Red-Velvet Ice Cream Sandwiches

red-velvet ice cream sandwiches
Photo: Christopher Testani
Prep Time:
35 mins
Total Time:
9 hrs

The red-velvet cake got its name from its maroon color (courtesy of natural cocoa in early recipes) and soft, delicate crumb. Here, it transforms an ice cream sandwich. Yes, this is a bit of a project as there's a cake to make but all the work is done ahead and there's a reward for your patience: Blissful bites of crunchy chocolate shell, rich cake, and the cool creaminess of the vanilla ice-cream filling.


  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan

  • ¾ cup sugar

  • 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  • 2 large eggs, room temperature

  • ¾ cup unbleached all-purpose flour

  • 1 tablespoon natural cocoa powder

  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt (we use Diamond Crystal)

  • 2 teaspoons red food coloring, such as McCormick

  • 3 cups vanilla ice cream (from 2 pints)

  • 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (2 ¼ cups)

  • 2 tablespoons refined coconut oil or unsalted butter


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-by-13-inch rimmed baking sheet or baking dish. Line with parchment, leaving an overhang on two long sides. In a large bowl, whisk together butter, sugar, vanilla, and eggs.

  2. Whisk in flour, cocoa, and salt, then food coloring, until well incorporated. Pour batter into prepared pan, smoothing in an even layer with a small offset spatula.

  3. Bake until cake is dry to the touch, about 14 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack 5 minutes. Use parchment overhangs to lift out of pan, then transfer to rack and let cool completely. Transfer to a work surface; cut in half crosswise. Remove from parchment and place one half on a baking sheet lined with a piece of plastic wrap, bottom-side down.

  4. Beat ice cream with a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until malleable, then spread evenly over layer of cake on sheet. Top with second piece of cake, bottom-side up. Wrap tightly in plastic; freeze at least 8 hours and up to 1 week.

  5. Use a serrated knife to trim edges straight. Cut in half lengthwise, then crosswise into 10 approximate 1 1/2-by-2 3/4-inch rectangles. Place on a wire rack set over a baking sheet; freeze 15 minutes.

  6. Melt chocolate with coconut oil or butter over a double boiler (or in a microwave). Remove sandwiches from freezer and dip one of cake sides in chocolate. Return to rack, chocolate-side up, then return to freezer to set, at least 10 minutes. If desired, dip second side and freeze (we like the dramatic stripes of color, so we only dipped about half of each side). Cake can be kept frozen, tightly covered, up to 1 week.

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