[Four-Ingredient & No-Churn] Coffee Ice Cream

So twenty-two is a touch tougher than advertised.

Twenty-two involves dealing with things like broken dishwashers and broken driver’s side windows. Twenty-two involves broken leases and broken hearts, and a whole lot of wondering if every employer’s “reply” button across the nation is broken too.

Twenty-two involves learning how to become your own cheerleader, and then figuring out what to do when your pompoms are lying limply by your sides.

Twenty-two involves way too much feeling, if you want my personal opinion.

I try not to let myself stray into the part of my brain that my mom would deem “not such a great neighborhood” too often. I can’t help but feel really vulnerable knowing that Anxiety, Insecurity, Uncertainty, Nostalgia, and Impatience [and any other number of potential attackers] could sneak up on me at any time. It’s also really hard not to take a wrong turn and get lost in there. PANIC!

Twenty-two gives me the disconcerting sensation of being too young and too old. Twenty-two also makes me feel mostly broke.

With that being said, I’m definitely, definitely not in the market for this fully automatic ice cream and gelato maker. The price tag isn’t the only deal breaker. I sort of have a policy against single-use gadgets that eat up kitchen space…even though this particular appliance’s sole function would be amazing.

So up until I decide to treat myself to a belated birthday gift, and for as long as I keep having these discouraging days…I’ll be dipping my spoon into creamy mounds of homemade no-churn coffee ice cream. And this is not a hardship.


Even if you don’t have any feelings to eat, you should give this recipe a whirl. The word “success” doesn’t cover it, not even with the word “raging” added out front. I’m sitting here licking my spoon wondering if this actually is homemade, or if someone snuck out to Mainely Custard while I wasn’t looking.

My mom clipped the recipe from The Wall Street Journal a few weeks ago, and we finally got around to making it today. I’m not quite sure why it took us so long – it took less than ten minutes of hands-on time to make and it only called for four ingredients!

Two of those ingredients have the word “espresso” in them: instant espresso powder and espresso liqueur.

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I can’t describe how lovely these two things smell once they’ve been mixed into sweetened condensed milk. That doesn’t sound nearly as appetizing as it should…I wish I had a scratch-and-sniff for you, but WordPress isn’t quite there yet. Don’t be put off by the sweetened condensed milk…it flows out of its can in silky layers and that makes it less questionable.

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I watched my mom whisk the heavy cream into soft peaks for a few minutes before we gave up and let the Kitchen Aid finish the job. You can absolutely do all the whisking by hand, but we’d just gotten back from the gym and were feeling a little lazy.

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Then we folded the cream into the instant espresso powder + espresso liqueur + sweetened condensed milk mixture and fished around for a container just big enough to hold a pint.

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Finally we stuck it in the freezer, and proceeded to spend the entire six-hour freezing window talking about all of the good parts about being twenty-two. If you ask me, one of the major advantages is the ability to eat ice cream for dinner. There is, also, if you’re lucky, the chance to talk to your mom like you would a friend.

Click here for the recipe.

Cook’s note: We used fat-free sweetened condensed milk, and there was no lack in creaminess whatsoever. 


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