Dirty Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

We have news for you. That supermarket mint chip ice cream with the nuclear-green color? It doesn't have any mint leaves in it. It has mint oil or fake mint flavoring, and that nasty color comes from artificial coloring. Real, fresh mint leaves give our Dirty Mint a fresh, cool intensity. Why is it "dirty"? Because we use brown sugar in the base, which gives the ice cream a deep caramel punch and a natural light brown color. It is also "dirty" because we don't strain out the mint. Leaving it in deepens the flavor the longer the ice cream is in the freezer. (Warning: This has been known to convert mint ice cream haters.) Excerpted from COOLHAUS © 2014 by Natasha Case and Freya Estreller. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

  • Prep:
  • Yield: Makes about 1 1⁄2 quarts
Dirty Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream


  • 1⁄3 cup finely chopped fresh mint leaves
  • 1⁄2 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Plain Custard Base, made with light brown sugar instead of granulated
  • 1⁄2 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips (we like Guittard or Ghirardelli)


  1. Stir mint leaves, dark brown sugar, and salt into base. Mix well.

  2. Process in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions.

  3. Transfer to a bowl and fold in chocolate chips.

  4. Scrape into an airtight storage container. Freeze for a minimum of 2 hours before serving.


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