Chocolate custard / gelato

This deeply intense chocolate gelato / custard is insanely rich and perfect for chocoholics! One scoop goes a long way!

chocolate gelato

Before any of you get into a debate with me on whether this is truly gelato (versus ice cream), hear me out. I only included “gelato” in the title because this is what the original recipe called it. True gelato fans know that gelato does not contain egg yolks, whereas ice cream does. This recipe is a bit of a blend between ice cream and gelato – there is a high percentage of milk, but it also contains egg yolks.

chocolate gelato

Now that we got that out of the way, this frozen dessert (my neutral description!) is truly a gem in every way. It has a very intense chocolate flavor. My husband even acknowledged how chocolate-y this was, so take note. The treat was dense, rich, and very smooth.

chocolate gelato

My major complaint about the dessert is that it freezes pretty solid. You’ll want to take it out about 10 minutes (or more) to let it soften a bit. Otherwise, you will have a heck of a time trying to scoop it. I did have a difficult time churning this in my ice cream machine since it was so thick (the texture of my custard was of a very thick pudding). As a result, my custard only churned for about 5 minutes before I had to stop the machine. Never fear though – I just put the contents into my freezer-safe container and it froze just fine.

chocolate gelato

Is this really gelato? No. Is it ice cream? Maybe. Or what a custard? Perhaps. Whatever you want to call this delightfully chocolate dessert, be my guest. I just hope you make it soon.

Husband’s rating: 4.5 out of 5
Addie’s rating: 4.5 out of 5
My rating: 4.5 out 5

Chocolate gelato / custard (version 2)*

This chocolate gelato/custard is super dense and bursting with a deeply intense chocolate flavor. It's for serious chocolate fans!
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Chilling time16 hours
Total Time16 hours 30 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Ice Cream
Servings: 1 quart
Author: Eva Bakes


  • 2 and ¼ cups whole milk
  • cup heavy cream
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar divided
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 ounces bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate finely chopped
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • pinch salt


  • In a medium sized saucepan, heat up the milk, heavy cream, and ½ cup of the granulated sugar until the sugar dissolves.
  • Add in the cocoa powder and chopped chocolate and stir until smooth.
  • While the mixture is cooking, whip the egg yolks and remaining ¼ cup of granulated sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large bowl if using a handheld mixer) on high speed for 3-5 minutes. The egg yolks will turn pale and thick.
  • Turn the mixer to low and slowly stream in the hot chocolate mixture and mix until uniform. Then pour the mixture back into the saucepan and heat on medium low heat until it thickens to almost pudding consistency.
  • Set a fine mesh sieve over a large bowl. Pour the mixture through the sieve into your bowl and get rid of any eggy bits or clumped cocoa powder.
  • Stir in the vanilla and salt and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for 8 hours or up to overnight until the mixture is very cold.
  • The next day, churn the custard according to your manufacturer's instructions. Note that I had issues churning my custard because it was so thick - it only churned for about 5 minutes before I had to stop the mixer.
  • Transfer the gelato/custard into a freezer-safe container and place in the freezer to chill for at least another 8 hours before serving and enjoying.


Source: Ina Garten, via The Food Network


  1. Wynne
    July 7, 2022 / 6:14 pm

    A cup of cocoa plus chocolate–no wonder! Printing this to try; it looks wonderful. Do you know the trick about sneaking in alcohol (eg vodka) or more sugar to get a softer freeze set? This one’s pretty low-sugar; I bet that’s the reason it was so hard.

    • evabakes
      July 7, 2022 / 6:33 pm

      Yes – I do know the trick but didn’t want to add any alcohol in it this time. Thanks for the reminder!

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