Food. Life. Travel

Chocolate Pistachio Ice Cream: Recipe

chocolate pistachio ice cream

Doesn’t this chocolate pistachio ice cream look divine? I absolutely love ice cream. I am an addict. A fanatic. A connoisseur.  I have a deep, deep, deep appreciation for the creamy goodness of ice cream. In Calgary, we have a few artisanal ice cream shops that satisfy my addiction and offer great flavours. But sometimes you have those days where you don’t want to spend $7.00 on one scoop. Instead you’d prefer to have a whole pint of ice cream ready at your beck and call.

I started making ice cream a few years back. It stemmed from a place of always wanting to have ice cream available and wondering if I could actually make it. There is nothing more satisfying than making ice cream all by yourself. You will no doubt impress your family and friends with your culinary expertise. More importantly, you will always have ice cream around for those days when you need it most!

The most important tool you need to make ice cream is an ice cream maker. I use this Cuisinart Ice Cream & Sorbet Maker.  Now there are plenty of “no-churn” ice cream recipes that use evaporated milk in place of cream or whole milk. While there is nothing wrong with “no-churn” (in fact it is faster to make) it doesn’t yield that same creamy goodness. Like I said I am a real tough critic when it comes to ice cream. I can’t help it, ice cream is practically the love of my life 😉

Apparently, we can credit the origins of pistachio ice cream to a man named James W. Parkinson. He invented the dish in the 1940s (I got this from the internet so it could be wrong). My mother, on the other hand, swears that pistachio ice cream is Persian in origin. In fact, you will find many Arabian, Indian and Central Asian dishes that incorporate the use of pistachios in their dessert!

The recipe I have today is actually a pistachio chocolate ice cream. My mom wanted that flavour despite me telling her that it is essentially spumoni minus the vanilla/strawberry. I will forewarn you – the ice cream is delicious but it is a slight pain in the butt to make! But in the end, it is all worth it 🙂


Chocolate Pistachio Ice Cream

Chocolate Pistachio Ice Cream

Similar to the Neapolitan ice cream but better. Chocolate pistachio ice cream has a deep nutty flavour with a hint of chocolate. 

Prep Time 5 hours
Total Time 5 hours
Servings 2 Quarts


  • 1 cup shelled pistachios (unsalted)*
  • 3/4 cup cane sugar (set aside an extra 1 tbsp for the chocolate ice cream)
  • 2 cups whole milk (set aside an extra 2 tbsp for the chocolate ice cream)
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 + 1/4 cup heavy cream (35%)
  • 3 tbsp chopped pistachios
  • 1/4 chopped dark chocolate
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 3 drops green food colouring (gel food colouring is good too)


  1. Finely grind 1 cup pistachios and 1/4 cup sugar in food processor/spice grinder. Make sure that it is a powder substance and not mushy like a butter – this should only take a few seconds.

  2. Bring milk,  1/2 cup of cream and ground pistachio mixture to boil in a heavy bottom saucepan. You will start to see steam coming from the top and it will look thick. Stir occasionally so nothing sticks to the bottom

  3. Remove from heat and add the food colouring to get the desired colour you want. Let mixture rest for 15 - 20 minutes so that the flavour can develop.

  4. In the meantime, we will start to prepare our chocolate ice cream. Bring 1/4 cup cream, 2 tbsp of whole milk, 1 tbsp of cocoa powder, 1 tbsp sugar to boil. Once it comes to a boil whisk 1 egg yolk and let boil for 2 minutes or until the egg is mixed and the mixture looks thick. Remove from heat and add 1/2 tsp vanilla essence and set aside in a small bowl.

  5. Bring back pistachio mixture onto low heat. In a small bowl whisk 3 egg yolk and remaining 1/2 cup sugar. Gradually whisk into pistachio mixture.

  6. Cook custard over low heat until custard thickens and coats the back of your spoon / spatula. This takes about 10-15 minutes (do not boil) Be sure to stir often. Remove from heat.

  7. Place remaining 1 /2 cup of cream and 1 tsp of almond extract into a large bowl. Place a fine-meshed sieve on top.

  8. Strain pistachio custard mixture into the large bowl. If you find the green colour is diluted you can add more food colouring. Chill both mixtures until cold, in the freezer for 3 hours or until thoroughly chilled. Churn immediately. If you are not churning that day, place mixtures in fridge overnight.

  9. Once mixtures are completely cold you can churn it according to the manufacturer's instruction. About half way through I start to slowly add the chocolate mixture in (so that it will be mixed).

  10. Towards the last few minutes of churning, add the chopped pistachios and dark chocolate.

  11. Transfer to freezer safe container and freeze till ready to serve.

Recipe Notes

*1 cup of pistachios yields quite a deep flavour. If you are not a fan of that, reduce the amount to 1/2 a cup of pistachios instead. 


Are you going to give this recipe a try? It definitely is time-consuming but totally worth it in the end. If you have any questions leave a comment down below!

So go ahead and scoop your ice cream into a cone and enjoy 🙂

Until next time!




chocolate pistachio ice cream cone

chocolate pistachio ice cream in bowl


2 comments so far.

2 responses to “Chocolate Pistachio Ice Cream: Recipe”

  1. Mama says:

    I can vouch that rhis was absolutely divine and heaven on heels 👍🏻

  2. Mama says:

    I can vouch that this was absolutely divine and heaven on heels 👍🏻

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