Recipe courtesy of Melissa Gaman for Food Network Kitchen

Vanilla-Maple Ice Cream

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr 30 min (plus 8 hr chilling and freezing)
  • Active: 35 min
  • Yield: about 1 quart of vanilla-maple ice cream
The two main flavors in this custard-based ice cream balance each other beautifully, so neither overshadows the other. Make sure to use real maple syrup labeled Robust (formerly known as Grade B) as it has a stronger maple flavor than Grade A.



  1. Combine the heavy cream, milk, maple syrup and vanilla seeds and pod in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until steaming. Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks, sugar and salt in a medium bowl until smooth. Ladle about half of the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture while whisking. Then pour the egg mixture into the saucepan with the remaining milk mixture, whisking.
  2. Return the pan to medium-low heat and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, until the mixture thickens slightly and coats the back of the spoon, 5 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and pour through a fine-mesh sieve set over a heatproof bowl or large liquid measuring cup. Return the vanilla pod to the custard. Let cool, stirring occasionally, until the custard stops steaming. Refrigerate until very cold, at least 4 hours or overnight.
  3. Transfer the custard to an ice cream maker (remove the vanilla pod) and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to a container, cover and freeze at least 4 hours.

Cook’s Note

Plan ahead: Your ice cream maker bowl needs to be fully frozen to properly churn the custard. Put the bowl in the freezer at least 24 hours before you plan to use it. Use whole milk: To get rich, creamy ice cream, stick to full-fat dairy. Low-fat milk tends to produce an icy, gritty end product. Chill your custard: Before you churn the custard, refrigerate it until it’s super cold. Chilled custard makes for smaller ice crystals and smoother ice cream.