blueberry and brie ice cream


I love nothing more than homemade ice cream, but I’ll be honest — the idea of churning out batches kind of gives me a headache. It’s not that it’s that difficult, but it’s added effort, and sometimes I just don’t have it in me to go through the additional steps of freezing our ice cream maker insert (we have this one), making a custard, and churning it out. Plus, I have this irrational fear that if I get my kids accustomed to homemade ice cream, they might come to expect it, which then means that I’ll be adding “make weekly ice cream batch” to my growing list of chores. Ain’t no fool got time for that nonsense.

That’s why I was especially curious when a new cookbook by Leslie Bilderback, No-Churn Ice Cream: Over 100 Simply Delicious No-Machine Frozen Treats landed on my doorstep. Could ice cream truly be made without the laborious churning required? I was skeptical, mainly because I thought that the churning was, you know, kind of an essential part of the ice cream. Without it, all you’re left with is a popsicle.

I’m happy to report that, after a couple of months of trying and re-trying (and maybe standing over a batch obsessively spooning said no-churn ice cream), no-churn ice cream is the real deal. It’s not just a close substitute for real no-churn ice cream (like sherbet — pbbbth). The recipes I tried in this cookbook produced creamy, rich ice creams bursting with summer flavor. My favorite combinations were blueberry and blue brie ice cream and chocolate cardamom, and today I’m sharing both recipes with you in addition to giving you a chance to win your own free copy of No-Churn Ice Cream!

no churn ice cream

The secret of no-churn ice cream involves the use of two ingredients: hand-whipped heavy cream and sweetened condensed milk.  The combination of these two ingredients makes a “custard” base similar to the kind used in regular churned ice cream. I thought the texture and flavor of no-churn ice cream couldn’t possibly come close to that of the real deal and was surprised to find it shockingly similar. As it turns out, ice cream doesn’t have to be churned. Who knew?!

Once you have the basic idea for the ice cream “base” down, adding different flavors is a breeze. Remember the Castello Saga Blue Brie cheese I wrote about last week? Well, I put that cheese in the Summer Berry Ice Cream from page 40 of No-Churn Ice CreamI know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that I’m straight crazy, but I promise I’m not. The cookbook provides helpful variations on almost every one of its recipes, and one of the recommended variations is blueberry and blue cheese. I, too, questioned the sanity of blue cheese in ice cream, so I thought I’d try it to see whether or not Ms. Bilderback was selling something totally insane.


As it turns out, blueberry and Saga blue brie go together like peanut butter and jelly. They actually make sense. The Saga blue brie is a wonderfully creamy addition to the natural jammy sweetness of blueberries. The recipe also helpfully suggested increasing the acidity of the ice cream by adding additional lemon juice, and I found that the lemon juice really brought a nice, tart punch to the earthy, fruity flavor in the blue brie ice cream. castello-bluesday-tuesday-9

chocolate ice cream-5225

If you can’t wrap your head around blue cheese and ice cream, then you absolutely must try the chocolate cardamom no-churn ice cream. The warm accent of cardamom calls to mind Christmas in July. It feels sort of like eating a cold scoop of hot chocolate and thick woolen sweaters. No, really. According to Bilderback, the combination of chocolate and cardamom helped her win $10,000 on the now-canceled Food Network show “Sweet Genius.” With a ringing endorsement like that, I just knew I had to try it.

chocolate ice cream-5187

The chocolate cardamom ice cream scooped even easier and creamier than the Castello Saga blue brie and blueberry version I made. It scooped just like regular churned ice cream and held its shape. I served mine along with Free for All Kitchen Gluten-Free Double Chocolate Brownie Thins for extra chocolate-y crunch. The kids loved scooping up bits of drippy chocolatey ice cream with their brownie thins.

Truth be told, I loved doing it, too.

Giveaway rules: Giveaway contest runs until 12:00am on September 10, 2015. Winner must be U.S. based and must e-mail within 24 hours of being selected with their full legal name and U.S. mailing address.  Cookbook will ship directly from the publisher. Grits & Chopsticks is not liable for giveaway prizes not received or otherwise forfeited.

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blueberry and Castello Saga blue brie no-churn ice cream

Time6 hrs 45 mins
Servings1 quart
This easy no-churn ice cream is a contrast in flavors, with earthy notes from the blue cheese and the tart sweetness of freshly-picked summer berries (adapted from No-Churn Ice Cream by Leslie Bilderback)


  • 3 cups blueberries
  • 1/4 cup water
  • finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 13- ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract (I use Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Extract for maximum vanilla impact)
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 3 tbsps Castello Saga blue brie cheese


  • Combine the berries, water, zest and juice in a small saucepan over medium heat. cook, stirring occasionally, until the berries break down and release their juices. Continue to cook until the mixture becomes jam-like, then mix in blue brie and let it melt into the mixture. Taste and add salt, if necessary. Remove the jam from heat and let it cool completely.
  • Puree the cooled jam by passing it through a fine mesh strainer or by running it through a food processor.
  • In a large bowl, combine the cooled blueberry jam, sweetened condensed milk, milk and vanilla and mix thoroughly.
  • In a separate bowl, whip the heavy cream until soft peaks form, then fold the cream gently into the berry mixture. Pour the mixture slowly into a shallow, freezeable container and spread evenly.
  • Cover the container with plastic wrap pressed directly on the surface of the ice cream, and freeze for 6 hours or more.
  • Scoop and serve with additional clumps of blue brie and fresh blueberries.

chocolate cardamom ice cream

Time6 hrs 45 mins
CuisineAmerican, Asian
Servings1 quart
This wintry combination of spiced cardamom and chocolate is rich and warm (adapted from No-Churn Ice Cream by Leslie Bilderback)


  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tbsps fresh cardamom pods (crushed, or 1 tbsp ground cardamom)
  • 1 tablespoon Nielsen-Massey pure vanilla extract (you can purchase it here)
  • 1 13- ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate (roughly chopped)


  • Combine the milk, cardamom, and vanilla in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil. When it comes to a boil, add chocolate and remove it from heat and set aside to cool completely for the flavors to blend.
  • In a large bowl, combine the chocolate cardamom milk, sweetened condensed milk, lemon juice and salt.
  • Whip heavy cream until it reaches soft peak form, and fold the cream gently into the cardamom mixture before pouring it gently into a shallow, freezable container. Cover the freezable container with plastic wrap pressed directly onto the surface of the ice cream, then freeze for 6 hours or more.
  • Scoop and serve with chocolate cookies, whipped cream or chopped pecans.
Chocolate Cardamom No-Churn Ice Cream is delicious, easy to make and a wintry cool combination
Castello Saga blue brie cheese and blueberry no-churn ice cream is easy to make and a surprisingly delicious combination of flavors

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Conversations 6 comments

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kellyjo walterssays:

deffo coconut, but if I can’t find that mint choc chip .. yum

Susan Christysays:

Chocolate is my favorite! If there are mix-in’s like nuts, that’s even better!

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About me

I’m Ann, a mom / wife / lawyer / certified culinary enthusiast. I share recipes, travel guides and home life tips while living overseas. Currently based in São Paulo, Brazil.

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