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Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream Bars

Must Try

These strawberry shortcake ice cream bars put a homemade spin on a childhood favorite! With a creamy strawberry inside and crunchy shortcake bits on the outside, they’re sure to be a hit.

Homemade strawberry shortcake ice cream bars are even better than the store-bought ones you enjoyed as a child. (And hey—you might also enjoy them as an adult! No judgment here.) 
While the boxed version can be a bit cloying, my from-scratch recipe uses strawberry jam and freeze-dried strawberries, which gives them more natural berry flavor (just like real strawberry shortcake!) and pretty blush color. 
It’s a little more work to make your own strawberry ice cream bars, but trust me when I say: it is SO worth it!

Why You’ll Love This Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream Bars Recipe

Nostalgic flavor. These ice cream bars will transport you to those summer days of childhood when you’d spend all afternoon waiting to hear the sound of the ice cream truck turning the corner onto your street.
Fresh ingredients. Using strawberry jam and crushed freeze-dried strawberries instead of artificial coloring and flavor makes this recipe for strawberry shortcake ice cream bars extra delicious!
Easier than you think. Okay, not quite as easy as picking up a box at the grocery store, but there’s nothing about the process of making these bars that’s difficult.

What You’ll Need
Scroll down to the recipe card to find the ingredient quantities and recipe instructions.
Ice Cream Bars:

Heavy cream – Don’t skimp here! You need the fat in the heavy cream for that rich texture.
Sweetened condensed milk – Be sure to buy condensed milk, not evaporated milk.
Cream cheese – Use the kind that comes in blocks, not tubs.
Vanilla extract
Strawberry jam – Any brand you like will work.

Strawberry Shortbread Coating:

Nilla wafers – For the crunchy bits!
Freeze-dried strawberries – These add lots of sweet-tart strawberry flavor.
Butter 

How to Make Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream Bars

Blend. Combine all of the ice cream bar ingredients in a blender. Blend on low speed until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed.
Freeze. Divide the ice cream mixture into 12 popsicle molds. Freeze for 8 hours. 

Make the strawberry shortcake coating. Add all of the ingredients to a food processor and pulse to form crumbs. Transfer to a large shallow bowl.
Thaw (a little). Take the ice cream bars out of their molds and arrange them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Allow the ice cream bars to thaw for a couple of minutes.  
Coat the strawberry ice cream bars. Dip each bar into the crumb mixture, making sure they’re coated on all sides.
Freeze. Return the bars to the freezer for 15 minutes or until ready to serve. 

Tips for Success

Soften the cream cheese. This helps it mix smoothly and evenly into the rest of the strawberry shortcake ice cream bar ingredients.
Quality matters. Use high-quality strawberry jam for the ice cream bars. The better the jam, the more authentic the strawberry flavor will be.
Patience is key. Allow the ice cream bars to fully freeze, ideally overnight, before attempting to coat them. This ensures that they are solid enough to withstand dipping in the strawberry shortcake coating without falling apart.
Coat evenly. To ensure an even coating of the strawberry shortcake mixture, gently press the crumbs onto the surface of each bar after rolling. Repeat this process as needed to cover any emtpy spots, especially on the sides of the bars.

Variations

Make them vegan. Use coconut milk for the heavy cream, then swap in plant-based condensed milk, cream cheese, vanilla wafers, and butter.
Make them gluten-free. Swap out the Nilla wafers for gluten-free shortbread cookies or vanilla wafers.
Try different flavors. Experiment with different flavors of jam and freeze-dried fruit to create your own unique ice cream bars. Raspberry bars would be amazing!

How to Store
Once you’ve coated your strawberry shortcake ice cream bars and allowed them to set in the freezer for 15 minutes, wrap each bar individually in plastic wrap. After wrapping, place them in an airtight container or a zip-top freezer bag and store for up to 3 weeks. 

More Recipes for Strawberry Lovers 

Prep: 15 minutes minutesFreezing Time: 8 hours hours 15 minutes minutesTotal: 8 hours hours 30 minutes minutes

For the ice cream bars:2 cups heavy cream1 (14-ounce) can of sweetened condensed milk¼ cup cream cheese softened at room temperature1 teaspoon vanilla3 tablespoons strawberry jamFor the strawberry shortbread coating:2 cups Nilla wafers¾ cup freeze-dried strawberries3 tablespoons butter melted
Add the heavy cream, sweetened condensed milk, cream cheese, vanilla extract, and strawberry jam to a blender. Blend on low speed until combined, scraping down the sides of the blender if needed.Distribute the contents of the blender evenly between 12 popsicle molds (more or less depending on the size of your popsicle molds). Pop the filled molds into the freezer and freeze for 8 hours.Add the Nilla wafers, freeze-dried strawberries, and butter to a food processor. Pulse to make fine crumbs. Transfer the coating to a shallow bowl and set aside.Take the ice cream bars out of their molds (it can be helpful to run them under hot water for a few seconds to loosen them up) and arrange them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Allow the ice cream bars to thaw for a couple of minutes.Roll an ice cream bar in the strawberry shortcake coating to, well, coat it in strawberry shortcake coating. Return the ice cream bar to the baking sheet and repeat with the remaining bars. If the coating is having a hard time adhering to the bars, allow them to thaw for a bit longer and then attempt to coat them again.Return the bars to the freezer for 15 minutes or until ready to serve.
Calories: 440kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 69mg | Sodium: 165mg | Potassium: 384mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 37g | Vitamin A: 822IU | Vitamin C: 182mg | Calcium: 130mg | Iron: 3mg

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