Like most families, we (and by we I mean Alex) make homemade root beer every Halloween. There is just something really special about homemade root beer vs the root beer you buy in the store. And, of course, the kids LOVE watching the dry ice create the cool fog. It definitely feels festive!
So, when we were thinking of Halloween flavors, immediately root beer came to mind. So, naturally, we made root beer ice cream! And genuinely, it tastes just like a root beer float! We added some toasty marshmallows too, just for good measure. (If I’m being totally honest, we just wanted to use up the homemade marshmallows we made for toasty ghosties before they went bad, but it definitely adds great flavor and texture!)
Homemade Root Beer Float
This one will definitely float your boat!
- Root Beer Base
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 Tbs root beer extract (NOT concentrate)
- Homemade Marshmallows
1 cup cold water
3/4 ounces gelatin (3 packs)
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup corn syrup
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped and reserved
- Homemade Marshmallows (From Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home)
- Grease a baking sheet lined with parchment paper with vegetable oil.
- Put 1/2 cup of the water and gelatin in a bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the gelatin over it. Make sure it is all stirred in and let it sit while you move on to the next step.
- Combine the rest of the water, sugar, corn syrup, salt, and vanilla seeds in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Stir constantly to make sure the sugar dissolves.
- Using a candy thermometer allow the mixture to come to 236 degrees.
- Turn the stand mixer with the whisk attachment on low and allow the gelatin to mix a bit. With the mixer still going, slowly add the hot syrup carefully.
- Turn the mixer up to medium for a minute, and then to high. Allow the mixture to run for 12 minutes. It should be white and frothy by the end.
- Pour the mixture onto the greased cookie sheet and spread so that you have an even layer. Cover with a sheet a well greased plastic wrap and let it stand on the counter overnight.
- When ready, either cut the marshmallows, tossing them with powdered sugar so they don’t stick, or toast them with a kitchen torch, allow them to cool, and then cut them.
- Root Beer Base
- Heat the 1 cup heavy whipping cream and 1 cup milk on low in a medium saucepan until it reaches 140° F, stirring occasionally. While the custard heats, using an electric mixer to whisk the 2 large eggs in a medium mixing bowl until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
- While the cream is still heating, slowly add the 3/4 cup sugar into the eggs, whisking thoroughly to make sure the mixture doesn’t become grainy.
- After the cream reaches the target temperature, gradually pour it into the egg and sugar mixture, again whisking each time the cream is added to avoid cooking the eggs.
- Pour the entire mixture back into the medium saucepan and heat to 170° F.
- Now pour the mixture back into the mixing bowl. Cover and chill for 1 hour or up to 3 hours.
- Once chilled but before it goes into the ice cream maker, add the root beer extract.
- When ready, make in your ice cream maker based on the maker’s instructions.
- Assembling the Ice Cream
- When the ice cream is ready to come out, Add a layer of the ice cream to the bottom. Top that layer with 4-5 marshmallows.
- Repeat that process until all of the ice cream and marshmallows are added to the container of your choice.
- Top with a toasted marshmallow just for looks if you want. Move the ice cream to the freezer until hardened (about 4 hours).