Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream | Just 4 Simple Ingredients

Do you want to make the creamiest ice cream ever? Everyone loves this healthy vanilla ice cream recipe. It has just 4 ingredients and is simple to make!

Do you want to make the creamiest ice cream ever? Everyone loves this healthy vanilla ice cream recipe. It has just 4 ingredients and is simple to make!

Can you believe this ice cream recipe has just 4 ingredients?

I know, right?

This super easy healthy vanilla ice cream recipe is decadent and delicious. And it is so creamy, too! 

Making your own ice cream to enjoy alongside cookies (check out these protein paleo cookies), brownies, or even on top of pumpkin pie is the best!  

To me, ice cream has summer written all over it but to be honest…I adore ice cream all year long. Especially when it’s a recipe made from clean ingredients that fit in with my healthy lifestyle.

This healthy vanilla ice cream recipe definitely fits the bill. No refined sugar? Check! Vegan? Check! Made with full fat coconut milk, this cold and creamy treat is going to be your favorite ice cream.

Let’s make it, shall we?

Overhead image of the ingredients for Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream including coconut milk, pure maple syrup and pure vanilla.

Is Vanilla Ice Cream Healthy?

This vanilla ice cream is indeed healthy. Let’s look at the full fat coconut milk.

  • Coconut milk is made from coconut flesh and water
  • It has fiber and protein
  • Coconut milk has magnesium, iron, potassium, manganese and others (all important!)
  • Use coconut milk in your coffee and in good for you smoothies

The fact that we use maple syrup as the sweetener is a bonus since we all want to avoid processed sugar. The simple ingredients list means that this healthy vanilla ice cream is clean eating, too. Hurrah!

Overhead view of the ingredients for Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream being mixed into a white bowl with a whisk.

What’s In This Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream?

Simple ingredients that are easy to find make this creamy ice cream a must-try!

Here’s all you need…

  • Full fat coconut milk
  • Regular unsweetened coconut milk or unsweetened milk of choice like almond milk
  • Pure maple syrup
  • Vanilla extract

What Is The Cleanest Ice Cream?

The cleanest ice cream will always be the one with minimal ingredients – and of course, ingredients that you can pronounce! Look for ice cream that is made with natural ingredients and sweetened with foods like cinnamon, vanilla extract or banana.

Always avoid refined sugar in the ice cream you buy and that includes things like sucralose and maltitol syrup. (Find out how to wean yourself off sugar in my post; it’s entirely possible!)

If you make your own ice cream, you’ll be eating the cleanest ice cream possible.

Overhead image of a white bowl containing the mixed ingredients for Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream, a whisk is in the bowl.

What Is The Unhealthiest Ice Cream?

Any store-bought ice cream with an ingredients list a mile long is unhealthy. Even some ice cream brands with just a few ingredients will have an item or two included that is not the best for you.

These are just a few to avoid:

  • Carrageenan
  • Cellulose gum
  • Artificial colors
  • Partially hydrogenated oils
  • Artificial colors
  • Soybean oil
Overhead view of a rectangular glass dish containing Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream; beside the dish is an ice cream scoop and two glass bowls with spoons.

Is It Okay to Eat Ice Cream Every Night?

This is almost a trick question, isn’t it? Sure, this is a healthy vanilla ice cream, but it is ice cream nonetheless! Coconut milk does contain some fat.

If you were to eat ice cream every night and skip other healthy foods, that would be a bad idea. If you indulged in ice cream every night and did not exercise, meaning you were sedentary all day, then that would not be wise.

What I’m saying is everything in moderation and take the time to do other things that are good for you like working out, drinking lots of water, filling your plate with tons of veggies, and making sure you walk whenever you get the chance. If you do that, then it is okay to enjoy ice cream now and then.

But personally, I would vary it up with a yummy shake or a chia pudding once in a while!

Side view of 3 glass bowls with spoons, one of them containing Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream; a rectangular glass dish with ice cream sits beside.

How To Make Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream

Making this sweet treat takes only 20 minutes. Then, you’ll need to leave it in your ice cream maker for about 3-4 hours.

So it’s pretty simple… 

  • Open two 13.5-oz cans of full fat coconut milk
  • Add ½ cup of regular unsweetened coconut milk or an unsweetened milk of your choice
  • Add ⅓ cup of pure maple syrup
  • Mix in 2 tsp of pure vanilla extract
  • Pour into the ice cream maker!

How To Store Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream

This recipe makes about 5 cups. Store it in an airtight container in the freezer until ready to eat. Enjoy!

Overhead close up view of a glass bowl containing Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream.

More Healthy Ice Cream Recipes

I told you I LOVE ice cream, right? I’ve got more recipes for you to try!

This post contains affiliate links for products I use regularly and highly recommend.

5 from 2 votes
Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream | Just 4 Simple Ingredients
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
4 hrs 30 mins
Total Time
4 hrs 50 mins

Do you want to make the creamiest ice cream ever? Everyone loves this healthy vanilla ice cream recipe. It has just 4 ingredients and is simple to make!

Categories: Dessert, Sweets
Difficulty: Easy
Keyword: homemade ice cream recipe, homemade vanilla ice cream, vanilla ice cream recipe
Servings: 5 cups
Calories: 90 kcal
Author: Lacey Baier of A Sweet Pea Chef
  • 2 13.5-oz cans full fat coconut milk (approx 3 1/3 cups)
  • 1/2 cup regular unsweetened coconut milk or unsweetened milk of choice
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl, and stir until mixed well.

  2. Transfer mixture to an ice cream maker. Follow according to your ice cream maker's instructions.

  3. Freeze for at least 3-4 hours prior to serving.

Without An Ice Cream Maker
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

  2. Pour into a Ziploc bag and freeze for about 3 hours.

  3. Break the frozen mixture into pieces and blend in a food processor.

  4. Put in a freezer safe container and freeze overnight (or 3-4 hours at least)

  5. Remove from the freezer and enjoy!

Nutrition Facts
Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream | Just 4 Simple Ingredients
Amount Per Serving (0.5 cup)
Calories 90 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g5%
Sodium 2mg0%
Potassium 48mg1%
Carbohydrates 15g5%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 14g16%
Protein 1g2%
Calcium 33mg3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


Lacey Baier

Hey y’all, I’m Lacey Baier and I’m so glad you’re here! I’m a healthy lifestyle influencer and the creator of this clean-eating blog and YouTube channel, A Sweet Pea Chef. My recipes have been published on Food Network, Good Morning America, FoxNews, Tastemade, Fitness Magazine, and much more. I live in Dallas, Texas with my husband and four kiddos. Let’s get started!

47 thoughts on “Healthy Vanilla Ice Cream | Just 4 Simple Ingredients

  1. I don’t understand how the nutritional value chart can be correct. Coconut milk, especially full-fat milk, has tons of fat and calories. Using an online recipe calculator I came up with 229 calories and 26% total fat/90% saturated fats. It sounds delicious, and I’m planning on making some, just not sure this is considered “healthy” in my opinion. A half-cup of regular ice cream is only 137 calories.

    I’m also confused as to why there are comments about eggs and cream?

    1. Agreed – shouldn’t the nutritional information reflect that of all the ingredients? Full fat coconut milk has, by definition, significant fat in it.

  2. Hi, I don’t see eggs listed in the ingredients but there are comments regarding pasteurized eggs. Do we need eggs for this recipe? If yes, how many? Thanks

  3. I was wondering what the comments about eggs are referring to? I didn’t notice eggs listed in the ingredients for the healthy vanilla ice cream. I want to make sure I’m not missing something before I try out the recipe. Really looking forward to it!

    1. Hi there, great question! We created a set of instructions in the recipe for making this without an ice cream machine. (It specifies a food processor but a blender should work as well). -Jen

  4. 5 stars
    I’ve never been a huge homemade ice cream fan. In the past it was always so watery and not very creamy. Decided to give it one more try and made this for Father’s Day yesterday. Wow! Seriously the best ice cream ever. It was so creamy and had so much flavor. My only complaint is I wish we had more !!

  5. thank you so much for making the vanilla ice cream. it was simple and not scary to make. You’re wonderful.
    Thanks again, and I will keep this website.. I’m so looking forward to trying new recipes for my son and I. I’m a single parent and he’s a teenager who loves food.(especially since he will try new foods)

  6. This recipe is by far the easiest and best tasting EVER! My church family loved it and the best part is it did not freeze hard over night. The leftovers were easy to scoop and even more yummy! Love, love, love, this recipe!

  7. I didn’t see an answer to “How do you know an egg has been pasteurized”. I am curious as I have never heard of pasteurized eggs. And I never use raw eggs in anything because I have had salmonella poisoning and I DO NOT recommend anyone take a chance! It’s very painful and can be fatal.

  8. Thank you for an ice cream recipe that doesn’t require cooking and bringing the ingredients back to room temp before freezing (I get why we do this, but it takes so long)! This is so easy, quick and DELICIOUS!!

    My husband and I agree, it takes us back to the old time machines we had as a kid!

    Note: I used 3 c. evaporated milk in lieu of cream & whole milk (b/c that’s what we always have on hand), turbinado sugar, and added 2 t. vodka to keep it from getting icy freezing. The result was creamy (but not too creamy), scoopable and crazy TASTY!!

    Thank you, Lacey!

      1. Hi Lacey,

        Enjoy doesn’t quite do my experience with this ice cream justice;)

        I don’t taste the vodka at all, but if one was worried probably 1 T would work just as well.

        Thanks again!

      2. As a follow up, I did try it with 1 t and the ice cream was a tad icy around the edges. With 2 t this doesn’t happen at all.

        Lacey, you’ve got me all excited about no cook ice cream recipes!

      3. Hi Lacey,

        Just wanted to share that I made your FABULOUS recipe with coconut milk (in lieu of the milk and cream) this evening and it’s delicious!

        I was nervous about messing with a very good thing, but the risk paid off:)

        Thanks again,

  9. My ice cream freezer is 4qt. Will this mixture make the four qt? or do I need do double???

    1. Hi Karen! Good question. I would imagine it would need to be doubled, but I’m not too sure, as I’ve never used that size. You could always try it and see without doubling first. I hope that helps. I’d love to know how it turns out!

  10. Hey Lacey!
    Just wanted to say my family and I Lalalove your website and recipes. We dedicate every friday to your meals and they’re absolutely delightful. 🙂
    This friday is the Chicken parmesan and garlic bread! Can’t wait.

  11. How do you know if the eggs have been pasturized?? Could you cook the eggs, sugar, and milk for a little bit to be on the safe sound. I get my eggs fresh from a farmer. Thank you, Linda

    1. Hi Linda! Very good question. (By the way, I’m very jealous of your farm-fresh eggs!) Yes, you can make sure the eggs are cooked safely by essentially making a custard before adding the mixture into the ice cream maker. Just be sure to temper the eggs (slowly add the hot milk to the eggs, bit by bit) to avoid scrambling the eggs. Let me know if you have any more questions. Good luck!

  12. Hi L,
    So glad I found your site, it’s wonderful and I love all of the great recipes. I will check out the rest of it and see what other surprises there are. Thanks for this lovely and easy ice cream recipe. -Angel

  13. Lacy, I’m stuck and I hope you can help. I desperately want to make ice cream. I live in FL for crying out loud and with temps already hitting 99*, I need me some! Problem is I cannot find Whipping Cream for the life of me. Everyone has heavy whipping cream, not just whipping OR heavy. You cannot add sugar to HWC because you end up with an odd frozen whipped cream concoction. Help! and Thanks!

    1. Hi Brandi! Yes, it’s in the high 90’s and low 100’s out here in Texas now as well so I completely understand! Well, I would have suggested you use Heavy Whipping Cream. I think I’ve even used that for this recipe before and it wasn’t a problem. I’d say go for it and see how it turns out — I’d love to know how it goes if you do.

  14. I was wondering if this recipe would work for a 4qt electric ice cream machine. I wasnt sure how many qt this recipe made. Thank, Darla

  15. Thanks Lacey!! I just made this tonight for dessert. Confession: I actually went out and purchased the KitchenAid ice cream maker attachment just to make this recipe.
    I really loved the flavor and consistancy of this recipe. I won’t ever buy ice cream in the store again. thumbs up to you and KitchenAid.

  16. I’m really looking forward to making your homemade ice cream recipe, it looks like it’s going to be just like we used to make as kids growing up in Texas. I can’t wait to show my daughter’s Brownie troop how to make homemade ice cream thanks to the Sweet Pea chef! Many great memories with you and your little one!

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