Today I’m sharing another simple variation on banana ‘nice-cream’, this time a yummy blackberry banana ice cream recipe which makes a delicious healthy dessert! I’m also sharing a few tips on storing and freezing blackberries which may be helpful if you’ve been foraging for them this year.
When I shared my simple blackberry yoghurt parfait recipe recently I mentioned that Small Child and I had been on our annual blackberry picking mission and returned with a mountain of blackberries, so I’ve been using them up in various recipes and this blackberry ice cream has been a particular hit! It could probably be argued that this recipe is closer to a sorbet than an ice cream really, as it is completely dairy free, but I think it’s somewhere in the middle between the two and my boys prefer the sound of ice cream!
Because we came back with so many blackberries when we went collecting them, I needed to store most of them until I was ready to use them, so I chose to freeze them. It took a little time to prepare them properly but it was really worth it – I now have several bags of beautiful blackberries in the freezer that are ready to grab by the handful whenever I need them.
If you’re going to freeze blackberries, it’s best to do it as soon as possible after picking. I’ve detailed my process below, it’s really very easy!
To start with, you need sort through the blackberries and wash them to flush out any little bugs or creepy crawlies. I do this by filling a bowl with cold water with a dash of white vinegar, then dropping handfuls of the blackberries into it, giving them a gentle swirl then leaving them to soak for a minute or two. If there are any little unwanted visitors, they’ll usually float to the top, so you can scoop them off and dispose of them.
Once you’re satisfied the blackberries are clean, lay out some kitchen paper and gently remove them from the water, popping them onto the kitchen paper to drain. Leave them to dry off, then line a baking tray or two with grease-proof paper (tinfoil also works if you’re out of paper) and spread the blackberries on it in a single layer. This is an important step to keep the blackberries loose and not frozen together in a giant clump, and the paper stops them sticking to the tray, making them easier to remove once frozen.
Put the trays into your freezer and leave them there until the blackberries are frozen solid – I usually leave them overnight. Once frozen, remove from the tray and store in an airtight tub or freezer bag until ready to use. Once frozen, they can be kept for up to a year, so you’ll have plenty of time to use them up!
As my blackberries were already frozen, it was a natural step to add it to our favourite 1 ingredient banana ice cream recipe.
Blackberry Banana Ice Cream
- 3-4 large bananas
- 200g frozen blackberries (see method above)
- maple syrup or honey to taste
Peel and chop the bananas into rounds, then lay them out on lined baking tray and freeze overnight until solid. If you’re not going to make the ice-cream immediately, you can pop the frozen banana pieces into an air-tight bag and return to the freezer until ready to use.
Once you’re ready to make the ice cream, throw the banana pieces and frozen blackberries into a high speed blender and whizz them up together until smooth. You’ll probably find that the fruit breaks up into a crumbly texture and you need to scrape down the sides several times, but be patient and continue to blend it until it goes smooth and creamy. Taste the mixture and add maple syrup or honey to taste if needed. This will really depend on the ripeness of both the bananas and blackberries – the riper they are the sweeter it will be.
Once smooth, serve immediately or pop into a cake tin or plastic tub and return to the freezer until ready to serve.
I should probably note that I used our Vitamix blender to make this, which is a high speed blender which can cope with the solid frozen fruit. If using a standard blender, you’ll need to add some liquid (any kind of dairy or non-dairy milk or cream would work well) to loosen the mixture a little while blending. You can then freeze as above until ready to serve. I was lucky enough to win the Vitamix in a competition earlier this year, and I am so impressed with it, it’s an absolutely fantastic piece of kit!
If you enjoyed this recipe, you may also like my Neopolitan Banana Ice Cream and Two Ingredient Banana Choc-Chip Ice Cream recipes. If you’d like some ways to use up blackberries, you might also like my Simple Blackberry Yoghurt Parfait recipe or these recipes from some of my blogging friends: Blackberry & Fig Jam from Natural Kitchen Adventures, gluten free Fig & Blackberry Crumble from Franglais Kitchen, Black Forest Chocolate Brownies from Sew White, Blackberry Ripple No Churn Ice Cream from The Called it the Diamond Blog, Blackberry, Coconut & Rose Barfi from Tin and Thyme or Blackberry, Banana & Oat Breakfast Popsicles from Veggie Desserts.
Disclosure: This post contains some Amazon affiliate links; I may receive commission on items purchased through the links.