After getting my hands on some of Biscoff’s spiced cookie spread, I wasn’t sure what to do with it, because it tasted like graham crackers but was smooth like peanut butter. It reminded me of a graham cracker crust on a strawberry cheesecake, so I decided to transform it into an ingredient in a strawberry cheesecake ice cream. First, spread the cookie butter into a thin layer on a baking sheet and put it in the freezer to harden. Then make a sweet strawberry sauce. The ice cream base of cream cheese, milk, sugar, and lemon juice comes together quickly in a blender and is frozen in an ice cream maker. Finally, the hardened pieces of cookie spread and the strawberry sauce are swirled in and it’s all frozen together until ready to eat.
What to buy: While testing this recipe, we used both Biscoff’s spiced cookie spread and Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter, with equally excellent results.
Game plan: Be sure to get the bowl of your ice cream maker in the freezer and fully frozen before starting this recipe.
The strawberry mixture can be refrigerated in a container with a tightfitting lid for up to 3 weeks.
This recipe was featured as part of our Summer Strawberry Desserts.
- Yield: About 1 quart
- Difficulty: Easy
- Total: 30 mins, plus 1 hr 15 mins cooling and chilling time
- 1/2 cup spiced cookie butter or spread
- 8 ounces strawberries, washed, hulled, and cut into large dice
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest (from about 1 medium lemon)
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 2 medium lemons)
- 1 cup whole milk
- 8 ounces cream cheese
- Spread the cookie butter on a sheet of parchment paper using an offset or rubber spatula, shaping it into a roughly 10-by-6-inch rectangle. Transfer the parchment to a baking sheet and place it in the freezer until the cookie butter is stiff and pieces easily tear off, at least 2 hours. (It will not be completely frozen.)
- Meanwhile, place the strawberries and 1/3 cup of the sugar in a small, nonreactive saucepan and stir to coat the strawberries with the sugar. Mash with a potato masher until about half of the strawberries are completely smashed but some medium-sized chunks remain, about 1 minute.
- Place the pan over high heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until bubbles form along the edge, about 3 minutes. Skim any foam from the surface of the sauce with a spoon and discard. Add 1/2 teaspoon of the lemon zest and 1 1/2 teaspoons of the lemon juice and stir to combine. Bring to a full boil, cooking until foam coats the surface, about 1 minute.
- Remove from the heat and skim and discard the foam. Transfer the sauce to a medium heatproof bowl and let it cool to room temperature, about 45 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until completely chilled, at least 1 hour.
- When the cookie butter and strawberries are ready, place the remaining teaspoon of lemon zest, the remaining tablespoon of lemon juice, the remaining 2/3 cup of sugar, the milk, and the cream cheese in a blender and blend until smooth. Immediately freeze in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions. Keep the ice cream in the bowl of the ice cream maker.
- Remove the cookie butter from the freezer, tear it into rough 1- to 2-inch pieces, and fold them into the finished ice cream with a rubber spatula. (Work quickly, as the cookie butter will soften and be difficult to handle as it warms up.)
- Add the chilled strawberry sauce and fold just until a thick swirl is visible. Serve immediately for a soft ice cream, or transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and freeze until solid. Allow the ice cream to sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving if frozen solid. The ice cream can be kept for up to 2 weeks.