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Creme Fraiche Ice Cream Recipe with Nutella Chunks

Preview: Make this decadent Creme Fraiche Ice Cream recipe with Nutella chunks in your small-batch ice cream freezer.

Are you familiar with creme fraiche? You can buy it or make it. Last year I published a recipe for homemade creme fraiche. Make it with heavy cream and yogurt, buttermilk, or yogurt whey. Now you have even more motivation to make some for this delicious ice cream recipe.

First, combine the tartness of creme fraiche with a sweet cream base. This creates the perfect backdrop for frozen chunks of Nutella chocolate hazelnut spread.

Last year, I published a recipe for creme fraiche made with whey or yogurt for all my yogurt-making friends. If you have never tried creme fraiche, see that post for more information about the origins and characteristics of this magical cream.

True Confessions…

This ice cream was a “pandemic addiction” for me. Would you please tell me I’m not the only one who acquired a few bad habits last year? I used to eat this ice cream almost every day after finishing my mega salad.

Two bowl of Creme Fraiche Ice Cream with Nutella Chunks--ready to eat

Here’s how I did it: Fill small 2-ounce salad dressing cups with the ice cream. Do it while the ice cream is still a soft-serve consistency. Pop on a lid and freeze. You don’t need much because this stuff satisfies!

individual servings of ice cream in solo cups
Homemade ice cream dished up in 2-ounce portions (this is not an ad for Solo cups)

Recipe inspiration:

Thanks to the owner of the crispy waffle website where I was first inspired to create this recipe.

My recipe starts with the vanilla-flavored cream base from Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream Cookbook. Their recipes are simple and fresh-tasting. I use this same base for my coffee ice cream and blackberry ice cream with chocolate shards.

From there, I added the creme fraiche and the frozen Nutella chunks.

Here’s the deal with creme fraiche:

If you add it to the ice cream mixture initially, creme fraiche tends to turn the whole sweet cream base into creme fraiche. Therefore, wait until immediately before freezing your ice cream to add creme fraiche to the chilled milk, eggs, and sugar.

What are Nutella chunks?

You can’t buy them that I know of, but you can easily make them yourself.

It turns out the best method is to make Nutella “chunks” or bits. First, spread Nutella into a thin layer on a plastic-wrap-covered paper plate. Place into the freezer.

When frozen, chop the Nutella into pieces and return it to the freezer immediately. It thaws fast. Stir the chunks into your ice cream before transferring it into a small container to put into the freezer.

Why not stir Nutella into the cream base straight out of the jar?

Most Nutella ice cream recipes online call for adding the Nutella simultaneously as the milk, sugar, and eggs. So it ends up looking and tasting similar to chocolate ice cream.

I prefer to taste and see the Nutella. At first, I tried to stir the soft Nutella into the ice cream when the ice cream was a soft-serve consistency. Y’know–looking for a swirly effect.

Unfortunately, the Nutella froze so fast; I ended up with big clumps of chocolate. They were too big to eat and too hard to cut with a spoon. Although making small chunks is an extra step, I enjoy the Nutella more this way.

ADDENDUM 9/6/21: Thanks to Dorie Greenspan, I’ve found a new way to add Nutella to my ice cream without turning it into chocolate ice cream.

Add 1 tablespoon of coconut oil to 4 ounces of Nutella. Warm gently in the microwave for 30 seconds and stir together. Add this mixture to your ice cream at the end of the cycle when it is frozen firm. As you stir it in, the Nutella mixture will turn into flakes. The effect is not quite the same as Nutella chunks, but it’s a lot easier and very delicious.


Ingredients and substitutions:

  • EGGS: This recipe is written for large-sized eggs. Many ice cream recipes call for eggs to be cooked into a custard-type mixture which requires more time… and dirty dishes.

    My family prefers the fresher taste of uncooked eggs, so I pasteurize them myself when that is a concern. (More about that below.)
  • SUGAR: Use only granulated sugar for the best texture. Using a sugar substitute may have unpredictable results.
  • WHOLE MILK: Whole-fat milk is recommended. I have used 2% milk in the past to avoid a trip to the grocery store. It doesn’t store as well or have the best texture, but it will still satisfy an ice cream craving.
  • HEAVY CREAM: You could use half-and-half or whole milk, but your ice cream will freeze harder and the texture won’t be as creamy.
  • VANILLA EXTRACT: Use a good vanilla extract. Vanilla beans or a vanilla bean paste would be even better if you are lucky enough to have some.
Ingredients needed to make Creme Fraiche Ice Cream with Nutella Chunks
  • CREME FRAICHE: Buy this or make it yourself with heavy cream and yogurt or yogurt whey. You could use heavy cream instead. Then you will have regular vanilla ice cream with Nutella chunks. Substitute 1 cup of heavy cream for the creme fraiche so that you still use a total of 2 cups of heavy cream.

    Another variation: If you prefer, use 2 cups of creme fraiche and no heavy cream. I LOVE it that way.
  • NUTELLA CHUNKS: This is what I make using a jar of Nutella (see recipe and pictures below). You could also do this with peanut butter. Or substitute your favorite chocolate bar chopped into shards.

single bowl of ice cream with a jar of Nutella in the background.

FAQ

Is it safe to use raw eggs in this recipe?

Whenever you use raw eggs in an uncooked recipe, you run the risk of food-borne illness. This is particularly concerning for the very young, old, or someone with a compromised immune system.

If this is a concern for you, buy pasteurized eggs at the grocery store or pasteurize them yourself. According to the International Egg Pasteurization Manual, this involves holding the eggs at 140˚F for 3.5 minutes. If you want a video showing specifics about pasteurizing eggs at home, check YouTube.

A Sous Vide (paid link) makes it simple to bring the eggs to the exact temperature needed and hold it without babysitting. It might be a good excuse to put one on your Christmas list.

Pasteurized eggs are also handy for homemade mayonnaise and French Silk Pie.

Can I make this ice cream without an ice cream freezer?

Yes, you can. Check out this post by thekitchn.com on how to make ice cream without an ice cream maker.

Making Creme Fraiche Ice Cream with Nutella Chunks:

eggs and sugar before beating
1. Add eggs and sugar to a medium bowl.
Beating eggs and sugar in a bowl using a portable mixer.
2. Beat until the mixture is light and lemon-colored with a whisk or electric mixer.
Adding whole milk, salt, vanilla, and heavy cream to sugar and eggs.
3. Add whole milk, salt, vanilla, and heavy cream to sugar and eggs.
Pre-chilling ice cream mixture.
4. Cover and chill for 3-4 hours or overnight.
Spreading Nutella on a paper plate.
5. Spread Nutella in a thin layer on a plastic-wrap-covered paper plate. Freeze.
Measuring out creme fraiche.
6. Measure out prepared creme fraiche
Thinning creme fraiche
7. Thin the creme fraiche with the ice cream mixture, then combine.
Pouring ice cream in to frozen ice cream insert.
8. Pour prepared ice cream into a frozen ice cream freezer and start to churn it. This is a Donvier hand crank ice cream freezer. (Seems like this ice cream maker is only available “used.” 🥲)
chopping up frozen Nutella
9. While the ice cream is freezing, remove the frozen Nutella from the freezer. Transfer to a small cutting board and chop into pieces about the size of chocolate chips. Do this quickly before the Nutella softens.
Chopped Nutella chunks
10. Return the chips to the freezer until the ice cream is almost done
Adding Nutella chunks back to ice cream
11. Add the Nutella pieces when the ice cream mixture is frozen but not yet hard.
Mixing in Nutella chunks.
12. Continue freezing ice cream with Nutella pieces added.
Finished Nutella ice cream before transferring to another container.
13. Remove from the freezer into an airtight container, cover with plastic wrap, and place it back into the freezer to harden for 4-5 hours.

Would you like to see more ice cream recipes?


Did you enjoy this recipe? If so, you can help others and me by leaving a 5-star 🤩 rating inside the recipe below. No comments are required.

Hope to see you again soon!
Paula

p.s. If you have any questions or suggestions, you can email me privately: Paula at saladinajar.com.


Yield: 1 quart

Creme Fraiche Ice Cream Recipe with Nutella Chunks

Crème Fraîche Ice Cream in a dish with Nutella jar in the background

Make this decadent and creamy Creme Fraiche Ice Cream with chunks of frozen Nutella at home using your small-batch ice cream freezer.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Additional Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggs (100 gr)
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar (132 gr)
  • 1 cup (8 oz) whole milk (227 gr)
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (5 gr)
  • 1 cup heavy cream (240 gr)
  • 1 cup creme fraiche (see notes below for homemade version) (240 gr)
  • 1/3 cup Nutella chocolate hazelnut spread (80 gr)

Instructions

  1. Beat eggs and sugar in a medium mixing bowl until sugar is dissolved and the mixture is fluffy and light-colored.
  2. Add milk and salt. Continue to mix.
  3. Add heavy cream and mix just until smooth.
  4. Cover and chill for at least 3-4 hours or overnight.
  5. Prepare the Nutella. Cover a plate tightly with plastic wrap. Spread Nutella in a thin layer on the plate. Put the plate into the freezer
  6. Place creme fraiche into a small bowl. Add a spoonful of the ice cream mixture to the crème fraîche and whisk until smooth. Add another spoonful or two and continue to whisk until creme fraiche is smooth and pourable.
  7. Add thinned crème fraîche to the chilled ice cream mixture and gently stir until well mixed.
  8. Pour ice cream mixture into a 1-1/2 to 2-qt ice cream freezer that has been pre-frozen. Freeze ice cream according to the manufacturer's directions.
  9. While ice cream is freezing, remove frozen Nutella from the freezer and chop with a knife. Act quickly because it melts fast. Place it back into the freezer.
  10. When ice cream freezes to a soft-serve consistency, mix in the chopped Nutella pieces.
  11. Transfer ice cream to another container and place it into your freezer to firm up before serving.

Notes

To Make Homemade Crème Fraîche:


Heat one cup of heavy whipping cream up to 100˚F. (In my microwave, it takes about 1 minute and 30 seconds on HIGH, but yours may take less time. Check after 1 minute.) Stir in 1 tablespoon of fresh unflavored yogurt, whey from yogurt (the clear liquid that gathers on top), or buttermilk. Loosely cover. Set in a warm place where it won't be disturbed. When set like Jello (8-24 hours), store crème fraîche in the refrigerator. Keeps for about 2 weeks.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

9

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 348Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 106mgSodium: 98mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 1gSugar: 23gProtein: 4g

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