Saffron, Honey, and Orange Ice Cream Recipe

Photograph: Max Falkowitz

This ice cream is all about balance: heady saffron, floral honey, and bittersweet orange zest. Use a light honey that won't overpower the other ingredients such as acacia, alfalfa, or orange blossom. Only use saffron threads, not powdered saffron; the latter is often cut with other spices like turmeric.

Recipe Details

Saffron, Honey, and Orange Ice Cream Recipe

Active 45 mins
Total 8 hrs
Makes 1 quart


  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup light honey (recommended: acacia, alfalfa, or orange blossom)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly orange zest from 1 orange


  1. In a heavy medium saucepan, whisk together egg yolks, honey, and sugar until thoroughly combined. Whisk in cream, milk, and salt, then cook over medium heat, whisking frequently, until a custard forms on the back of a spoon but a finger swiped across it leaves a clean line, about 170°F.

  2. Pour through a strainer into an airtight container and stir in saffron and orange zest. Cover and chill in refrigerator until custard drops to 40°F, 4 hours to overnight.

  3. Churn custard according to manufacturer's instructions. Transfer ice cream to airtight container and chill in freezer for at least 4 to 5 hours before serving.

Special equipment

ice cream maker

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