If you only try one of my recipes this summer,

May 30th, 2012 12:00 pm by Kelly Garbato

make it the Banana Bread Soft Serve ice cream. Seriously, I cannot tell you how much I love this stuff, whether straight out of the food processor

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or frozen overnight.

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Tastes just like banana bread. But healthier! And chilly! No hot oven required! What more could you ask of a summertime treat?

That second pic, by the by, represents my best attempt at staging. I feel like my food photos have gotten marginally better over the years, but I’m afraid I just don’t have an eye for this sort of thing.

Until I get a shiny new DSLR (recommendations?!?), though, I will continue to blame my sub-par photography on the camera. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.


Banana Bread Soft Serve

(Makes about a quart of ice cream; updated from the original version.)


4-5 overripe bananas, peeled, sliced and frozen
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 cup chocolate chips
sugar to taste (optional)
a splash of non-dairy milk or creamer, if needed


1. Put the bananas in the food processor and pulse until smoothly blended. Most likely you’ll need to stir them by hand several times, as the frozen chunks tend to gather and become “stuck” on one side of the bowl. If necessary, add a splash of non-dairy milk or creamer to get things moving!

Alternately, you can allow the bananas to defrost on the counter top for 30 to 60 minutes beforehand, so that they’re easier to work with. Before putting them in the food processor, break them up into smaller chunks with a butter knife.

Note: Since introducing extra liquids (such as non-dairy milk) into the mix results in a slightly icier finished product, I prefer defrosting to non-dairy milk. If you’re in a hurry, pop the bananas in the microwave for 20 to 45 seconds instead.

2. If the bananas aren’t sweet enough for your taste (sometimes this happens if you freeze them before they’re sufficiently ripe), add a bit of sugar to taste. Any sugar works fine – white, brown, etc. – but I find that powdered sugar results in a smoother blend.

3. Add the vanilla, cinnamon, allspice, and chocolate chips and pulse until well-blended. Sample the batter and any extra spices to taste.

4. Transfer the ice cream to an airtight container. Enjoy immediately as soft serve, or pop the ice cream in the freezer for an hour+ for a firmer dessert. Store any leftovers in the freezer in an airtight container. If the frozen banana ice cream proves too hard to scoop, microwave it for ten seconds to help loosen it up (or let the container sit on the counter for ten to thirty minutes prior to eating, depending on room temp).

5. Serve with sprinkles, chocolate chips, or extra bananas to garnish – or sandwich a scoop between two slices of banana bread for a special snack!

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