July 20, 2008

Green Tea Ice Cream

Posted in dessert, ice cream, recipe, tea, Uncategorized at 7:42 pm by veganalects

Tea, tea, tea. I cannot get enough tea. Everything about it delights me: the wares, the process, the associated foods…not that I’m even very knowledgeable about tea, as became clear to me when I looked at a few tea blogs. But anyway, I decided that for my first foray into ice cream-making I should attempt not vanilla or chocolate but green tea. I had the matcha powder, I now had the ice cream maker, so I had no excuse not to make it.

For ideas about how to proceed I started with Veganomicon. Its one ice cream recipe is based on coconut milk, however, and I wanted to avoid a strong coconut taste in this case. So I turned to the internet, recalling that I’d come across a vegan ice cream blog once before. It’s not too good to be true! I used a template from the extremely useful A Vegan Ice Cream Paradise, with my own add-ins. So while the recipe is mine, the credit is not.

Onto the verdict. The ice cream was really good—the ingredients were well-balanced, the tea came through nicely, it wasn’t too sweet, and (paramount for me) it was satisfyingly creamy. It fulfilled my ice cream needs and I would definitely make it again.


It’s not perfect. The texture is not quite right. It’s not sorbet, which I’ve never cared for much; it is creamy. Yet it’s not quite ice cream either—not full-fledged, silky-smooth ice cream, anyway. It’s sort of 85% ice cream, 15% sorbet. This may be an issue of veganness, but I doubt it: I have had both store-bought and homemade (well, restaurant-made) vegan ice cream that did not suffer from this flaw. My mom also said she remembers having this problem with dairy ice cream, and that the solution was to make a custard first. So I don’t know if cooking it longer would help, or increasing the creamer-to-milk ratio, or what. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Still, I’m posting the recipe because I’m mostly happy with it and I still recommend it to other vegans craving ice cream. I used an ice cream maker, but apparently there are other methods.

Green Tea Ice Cream
Makes about 1 quart

2 tablespoons arrowroot
2 cups soymilk
2 cups soy creamer
¾ cup sugar
2 tablespoons matcha (green tea powder), sifted to remove lumps
¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond extract

1. Stir the arrowroot into ¼ cup of the soymilk until dissolved. Set aside.

2. Heat the remaining soymilk and creamer in a saucepan on medium heat, stirring occasionally. Stir more frequently as the mixture approaches a boil.

3. When the liquid is gently bubbling, whisk in sugar until dissolved, then matcha until dissolved (it will not actually dissolve, but will be in suspension).

4. Remove saucepan from heat and whisk in arrowroot mixture until dissolved. Then stir in the extracts.

5. Chill for several hours to overnight, then make according your ice cream maker’s directions. You may need to freeze it for two hours after it comes out of the ice cream maker if you desire a thicker texture. Store unused ice cream in an airtight container in the freezer; it will be very hard right out of the freezer, but microwaving it for 15 seconds will soften it.


  1. I want that! I’m not a fan of hot tea, though I’ve tried and tried to like it over the years (it’s probably because I came out of the womb drinking sweet iced tea…that’s how they raise us in the south). But I’ve recently switched to iced green tea for breakfast instead of nasty soda. And I LOVE it! Since this is green tea and cold, I know I’d adore it. Problem is, I don’t have an ice cream maker….

  2. BitterSweet said,

    Green tea is my favorite flavor for ice cream, and your version sounds incredibly tempting! Perhaps I’ll give it a whirl next time I break my ice cream machine out.

  3. First off, matcha ice cream sounds quite excellent! Great idea there. I don’t know quite what to tell you about the texture issue. I’ve tried ice cream recipes from Veganomicon and Vegan Ice Cream Paradise, and I prefer the results from Ice Cream Paradise by far. I think the addition of tofu in the Veganomicon recipe makes for a really weird ice cream texture, as much as I love love love tofu. But yeah, I have to agree with you: I don’t think that recipe template is quite perfect either.

  4. veganalects said,

    Bianca- I LOVE iced green tea. I like it so much better than iced black tea, actually. I’ve never tried to make ice cream without a machine, but you could always give it a go.

    BitterSweet- Thanks!

    Ruby Red- Yeah, I thought silken tofu sounded a little weird in ice cream. Which is hard for me to say because I’m such a Veganomicon disciple. But if you’ve had any better luck with ice cream than this template, I’d love to hear about it.

  5. alabaster said,

    avocado works very well to add creamy texture without distracting from the green tea.

  6. […] sweets. Green tea ice creamhttp://www.leitesculinaria.com/recipes/cookbook/green_tea_ic.html(and here is a vegan verison of it for me) is common and sometimes daifuku (mochi dumplings) are filled with […]

  7. alltidfleiredagar said,

    I seem to remember i watched a podcast once – where the lady making the vegan ice cream (custard) used brown rice syrup for some of the sweetening. She said it was needed to keep the ice cream from crystalising. I haven’t tried it myself, but maybe it is worth a try? I am also not sure if it would work with other types of syrups. Anyways, just a thought…

  8. […] Green Tea Ice Cream ~ Avocado Coconut Milk Ice Cream ~ Candied Bacon Ice Cream ~ Chocolate Stout Ice Cream ~ Green Tea […]

  9. Matcha said,

    Matcha Green Tea Powder Buy From Amazon.com http://astore.amazon.com/matchagreenteapowder-20

  10. Karen said,


    Your ice cream looks yummy. Do you sell these or know a company that does? I have not decided to venture on getting an ice cream maker just yet.

    thanks for your input.

  11. […] 9) Green Tea Ice Cream […]

  12. Katrina said,

    Try adding a box of jello pudding mix. That helps me a lot with the creamy texture.
    And I would use agave syrup, honey, or corn syrup as a sweetener. It makes it more creamy than using straight sugar.
    Good luck!

  13. I used the brown rice syrup and it worked well. Next time I am going to try it with Agave Nectar or a combination of the two. I will let you know how it turns out. I also used tapioca starch instead of arrow root. The first freeze in the machine comes out a bit soft but a couple of hours in the freezer hardened it nicely so be sure and make it a bit ahead if you need it very firm.

  14. […] dessert I made Green Tea Soy Ice Cream.  It was loosely based on this recipe.  What I did was mixed in the […]

  15. Wow, I will definately try this as soon as I can find organic matcha powder!

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  20. Roy Charan said,

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