This IPA Ice Cream proves that hops aren’t just for beer

Looking for a sweet and festive pledge to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? Try the homemade IPA ice cream.

Much like fermentation, making ice cream involves a bit of science and tact—but nothing a home chef can’t handle. Think of ice cream as a rich blank canvas to highlight the robust, robust flavor of IPA-style beers.

It’s time to put your brewer’s cap on and grab your favorite Irish brew or a fizzy American IPA. Here, we explain how to make your own ice cream at home, starting with a solid foundation.

How to make homemade IPA ice cream

Making homemade ice cream may seem intimidating, but rest assured that it is much easier than it looks.

Start with a good ice cream base from a trusted recipe. “It’s really hard to mess up, as long as you start with a great establishment,” says Tyler Malik, co-founder and chief innovation officer of Salt & Straw, an Oregon-based ice cream company. Having a basic recipe keeps things organized and serves as a starting point from which to tinker with a wide variety of flavors—including the aromatic hops that define IPA-style beers.

Then it’s time to add some lively flavors.

“You can’t just pour beer into ice cream,” says Malek. “Its flavor is not concentrated enough to counteract the fat content of the ice cream. And if you try to cook some water to intensify the flavor, you distort the character of the beer you were trying to bring out in the first place.”

the solution? Dry hopping – just like a brewer does.

Dry hopping entails soaking the hops in alcohol to extract their aromas. This harnesses the complex bitterness and hop aroma that defines an IPA-style drink.

To achieve the distinct flavor profile of an IPA-style beer in ice cream form, Malek recommends steeping a blend of hops granules in vodka. before Add them to the caramel malt ice cream base. This results in a delicious IPA that you can use in this creamy dessert. Bonus: You can use the leftover syrup in your next cocktail.

So grab a bottle of your favorite fruity IPA and put the cap on your brewer. It’s time to make an IPA ice cream.

IPA ice cream

Recipe adapted from The Salt and Straw Ice Cream Cookbook By Tyler Malick and JJ Good


1/2 cup vodka, or any other high-strength alcohol

1 teaspoon of citra hop granules

3 tablespoons of light golden liquid malt extract

A quarter cup of caramel 40 liters of malt

A quarter cup of caramel 20 liters of malt

1 teaspoon Columbus granules

1 teaspoon of Falconer’s Fly Granules

1 teaspoon of chinook hop granules

3 cups ice cream, very cold* (recipe follows)

Your favorite balanced, fruity, ice-cold IPA cup

At least 1 day in advance, combine the vodka and citra hops in a small glass bowl and cover with an airtight lid. Soak for at least 24 hours but no more than 36 hours.
Pour the vodka mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a small bowl, pressing the solids gently to extract as much liquid as possible. Reserve 1 tablespoon of the liquid for this recipe. Store the rest in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
In a small saucepan, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Reduce heat to low, then add liquid malt extract, caramel 40-quart malt, caramel 20-quart and Columbus malt. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes. Then, stir in Falconer flight hops and cook for another 15 minutes. Finally, add Chinook hops and cook for 10 minutes. Remove saucepan from heat and pour mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a small heatproof bowl, gently pressing down on the solids to extract as much liquid as possible.
Fill another small mixing bowl with ice, then fill it halfway with water. Place the bowl containing the soaked liquid in the ice water and stir it to cool the liquid quickly. When cool, add 1 tablespoon of reserved vodka and store leftover IPA for one week.
Place the ice cream base, cold beer, and 1/2 cup cold IPA syrup in a bowl and whisk until combined. Pour the mixture into the ice cream maker and turn on the machine. Whisk until the mixture becomes smooth.
Transfer the whipped ice cream to freezer-friendly bowls. Cover with parchment paper, press down so the paper sticks to the ice cream and cover with a lid. Keep it in the coldest part of the freezer (farthest away from the door) until it sets, at least 6 hours. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Ice cream base


Half a cup of granulated sugar

2 tablespoons of dry milk powder

Half a teaspoon of xanthan gum

2 tablespoons of light corn syrup

1 1/2 cups full fat milk

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

Combine sugar, dry milk, and xantham gum in a small bowl and stir well.
Pour the corn syrup into a medium saucepan and add the whole milk.
Add sugar mixture to saucepan and immediately beat vigorously until smooth. Place saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring frequently and adjusting heat if necessary to prevent boiling, until sugar is completely dissolved, about 3 minutes. Remove pot from heat.
Add the cream and whisk until fully blended. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 6 hours or up to 24 hours for better texture and flavour. Flip the base back together if it came loose during rest time. Store the base in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

questions and answers

Do you need an ice cream maker to make IPA ice cream?

no! An ice cream maker is not necessary to make ice cream at home. To make IPA ice cream without an ice cream maker, freeze the ice cream base mixture, beer, and IPA syrup after whipping. After 30 minutes, manually beat the mixture with a whisk or hand mixer and place in the freezer. Repeat this process until you have a smooth rendering texture before moving on to the next step.

However, it may make your life easier. If you’re looking to make ice cream on a longer hunt, Malik encourages looking to Amazon or your local thrift store for an affordable option to get started.

Where can you buy hops?

Malik purchased the Citra, Columbus, Falconer’s Flight, and Chinook hops used in this recipe at a local brewery. If you prefer to have items shipped to your door, you can find a wide selection of hops granules on Amazon.

Posted on March 9, 2023

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