Vegan Chai Ice Cream

Creamy VEGAN Chai Ice Cream! No boiling or chilling required!

I got addicted to chai in college when I discovered that a local coffee shop near my university served my favorite brand of spiced chai for $1.50. And it was a large chai latte, too! Somehow now chai tea lattes cost around $4 on average, so I rarely get them. It’s just principle. I’m all for treating yourself, but when you can make the same thing at home for half the price, I can rarely bring myself to do it!

Nonetheless, my love affair with chai began and it really never stopped. Chai-infused things are just lovely. And moving into spring I’m already getting into ice cream mode. Not dairy ice cream, vegan ice cream! My body can’t handle the cream and whole milk versions anymore (waaaaaaaa). But thankfully cashews and coconut milk save the day!

Soaked Cashews

This recipe is simple as it requires about 10 ingredients (give or take a spice) and doesn’t require any boiling and chilling, which saves you time. The preparation happens before you ever start by simply chilling your ice cream maker and soaking your cashews to get them blend-able and creamy.

Chai Tea

From there the chai flavor is added with a concentrated brewed chai tea and dry chai tea spices.

Chai Spices

The traditional spices in chai are cinnamon, ginger, clove, cardamom and black pepper. If you don’t have all of these on hand, just use what you have and let the chai tea compensate the rest of the flavor. And if you don’t have chai tea packets or loose leaf on hand, just use a black tea and add a touch more of each spice. Hopefully one way or the other you’ll be able to pull off that deep spicy chai flavor.

Vegan Chai Ice Cream Ingredients


Exciting news! I attempted my first recipe video and am excited to share it with you guys! Let me know what you think.

Q: Do you like recipe videos? Do you find them helpful? Would you like to see more of them on Minimalist Baker? I had a blast putting it together and look forward to developing that skill to make our recipes come to life.

Creamy Vegan Chai Ice Cream

Once you add all your ingredients to your blender, just blend until creamy and smooth. Then transfer directly into an ice cream maker and churn until thick and creamy – about 45 minutes. Scoop into a freezer safe container and freeze until firm. Then scoop, scoop away!

Creamy, Sweet, Spicy VEGAN Chai Ice Cream! You'd never guess it's dairy free + so easy!

Oh, I was SO pleased with how this turned out! It’s

and Perfectly chai-spiced

Vegan Chai Ice Cream! Simple ingredients, vegan, gluten free and SO creamy and delicious! You'd never guess it's dairy free

The best part? It tastes so creamy and rich that you’d never guess there wasn’t an ounce of cream or whole milk inside. Vegan recipes for the win! Enjoy.

Creamy Vegan Chai Ice Cream! Cashew based and SO rediculously thick and deliciousVegan Chai Ice Cream! So easy and simple and SUPER thick + deliciousSimple CREAMY Vegan Chai Ice Cream!SUPER Creamy Vegan Chai Ice Cream! No simmering or chilling required.Creamy Vegan Chai Ice Cream! Scoopable, spicy-sweet and SO thick and delicious

4.9 from 27 reviews
Vegan Chai Ice Cream
Prep time
Total time
Cashew-based vegan chai ice cream that's luxuriously creamy and spicy-sweet. Surprisingly easy with simple ingredients, plus no boiling or chilling required!
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Vegan, Gluten Free
Serves: 6
  • 1.5 cups raw cashews, soaked for 4-6 hours (or overnight), then drained
  • 1 cup light coconut milk (or sub another dairy free milk, such as almond or rice)
  • 3 packets chai tea (or ~4 tsp loose leaf, or sub black tea for a more subtle chai flavor)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted (or olive oil)
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar or maple syrup (or sub honey if not vegan)
  • 1/4 cup cane sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp each cinnamon and ginger powder
  • Optional: 1/4 tsp each black pepper, ground cloves and cardamom
  1. Set your churning bowl in the freezer the night before to chill. Soak your cashews the night before as well, or for at least 4-6 hour before blending.
  2. When ready to prepare ice cream, steep your chai tea in 3/4 cup boiling water for at least 10 minutes. It should be very strong. Remove tea bags, squeezing out excess tea, and let cool in the fridge.
  3. In the meantime, drain cashews and measure out other ingredients.
  4. Add tea and all remaining ingredients to a blender and blend until creamy and smooth - about 3-4 minutes, using liquify if you have the option. Taste and adjust sweetness/flavors as needed.
  5. Add mixture to your chilled ice cream maker bowl and churn according to manufacturer’s instructions until thoroughly chilled, about 45 minutes. It should resemble thick soft serve.
  6. Transfer to a freezer-safe container, cover and freeze until hard - at least 6 hours, preferably overnight. Will keep in the freezer for up to a week.
*If you don’t have all of the spices on hand, just add what you have and let the chai tea concentrate compensate the flavor.
*Inspired by / loosely adapted from Isa Chandra.
*Preparation time reflects hands-on preparation, not soaking cashews and extra freezing.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1/2 cup Calories: 371 Fat: 26 g Saturated fat: 12 g Carbohydrates: 31 g Sugar: 20 g Sodium: 16 mg Fiber: 1 g Protein: 5.7 g


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    • Dana Shultz says

      I wouldn’t go for ALL almonds, but rather, a mix of macadamia nuts and almonds, if he can have them. I don’t know how creamy almonds would get on their own. Hope that helps!!

  1. Rachel says

    This might seem like a silly question and I looked through other comments but I couldn’t find the answer. What do you soak the cashews in? Just water or something else?

  2. Kristen says

    Awww – I so want to try this, but there’s that horrible issue of being SEVERELY allergic to cashews. Have you had any experience with any other nuts such as peanuts or almonds?

    • Dana Shultz says

      maybe sub half macadamia nuts and then up the amount of coconut oil? Not sure how well almonds would work, especially with their skin.

  3. Sarah says

    Hi! First, I want to say the my husband, 15 month old daughter and I LOVE this recipe. I made it non-chai be replacing the tea with more coconut milk and subbing xylitol for the agave. It turned out absolutely amazing and SO creamy! We are addicted. My question is….I made a single batch the first time and it turned out perfect and smooth. I doubled it the second time and the texture is definitely not as smooth. I’m not sure what happened. Have you doubled successfully or have any ideas why the texture would not be as smooth?

  4. Verena says

    Hey, your ice cream looks totally delicious! :D
    What kind of ice cream maker do you use? I’ve found one on amazon which looks a bit like the one in the video but I’d like to be on the safe side before buying it ;)
    Thanks and best wishes!

  5. Cynthia G says

    We just made a batch of this and my husband and I both were licking the churn before we got it into the freezer for dinner

  6. Jason says

    Because cashews are used in several recipes and i’ve heard that they should be consumed sparingly, I’m interested to know what their purpose is. Are they just a fatty nut that contributes to emulsifying?


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