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Creme Fraiche Ice Cream with vanilla bean

Creme Fraiche Ice Cream has a lovely, earthy flavor that goes well with fresh fruit, cooked fruit desserts and any type of ice cream sauce. Mmm, it’s so good. 

a glass bowl filled with creme fraiche ice cream with a jar of butterscotch sauce in the background.

I love making ice cream at home. Sure, it’s easy enough to buy ice cream, but it’s fun to play with different flavors when making your own. For years I have used the same cream and milk base and simply added different ingredients to make new flavors.

Ice Cream can be made with diary products other than milk and cream.

Recently, I’ve moved beyond heavy cream and have been experimenting with a variety of dairy products as the base for ice cream. I’ve made Cheesecake Ice Cream using cream cheese as the base. Because of my love affair with buttermilk as an ingredient, I just had to make Buttermilk Ice Cream, YUM!

So now I’m making ice cream with another alternate dairy product, creme fraiche. Have you ever tried creme fraiche? I love it. It has a texture similar to sour cream, but it’s not overtly sour.

I would describe creme fraiche’s flavor as earthy with a bit of a cheesy background note. I know, I know, I’m not making it sound delicious. But creme fraiche really has a specific, wonderful and complex flavor.

I originally made this ice cream last fall to go with Apple Tarte Tatin. Because of the holiday rush I didn’t have time to photograph either the tart or the ice cream. So, no blog post at that time.

Now, ice cream season is coming! It’s time to break out my ice cream maker and get to work. I couldn’t wait to give you this recipe for Creme Fraiche Ice Cream, which has me completely obsessed. Since the recipe was already done, I just had to run a batch and take the photos to get it to you.

Scroll through the process photos to see how-to make Creme Fraiche Ice Cream:

mixing egg yolks for creme fraiche ice cream
Whisk the yolks with the sugar
adding creme fraiche to custard to make ice cream
Stir the creme fraiche into the custard. It will thin out a bit as it heats up.
cooking custard for homemade ice cream
Cook the custard until it coats the back of a spatula or spoon.
a container of creme fraiche ice cream with a scooper
a glass bowl with two scoops of creme fraiche ice cream and a spoon

The rich earthy flavor of Creme Fraiche Ice Cream complements sweet and tart fruit flavors. It pairs perfectly with fruit pie, fruit compote, fruit preserves or fresh fruit.

Ummm, I guess I shouldn’t admit to eating an embarassingly big bowl of Creme Fraiche Ice slathered with Butterscotch Sauce last weekend. But I did, and I’m not sorry. It was totally worth the calories…

Now that you’ve made this recipe what should you do with all the extra egg whites? Check out this collection of recipes that use extra whites for some great ideas.

If you love this recipe as much as I do please consider giving it 5 stars.

creme fraiche ice cream 3a

Creme Fraiche Ice Cream

Yield: 1 quart
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Chilling Time: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 20 minutes

Creme Fraiche Ice Cream has a lovely, earthy flavor that goes well with fresh fruit, cooked fruit desserts and any type of ice cream sauce.


  • 3 containers (7oz or 198g each container) creme fraiche
  • 1 cup (8 oz, 240 ml) whole milk
  • 1 cup (8 oz, 2240 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean or 1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
  • 6 egg yolks
  • Pinch of salt


  1. Combine the milk and creme fraiche in a saucepan. Scrape the seeds out of the vanilla bean and add them to the cream along with the pod. Heat over medium high. As the mixture heats up it will thin out a bit. Heat just until scalding hot. Do not allow the milk come to a full boil.
  2. While the milk mixture is heating, whisk together the yolks, sugar and salt. Whisk the scalding hot milk into the yolks. Return the mixture to the pan and reduce the heat to medium low. Cook the custard, stirring constantly, until it coats the back of a spoon or spatula.
  3. Strain the mixture into a bowl, allow it to cool to room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6-8 hours, until very cold. Run the custard in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's directions.
  4. Pack into a container. Place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the ice cream and cover the container with a lid. Freeze 8 hours or overnight.

Did you make this recipe?

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Brad Ermeling

Monday 8th of January 2018

Thanks. Will give it a try!!! Love the recipe.

Brad Ermeling

Monday 8th of January 2018

Would you keep these amounts for 1.25 quart machine? Or would you make a smaller custard base?

Eileen Gray

Monday 8th of January 2018

Hi Brad, I can't say for sure, but I think it will probably fit. Worst comes to worst, you might just have to scoop a little out and eat it!

Brad Ermeling

Monday 8th of January 2018

Thank you! I have a small 1 quart machine so I was trying to decide if I should use the full recipe or make a little less and adjust the amounts.

Brad Ermeling

Saturday 6th of January 2018

How much does this yield?

Eileen Gray

Saturday 6th of January 2018

Hi Brad, you'll get about 3.5 - 4 cups of ice cream. The exact volume will depend on your ice cream maker and how much air gets incorporated into the frozen ice cream.


Wednesday 7th of June 2017

Homemade ice cream is so beyond good! So much fun and so exciting. It is the perfect treat for the summer months and also after dinner treat.

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