Olive Oil on Ice Cream: A Surprising and Delicious Combination



Olive Oil on Ice Cream

Ice cream has always been a beloved dessert, but have you ever considered adding a drizzle of olive oil to your scoop? While it may sound unconventional, the combination of olive oil and ice cream is a surprisingly delicious and indulgent treat. Not only does the olive oil add a unique flavor profile, but it also enhances the creaminess and smoothness of the ice cream. In this article, we will explore the fascinating world of olive oil on ice cream, its health benefits, and some creative ways to enjoy this delectable pairing. So grab a spoon and get ready to discover a whole new level of dessert satisfaction!

The Versatility of Olive Oil

Olive oil is a staple in Mediterranean cuisine, known for its rich flavors and numerous health benefits. Traditionally used in savory dishes, olive oil also has the ability to elevate sweet treats like ice cream. Its fruity, nutty, and sometimes even spicy notes can beautifully complement the creamy base of the ice cream, creating a truly decadent experience.

Health Benefits of Olive Oil

Not only does olive oil add an incredible flavor to ice cream, but it also brings along several health benefits. Extra virgin olive oil, in particular, is rich in monounsaturated fats, antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory properties. These components have been linked to various health benefits, including heart health, reduced inflammation, and improved brain function. So, when you indulge in olive oil on ice cream, you can feel good about treating yourself to a dessert that not only satisfies your taste buds but also supports your well-being.

Exploring Flavor Profiles

One of the fascinating aspects of olive oil on ice cream is the wide range of flavor profiles you can experiment with. Just like different varieties of olive oil have distinct tastes, the choice of olive oil can significantly impact the overall flavor of the ice cream. From fruity and grassy to nutty and peppery, there's an olive oil out there to suit every palate. Whether you prefer a delicate vanilla base or a more adventurous pistachio flavor, there's a perfect olive oil pairing waiting to be discovered.

The Perfect Pairing: Olive Oil and Ice Cream

Now that we've established the unique qualities of olive oil and its compatibility with ice cream, let's dive into the art of creating the perfect pairing. While you can certainly enjoy a simple drizzle of olive oil on a scoop of your favorite ice cream, there are endless possibilities for taking it to the next level. Here are some creative and delicious ways to enjoy olive oil on ice cream:

1. Classic Elegance: Vanilla Ice Cream with Olive Oil and Sea Salt

Start with a creamy scoop of vanilla ice cream and drizzle it with a high-quality extra virgin olive oil. The olive oil adds a luxurious silkiness to the ice cream, while a sprinkling of flaky sea salt enhances the flavors and creates a delightful contrast. The combination of sweet, creamy, salty, and fruity notes is a true symphony for your taste buds.

2. Nutty Delight: Pistachio Ice Cream with Spicy Olive Oil

If you're a fan of pistachio ice cream, you'll love the addition of a spicy olive oil. The earthy and slightly sweet flavors of pistachio harmonize beautifully with the peppery notes of the olive oil. The result is a rich and complex flavor profile that will take your pistachio ice cream to new heights.

3. Fruity Fusion: Fruit Sorbet with Fruity Olive Oil

For a refreshing and vibrant twist, try pairing a fruit sorbet with a fruity olive oil. The natural sweetness of the sorbet is beautifully complemented by the fruity notes of the olive oil, creating a harmonious balance of flavors. Whether it's a tangy lemon sorbet or a luscious raspberry sorbet, the addition of fruity olive oil will elevate the experience to a whole new level.

4. Decadent Indulgence: Chocolate Ice Cream with Rich Olive Oil

Chocolate and olive oil may seem like an unlikely combination, but trust us, it works wonders. The smooth and velvety texture of chocolate ice cream is enhanced by the richness of the olive oil, creating a truly indulgent treat. Choose a high-quality dark chocolate ice cream for a more intense flavor experience.

5. Exotic Adventure: Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream with Grassy Olive Oil

If you're feeling adventurous, why not try pairing matcha green tea ice cream with a grassy olive oil? The earthy and slightly bitter flavors of matcha are beautifully complemented by the grassy notes of the olive oil. This combination creates a unique and refreshing taste experience that will transport you to the serene tea gardens of Japan.

Where to Find Olive Oil on Ice Cream

Now that you're eager to try olive oil on ice cream, you may be wondering where you can indulge in this delightful combination. Fear not, we've got you covered! Here are some establishments in New York City where you can sample this intriguing pairing:

  1. Leo, Williamsburg, Brooklyn: Leo offers seasonally driven ice cream creations, including a melon sorbet topped with Sicilian olive oil. The combination of fruity sorbet and creamy olive oil is a match made in dessert heaven.

  2. Lilia, Williamsburg, Brooklyn: Lilia's "Italian Job" sundae features vanilla soft-serve gelato enveloped in extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt and fennel pollen. Add a luxurious truffle finish for an extra special treat.

  3. Caffé Panna, Manhattan: Caffé Panna is known for its creative ice cream concoctions. They use Sicilian extra virgin olive oil as a topping for their specialty sundaes, creating a delightful contrast of flavors.

  4. L'industrie, Williamsburg: L'industrie offers rotating flavors of gelato and sorbetto, including a lemon sorbetto with sea salt and spicy Chilean olive oil. The combination of zesty lemon and spicy olive oil is a refreshing summer delight.

The Art of Making Olive Oil Ice Cream at Home

While sampling olive oil on ice cream at various establishments is a delightful experience, why not try making it at home? With a few simple ingredients and a good ice cream maker, you can create your own customized olive oil ice cream flavors. Here's a basic recipe to get you started:

Homemade Olive Oil Ice Cream Recipe


  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt


  1. In a saucepan, heat the heavy cream, whole milk, and sugar over medium heat until it reaches a simmer.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks until smooth. Slowly pour the hot cream mixture into the egg yolks while whisking continuously to temper the eggs.
  3. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens and coats the back of a spoon.
  4. Remove from heat and strain the custard into a clean bowl. Stir in the olive oil, vanilla extract, and salt.
  5. Cover the bowl and refrigerate the custard until completely chilled, preferably overnight.
  6. Once chilled, churn the custard in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  7. Transfer the churned ice cream to a lidded container and freeze for at least 4 hours, or until firm.
  8. Serve the homemade olive oil ice cream on its own or with your favorite toppings, such as fresh fruit or a drizzle of balsamic glaze.


Olive oil on ice cream may sound unconventional, but it's a delightful and surprisingly delicious combination that you must try. The unique flavors of olive oil, combined with the creaminess of ice cream, create a truly indulgent treat. Whether you sample it at a specialized ice cream parlor or make it at home, the experience of olive oil on ice cream is a journey of flavors and textures that will delight your taste buds. So go ahead, embrace the unexpected, and savor the luxurious combination of olive oil and ice cream. Your dessert game will never be the same again!

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