How to make the best delicious and creamy banana ice cream recipe at home for a healthy dessert or snack, with just one ingredient and unlimited flavor options!
Easy one ingredient banana ice cream
One of the most frequent requests I receive each month is from readers asking for more banana ice cream or nice cream recipes.
The basic concept is simple: Just blend peeled and frozen bananas in a food processor or blender until the results resemble a creamy soft serve ice cream texture!
After you have the base, you can create an endless array of custom flavors, including dark chocolate, blueberry, nutella, caramel, coffee, rocky road, or butter pecan.
Also try this Almond Milk Ice Cream (with no banana)
Homemade nice cream ingredients
This is a super short list, as bananas are the only required ingredient!
Depending on the strength of your blender, you may want to add a small amount of milk of choice or another liquid, such as pineapple juice, to help with the blending process. For vegan nice cream, any plant based milk is fine to use.
Optional add-ins or toppings are completely up to you. I’ve included a few of my favorite flavor combinations below, but feel free to experiment.
Inspiration is everywhere – from restaurant menus, to grocery store displays, to even looking up the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavor list online.
In other words, don’t be surprised if you ever see a Peanut Butter Fudge Core banana soft serve ice cream recipe show up here on this blog.
Want cookie dough nice cream? Add Chickpea Cookie Dough!
Above, watch the banana ice cream recipe video
Banana Ice Cream Flavors
Chocolate Banana Ice Cream: Use 3 bananas. Add 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract, pinch salt, and 3 tbsp cocoa powder.
Mint Chocolate Chip: Use 2 bananas and a pinch of salt. Add 1/8 tsp pure peppermint extract (or more if desired), and stir in chocolate chips or cacao nibs after blending. Optional, blend in a pinch of spirulina or a small handful spinach for color and an extra nutrient boost.
Nutella Nice Cream: Blend a generous spoonful of Homemade Nutella or your favorite chocolate hazelnut spread in with the bananas.
Peanut Butter: Make the original recipe below, adding 2-3 tbsp peanut butter or another nut butter or allergy friendly alternative before blending.
Piña Colada: Make the original recipe below, using 1/4 cup canned coconut milk as your milk of choice. Blend in 1/2 cup frozen pineapple. Stir in shredded coconut if desired.
Cookies’n Cream: Make the original recipe below, adding 2 tbsp coconut butter if desired. After blending, add in a crushed Oreo cookie sandwich.
Very Berry: Make the original recipe below, adding 1 cup frozen berries of choice and 1/8 tsp pure vanilla extract.
Strawberry: Use 2 bananas. Blend in 1/2 cup frozen strawberries. Add 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract and optional shake of cinnamon.
Vanilla Bean: Use 3 bananas and a pinch of salt. Add 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste.
Pistachio: Make the original recipe below, adding 2-3 tbsp pistachio butter and 1/8 tsp pure vanilla extract. Sprinkle crushed pistachios on top if desired.
How to make banana ice cream
Once your bananas are ripe (when the peels are at least partially brown), peel them and cut into pieces. Freeze in a ziploc bag or container.
You can do this step days, weeks, or even months in advance so there’s no need to wait when you are ready to make banana ice cream.
To make the nice cream, start by tossing the frozen pieces of about three bananas into a food processor or blender. No need to be exact with measuring, and feel free to double or triple the recipe for a larger serving or to feed a family.
If using a regular blender instead of a high speed one like a Vitamix, or if your frozen bananas are rock hard, add a few tablespoons milk of choice or another liquid.
Blend until the mixture resembles a thick and smooth soft serve texture.
Either transfer to a bowl and enjoy right away, or spread the banana soft serve into a container and freeze for thirty minutes or so to get a firmer ice cream texture.
Usually, I will eat the banana ice cream in a bowl, straight out of the blender, because this option involves no waiting. If you do want the firmer texture, I recommend scooping it out with an ice cream scoop after chilling, for authentic presentation.
Try topping it with homemade Coconut Whipped Cream!
Recipe tips and tricks
While banana ice cream is a wonderful and refreshing healthy snack on its own, adding a little fat to the blender, such as peanut butter, almond butter, or coconut milk, can even make it start to taste pretty similar to actual ice cream!
Be sure to let the bananas ripen before peeling and freezing. If they are green or entirely yellow with no brown spots when you buy them, it means the fruit is not yet ripe and will have more of an earthy taste than a sweet one.
Let the bananas sit on the counter until the peels at least begin to turn brown. I like to wait until they are almost entirely brown, because brown bananas develop a rich caramelized flavor. Ripe bananas are a great natural sweetener option that can be used in many recipes instead of added sugar.
This soft serve banana nice cream is even healthy enough to eat for breakfast, with no heavy cream or added sugars. The recipe can be fat free, dairy free, egg free, vegan, raw, paleo, and gluten free.
Readers also love this Chia Pudding Recipe
More Healthy Ice Cream Recipes
- 3 overripe frozen bananas
- optional milk of choice, if needed
- optional pinch salt
- see above for different flavor ideas
Peel ripe bananas, and slice them into a few pieces. Freeze in a bag or container. This can be done months in advance so there’s no need to wait when you’re ready to make the ice cream. Once frozen, toss about three banana’s worth of pieces into a food processor or blender. If not using a high speed blender (such as a Vitamix), or if bananas are frozen rock solid, add a few tablespoons of liquid. Blend until smooth. Either eat right away as soft serve, or freeze in a container for about thirty minutes for a firmer texture, then scoop out with an ice cream scoop.View Nutrition Facts