This turtle ice cream is a decadent, creamy vanilla ice cream packed with toasted pecans, caramel and hot fudge swirls, and chopped up Turtle candies.
I love turtle candies, and a delicious ice cream flavor inspired them is one of the best ideas I’ve had in a while.
Who can say no to crunchy pecans, smooth caramel, decadent hot fudge, and delicious Turtle candy pieces. It’s such a delicious ice cream combination, all the flavors and textures come together so nicely.
This Turtle ice cream is decadent, and delicious, and one of my new favorite ice cream flavors. But don’t forget to try our cookie monster ice cream, and peanut butter ice cream for two of my other favorites.
This Turtle Ice Cream is one of my favorite new summer treats. You only need a few ingredients, and a few minutes of your time (plus an ice cream maker, and a couple bowls), and a few hours later you’ve got one of the best homemade ice creams out there.
Why you’ll love this recipe:
- It’s so easy to make – only 9 ingredients, and no eggs or cooking required!
- Packed full of goodness – Did I mention chocolate, caramel, and pecans?!
This is a quick overview of the ingredients you’ll need for this Turtle Ice Cream recipe. Specific measurements and full recipe instructions are in the printable recipe card below.
- heavy cream
- whole milk
- granulated sugar – we need this to help the texture and the sweetness of the ice cream
- vanilla extract – a must mix in for almost every ice cream recipe, it really elevates the flavor of the ice cream base.
- salt – helps to balance the sweetness of the ice cream
- toasted pecans – you can use already toasted nuts, or take a few minutes to toast your own. They add the perfect crunch to the ice cream.
- Turtle candies – these candy pieces really amplify the turtle ice cream, with actual turtle candies. They add a nice crunchy chewiness, and are such a fun surprise in the ice cream.
- caramel sauce – you can use a homemade caramel sauce, or store bought – it adds a perfect buttery sweet richness to the ice cream.
- hot fudge – you can use a homemade fudge sauce, or store bought – this adds the perfect rich chocolatey swirl to the ice cream.
How to make Turtle Ice Cream?
- Add your heavy cream, milk, sugar, vanilla, salt to a large bowl and stir it all together until the sugar starts to dissolve.
- Pour the mixture into a prepared ice cream maker bowl and run the ice cream maker until it’s nice and creamy throughout.
- Add in most of the toasted pecans, and chopped Turtle candies and let the ice cream machine churn for a few more minutes until they are mixed evenly throughout the homemade vanilla ice cream. (I save a few to put on top of the ice cream to make it pretty)
- Scoop some of the ice cream into a 2QT container, drizzle caramel and hot fudge over the top. Repeat with more ice cream, more caramel and chocolate, ice cream, caramel and chocolate, etc. until the ice cream is all scooped into the pan, ending with caramel and chocolate. Sprinkle a few of the pecans and candies on top.
- Cover the container with plastic wrap and place it in the freezer for at least 6 hours. (I prefer overnight to make a nice solid scoopable ice cream)
Tips and Tricks:
- Don’t skimp on the fat for the richest, creamiest ice cream. Heavy cream, and high fat milk will give you the best results.
- This is one ice cream I don’t recommend adding additional mix ins to. The ice cream is already loaded and you don’t want to take away the flavor combinations you already have.
Can you make this ice cream without an ice cream maker?
You can make a similar ice cream without an ice cream maker by making a no churn vanilla ice cream with sweetened condensed milk, whipped cream, and vanilla and then mixing in the caramel, hot fudge, pecans, and candy pieces as you spoon the ice cream into a pan. Freeze as instructed until ice cream is hard and scoopable.
- Substitute brown sugar for the granulated sugar for a more caramel flavor in your ice cream base.
- Substitute your favorite nuts instead of pecans if desired, walnuts, macadamia nuts, peanuts, almonds etc.
- Substitute chopped Rolo candies for the turtles if they’re easier to find, or you prefer them. You could also add in chopped up Snickers Bars instead. You could also substitute chocolate chunks, or even mini chocolate chips.
- Swap the caramel sauce for butterscotch topping, if desired.
- Try a chocolate based ice cream instead of vanilla. I love this simple chocolate ice cream.
How to store turtle ice cream?
Store your homemade ice cream in an airtight container in the freezer. The ice cream can be stored for up to 3 weeks for the best results and to avoid any freezer burn.
This turtle ice cream is such a delicious dessert. It’s decadent, and rich, and creamy, and loaded with caramel, and chocolate, and pecans, and you won’t be able to pass it up this summer. It’s perfect for hot days!
More Homemade Ice Cream Recipes:
- Butter Pecan Ice Cream
- Rocky Road Ice Cream
- Cookies and Cream Ice Cream
- Biscoff Cookie Butter Ice Cream
- Cake Batter Ice Cream
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Turtle Ice Cream
For the Vanilla Ice Cream Base:
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1 cups whole milk
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 dash salt
For Mixing In:
- 1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans
- 3/4 cup diced Turtle candies **
- 3 TBS caramel sauce
- 3 TBS hot fudge sauce
- Large Mixing Bowl
For the Vanilla Ice Cream Base:
- Add the cream, milk, sugar, vanilla, and salt to a large bowl and stir them together for a couple minutes to help the sugar dissolve.
- Pour the ice cream mixture into the bowl of an ice cream maker, and run the machine according to the manufactures directions, about 25 to 30 minutes, until the ice cream is nice and creamy, like a soft serve consistency.
For Mixing In:
- Add in all of the chopped pecans and Turtle candy pieces (except a couple Tablespoons) and let the ice cream continue churning for a few minutes until the pieces are well mixed throughout.
- Scoop some of the ice cream into the bottom of a 2QT container (a 9x5 bread pan works great). Then drizzle some of the caramel sauce and hot fudge sauce over the top with a spoon.
- Repeat with 2 or 3 more layers of ice cream, and caramel and hot fudge, ending with caramel and hot fudge sauce.
- Sprinkle remaining pecans and candy pieces over the top.
- Cover the container with plastic wrap, and place it in the freezer for at least 6 hours, or overnight for a thick scoopable ice cream.