As we approach the end of August and the start of September (really where has this year gone?!), what better way to savor summer than with ice cream. These Vegan Peach Ice Cream Bars are a great way to use up ripe, in-season peaches. Complete with a graham cracker-based cookie and coconut ice cream, they’re rich, creamy, cold, and fruity. Who doesn’t love peaches and cream?!
dairy free no-churn ice cream
I must confess, making no-churn ice cream is a bit intimidating and takes a touch of patience. A lot of no-churn ice cream can end up icy in texture.
This is because of how much water is in the mixture. How do you avoid this, you ask? Steer clear of unwanted icy-ness by making sure the base has enough fat and sugar. The fat in the recipe comes from coconut cream, and sugar comes from….haha sugar. It’s very important to drain any liquid or water out of the coconut cream cans.
creamy dairy free ice cream
So I did a bit of experimenting. I saw a lot of non vegan recipes actually use gelatin to prevent the ice cream from hardening up too much. I thought…”hey, maybe pectin will do something similar??” So I tried it out. To be honest, not really sure if this did much. It definitely didn’t hurt the mixture, but this is an optional add-in. I’ve also seen people add a little alcohol to the mix to keep the dairy free ice cream softer, but have yet to try this method.
soft graham cracker cookies
I’m definitely a cookie girl, so I’m a bit biased when I say the cookie bars on these are HEAVENLY. Vegan graham crackers are the base of this cookie and the flavor is unmatchable! I also recommend using vegetable oil since it will keep the cookie softer in the freezer. Other fats, like vegan butter or coconut oil, will freeze up harder and won’t be as soft straight out of the freezer. Another cookie pro tip: add in some cream of tartar to keep the cookie nice and soft, even in the freezer.
making the vegan peaches and cream ice cream
The key to these ice cream bars is a bit of patience…which is hard when everything smells and looks sooo tasty while you’re making them. To start, you’ll want to make the ice cream base by whisking the coconut cream, pureed peaches, vanilla, fruit pectin, and sugar together in a stand mixer.
Don’t forget to set aside half of the pureed peaches and a few diced peaches which we’ll use later in the recipe! After whisking up the cream, fold in 3/4s of the diced peaches. Pour the mixture into a shallow but wide container. This will help it cool down in the freezer faster.
While the cream is setting up a bit in the freezer, you’ll want to bake the cookies. You’ll basically bake two thin large square cookies, which will be the top and the bottom of the bars. Let the cookies fully cool before trying to assemble the bars. Or it will be a bit of a melty mess…
assembling the vegan ice cream bars
To make the bars, you’ll want to place one of the square cookies at the bottom of a parchment-lined baking pan. Go ahead and remove the cream mixture from the freezer. Give it a stir to mix the diced peaches around, as they may have settled at the bottom.
Pour about 1 inch of the cream on top of the cookie. It’s okay if the mixture goes over the sides slightly since we’ll cut the edges at the end! Remember the peach puree and diced peaches we set aside from earlier? Well, now you’re gonna swirl them both around the top. And then top everything off with the other cookie.
After freezing and firming up for another few hours or overnight, the bars are finally ready to be devoured! These are oh so creamy, rich, and buttery, yet fresh with a light peach flavor. These Vegan Peach Ice Cream Bars are the perfect end-of-summer treat to help you cool down after a day in the sun.
If any are leftover, they can be tightly wrapped and stored in the freezer for 7 days.
tips and tricks for the best ice cream bars
By using cream of tartar and vegetable oil, the cookies stay very soft- even when frozen. If you use another type of fat, like vegan butter or coconut oil, the cookies will freeze harder.
No, you don’t. You can definitely make this recipe by mixing with a hand mixer or with a spoon
Unfortunately, like most no-churn ice cream recipes, the trick to creamy ice cream is a bit of patience. If you want to speed up the freezing time, you could separate the cream base into smaller containers to help is set up quicker.
looking for more delicious vegan summer treats?
- Cookie Dough Nice Cream
- Vegan Strawberry Crunch Cake
- Brown Sugar Strawberry Shortcake
- Almond Blueberry Biscotti
- Lemon Poppyseed Muffins
Did you make this recipe? I’d love to know! Leave a rating and comment below!
Vegan Peaches & Cream Ice Cream Bars
Peachy, creamy, sweet, & buttery. These Vegan Peach Ice Cream Bars are an end of summer treat and a great way to use up some peaches while they’re in season.
Ice Cream Base
- 2 13.5 oz cans of coconut cream, drained of any liquid
- 6 peaches, 4 whole peaches pureed (divided), 2 whole peaches diced into small pieces (divided) *
- 2 tsp vanilla
- ½ tsp fruit pectin , optional **
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¾ cup all purpose flour
- ¾ cup graham crackers , blended into a fine powder ***
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ¼ cup agave nectar
- 1 tbsp coconut sugar, or sub granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- ¼ tsp cream of tartar
To make the ice cream:
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the coconut cream, half of the pureed peaches, vanilla, fruit pectin, and granulated sugar.
- Whip the mixture together in a stand mixer or with hand beaters until frothy and slightly thickened. Fold in half the diced peaches. Place the remaining 1 cup peach puree, and the remaining diced peaches in the fridge for later when assembling the bars.
- Transfer the ice cream mixture to a wide and shallow container (to help it freeze and set up faster). Place in the freezer and chill for 1-2 hours to help the mixture thicken, but do not let it freeze completely. The mixture should still be spreadable and pourable after 1-2 hours.
To make the cookies:
- While the ice cream is setting up, make the cookies.
- Preheat the oven for 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Combine the flour, graham cracker powder, baking powder, coconut sugar, and cream of tartar together in a medium bowl.
- Add the oil, agave nectar, and vanilla.
- Stir until a soft dough ball forms.
- Divide the dough in two and roll out into two 8” squares.
- Bake the squares on a parchment lined baking pan for 5 minutes.
- Let cool completely on a wire rack before assembling the ice cream bars.
To assemble the bars:
- Remove the ice cream mixture from the freezer. Give it a stir to re-mix the diced peaches that may have settled at the bottom.
- Line a 8 inch x 8 inch square baking dish with parchment paper. Place one of the cookie squares on the bottom.
- Pour about 1 inch of ice cream on top of the cookie.
- Evenly pour the remaining peach puree on top of the cream mixture.
- Sprinkle on the remaining diced peaches.
- Gently place the second cookie square on top. Cover with plastic wrap and place back in the freezer.
- Freeze the bars for another 4-6 hours, or until completely set up.
*You should have about 2 cups total of peach puree. Half will go into the coconut mixture, and the other half will be swirled onto the top during the assembly. The same goes for the diced peaches, half will go into the mixture and the other half will be sprinkled into the bars during assembly.
**Fruit pectin will help keep the ice cream a bit softer when frozen. This is optional. You could also use a few teaspoons of alcohol (vodka or white rum) to keep the ice cream from getting super hard.
*** I broke my graham crackers up into a blender and blended them into a fine flour.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1 bar
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 355Total Fat: 9gProtein: 3g
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