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Pumpkin Ice Cream Popsicles

A fun alternative to a seasonal holiday treat.

Coffee Toffee Ice Cream

Who says pumpkin is just for pie? This fall ice cream has all the flavor of a pumpkin pie but frozen on a stick. The custard base, similar to a traditional pumpkin pie, is made with fresh roasted pumpkin, eggs, milk, cream, sugar, and spices. Dipped in white chocolate and bedecked with roasted pepitas, these popsicles will be as popular with the adults as with the kids!

Equipment: wet measuring cup; dry measuring cup; medium saucepan; mesh strainer; whisk; wooden spoon; rubber spatula; cheesecloth; medium mixing bowl; ice cream machine; popsicle molds and sticks; rimmed sheet pan

Ingredients: 1½ cups whole milk

1 cup heavy cream

1/3 cup granulated sugar

teaspoon salt

5 large egg yolks

¾ cup fresh roasted pumpkin puree

¼ cup packed dark brown sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 cup white chocolate chips ½ cup roasted pepitas

"You can use canned pumpkin flesh if you don't want to roast and puree your own."

1. In a medium saucepan, combine the whole milk, heavy cream, granulated sugar, and salt. Set heat to medium-high and simmer until the sugar completely dissolves, approximately 3-4 minutes.

2. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside. Whisk the egg yolks in a bowl, and then gently whisk about a quarter of the hot cream into the yolks to temper them, stirring constantly for about 30 seconds. Whisk the yolk mixture back into the pot with the remaining cream mixture. Return the pan to medium-low heat and gently cook until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon or spatula, stirring constantly.

3. Strain the custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, pressing with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon to make sure that you do not leave any liquid behind. Stir in the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon.

4. Cool the strained mixture to room temperature, then cover and chill overnight.

5. Churn the chilled pumpkin custard in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions (generally about 20 minutes).

6. Pour the mixture into popsicle molds. Cover with plastic wrap and insert popsicle sticks. Freeze for 4 or more hours.

7. Melt white chocolate in a bowl in the microwave or in a double boiler. Remove the popsicles from the mold, one at a time, and dip in the chocolate. Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds and set on a sheet pan to return to the freezer. Repeat until all the popsicles have been dipped. Store in an airtight container for up to two weeks.

Makes 8 popsicles.

Seize the Opportunity

ILOC tip: if the white chocolate seizes at some point as it cools and becomes impossible to dip, all is not lost. Stir in some pepitas and work the chocolate and seeds like a dough on the cutting board. Cut into squares and chill. You've just made a fun and easy candy to enjoy... perfect as a topping to a scoop of pumpkin ice cream!
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