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5 from 1 vote

Cherry Chocolate Chunk Vegan Ice Cream

This vegan ice cream is super thick and creamy with lots of chunks of chocolate and deep red cherries. In fact, even the dairy lovers who stop by have raved about it, too! It's the perfect way to celebrate cherry season.
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Soaking Time6 hrs
Total Time6 hrs 50 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: plant based, vegan
Keyword: Cherry Ice Cream, Vegan Ice Cream
Servings: 8 large scoops


  • 1 c. of unroasted, unsalted cashews OR one extra cup of coconut cream (120 g)**(see note below)
  • 1 13.5 oz. can coconut cream, usually found in the baking aisle
  • 1/3 c. maple syrup (79 ml)
  • 3 Tbsp. granulated sugar (44 g)
  • 2 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. Salt
  • 18 whole fresh or frozen cherries
  • 1/2 c. chopped dark chocolate bar of choice (80 g) I like the type with sea salt and almonds added
  • 1/2 c. cherry jam or preserves (If you can't find cherry jam, raspberry jam works well, too! The brighter the red the better.)
  • **If you do not have a professional high speed blender such as a Vitamix, omit the cashews and go with the option of adding an extra cup (237 ml) of canned coconut cream, instead.


  • First, place your cashews in a bowl and cover them with about 2 1/2 cups of water.  Allow them to soak for at least 6 hours but no longer than 24 hours. Note: if you don't own a professional grade blender such as a Vitamix, replace the cashews with extra coconut cream, as noted in the ingredients.
    Also - if you use the type of ice cream maker that requires a frozen base in order to make the ice cream, place that base in your freezer for at least 6 hours, as well.
  • Drain and then rinse your cashews thoroughly in cold water.  Then, just place them in a high speed blender for now.
  • Add the entire can of coconut cream, maple syrup, sugar, vanilla and salt to the blender also, and then blend on high until the mixture is very smooth.
  • Next, pour this ice cream base into your ice cream maker and start the churning process. My ice cream maker usually takes about 20-25 minutes to create thick and creamy ice cream, but others may take longer or shorter amounts of time.
  • Meanwhile, prepare your cherries and chocolate.  
    First, pit all of your cherries. Afterwards, place those cherries in a pile and give them a good chop. Then, chop your chocolate, too. I aim for slightly larger than pea-sized pieces of cherries and about double that size for the chocolate. You'll naturally end up with some smaller chocolate pieces and shavings too, which is perfect.
  • When your ice cream becomes very thick and slightly harder to churn, add your cherries and chocolate and allow those two to churn with the ice cream for a few minutes until incorporated.
  • Finally, spoon your cherry jam into the ice cream maker, too.  I usually only allow the jam to churn with the ice cream for only about 10 seconds because I like the swirly look it creates when it isn't fully mixed in. But if you want a nice, evenly pink colored ice cream, allow the ice cream maker to go a little longer.
  • At this point, the ice cream is more in "soft serve" form, so for more traditional ice cream, spoon this dreamy mixture into a storage container and smooth over the surface.  I like to add a little more chopped chocolate and/or cherries to the surface if I have left overs in order to make it look even more enticing. Then, I secure the lid and it's off to the freezer.
    After a few hours of freezing, your ice cream will be nice and firm and ready for enjoyment.


  • If you don’t have an ultra high-speed blender such as a Vitamix, I recommend substituting the cashews with an additional one cup of canned coconut cream.
  • Take this ice cream to the next level by pairing it with my 2-Ingredient Vegan Whipped Cream.
  • Feel free to get creative with your chocolate choice. I like the type with sea salt and almonds, but any dark chocolate would work well too!
  • I find that using dark red cherries works best with this recipe.
  • When buying cashews, make sure they're raw (unroasted) and unsalted.
  • Not a fan of cashews or have a cashew allergy? No prob - simply replace the cashews with extra coconut cream as noted in the ingredients. 
  • This ice cream is best if consumed within two weeks, but it's still delicious after a month or two.
  • THIS is the handy dandy cherry pitting tool I use that pits six cherries at once!
  • THIS is the awesome ice cream maker that I've used for years.