Spice and Ice: Earl Grey Cardamom Ice Cream

Spice and Ice: Earl Grey Cardamom Ice Cream

Summertime is for sunshine and frozen treats. If you like chai or Earl Grey tea, you’ll love this lightly spiced spin on kulfi, which is a type of Indian ice cream. Nothing beats homemade dessert.

You can enjoy this Earl Grey cardamom ice cream as a sweet ending to an Indian meal, but any occasion will do. The real beauty of this recipe is that no ice cream machine is required; you’ll aerate the ice cream by whipping heavy cream and folding the spiced milk mixture into it.

Closeup of two scoops of Earl Grey Cardamom Ice Cream sprinkled with pistachios in a glass dish.

Making this ice cream is a simple process since most of the time spent on the recipe is “hands-off.” Once you put the tea and spices into the milk, it will steep without your attention. After the whole recipe is mixed, it will firm up in the freezer while you do other things.

The dessert is made with Earl Grey tea, my personal favorite. Earl Grey tea is flavored with Bergamot, which is an oil extracted from the rind of Bergamot oranges. This lends a bright citrus punch to the tea, making it perfect for this summer recipe because it balances the warm spice of the pepper, cinnamon, and cardamom. Plum Deluxe’s Mindful Morning Blend is a great choice for this recipe, as it has a hint of vanilla as well.

Tea and spices steeping in milk.

Whipped cream is folded into the milk and tea mixture.

Earl Grey Cardamom Ice Cream


  • 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated whole milk
  • 1 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons loose Earl Grey Tea (or contents of 4-5 Earl Grey tea bags)
  • 4 whole black peppercorns, cracked
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/3 cup chopped pistachio nuts (optional)


Heat the evaporated milk on the stove to a low simmer. Do not boil.

Add the tea, peppercorns, and cardamom to the pot and stir. Then turn off the heat and let steep for 25-30 minutes.

After steeping, strain the milk through a sieve or coffee filter, depending on the particle size of your tea. Ideally, it should not have any large flecks.

Whisk the can of sweetened condensed milk into the strained milk.

Beat the heavy cream until light and fluffy, then gently fold the milk mixture into it. Do not overmix or your ice cream will go flat.

Put the finished mixture into a freezer-safe container and chill until firm enough (about 3 hours) to dip into small serving bowls. It’s rich, so just a scoop or two will do. Sprinkle chopped pistachios to taste on each serving.

Two scoops of Earl Grey Cardamom Ice Cream sprinkled with pistachios in a glass dish.

All images courtesy of the author.

Spice and Ice: Earl Grey Cardamom Ice Cream

A Guest Writer

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