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Homemade Gelato Ice Cream Recipe

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This homemade gelato ice cream recipe is made without eggs – and is sure to please your tastebuds.

The pepper adds a touch of spice but is not overpowering as one might think. The wine adds the beautiful color and a fruity flavor.

Serve it alone or pair it with my Angel Food Cake Recipe With Poppyseed And Lemon Zest.

The Original Recipe

The original recipe for this Red Wine Black Pepper Gelato came from Charlie Trotter’s Desserts Cookbook. I did alter the recipe some as well as the original serving suggestions.

In his book, Charlie Trotter suggested serving the gelato with the angel food cake, then topping it with blueberries and creme fraiche. I preferred to serve it alone topped with chocolate.

My Recipe Alterations

The gelato was made using red wine I made back in 2010 using grapes from my own garden. It was my first attempt at wine making and did not have the deep red color that some brands of store bought wine have so my gelato is not as pretty as it is in the book but it still tastes great.

It has a slightly fruity taste – I hesitate to say grape as it really wasn’t the same as fresh grapes – with spicy black pepper undertones.

In his book Charlie Trotter suggested straining the pepper out at the end of the recipe. I did not do this either.

The addition of the chocolate hearts added a depth to the overall taste of the gelato that I felt was needed.

Possibly adding the blueberries as suggested would take this depth of flavor one step further.

Give Yourself Plenty Of Time

Plan to spend several hours making this recipe. It took a long time to boil the milk and cream down.

It then took 45 minutes once everything was combined and cooled for my ice cream maker to churn it.

I left it sit overnight in the freezer to solidify.

Below is the recipe as well as links to products I recommend from companies I have a referral relationship with. I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.


Homemade Gelato Ice Cream Recipe

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  • 3 cups red wine (I used homemade from 2010)
  • 1 Tablespoon black pepper (fresh ground if possible)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 cups milk
  • 6 Tablespoons sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons light corn syrup


  1. Measure the wine into a stainless steel sauce pan, bring it to a boil then reduce the heat so it simmers for about 20 minutes or until the wine is reduced to 1/2 cup.
  2. Pour the wine into a glass container at this point and add in the pepper. Cover the container and allow this to steep for half an hour.
  3. While the pepper and wine are steeping, add the milk and cream to the pan the wine was in. Bring this to a boil, stirring frequently, then reduce it to a simmer. This takes a while as you do not want the milk and cream to burn.
  4. Once the milk and cream mixture is reduced to 2 cups, whisk in the sugar and corn syrup. Cook for 3 minutes whisking to make sure the sugar and corn syrup dissolve.
  5. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the wine mixture. You can strain it at this point if you wish.
  6. Sit the pan in an ice water bath and prepare your ice cream maker.
  7. Pour the cooled mixture into your ice cream maker and follow the manufacturers instructions for use.
  8. Once the ice cream maker is finished working, scoop the gelato (mine was very liquidly still) into a freezer container, cover and freeze overnight.
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Christine Horan

Saturday 3rd of June 2017

I'm not big on cooking deserts with wine or any alcohol . Would the original Gelato ice cream be without any alcohol? I'm sure my family would enjoy it minus acolhol.Also it seems to be very low on sweetener for all the liquid dairy,would you have a recipe that is sweeter without alcohol?

Monday 5th of June 2017

Hi Christine, thank you for your question. The alcohol content evaporates when you boil it down, so only the "fruit" flavor is left. Once it is boiled down, only 1/2 cup remains so you might try replacing the wine with 1/2 cup grape juice. My goal was to find a less sweet recipe because I have issues consuming anything that has a high sugar content and I also needed a recipe that did not contain eggs because I am allergic to them. Jeffrey (who loves sugary sweet desserts) seemed to like this and did not mention it as not being sweet but possibly it was due to the high sugar content from the homemade wine. I will continue to look and experiment to see what I can come up with. At this time this is my only gelato recipe, but I do plan to add more as time allows.

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