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30 easy summer frozen dessert recipes, from ice cream to cake

What could possibly beat a frozen treat on a hot day? There’s nothing like the combination of cool, melty and sweet when the sun is out in full force.

When you’re looking to whip something up for a special occasion or just, you know, because it’s summertime, these frozen dessert recipes — from ice cream to ice pops — have got you covered. So, don’t turn on the oven but do make room in the freezer. Your kitchen just became the coolest spot in the house.

Ice cream ice cream sandwiches

Maya Warren

Ice cream is always a treat, but it tastes even better when you make it yourself. This creamy, dreamy, no-churn ice cream comes together in just 10 minutes. The hardest part is simply waiting for it to chill.

Jeni's Splendid Vanilla Ice Cream

Getty Images stock

Jeni’s Splendid is one of President Biden’s favorite ice cream brands, and its founder Jeni Britton Bauer dishes up her secrets to create the ultimate vanilla ice cream. This creamy concoction made with real vanilla bean is simple to make but it’s no plain Jane.

Healthy Breakfast Ice Cream


Ice cream … for breakfast?! Yes, you can eat it anytime, especially if you make a healthy vegan version. Top it with your favorite fruit, nuts, seeds or granola.

Perfect Brownies and Brownie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Jocelyn Delk Adams

Turning these tasty brownies into ice cream sandwiches is so perfect because the chewiness is so, so delicious with the ice cream and a great treat for special occasions. Plus, it’s easy enough to make with the kids.

Dairy-Free Chocolate-Peanut Butter Ice Cream Sandwiches

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

Chocolate and peanut butter are the perfect pair. The dynamic duo is, hands down, Joy Bauer’s my favorite combo. Naturally, the nutrition expert turned the flavors into a frozen sandwich format — and it’s dairy-free!

Cardamom-Date Coffee Ice Cream Sandwich

Aarti Sequeira

These gorgeous ice cream sandwiches, Aarti Sequeira’s sweet ode to Bedouin culture, are rich with cardamom-scented coffee, dates and pistachios swirled into a creamy, slightly crunchy confection.

Chocolate-Dipped Vegan Ice Cream Sandwiches

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

Ice cream sandwiches are great, but when you dip them in chocolate and roll them through toppings, it takes it to another level. Despite how casual these vegan treats might seem, they look quite sleek and trendy lined up on a nice platter, making them work nicely for a special occasion.

Funnel Cake Ice Cream Sandwich

Samantha Okazaki / TODAY

It’s a carnival in your kitchen! Try this sweet ice cream sandwich, featuring nostalgic summertime dishes like funnel cake.

Cookies & Cream Rice Krispies Treat Ice Cream Sandwiches

Grace Parisi

The ingenious thing about this recipe (beside it being a mashup of two childhood favorites) is that the Rice Krispies treats mimic the texture of waffle cones. Be sure to use premium quality ice cream because it’s churned with less air which makes it melt more slowly.

No-Churn Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

You don’t need an ice cream machine to make this decadent blueberry cheesecake ice cream. This is definitely a project anyone can take on. To develop a deeper flavor in her no-churn ice cream, Jocelyn Delk Adams first cooks the blueberries.

Ice pops

Red, White & Blue Popsicles

Claudia Amato/TODAY

These patriotic popsicles are as festive as the store-bought kind but are made with real fruit so you know that you (or your kids) are eating the good stuff. Each layer only has two or three ingredients.

Coffee Popsicles with Chocolate, Peanut Butter and Banana

Frances Largeman-Roth / TODAY

When a day out in the burning sun leaves you feeling less than peppy, try this cool treat that also has a kick of caffeine. These chocolaty coffee pops provide just the right amount for an early afternoon boost.

Kiwi Melon Popsicles

Frances Largeman-Roth / TODAY

The perfect snack on an active summer day, these pretty pops hit the mark with their blend of hydrating honeydew and potassium from the coconut water to help prevent muscle cramps. The kiwi kicks in plenty of vitamin C to help bust up those free radicals that form during intense exercise. There’s even a little salt to help replace the electrolytes you lose during those sweat sessions.

Blueberry, Chamomile and Mint Yogurt Popsicles

Frances Largeman-Roth / TODAY

When you’re in need of some chill time, reach for this calm and cool pop instead. Chamomile has long been known to help settle nerves, and may also provide a boost to your immune system. Mint can help relieve gas and indigestion, a common symptom of stress. Together, they make a mouthwatering treat great for everyone.

Breakfast Power Pops

Tyler Essary / TODAY

Smoothies are the perfect summer breakfast. Freezing them makes them even better. This recipe helps out on the occasions when we can’t finish our smoothie because we made a little too much.

Tropical Fruit Pops

Zach Pagano / TODAY

Who needs a beach when you can taste the tropics on a stick? Kids and adults alike love this sweet pop. You can change flavors up based on what you find at market, or use frozen fruit. Added to a little honey, lime juice and coconut, you’ll feel like your toes are in the sand.

Pink Lemonade Ice Pops

Elena Besser

These four-ingredient pops are made with fresh ingredients like pink coconut water, lemons, agave nectar and a pinch of salt to balance out the acidity. You may never use lemonade from concentrate again.

Superfood Ice Pops

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

These sweet and refreshing treats are jam-packed with good-for-you ingredients like fiber-rich fruits and greens, heart-healthy flaxseeds, plus one unique superfood: matcha.

Champagne Popsicles

Nathan Congleton

If you like to enjoy the occasional glass of wine, why not try it with an popsicle? It’s like the classic pairing of strawberries and champagne, only extra icy.

Strawberry Daiquiri Ice Pops

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

Strawberry daiquiris might seem like an innocent poolside cocktail but most bottled mixes are packed with tons of sugar (about 88 grams for 1 cup) and additives. Joy Bauer transforms the drink into a better-for-you ice pop for only 50 calories each plus 2 grams of fiber and a blast of vitamin C.

Frozen cakes and pies

Blondie Ice Cream Cake

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

At the end of a good meal, everyone will say they’re stuffed — until they see Martha Stewart’s ice cream cake. It is made from a rich, buttery blondie bar, vanilla ice cream (filled with more blondie) and a soft, chewy, totally insane chocolate-caramel topping.

Strawberry and Vanilla Ice Cream Cookie Cake

Samantha Seneviratne

Pre-made cookies and store-bought ice cream make a lovely and easy dessert. Assemble it ahead of time and let it chill in the freezer until you’re ready to dig in. Topped with some fresh strawberries, everyone will think you’ve become a gourmet pastry chef (we won’t tell if you don’t!).

Strawberry Ice Cream Cake

Laura Vitale

How pretty in pink is this no-bake, summery strawberry cake? The recipe is completely customizable and takes no effort to put together, with only 15 minutes of prep time, which is perfect when feeding a crowd.

Peanut Butter Ice Cream Cake

Siri Daly

Siri Daly turned husband Carson’s favorite sweets (ice cream and anything chocolate-peanut butter) into the kind of cake any Reese’s lover woudld swoon over. A crushed Oreo crust, peanut butter ice cram and a thick mini Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup topping … need we continue?

Frozen Ice Cream Sandwich Layer Cake

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

This frosty cake is elevated on the plate but comes from adding a few fun ingredients to store-bought ice cream sandwiches. Anyone who enjoys amaretto will surely be a fan.

The Pioneer Woman's Blackberry Icebox Cake

Ice box cakes are incredibly easy and make a great summer dessert. Ree Drummond’s cold and creamy recipe is made with layers of pound cake, blackberries and sweet whipped cream.

Martha Stewart's Brownie Sundae Ice Cream Cake

Johnny Miller /

Slices of rich brownie cake make dramatic stripes in this striking frozen dessert, which features all the fixings of an old-fashioned sundae — and then some. Two kinds of ice cream — vanilla and strawberry — are used as the fillings, along with crunchy peanut butter and crushed raspberries.

Strawberry Ice Cream Pie

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

“I love baking a fresh pie crust and then just filling it with fresh fruit and ice cream. It’s simple and really takes me back to my childhood,” Alex Guarnaschelli said of her summery recipe. “I think strawberry ice cream works best with a drizzle of aged or reduced balsamic vinegar for some grown-up acidity. If you want to get even more into summer, top the berries with some fresh basil or mint leaves.”

5-Ingredient Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Cake

Grace Parisi

Skip the store-bought cake (who knows how long it’s been sitting in that freezer?) and make your own! We cheat a little with the boxed cake mix, but let’s keep that between us. Everyone else can just think you’re a superhero. This chocolatey, minty dessert only has five ingredients and only takes 30 minutes to put together before freezing.

Cookies-and-Cream Icebox Cake

Elana Besser

This easy-peasy icebox cake is rich and flavorful but still light. Also, it only has five ingredients, takes 15 minutes to prepare and lasts for months in the freezer … unless it all gets eaten first!