Two tone ice cream stripes with a pop of peppermint and a hint of cacao, this Candy Cane Nice Cream is a holiday-festive frozen fruity feast made right in the blender!
Peppermint. As a flavor–love it. With chocolate–the best. Where we start to have a problem is with visual representation. Because candy canes taste like peppermint, but peppermint doesn’t look like candy canes. Peppermint is a leaf, but leaves don’t look Christmas-y unless they are holly leaves, which taste nothing like candy canes.
Did you follow that? I’m not sure I did even. Allow me to elaborate…
I could’ve simply
poured carefully added a little bit of peppermint extract to a blender full of banana ice cream and called it candy cane complete. But who would’ve believed that it wasn’t just plain old nice cream? No one. The classic candy cane coloring is essential.
Crushed up candy canes on top? I could’ve gone that direction. But healthy-ish vegan candy canes are hard to find and you can’t buy just one and as I learned from this photo shoot they make things quite sticky. Plus I didn’t want the nice cream to just be garnished with candy cane I wanted nice cream to BE the candy cane. Red, white, minty, striped–the whole candy cane shebang. And once I had this cold, creamy candy-cane-in-a-jar vision in my head, I had to see it through to it’s deliciously enticing end.
So on to the tricky task of making red ice cream that doesn’t end up pink.
Strawberries + banana–pink.
Rasberries + banana–darker pink.
Pitaya + banana–the most amazing almost-neon pink that I can never believe is for real.
See, no red anywhere on that list. Plus berries + peppermint sounds a little funky on the flavor front.
Taking a cue from cupcakes, beet seemed like a good idea. If it works for red velvet it can work for red candy cane stripes, right? The answer is yes, but only with some assistance from chocolate. Beet by itself is more Valentine’s pink than Christmas red. However, with a tablespoon or so of cacao powder to deepen the color and a dash of peppermint oil or extract, I call it candy cane perfect. And I’m not complaining about the necessary added chocolate flavor either!
Pink + brown = red? Apparently yes. But be careful, pink + too much brown still = ugly.
Now that we have the two tones of nice cream sorted out, all that’s left is stripes and sprinkle-y bits. I used a piping bag for clean stripe lines, but simply using a spoon and going for a swirl look would be lovely too. The sprinkle-y toppings could be anything, but for festive-ness I chose pomegranate seeds (because they look like Christmas lights) coconut (because it looks like snow) and chocolate (because it’s chocolate). Chocolate shavings to be exact, because as this cake taught me that looks extra fancy.
I know, I know everyone is in cozy-craving not cold-creamy mode right now. But actually snowflakes, snowmen, snowballs, the North Pole–those things are all very trendy these days, so this frozen festive fruity feast fits right in!
Yields 2 servings
Two toned ice cream stripes with a pop of peppermint and a hint of cacao, this Candy Cane Nice Cream is a holiday-festive frozen fruity feast made right in the blender!
10 minPrep Time
10 minTotal Time
4 frozen bananas
1/2 cup cooked beet
1-2 tbsp cacao powder
4 frozen bananas
1/4 tsp peppermint extract (or a few drops of peppermint oil)
- Blend the ingredients for the red ice cream until smooth and creamy, adjusting the amount of beet and cacao powder until it is a deep shade of red. Transfer to a bowl and set in the freezer.
- Blend the white ice cream until smooth and creamy.
- Layer the ice creams in a jar/jars, sprinkle on toppings of choice, and enjoy!
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