Soft and Rich Chocolate Frozen Custard Recipe

Photograph: Robyn Lee

This recipe makes rich, soft frozen custard like you'll find at Shake Shack, Kopp's, Culver's, and all sorts of custard shops around the South and Midwest. For the softest, creamiest results, eat the custard within two hours of churning.

This recipe can be easily doubled, but take caution to only make as much custard as you'll serve in one sitting.

Why this recipe works:

  • High amounts of cream and egg yolks make the custard base full-bodied and super-creamy.
  • A small amount of corn syrup adds extra density and richness to the custard, replicating the texture professional custard machines provide.
  • Serving the custard right away mimics the "fresh from the machine" lightness of store-bought frozen custard.

Recipe Facts

Active: 40 mins
Total: 2 hrs 40 mins
Serves: 4 servings
Makes: 1 pint

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  • 4 egg yolks

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 2 tablespoons light (clear) corn syrup

  • 1/4 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder

  • 1 cup heavy cream

  • 1/2 cup whole milk

  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk together egg yolks, sugar, corn syrup, and cocoa powder until well combined. Whisk in cream and milk until yolk mixture is fully incorporated.

  2. Place pot over medium-low heat and cook, whisking frequently, until a custard forms on a spoon and a finger swiped across the back leaves a clean line, or until custard temperature reaches 170°F. Stir in salt and vanilla.

  3. Strain custard through a fine mesh strainer and chill in either ice bath or refrigerator until it is very cold, about 40°F. Churn in ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions, then serve right away or transfer to an airtight container and chill in freezer for 1 hour to let custard firm up slightly. Serve custard within two hours of it being made.

  4. Optional: To make concrete-style drinks, finely chop up ingredients like M&M's, heath bars, cookies, or pretzels and store in freezer, then add to ice cream machine during last two minutes of churning. Serve right away in a glass or cup with a straw and a long spoon.

Special equipment

ice cream maker

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Nutrition Facts (per serving)
408 Calories
29g Fat
28g Carbs
11g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 408
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 29g 37%
Saturated Fat 16g 81%
Cholesterol 302mg 101%
Sodium 147mg 6%
Total Carbohydrate 28g 10%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 24g
Protein 11g
Vitamin C 0mg 2%
Calcium 109mg 8%
Iron 3mg 16%
Potassium 172mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)