Coffee Coconut Ice Cream

Coffee Coconut Ice Cream | Minimalist Baker

So the no-dairy thing is going OK. I’m feeling better each time I opt for dairy-free alternatives, and I’m actually starting to crave my swig of almond milk in the mornings after my obligatory almond butter, banana toast.

I still cannot believe I haven’t had ice cream since December 2012. This is unheard of. But thankfully with options like cinnamon toast ice cream and now this coffee variety, my sanity is still intact, I haven’t strangled anyone, and my sweet tooth is somehow satisfied. Thank the Lerrrd.

Coffee Coconut Ice Cream!This recipe is incredibly simple to throw together, requiring just four ingredients and very little hands-on prep time. I snagged my friend’s ice cream maker again, but  it’s not necessary (though it makes it oh so creamy and fluffy). I’ve shared a few tips below if you’re sans-ice cream maker.

Vegan Coffee Ice Cream

The texture of this ice cream is so creamy, the vanilla adds a lovely cappuccino flavor, the bold coffee is offset by the sweetness of the coconut milk, and it’s only slightly sweet thanks to a reduced amount of raw sugar. You can, of course, add more sugar if you like, but I prefer my coffee ice cream like I prefer my coffee – as close to black as possible. Modify as you see fit.

Coffee Coconut Ice Cream

I almost added chocolate chunks or a fudge swirl to this recipe, but I figured I’d be a purist with this first coffee test batch. Watch out, though. More adventurous concoctions are sure to come soon, especially as the weather warms up.

Coffee Coconut Ice Cream | via minimalistbaker

4.3 from 15 reviews
Coffee Coconut Ice Cream
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Creamy coffee ice cream made with coconut milk, pure vanilla extract, raw sugar and bold coffee.
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Vegan
Serves: 6
  • 2 13.5 ounce cans of quality full-fat coconut milk (roughly 3 1/2 cups)
  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup raw sugar, depending on preferred sweetness (I used 1/2 cup)
  • 3/4 cup strong brewed coffee
  • 1.5 tsp pure vanilla extract
  1. Combine coconut milk, coffee and raw sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat and whisk until well combined - about 5 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat and whisk in vanilla. Transfer to a bowl to let cool completely in the fridge - at least 6 hours, overnight being preferable.
  3. Transfer to ice cream maker and prepare according to manufacturer instructions. Once done either eat immediately or transfer to a freezer-safe container and let harden for several hours. Should keep for 1 week in the freezer. Let stand for 15 minutes at room temperature before serving.
Though it won't yield as desirable of results, if you don't have an ice cream maker simply let the mixture cool after cooking, then transfer to a large, freezer safe container and place in the freezer. Every hour remove from the freezer and whisk vigorously to incorporate air - this will make the ice cream less dense/more fluffy, creamy. Repeat until desired consistency is achieved.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: ~ 1 cup Calories: 361 Fat: 39 g Saturated fat: 27 g Carbohydrates: 23 g Sugar: 21 g Sodium: 20 mg Fiber: 3 g Protein: 3 g

prep time does not reflect freezing/cooling time

danaHi, I'm Dana! I am a food stylist, photographer, and author of the Food Photography School and the 31 Meals Cookbook.

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Talk About It

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  1. says

    Oh my goodness! I can’t wait to try this! I have been dairy-free since December 2011, and my lucky with dairy-free recipes haven’t been so wonderful… let’s just say solid as a rock was more literal than figurative. Thanks Dana!

  2. Julia says

    oh my goodness!!!! 3 of my favourite things.. coffee, coconut & ice cream. as SOON as my cleanse is over, i will be making this!! thanks:)

  3. says

    I never thought I’d say this when it’s so cold outside, but–I need an ice cream maker!! This combination sounds perfect. And I think the addition of chocolate chunks next time would be so good!

  4. Joan Purcell says

    I do not drink coffee, so wonder what could be substituted for that. Do you think pineapple juice would work to make piña colada ice cream? I love your recipes!

  5. Tricia C says

    I just stuck the unfinished product in my fridge, but the little taste I snuck was amazing! I also made a discovery while trying to find something to replace my usual creamer and experimentally dropped a spoonful of the mix into the coffee. I can definitely see doing something with fat-free coconut milk as a coffee creamer in the future. Thanks for this recipe!

    • Dana says

      I love that you named yourself “that one lady” in this comment. This, is why I love you. Send me chocolate, kthanksbye!

  6. Agus says

    Hi! It’s my first stop here.
    Have you tried home-made banana ice-cream? It’s the easiest dairy-free and completly vegan ice-cream of all!
    You only need a few bananas (with no brown or green on the outside). You chop them and put them in the freezer.
    Once the chunks are frozen, you just blend them.
    You’ll get a creamy, healthy banana ice-cream that everyone will love.
    You can top it with nuts and chocolate… delicious!!!

  7. Amy B says

    Sounds sooo delish! Which brand of coconut milk do you use? I have tried a few but the milk always seems to taste like… the can. ?

    • Dana says

      Amy, good question. I’ve tried generic (Kroger) brands and didn’t like them. So now I either go for an organic variety (which is usually more expensive) or the Thai Kitchen (?) full fat brand. It’s very creamy, contains only the necessary ingredients, and doesn’t taste like can (in my opinion). Hope that helps!

  8. Lauren Woolsey says

    When you say ‘coconut milk,’ are you referring to canned Asian style coconut milk, or the cartons of coconut milk more often used as a dairy substitute?

  9. says

    Umm ice cream that isn’t made of fruit and doesn’t require an ice cream maker?

    Let me profess my love for you right here and now.

    That is all. :)

  10. Christine says

    This looks scrumptious! My favorite coffee is Barnie’s White Christmas, which is a coconut coffee. So I think this recipe is genius, pure genius!

  11. says

    I have an ice cream maker that requires no ice or salt. It makes a quart. so handy. will be making this in that, so hoping it works. vivian

  12. Tiffany says

    I saw this recipe last week and it looked so wonderful I was asking around to find an ice cream maker I could borrow to make it, and someone graciously gave us a new one! I made this today and i’m IN LOVE!!! It’s so creamy and decadent, and the flavors are so simple and wonderful. Needless to say I will be making this often.

    Has anyone tried to make this with lite coconut milk to cut out some of the fat?

    • Dana says

      Tiffany, you can try to make it with light but it will turn out more icey. But if you’re OK with sacrificing some of the creaminess, I say go ahead!

  13. Niki says

    I missed coffee ice cream so much after attempting Veganism, and I’m hoping this keeps me on track. Just popped it in the refrigerator, but after trying the liquid form I just know it’ll be fantastic. I replaced the vanilla with cacao powder, and the flavor is still amazing. Thank you!

  14. Caitlin says

    This looks amazing- planning to make it this weekend! Do you refrigerate overnight to get the mixture to thicken? If so, could I just add a bit of xantham gum?

    • Dana says

      You actually refrigerate it so it freezes faster and more evenly – so it’s more of a texture thing. Even if you add xanthan gum for thickness, I would still recommend letting it chill for at least 4 hours before churning. Hope that helps!

  15. Jin Ah says

    Easy and delicious. My results came out grainy. I’m guessing its from the layer of fat that collected at the surface while cooling. I used thai coconut cream. I wanted full fat. The guests at my dinner party who I made this for raved. Thanks for the recipe!

  16. Tameika says

    I have a question, I do not do coffee can I omit the coffee and just have coconut ice cream or will the calculations be completely off?

  17. Jade says

    I’m wondering what the reasoning is for the 6-hour cool down time. I didn’t read the recipe through, and was hoping to make it right away…. my bad…

    • Jade says

      Well, I made this recipe. And after 4 hours in the ice cream machine I decided it was far too loud and I was turning it off as it wasn’t really becoming ice cream. I’m disappointed to report that after puttin g it in the freezer to solidify it just became a giant coffee ice cube. So I boiled it down and added gelatin to see if I could make more of a gelato type of product. Still an ice block.
      None of our coconut milk here says full fat or otherwise, it just says coconut milk. I’m assuming this one was too much water, since it froze the way it did. I want to salvage what I made, since any parts I can manage to chip out of the block it now is are absolutely delicious. The only other way I can think to salvage it is to melt it down and freeze it again in ice cube and Popsicle molds. Any suggestions?

      • Dana Shultz says

        Hmm, it’s probably because it’s not full fat coconut milk. Next time, do you have access to just coconut cream? That’s the full fat cream of the coconut milk. I don’t know if this is salvageable or not! Sorry you had such trouble but the issue definitely seems to be the coconut milk fat content.

  18. Seth says

    I’ve been trying to find dairy-free soya-free coffee ice-cream here in the UK and have had no such luck, so I’ve been looking around to find a vegan recipe to make at home without a ice-cream maker. So thank you for this, as it seems extremely simple and not time consuming.

    Just one question though: I’m allergic to coconut (which is quite annoying when vegan and trying to avoid soya as much as possible), so I was wondering if I could substitute almond milk to it? Or would almond/oat cooking cream be better (as I saw the problem of low fat coconut milk posed)?

    • Dana Shultz says

      Seth, almond milk on its own won’t create a creamy texture like coconut milk, so you need something else. I would recommend trying a cashew base. Use this recipe as a starting point, then sub almond milk for the coconut milk, and olive oil for the coconut oil. Hope that helps!

  19. says

    Just made this with Trader Joe’s Coconut Cream, and have my fingers crossed that it will turn out nice and creamy! Thanks for the recipe, I’ll let you know how it works out with cream instead of milk!

      • says

        The taste turned out delicious, but since I didn’t have an ice cream machine handy it did turn out a little more on the icy side. Next time I will steal my moms ice cream machine and hopefully the consistency will turn out better. LOVE that this is dairy free and so easy to make though!

  20. Michi says

    Trying this tonight! I’ve been working in Port-au-Prince for the past year and JUST discovered an ice cream machine stowed away in our apartment (…thank you random previous resident). Can’t wait to try this with Haitian coffee, sugar, coconut milk, and vanilla (all locally produced!).

      • says

        It was PERFECT. You are an ice cream genius. I added a tablespoon of cocao powder and it was very subtle and nice.

        Your recipies and this ice cream maker are game changers. Finally some sweet relief from the heat!

  21. says

    You dont use any heavy cream? and did you use whole coffee bean? (my opinion) it’s gonna be more exciting if you use lil bit coffee powder to make the color of ice cream more “coffee” like this.

  22. says

    hey, very heavy and full of fat
    can you bring some recipes with low fat?
    and please write an answer for those of asking you regarding this recipe.
    thank you

  23. Breanne says

    Is there a substantial difference between using full-fat coconut milk from a can versus from a carton?

  24. Stephen says

    I tried your recipe, but I used honey as a substitute for less raw sugar – it worked well.
    To make it slightly more creamy, if the coconut milk is too diluted, add 1/2 cup of heavy cream.

    This recipe got me thinking…. perhaps, if we use coconut juice (with bits of young coconut flesh) with bit of lemon juice, we can create coconut sherbet?

  25. Emma says

    I’m dying to try this out as I’m allergic to dairy. However, I’m also allergic to aluminium so that rules out cans of coconut for me. Is it possible to make it using coconut milk from a carton?

    • Dana Shultz says

      I think it would actually be better to buy raw coconuts and scrape out the meat and then add a little coconut beverage from the carton and a little coconut oil. Hopefully the combination of these will make it creamy enough. Hope that helps!

  26. Raquel says

    Would you be able to eliminate a step by dissolving the sugar in the coffee, cooling the coffee and then whisking all the ingredients?

  27. juliette says

    Since pure fat coconut milk has a lot of saturated fat, I substituted half of coconut milk measurement with creamy almond milk. And it turned out creamy and delicious. Here’s my “modified” ingredients.

    1 13.5 ounce cans of quality full-fat coconut milk (roughly 3 1/2 cups)
    1 13.5 creamy almond milk
    1/2 – 3/4 cup raw sugar, depending on preferred sweetness (I used 1/2 cup)
    3/4 cup strong brewed coffee or 1/2 cup Rum
    1.5 tsp pure vanilla extract

    • Hannah says

      Your experiment is right in line with my recent thinking to lighten the end results by substituting half the full-fat coconut milk with another milk variety. Thus far I’ve tried half full-fat coconut milk and half light, though I’m hopeful pairing full-fat coconut milk with an almond milk would reduce the coconut’s flavor dominance. What do you mean by “creamy” almond milk?

  28. Ann says

    That looks really good, I’ve been making a chocolate mousse out of 1 can coconut milk, 7 oz 70% dark chocolate (melt together, whisk, refrigerate), thinking I would really like to throw that in the ice cream maker. Didn’t even think about ice cream, so looking forward to trying it with coconut milk now :)

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  29. Jordan says

    Hey I would love to make this! Can you substitute the sugar for dates??? Dates are a natural sweetener to a lot of the nut milks I make.

  30. Jessica says

    This was my first go using my brand new ice cream maker. Went smoothly, so easy! I added 1/4 tspn xanthan gum because, well, i heard that was a good thing to do. I would call this ice cream “Coffee with cream & sugar” because it’s pretty light on the coffee flavor. Next time I think I’ll add ground coffee beans to try and get even more coffee flavor, but I take my coffee black… so I’m sure this is the perfect for others.

    Thanks for the recipe. I’ll be making that bourbon caramel ice cream here soon!

  31. Cindy says

    Hoping for some help. We made half a recipe to try it. It was more like a coffee slushy, although the ice cream maker (cuisinart) is now frozen solid with the remnants that we can’t scrape out. Not an ice cream texture really. We did change the proportions though. We tasted it with half of everything and my husband thought it tasted too much like coconut (and he likes coconut). So he added more coffee to it, probably twice what it should have been, maybe even more. Would that extra liquid have created a very “off” texture? He does think the recipe has promise, so hoping for some guidance. We also found it a tiny bit grainy, but maybe he didn’t let our sugar dissolve enough? We did use full-fat coconut milk, Thai brand.

    • H Bondar says

      I had exactly the same outcome with my first batch — for the same reason — too much coffee (which really means too much water). I am the husband, I thought it tasted too much like coconut, so I added more coffee, and it turned into a slushy. Next batch I made with the exact proportions of ingredients called for in the recipe (actually, I didn’t do any math –I just used the exact amounts in the recipe and made two batches of ice cream) but this time I used cold-brewed coffee, which is about twice as concentrated as regular coffee, so I got more of the coffee flavor into the ice cream with the same amount of coffee liquid. Here’s how to make the cold-brewed coffee (easy): put 1/4 cup of coarse ground coffee and 1 cup of water in a glass bowl, stir, cover and refrigerate for 12-14 hours. Next day, pour the stuff through a strainer into another bowl. Now you have a cup of twice-as-strong coffee. Use it in your ice cream recipe. :)

  32. says

    I am also hoping for help. I tried this 3 times but still ended with separation. Chilled it all as you said and whipped it. First time the coconut ‘fat’ solidifed separately in the fridge, rock hard- thawed it and tried it again, whipping away but again once it was in the ice cream maker after 20 mins it separated again. 3rd attempt I thawed and whipped and poured it slightly less chilled. I poured slow and whipped and poured and whipped. Same result tho’ after 30 mins. The mic=x is sitting on my bench, smells delicious but not ice cream. I’d love some suggestions please.

  33. Katsy says

    This is amazing. So easy to make and tastes very good. I made it with hot chocolate instead of coffee. one of my new fav summer snacks.

    • says

      Hello, I wonder if perhaps you could help me then since it went so easy for you. My attempts are described above and for the life of me I can’t figure what is wrong. Its my first attempt EVER to make ice cream and I’d like to get it right :)

      • krystal says

        I steeped coffee beans in my coconut/sugar mixture instead of adding coffee (less water = less crystals = better texture, in my experience). That is the technique you’ll find with Jeni’s Ice Cream recipes.

        I also added homemade vanilla extract (I make mine with bourbon) and the alcohol keeps it from freezing too solidly – saw that in a frozen yogurt recipe (I think there it was just a tbsp of vodka).

        I used full fat coconut milk (Thai Kitchen brand) and brown sugar and heated it just enough to be warm to the touch and dissolve the sugar. It may be the initial mixture was heated too much???

  34. Hanna says

    This looks so great, I can’t wait to try it! Maybe this is a silly question but is it possible to use maple syrup or honey in place of the raw sugar?

  35. krystal says

    I made this over the weekend and it is DELICIOUS. Instead of adding coffee to the mix, I steeped coffee beans in the warm coconut milk. I also used brown sugar and added cinnamon. (Why not combine my two favorite ice cream flavors!??!) I used my homemade (in bourbon!) vanilla extract. IT’S SO CREAMY!!

  36. Elle says

    Do you find that using coconut cream omits the need for some type of emulsifier? Does it dish up smoothly or end up with some ice-crystal formation? Thanks!

    • Dana Shultz says

      It does! Be sure to use an ice cream maker to incorporate air. To help it become even creamier, you can also add 1 cup raw cashews (soaked overnight in cool water or for 1 hour in very hot water, then drained). Hope that helps!

  37. Andrea says

    Thanks so much Dana. I’m on an elimination diet for eczema, and it’s working great. I’ve googled at least 4 allergy-free recipes in the past several weeks and your blog always turns up. This recipe is a perfect solution for my ice cream craving, and your writing tells me you know your audience well. Keep it up.

  38. Avni says

    Is it necessary to refrigerate for 6 hours? Mine is already cold and it’s only been 2 hours! I have the kitchenaid ice cream maker which requires me to put the ice cream maker in the fridge for 15 hours already, so I’m wondering if the ice cream is chilled enough to put it in?

  39. marta says

    Dear Dana, I tried this recipe Saturday: the taste is very good but the consistency very different from your pictures, way more icey. I am sure it was the coconut milk, not fat enough. As I do not have access to the same brands you use, could you please indicate the % of fat of the milk you employed? Thanks a lot!

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