Spiced-Nut Vanilla Coconut Ice Cream


Although I’m a curmudgeon when it comes to hot weather, I’m not against all things summer. I like splashing in the pool. I love cooking on the grill and eating at a picnic table. And I like ice cream.

Do you like ice cream?

That wasn’t really a question.

Of course you like ice cream.

Which means you’ll probably like this Spiced-Nut Coconut Ice Cream: creamy, smooth, rich, not-too-sweet coconut milk ice cream, flecked with tasty bits of spicy-sweet nuts. Just one way to make the long, lazy days of summer a little sweeter.


Spiced-Nut Vanilla Coconut Ice Cream

Note: The ice cream base needs to chill overnight, so plan accordingly. You will be rewarded.

  • 1 (13.66 oz.) can coconut milk

  • 1 (14 oz.) can coconut cream

  • 2 tablespoons honey

  • pinch salt

  • 2 vanilla beans

  • 1 cup Spiced Nuts, coarsely chopped


Combine coconut milk and coconut cream in a blender and blend until combined. Pour the lusciousness into a medium saucepan; add the honey and salt. Stir to combine.


Using a sharp paring knife, split the vanilla beans and scoop the seeds into the coconut milk, then drop the pods into the pan, too. Bring the liquid to a simmer over medium-low heat, then turn off the heat and allow the vanilla beans to steep in the coconut milk until it’s cool. Pour the coconut milk into a jar and refrigerate overnight to allow the flavors to meld. This step infuses the coconut milk with a rich vanilla flavor; I highly recommend that you don’t skip the overnight flavor melding magic.


When you’re ready to churn the ice cream, remove the vanilla bean pods and transfer the coconut milk to an ice cream maker. Follow your ice cream maker’s instructions for freezing and about halfway through the process, add the spiced nuts to the ice cream. When it’s finished, devour with glee.

You Know How You Could Do That


Sweetener: We used only 2 tablespoons of honey, but if you want it a little sweeter, you can increase the amount. For flavor variation, you might also like maple syrup.


Nuts: We used Spiced Nuts because they’re so freakin’ good. Truly. The cumin-cayenne against the sweet coconut melt is mind blowing. But you could also substitute your favorite kind of plain nuts and it would still be delicious. IT’S ICE CREAM. YOU CAN’T DO IT WRONG.


Fruit: You could ditch the spiced nuts and make this with chunks of frozen peach, strawberry, raspberry, mango, or blackberry instead. Or try peaches and spiced nuts. Then… head explosion because it’s just too good. But whatever, you will have lost your mind in a delicious way.

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  • Dana says:

    What kind of coconut cream do you use?

  • Heather A. says:

    Oh, lawd! As soon as I’m done with my Whole30 I’m making this!

  • MissChris says:

    Could one skip the ice cream maker and put this into popsicle molds instead?

    • I really don’t know because I never tried it. I do know that the ice cream maker injects air into the whole shebang so it gets creamy and smooth. I’m not sure what will happen if you go directly from liquid to frozen without aerating it. The popsicles MIGHT get really hard. You’d have to ask someone who’s skilled with popsicle making.

    • Pam says:

      I’ve done popsicle molds with other recipes, and they do get a bit hard, but still delicious. (And it does help you pace yourself from eating the whole thing… 😛 )

  • Carrie says:

    OK, I am new to this world of Paleo so I apologize if I am asking an obvious question but where do you find coconut cream. I know there is coconut milk in both the dairy section (in cartons) and then in the specialty section in cans. Even though they are both called coconut milk they seem quite different and now we are throwing coconut cream into the mix. I’m a little lost 🙂
    Can you help?

    • It’s not obvious, and I’m happy to answer any questions you have about paleo, if I can. Coconut milk and coconut cream are slightly different. The coconut milk has a higher percentage of water than the cream. Coconut milk is what’s usually used for Thai curries, etc. When buying coconut milk, avoid the kind in the carton in the dairy aisle because it usually contains added ingredients. For paleo world, you want the canned kind (or aroy-d brand, which comes in a small cardboard container) and it should only include coconut, water and maybe guar gum. Anything else, skip it and look for another brand. The coconut cream is the same deal; it shouldn’t have any added ingredients. The BEST brand of both is aroy-d, but it can be hard to find in stores. It’s available on amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002I6DZ92/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B002I6DZ92&linkCode=as2&tag=roltheboo-20&linkId=DVJIQNA4ARJ4HB4U Thai Kitchen is pretty good, and Polar is OK, in a pinch. Whole Foods has several good brands without added junk.

  • yum, love the idea of using coconut milk and cream. definitely have to try this recipe out, thanks for the inspiration.

  • Alison says:

    So I tried this out this weekend and it was amazing right out of my ice cream maker…..but I put it in the freezer so we could have it later and it turned into a rock! I guess Coconut Milk freezes a lot harder than normal milk? We let it sit out and then it got kind of liquidy but still tasted lovely. Highly recommend eating right out of the ice cream maker!!

    • Jenna says:

      Try adding 1 1/2 tsp good quality, gluten free vodka to the ice cream right before you put it in the ice cream maker. This helps it remain a bit more soft serve and not turn to a rock. Mmmmmm

  • Janice says:

    How much ice cream does this make?