Mint Julep Ice Cream

Mint Julep Ice Cream

The weather is sunny, warm, and begging for the first ice cream recipe to get us ready for Summer and The Kentucky Derby! So, ritzy chefs, it’s time for Mint Julep Ice Cream!

The Kentucky Derby is rounding the corner, and while your mind may be on the horses and elaborate hats, my mind is always on food & drinks! And since my last post was my version of Derby Day Pie (Chocolate Pecan Bars), I got to thinking about the official drink as well. As you can see, I got excited about all this!

Mint Julep Ice Cream Recipe

The Mint Julep

The mint julep has been the official drink of the Kentucky Derby since 1938. Over 100,000 of these drinks are served each year during the Derby. That’s pretty incredible, especially considering the mint julep only consists of four ingredients.

The first, and most important, is bourbon! Bourbon is free flowing in Kentucky, after all! The rest of the ingredients are: simple syrup, fresh mint leaves, and crushed ice.

mint julep drink

To learn more about The 2018 Kentucky Derby and the Mint Julep, check out the official site here, 2018 Kentucky Derby.

A typical Mint Julep costs about $11, but then it gets even wilder, going up in price with limited drinks selling for $1000 and up to $2500! For one drink! Must be some drink, right? These luxury drinks are served in gold-plated cups with gold-plated straws, and there’s a charitable donation involved.

Since I had a couple of drink recipes and videos done prior to this post, and I’ll have a few more Summer sippers coming, I decided to take the mint julep and make it into mint julep ice cream! And hey, I’m happy to add some gold flakes and charge you a couple thousand a scoop if you guys want me to start a Derby Day ice cream stand for this! For now, let’s get churning!

The Steeping

So the process of making this mint julep ice cream is a time commitment that is well worth it in the end. There is just nothing like creamy, fresh, homemade ice cream. And boozy ice cream seems a great way to start off!

The first step for the mint julep ice cream is to infuse all that fresh mint flavor in.

To do this, you will get a large saucepan heating your milk and heavy cream. Get a cup full of mint leaves muddled and bruised. This will release the essential oils of the mint and get it ready to transfer all that flavor and freshness into your cream. Then, add the leaves. Once the mixture comes to a low boil, remove from the heat and cover. Do not even look at it for at least 2 hours!

After a couple of hours, the mixture will have tiny dots of that delicious mint oil, and be warmer in color. The scent of mint will waft up and you’ll be excited to move on to the next step!

Steep mint leaves in cream

The Base

Now you will strain your mixture into a bowl, pushing your mint leaves against the strainer to get all that flavor, and tiny bits of dotted mint pieces. Then clean your strainer and set aside for future use.

Return the cream mixture to the saucepan and add sugar.  Heat on medium. Mix. Then, in a separate bowl, whisk together your egg yolks.

Once your stove top mixture comes to a very low boil, lower the heat down to medium-low and take a cup full of that hot cream mixture. Then carefully temper in your hot cream mixture with your eggs. Take a look at the accompanying video demonstration for this post to watch how to temper eggs and for the whole ice cream making process. Link here – VIDEO STEP-BY-STEP DEMONSTRATION!

Then, you will get this mixture thickened by allowing it to cook for about 7 minutes. Stir it constantly. If you have a gas stove, or a stove that heats very quickly, then you may be one of the lucky ones who get to shave off half of this time! I, on my old electric stove, will still be stirring away for about 7 minutes!

As noted in my video, if your mixture begins to curdle, don’t freak out! Instead, remove it from the heat and pulse it on low in a blender or Cuisinart, or with your immersion blender. That may revive it! This happens to everyone at some point, even Ritzy Chefs like us! This can happen if your heat was too high.

As you may have noticed, this process is much like making the vanilla custard from my Banana Split Trifle. The base of this ice cream is much like a frozen custard, so that’s why!

Once your mixture has thickened remove from the heat. Then strain it again into a big bowl. Look at that! This was the point I was ready to drink it!

making homemade ice cream

Bourbon time! This is the step where you will add your bourbon and vanilla extract. Then, you need to cover this up and let it refrigerate overnight, or at least 6 hours. So if you do happen to start this process in the morning, you would definitely have it in time for evening dessert.

Churn, Baby, Churn!

I was so excited when morning came that I began churning this Mint Julep Ice Cream first thing! I used the KitchenAid ice cream attachment for this final stage. It only took 30 minutes before I had the perfect soft serve ice cream!

Let’s chat about this ice cream for a second. It is refreshing, cool, creamy, with a tang of mint and that velvety texture. And even after the bite is gone, the sassy bourbon lingers. It’s one a hell of an ice cream!

mint julep ice cream

If you prefer firmer ice cream, just put the ice cream into an airtight container and let it firm up for a few hours.

homemade bourbon mint ice cream

Want to know one of the best results of this ice cream? Putting a scoop on top of my Chocolate Pecan Bars!

KitchenAid Ice Cream Attachment Tips

If you are using your KitchenAid ice cream making attachment for this recipe, here are some useful tips.

First, make sure that you freeze your attachment for 15 hours prior to using it.

Second, when you are ready to use it, you will want to put the ice cream in immediately before it starts to thaw out.

Third, have it set to the stir attachment, and let it begin stirring prior to pouring in  your ice cream. If you don’t, the ice cream will freeze upon contact with the sides.

Fourth, once the ice cream is ready, make sure to use a wooden or silicon spoon to scoop out all of that ice cream. A metal utensil will ruin this ice cream maker!

Fifth, have an airtight container ready to store any ice cream. It cannot be stored in the attachment!

Finally, I have heard that this ice cream attachment can leak once it is hand washed and defrosted. I have not had this happen, probably because after washing it, I put it back into the freezer. The freezer is it’s home!

Enjoy The Kentucky Derby and this refreshing Mint Julep Ice Cream! And if you need assistance, make sure to watch the video tutorial on my YouTube Channel. Or email me!

Mint Julep Ice Cream Recipe

Mint Julep Ice Cream

Mint Julep Ice Cream is the ice cream version of the official drink of the Kentucky Bourbon, The Mint Julep! It is refreshing, cool, creamy, with a tang of mint and that velvety texture. And even after the bite is gone, the sassy bourbon lingers. It's one hell of an ice cream!


  • 1 3/4 cups heavy cream plus 1/8 cup
  • 1 3/4 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup fresh mint leaves muddled
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4-6 tablespoons Kentucky Bourbon


  1. In a large saucepan, steep cream, milk, and mint leaves. Do this by bringing milk and cream to a low boil. Then add in mint. Then remove from heat and cover for 2 hours. Let this cool down to room temp.

    Then, strain out all of the mint.

    Return the milk mixture to saucepan. Add sugar. Bring to simmer.

    Whisk egg yolks in a bowl. Remove about 1 cup of the hot milk and temper into eggs. Then add this whole mixture back into saucepan.

    Let this cook and thicken for about 5-7 minutes.

    Remove from heat. Strain again into a clean bowl.

    Add vanilla and bourbon.

    Cover and let chill overnight. Press plastic wrap against the surface to prevent a skin from forming.

    Then, make ice cream according to your ice cream maker!


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