brownies. Freeze for 1 hour.
- Spread slightly softened ice cream on top of hot fudge/Oreo layer, and freeze for AT LEAST 6 hours, preferably overnight. You want it really firm.
Day 2 (serving day!):
- Spread salted caramel over the top of the frozen ice cream layer. Freeze for at least 30 minutes.
- Prepare whipped cream. Spread over the top of the salted caramel layer when ready to serve.
- Decorate with cookies, salted caramel and hot fudge drizzles if you’d like. You can pop that back in the freezer for about 30 minutes if you’d like the whipped cream to firm up. It doesn’t take long!
This cake may sound like a lot of work, but all in all, it’s about 20 minutes if you’re going the store bought brownie route.
Store in your freezer, tightly wrapped or in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks. Allow about 10 minutes at room temperature before cutting and serving.
How To Make an Ice Cream Cake Without Cake
If you prefer to leave out the cake portion of this recipe (in this case, brownies), you can easily substitute in another layer of ice cream. Just choose a complementary flavor. You can also just omit that layer entirely.
More Must Make Summer Desserts
- Key Lime Fruit Dip
- Strawberry Shortcake
- Mini Strawberry Pies
- Blueberry Hand Pies
- Chocolate Chip No Bake Cheesecake
- Lemon Pie
- Pina Colada Cake
How To Make Ice Cream Cake
Easy Ice Cream Cake
- 20 ounce brownie mix box mix, prepared as directed
- 15 Oreos roughly chopped
- 13 ounces hot fudge topping room temperature or warmed slightly if needed
- 3 quarts ice cream slightly softened (should be spreadable)
- 12 ounces salted caramel sauce room temperature or warmed slightly if needed
- 1 pint heavy whipping cream
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Prepare brownie mix as directed and bake in a 9 x 13 pan for 19-22 minutes or until edges appear done and center isn't quite set. Let cool completely and then freeze for 30 minutes.
- Spread hot fudge topping on top of the brownies and top with chopped Oreos. Use an offset spatula to really press the cookies into the hot fudge topping. Smooth out the top and freeze for at least 30 minutes.
- Spread ice cream over the hot fudge layer. Smooth out the top with an offset spatula. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for at least six hours, preferably over night.
- Top ice cream with caramel sauce. Smooth with an offset spatula. Place back in freezer while prepare the whipped cream.
- Using a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until stiff peaks form.
- Spread on top of caramel and smooth with an offset spatula. Freeze for at least 2 hours.
- When ready to serve, top with Oreo cookie crumbs, additional whipped cream, and mini cookies.
Originally published July 7, 2019.