Coffee Heath Bar Ice Cream

My absolute most favoritest (yes I meant to say that) of all candy bars growing up was the Heath Bar. To this day I have what one might call “self control issues” when confronted with them, or any English toffee for that matter. (You know those cute little crunchy toffee bars in a box of See’s? Same thing.) So when my young friend Audrey (our summer intern) came by this week to help me with some cooking and mentioned she had been making a homemade version of Ben and Jerry’s Coffee Heath Bar Crunch, my brain practically short-circuited, the synapses were so lit up with their version of a happy dance. Here’s Audrey’s recipe, a classic custard base, infused with coffee, churned and then mixed in with broken up Heath bars before freezing. Enjoy!

Coffee Heath Bar Ice Cream Recipe

  • Yield: Makes a little more than a quart.

The "via" instant coffee packs at Starbucks work great for this recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 1/2 cups cream
  • 1/3 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee granules
  • 1/2 teaspoon espresso powder (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 4 ounces of Heath bars or other English toffee

Method

1 Combine the milk, 1 1/2 cups of the cream, sugar, brown sugar, instant coffee, espresso powder (if using), vanilla and salt in a medium saucepan. Heat the base until it begins to steam, whisking continuously.

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2 When the base begins to steam, pour one- half cup out of the pan and into the egg yolks, whisk immediately. When completely combined, add the yolk mixture back into the rest of the of the base, and heat until the mixture reaches 170°F, or until it coats the back of a spoon.

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3 Remove immediately from heat and pour through a fine mesh sieve. Add in the remaining cup of cold cream and let chill for several hours, preferably overnight.

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4 Hit heath bars (still in their wrappers) repeatedly with the back of a wooden spoon, until they are thoroughly crushed. (You can also put the toffee into a plastic or paper bag and do the same.) Place heath bar pieces into a container and freeze while you churn the ice cream.

5 Pour the base into an ice cream maker and churn according to your ice cream maker manufacturer's instructions. Remove ice cream and stir in heath bar pieces.

Links:

How to make ice cream without a machine - great instructions by David Lebovitz

48 Comments

  1. Ellen

    uhmm yummm. Heath bars, coffee ice cream! Time to break out the ice cream maker!

  2. Janie

    This looks great! But, what if you don’t like coffee? Can I just leave that part out?

    Sure, just add a teaspoon of vanilla extract to the base. ~Elise

  3. Blog is the New Black

    tHIS LOOKS AMAZING!!

  4. LizD

    Just when I was thinking that I needed to make some ice cream. I love heath bars and my husband loves coffee ice cream. Your coffee, cookie and mount gay ice cream is his favorite so far, but I think this may be in the running for a new favorite. Thanks for the ice cream flavor of the week!

  5. lesterk

    You see? This is exactly why I can’t allow myself to buy an ice cream maker. I would never stop making recipes like this one.

  6. Anna

    Toffee Health bars are one of my favorites candies and ice cream flavors, too. I make espresso ice cream pretty regularly (without the candy, though), but I skip the cooking stuff (actually, I use the uncooked cream, milk, and egg custard base from the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream cookbook, but with about half as much sugar).

    I get eggs from a local backyard flock so I know they are safe to eat raw (I have these raw eggs in smoothies several times a week and make mayonnaise, Caesar dressing, and other classics from them, too). With chilled ingredients and no cooking, I can whisk the ingredients together and put the custard into the freezer bowl to churn right away – no need to wait for the mixture to chill. From start to finish I have soft-serve consistency in less than 45 minutes (hard “scoop” ice cream needs to ripen in a shallow container in the freezer for an hour or two). I often start the ice cream at 4pm and it is the right consistency for scooping after dinner.

  7. Donna

    My husbands HATES coffee! Do you think I could omit the coffee and espresso without it being to bland? Maybe some chocolate?

    Chocolate, vanilla, sure. You could even make a caramel flavored base and add the Heath Bars. ~Elise

  8. Kelly Hartman

    Oh my. coffee ice cream is my absolute favorite! Amazing. I HAVE to try it!

  9. Lisa

    B&J’s Coffee Toffee is my very favorite ice cream.

    When you use the Starbuck’s Via for this, is it for the espresso powder or for the instant coffee ingredients? Can you get away with just using the Via? (I’m guessing yes)

    We used the Via for the instant coffee and added some espresso powder just to make it more intense. You could just use the Via if you wanted. ~Elise

  10. Katrina

    I am in love with this! Perfect for summer :)

  11. Magda

    I love the look of this ice cream and I have to give it a try. I can’t find this type of candy though where I live. Can I omit it from the recipe? Will I have to add something else to it?
    Thanks!

    Use English toffee, any brand. Or omit and just have plain coffee ice cream. Great with some caramel sauce. ~Elise

  12. Dianne

    This is torture! I put the bowl of my ice cream maker in the freezer last sunday. The darn thing will not freeze! Everything else in my freezer is fine. Now you post this incredible recipe…..someone is trying to tell me something.

  13. ASHLEA

    I LOVE heath bars. Gosh, I wish I had a bowl of this right now. Looks so great!

  14. Fallon

    One of my favorite B&J flavors as well! I always like to dig for the heath bar chunks and leave nothing behind. hehe

  15. zee

    What icecream maker did you use? Is it a KitchenAid attachment that I could use with my mixer? Any you’d recommend? This recipe is so tempting to try but I don’t want to skimp out on an unreliable maker.

    I know people who use the KitchenAid attachment without trouble. I use a cuisinart brand. I actually have two different ice cream makers, one that was less than $50 which requires you to freeze the bowl in advance, and another that was more than $200 that does not require any pre-freezing. Both work fine. The expensive one is really noisy and takes longer to churn the ice cream. ~Elise

  16. Leslie

    Yum!!!

    This has to be Ryan’s favorite combination of flavors! I can’t wait to try it out for his birthday.

  17. Misa

    Wow, it looks absolutely delicious! I love ice cream and home made on is the best! I have to give it a try!! And I love your food photos. Beautiful.

  18. S.

    Thank you Audrey! This looks like it tastes so good!

  19. Lindsey

    Ice cream maker container is going in the freezer right now.

  20. Jean

    Is there a way to make this without eggs?

    Yes, but it won’t be as creamy. The eggs help the ice cream from getting too icy. Look for a coffee ice cream recipe online, one that doesn’t use eggs, and just fold in the heath bar bits at the end. ~Elise

  21. woodleypark-zoo

    Re: Heath, it makes me think of ‘better than sex chocolate cake‘ which I learned of in High School and became my ‘signature’ treat to make all the time. I think nowadays I wouldn’t be inclined to using Cool Whip but I might make a more from-scratch version someday! You should try it, it really is a DELECTABLE combination!

    And I will totally try YOUR recipe, when I finally get an ice cream maker…

  22. Rita

    This sounds so good. I want to buy an ice cream maker. Thanks for the info on the ice cream makers too Elise. I was thinking of buying the expensive one, but I think I’ll get the one where you freeze the bowl since I just bought a separate freezer.

    If you have the freezer space, and you only plan on making one batch of ice cream at a time, I think it does make the most sense to get the one where you freeze the bowl. It’s the one I use most often. ~Elise

  23. Sally

    Ben and Jerry’s Coffee Heath Bar Crunch and Vanilla Heath Bar Crunch are two of my favorite ice creams. I’ll be trying this, with and without the coffee.

  24. Mary

    mmm yum yum yum. If there was ever a reason to buy an ice cream maker, this is it! Thanks for sharing.

  25. Jonathan

    This looks great, but I was hoping you could clarify what exactly ‘Health Bars’ are (we don’t have a clue in New Zealand)? Clearly they’re some kind of toffee, but are they brittle rather than chewy? Thanks!

    They’re an English toffee candy bar, a brittle toffee coated with chocolate. ~Elise

  26. Judith B.

    Thanks so much for the recipe; what a winning combination – definitely trying.

    In a reply to Magda – try putting your ice cream container in the far back of your freezer where it is the coldest – hopefully it will freeze. I also recently read that you should store the container (in the freezer) into a plastic bag (prevents freezer burn) but putting it in a bag might also improve the freezing process…just sayin…

  27. Lisa

    Heath Bars were my favorite too….until I tried Skor Bars!….brittle toffee w/ chocolate like Heath, but even more amazing!!

  28. Kathleen

    Oh yes, say it; coffee ice cream and heath bars; bring it/must make soon. Thank you.

  29. Annie

    waho its a good recipe. I will try this also

  30. Oui, Chef

    I want to kiss you for this one, Elise. Coffee and Heath are two of my favorite flavors and I bet they’re amazing together. been having lots of fun with my ice cream machine over the past few weeks, and this great recipe just jumped to the front of the line. – S

  31. Lenore

    Oh, I looooove variants on coffee ice cream! Adding it to my list of ice cream flavors to make this summer :)

  32. Angela

    This ice cream recipe is a keeper!!

  33. Rebecca

    I’m obsessed with coffee heath bar ice cream – just stuck my freezer bowl in the freezer so I can make this tomorrow! You always have a knack for knowing just what I want to make . . . love your blog.

  34. Heather

    What kind of cream do you use? Light or heavy?

    Heavy whipping cream is best. ~Elise

  35. Tomato

    Oh! I most certainly have to make this! Thanks for the fantastic idea :)

  36. Marie M.C.

    I’m not an ice cream kinda gal. Sometimes when the weather is super hot I’ll get a craving. My favorite has always been Haagen Das coffee. Recently a friend insisted, practically forced some Ben & Jerry’s Coffee Heath Bar ice cream down my throat. OMG. You have to try it. (No, I do not work for Ben or Jerry.) The Ben & Jerry ice cream tastes like it’s more of an espresso coffee to me. But no matter how tempting this recipe is, I can’t make it. Because I would not be able to stop eating it. It’s that good. *Sob.*

  37. Tori

    I made this tonight – I used the Starbuck’s French Roast Via packet. It was mighty good! I’ll definitely be making this again. Thanks for the recipe!

  38. Sharlene

    This may be a silly question, but should I use 2tsp of instant powdered coffee, or 2tsp of liquid prepared instant coffee?

    Good question! Use the powder or granules. I’ve now made the ingredient list more clear, thank you. ~Elise

  39. andrea

    Great recipe!

  40. ML Chan

    Loved the recipe. With Halloween around the corner I saw a bag of small bars of Heath Bars. I crushed a few to put in the ice cream but I also have these cute little bars to stick into a scoop when I serve it.

  41. Sammy

    Thanks so much for this, Elise! My boyfriend and I made it last week and it was a huge hit. We used fresh ground coffee that was as fine a ground as you can get…like powder. It was the best, most intensely coffee flavored ice cream I’ve ever had, and the heath bars just sent it out of the park!

  42. Marie M.C.

    Sammy — I’m sure the recipe calls for INSTANT coffee and INSTANT espresso but looks like it works with the real deal coffee — very finely ground, too. Did you strain the grounds out?

  43. Lisa A.

    I am pregnant and avoiding caffeine. I don’t drink coffee, but I love coffee ice cream. Has anyone tried this with decaf coffee, is there a decaf brand anyone would recommend to use for the recipe? Thank you.

    One of the reasons I love homemade coffee ice cream is that you can make it with decaf. Use your favorite brand. ~Elise

  44. Kathy S.

    This ice cream sounds divine! I need some clarification for making a non-coffee version of this recipe. In answer to the person who doesn’t like coffee and asked if they could leave that part out you stated, “Sure, just add a teaspoon of vanilla extract to the base.” Since the recipe already calls for 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla does this mean you increase the vanilla to 1 teaspoon? Or does it mean you add an additional teaspoon for a total of 1-1/2 teaspoons of vanilla?

    Either way, it depends on how vanilla-y you want the ice cream to be. I would add a full teaspoon in addition to the 1/2 called for in the recipe. ~Elise

  45. Lisa A.

    Elise, I made this today. I used the Via decaf Italian roast. It turned out delicious. Still had great coffee taste. Thank you for posting this recipe. I am going to try it with dark chocolate chunks the next time I make it.

  46. Donna

    FOR the Europe-dwellers…DAIM toffee bars are an EXCELLENT choice to replace the Heath toffee bar….Easy to obtain in France, Italy and Switzerland!

  47. Kathy

    Would 1% milk be appropriate for this recipe? When a recipe calls for milk I’m not sure which type to use. I always have 1% on hand, but wasn’t sure if that mixes well with the heavy cream. I would assume you would have to use whole milk. Thanks

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