Fried Ice Cream — made in the Air Fryer

     The Instant Pot has a companion in my kitchen–the Air Fryer.  Together they have transformed how I prepare foods, without my noticing it was happening.  Last year, I bought the Bella 2.5 liter air fryer, and it has indeed been a game changer.
     From wings, to simple buttered toast, to fish fillets, hamburgers, bacon, grilled cheese sandwiches; you name it, I now rely on the air fryer.
air fryer
One weekend when it was bad weather outside, I attempted fried ice cream in the air fryer, and kept experimenting until I had a process that worked.  Here’s what worked:


FRIED ICE CREAM
STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE AIR FRYER
• Scoop ice cream into balls and freeze until hard.
• Coat in flour.
• Freeze until hard again.
• Coat in egg and then roll in slightly crushed cornflake cereal.
• If necessary, use your hands to squeeze the flakes into the ice cream and round out the shape.
• Freeze until hard again.
• Coat in egg and roll in crushed cereal again. If softened, freeze until hard.
• For frying, place on a small pan or piece of foil.
• Fry in air fryer for up to 2 minutes at 400F.
• Remove gently (because it will be soft on the inside) and eat immediately.
Tips and notes:
  • As you can tell from the steps, the key is to keep the ice cream frozen hard.  It’s not a quick process.
  • A 1 3/4 quart carton of ice cream made 16-17 small scoops.
  • My ice cream scoop is fairly small.  If you have a larger scoop, you might get an even better result than I did.  If so, please let us know in the comments.


Here are the steps in pictures:  
Make individual scoops of ice cream.  Freeze until hard.
Make individual scoops of ice cream
Coat ice cream in flour.  Freeze until hard.
Coat ice cream in flour
Dip in beaten egg, then cover with partly-crushed cereal flakes.  Freeze until hard.
(I’m using Aldi’s version of ‘Honey Bunches of Oats’. It makes a tasty shell.)
Dip in beaten egg then cover with partly-crushed cereal flakes
Press the flake-covered ice cream into a round ball and freeze until hard. 
(As you can see, the work surface gets a little messy.)
Press the flake-covered ice cream into a round ball and freeze until hard
[Do a second coating of egg + cornflakes.  Freeze hard again, if soft.]
For frying in the air fryer, put the ice cream on a little baking pan or piece of foil.
For frying in the air fryer put the ice cream on a little baking pan or piece of foil
Fry at 400F for up to 2 minutes; and maybe another 30 seconds, but that’s the max for these little scoops.  Any longer is likely to make your ice cream start to melt.
fried ice cream in fryer
Remove from the fryer with tongs and/or spatula, and eat immediately.  
fried ice cream done


Extras can be stored in the freezer to fry later.

Extras can be stored in the freezer to fry later
Get creative and try different things:
  • Drizzle sauce on the fried ice cream, such as caramel or chocolate sauce.
  • Top with goodies such as fruit, jam or sprinkles.
  • Try different flavored ice creams and cereals.

 

20 thoughts on “Fried Ice Cream — made in the Air Fryer

  1. We used to have an air fryer, but it died a few years back (only lasted three years). It was useful and well used, but its death coincided with us moving into a flat with a much smaller kitchen, so many appliances didn’t make it here (waiting in storage until we move some place bigger). Of all the stuff that we used to use and now can’t use, the air fryer is the only one I actually forgot about… Sorry! May be mine was different from yours, but anything I could do in it, I can do in my convection oven or under the grill. We tried doing fat free potato chips in it, but they tasted odd – something was missing – oh yes, fat! – the sunflower oil we cook them in normally.
    Although I must admit that fried ice cream sounds positively wicked and completely defying the laws of physics. 😁

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    1. I’m betting your air fryer was one of the round glass ones? I have one of those too, and I love it, but it doesn’t get as much use as this one. The air fryers basically are a convection oven with an extra-powerful fan. So if you already have a good convection oven, I can see why you wouldn’t get as much use from an air fryer. I don’t use a grill, but if you do, that would definitely be another duplicate for some purposes. I too have tried the ‘oil-less’ chips in the air fryer, and wasn’t happy with the result. But the fryer makes up for it in other ways for me. From freezer dough, I can bake 4 cookies in 4 minutes for a snack, and I like that. Or, I can cook chicken in the pressure cooker that is moist and falls off the bone, and then crisp it up with 4-6 minutes in the air fryer. (Post coming soon. 😉 ) So like any appliance, it comes down to how we want to use it. My fryer has a dedicated spot on my counter, and has substantially replaced frying pan, oven and toaster.

      I’m glad you like the Fried Ice Cream idea. It takes awhile to get through the steps, but the result is addictive!

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      1. Yes, mine was a glass one. Essentially an oven, so indeed a duplicate of what I already had (a microwave, convection oven and grill combo). The closed ones like yours are really expensive here, not sure why. They average at £170 on Amazon, with some models costing over £250! What’s going on, people?
        Quick baking from frozen is what I can do with my oven, may be not in 4 minutes, but certainly in 7, with preheating. I always bake frozen croissants that way – they are shaped and frozen, not pre-baked. Delicious. 😊

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      2. Oh wow, that is too much money; what’s going on indeed! Mine was purchased on special for $39, regular $60. It does sound like you get a lot from your convection oven, though. I’m envious. The fresh-baked croissants sound delicious.

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      3. I got really lucky with that oven. It’s 19 years old already too, nothing ever wrong with it, didn’t even have to change the light bulb! I shall have to do a very careful search when it finally dies – I’m getting another one! We use it all the time. You can also combine functions on it – microwave with oven or grill. This is very good when roasting a frozen chicken: if you cannot wait 24 hours for it to defrost slowly, you’d do it in hot water or in a microwave, and then you’d always have soggy bits and overcooked bits. Here you defrost it a bit so as to avoid overcooking, but then the centre is still frozen. So you use a microwave-oven combo: the microwave will penetrate through to the centre but the oven will do the actual cooking, and you end up with a beautifully roasted chicken with crispy skin as if you did it from fresh. And it even has a program for that – all you do is enter the weight of the chicken. Pure magic. 😁

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      4. You got a good one! That oven was worth the investment. I’ve seen them in catalogs from time to time, but I’ve never known anyone who had one. They are pricey, but if they perform like yours, and for that duration, I say well worth the price. I wonder why they haven’t caught on with the mainstream.

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      5. Mine is from LG, and yes, I remember it being expensive. More expensive than a good washing machine. But I had the money at the time, and I’m so glad I didn’t get tempted by “great savings” with a cheaper brand. 😀

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      6. LG was a fairly new brand back then, quite unknown, at least in The Netherlands where I was living. I remember being impressed that that particular oven was made in the UK rather than the usual Far East. I think that cinched the deal for me. 🙂 But I’m sure there are similar ovens in your corner of the woods from other solid brands.

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  2. We have a Volsen air fryer…my cousin…the Mary Poppins cousin lol is over and he is making apple chips in it… This fried ice cream will be a future project…it looks great.

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