Nice Cream Recipe

Ultimately the easiest and healthiest dessert ever, this two-ingredient, easy banana nice cream recipe (basically banana ice cream) is dairy free and still full of flavor. Forget about the ice cream maker! All you’ll need is a freezer and a food processor (or blender). The results? A silky smooth frozen banana ice cream! Make it today and serve with chocolate syrup!

Several scoops of banana nice cream in a glass bowl with a spoon.

I love a good sweet treat that’s 100% natural and no added sugars. I couldn’t believe how easy it was to make this banana ice cream recipe.

Ingredient Spotlight

A bunch of 3 very ripe bananas sit on a white counter.

What Bananas for Nice Cream?

Use ripe bananas for the most flavorful and sweet nice cream. Look for bananas with brown spots. You can use yellow bananas, but you may need to add sweetener.

What You Need

You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.

Here are the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe:

  • Bananas — I prefer using ripe bananas.
  • Macadamia nuts (optional) — These nuts are optional but they add lots of creaminess!

How to Make Nice Cream

  1. Slice the bananas
  2. Freeze the bananas (I put mine in a freezer bag)
  3. Place frozen banana chunks in a blender. Let them sit for a minute or two to get softer.
  4. Add macadamia nuts for an even creamier result
  5. Pulse until smooth.

Wondering how to make banana nice cream? Well, there’s only one secret ingredient to this delicious two-ingredient recipe. If you haven’t already guessed it, bananas are the miracle ingredient here.

Lucky for me, a recent trip to Costco resulted in a big bunch of ripe bananas. I love vegan shopping at Costco!

That’s it!

A banana on a cutting board with several chopped bananas next to it.
You can use a butter knife to cut bananas.

Frequently-Asked Questions

What is Nice Cream?

NiceCream means “nana ice cream.” It’s basically frozen bananas blended and whipped into ice cream. Is nice cream vegan you may ask? Well, yes, it is because it’s made entirely with plant-based ingredients.

Can you use a blender to make frozen banana ice cream?

Yes, you can use a blender to make nice cream. In fact, one of the best things about this ice cream banana dessert is you don’t even need a fancy ice cream freezer to make it. No pre-cooking the ice cream mix in a saucepan either. How much easier could this be!

How long does it take for bananas to freeze in the freezer?

I’ve found you need to allow at least two hours for banana slices to freeze in the freezer. Here’s how to freeze bananas for nice cream: place banana slices on a tray and place that tray in the freezer. Then transfer to a freezer bag after an hour, that way the slices won’t get stuck to each other.
Or you can place banana slices directly into a freezer bag, just try to lay the bag flat so the bananas freeze in an individual layer.

You can serve this frozen dessert more like banana soft serve, or freeze it and serve it out with an ice cream scoop. It’s a versatile recipe and you can add your own favorite ingredients and toppings like chocolate syrup or peanut butter drizzle.

Chopped bananas are placed in a ziplock bag ready to go in the freezer.
Place chopped bananas in a freezer bag.

Once they’re frozen, put banana slices in a food processor or blender and blend away. After a minute or two, the frozen banana chunks magically transform into very creamy, albeit rich, healthy homemade ice cream.

Nice Cream Flavors

There are so many ways to create delicious nice cream flavors! Here are some of my favorites:

  • Add 1/2 cup of frozen blueberries for a colorful and tasty dessert
  • Substitute 1/2 cup of full-fat coconut milk for the macadamia nuts for a creamy, coconut-infused flavor
  • Of course, adding chocolate will make this recipe so good. I like adding around 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder to the mixture while blending. You may need to add some sweetener too, so be sure to take a taste test.
  • Strawberry nice cream is easy to make by adding 1/2 cup chopped frozen strawberries to the blender.

When adding any frozen fruit to a blender, be sure to let it sit for a moment or two before blending, to help it soften up.

Several scoops of banana nice cream in a serving dish with a spoon.

And if you’re like me and can’t follow a recipe to save yourself, you’ll like the fact that I recommend a second ingredient. I’ve found adding just a few macadamia nuts makes a big, creamy impact on this vegan banana ice cream recipe!

Also, adding some fun toppings help too!

More Frozen Recipes

Several scoops of nice cream in a glass serving dish.
Vegan Nice Cream can be served with your favorite toppings, like chocolate chips.
Chunky Monkey Vegan Ice Cream

Banana Nice Cream

You won't believe how easy it is to make vegan banana nice cream and how delicious and creamy it is to eat! You can adapt this recipe to add some of your favorite flavors!
5 from 3 votes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
3 hours
Total Time: 13 minutes
Servings: 2
Calories: 143kcal
Author: Marly

Ingredients

Banana Nice Cream

  • 2 cups sliced frozen bananas (2 large ripe bananas)
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup (optional)

Flavor Options

  • Berry (Base recipe + 1 cup frozen berries)
  • Vanilla (Base recipe + 2 teaspoons vanilla extract)
  • Peanut Butter (Base recipe + 2 tablespoons peanut butter)
  • Chocolate (Base recipe + 2 tablespoons cocoa powder)
  • Caramel (Base recipe + 4 to 5 medjool dates)
  • Cherry (Base recipe + 1 cup frozen cherries)
  • Blueberry (Base recipe + 1 cup frozen blueberries)
  • Strawberry (Base recipe + 1 cup frozen strawberries)
  • Cookies and Cream (Base recipe + 1 cup chopped chocolate sandwich cookies)
  • Pineapple (Base recipe + 1 cup frozen pineapple chunks)

Instructions

For Freezing Bananas:

  • Peel bananas and cut them into 1 to 2" slices. Place them in a freezer bag in a single layer and freeze for up to 3 hours.

Food Processor Method:

  • Add frozen bananas to a food processor fitted with an S blade along with any flavorings you desire. Let it sit for 1 to 2 minutes for the bananas to soften slightly. Pulse until light and fluffy, stopping occasionally to wipe down the sides of the bowl. It's a perfect soft-serve texture to serve immediately or you can freeze it and serve it in scoops.

Blender Method:

  • Add frozen bananas to a high-speed blender along with any flavorings you desire. Let it sit for 1 to minutes for the bananas to soften slightly. Blend on low speed to break it down into chunks then gradually turn the speed up, moving gradually toward higher speed. If the blender stammers, stop and let the bananas sit for a minute or two until they soften a bit more. Then continue on low speed, gradually turning the speed up. It's a perfect soft-serve texture to serve immediately or you can freeze it and serve it in scoops.

Freezing:

  • To achieve a scoopable ice cream texture, spread the banana ice cream into an airtight container or a loaf pan. Cover and freeze for 2 to 3 hours. Let it sit on the counter for 10 minutes or so to soften, and then scoop with an ice cream scoop and serve with your favorite toppings.
  • You can store nice cream in the freezer for up to 2 months, but the flavors and textures are best when eaten within the first week or so.

Recommended Equipment

(The products above contain sponsored links to products we use and recommend)

Notes

Nutritional facts include macadamia nuts.
Nutrition Facts
Banana Nice Cream
Amount Per Serving
Calories 143 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g5%
Sodium 2mg0%
Potassium 545mg16%
Carbohydrates 37g12%
Fiber 4g16%
Sugar 20g22%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 96IU2%
Vitamin C 13mg16%
Calcium 11mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

This post was originally published in 2010 and was updated to include new photos, new text, and an updated recipe in 2020.

22 Responses to Nice Cream Recipe

  1. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMonet Reply

    Marly! I love this idea! I can only imagine how good this must taste. Maybe I could add a 1/2 cup of peanut butter before I process the bananas to add another layer of flavor. Thanks for sharing this love!

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      Bananas and peanut butter are one of my favorite blends of flavor. Sometimes if I have a day when I’m hungry in the morning, I eat that for breakfast. But I’m picky about my bananas. They can’t be too ripe. I actually like them right after they leave the green phase. I know, it’s weird.

  2. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyJennifer Reply

    It’s so wonderful that not only is this delicious, but it’s healthy too. I’m putting some banana pieces in the freezer right now!

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      I hope you like it!

  3. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyTatiana Reply

    That sounds entirely too cool – perhaps frozen grapes would be an appropriate topping also?

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      I love frozen grapes. Haven’t had them in awhile, so I’m going to pop some in the freezer now. Thanks for the inspiration!

  4. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyFOODESSA Reply

    Marly…a while ago…I too saw the same recipe and was saving my judgement until I got to try it. I was incredibly pleased with this creamy surprise. I’ve already made it twice. Each time it turned out differently due to the sweetness from the level of banana ripeness.
    I also added a few garnishes here and there depending on my mood.
    I’m glad you also got to try this and that more people will adopt this very simple recipe too.

    Your Westie ‘Coco’ is just absolutely adorable ;O)
    Flavourful wishes, Claudia

    P.S. Did you get my email on the other ice-cream?

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      Hi Claudia
      Garnishes are what make life (and food) so fun! Yes, Coco is just adorable. He seriously waits outside the kitchen so that when we’re done he can go in and scour the floor for any stray morsels. I think it’s kind of handy. He’s like our little dogba! Thanks for the reminder about your email. I just responded to you!

  5. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyGrace Reply

    Hey Marly

    I really love these pics and I can’t believe ice cream using one ingredient, genius! I can’t wait to try this, I’ll probably add chocolate, you know how much I love it or maybe some cherries, what do you think of cherry banana?

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      I think cherries and bananas are a great combination. You could probably add some coconut milk to that as well. No wait…it’s quickly becoming a 3 or 4 ingredient ice cream. Well, that’s the fun of it anyway. Very versatile!

  6. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyPatty Price Reply

    This looks great Marly, I always have bananas on my counter:)

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      Me too! In fact, I have some right now that are in desperate need of being incorporated into a recipe. I was thinking more along the lines of banana muffins. That just really sounds good for some reason.

  7. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyStella Reply

    This looks awesome, Marly! I bet reese’s peanut butter cups would be so good on this banana ice cream. No?
    Hey, I thought you were driving. How’d you sneak so many posts in so fast?

  8. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyReeni Reply

    I have been seeing this ice cream all over. It is genius, really, and I’m finally convinced that I need to try it! Good idea to jazz it up a little with some chocolate. Thanks for trying my sandwich! You’re so good at recreating things. I’m glad you liked the sauce.

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      The flavor of this ice cream is really intense. I think coupling it with something else is helpful. Your meatball sandwich looked so good…I just had to veganize it.

  9. Avatar thumbnail image for Marlyryan Reply

    My kids love ice cream, now I can give them ice cream that is also good for them, thanks for a great recipe. Hope Coco enjoyed his.

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      It is really good ice cream…especially with some chocolate sauce. Does that take away from the healthy part though? Nahh. Coco? Do you mean Dogba? Sometimes I have to tell him to quit licking the floor. What a strange thing to say to your dog. Usually the floor is clear of any morsels, but I often wonder if that means they’re covered in doggy saliva. Uhh, I need to go. I think I need to mop the floors….

  10. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyKathy Patalsky Reply

    Yum that looks super amazing. Your website is great — I added it to my Best Vegan Blogs list: http://kblog.lunchboxbunch.com/2010/07/best-vegan-blogs.html

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      Kathy – thanks so much. I’ve checked out your site many times so I’m honored to have my blog listed there!

  11. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyStella Reply

    I made this, and it was wonderful. Seemed like some type of dairy product was in there, but there’s nothing but banana So good. I think this is a trick everyone (vegan or not) should know about…Thanks Marly.

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      I agree. It’s hard to believe there’s not some dairy in there because it’s so dang creamy. But it’s not. I agree with you also that using bananas that are not quite so ripe would be better. I like my bananas a little on the greenish side anyway. It’s both a sweetness and a texture thing for me. Oh, now I’m getting hungry! 😉

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