This no-churn peanut butter cup ice cream takes the classic and much-beloved combination of peanut butter and chocolate to the next level by turning it into a dreamy, creamy frozen dessert. No eggs and no mixer required.
Peanut butter plus chocolate is a match made in culinary paradise. The combination first became popular in the late 1920s. From there, the world’s obsession began to grow and today we have hundreds of mouth-watering peanut butter and chocolate recipes to choose from.
This loaded no-churn peanut butter cup ice cream begins with a perfectly creamy peanut butter ice cream base. Loads of crushed peanut butter cups are added to the base, rendering it quite possibly a peanut butter lover’s dream come true.
I chose Adams® creamy peanut butter (no sugar added—this is simply crushed peanuts and salt) plus mini Reese’s® peanut butter cups for this recipe, but you can add in your favorite brands to create this glorious peanut butter plus chocolate flavor.–Heather Templeton
No-Churn Peanut Butter Cup Ice Cream FAQs
Can I add another candy to this ice cream?
Absolutely. There are so many options. We’re thinking chopped-up Snickers, Take-Fives, Reese’s Pieces, peanut or plain M&Ms, chocolate-covered pretzels, Hershey bars, Milky Ways… or what about cookies? Nutter Butters, homemade peanut butter cookies, or those Girl Scout Tag-a-Longs or Do-Si-Dos! Add a chocolate swirl, chocolate ganache, or white chocolate peanut butter cups. Let us know what you dream up!
Can I use an ice cream machine for this recipe?
You don’t have to, but yes, you sure can. One of our testers did this with great success.
Complete step 1 of the instructions, and skip step 2. Yep. Skip it. Go right to step 3, chop up your peanut butter cups, and skip step 5. Add your liquid right to the ice cream machine and start freezing it. Add your chopped peanut butter cups about halfway through the freezing process, letting the machine mix them in as it stirs.
No-Churn Peanut Butter Cup Ice Cream
- One (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup creamy natural peanut butter
- 1/2 cup half-and-half
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 30 mini peanut butter cups
- In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla extract, peanut butter, and half-and-half, until the mixture is smooth.
- Using a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or a hand mixer, whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form, 2 to 4 minutes.
☞TESTER TIP: To speed up the whipping of the cream, chill your bowl and whisk attachment.
- Fold the sweetened condensed milk mixture into the cream that has been whipped. This is your ice cream base. You will want this to be as smooth as possible and lump free.
- Unwrap the mini peanut butter cups. Place them in a large plastic bag and seal it. Gently roll a rolling pin over the peanut butter cups to crush them into chunks, being careful as they are a softer candy. Alternatively, you can crush them by hand, roughly breaking them into four pieces per cup. For larger chunks of peanut butter cups, simply crush them less. For smaller chunks of peanut butter cups, crush them more.
- Place the crushed peanut butter cups into the ice cream base and stir to combine, ensuring that there is an even distribution of cups throughout the ice cream batter.
- Pour the ice cream into an 8-by-8-inch (20-by-20-cm) baking pan (or a freezer-safe container of about the same size), and use a spatula to spread the ice cream evenly throughout the pan.
- Freeze the ice cream uncovered until it is firm, 3 to 5 hours. Once frozen, cover with foil or plastic wrap and store in the freezer for up to 3 weeks.
No-Churn Fudgy Peanut Butter Cup VariationAdd a fudge swirl to up the decadence-ante on this one. Simply swirl in 1/2 cup (168 g) of your favorite store-bought fudge and a pinch of salt before freezing as instructed
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
This no-churn peanut butter cup ice cream is a fun and easy recipe for making ice cream, no ice cream machine needed, and short prep time. No shortcuts on flavor! It just takes two mixing bowls.
The recipe calls for wrapped mini peanut butter cups. We purchased mini cups that were not individually wrapped, so we doubled the number of mini cups. Since there will be some peanut butter cups left from your package, you can also add more to the top of the finished mixture before you begin the freezing process.
It was firm after four hours, but we liked the texture after freezing overnight. A fun recipe to make with kids or kids at heart, just make sure they don’t eat all the yummy peanut butter cups before the ice cream mixture is assembled. Or just purchase two bags of mini peanut butter cups.
We had just polished off the last of the blueberry cheesecake ice cream I made last weekend, so this peanut butter cup ice cream seemed like the perfect flavor — can’t go wrong with peanut butter and chocolate, after all!
I used Seven Farms Organic Peanut Butter and Justin’s dark chocolate mini peanut butter cups (about 18 – which I cut in half). I also used my ice cream maker rather than rely on the no-churn version, as written in the recipe.
After 25 minutes in the machine, the ice cream was of soft serve consistency, which was already lovely, then I layered the peanut butter cup pieces in between scoops of the ice cream, smoothing the layers afterwards. It then went into the freezer.
This makes about a quart, and the ice cream itself was wonderful and creamy on its own with a pronounced peanut butter flavor. Loved the combo of smooth and chunky textures and flavors of dark chocolate-peanut butter pieces. Would make this again but would use fewer peanut butter cups, since (for me) too many detract from the flavorful ice cream itself.
I never knew that you could make ice cream with a hand mixer until now! I always thought you had to have a fancy ice cream maker however not the case with this recipe. With under 15 minutes of prep and a few hours in the freezer, you end up with a luxurious, velvety not overly sweet peanut butter ice cream that is to die for! This is a keeper for me.
This is not quite ice cream, not quite frozen custard, somewhere between the two, but equally delicious. If you love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (and who doesn’t?), this no-churn peanut butter cup ice cream is the dessert for you. It’s simple, it’s easy, it’s wonderful.
The most time-consuming part of this recipe – aside from waiting for it to freeze – is unwrapping the 30 Miniature Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. I used the milk chocolate ones but think next time I will try the dark chocolate ones. The taste of the chocolate will be a bit more pronounced. This dessert can be made the day before, then just pop it out of the freezer and dish it out.
Some nice additions would be some hot fudge sauce, some melted peanut butter, or some crumbled Reese’s pieces dropped on top. Yum!
A machine-less ice cream recipe? Oh my stars and garters! I was so excited to try this, and even better, I was on vacation with six ice cream hounds, so I wouldn’t even have to eat the whole batch myself. I loved it, and it was devoured by my fellow vacationers. I look forward to making it again and again.
The only change I would make would be to add a pinch of salt. This may be because my batch was likely denser than intended, or because I added the fudge, but I would have welcomed just a tiny bit more salt in there.
I give a hearty yes-vote to the fudge variation. In these trying times, a fudge swirl isn’t something I’d leave out.
Seriously. After “yes”, my favourite words are peanut butter, chocolate, and ice cream. So I couldn’t wait to make this for a tiny barbecue that I attended on Canada Day.
Everyone thought it tasted terrific. And when I explained how easy it was to make, they liked it even more. Between six of us, it very nearly disappeared. Even the person who isn’t a fan of peanut butter thought it was pretty darn good.
My quibble is that it tastes more like a “frozen dessert” than actual ice cream. You might think that I’m just being a food snob, and while I just might be, hear me out.
The combination of condensed milk and whipped cream do give you a deliciously creamy base but the absence of eggs and churning takes it down a notch. But…add in some top-notch natural peanut butter (I love Adam’s Dark Roast PB in a way that borders on the scandalous) and little mini chocolate cups and you do have a really terrific summer dessert.
I found that it was a little too sweet and not peanut butter flavoured enough. I will absolutely play around with the ratios (more whipped cream and peanut butter and even a dash of salt).
My friends loved it, and I would absolutely make this again, even without modifications. It’s still incredibly tasty and satisfying, and everyone was pretty pleased with it.
For people without an ice cream machine this no-churn peanut butter cup ice cream is a great option. It’s also a bonus that it firms up quickly so you could make this late morning and be able to serve it up that evening for dessert.
I swirled fudge sauce through before freezing thinking it would balance the peanut butter and it did. It really does taste like a peanut butter cup. Once frozen, I scooped it into a plastic container which helped to distribute the peanut butter cups that mostly sank to the bottom of the pan during freezing.
This homemade ice cream comes together easily and tastes great. The peanut butter ice cream (without PB cup bits) is delicious on its own. It’s on the sweet side but I think that’s ok. The peanut butter cups really add something. For an indulgent touch, I would make a ganache and dribble on top of a serving.
Originally published August 10, 2022