No-Churn Nutella Swirl Ice Cream Cake w/ Cocoa Puffs Crust
Yes… I’m serious.
I’m aware that this recipe is out of character, even for laid-back summer. But ever since one perfect, crystallized moment where this zanney idea popped into my head, I’ve been obsessed with making it. And after waiting since LAST SUMMER to make it happen (I’m hyping this way too much), here we are.
Homemade vanilla ice cream, Nutella swirls, and crushed Cocoa Puffs crust.
It’s as magical as it sounds, and it’s super easy, too.
Last summer I went on an ice cream making binge, and it continues this year unabated. I’ve already made four different kinds, and while my waistline is surely suffering from these endeavors (send help), the results have all been fantastic. I’ll be rolling them out in the next few weeks, and for starters, we have this.
What’s great about ice cream cake is that it’s simple to prepare yet adored by everyone, so it’s a total win-win. This recipe builds on that innate attractiveness by adding Nutella AND Cocoa Puffs, because extra is always better. Nutella is clearly a blockbuster, almost obvious choice, but the Cocoa Puffs are a bit rogue. That’s because the average frozen-cake crust is made of graham crackers, chocolate wafers, or Oreos — there isn’t much variety beyond that. So I decided to switch that up by grinding one of my favorite childhood cereals into DUST, then drowning it in melted butter.
Turns out, that was a great idea.
You start by making the crust, which unsurprisingly takes all of two minutes. Grind the Cocoa Puffs in your food processor until pulverized, then combine with melted butter until a malleable mixture takes shape. Mold the crust mixture to the bottom of a greased springform pan, then freeze for 10 minutes. While you wait, prep a classic vanilla ice cream base — heavy cream, sweetened condensed milk, and vanilla! — then it pour over the frozen crust. Lastly swirl in melted Nutella, and that’s IT!
Barely 15 minutes of prep later and you’ve got a killer dessert in the making.
Waiting patiently for this to freeze is the hardest part, and 8-hours is the absolute MINIMUM, so buckle up. But if you can manage to not go nuts with anticipation, this is worth every minute. The homemade vanilla ice cream is reliably rich, while the thick Nutella swirl practically glides off the unexpectedly airy Cocoa Puffs crust. And yes, I said airy! Even though the crust has tons of butter, that literal “puff” taste + texture does not dissipate. The result is a deliciously buttery crust that provides a flavorful, sturdy base without weighing this cake down.
Just remember — It’s up to YOU to only eat a sliver. I’m not responsible for anything beyond that.
I had fun decorating this with roughly chopped hazelnuts + extra Cocoa Puffs, and I suggest you do the same. Not only is the presentation cute (v important) but the added texture rocks too. Overall this is perfect for soirées all summer long, so whether you’re throwing the party or attending one, bring this!
Everyone will surely thank you. xo
No-Chrun Nutella Swirl Ice Cream Cake w/ Cocoa Puffs Crust
- 8 oz Cocoa Puffs + more for topping
- 1/2 cup + 3 tbsps salted butter, melted
- 13 oz Nutella
- one (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 pint heavy cream
- roughly chopped hazelnuts for topping
- shortening to grease
- Ample grease a 12″ springform pan with shortening.
- In a food processor grind the Cocoa Puffs into find crumbs. Next add in the melted butter, pulsing until a malleable mixture takes shape. Mold the crust mixture to the bottom of the springform pan, using a tablespoon to smooth the top. Freeze for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, wash out the food processor — Just a quick rinse is enough! Melt the Nutella in the microwave for about 30 – 45 seconds, stirring once.
- Once the crust is frozen, pour a thin layer of melted Nutella over it (I used about 1/4 cup), smoothing evenly with a spatula. Next, in a large mixing bowl combine the sweetened condensed milk and vanilla, whisking until smooth. Add the heavy cream to the food processor, then gently pulse for ~30 seconds until a whipped texture forms. Fold the whipped cream into the milk mixture until combined, then pour over the crust. Lastly swirl in the remaining Nutella, then freeze for 8 hours/overnight! When ready, top with chopped hazelnuts and the leftover Cocoa Puffs, then serve.