The day or night before, place your ice cream churning bowl in the freezer to properly chill (see notes if you don't have an ice cream maker).
The following day, add coconut milk, organic cane sugar (sub up to half with natural sweetener), sea salt, scraped vanilla bean and vanilla extract to a high-speed blender and blend on high until completely creamy and smooth for 1-2 minutes to fully dissolve the sugar. Add more cane sugar or agave if it needs more sweetness, or more vanilla if it needs more vanilla flavor.
Add mixture directly to chilled ice cream maker and churn according to manufacturer’s instructions - about 45 minutes. It should look like soft serve (see photo). See notes if you don't have a churner.
Once churned, transfer the ice cream to a large freezer-safe container (such as a loaf pan) and use a spoon to smooth the top.
Cover securely and freeze for at least 4-6 hours or until firm. Set out for 5-10 minutes before serving to soften - a hot ice cream scoop also eases scooping.
Will keep in the freezer for up to 10 days, though best when fresh. Pairs perfectly with pies, cakes, cookies and more!
*Our favorite coconut cream is Savoy, and our favorite full fat coconut milk is Aroy-D. See our other top picks for coconut cream and milk here. Coconut cream tends to yield creamier results due to the higher fat content. We DO NOT recommend using Trader Joe's coconut milk or cream - the formulation has changed in recent years and is now more prone to separation and oiliness. *Because some readers had trouble with the coconut oil separating when chilled, I've updated the recipe to exclude it. I also recently retested to include the option to use coconut cream instead of coconut milk, and agave for up to half the cane sugar. These changes are reflected in the current recipe. *If you don't own an ice cream maker, you can add chilled mixture to a freezer-safe container and freeze. Once every hour, remove from freezer and stir /whisk to incorporate air. Repeat until mostly firm - 6-8 hours. Then continue freezing until completely firm before serving. It won't yield as creamy results, but it should still work. *Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with Savoy coconut cream.