July 07, 2009

Wheeler's pear balsamic vinegar ice cream recipe

© 2009 Andrea's easy vegan cooking
As part of a virtual book by Wheeler's Ice Cream, I've made ice cream using an exclusive recipe Wheeler's sent me to use and share with my sweet-toothed readers. Wheeler's published "Vegan Scoop," a vegan ice cream cookbook, in June, thus enabling premium vegan ice cream-making at home. Although I've never personally tasted Wheeler's ice cream, I've read the reviews by others who've raved about it, so I was very excited to try a Wheeler's recipe. And the combination of pear juice and balsamic vinegar is intriguing, don't you agree?
Now, if you've read this blog before (or noticed the title), you know I prefer to keep my recipes easy without compromising quality or taste. Sometimes the definition of easy gets confused with the definition of fast, though I do my best to keep those two words united. The yummy mango ice cream I posted about recently, for example, was easy and fast. The Wheeler's ice cream was very easy to make, but required cooking and chilling prior to the actual freezing, making it easy but not fast. These two extra steps can be a deal breaker for me because it means planning ahead — cooking and chilling the night before the actual freezing when I'm more inclined to be chilling and not cooking, if you know what I mean. (see note)

One thing I have to mention is that although I followed the directions, and the finished ice cream tasted rich and flavorful, in my ice cream freezer it came out a little icy, and after freezer storage it was very hard and icy. I really don't know why this happened. When I make cashew-cream and fruit ice cream, it comes out smooth and creamy and stays creamy even after freezing. I haven't seen this noted in other reviews so it could be my ice cream freezer isn't suited to this recipe. Also, be aware that the combination of the pear juice and sugar made for a very sweet product. Even my husband, who likes his desserts sweet, thought it was extremely sweet. Adjust accordingly.
© 2009 Andrea's easy vegan cooking
Pear Balsamic Vinegar ice cream
  • 1 cup (235 ml) soy milk, divided
  • 2 tablespoons (16 g) arrowroot
  • 2 cups pear juice
  • 2 cups (470 ml) soy creamer
  • 3/4 cup (150 g) sugar
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) vanilla extract
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  1. In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup (60 ml) soymilk with arrowroot and set aside.
  2. Mix soy creamer, remaining 3/4 cup (175 ml) soymilk, pear juice, and sugar in a saucepan and cook over low heat. Once mixture begins to boil, remove from heat and immediately add arrowroot cream. This will cause the liquid to thicken noticeably.
  3. Add vanilla extract and balsamic vinegar.
  4. Refrigerate mixture several hours until chilled. (*see note) Freeze according to your ice cream maker's instructions.
Yield: 1 quart (approximately 600 g)

note: After 2 hours my mix was still ver
y warm. After 3 hours it was sort of cool but not cold enough to make ice cream. I ended up letting it chill for about eight hours. I recommend making the mix the night before you plan to use it, or early in the morning of the evening you'll be making ice cream.

The other thing about this recipe is it uses an ingredient I don't normally use or recommend - soy creamer. The only brand I could find was Silk, and I'm a little down on that company (agri-giant Dean Foods) right now. The creamer wasn't organic and it had ingredients I don't like to use. But, if you don't share these qualms, have access to a better soy creamer, make your own creamer or don't mind compromising your standards occasionally, give this ice cream a try.


  1. This sounds like an amazing flavour combination!
    I've also had issues with my ice cream in the past and I realized that it helps to add a lot of fat to the recipe (for example coconut milk or as in your case, cashews). And I also think that arrowroot isn't the best thickener for ice cream recipes, I have had better results with cornstarch.

  2. The soy creamer issue has been my biggest problem with the recipes too. I prefer to make soy-free desserts with either nuts or coconut, as they do turn out creamier.

    I think the creamy factor can be even more difficult with at-home ice cream makers too.

  3. Mihl,
    I thought the creamer was adding extra fat, but maybe not enough. Interesting about the corn starch. I thought arrowroot and corn starch were interchangeable unless you planned to reheat the food.

    I've found that using cashews and frozen fruit gives me really creamy results. Adding a banana seems to help, too. When I use a liquid base, the ice cream tends to be grainy. I was really expecting this ice cream to be great, based on other reviews, so I was a little disappointed.

  4. Hmmm, interesting results, and the main reason I haven't purchased this book is the use of soy creamer. I would use coconut milk instead of the creamer. And if you're not soyfree, silken tofu works really well.

  5. Diann,
    I considered using coconut milk but I wanted to use the actual recipe Wheeler's provided, and I was curious about how it would turn out.

  6. I've never tried making icecream, probably because I don't have an icecream maker! However, since my favourite ice cream (Swedish Glace) has had a change of recipe and is now not great, I'm tempted! Especially by cashew icecream. I think I could become addicted to that!

  7. Sounds like a gorgeous combination of flavors. Do you suppose the quality of the balsamic could impact the sweetness?

    I'm interested in the results... the soy creamer seems odd to me, although it's probably for mouth feel. Coconut milk sounds like a great alternative, though (kudos to Diann for thag suggestion)... might try it that way!

  8. Penny,
    Just get a vitamix, then you won't need an ice cream maker! :D (wouldn't we all like one of those...)

    I agree. Using coconut milk would be a good substitute. (The soy creamer would be instead of dairy cream, to give a rich flavor.)

  9. Sounds delicious, anyway! I love pear and balsamic together. Though I agree, I think this would be too sweet for me!

  10. pear & balsamic does sound interesting. Wheeler's came to seattle to give samples of their ice cream, but it was an odd event - or so I heard because I had to do some dog errands and missed it :(

    I had a sandwich from quickies this week and it had lots of potato salad in it. no mac 'n yease because that location never has it.

  11. Ricki,
    I liked the pear flavor but I do think I'll reduce the sweetener if I make it again.

    Is Wheeler's available in Seattle?

    You have to go to the Sunday brunch at the Capital Hill Quickie's. It's really good!

  12. I just got "Vegan Scoop" and can't wait to try some recipes from it. I never tried any of Wheeler's ice cream before but I've read great reviews.

    Pear and balsamic is such an interesting combination for a dessert. I bet it's delicious though.

  13. It sounds really good Andrea. My mouth started watering when I saw it. I know what you mean about it coming out frozen rather than creamy. My last ice cream came out like that, but it comes right if you leave it out long enough before you attempt to scoop it. It is a bit of a pain though, not good for an instant fix :)

  14. Kiersten,
    The taste was good but sweet but I had trouble with the texture. I hope your ice cream comes out well. I'd love to hear about it.

    The problem was that this ice cream came out grainy and icy from the ice cream maker so it was never creamy and smooth. I should try it again to see if it works better. Or maybe I'll try the flavor combo with a cashew-based formula!

  15. Gauri Radha गौरी राधा5/7/11, 2:21 AM

    Lovely photos!
    This sounds like a very interesting vegan ice-cream.


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