A long while back, I shared a post (it was really a rant) about how I believe really decadent food should never be easy or fast because then we would all eat too much of it. And I argued we should always make food from scratch rather than buying shortcuts because it will help us curb our intense cravings for crazy decadence.
It's a good premise and I firmly believe it. But deep down inside, I'm still the 17-year-old kid who snuck off to the local gas station every other summer afternoon to buy an ice cream sandwich from the little bin of assorted frozen treats. And who ate the whole sandwich in under a minute. And the same kid who decided it was a good thing he had purchased TWO ice cream sandwiches so there'd be one to savor on the walk home...
As devoted as I am to making food with love from scratch, there's times when I just want the easy convenience of tearing open an individually wrapped ice cream cookie sandwich. And even though I love Boyfriend Javelin and all those I cook for, sometimes I don't want to spend 2 days baking brioche or 3 hours on apple pie or 2 hours on chocolate cake (stupid chocolate cake that forever mocks me!). I just want to grab that cookie sandwich and devour. In under a minute.
And so I give you homemade ice cream cookie sandwiches. Super easy to make, utterly satisfying, completely from scratch, and so comforting you'll completely forget about stupid chocolate cakes that brazenly mock you. The trick is having the forethought and wisdom to prepare these sandwiches in advance, wrapping each sandwich individually and storing a stash in the freezer. Because you never know when that ravenous 17-year-old may sneak back in search of pre-made instant gratification.
Sadly, this ready-made stash of homemade ice cream cookie sandwiches may not last as long as you naively intend. And as you devour sandwich after sandwich, you may recall that I did say that such decadence really shouldn't be so easy.
A couple notes about these sandwiches:
- Homemade ice cream cookie sandwiches require two things: homemade ice cream and homemade cookies. For me, that's never a problem because I'm always making a new batch of ice cream and lately I always seem to have cookies in my freezer. If you don't already have homemade cookies and ice cream hanging about, these sandwiches will take a bit longer to assemble...
- I have recommended my favorite homemade vanilla ice cream and favorite oatmeal raisin chocolate chunk cookies for these sandwiches because the pairing offers a wonderful balance of flavors and contrasting textures. You could use another cookie or ice cream, but watch out for overpowering sweetness with some combinations...
- Make these sandwiches in advance and make a lot of them. And then restrain yourself. Homemade ice cream cookie sandwiches do require a bit of waiting and wrapping, but if you make a big batch, it's really worth the investment of time
- I don't roll my cookie sandwiches in mini chocolate chips because I hate how the chips turn into tiny shards of frozen chocolate. So I sacrifice a little decadence for toothsomeness. But that just means there's more mini chocolate chips left for you
I attempt to make all of my recipes more healthful by eliminating transfats, artificial dyes and flavorings, preservatives, and pre-prepared shortcuts. However, this recipe still contains a great deal of fat and sugar and is thus not a health-conscious food. Out of respect and love for your own body (and for those you cook for), please exercise restraint when consuming ice cream cookie sandwiches and other treats!
Homemade Ice Cream Cookie Sandwiches
Prep Time: 10 min Chill Time: 3 hr 20 min Yield: 1 dozen ice cream cookie sandwiches
- Select 24 similarly sized cookies and place 12 of the cookies on a half-sheet pan, bottoms facing up
- Place one large scoop of softened ice cream in the center of each up-turned cookie on the half-sheet pan (I use a 2-inch ice cream scoop for this), then place a matching cookie on top of each scoop of ice cream and press down gently to flatten the scoop of ice cream slightly
- Place the sheet of cookie sandwiches in the freezer for 20 minutes to allow the cookie sandwiches to set; meanwhile, prepare squares of plastic wrap for wrapping the sandwiches
- After sandwiches are set, remove the sheet of cookies from the freezer and wrap each sandwich tightly in plastic wrap. Freeze sandwiches for at least 3 hours before eating
- The secret to awesome ice cream cookie sandwiches is the homemade cookies and ice cream. So take the time and make your own, even if you don't use the recipes I've recommend
- You really could use any cookie you especially love for ice cream sandwiches, but these oatmeal raisin chocolate chunk cookies are especially good because of the marvelous texture from the oats contrasted with the creamy smoothness of the ice cream. And I love the chewy bits of raisin, the intensity of the dark chocolate and the spice from the cinnamon - all balanced against intense vanilla
- You really need the ice cream to be softened in order to make sandwiches, otherwise the ice cream will not adhere to the cookies and either the hard ice cream will pop out the back of the sandwich as you bite down, or the cookies will crumble because the ice cream has not adhered and thus is not helping to hold them together
- Because ice cream needs to be softened, I find the best time to make these sandwiches is right after I've made a batch of ice cream. After the ice cream has frozen in for 1-2 hours after making, it's still nice and soft but it doesn't melt too quickly. And it really adheres to the cookies when you re-freeze the sandwiches
- It's important to harden the ice cream in the sandwich during the re-freeze step - this ensures the cookies and ice cream adhere to each other and prevents the ice cream from squeezing out the back when you bite down
- Wrapping the sandwiches prevents freezer burn and it also allows you to save the sandwiches for up to 2 weeks in the freezer
- If the sandwiches are too firm when you remove from the freezer, just let them rest at room temperature for 5-10 minutes