Puppy Chow Ice Cream

Happy Fourth of July! Time to celebrate with ice cream!

There are times in my life when I have an epiphany. Often when I cook or bake, my epiphanies come when I mix up leftovers together. Sometimes they come when I’m just sitting at the pantry, staring into the abyss. I was at my computer, staring into the abyss at this particular epiphany, but I knew immediately that it would change my life.


OK, maybe that is a bit hyperbolic. But if you have a background like mine, specifically the St. Louis Catholic all-girls high school background, then you know the importance of puppy chow. Puppy chow has many other names, like muddy buddies or monkey munch. It’s essentially a snack mix originally made of Chex cereal, coated in a chocolate peanut butter mixture, then tossed with powdered white sugar, often with other add-ins like candy or nuts. This is obviously not Paleo in the slightest, so my version of puppy chow has a different texture, plus the flavor of coconut, in addition to the chocolatey, nutty, sweet taste. I find it very delightful, and I’m sure you will too!


This recipe needs time to cool and freeze, and it takes several steps, so this is not a quick dessert choice. I break it into 5 main steps: making the puppy chow, cooling it, making the ice cream base, cooling it, then churning them together. I think it makes the most sense to make the puppy chow first, refrigerate overnight, then make and freeze the ice cream the next day, while adding in the puppy chow. Just don’t add the puppy chow into the ice cream while it’s hot – it will definitely melt the ice cream, and make a slushy mess in the ice cream machine!


Puppy Chow Ice Cream

This recipe has a few steps with waiting and cooling periods, but it is SO worth it. First, toast your coconut flakes, then mix up your melted chocolate/nut butter mixture, place the flakes and mixture in a plastic bag and shake it up! Then coat the flakes with maple or powdered coconut sugar. After it has cooled, mix in with a vanilla ice cream base, and you’ve got one of the best desserts of all time.

  • Paleo Puppy Chow:
  • 2 cups toasted coconut flakes (instructions to follow)
  • 1.75 oz dark chocolate, or approximately 1/8 cup Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips
  • 1/8 cup almond or other nut butter
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup maple or powdered coconut sugar
  • Vanilla Ice Cream:
  • 1 (13.5 oz) can full fat coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 cups almond or cashew milk
  • 1/2 cup pitted Medjool dates
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp coconut sugar

First, toast the coconut flakes by spreading them out on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and baking them at 300 degrees for about 5 minutes, or until they are a nice golden brown color. Let cool.

While the flakes are baking, gently melt the chocolate and butter in a microwave on low (on power level 4 or less), stopping to blend at 30 second intervals. Keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn't seize up. After about a minute, add in the nut butter and continue to gently melt together. Once it is a smooth liquid, add the vanilla extract last and stir together.

Take the cooled flakes and scoop them into a plastic bag. Pour the chocolate mixture into the bag and gently shake it until the flakes are fully coated. This is a delicate process, because you can easily smash the flakes into crumbs, but since they're going into ice cream, you can just aim for evenly sized pieces.

Next, pour in your powdered sweetener and gently shake until everything is coated. Unfortunately, since powdered maple and coconut sugars are translucent, the puppy chow will not have that characteristic bright white of powdered refined sugar, but I promise, it's just as delicious. Place the bag in the freezer for 20 minutes or refrigerator for an hour.

Next, place all ice cream ingredients in a high speed blender and blend until fully incorporated. Place ice cream base into a freezer-safe container and place in freezer for 30 minutes or into the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. Once chilled, place the ice cream base into your ice cream machine and follow instructions to make vanilla ice cream. Add the cooled puppy chow near the end of the freeze cycle, reserving several handfuls to sprinkle on top. Enjoy!

  • Preparation time: 30 minutes to 4 hours
  • Cook time: 5 minutes
  • Total time: around 1 hour 30 minutes

Honeycomb Ice Cream

It’s no secret that I love ice cream. And honey. Those two things together make magic.


In my never-ending quest to make the perfect ice cream, I think I’ve come pretty close with honeycomb ice cream. It has the perfect ratio of sweetness to fat, with a smooth creamy texture punctuated by semi-frozen crystals of honeycomb. And, even better? It doesn’t freeze solid into a brick like most of my ice creams do in my freezer. Somehow it retains its creamy texture, and resists freezer burn.


The only problem is that honeycomb is both expensive and hard to find. I usually buy it when I see it, and it’s usually around $16 a pound or so. I would say use it judiciously: either eat it whole, put a small amount in a high quality tea, or the best application (in my opinion) mix it into vanilla ice cream!


This recipe is wonderful on its own, but it pairs really well with a salted caramel sauce, fresh strawberries, or even a few dark chocolate chips. I was being very intuitive when I was making this ice cream so the measurements might be a bit off, but this is the best I can remember.

Honeycomb Ice Cream

In my opinion, this is the best application of honeycomb. It’s sweet, delicious, and the little frozen crystals of honey make the ice cream surprisingly pleasant.

  • 1 can organic full-fat coconut milk
  • 1.5 cups of homemade almond milk
  • ~0.5 lb of honeycomb in honey
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon of collagen hydrolysate dissolved in 0.25 cup of water (this acts as a stabilizer so that the ice cream keeps its texture)

First, dissolve collagen hydrolysate in water by mixing together with a spoon. Then, place all ingredients except the honeycomb in a blender.

Blend ingredients on high until fully blended. Pour as much of the liquid honey into the blender as you can, then blend on high.

Break the honeycomb into smaller chunks and either mix in by hand or with the blender on low. You do not want to fully break down the honeycomb, since it adds a wonderful texture to the ice cream. You can also save some honeycomb to mix into the ice cream later while it is churning in the ice cream maker. Once it's uniformly spread in the ice cream base, pour the ice cream into an airtight container.

Refrigerate for 4 hours or more, or you can freeze for 1 hour and then pour into your ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer's instructions.