This Copycat Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake is so decadent, you’ll never look at ice cream the same way again! With layers of chocolate ice cream, vanilla ice cream, chocolate fudge sauce, and chocolate cookie crumbles, it’s topped with sweet whipped cream and, of course, sprinkles!
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Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake is the ultimate Ice Cream dessert, and it’s perfect for summertime.
With a little bit of hands-on time, you can leave your freezer to do the hard work of turning these simple ingredients into a wonderfully presented frozen cake!
A DQ Ice Cream cake is perfect for any special occasion!
It’s versatile as you can use your favorite ice cream flavors or any kind of sandwich cookie you like.
You can even mix the colors or flavors of toppings to match your event.
Ice cream cakes are such a crowd-pleaser, and they’re the perfect birthday cake for someone who doesn’t like cake!
- Cookies: I’ve used chocolate sandwich cookies with frosting for this ice cream cake. You can swap them out for almost any flavor!
- Sauce: use a very thick chocolate fudge sauce to make the fudge crumble layer and to layer with the ice cream — if it is not thick enough it will leak out when you cut out! Be sure that when you scoop it from the jar, it piles on the spoon and does not run off.
- Ice Cream: use chocolate ice cream and vanilla ice cream that’s softened but not completely melted. Leave it at room temperature for a few minutes before using it.
- Heavy Cream: heavy whipping cream is the only cream we can use, since we are whipping it to frost our ice cream cake. You can also substitute for whipped topping (but why?!).
- Powdered Sugar: adds substance to the whipped cream and makes it sweet.
- Vanilla Extract
- Garnish: use rainbow sprinkles for an original DQ Ice Cream Cake look, or any kind or color of sprinkles to match your event!
How to Make Copycat DQ Ice Cream Cake
This recipe takes time but very little hands-on prep time! Full instructions are included in the recipe card below.
- Make base layer. Spread chocolate ice cream into the bottom of the pan and freeze until firm.
- Add sauce and crumbles. Spread the fudge sauce in an even layer, then add the cookie crumbles on top and freeze.
- Add the top layer. Add the top vanilla ice cream layer and freeze to set.
- Decorate. Frost with the whipped cream topping, and add garnishes as desired. Freeze before serving.
Copycat Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake FAQs
This copycat recipe is inspired by the original DQ Ice Cream Cake. It has a bottom layer of chocolate soft serve ice cream, a middle layer of chocolate fudge sauce with a crunchy cookie layer, and a top layer of soft vanilla ice cream, all coated in a vanilla whipped cream topping and lots of sprinkles!
Crush cookies in a food processor, or put them in a large Ziploc bag and bash them with a rolling pin into crumbs.
Keep this Ice Cream Cake in the freezer until ready to serve. Transport your ice cream cake in a cake carrier within an icebox or cooler with frozen ice blocks in it. I even recommend freezing your serving plate before transferring the cake to ensure it doesn’t melt!
Tips and Notes
- Layering. The key to making this ice cream cake is to be patient and allow each layer to freeze before adding the next one. This means you won’t want to have all of the ice creams softened before beginning the recipe. Ideally, plan to make this cake the day before serving it so you aren’t rushing it.
- Pan. Use a round cake pan lined with plastic wrap if you don’t have a springform pan.
- Freezer room. Make sure you have enough room in your freezer to continually store the cake in a level position. If it isn’t level, the layers won’t freeze evenly.
Copycat Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake Variations
- Ice Cream. You can use any flavor of ice cream you like! Use homemade ice cream or dairy-free ice cream to suit your needs.
- Cookies. Any flavor or brand of chocolate sandwich cookie with frosting in the middle will work. Oreo cookies are good, but you can use a store brand too.
- Whipped Cream. use Homemade Whipped Cream or store-bought whipped cream, or you can substitute it with whipped topping like Cool Whip or even a Buttercream Frosting. Full-fat heavy cream will give you the best results as you freeze it.
- Topping. Use any color or kind of sprinkles, or add candy like mini M&Ms, Reeses Pieces, chocolate chips, or chocolate curls to the top of the cake for a sweet finish.
More Delicious Frozen Dessert Recipes To Try
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Copycat Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake
- 20 chocolate sandwich cookies with frosting (roughly chopped)
- ½ cup thick chocolate fudge sauce (warmed)
Ice cream cake
- 6 cups chocolate ice cream (softened but not melted)
- 6 cups vanilla ice cream
- 1 cup thick chocolate fudge sauce* (or chocolate ganache – see note)
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- ⅓-½ cup powdered icing sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- sprinkles for garnish
- In a medium bowl, stir together the chopped cookies and warmed fudge sauce. Cover and set aside (you can also make these just before adding them to the cake)
Ice cream cake
- Line a 9 inch springform pan with parchment paper by pinching it in between the top and bottom piece (optional but helps with easy removal).
- Spread chocolate ice cream into the bottom of the pan and place in the freezer to freeze until firm, about 2 hours.
- Spread 1 cup chocolate fudge sauce (or see chocolate ganache instructions below) onto the chocolate ice cream and freeze until firm, about 1 hour.
- Spoon the chocolate crumbles over the hot fudge sauce in an even layer. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap and press down gently into the frozen sauce. Place in the freezer and allow the vanilla ice cream to soften for 20 minutes.
- Spread vanilla ice cream over top and freeze until firm — the time required will depend on how soft your ice cream is, but I recommend at least 4 hours or longer if your other layers were not completely frozen.
- In a medium bowl, beat cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla with an electric mixer on medium speed until stiff peaks form.
- Remove ice cream cake from the pan and place on a plate.
- Spread whipped cream over the sides and the top of the ice cream cake, adding a swirl around the edge if desired. Add sprinkles if using.
- Freeze until ready to serve.
- chocolate fudge sauce*: you will need a very thick chocolate fudge sauce for this recipe or it will run out when you cut it. Look for a chocolate sauce that piles up on a spoon when you scoop it — it should not immediately run off. If you cannot find a sauce this thick, opt for the chocolate ganache recipe below instead.
- ice cream: you can use any flavor of ice cream you like!
- whipped cream: you can substitute with whipped topping if you prefer
- layering: the key to making this ice cream cake is to be patient and allow each layer to freeze before adding the next one. This means you won’t want to have all of the ice cream softened before beginning the recipe. Ideally, plan to make this cake the day before serving it so you aren’t rushing.
- 125 grams chopped chocolate (1 scant cup)
- ½ cup heavy cream
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