Protein Ice Cream

DF GF V VG

This healthy protein ice cream uses frozen bananas as the base and can easily be made into two different flavors – chocolate and/or vanilla. It’s vegan and you’ll love how creamy and delicious it is!

If you’re someone who loves having a protein shake or protein bar for breakfast, have you ever thought about swapping that with ice cream? Ice cream for breakfast?! You heard that right!

Before you judge me for adding protein to ice cream… promise me you’ll try this recipe! It’s so creamy and delicious, no one will ever know that it’s a healthy recipe.

And yes, it can be served for breakfast or dessert!!

Large bowl of several scoops of chocolate and vanilla protein ice cream. Two spoons are beside the bowl.

I’m sharing two flavor variations which make great bases. From there, feel free to customize to your liking! When it comes to the toppings, I usually top mine with nuts, chocolate, berries – the works, but the options are endless.

Two bowls. Each has three scoops of protein ice cream. One bowl has vanilla protein ice cream and one bowl has chocolate ice cream.

Is This Ice Cream Healthy?

You better believe it! This ice cream is made with minimal, good-for-you ingredients and has no refined sugar or artificial preservatives. It has more fiber and less sugar than traditional ice cream, but is still absolutely delicious.

With 11 grams of protein per serving it can help balance your blood sugar and leave you feeling satisfied instead of hungry for more. If you’re someone like me who could easily eat a whole pint of ice cream in one sitting, this recipe is definitely for you!

Here’s What You Need

We’re using my banana ice cream as the base for both recipes. The two ingredients you need are:

  • frozen bananas – I peel and slice the bananas before freezing so they’re easier to process!
  • dairy-free milk – any dairy-free milk works. I typically use unsweetened almond milk but use whatever you have on hand!
Ingredients measured out to make chocolate protein ice cream: nut butter, banana, almond milk, cocoa powder, chocolate protein powder and chocolate chips.

Additional Ingredients Chocolate Protein Ice Cream

  • almond butter or peanut butter – look for nut butter that doesn’t have any added ingredients. I usually go for the store brand and read the label to make sure it’s just one or two ingredients, the nuts and salt. If you need a nut-free option, sunflower butter or tahini would be great substitutions.
  • chocolate protein powder – chocolate protein powder gives this ice cream a ton of chocolate flavor! I personally love the chocolate Nuzest protein powder. It’s plant-based, has a minimal, clean ingredient list and is delicious. You can use my code eatingbirdfood for 15% off your order.
  • cocoa powder – add a little bit of extra chocolate flavor with the cocoa powder. Cacao works as well.
  • chocolate chips or cacao nibs – for added crunch and flavor! I like using Lily’s chocolate chips because they are dairy-free, low in calories and sweetened with stevia so there’s zero sugar added.
Ingredients measured out to make vanilla protein ice cream: almond milk, banana, cinnamon, protein powder and vanilla.

Additional Ingredients for Vanilla Protein Ice Cream

  • vanilla protein powder – get your protein and flavor in with this vanilla protein powder! I personally recommend Nuzest protein powder. It’s plant-based, has a minimal, clean ingredient list and is delicious. You can use my code eatingbirdfood for 15% off your order.
  • vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste – either works to add a delicious vanilla flavor! I prefer vanilla bean paste but I don’t always have that on hand and vanilla extract is still delicious.
  • cinnamon – this adds the the perfect amount of spice to the ice cream.

How to Make Protein Ice Cream

To make either flavor, you simply add all of the ingredients into your food processor and blend! It’s that easy.

Side by side photos of bananas, protein powder, almond milk and nut butter before and after bing blended to make chocolate protein ice cream.
Side by side photos. One is of cinnamon, bananas, almond milk and protein powder in a food processor. The second is the mixture blended smoothly.

When to Eat Protein Ice Cream

You might be thinking… this is ice cream so should I have it as dessert? But it also has protein so should I be eating it around a workout? My answer: yes and yes!

This protein ice cream is healthy enough to enjoy after a workout or as an afternoon snack to curb those mid-day cravings, but delicious enough to satisfy your ice cream craving and enjoy as an after-dinner treat.

Three scoops of vanilla protein ice cream in a bowl.

How to Serve

There are two ways to serve this protein ice cream – as soft serve or a scoop-able ice cream. I personally like eating it right away as soft serve, but it’s also delicious frozen and served more like traditional ice cream.

Soft Serve: For soft serve consistency, you can spoon the mixture into one or two bowls and serve immediately after processing with your desired toppings.

Frozen: For a scoop-able ice cream, transfer the ice cream to a freezer-safe dish (I like using a loaf pan lined with parchment paper) and freeze for at least 2 hours. Once ready to enjoy, pull the ice cream from the freezer, scoop and serve with your favorite toppings. If the ice cream gets too hard in the freezer, just let it thaw on the counter for 5-10 minutes before diving in!

Bowl and spoon with three scoops of chocolate protein ice cream.

How to Store Leftovers

This protein ice cream stores really well in the freezer. Just place leftovers in a freezer-safe container that’s covered completely and store for up to one month in the freezer.

tip!
Make sure your ice cream is tightly covered to prevent freezer burn!

More Frozen Treats to Try

Protein Ice Cream (2 Ways)

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This healthy protein ice cream uses frozen bananas as the base and can easily be made into two different flavors – chocolate or vanilla. It's vegan and you'll love how creamy and delicious it is!
Large bowl of several scoops of chocolate and vanilla protein ice cream. Two spoons are beside the bowl.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 2

Ingredients

Chocolate

  • 2 frozen bananas, chopped into chunks
  • ¼ cup dairy-free milk (I used almond milk)
  • 2 Tablespoons almond butter or peanut butter
  • 1 Tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 scoop (25 grams) chocolate protein powder (I used Nuzest)
  • ½ Tablespoon chocolate chips or cacao nibs

Vanilla

  • 2 frozen bananas, chopped into chunks
  • ¼ cup dairy-free milk (I used almond milk)
  • 1 scoop (25 grams) vanilla protein powder (I used Nuzest)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions
 

Chocolate

  • Place bananas, almond milk, almond butter, cocoa powder and protein powder into a food processor or high speed blender.
    Banana, cocoa powder, chocolate protein powder, peanut butter and almond milk in a food processor.
  • Pulse/process until smooth and creamy. This should take about 3-4 minutes. You may need to turn off the motor and stir the mixture a couple times while processing.
    Food processor with blended chocolate protein ice cream base.
  • Add in cacao nibs or chocolate chips (if using) and pulse once more.
  • Spoon ice cream into a bowl and enjoy! If you want to be able to scoop the ice cream you can pour it into a loaf pan lined with parchment and place in the freezer for 2 hours. Once hard, use an ice cream scoop to scoop it out and enjoy. Ice cream can be kept in the freezer for up to 1 month.

Vanilla

  • Place bananas, almond milk, vanilla, cinnamon and protein powder into a food processor or high speed blender.
    Food processor with banana, cinnamon, protein powder and peanut butter.
  • Pulse/process until smooth and creamy. This should take about 3-4 minutes. You may need to turn off the motor and stir the mixture a couple times while processing.
    Blended base in a food processor for the vanilla protein ice cream.
  • Spoon ice cream into a bowl and enjoy! If you want to be able to scoop the ice cream you can pour it into a loaf pan lined with parchment and place in the freezer for 2 hours. Once hard, use an ice cream scoop to scoop it out and enjoy. Ice cream can be kept in the freezer for up to 1 month.

Notes

  • Toppings: Feel free to add your favorite ice cream toppings to this protein ice cream. I love adding chocolate chips, berries and/or nuts. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1/2 of recipe Calories: 160kcal Carbohydrates: 29g Protein: 11g Fat: 1g Sodium: 204mg Potassium: 445mg Fiber: 3g Sugar: 14g
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: protein ice cream

DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

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Recipe Rating




    3 comments
    1. Giftbasketworldwide
      August 23, 2021 AT 10:11 pm

      Worth Appreciating. Great work.

    2. Sarah Madany
      August 20, 2021 AT 1:54 am

      Wow! This recipe looks so delicious, I’ll try it on this weekend!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        August 20, 2021 AT 11:05 am

        Woo!! Let me know how it turns out, Sarah!

Parchment paper lined with protein balls.

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