French Vanilla Ice Cream {And some exciting news!}

My French Vanilla Ice Cream is smooth and impossibly creamy! It is bursting with warm vanilla flavor and it is perfect by itself or as a compliment any dessert! (Yes, any)

A recipe for a classic French Vanilla Ice Cream that is bursting with vanilla flavor!

Plain vanilla. Who started the horrible rumor that vanilla ice cream is plain? Probably Hershey’s.

However, there is nothing plain about this rich, creamy French Vanilla Ice Cream! I used a whole vanilla bean plus more vanilla bean paste to amp up the vanilla flavor and it Shines!

A recipe for a classic French Vanilla Ice Cream that is bursting with vanilla flavor!

This is the kind of vanilla ice cream that is special enough for a celebration!

What are we celebrating?


Well I’ll let you in on a little secret that I have been holding inside until I’ve practically burst…


I’m going to CULINARY SCHOOL!!!


…in 15 days

…in New York City!

On January 20th I start the Pastry Arts Program at the International Culinary Institute in NYC, and I am so excited that I can barely sleep! I can’t wait to share this incredible experience with you and pass along all of the skills that I learn.

Thanksgiving 2014 - A Post about thankfulness and what I am particularly thankful for this year. Photo of Central Park New York City

I also happen to love New York City. It is seriously like a dream come true.

But enough about me! More French Vanilla Ice Cream!

A recipe for a classic French Vanilla Ice Cream that is bursting with vanilla flavor!

This ice cream is rich and creamy from the combination of heavy cream and 4 egg yolks. I wanted to use enough egg yolks to create a thick, rich custard base without having a hint of yolk flavor. This is less than the 5 yolks in my rich chocolate ice cream, but chocolate is a much more powerful flavor than vanilla and it could mask that yolky flavor.

A recipe for a classic French Vanilla Ice Cream that is bursting with vanilla flavor!

It is rich enough to enjoy by itself or with a little fruit, or it makes a magical pairing on apple or pear crisp, apple pie, pecan pie, or just plain with chocolate fudge sauce the way my Dad likes it.

A recipe for a classic French Vanilla Ice Cream that is bursting with vanilla flavor!

Or straight from the container which is how my husband likes it!!

No matter how you eat it, it is anything but plain!

French Vanilla Ice Cream {And some exciting news!}

Total Time: 7 hours

Yield: 1 Quart

My French Vanilla Ice Cream is smooth and impossibly creamy! It is bursting with warm vanilla flavor and it is perfect by itself or as a compliment any dessert!


  • 1 ½ cups whole milk*
  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 4 large egg yolks


  1. Make sure you have pre-frozen your ice cream maker’s mixing bowl or you will be sad!
  2. Place a fine sieve strainer over a medium bowl and place that medium bowl over a larger bowl filled with ice.
  3. Using a pairing knife, split the vanilla bean in half and scrap out all the seeds.
  4. In a heavy saucepot combine milk, cream, ½ cup sugar, vanilla bean seeds, vanilla bean pod and 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste. Heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, to dissolve the sugar and until steam appears. The milk should be hot but not boiling.
  5. Remove from heat, and in a medium bowl whisk together the egg yolks and the remaining ¼ cup sugar. While whisking constantly, slowly pour ½ cup of the hot cream mixture into the egg mixture. Repeat with another ½ cup of cream, then pour the egg mixture into the saucepot with the remaining cream. I like to whisk constantly while combining them as well. Think of it like an insurance policy against scrambled eggs!
  6. Return the pot to the stove and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture has thickened and will coat the back of a wooden spoon, about 20 minutes.
  7. Pour through the sieve into the bowl nestled in ice. Allow to cool, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and cool at least 3 hours or overnight if you want to make it ahead.
  8. Follow your ice cream maker’s manufacturer instructions to make the ice cream.
  9. Place in 1 quart container and cover in plastic wrap, making sure that the plastic is touching the ice cream to prevent ice crystals from forming. Refrigerate at least 3 hours but preferably overnight.


Adapted from The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook *You can also use 3 cups half and half in place of all the cream and milk.

Double to make the traditional 2 quarts.

There is more than one way to eat this French Vanilla Ice Cream!

Cardamom Pear Crisp

Cardamom Pear Crisp

Pecan Pie

Classic Pecan Pie

Maple Pecan Pie Bars

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Mixed Berry Crumbles

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Peach Cobbler

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Peach Pie

Old Fashioned Peach Pie

Mom’s Apple Crisp

Mom's Brown Sugar Apple Crisp | An easy, family recipe for the best apple crisp! Try it for dessert tonight!


  1. Nikki says

    I am thrilled for you.. I am so glad I found your site it is one of the best sources for some spectacular recipes and I am sure this experience will supply more.

  2. says

    Congrats, Lindsey! That is so exciting! Sounds like you will have such a great time and learn so many new things. NYC is my most favorite place ever, so I’m jealous that you will be living there! 🙂 And vanilla ice cream is definitely not boring, it’s actually one of my favorite flavors! I love your french vanilla version, sounds delish!
    Gayle @ Pumpkin ‘N Spice recently posted…Double Chocolate Chunk MuffinsMy Profile

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Chocolate lovers unite!! I’ll be in NYC for 6 months. I’m doing the intensive program so it is all day 5 days a week with no required internship.

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Ice cream makers are dangerous things…probably my most dangerous kitchen appliance! And was that a rhetorical question?! Of course I want to meet up and obviously I need to try the best donuts in NYC!

  3. says

    Gotta have that perfect ice cream to go with those perfect pies and crisps, right? You do in my world anyway. 🙂 I love all the vanilla flavor in here, and this is so pinned.

    Congrats on Culinary School!! I cannot wait to live vicariously through your pastry school adventures…and in NYC — how truly exciting. So happy for you — you are gonna knock it out of the park!
    marcie recently posted…Tropi-Kale Green SmoothieMy Profile

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Oh vanilla ice cream is not optional with pies and crisps! Thank you so much for the pin!

      Didn’t you just finish culinary school! I hope I will! Feel free to send any tips my way 🙂

  4. says

    I love all ice cream but vanilla always has my heart and I’m definitely craving a big ole bowl of this right now with some of your pear crisp 🙂 Yay, congrats on culinary school, Lindsey! That is such fantastic and exciting news! So so happy for you! You are going to kick some major butt there! I loved following Marcie along on hers and hopefully you share some of your adventures here with us 🙂

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Mmmmm pear crisp and vanilla ice cream! That would definitely hit the spot!

      Thanks so much, Kelly! I am so excited and I hope I can share stuff along the way!

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Haha! That it is, Kayle!

      I definitely need places to check out! I will absolutely be getting Max Brenners hot chocolate The DAY I arrive. And then waffles and dings or whatever the name of that place is that you rave about! xox

  5. says

    When I first saw the title of this post, I kind of thought you were going to share that you are expecting or something lol. Congrats and I look forward to the stories/knowledge you will be sharing. Obviously, you are already going to be steps ahead of most of the other students. I hope you have a way better experience than I did lol.

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      I *knew* you would! But then again you already knew I was going to culinary school…soo 🙂

      I hope it all goes well! Because you know I have to be the best! Any suggestions?

  6. says

    Congrats, Lindsey! So the cat is finally out of the bag…you’re going to become an even better pastry queen! You’re going to want to come home every day and re-make whatever you learned in class…so remind me to send you my address. 🙂 Also, I’m digging this french vanilla ice cream. As I told you way back when you posted the chocolate version, french vanilla is just plain better. That’s all there is to it. Pinning now!
    David @ Spiced recently posted…Rosemary and Garlic Grilled Red PotatoesMy Profile

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Thanks, David! Cat is out of the bag! We can speak of it freely…I mean it’s about darn time, right? I already have your address or have you forgotten the cookies already 😉

      Chocolate will forever have my heart but a good French vanilla comes in a close second. 🙂 And that is all I am going to give you. Thanks for the pin!

  7. Barbara says

    Congratulations to you! That is exciting news! Lucky you to be in NYC for an extended stay.
    Like your dad, I love chocolate sauce on vanilla but it has to be hot fudge.

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Thanks, Barbara! I am really, really excited and just a bit nervous. Okay a lot nervous! His has to be hot fudge too. No wimpy, runny chocolate sauce for us!

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Haha I know! But some times you just have to have ice cream, ya know? I always keep french vanilla in the freezer for any baked goods and also my husband likes to eat it all year round! 🙂

  8. says

    I am a huge fan of vanilla ice cream! Every time I have a scoop of good vanilla ice cream, I’m reminded how much I love it. Oh, and I am **SHOCKED** at your going to culinary school!! Hahaha! 😉 I am so proud of you Lindsey, but you already know that. I couldn’t be more excited for you – and I wish I was going there with you. You’re already an amazing cook, but wow… I can’t wait to see what you come up with! Pinned!
    Kristi @ Inspiration Kitchen recently posted…Rocky Mountain SalmonMy Profile

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Haha! I know! I always lean towards chocolate but then nothing compares to a good french vanilla! Thank you so much for all your love and support, Kristi! You really are the best! XOXOX {and thanks for the pin!}

  9. says

    Girl! I am over-the-moon ecstatic for you! Culinary school, to study pastry arts? What a dream come true! I look forward to hearing all about your journey and seeing (drooling over!) your fabulous creations. Your New Year is off to a phenomenal start! Meanwhile, this French Vanilla Ice Cream? Divine. French Vanilla is an all-time fave. So rich, creamy and satisfying. Of course, it’s even better with homemade salted caramel sauce on top! 😉 Thanks for sharing the exciting news, my friend! I am so proud of you, Linds! xo
    Stacy | Wicked Good Kitchen recently posted…Top 13 Recipes of 2014 ~ A Baker’s DozenMy Profile

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Thank you so much, Stacy! I am so beyond excited! It really is starting off with a bang, isn’t it?! XO

      And homemade salted vanilla caramel sauce is a must! 🙂

  10. Susan Raines says

    So excited for you! It will be absoultely wonderful! Cannot wait to see what’s in store!
    Love you, Aunt Susan
    PS, I have to admit vanilla is my favorite ice cream & it has to have chocolate sauce & peanuts! Must be a Farr thing! 🙂

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Thanks, Aunt Susan!! I am sooooooo excited! I can’t wait to share!
      ps- It definitely must be a Farr thing! Dad doesn’t use peanuts but probably because he hasn’t thought about it…he LOVES peanuts!

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      At least for 6 months, but I’ll be back!!!!! With cupcakes in hand just for you 🙂 There will be no beets in them though. #sorryimnotsorry 😉

  11. says

    A fantastic good looking vanilla ice-cream!
    Yeah for you going to culinary school,…pastry skills etc is a great idea! I went in my spare time to culinary school for 5 years & loved it too,…And to donthat in NY,..great for you! Xxx
    Sophie recently posted…Vegetarian cheesy spelt pasta!My Profile

  12. says

    Congratulations, Lindsey! I am so excited for you and a little jealous. I frequently sit in my office at work and day dream about going to culinary school. I’m sure it won’t be easy but it is a great opportunity for you. I can’t wait to follow along, but in the meantime I’ll take a big scoop of this vanilla ice cream!
    Ashley | Spoonful of Flavor recently posted…The Pearl Hotel – Rosemary BeachMy Profile

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      Thanks, Ashley! Me too – so you can imagine how excited I am!! I really hope to bring everyone along on the blog!

  13. says

    That is awesome Lindsey! Congratulations!! You must be so excited. Hope you find the time to blog because I really want to follow along and pretend I am in school with you 😉
    Love the vanilla ice cream!
    [email protected] recently posted…Old-Fashioned Egg Custard PieMy Profile

  14. says

    Congrats on Pastry School! I have taken a few classes at ICC (you know, the amateur ones, so probably nowhere near how amazing yours are going to be) there are it is an AWESOME place to study! Good luck!

    • AmericanCooking22 says

      How fun, Nora!! Thank you! I am very excited! I’ve taken some amateur cooking classes too and they were always very helpful and also a great date-night or girls night 🙂

  15. says


  1. […] the Pastry Arts Program at the International Culinary Center (ICC) in NYC! Check out her post, French Vanilla Ice Cream {and Some Exciting News!}, for the deets. There is no doubt that Lindsey will pass along her newly acquired pastry chef […]

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