Ricotta Ice Cream With Balsamic Strawberries

Ricotta Ice Cream with Balsamic Strawberries

Today, we’re continuing our month of summer desserts with this simple ricotta ice cream with balsamic glazed strawberries. (Bonus: You don’t need an ice-cream maker!) The wonderful Skye McAlpine shows us how to make it…

No-Churn Homemade Ricotta Ice Cream with Balsamic Strawberries
by Skye McAlpine of From My Dining Table

Summer in Venice is pretty much all about the gelato. The air feels so hot and humid that some days gelato is all we want to eat. While there is no shortage of local (and excellent) ice-cream shops, I have found that since discovering this simple way of making my own, I almost never feel the need to buy it. Something about the ricotta makes the gelato irresistibly light and airy. You don’t need an ice-cream maker: all you do is beat egg yolks with sugar, then add a touch of Marsala (the alcohol stops the cream from freezing completely and gives it that lovely soft texture) and a dollop of ricotta cheese. Then leave the cream to chill in the freezer before serving.

The gelato is delicious on its own (I have been known to eat it by spoonful straight from the fridge), but you could add a few chocolate chips to the cream base if you like, or even a few raisins (soaked in Marsala for extra flavor) and chunks of candied peel. This time of year, I love to serve it with strawberries. I soak them in balsamic vinegar with a little sugar — it’s an unexpected but utterly classic Italian combination that adds just a little rich sweetness to the fruit, and creates lovely, thick, syrup-y juices to drizzle over the ice cream.

Ricotta Ice Cream with Balsamic Strawberries

Ricotta Ice Cream with Balsamic Strawberries

Ricotta Ice Cream with Balsamic Strawberries

Ricotta Ice Cream with Balsamic Strawberries

Ricotta Ice Cream with Balsamic Strawberries

Recipe: No-Churn Homemade Ricotta Ice Cream with Strawberries and Balsamic Syrup
(Serves 6)

You’ll need:

2 cups (500g) ricotta cheese
1 1/3 cups (200g) confectioners sugar
4 eggs
2 tbsp (30ml) Marsala wine
2 heaped cups (250g) strawberries
5 tsp caster (superfine) sugar
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 lemon

To make the ice cream, spoon the ricotta into a sieve and stand it over a mixing bowl; use the back of the spoon to press the ricotta through the sieve. This will make the ice cream even smoother. Crack the eggs and separate the yolks from the whites. Discard the whites (or save them to make meringue), toss the yolks into a large mixing bowl, sift in the confectioners sugar and whisk vigorously until the yolks becomes thick and pale in color (you want them to be a lemon-y shade of yellow). Slowly add the Marsala wine, whisking all the while, until the custard is light and fluffy. Spoon the ricotta into the sieve a second time, and, again using the back of a spoon, press it into the egg custard; then whisk vigorously for a moment or two, until well combined, and pour the cream into a plastic container or freezer-proof bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and set in the freezer for 4 to 6 hours, until frozen.

Hull the strawberries and cut them in half. Toss them into a bowl, sprinkle with the caster sugar and drizzle with the balsamic vinegar, then squeeze in the juice of the lemon. Toss the strawberries in the juices and set them in the fridge to rest for an hour or so.

When you are ready to serve, scoop the ice cream into small bowls and top with strawberries and all their irresistible sweet juices.

Ricotta Ice Cream with Balsamic Strawberries

Thank you so much, Skye

P.S. More recipes, including peanut butter fudge and homemade tiramisu.

  1. Jasmine says...

    Hi, it sounds pretty good, but i’ve a question: you don’t mention cooking the egg yolks, do you do it or are you using them raw?

  2. Great summer desert! thas recipe makes me to salivate

  3. This looks amazing – strawberries are a favorite in the summer and love new recipes for using them! Your red and white stripe shirt looks adorable with the dessert!!

  4. Gayle faigen says...

    Have you ever tried it with a reduced fat ricotta or light

    • Hi Gayle! No, I haven’t – I find that the ricotta is quite light and (relatively) low in fat anyhow so I have never tried substituting with a ‘light’ option – but I would love to know how it goes… Hope you enjoy the ice cream! Xx

  5. Anna says...

    I can’t wait to try this recipe! With the garden producing more strawberries with each day, I’ll need a good use for them. And what’s better than ricotta? Nothing. Thank you for the inspiring, and gorgeous photos backed by a wonderful and seemingly easy recipe.

  6. Jana says...

    So i’m a bit confused-Do I drain out the ricotta and throw away the liquid? And use the thick part?

    • Hi Jana! So, what I usually do is stand the ricotta in a sieve over a bowl for a few moments and then throw away any excess liquid that drizzles through (if there is any). Then I press the bulk of the ricotta through the sieve (using the back of a spoon to help me) before adding it to the mixture for the ice cream. You can skip this step if you like, but I find that it just makes the ice cream a little smoother (and it only take a minute!). Hope that helps a little! :)

  7. I just got back from Portugal, and had the best gelato of my life multiple times there (from an Italian shop, of course).
    Definitely need to try this to help with the cravings!

    • Nataly says...

      Where was this? We regularly travel to Portugal and are going later this summer!

  8. Oh, wow! This looks delish! :)

  9. There’s no way I’m not making this. This looks so great! #pregnancycravings

  10. I only came across your recipes a couple of weeks ago and not once have I been disappointed. This looks like another great one; I am sure my daughters will love it. We will be trying it out soon. Thank you x

  11. Looks incredible :)

  12. jeannie says...

    This looks amazing!

  13. Will definitely have to try this out this summer! Gorgeous photos!


  14. I’m salivating! What a dreamy combo

  15. UHM I need this in my mouth now. I love strawberries and ricotta as a snack or dessert and I love ice cream even more!!!!

  16. Devon says...

    Any suggestions for substituting the Marsala? I’m deathly allergic but I want to make this more than anything I’ve ever wanted before.

    • Hi Devon! I’ve made it with rum before and that’s delicious too – not sure if that works better with your allergies? You need a little alcohol to stop crystals forming in the ice cream and to give it that lovely soft texture – you could try amaretto or another liqueur otherwise… Hope that helps! Xx

  17. This sounds so good! I’ve never made my own ice cream, but I’m tempted to try this (I have been known to drizzle some balsamic over a good vanilla though :).

    Do you guys know about MilkMade Ice Cream? They do a monthly ice cream subscription with amazing handcrafted flavors in NYC. My first delivery from them was brie ice cream with a cabernet caramel swirl…..and it was divine! This totally reminds me of that! Yum!!

  18. Perfect! I love Skye (her work is just gorgeous!), I love ricotta, and I really love balsamic strawberries. Even if you don’t have time to do the full ice cream, you must do the strawberries. They’re even better if you use brown sugar in place of caster sugar and roast them in a 400 degree oven for a few minutes.

  19. Jo says...

    I’m in total awe… This looks soooo good. Thank you so much!!!

  20. First of all – I LOVE that you’re sharing so many recipes lately! This is one that I’m not entirely sure I’d like because I’m SUCH a picky eater. But, I’m feeling adventurous and will be trying this tonight!

  21. This looks so delicious. Strawberries with sugar are one of my sons’ favorite desserts. I’ve never made ice cream at home though, I will now!
    We also love Tiramisu for summer! I posted my family recipe last month if you are interested. It involves dulce de leche…


  22. I’m going to have to try this!

  23. Yummy, this sounds so delicious, and, the photographs really make it a visual treat as well.

    I must admit, I am always nervous about eating raw eggs. I do buy mine from a farmers’ market and they are ultra fresh, but I still hesitate.

    • I eat raw eggs now and then, always organic or from the Farmer’s Market, and I have never gotten sick. But organic does not equate salmonella free. The recipe should come with a disclaimer that raw eggs could make you sick. I suppose you could buy pasteurized ones, if you can find them. They have a slightly different texture but they do solve the problem.

  24. Tamar says...

    OMG this is all I can think about now. I need this in my life and can’t wait to make it!!!

    LOVE these recipes – quick and easy, and no fuss!

  25. This really looks amazing. Can’t wait to try it!

  26. This looks so delicious! 3 cheers for no-churn ice cream. How perfect would this be for the 4th of July?! I’m putting this on my “must-make” list!

  27. Wahhh I need that apron! Where is that from?

    • Hi Connor! I love this apron too – it’s from Ice Milk Aprons. You can buy them here: – I think that they make really lovely things! Xx

  28. Wow. so incredibly gorgeous. and that looks DELICIOUS.