Desserts

How to Make Homemade Ice Cream Cake

Looking for the perfect summer dessert? Here’s how to whip up an easy Oreo cookie ice cream cake.

By Amy Traverso

Jul 19 2018

ice-cream-cake

This cookies-and-cream cake combines two kinds of ice cream, crushed Oreos, hot fudge, and whipped cream.

Photo Credit : Amy Traverso
Making a homemade ice cream cake is incredibly simple and needn’t require any cooking at all — but you do need to plan ahead and make room in your freezer. While it’s an all-day process, no single step requires much time at all.
This cookies-and-cream cake combines two kinds of ice cream, crushed Oreos, hot fudge, and whipped cream.
This cookies-and-cream cake combines two kinds of ice cream, crushed Oreos, hot fudge, and whipped cream.
Photo Credit : Amy Traverso
The best thing about homemade ice cream cake is that you can use any combination of ice cream flavors, cookie “crunch” layers, and toppings. In addition to the one I’m sharing here, you could try a fruity ice cream cake made with strawberry ice cream, tart yogurt, and crushed vanilla wafers, or an “creamsicle” ice cream cake made with orange sherbet, vanilla ice cream, and crushed shortbread cookies. I like to build my ice cream cakes in a 9-inch springform pan, which makes them easy to assemble and, more important, to remove. The trick to assembling an ice cream cake is to begin with softened ice cream (it should be spreadable but not yet liquid) and to allow plenty of time (at least 2 hours) to freeze each layer before moving on to the next. For best results, start the cake the day before, then let it freeze overnight before serving.

Cookies-and-Cream Ice Cream Cake

Total Time: At least 11 hours, including freezing time Yield: 12 servings Note: You can use store-bought hot fudge sauce, but our hot fudge recipe takes just a few minutes to prepare and tastes terrific.

Ingredients

  • Cooking spray for the pan
  • 1 quart chocolate ice cream, softened
  • 15 Oreo-style sandwich cookies, crushed into crumbs
  • 1½ quarts cookies-and-cream ice cream, softened
  • 1¼ cups hot fudge sauce
  • 1½ cups heavy cream
  • Garnish: 6 sandwich cookies, halved

Instructions

Spray a 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray. Using a spatula or rice paddle (our preferred tool), spread the chocolate ice cream in an even layer in the bottom of the pan. Dip a small offset spatula in hot water and use it to smooth the surface.
The ice cream should be soft and spreadable, but not melted.
The ice cream should be soft and spreadable, but not melted.
Photo Credit : Amy Traverso
Sprinkle the chocolate ice cream with the cookie crumbles and gently press them into the ice cream.
The middle layer: crushed Oreos
The middle ice cream cake layer: crushed cookies.
Photo Credit : Amy Traverso
Cover the cake with plastic wrap and set it on a rimmed baking sheet. Transfer it to your freezer and freeze until firm, 2 hours. When the bottom layers are firm, lay the cookies-and-cream ice cream over the cake and spread it out as you did with the chocolate, but make a very shallow well in the center of this layer for the hot fudge. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until firm, 2 hours more.
The final ice cream layer.
The final ice cream layer. Notice how the ice cream forms a slight rim around the sides.
Photo Credit : Amy Traverso
Warm the hot fudge sauce until it is spreadable, but not hot. Pour it into the well of the top layer.
No need to form a perfect circle here: The whipped cream will cover it up.
No need to form a perfect circle here: The whipped cream will cover it up.
Photo Credit : Amy Traverso
Return cake to the freezer, uncovered, until the fudge is firm, about 30 minutes. Whip the cream to medium peaks and spread it over the cake in pretty swirls. Freeze, uncovered, until the entire cake is firm, at least 6 hours and up to 24 hours. To unmold the cake, wet a clean dishcloth with hot water, then rub it around the sides of the springform pan, removing any frost and slightly warming the metal. Repeat this process once more. Gently release the sides of the pan, making sure the cake doesn’t stick (if it is sticking, run a thin knife around the cake between the pan and the sides). Just before serving, press the halved cookies into the cream topping around the sides of the cake. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving. Have you ever made a homemade ice cream cake?