• Yield: 12 to 16 sandwiches

The essential sandwich in any ice cream sandwich arsenal is the classic chocolate cookie, bookending a simple vanilla ice cream.

While there are endless combinations possible when sandwiching ice cream between cookies, you can never go wrong with the tried-and-true classic: creamy vanilla ice cream, bookended by soft, intensely chocolatey cookies. A little coconut oil adds richness to this cream-free treat, making a lusciously smooth ice cream that will leave even the biggest skeptics of non-dairy ice cream licking tender chocolate cookie crumbs from their fingers.

Vegan Ice Cream Sandwiches Vegan Ice Cream Sandwiches

Classic Chocolate Cookies

Makes: about 2 dozen cookies

  • 1/3 cup nondairy margarine, at room temperature 

  • 2/3 cup evaporated cane sugar

  • 2 tablespoons nondairy milk

  • 1/4 teaspoon mild vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

  • 1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa, sifted 

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a medium bowl, cream together the margarine and sugar. Stir in the milk, vinegar, and vanilla. In a small bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix thoroughly.

3. Turn out onto the prepared baking sheet. Place a sheet of waxed paper over the dough and roll out into a square about 1/4 inch thick. Remove the waxed paper and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the edges are set and it's slightly puffy. It will seem soft and not fully baked, but it is.

4. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 15 minutes on the baking sheet on a wire rack. Carefully cut the cookies into the desired shape. You can use a glass or biscuit cutter to make them round, or maximize the dough by cutting them into evenly sized squares.

5. Remove the cookies from the sheet and allow to finish cooling on the rack.

Vanilla Soy Ice Cream
Makes: 1 1/4 quarts

  • 3/4 cup evaporated cane sugar

  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons tapioca starch 

  • 2 1/2 cups soy or hemp milk (full fat)

  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1. In a large saucepan, combine the sugar and tapioca starch and whisk until incorporated. Pour in the milk, whisking to incorporate. Over medium heat, bring the mixture to a boil, whisking frequently. Once it reaches a boil, lower the heat to medium-low and whisk constantly until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the coconut oil and vanilla, and mix to combine.

2. Transfer the mixture to a heat-resistant bowl and let it cool completely.

3. Pour the mixture into the bowl of a 1 1/2- or 2-quart ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer's instructions. Store in an airtight container in the freezer for at least 2 hours before assembling the sandwiches.

To Make the Sandwiches

Let the ice cream soften slightly so it's easy to scoop. Place half of the cookies, bottoms up, on a clean surface. Scoop one generous scoop of ice cream, about 1/3 cup, onto the top of each cookie. Top the ice cream with the remaining cookies, with the cookie bottoms touching the ice cream. Gently press down on the cookies to level them. Wrap each sandwich in plastic wrap or waxed paper and return to the freezer for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Disclosure: Kris Holechek Peters is a cookbook author who also works at American Public Media, which produces The Splendid Table.

From Vegan Ice Cream Sandwiches by Kris Holechek Peters, Ulysses Press 2014.