Italian Mascarpone Ice Cream

This mascarpone ice cream is the ultimate late-summer dessert. The silky and buttery cheese really makes this frozen dessert something delicious and amazingly creamy.

Mascarpone ice cream served on a cup and topped with fresh figs.

About the recipe

Mascarpone ice cream (aka mascarpone gelato) is an easy and delicious frozen dessert featuring creamy mascarpone cheese, milk, and a sweet figs mixture.

The recipe is so simple to make and can be perfectly served for dinners, or as a sweet treat to enjoy during summer.

What Is Mascarpone?

Mascarpone is an Italian soft and buttery cheese made with only two ingredients: Heavy cream and citric acid. Because of the fat added by the heavy cream, mascarpone becomes very soft and spreadable. The taste is mildly sweet and buttery making it perfect to use in both, sweet and salty recipes.

Related: What Is Mascarpone Cheese? By The Spruce Eats.

Mascarpone is used to make risotto, pasta, desserts, and various Italian recipes. And as you probably know, is also the principal ingredient for the most famous Italian dessert tiramisù.

About Figs

Figs can be eaten whole fresh or dried, grilled, baked, roasted, boiled, and even fried. They have a fragile nature and can’t be stored fresh for too long, but they can easily be canned or frozen, making them also available all year long.

This fruit is a potassium-rich food and can prevent heart disease and stroke. Besides, high levels of fiber in figs can help to flush excess sodium from the system and help your digestion. 

One major benefit of figs is that they are naturally fat-free, cholesterol-free, and an excellent source of:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin A
  • Calcium
  • Potassium
  • Iron
  • Magnesium
Fresh figs while and cut on a wooden plate.

I love how this fruit is easily available and cheap during summer here in Italy, that’s why every season there’s always a large bowl of fresh figs on my counter and I make not only sweet recipes like this one but also salads, sandwiches, and even pizza!

How To Make Mascarpone Ice Cream

Step 1 – Make the fig mixture:

Cut the figs into quarters and place them in a small saucepan. Add sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and water. Mix well and bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat.

Let the mixture simmer for 8-10 minutes mixing every now and then until it thickens.

Fig mixture cooked on a saucepan.

Remove the fig mixture from heat, let it cool and transfer it to a container with a lid on. Store in the fridge for at least 12 hrs.

Step 2 – Make the mascarpone mixture:

In a small saucepan add the mascarpone cheese, sugar, whole milk, and vanilla extract.

Adding vanilla extract to a pot with milk, mascarpone cheese and sugar.

Turn on the heat to medium and whisk until everything is combined.

As soon as the mixture starts to boil, turn off the heat and let it cool mixing from time to time. Then transfer to a container and place in the fridge for at least 12 hours.

Mascarpone ice cream mixture on pot.

Step 3 – Make the mascarpone ice cream:

Follow the instructions on your ice cream maker. Pour first the mascarpone mixture and once is finished churning add gently the fig mixture and let it churn for a couple of seconds to achieve a swirl-ish texture.

Transfer to a freezer-safe container, and place a layer of plastic wrap or parchment paper on top to prevent ice from forming on the surface.

Allow the ice cream to rest in the freezer for 2-3 hours before serving.

Italian mascarpone Ice cream on a container.

Recipe Notes

  • To make the swirls on ice cream just make sure to not over mix the figs mixture into the mascarpone cream.
  • If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can still make this recipe, check out our sweet corn ice cream recipe and follow the instructions for method 1.
  • You can add a twist to mascarpone gelato by adding your favorite chopped nuts such as pistachios, peanuts, almonds, etc. Add them at the same time as the fig mixture.
  • No figs on the season? Try other fruits, such as pears, or apples!

How To Serve It

I like to keep it simple, so I serve this mascarpone ice cream with some chopped pistachios sprinkled on top and fresh figs. But if you want to serve it with other toppings, here are some ideas:

  • Chopped dark chocolate or chocolate chips.
  • Toasted peanuts or almonds.
  • Chocolate sauce or caramel sauce. Or try our cajeta recipe (Mexican caramel).
close up of Italian mascarpone ice cream on a cup garnished with fresh figs and pistachios.

Storage Instructions

Homemade ice cream can be stored in the freezer for up to 1 month, after that, the flavors will start to fade and the texture will become too icy, this has a negative effect on the overall taste and texture of your ice cream.

To prevent ice crystals from developing on the surface of your ice cream I suggest always keeping a layer of cling film or parchment paper on top.

Related: How To Store Homemade Ice Cream.

Watch How To Make It

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Mascarpone Ice Cream

Deliciously creamy, this mascarpone ice cream with figs is the ultimate late-summer dessert. The silky and buttery cheese really makes this frozen dessert something worth to try.
PREP 10 minutes
COOK 12 minutes
resting time 12 hours
TOTAL 12 hours 17 minutes
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Servings: 6
Author: Maricruz

Ingredients 

For the mascarpone ice cream

  • 9 oz mascarpone cheese (250)
  • 1 ½ cup whole milk (350 ml)
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For the fig mixture

  • 9 oz fresh figs (cut into chunks)
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice

Instructions

Make the fig mixture

  • Place the figs in a small sauce pan. Add sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice and water. Mix and bring the mixture to boil over medium heat.
  • Let the mixture simmer for 8-10 minutes mixing every now and then until it thickens.
  • Remove from heat, let it cool and transfer the mixture to a container with a lid on. Store in fridge for at least 12 hrs.

Make the mascarpone cream mixture

  • In a small sauce pan add the mascarpone, sugar, whole milk and vanilla extract.
  • Turn on the heat to medium and whisk until everything is combined.
  • As soon as the mixture start to boil, turn off heat and let it cool mixing from time to time. Then transfer to a container and place in the fridge for at least 12 hours.

Make the ice cream

  • Follow the instructions on your ice cream maker. Pour first the mascarpone mixture and once is finish churning add gently the fig mixture and let it churn for a couple of seconds to achieve a swirl-ish texture.
  • Transfer to a freeze-safe container and place it in the freeze for 2-3 hours before serving.

NOTES

  • To make the swirls on ice cream just make sure to not over mix the figs mixture into the mascarpone cream.
  • If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can still make this recipe, check out our sweet corn ice cream recipe and follow the instructions for method 1.
  • You can add a twist to mascarpone ice cream by adding your favorite chopped nuts such as pistachios, peanuts, almonds, etc. Add them at the same time as the fig mixture.
  • No figs on season? Try other fruits, such as pears or apples.
Nutrition
Calories: 327kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 50mg | Potassium: 184mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 755IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 144mg | Iron: 1mg
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One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    I am a regular visitor of your website . I can enrich my cooking skill by seeing your blog.in the summer ,icc cream is a amazing desert for everyone.
    you should try Mascarpone ice cream with figs at home .