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Easy & Eggless Chocolate Gelato

Easy & Eggless Chocolate Gelato


Summer + ice cream = memories.

In a bowl, on a cone, in a sandwich, alongside a fresh fruit pie or crisp, in a float or blended into a milkshake — however you serve it, it’s always smooth going down, whatever the flavour.

But I think many of us would admit to a particular fondness for chocolate.  After keeping warm with mugs of the hot stuff all winter long, there’s something particularly satisfying about cooling off with your first scoop of rich, dark, chocolate ice cream once the warm weather takes hold.


Below is a snapshot of one of my favourite ice-cream memories.  Hanging out in the Dairy Queen parking lot with the greatest T-ball team of the 70’s, the Bionic Batters.  That’s me in the middle row, second from the right.

We’re all looking  triumphant, so we must have won.  Not that winning is important.  I’m all about participation.

Those who know me well just choked on their own guffaw.  If there is one constant in this world, it is the competitive spirit that courses through my veins.  I play to win — I know no other way. ;)


This recipe is adapted from Saveur, who used cocoa to make theirs.  I had a couple of big bars of good-quality bittersweet chocolate in my stash, so I went with those instead, but I have included the cocoa variation in my notes below the recipe.

This is a Sicilian style gelato, meaning that it uses cornstarch instead of egg yolks as a thickener.  It’s lighter, easier on the waistline and cholesterol counts but still rich, creamy and delicious.  I know many of us out there aren’t huge fans of cornstarch, but there’s always options!  How about tapioca or rice starch?  I can’t imagine that they wouldn’t work…


(Click the title below for a printable version of the recipe.)

: Easy & Eggless Chocolate Gelato Recipe

: Easy, creamy & delicious, you’ll be making homemade ice cream more times than you’ll care to admit to this summer!

  • Half & Half – 2 cups (500 ml)
  • Milk – 1 cup (250 ml)
  • Vanilla – 1 tsp. (5 ml)
  • Sugar – 3/4 cup (180 ml)
  • Cornstarch – 2 Tbsp (30 ml)
  • Salt – pinch
  • Bittersweet Chocolate, chopped – 7oz (200 g)
  1. Bring half & half, milk and vanilla to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Meanwhile, stir together sugar, cornstarch and salt in a small bowl.
  2. When cream mixture is at a simmer, remove from heat. Whisk in chocolate, and continue to stir until completely melted and smooth. Whisk in sugar mixture, then return pan to heat over med-low. Cook until sugar dissolves and mixture is slightly thickened, stirring constantly. (5-10 minutes).
  3. Remove from heat, cool, then refrigerate, covered overnight (at least 6 hours).
  4. Process mixture in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s directions. Transfer to a container and freeze until firm. Remove the gelato from the freezer 10 minutes before serving to soften slightly for easier scooping.


  • For super creamy, wonderfully rich gelato, substitute whipping cream for the milk.  You only live once, right?
  • To make this recipe lighter, use 3 cups of milk and no cream.
  • Experiment to find the milk/half & half/whipping cream combination that you like best.  You’ve got all summer to figure it out!
  • The original Saveur recipe used ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa instead of bittersweet chocolate.  To use cocoa, whisk it into the sugar/cornstarch, then add the whole mixture to the heated cream/milk off heat.  Continue recipe as above.
  • 1 tablespoon of vodka added just before you pour the mixture into the ice cream maker will make the gelato easier to scoop right out of the freezer.

Preparation time: 15 minute(s)

Cooking time:

Diet type: Vegetarian

Diet tags: Gluten free

Number of servings (yield): 8

Culinary tradition: Italian

Copyright © © 2009-2011 Island Vittles/Theresa Carle-Sanders. All rights reserved. Don’t steal.  Karma’s real.



  1. Veronica Gantley
    June 27, 2011 at 10:19 am

    I love chocolate, I have yet to meet anyone who doesnt like it. I love your gellato. Do you have a preference of chocolate? I like hershey myself. Can I use that?

    • Theresa
      June 27, 2011 at 10:56 am


      Hershey’s will work. I’m unsure if they make a bittersweet version? If not, and you use semi-sweet or milk chocolate, make sure to adjust (lessen) the amount of sugar you use in the recipe. I can’t tell you exact amounts, but maybe start by reducing it by one third…I hope you enjoy it! Theresa

  2. Claudia
    June 27, 2011 at 10:33 am

    I’m making this. I just lost 30 pounds and I cannot think of a better way to gain…. err celebrate!

    • Theresa
      June 27, 2011 at 10:54 am

      Claudia…that is an amazing accomplishment — and just in time for bathing suit season! You better believe that deserves a scoop!

  3. Lee Ann
    June 27, 2011 at 10:44 am

    This makes me want to run out and buy an ice cream maker!!!

  4. Belinda @zomppa
    June 27, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    That’s the best photo! Love that creamy perfect gelato!

  5. That’s absolutely gorgeous, Theresa. Regarding the “admitting to a particular fondness for chocolate,” well, um, yeah, you know. That doesn’t stop your gelato from being gorgeous though. I’m curious as to why anyone would have a dislike for cornstarch. Is there something I’ve missed?

    (And yea for the competitive spirit.)

    • Theresa
      June 27, 2011 at 8:12 pm

      Thanks Mom Chef! Avoiding cornstarch is all about avoiding genetically modified foods — if you`re trying to stay away from GM, then anything corn is out of the question (and out of your pantry…)

  6. Stephanie @ okie dokie artichokie
    June 28, 2011 at 4:55 am

    Mmm…chocolate. I just had a huge serving of rocky road in a waffle cone a few weeks ago and it was the perfect thing to have on a warm summer evening! :-) Truth be told, I don’t always gravitate towards chocolate-y things in warm weather, usually I stick to butter pecan or something else caramel-y. But your super smooth gelato looks wonderful, Theresa! And I am LOVING the old-school picture of you and your baseball team. So cute!

  7. Boulder Locavore
    June 28, 2011 at 5:59 am

    This looks creamy and delish. I bet arrowhead root would work as a thickener too. Love the ‘back in the day at the DQ’ photo too! Summer really is all about ice cream.

  8. Emily @Cleanliness
    June 28, 2011 at 9:46 am

    This looks rockin’!

  9. briarrose
    June 28, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    This looks so good. If only I had a bowl on this terrible hot day. :)

  10. Spice Sherpa
    June 29, 2011 at 10:06 am

    I’m always on the lookout for easy chocolate ice-cream recipes. This looks deep and decadent and worth a try. Besides, who can resist that adorable picture of the softball champs?

    We must be on the same wavelength–I just posted a homemade ice cream recipe too. Mine is for cinnamon and honey.

    Enjoy your summer!

  11. Emily @ Life on Food
    June 30, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    I love your little teacup. What a great way to serve up a sweet cool treat. I have a bit of an obsession with gelato. I am definitely bookmarking this recipe!

  12. Eftychia
    July 2, 2011 at 3:50 am

    It sounds delicious, but what is “half & half”??

    • Theresa
      July 2, 2011 at 8:59 pm

      half and half is a half whipping cream and half whole milk. It is found in the dairy case next to the whipping cream in North America. It may have another name elsewhere…? Thanks for visiting! Theresa

  13. Amy
    July 17, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    Yum! I love that an egg custard is not needed to make this gelato! It sounds wonderful and looks so decadent!

  14. Elaine
    December 31, 2013 at 6:38 am

    DIVINE! I am so happy to have found an eggless gelato recipe! My family loved it as well! So rich and creamy, not rough and icy like most eggless ice cream recipes. Thank you for sharing!

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