Love and Olive Oil

Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

More ice cream. I just can’t stop. Seriously. I’m going to have to take a break soon, at the very least to use up the hoards of egg whites sitting in the freezer. At this point I’ve moved on to snack size ziplocks to store them in because I’ve filled up all the small containers we have. So anyone who’s got any delicious egg white recipes, please send them my way!

This particular ice cream, made with fresh mint from our ‘garden’, was an almost-disaster. When the custard first came off of the stove, it did not taste good. The flavor of the cooked mint was not bright and fresh like mint should be; rather, it tasted muddled and dull. Blech. I was about to throw it out, it was that bad. Of course, Taylor thought it tasted just fine, and I probably would have thrown it out if it weren’t for him. I think that boy is missing a few tastebuds or something; he doesn’t seem to taste things in the same intensity that I do. Though I guess in this situation that is a good thing?

I guess the moral here is: don’t throw it away before it’s even finished. Because once it was chilled and churned and chunks of chocolate mixed it, it tasted good. Different than your standard store-brand mint chip ice cream, for sure. If you like the pungent, almost medicinal quality of mint ice cream, you may be disappointed with the fresh mint variation. The flavor is softer, more subtle, and definitely not naturally green.

I’d be very interested in the result when different varieties of mint are used. I have 3 varieties of mint currently battling for dominance in one small pot on our balcony. Spearmint (which I think is your standard, garden variety mint), peppermint (think red and white candies), and (get ready for this) chocolate mint. Yes, chocolate mint. Which really does have a faint scent of chocolate. Seriously. Of course, I saw that at the garden store how could I NOT take it home with me? I’d love to figure out other ways of using such an unusual and delicious herb. Some sort of dessert-cocktail seems like the next logical step.

Anyway, I decided on a combination of spearmint and chocolate mint this go around. I think using peppermint would change the character of the ice cream entirely; it would give it a more Christmasy cheer than a summery savor. Maybe next time I’ll give that a try.

Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

Makes 1 quart. Recipe from Simply Recipes.

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3 cups of fresh mint leaves (not stems), rinsed, drained, packed
1 cup milk
2 cups heavy cream (divided, 1 cup and 1 cup)
2/3 cup sugar
A pinch of salt
6 egg yolks
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
6 ounces semisweet chocolate or dark chocolate, chopped fine


Put the mint leaves in a heavy saucepan with the 1 cup of milk and 1 cup of the cream. Heat until it starts to steam (do not let boil), remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 30 minutes. Reheat the mixture again until steaming, then remove from heat and let stand for 15 more minutes to steep.

Strain the cream mixture through a fine mesh seive, pressing against the mint leaves with a rubber spatula to squeeze all the liquid out of them. Return the cream mixture to the saucepan. Add sugar and salt to the mixture. Heat until just steaming again, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat.

Whisk the egg yolks in a medium sized bowl. Slowly ladle about 1/3 of the heated cream mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly so that the egg yolks are tempered by the warm mixture, but not cooked by it. Scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan with the remainder of the cream.

Return the saucepan to the stove, stirring the mixture constantly over medium heat with a wooden spoon, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of the spoon, about 10 minutes.

While the custard is cooking, prepare an ice bath. Pour the remaining 1 cup of cream into a medium size metal bowl, set in ice water (with lots of ice) inside a larger bowl. Set a mesh strainer on top of the bowls.

Pour the thickened custard through the strainer and stir into the cold cream to stop the cooking. Add vanilla, and continue to stir until fully cooled. Cover with a double layer of cling wrap (one layer pressed down to the surface of the custard, and another pulled tight over the top of the bowl), and chill overnight (or at least a few hours).

Freeze the mixture in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions until the consistency of soft-serve. Gently fold in the finely chopped chocolate. Spoon into an airtight container and freeze for at least an hour, preferably several hours, or until firm.

All images and text © / Love & Olive Oil

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  1. I know this was posted awhile ago but you should try making buttercream icing with all those egg whites. Making fresh buttercream is far superior to canned frosting.

  2. ooooooh I really want some! Beautiful photos, gorgeous recipe!!

  3. Oh Lindsay! Mint chocolate Chip Ice Cream is my favoriteee!! I have been trying to find a way on how to integrate fresh mint into ice cream and not oil/extract flavoring. I guess mine seriously lacked more mint leaves as I didn’t taste the mint AT ALL. I will definitely try again but this time I might double the mint:) and I wasn’t aware there was so many variations of mint! you definitely caught my attention when you mentioned “chocolate mint”:)

  4. Hi Lindsey,
    I just made a fresh mint chocolate chunk ice cream (not your recipe, but it looks very similar). I found your site because I was trying to figure out why the tast of the mint was so strange. You described what I think I am tasting “muddled’. To me it tastes bruised, there is definately an ‘off’ taste going on. I’m hoping that by the time it freezes, and with enough chocolate the taste will be different, but I worry that my brain will still taste it…maybe my guests wont (fingers crossed).

  5. Wow! This is really fantastic! I’m an ultra mint chocolate chip ice cream fanatic! When the summer comes, I will do this!

  6. I just made this, as in just pulled it out of the ice cream maker 5.2 seconds ago. Mint chocolate chip is my FAVORITE flavor and I have to say, i’m positive that i died and went to heaven when i tasted this. i absolutely know what i’m having for breakfast tomorrow.

  7. Thanks for your beautiful blog. I’m an ice cream fanatic and have also had to find creative ways of using egg whites. Also being gluten free, my two favorites are pavlova or French macarons – those beautiful filled cookies you see at pastry shops in Paris and dream of for years after… they are notoriously tricky to make, but I’ve found the best recipe here:
    Letting the egg whites sit out for days, or microwaving them, is key to getting enough moisture to evaporate so that the macarons get their “feet”. Otherwise, you get flat meringue like things. If they puff, you have magical bits of air and almonds (or hazelnuts) to fill with anything you like. At a recent dinner party I put out the macarons, a pot of milk chocolate ganache, and a pot of homemade apricot lavender jam so people could make their own little sandwich. It was silent for a good 15 minutes except for groans<;

  8. My daughter adores mint chocolate ice cream! This will be a fun summer activity for our family to attempt. Thanks for posting! As long as you’re on an ice cream kick…I can personally attest to the loveliness of a couple of unique combos: (1) orange evoo over vanilla ice cream – cool & refreshing!; and (2) a robust, peppery gourmet evoo over vanilla ice cream w/ a sprinkling of sea salt – divine!

  9. I made a rhubarb-orange sorbet with mint recently and was also disappointed by the mint flavor- it reminded me of mint tea instead of the fresh, bright mint flavor I wanted. Perhaps the solution is to add very finely minced mint leaves to your sorbet or ice cream base once it has cooled, instead of steeping them in the warm custard? I also toyed with the idea of using mint oil, and saving the fresh mint for garnish.

  10. Oh my gosh! This is perfect for the overflowing bundles of mint in our garden! It replanted itself from last year and now we have so much mint I have no idea what to do with it!

  11. Love ice-cream. Love making ice-cream. Never made it with mint, don’t know why, maybe thought it was too hard. But this looks really simple and fun. I think i will just have to try it out. Thanks for posting and great food blog.

  12. This looks outstanding and is exactly what I was looking for. GREG

  13. Lovely images! I’m a huge fan of the horrible neon green supermarket version so I think it’s probably time to cut my losses and transfer my ice cream love over to the more grown-up appropriate version. Unfortunately though this totally means I need to add another herb to my garden in order to do so. Local garden center here I come…

  14. love everything coming from the herb garden! i just planted a mini one this weekend. and angel food cake can be a great way to use egg whites. :)

  15. ooo I was thinking how yummy this ice cream looked and then I saw gumby’s comment about pavlova, and THEN I thought, how awesome would the two be combined together? Thanks for sharing!

  16. Yummo! LOL you should do a series with recipes that incorporate egg whites. Who wouldn’t want that in their arsenal? Love the idea of using chocolate mint; spearmint for some reason always makes me think of GUM;)

  17. I’m in australia and any left over egg whites in our household equals one thing = PAVLOVA!

    p.s. that ice cream looks delcious and i seriously want to find some of this chocolate mint in my local nursery.

  18. Egg white suggestion that is a bit nontraditional would be to crystallize flower pedals like at the end of this recipe. Seems easy enough, so I think I might try to do it myself!

  19. In the summer, growing up, my family would go out for ice cream every Friday night. I ALWAYS got a mint chocolate chip scoop in a sugar cone. Always. Made me think of this… Thanks!

  20. Was just on David Lebovitz’s website and found this post with all kinds of egg white recipes – Enjoy!

  21. Oh my goodness. You are my new favorite person for posting this ;) I must try this!

  22. Mint Chocolate Chip used to be my favorite flavor before I found Mocha/Coffee Cookie/Oreo. But maybe this will persuade me back to MCC.

    Maybe you should use those egg whites to make macarons… and then crush those macarons into ice cream. It would be like the circle of life… ice cream style.

  23. I have seen so much mint chocolate chip ice cream in the blog world lately…I really need to get going with making some now that I have an ice cream maker! Thanks for the warning about hte preliminary taste…I probably would have thrown in the towel!

  24. Chocolate mint sounds so good! My hubby hates mint so I had to restrain myself with all the different flavors. I bought what I thought was just standard mint only to discover when I got home that it was “mojito mint” and then later on I bought orange mint. I haven’t used either yet, but they look pretty in the pot with the lavender, chives, and thai basil.

    • What is it with boys and mint? Taylor’s not a huge fan either… doesn’t hate it, but if a recipe calls for it he’ll usually suggest leaving it out.

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