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Rocky Road Ice Cream Recipe

Course: Dessert
Total Time: Under 4 Hours
Skill Level: Easy
Cost: Inexpensive
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 Rocky Road Ice Cream

Photo by: Joseph De Leo

Rocky Road Ice Cream comes in all different guises though always composed of chocolate (sometimes the ice cream and sometimes pieces), nuts, sometimes coconut and always and most notably marshmallows.

Although marshmallows are the most popular campfire treats, few people actually know what they are. Made by mixing corn syrup, powdered sugar, egg whites and unflavored gelatin, this mixture is then left to “harden” for about a day and then, traditionally, cut into bite-sized cubes. Before the invention of gelatin, an extract from the root of the marshmallow plant was used as a thickening agent. Hence the name. Today, marshmallows are known for their key role in S’Mores as well as a popular topping for hot chocolate. For S’More Ice Cream: replace the pecans and coconut with 4 chopped graham crackers.

Yield: Makes 1½ to 2 pints

  • 1½ cups whole milk
  • 1½ cups heavy cream
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 4 large egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • ½ cup mini marshmallows, chopped if desired
  • ½ cup chopped toasted pecans, walnuts or almonds
  • ½ cup chopped chocolate chips
  • ½ cup shredded sweetened coconut (optional)


Place the milk, cream and ¼ cup of the sugar in a small pan and cook over low heat, whisking from time to time, until it is warm, about 175°F.

Place the egg yolks, ¼ cup of the sugar, the vanilla extract and salt in a small metal bowl and whisk until completely mixed.

Add ¼ cup of the warm milk mixture to the eggs, whisking all the while.

Continue adding milk to the eggs, ¼ cup at a time, until you have added about 1½ cups.

Slowly, whisking all the while, return the now milk and egg mixture to the remaining milk mixture in the pan and continue cooking until it just begins to thicken or reaches about 185°F.

Do not allow the mixture to boil.

Pour through a medium fine strainer into a metal bowl, discard the solids and set aside until it reaches room temperature.

Cover and refrigerate until it reaches 40°F, about 3 hours.  Transfer to an ice cream maker and proceed according to the manufacturer's instructions.

When the ice cream is just beginning to come together but has not hardened completely, add the marshmallows, pecans, chocoloate chips, and coconut, if desired, and process for about 5 more minutes.

© 2008 Sally Sampson

Nutrients per serving (% daily value)

Nutritional information is based on 6 servings.

493kcal (25%)
148mg (15%)
1mg (1%)
316mcg RAE (11%)
227mg (76%)
96mg (4%)
21g (103%)
37g (57%)
1mg (7%)

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