Pecan Pie Ice Cream

November 20, 2015

Pecan Pie Ice Cream! Vegan, Paleo and refined sugar free! A healthier treat this season.

What is this monstrosity?! I was thinking of making a pie recipe for you all, but couldn’t stop thinking about how perfect this ice cream flavour would be… Why does pie get all the pecan caramel fun? This is the ice cream for all your holidays (or non-holiday) needs! A creamy, dairy-free salted caramel ice cream with toasted pecans and plenty of vanilla… and maybe even a splash of bourbon, if you fancy (and you do)!

It’s got all the buzz words: it’s vegan, paleo, refined sugar free, fructose friendly, gluten free, grain free… phew! But is it lacking? Hell no! Yes, it’s a little healthier than regular ice cream, but this is a delicious and creamy ice cream in it’s own right and approved by my dairy-eating loved ones. Made with a coconut cream base, this ice cream is a synch to make with or without an ice cream maker. If you love caramel ice cream, you are in for a real treat.

I am posting this recipe for all my North American friends celebrating Thanksgiving next week, but also my summer lovin’ pals down here in Australia – just trying to keep everyone happy, you know? Don’t fit into either of those categories? This ice cream is for you too – don’t despair, who needs a reason to eat pecan studded caramel ice cream anyway. xx

Pecan Pie Ice Cream! Vegan, Paleo and refined sugar free! A healthier treat this festive season.

Pecan Pie Ice Cream! Vegan, Paleo and refined sugar free! A healthier treat this season.
Pecan Pie Ice Cream! Vegan, Paleo and refined sugar free! A healthier treat this festive season.

Pecan Pie Ice Cream

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Time: 1 hour +
  • Print

I imagine you could substitute in rapadura (panela) in place of the coconut sugar if preferred, but I haven’t tested it. You can easily use an alternative dairy-free milk in place of almond. Use full fat coconut cream or milk, low fat won’t be as creamy upon freezing. A reminder that my recipes are in Australian Cups – see here for more info.

Adapted from Emma Galloway’s “Hokey Pokey Ice Cream” in My Darling Lemon Thyme.

Serves 6-8 (1 litre)
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 8 min
Freezing time: 45 min + (depending on equipment)

Pecan Pie Ice Cream

150g | 1.5 cups of raw pecans
110g | 3/4 cup + 1 tbls coconut sugar
2 tsp coconut oil
185ml | 3/4 cup almond milk
800ml | 3 1/4 cups coconut cream
80ml | 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp molasses (optional)
1 tbls bourbon (optional)
sea salt, to taste

For the ice cream base: Set your oven to 160C.

Toss your pecans in 1 tablespoon on coconut sugar and the coconut oil, then bake for 8 minted till toasted. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

In a small saucepan, gently warm the almond milk with the remaining coconut sugar and stir until dissolved. Don’t let the milk get too hot, you just want it warm enough to dissolve the sugar.

In a large bowl, combine the almond milk, coconut cream, maple syrup, vanilla, molasses and bourbon. Whisk till combined. Taste, and add salt and more maple if desired (remembering that ice cream tastes less sweet when frozen).

Lastly, chop up the pecans. You can finely chop, or leave them chunky or whole – I like a mix of all three.

With an ice cream maker: Churn the ice cream as to manufacturers instructions. In last stages of churning add the toasted pecans. Once churned, transfer to a freezer-safe container and freeze till firm.

By hand: Pour the base into a shallow freezer-safe dish (such as a loaf tin) and freeze for an hour before whisking till smooth. Repeat 2-3 times, before stirring in the pecans and returning to the freezer till set. The texture won’t be exactly the same as when made with an ice cream maker, but it will still taste delicious and creamy! (I actually made the batch photographed above by hand, so rest assured – it works!)

Remove from freezer 10 minutes before serving for ease of scooping. Will keep for 1 week, but best fresh.

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  • Reply Sally Fagence November 20, 2015 at 1:28 pm

    Looks incredible Lib! I’m definatley going to try that. Does it freeze really hard or stay semi soft ? Wish I had all the ingredients to make right now!

    • Reply Liberty November 20, 2015 at 1:41 pm

      Thanks Sally! Depending on your freezer, it freezes pretty hard – just need to take it out of the freezer for 10 min before scooping. Still super creamy from the coconut milk though. If you put vanilla extract and/or the bourbon it keeps from freezing rock solid. During summer it shouldn’t be a big issue though :) xxx

      • Reply Sally Fagence November 23, 2015 at 6:16 pm

        It’s fab Lib! I made it last night in preparation for family coming from the South Island and they will be lucky if there’s any left for them! I have an icecream maker so got the ingredients together in a bowl and put it into the freezer for a couple hrs first to get slightly thick. My coconut cream turned out not to be the really high fat type but it’s still not too solid or icey and it even rolls like store bought icecream! Incredible.i guess being that it’s a wee bit low fat it kinda guilt free too which is always great! Keep up your good work … Serena and Rowans engagement party this weekend … Will send you exciting pics .. As it’s going to be beautiful! Many Thanks x

        • Reply Liberty November 23, 2015 at 7:35 pm

          Haha – I like that! It’s low fat and guilt free! ;)

          Oh I’m so glad it worked well! Yes, I found the texture very creamy and not too icy… So happy it was the same for you! Definitely scoopable!

          Congrats to Serena and Rowen, I’m very happy for them :) xxx enjoy the party

  • Reply athleticavocado November 21, 2015 at 12:44 pm

    This ice cream recipe is outstanding!! Perfect for the holidays!! love that its clean!

    • Reply Liberty November 21, 2015 at 2:15 pm

      Thanks so much! I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! X

  • Reply Barbara Herbert November 23, 2015 at 12:22 am

    Looks great, Liberty! I’ll have to give it a try for Thanksgiving next week. :-)

    • Reply Liberty November 23, 2015 at 8:09 am

      Thanks Barbara! Hope you enjoy it! Xx

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  • Reply Gwen @ Delightful Adventures December 14, 2015 at 8:20 am

    Wow! This looks amazing. I love pecan pie, but I never thought of pecan pie ice cream, great combo. I can’t wait to try this as soon as it warms up where I live, I’ve pinned for when that time comes :)

    • Reply Liberty December 14, 2015 at 6:47 pm

      Thanks so much! I hope you enjoy it! X

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  • Reply Sarah March 2, 2016 at 5:14 am

    I have a huge sweet tooth and just started working out religiously and eating fairly clean. This looks delicious and a great alternative to store bought, fat packed, ice cream. Any idea on the calorie/fat content? Or a way I could make it more suitable for my diet. Thank you!!

    • Reply Liberty March 3, 2016 at 6:02 pm

      Hi Sarah! Thanks so much for your comment. Unfortunately, I am not sure of the calorie or fat content, but this recipe is a treat (!) and the calories probably reflect that. I prefer not to focus too much on calories, choosing foods that are nourishing in vitamins as the priority… But I’m sure you would be able to find out that information online by entering the ingredients. As for altering this recipe – I would not recommend substituting the coconut cream for something of lower fat, as the texture of the icecream will suffer and be icy… The only way I can think so lower the calories is to lower or leave out the amount of maple syrup. This will make the icecream less sweet tasting though. That said, my recipes use healthy fats and unrefined sugars, so they are indeed “clean” recipes. I also use less fat and sugar than conventional recipes, and this icecream definitely has less sugar and fat than store bought. You may also want to leave out the bourbon, up to you. I hope that is helpful! It is a healthier treat, but still a treat! Let me know how you go! :)

  • Reply Pilar March 8, 2016 at 10:22 am

    The recipe calls for 800ml coconut cream, how much is that in cup?

    • Reply Liberty March 8, 2016 at 10:50 am

      Hi! Thanks for your comment. Assuming you are using US cups – about 3 and 1/3 cups.

  • Reply Sara | March 22, 2016 at 6:57 am

    This ice cream looks so mouthwatering! Pinned and shared!

    • Reply Liberty March 22, 2016 at 7:57 am

      Thanks so much, Sara! Hope you enjoy it x

  • Reply Caroline May 3, 2016 at 11:21 pm

    Hello Liberty,
    I love this recipe and I’m planning to make it for my birthday this week, served along with a piece of flourless chocolate cake.

    I’m going to make the ice cream without an ice cream maker as I don’t have any.

    I was wondering, at the whisking process if you take the ice cream mixture out of the loaf tin and then put it back or if you just whisk it in it?

    Many thanks for your help!

    Love from Switzerland


    • Reply Liberty May 4, 2016 at 7:01 am

      Hi Caroline! Thanks for your comment. Just leave it in the tin and whisk it to break up any ice crystals forming around the edges. It’ll result in smaller ice crystals and a creamy texture once fully frozen. Have a great birthday, sounds like a great match for the cake! X

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  • Reply Kim August 10, 2016 at 10:46 am

    Wow! Just made this tonight, and it’s super yummy. I used all coconut milk, and no almond milk. I also added extra vanilla, and a touch of amaretto, as I don’t have bourbon. Reminds me of eating buttered pecan ice cream many years ago, but without that awful feeling of dairy sticking to the roof of your mouth, plus no stomach upset, or yucky ingredients. I’ve been making coconut milk ice cream for several years now, and this has to be one of my faves. So delicious! I know it also helps that I’ve been using a different coconut milk for the past several months. Aroy-D- best coconut milk, by far. If you’re not already using it, once you do, you’ll wonder why you ever used anything else. Thanks for this recipe!

    • Reply Liberty August 10, 2016 at 6:17 pm

      Thanks for sharing, Kim! I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe <3 I'm in Australia so I don't know that brand of coconut milk, but I'm glad you've found one that results in creamy coconut icecream! Thanks again :)

  • Reply Mickey November 19, 2016 at 9:13 am

    This “ice cream” look delicious! Liberty, I would LOVE to share your recipe with my followers. Would you mind if I share this for a round up of delicious healthier Thanksgiving dessert options over on my fitness blog? I’d love to use a picture with your permission and of course link people over to your site :) Thanks!

    • Reply Liberty November 19, 2016 at 9:20 am

      Thanks Mickey! Happy for you to use a pic and link to the recipe on my site :)

  • Reply Lou January 17, 2017 at 11:32 pm

    When you say 800ml coconut cream do you mean coconut milk? I usually take coconut cream to mean the thick cream that settles at the top of a can of coconut milk. Just wanted to clarify as 800ml coconut cream would be pretty expensive and very thick if it’s wrong.

    • Reply Liberty January 18, 2017 at 6:02 am

      Hi Lou, in Australia we can buy tinned coconut cream which is 80-95% coconut extract – coconut milk is more like 50% plus water. You could use full fat coconut milk instead of the cream, but you may like to use a bit more coconut milk and a little less almond milk to make sure it’s creamy. Or just use all coconut milk. Hope that helps! Thanks, Liberty :)

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