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From the Kitchen: Quick Coconut Saffron Ice Cream

May 30, 2012

Over the weekend, I was in a food mood and I just couldn’t shake the desire to make ice cream (among other things). This Coconut Saffron Ice Cream, a David Lebovitz adaptation, has been on my radar for quite some time and I just happened to have all of the ingredients on hand. Having only used saffron in rice dishes and, for the most part, only eaten coconut in some form of dessert, I was pretty intrigued by the juxtaposition of the two spectrum-spanning foods. Saffron, with its distinct taste and smell (and color), clearly takes center stage in this recipe, while coconut milk adds a sweet creamy balance. Together, this unusual combination, makes for a deliciously sophisticated flavor. Fair warning, this ice cream is not for everyone, but I do highly recommend it to those of you with more adventurous palates. It’s really quite good. Recipe below. xoxo!

Coconut Saffron Ice Cream (adapted from David Lebovitz)

Makes about 1 pint


  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup white or unrefined cane sugar
  • scant 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
  • 2 tablespoons toasted coconut (great how-to here)


1. In a medium-sized saucepan, bring all the ingredients to a boil except toasted coconut.

2. Reduce the heat and simmer gently for ten minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, and chill the mixture thoroughly.

3. Once chilled, freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions. Add toasted coconut at this point. Once churned, be sure to scrape any saffron threads clinging to the sides back in to the ice cream.

Note: if you don’t have an ice cream maker, David Lebovitz has an awesome post on making ice cream without one, here.

18 Comments leave one →
  1. May 30, 2012 12:06 am

    I bet this would be delicious with some fresh raspberries!

    • love and cupcakes permalink*
      May 30, 2012 11:56 pm

      Mmmm! That sounds so refreshing!

  2. May 30, 2012 1:09 am

    Seems quite easy and has no egg yolks which makes it “lighter” in a way.

    • love and cupcakes permalink*
      May 30, 2012 11:57 pm

      It was super easy! I love no yolk recipes.

  3. May 30, 2012 1:24 am

    Oh, I wish I had an ice cream maker!

    • love and cupcakes permalink*
      May 30, 2012 11:58 pm

      You don’t need an ice cream maker! There’s a link to a no ice cream maker method of making ice cream at the bottom of my post! Yay!

  4. May 30, 2012 5:06 am

    whether I ever try any of your intriguing recipes or not, I enjoy your writing and descriptions: eg–intrigued by the juxtaposition of the two-spectrum spanning foods”–saffron and coconut–who would have thought?

    • love and cupcakes permalink*
      May 30, 2012 11:59 pm

      Thanks so much for the compliment!

  5. May 30, 2012 8:49 am

    Reblogged this on hallucinatingmartyr.

  6. May 30, 2012 8:53 am

    I love saffron flavor in ice cream. Persian ice cream almost always has saffron in it. I have never had the combination with coconut though…it sounds amazing! And it looks amazing too! :)

    • love and cupcakes permalink*
      May 31, 2012 12:00 am

      This was my first time using saffron in anything that wasn’t rice! But I have to agree with you now… I love saffron in ice cream now too! I’ll have to hunt down Persian ice cream, I’m not at all familiar, thanks for sharing :)

  7. May 31, 2012 12:44 pm

    Yum! This looks amazing. I’m going to try and make it but with only coconut milk since I can’t eat dairy. Probably won’t be as rich and creamy, but hopefully still delicious.
    I just bought an ice cream maker this year and I’ve been making tons of coconut ice creams:

    • love and cupcakes permalink*
      June 4, 2012 8:14 am

      Coconut milk alone sounds tasty, it’ll probably be more icy like a snow cone…but who doesn’t love a snow cone?!!….your blueberry coconut ice cream looks amazing, btw. I can’t wait to try it!

  8. June 2, 2012 8:02 pm

    wow what a combo. i would never think to put all of this together but it sounds amazing. thanks for postinG!

  9. June 10, 2012 10:25 am

    Seeing your recipe makes me realize that the possabilities are endless when it comes to summer ice-creams, pops, sno-cones and other refreshing treats! thank you!!

  10. June 12, 2012 10:04 am

    Reblogged this on So Many Places to Call Home and commented:
    must try this!

  11. July 8, 2012 12:09 pm

    Aloha! I just started a blog called: Best Blog Recipes and would like to feature one of your recipes, it’s pictures, a little about your and of course a link to your blog. Please, let me know if you are interested.

  12. Tina permalink
    December 10, 2012 7:58 am

    For eesh – you probably could substitute an almond or rice milk – they are thinner, of course, but will add more creaminess than nothing other than the cocoanut milk….. Have fun eating the trial and errors!

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