Thanksgiving-Treats-Homemade-Ice-Cream-Treats-to-Sweeten-Your-Celebration-featured-image-272x850w-top-view-of-thanksgiving-pumpkins-fall-leaves-turkey-charred-corn-happy-thanksgiving-sign frosted fusions

Homemade Ice Cream to Sweeten Your Thanksgiving Celebrations

Discover delicious ice cream desserts to elevate your Thanksgiving feast. From classic flavours to creative twists, find the perfect sweet treat to be thankful for.

Thanksgiving is very much a US celebration, however, we wanted to help celebrate the occasion with a delicious homemade ice cream that is decadent and rich and Thanksgiving appropriate.

Thanksgiving is a time-honoured holiday that holds historical significance as a day of gratitude and feasting. Families across the United States gather to express thanks and share a hearty meal, making it a cherished occasion.

Thanksgiving Treats Homemade Ice Cream Treats to Sweeten Your Celebration image 8 several people around a table one man serving a turkey with glasses  and plates on table lots of smiles and festive feeling frosted fusions

Amidst the classic Thanksgiving pies and desserts, ice cream offers a cool, refreshing, and delicious addition to the festive table.

In this article, we will explore the sweet side of Thanksgiving, sharing several Thanksgiving-appropriate ice cream treats that encapsulate the essence of Thanksgiving and add a modern twist to this traditional celebration.

Thanksgiving Traditions:

Rooted in a historical narrative of gratitude and unity, Thanksgiving has evolved into a celebration that brings families together. It’s a time to reflect on blessings, share laughter, and indulge in a feast that embodies the spirit of togetherness.

From the iconic roasted turkey to pumpkin pies and comforting sides, Thanksgiving revolves around the joy of being with loved ones and creating lasting memories.

Thanksgiving with a Scoop:

Thanksgiving Treats Homemade Ice Cream Treats to Sweeten Your Celebration image 5 slice of pumpkin pie topped with fresh cream and with scoop of ice cream along with pumpkin in the background frosted fusionsAs Thanksgiving traditions evolve, so do the culinary creations that grace our tables. Ice cream, often associated with warmer seasons, has found its way into the hearts of Thanksgiving enthusiasts.

Imagine a scoop of pumpkin pie-flavoured ice cream, a swirl of cranberry sorbet, or a decadent pecan praline sundae. These innovative ice cream desserts bring a delicious twist to the traditional Thanksgiving menu, offering a cool and creamy contrast to the warmth of the holiday season.

A Scoop for Every Palate:

From traditional flavours to inventive creations, ice cream brings a lighthearted and delicious note to this day of gratitude. Whether you’re a fan of classic vanilla or adventurous enough to try a scoop of sweet potato pie ice cream, Thanksgiving-inspired ice cream is unique and inviting.

You can experiment and try out different flavours to find the one(s) that work best for you and that will perfectly complement the Thanksgiving spirit.

With each scoopful, these desserts add a touch of sweetness to an already warm and happy celebration.

Thanksgiving Scoops:

Below we’ve listed a selection of Thanksgiving-appropriate ice cream flavours to consider for your upcoming Thanksgiving celebrations:

  • Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream: Thanksgiving just isn’t the same without a slice of classic Thanksgiving pumpkin pie. There is nothing better than a bite into that flaky crust and smooth pumpkin filling, full of those classic pumpkin spice flavours. A creamy pumpkin ice cream, with swirls of spiced pie crust with hints of cinnamon and mixed spices, would certainly fit the bill.
  • Apple Cider Caramel Swirl:
    • Fresh apple cider-infused ice cream with ribbons of rich caramel running through.
  • Thanksgiving Treats: Homemade Ice Cream Treats to Sweeten Your Celebration image 1 scoops of satsuma ice cream with satsumas and segments gingerbread vookies and pine tree branches frosted fusionsCranberry Orange Sorbet:
    • Refreshing sorbet featuring the tartness of cranberries balanced with the citrusy brightness of oranges.
  • Maple Pecan Crunch:
    • Old-fashioned pecan pie is a classic Autumn/fall dessert with a homemade pie crust and sweet custard filling loaded with crunchy pecans — perfect for Thanksgiving. Converted into a smooth maple-flavoured ice cream studded with crunchy candied pecans.
  • Sweet Potato Marshmallow Swirl:
    • Velvety sweet potato ice cream with swirls of gooey marshmallow goodness.
  • Brown Butter Bourbon Pecan:
    • Rich brown butter and bourbon-infused ice cream with generous chunks of caramelized pecans.
  • Gingerbread Cookie Dough:
    • Creamy gingerbread-spiced ice cream with bites of soft gingerbread cookie dough.
  • Cinnamon Toast Crunch:
    • Cinnamon-infused ice cream with ribbons of caramel and pieces of crunchy cinnamon toast.
  • Vanilla Bean Buttermilk:
    • Buttermilk-infused vanilla bean ice cream for a tangy and creamy flavour.
  • Caramelized Fig and Honey:
    • Luxurious ice cream featuring caramelised figs and a drizzle of golden honey.
  • Apple Pie à la Mode:
    • Creamy vanilla ice cream with swirls of cinnamon-spiced apple compote and crunchy bites of pie crust, reminiscent of a classic apple pie à la mode.

As you plan your Thanksgiving feast, consider adding a scoop or two of ice cream deliciousness to your dessert spread.

And the great thing about homemade ice cream Thanksgiving desserts is that they can all be prepared and stored days, even weeks in advance, making it a stress-free dessert to add to your Thanksgiving table.

We’ve chosen a couple of ice creams to highlight. One for the kiddies – A Gingerbread Cookie Dough Ice Cream and one dedicated solely for the grown-ups, A Brown Butter Bourbon and Pecan Ice Cream. Both are serious contenders for your Thanksgiving spreads.

Gingerbread Cookie Dough Homemade Ice Cream.

Let’s start with this fun ice cream that is sure to be a winner with the kids at Thanksgiving and as we are preparing these recipes for our US readers, we’ve provided US measurements with UK measurements in brackets.

For the Gingerbread Cookie Dough:


  • Thanksgiving Treats Homemade Ice Cream Treats to Sweeten Your Celebration image 3 scoop of gingerbread cookie dough ice cream in cone with gingerbread cookies in background frosted fusions1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup (75g) light brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons (40g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (180g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup (75g) chopped crystallized ginger (optional)

For the Ice Cream Base:


  • 2 cups (475 ml) heavy cream
  • Thanksgiving Treats Homemade Ice Cream Treats to Sweeten Your Celebration image 2 scoops of ice cream covered in a dusting of cinnamon with fresh cinnamon to the side frosted fusions1 cup (240 ml) whole milk
  • 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


1. Prepare the Gingerbread Cookie Dough:

  • In a large bowl, cream together the softened butter, light brown sugar, and granulated sugar until smooth.
  • Add the egg and vanilla extract, mixing until well combined.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, ground cinnamon, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, and salt.
  • Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until a soft cookie dough forms.
  • Fold in the chopped crystallized ginger if using.
  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate the cookie dough while you prepare the ice cream base.

2. Prepare the Ice Cream Base:

  • Prepare Ice Cream Maker:
    Ensure your ice cream maker’s freezer bowl is properly frozen.
  • Combine Ingredients:
    In a mixing bowl, whisk together the heavy cream, whole milk, sugar, and vanilla extract until the sugar is dissolved. (UK: Whisk together double cream, whole milk, sugar, and vanilla extract)
  • Chill Mixture:
    Cover the bowl and refrigerate the mixture for at least 2 hours, or overnight. This step helps in achieving a creamier texture.

Now you have your ice cream base ready to be infused with the delicious flavours of gingerbread cookie dough!

3. Combine Cookie Dough and Ice Cream Base:

  • Once the ice cream base is thoroughly chilled, remove the gingerbread cookie dough from the refrigerator.
  • Roll the cookie dough into small, bite-sized pieces.

4. Churn the Ice Cream:

  • Churn the ice cream base in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • In the last few minutes of churning, add in the chunks of gingerbread cookie dough.

5. Freeze the Ice Cream:

  • Transfer the churned ice cream to a lidded container, ensuring an even distribution of cookie dough.
  • Freeze the ice cream for at least 4 hours or until firm.

6. Serve and Enjoy:

  • Scoop the gingerbread cookie dough ice cream into bowls or cones.
  • Garnish with additional cookie dough pieces if desired.
  • Enjoy your homemade gingerbread cookie dough ice cream!

Feel free to customise the recipe to your taste preferences, maybe a little less sugar, or perhaps a few extra chocolate chips, you can customise it exactly as you like to suit your taste preferences.

Now for the grown-ups Ice Cream!!

Brown Butter Bourbon and Pecan Homemade Ice Cream:

This ice cream, loaded with pecans and a hint, well actually a large splash of bourbon is simply delicious, it’s rich, it’s indulgent and it combines a sweet-savoury combination of flavours.


  • 1 cup (240 ml) whole milkThanksgiving Treats Homemade Ice Cream Treats to Sweeten Your Celebration image 4 scoops of brownbutter and boubon ice cream topped with pecans and drizzled with a caramel sauce frosted fusions
  • 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
  • 2 cups (475 ml) double cream
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (60g) pecans, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons bourbon (adjust to your own taste preferences)


  • Brown the Butter:
    In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Continue to cook, stirring frequently until the butter turns golden brown and has a nutty aroma. Be cautious not to burn it. Remove from heat and let it cool slightly.
  • Toast Pecans:
    In a separate pan, lightly toast the chopped pecans over medium heat until fragrant. Set aside.
  • Prepare Ice Cream Base:
    In a mixing bowl, whisk together egg yolks and sugar until well combined. (UK Measurements: Whisk together egg yolks and sugar)
  • Heat Milk and Cream:
    In a saucepan, heat the whole milk and double cream over medium heat until it just begins to simmer. Do not boil. (UK Measurements: Heat whole milk and double cream)
  • Temper Eggs:
    Gradually whisk the heated milk and cream into the egg-sugar mixture. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan.
  • Cook Custard:
    Cook over low-medium heat, stirring constantly, until the custard thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Do not let it boil. Remove from heat.
  • Add Brown Butter:
    Strain the custard to remove any lumps. Stir in the brown butter and add salt. Let it cool.
  • Chill Mixture:
    Cover the mixture and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
  • Churn Ice Cream:
    Churn the custard in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Add Pecans and Bourbon:Thanksgiving Treats Homemade Ice Cream Treats to Sweeten Your Celebration image 10 bourbon and pecans served together frosted fusions
    During the last few minutes of churning, add the toasted pecans and bourbon.
  • Freeze:
    Transfer the ice cream to a lidded container, and freeze for at least 4 hours or until firm.

Now you have a rich and flavourful Brown Butter Bourbon and Pecan Ice Cream that you can prepare in advance of the big day!

NOTE: If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can still make this recipe. Pour the mixture into a freezer-safe container and freeze. Every 30 minutes, stir the mixture vigorously with a fork to break up ice crystals, repeating this process for about 3-4 hours or until the ice cream is firm. Please also check out our post – Homemade Ice Cream: Without an Ice Cream Maker to learn more.

We hope you have enjoyed our article celebrating the Thanksgiving celebrations and sharing a selection of Thanksgiving-appropriate homemade ice creams.

If you have any questions, please feel free to drop us a comment below and of course, we would love to hear from you if you give any of these delicious Homemade Ice Cream Recipes a go.


  1. Thanksgiving is the perfect time to be sharing meals with family and friends, and desert is always on the menu. These homemade ice creams sound delicious, and with some very unusual combinations, there is a flavour for every taste. 

    From gingerbread cookie dough, to pecan crunch and pumpkin pie icecream, it all sounds quite decadent.  I see the recipes all use an icecream maker, but how essential is it to have an icecream maker? Can it be made without a machine? Thank you. 

    • Hi, thanks for dropping by and for your comment.

      Really glad that you appreciated the ideas and recipes for our ice creams for Thanksgiving, there are numerous flavour combinations that work perfectly for the celebration.

      Regarding your question, absolutely, yes you can still make all these delicious desserts without a nice cream maker, please check out our post – How to Make Homemade Ice Cream without an Ice Cream Maker – which provides all the hints and tips you could possibly need.

      If you do give these ideas a go, we’d love to hear how you get on.

      All the very best

      Cherie :o)

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