What’s better than a few scoops of ice cream on a hot summer day? Layers of ice cream stacked up in a cake. Here we pile up three flavors—fresh strawberry, vanilla bean, and roasted pistachio—and finish everything with a crunchy layer of crushed vanilla cookies, for a dessert that’s quintessential summer. And if you’re not feeling up to homemade ice cream, just sub in good-quality store-bought versions of each flavor.

Game plan: After each layer is prepped, it’s necessary to freeze the cake, so you’ll want to soften each ice cream flavor as you’re ready to use it, rather than all at once.

This recipe was featured as part of our Play It Cool menu.

  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Total: 10 mins, plus freezing time 
  • Active: 10 mins 

Ingredients (5)

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup ground vanilla wafer cookies (about 20 cookies)
  • 2 cups Fresh Strawberry Ice Cream, softened
  • 2 cups Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, softened
  • 2 cups Roasted Pistachio Ice Cream, softened


  1. Coat a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with butter and line it with plastic wrap, overlapping pieces as needed to completely cover the bottom and sides and leaving at least a 2-inch overhang. Mix the melted butter with the ground cookies until the cookies are thoroughly moistened, then press the mixture evenly into the bottom of the loaf pan. Let set up at least 5 minutes before proceeding.
  2. Evenly spread the strawberry ice cream on top of the ground cookies and put the loaf pan in the freezer until the ice cream is firm, at least 2 hours.
  3. Evenly spread the vanilla ice cream on top of the strawberry ice cream and return the pan to the freezer until the ice cream is firm, at least 2 hours.
  4. Top with the pistachio ice cream and cover with the plastic-wrap overhang. Put the pan back in the freezer until the ice cream is firm, at least 4 hours.
  5. To serve, unwrap the ice cream cake and pull it out of the loaf pan. Remove the plastic wrap and, using a knife dipped in hot water and wiped dry, slice into 1-inch slabs.