No ice cream machine? No problem! Pull out your hand mixer, because today I have for you a no-churn ricotta ice cream which will take you only 10 minutes to put together and tastes like a frozen cannoli in a bowl. Yes, you have to wait a few hours for it to freeze, but patience is a virtue. Right?
It’s definitely a virtue when the result is creamy, cinnamon-spiced ricotta ice cream! For this I’m willing to learn to be patient.
And, honestly, half of cooking is being patient. Wait for ice cream to freeze or wait for the meat to marinate or wait for sauce to simmer. There’s a lot of waiting! I will admit that waiting is not my best thing. However, I’m also easily distracted by shiny things (and these days busy with my business) so I quickly forget I’m waiting and before I know it, I have beautiful, chilled ice cream waiting for my scoop.
And it’s not like you can just eat canister-frozen ice cream right away either! It is cold, but not quite cold enough to scoop into a bowl. So you’re going to be waiting for ice cream no matter what. Might as well go with the 10 minute recipe, which is also completely easy. 🙂
Many years ago I bought one of those frozen canister ice cream makers. Over the years I’ve made any number of ice creams and sorbets and it has done me good service. But it’s a little bit of a pain isn’t it?
Finding space in the freezer. Making sure it stays clean and things don’t get piled on top of it. And then forgetting to put it in the freezer so you’re out of luck anyway until tomorrow.
While I’m sure I’ll use it again for frozen treats (especially since I do love a custard-based ice cream), I am sold on the no-churn idea!
Basically, all you have to do is mix together the ricotta and some sweetened condensed milk, then beat in a couple of cups of heavy cream until it’s thick and fluffy. Beating the heavy cream introduces lots of little air pockets which keeps the ice crystals small while stopping the ice cream from forming into one solid mass. Ingenious!
Though I should note that it does get pretty darn hard once it’s been in the freezer for a night! However, a bit of time on the counter or in the fridge softens it up nicely and it becomes easy to scoop out again. And it’s even tasty after going through the thaw/freeze cycle a few times.
I’m honestly not sure how it lasted long enough to go though the cycle a few times, since it’s SO GOOD, but we were also being good keeping treats as treats. Meaning we didn’t eat it all in one day, even if we wanted to.
Now I have a great (and easy) Ricotta Cannoli Dip and a great (and easy) cannoli ricotta ice cream. What other cannoli inspired desserts should I make? Cookies? Cake? Ooooh…cheesecake? These all sound excellent, but right now I’m going to have another scoop of ricotta ice cream and top it with chocolate and pistachios. Yum!
– Happy Ice Cream Making, Annemarie
No Churn Cannoli Ricotta Ice Cream
- 1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
- 16 oz whole milk ricotta, preferably without stabilizers
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- pinch kosher salt
- 4 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
- 4 oz pistachios, toasted and finely chopped
- In a large bowl, whisk together the condensed milk and ricotta until smooth. Add the heavy cream, vanilla, cinnamon, and a pinch of kosher salt. Using an electric mixer, beat the mixture until thickened and forms soft peaks. Start the mixer on medium for 30 seconds, then increase to high for 5 minutes.
- Taste the ice cream and add more salt or cinnamon as needed. Scoop the ice cream into your freezer container and let set for 4-5 hours. At this point it will be easy to scoop out. If you leave the ice cream in the freezer for several hours or longer, you will need to let the ice cream sit out on the counter or in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes to soften again.
- To serve, scoop out the ice cream and top with chopped chocolate and toasted pistachios. Enjoy!
- To toast the pistachios, put them in a 350F oven for 3-4 minutes.
- For a different flavor combination, top with Peppered Fresh Strawberry Sauce.
- Don't worry if the cream mixture doesn't seem to want to whip at first! It will. It just needs some time to come to terms with the whole process.
- If the house is cool, I'll put the ice cream out on the counter since it won't be hot enough to melt it too quickly. However, on a warm or hot day, put it in the fridge about 30 minutes before you want to eat some and it'll be nicely softened.