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Key Lime Ice Cream

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You are just 4 ingredients away from a bowl of creamy homemade key lime ice cream. The big citrus flavor is perfectly refreshing for a hot summer day.

Creamy key lime ice cream in glass stemless martini glass, ready to eat.

If you love a good sweet and tart dessert, you are in for a treat. This key lime ice cream recipe is simple as can be to make and has a big blast of flavor from the key lime juice.

Each bite will transport you to Key West, and who doesn’t want a flavor vacation to the islands? 

All of the Key Lime Treats

This simple homemade ice cream is so smooth and creamy.  It really is just about as good as it gets. 

Whip up a batch to see for yourself.

I cannot tell you enough how much my boys liked this ice cream.  It left my husband wondering (out loud, several times over) why we haven’t been making key lime ice cream all of these years.

Ingredients including key lime juice, heavy cream, sugar, and whole milk ready to be made into 4 ingredient key lime ice cream.

My boys have always been a big fan of no bake key lime cheesecake and condensed milk key lime pie. We also love key lime shrimp, so I don’t know why we haven’t thought to make ice cream before.

Of course, I knew it was going to be a hit after everyone loved the key lime sherbet so much.  This ice cream is every bit as citrusy and delicious but has more cream, so the texture is even more luxurious.

Other than that, there isn’t a ton to tell you about this recipe. It is so simple and so good and that is really all you need to know!

Favorite Ice Cream Makers

MiMi has a couple of kitchenaid ice cream maker attachments for her stand mixer.  She loves them and makes all of her ice cream with them.

I have a cuisinart ice cream maker. You freeze the bowl ahead of using it much like the kitchenaid attachment.

Both work great and are relatively affordable. You just have to remember to get the bowl in the freezer in plenty of time to get it cold, but that is a whole lot better than making sure you have enough ice and salt on hand!

Great Ice Cream Storage Options

My mom loves the Tovolo Glide-A-Scoop containers that fit in the freezer well, stack easily, and store nicely. She already has a couple and is getting ready to order more.

I have fun quart sized containers that are reusable and dishwasher safe that I like as well. No matter how it’s stored, ice cream tends to disappear quickly around here!

Ice cream scoop getting ball of key lime ice cream from quart storage container.

What is the difference between sorbet, sherbet, and ice cream?

Sherbet is between sorbet and ice cream. Sorbet doesn’t include dairy, sherbet includes some dairy and ice cream contains almost 50% cream.

Tips and Tricks

As the ice cream mixture churns, it will expand. Don’t worry, though. By that point, it is frozen enough that it won’t run over or make a mess.

Make sure to freeze the bowl of your ice cream maker at least overnight. If you have the freezer space, just keep it in the freezer so you can make ice cream whenever you would like.

Using cold ingredients will help the ice cream to freeze more quickly. There is no need to let anything come to room temperature here.

Bowl of creamy homemade key lime ice cream in front of storage container.

After the ice cream has been in the freezer for a while, it will freeze pretty solid. Pull it out of the freeze about 10 minutes before you plan to serve it to make scooping easier.

You can try adjusting the cream to milk ratio if you want to try to save some calories. But keep in mind that the texture will change as you adjust the amounts.

More Great Summertime Desserts

Strawberry orange sorbet is another refreshing dessert. As the name suggests, it is dairy free and loaded with fruity goodness.

For a refreshing lemon treat, try making frozen lemon pie. You can substitute key lime juice for the lemon juice to make it a frozen key lime pie.

Key lime cheesecake jars are one of our favorite treats. They are perfect for packing on a picnic or serving at a party.

For another fun and easy citrus treat, try making some lemon puppy chow. It’s a great snack mix.

Love this recipe? Give it a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ review in the recipe card below!

Creamy key lime ice cream in glass stemless martini glass, ready to eat.

Key Lime Ice Cream

Servings: 8 Servings (about 2 quarts)
Author: Carlee
If you are looking for a refreshing dessert, this homemade key lime ice cream is the perfect answer. It has the perfect mix of sweet and sour in a smooth, creamy ice cream base. It only takes 4 ingredients and a few minutes to put together. So get your ice cream maker out, it's key lime ice cream time!
5 from 10 ratings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Additional Time 4 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 35 minutes


  • 3 cups heavy creamy
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup key lime juice


  • In a large bowl, stir together cream, milk, and sugar until the sugar is dissolved.
    3 cups heavy creamy, 1 cup whole milk, 1½ cups granulated sugar
  • Add key lime juice and stir to combine.
    1 cup key lime juice
  • Pour into ice cream maker and churn according to your ice cream maker's instructions.
  • Scoop ice cream into storage containers and freeze for at least 4 more hours.
  • Scoop and serve.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 171kcalCarbohydrates: 42gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 14mgSugar: 39g

Nutritional Disclaimer

“Cooking With Carlee” is not a dietitian or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

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5 from 10 votes (10 ratings without comment)
Recipe Rating