Rocky Road Ice Cream

Total Time 4 hrs 15 mins
Servings 8 servings

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This Rocky Road Ice Cream is rich, creamy, and delicious. It’s made up of a chocolate-y base loaded with mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, and chopped walnuts or almonds.

glass loaf pan with rocky road ice cream and two scoops of ice cream.
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Table of Contents
  1. Ingredients Needed:
  2. How to Make Rocky Road Ice Cream
  3. Rocky Road Ice Cream FAQs
  4. Tips and Notes
  5. More Ice Cream Recipes
  6. Rocky Road Ice Cream Recipe

I know a lot of us think or have thought before that making homemade ice cream is a difficult, labor intensive, and easy to mess up task. Well, this Rocky Road Ice Cream recipe is here to prove that theory wrong!

This recipe is based on my homemade Vanilla Ice Cream — which is a cooked, frozen custard. You can also follow this Easy Homemade Ice Cream recipe for a no cook version if you prefer!

This recipe takes a quick 15 minutes to prep, then all that’s left to do is chill and churn the ice cream until it’s frozen. The result is a rich chocolate ice cream base loaded up with walnuts, chocolate chips, and mini marshmallows.

The homemade version of this classic ice cream flavor will not disappoint!

close up image of scoop of rocky road ice cream in pan.

Serve this ice cream as-is or make it into Ice Cream Sandwiches!

Ingredients Needed:

ingredients needed for rocky road ice cream on white background.
  • Heavy Whipping Cream and Whole Milk: makes up a rich and creamy base for the ice cream.
  • Granulated Sugar: use more or less according to your tastes.
  • Egg Yolks: stabilizes the ice cream so it’s silkier, creamier, and lasts longer in the freezer.
  • Cocoa Powder: use unsweetened cocoa powder to give the ice cream its chocolate flavor.
  • Vanilla Extract: adds flavor depth and a touch of sweetness.
  • Mix-ins: we’re adding in mini marshmallows, mini chocolate chips, and walnuts or almonds for those classic Rocky Road flavors and textures.

How to Make Rocky Road Ice Cream

This homemade Rocky Road Ice Cream recipe could not be easier. Just 15 minutes to prep!

  1. Cook the base: In a saucepan, whisk together cream, milk, sugar, egg yolks, and cocoa until smooth. Set the pan over medium heat and cook until thickened. Stir in vanilla.
  2. Chill: Transfer the mixture to a large measuring cup or bowl and gently press a piece of plastic wrap over the top. Chill in the fridge until cold.
  3. Churn: Transfer the chilled mixture into a cold ice cream maker bowl and churn for 20 minutes. In the last 5 minutes, add in the mix-ins or stir in by hand.
  4. Freeze: Pour the ice cream into a glass loaf pan or baking dish and freeze until firm.

Rocky Road Ice Cream FAQs

What is Rocky Road Ice Cream?

Rocky Road Ice Cream is made up of a chocolate ice cream base loaded up with chopped nuts, marshmallows, and chocolate chips.

Why do they call it Rocky Road Ice Cream?

Supposedly, it was invented during the great depression when a man named William Dreyer decided to cut pieces of marshmallow and walnut up with scissors to mix into chocolate ice cream. It was named Rocky Road to refer to the time in which it was invented as something to cheer people up!

What kind of nuts are used in Rocky Road Ice Cream?

Traditional Rocky Road is made with chopped almonds. However, you can use any other type of nut you prefer—or a combination of a couple. Walnuts, peanuts, pecans, chopped hazelnuts, or chopped macadamia nuts are all delicious options.

How to store:

Homemade ice cream will keep in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.

bowl with three scoops of rocky road ice cream with marshmallows.

Tips and Notes

  • Freeze the bowl. Before you churn the ice cream, place the bowl in the freezer to chill. The cold bowl creates a better texture.
  • Use full fat ingredients. The higher the fat content, the creamier the ice cream.
  • When you cover with plastic wrap, make sure it’s just touching the surface of the ice cream base. This helps prevent a skin from forming.
  • You can speed up the refrigeration process by setting the ice cream base in the freezer instead. If you do this, be sure to stir every 10 minutes to keep the mixture smooth and creamy.
  • Before serving, let the ice cream sit for 5-10 minutes. This allows it to soften just a bit for a creamier consistency.
  • For an even richer ice cream, use 2 cups of cream and 1 cup of milk.

More Ice Cream Recipes

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Rocky Road Ice Cream

5 from 4 votes
This Rocky Road Ice Cream is rich, creamy, and delicious. It's made up of a rich, chocolate-y base loaded with mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, and chopped walnuts or almonds.
Cook Time 15 mins
Churning and Freezing 4 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs 15 mins
Cuisine American
Course Dessert
Servings 8 servings
Calories 415cal

Ingredients

  • cups heavy whipping cream
  • cups whole milk
  • 1 cup granulated sugar use more or less according to your tastes
  • 4 egg yolks
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup mini marshmallows
  • ½ cup mini chocolate chips
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts or almonds

Instructions

  • Freeze ice cream maker bowl according to instructions.
  • Whisk together cream, milk, sugar, egg yolks, and cocoa in a large saucepan until smooth.
  • Place the pan on medium heat, and cook and whisk constantly until thickened. It will be noticeably thickened, but not thick like pudding. Stir in vanilla. Taste and adjust sweetness as desired.
  • Pour into a large glass measuring cup or bowl and press a piece of plastic wrap to the surface to keep a skin from forming.
  • Refrigerate until completely cold (you can speed this up by placing it in the freezer and stirring every 10 minutes).
  • Place in the ice cream maker and churn for 20 minutes or until a soft serve consistency. Add the marshmallows, chocolate chips and nuts in the last 5 minutes or churning or stir in by hand.
  • Pour into a glass loaf pan or baking dish and freeze until firm, about 4-6 hours.
  • I recommend letting sit at room temperature for 5-10 minutes before serving. Cover leftovers with plastic wrap and freeze up to 3 months.

Notes

*For a richer ice cream, you can use 2 cups of cream and 1 cup of milk.
Leftovers:
Homemade ice cream will last in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Tips:
  • Use full fat ingredients. The higher the fat content, the creamier the ice cream.
  • You can speed up the refrigeration process by setting the ice cream base in the freezer instead. If you do this, be sure to stir every 10 minutes to keep the mixture smooth and creamy.
  • Before serving, let the ice cream sit for 5-10 minutes. This allows it to soften just a bit for a creamier consistency.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 415cal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 155mg | Sodium: 47mg | Potassium: 197mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 33g | Vitamin A: 887IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 122mg | Iron: 1mg
Keywords rocky road ice cream

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Meet Ashley

My name is Ashley Fehr and I love creating easy meals my family loves. I also like to do things my way, which means improvising and breaking the rules when necessary. Here you will find creative twists on old favorites and some of my favorite family recipes, passed down from generations!

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