Right now you're thinking to yourself "OK, Kim. Now you've gone and done it!" And you know what, I have. I have done it. I have made the holy grail of frozen treats. Chipwiches, as we used to call them as kids (anyone else?!), are the greatest frozen dessert known to humankind. When they're free from gluten, refined sugar, and dairy, well they're the actual queen of frozen desserts and I am here to worship.
OK that's pushing it a little, but these ice cream sandwiches are truly out of this world.
I'd be remiss if I didn't credit my good friend Matty for this idea. His birthday is the day before my husband's and when I asked them if there was a frozen dessert they'd like me to contribute to their special days, he immediately asked for me to make chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches to which I happily obliged. Birthday cake ice cream, ice cream sandwiches, and tres leches cake made by his girlfriend... these guys got SPOILED for their birthday!
The recipe below is for the vanilla ice cream filling. First, head on over to the Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe (with vegan options if you need) and make these cookies. You'll want to make them slightly larger than you'd typically make a chocolate chip cookie and the recipe will yield you 12 cookies = 6 ice cream sandwiches. Simply double it if you need more, which you honestly do because who doesn't need more ice cream sandwiches?!
NOTE: If you don't already know, dairy free ice cream hardens easily and needs time to defrost. I did find that with these ice cream sandwiches it takes a bit longer than if you simply made a pint of ice cream. You can leave them at room temp to thaw for 20-30 minutes, keeping an eye on them or you can soften up in the microwave. Either way, they're every bit worth the wait!
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1 can full fat coconut milk
1 can coconut cream
1-2 tbsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste (adjust depending on the level of vanilla you prefer)
1/4 cup monk fruit or sugar of choice
pinch sea salt
Over low heat, pour canned coconut milk + cream into a small pot, whisking until smooth. Allow to heat but not fully boil.
While still heating, stir in vanilla extract, pinch of salt, and gelatin whisking again to combine.
Pour ice cream base into heat proof container, cover and allow to set in the fridge about 45 mins.
Once the coconut mixture is cool, add to frozen bowl of ice cream maker + churn according to machine instructions.
Scoop ice cream onto cookies and sandwich. Store in the freezer in a ziplock bag.
Note: Prepare ice cream once cookies are baked + chilled. I chilled my cookies for about an hour in the fridge on parchment lined baking sheets. The ice cream is much easier to work with directly out of the ice cream maker as it is still a soft serve consistency. Freeze for 1 hour before serving for best results.
You also will NOT need to double the ice cream recipe when doubling the cookie recipe. If you do not choose to double the cookie recipe, you will have about 1 pint of ice cream leftover.
**I have not tested the vegan version of ice cream sandwiches. From my experience with baking the vegan chocolate chip cookies, it should work just fine. If not, let me know in the comments!