Chocolate Dairy-free Ice Cream


Chocolate Dairy-Free Ice Cream

This ice cream recipe comes from my Dairy-Free Ice Cream book! Click here to see the full list of recipes!


1 (13-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk
heaping ½ cup (about 10) soft, pitted Medjool dates
1 cup almond, cashew, or hemp milk
1/3 cup cocoa or raw cacao powder
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
optional thickener: 1 tablespoon gelatin completely dissolved in ¼ cup boiling water OR ½ teaspoon guar gum


  1. Put the coconut milk, and dates in the blender. Puree until smooth.
  2. Add the almond, cashew, or hemp milk, cocoa or raw cacao powder, vanilla extract, and thickener (if using). Puree until smooth.
  3. Freeze for about an hour or refrigerate until cold.
  4. Pour into the ice cream machine, per manufacturer’s instructions.
  5. Eat right away or freeze until hard for pretty scoops.
  6. If frozen solid, thaw for 10 to 20 minutes before scooping.

Tip: A shallow dish allows for more even thawing than a deep dish.

♥, Kelly coupon


  1. Melissa says

    So excited for the new cookbook… ordered and waiting for it to arrive!!! I was wondering how much ice cream the recipe produces (volume) and how you store yours (any specific containers that work well?)

  2. Krista says

    This is going to be my first ice cream attempt! So excited that we have all of these ingredients on hand!

      • Stephanie says

        I use approximately 1/3 of an avocado to thicken my ice creams. Sounds crazy, but it is an excellent thickener and doesn’t alter the taste. Thank you so much for this recipe…it is amazing!

  3. says

    Awh, thank you for sharing! I’m getting my Vitamix repaired at the moment, but will try when I get it back. Looks like you sprinkled cayenne on top in the picture? Genius :)

  4. ashley says

    what kind of milk did you use? almond cashew or hemp? can’t wait to get my ice cream maker… & this book! (:

  5. Wendy says

    Sounds delish! I don’t have an ice cream maker. What are the steps with out a machine (what function does the actual machine do?) thanks, Wendy

    • says

      An ice cream maker whips air into the ice cream, making for a less icy texture. If you use more sugar (like with dates), then the sugar can keep the texture smooth without a machine.

    • says

      It can, but i don’t recommend it. An ice cream maker whips air into the ice cream, making for a less ice texture. If you use more sugar (like with dates), then the sugar can keep the texture smooth without a machine.

  6. Dayna says

    Oh my goodness. This was absolutely fabulous. I used raw cacao and added the optional grass fed gelatin, and the milk I used (in addition to the coconut) was an almond/cashew blend that we always have on hand. Arguably the best chocolate ice cream I’ve ever had. Thanks so much for all your efforts and for sharing this today. Looking forward to ordering your ice cream book.

  7. says

    Congrats on the cookbook release! I’ve been limiting the amount of dairy I eat and that always means less ice cream, but this recipe just looks so decadent! Love how the recipe doesn’t contain any hard-to-come-by ingredients!

  8. Keren Gorman says

    Hi Kelly, is it possible to substitute the almond milk with drinking coconut milk (from a carton not the can)? Trying to keep it nut free for my husband and we don’t have hemp milk where I live. Thanks

  9. Amber says

    Hi Kelly, I love your blog and your chocolate book! I would love to try some of your ice cream recipes, but I am wondering how possible it is to adapt them for the autoimmune protocol since we can’t do nut or seed milks. Is it worth attempting them with all coconut milk? And do you have any thoughts on using homemade coconut milk rather than canned? Thanks for any advice you have!!

    • says

      You can certainly use all coconut milk. Homemade coconut milk is excellent! I choose canned for the recipe, because I know that’s what most people will use.

  10. jackie says

    I’m excited to try this chocolate ice cream recipe! I’ve already made the vanilla version. My question- where do you buy your medjool dates? My local store is $11 a pound. I’ve looked on Amazon & Azure Standard for pricing & quality dates, too. Thanks for the yummy recipes, they totally fit with my family’s eating restrictions.

  11. Julianne says

    I have this ice cream churning right this minute! I found that, after adding the cocoa, the mixture was quite bitter so I added 2 tbsp agave nectar to compensate. I bought a bag of dried dates that doesn’t say whether they’re Medjool or not. Should I have bought fresh ones instead? Could that be why the mixture wasn’t sweet enough?

  12. Vanessa says

    I want to try this recipe but was wondering what would be the difference if I didn’t add in the optional thickener. I don’t really want to buy it if I don’t have to but wondered how/if the ice cream would change if I didn’t add it in. Have you made it without a thickener?

  13. brenda says

    Made this without an ice cream maker, with the gelatin thickener, was lovely thanks, so for the people who asked if it can be done I would say yes, my family loved, I just took it out of the freezer and beat it every half hour to hour until it was ready to eat

  14. Linda says

    Hi, Kelly. I bought your book. I was a little disappointed to see that so many of the recipes call for dates, which I can’t have. I can’t have any dried fruits. Any suggestions for substitutes? Thanks!

    That being said, I am looking forward to trying the recipes that don’t require dates. I am grateful for all the wonderful recipes you share.

  15. Tessa says

    Just made this. WONDERFUL!!! I can eat dairy , and I prefer this ice cream. So easy to make. Absolutely delicious!! Thank you! :)

  16. Raquel says

    I just got in my mail your new post and the chocolate cake recipe. Thank´s a lot for sharing! it looks JUST perfect. Greetings from Spain!

  17. says

    i made the swiss almond one and it turned out great! I just made this up this morning and i can’t get it to freeze in my ice cream maker? what am i doing wrong???

  18. Rebecca says

    Hi Kelly, I made this for our July 4th festivities and it was a huge hit — my kids rated it a “10”. It is delicious and so easy to whip up. Thank you for sharing your talents with the rest of us!

  19. says

    Your book arrived last week and I got straight to work. I made your chocolate ice cream (above) and added toasted walnuts and enjoy life mega chunks. It got RAVE reviews from dairy lovers and non-desert lovers alike. I’ve struggled with finding an ice cream recipe that doesn’t crystallize. You are genius! Cheers!

    • Jessica says

      Hi Kelly! I’ve tried a number of these recipes, and while they always taste great they also freeze ice hard and don’t scoop – I end up having to chip them out. Any advice? Thanks!

      • Michelle says

        I’ve found that all homemade ice creams, regardless of ingredients, need about 10-15 minutes to thaw before scooping. Thaw time and storing in a shallow container will help.

  20. Janette says

    Thank you for working to make this lovely ice cream book. It is beautiful and inspiring! I tried the coffee and plan to make the bing cherry this week. I made cashew milk this morning and plan to try making the yummy yogurt drink this week, too. Do you recommend a specific brand of probiotic? I have Metagenics ultra flora balance. It’s a refrigerated probiotic. Will that work just as well as a non refrigerated? Thank you!

  21. says

    I just bought your book. It is beautiful. I made the chocolate ice cream yesterday. Before we froze it, it was creamy, whipped, and lovely, once we froze it, it became very grainy and the fat reconstituted. Do you have advice on how to avoid this? It is standard behaviour of coconut milk – from my experience. I did not add a thickener – would have make a difference. ?

    I am very excited about this book because until now I have been watching people enjoy ice cream and not doing much more.

    Great work.

  22. Tiffany says

    I’ve been making coconut milk ice cream for a couple years and this recipe tastes so much better than the rest!! I made the recipe as directed. It has a lovely mouth-feel, was easy to scoop, and did not crystalize. It also got rave reviews from my picky, dairy-loving husband! I told my husband to buy me the book for my next gift. I can’t wait!

  23. Erica says

    Just wanted to say as usual your recipe was amazing !!! I don’t normally care for ice cream but the texture was amazing and I kept eating it as did my girls! Thanks. Will have to pick up your book now!

    • says

      Mixing and melting the gelatin with water is done to prevent gelatin clumps from forming. You could use almond milk as long as it was heated to melt the gelatin.

  24. Ivy says

    The first time I saw your recipe for Coffee Ice Cream was in the magazine Living Without. I just acquired your book and see the same recipe with one difference, there is no mention of hemp or nut milk. Is that correct?

  25. Melissa says

    I just got the Cuisinart Ice cream maker for my birthday. Yay! It makes 2 quarts but I am wondering if I can make this recipe in it which would be a smaller batch? I am asking because I am pretty sure that you have the same machine. Hurry, I need to make some ice cream! thank you!

  26. says

    Hi Kelly, I’m looking forward to trying this recipe. After reading everyone’s comments it really sounds like it is as good as it looks.i wanted to know since I don’t have an icecream maker can I use my vitamixer? Also if I can is there anything I should do different?
    Thank you for your great information!!

  27. Julie says

    Living your stuff now that I’m fairy free! Oops – dairy free! I’m going to make your chocolate ice cream tonight and I have a gelatin question for you. You use Great Lakes orange label gelatin with hot water in your recipe. I only have the Great Lakes green label gelatin (that I usually use in smoothies). Should I treat it the same and use it? Thanks! You rock!

    Julie Ralston

  28. Monique says

    Okay, I’m attempting to make ice cream for the first time ever (so excited!) from your book that I recently bought, and I would like to know if I use the whole can (13.5 oz.) of coconut milk or just the cream?

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