If you like unique ice cream flavors, you’ll love this banana pancake ice cream. Use up leftover pancakes and ripe bananas while you’re at it!

White ceramic bowl filled with nutty homemade ice cream and garnished with brown brittle.

I like to make at least one batch of homemade ice cream each summer. Usually classic vanilla, strawberry or mint ice cream.

But if I get really ambitious and make a second batch, I always like to experiment with a fun flavor of my invention. This is how pop tart ice cream and milk tea ice cream came about.

This banana pancake ice cream was created entirely because I had leftover pancakes that needed to be eaten, as well as ripe bananas that needed to be used up.

I think we can all agree with Jack Johnson that banana pancakes are delicious and so comforting on a weekend morning. And who can refuse a scoop of homemade ice cream? This banana pancake ice cream is the best of both worlds.

The flavor can best be described as a mixture of butter pecan ice cream, bananas foster and maple syrup-drenched pancakes (if you make the maple brittle). Put it on top malted waffles or a caramelized banana split, or simply enjoy it in a bowl or on a cone.

Large white ramekin filled with pancake ice cream, garnished with brittle. Bananas, pancakes and pecans garnish the scene.

You’ll need two pancakes for this banana pancake ice cream.

Yes, this pancake ice cream uses real pancakes! You’ll need just two 8-inch pancakes, so it’s best to make this ice cream after you’ve made pancakes for breakfast, and have a couple left over!

You can use whole grain pancakes or classic buttermilk pancakes. Whatever you like best is what you should use, just don’t burn them! Or, order a couple of pancakes to go from your favorite diner. No judgement!

You’ll chop the prepared pancakes into 1-inch pieces, spread them on a parchment paper-lined baking pan, and then transfer them to the freezer. Freeze the pancake pieces for at least 30 minutes or up to a few days before you make this ice cream.

Having the pancakes be frozen when you mix them into the ice cream after it’s churned prevents them from breaking up into tiny little crumbles. You want to be able to see and taste chunks of delicious pancake!

Large white ramekin filled with chunky homemade ice cream and maple brittle.

Use ripe bananas, but not mushy ones.

And just like we don’t want the pancakes to disintegrate in the final ice cream, we don’t want the bananas to, either! For this banana pancake ice cream, you should use ripe bananas (some brown spots), but not overripe (all brown and mushy).

You’ll be sautéing the bananas in butter in a skillet, and overripe bananas wouldn’t hold up to that.

On the other hand, if your bananas are UNDER ripe, and you want to make this ice cream today, see my tutorial on how to ripen bananas in the oven.

Pecans add a special touch to this banana pancake ice cream.

I love adding pecans sautéed in butter to this pancake ice cream, because it reminds me of butter pecan ice cream, which is one of my favorites!

However, you can use any nut that you prefer, including walnuts, almonds, or even peanuts. Peanuts would make it taste kind of like a peanut butter-banana-pancake ice cream!

If you can’t eat or don’t prefer nuts at all, you can simply leave them out. In Step 2, melt the butter in the skillet, and then skip directly to Step 3 where you add the bananas (skipping the pecan part). You’ll still want to use the full amount of butter, even if you’re not using the nuts, because it adds flavor to the ice cream.

White ceramic bowl filled with nutty homemade gelato and garnished with brown brittle.

Make some maple syrup brittle as garnish, if you want!

This pancake ice cream is so delicious on it’s own, and garnishing it is kind of gilding the lily, so it’s completely optional.

But, I wanted to find a way to include maple syrup in this recipe, so I decided to make a batch of maple syrup brittle to garnish the ice cream when I served it.

It was actually pretty hard finding a brittle recipe that didn’t include nuts (because the ice cream already includes pecans), but I can vouch for this recipe, it works!

More frozen treats:

There’s nothing like a cold dessert on a hot summer day to cool you down. Try one of the recipes below this summer!

White ceramic bowl filled with nutty homemade ice cream and garnished with brown brittle.

Banana Pancake Ice Cream

Yield: About 7 cups
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

If you like unique ice cream flavors, you'll love this banana pancake ice cream. Use up leftover pancakes and ripe bananas while you're at it!

Ingredients

  • 2 (8-inch) pancakes, prepared using your favorite recipe
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup pecan halves and pieces
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 ripe bananas, halved lengthwise and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2-1/4 cups heavy cream
  • 2-1/4 cups whole milk
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • Maple Syrup Brittle, for garnish (optional) (1/2 batch is plenty)

Instructions

  1. Cut pancakes into 1-inch pieces. Place on parchment-lined baking pan and transfer to freezer.
  2. In medium nonstick skillet, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add pecans and salt and cook 4 to 6 minutes or until pecans are golden brown, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; use slotted spoon to transfer pecans to medium bowl. Reserve butter in pan.
  3. Add bananas to pan; cook over medium-high heat 4 to 5 minutes or until bananas are caramelized, stirring frequently. Transfer bananas and any butter remaining in pan to bowl with pecans. Cover and refrigerate.
  4. In medium saucepan, combine cream and milk. Split vanilla bean in half; use blunt edge of a paring knife to scrape out seeds. Stir seeds and bean pod into milk mixture. Bring mixture to a slow boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low; simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Place eggs, egg yolks and sugar in bowl of stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Mix on medium speed 2 minutes or until thick and pale yellow in color. In a slow, steady stream, add 1 cup of hot milk mixture to egg mixture. When combined; pour egg mixture into saucepan with remaining milk mixture.
  6. Cook, stirring constantly, over medium-low heat until mixture is thick enough to coat back of spoon. Strain through fine-mesh strainer set over a large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap placed directly on custard; chill completely.
  7. When chilled, pour custard mixture into ice cream machine and churn according to instructions for your machine (mine took about 20 minutes).
  8. Two minutes before churning is complete, add reserved pecans and bananas, and frozen pancake pieces. Churn until everything is fully incorporated (if it’s too much for your machine to handle, you can also fold in mix-ins in by hand).
  9. Transfer ice cream to freezer to harden completely (at least 4 hours). Serve garnished with Maple Syrup Brittle, if desired.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 14 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 411Total Fat: 38gSaturated Fat: 20gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 185mgSodium: 170mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 1gSugar: 10gProtein: 8g

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