Weekend Musings: Banana Nice Cream

For starters, I hate the term nice cream. I would much rather refer to it as “banana soft serve,” as it was originally known, at least to me.

Probably because I hate the word nice. It is a meaningless word that plagues the dialogue of many cultures, notably my home Midwestern community.

When I was home for my brother’s wedding, I heard the following in the span of a couple hours: What a nice day this turned out to be! She’s a nice girl. He’s such a nice guy. They are a nice couple. Your family is so nice. It was nice being here today. What a nice wedding! It’s so nice to see such a good couple. It’s nice you were able to come from New York to be here. Is it nice there? That’s nice.

That’s just one example. My dislike for the word nice goes farther back than the wedding two months ago. Anyway, since “nice cream” has caught on so much, and I rarely hear anyone refer to it as “banana soft serve” anymore, it would be futile for me to try. It’s not going to happen.

I have a lot of opinions about banana soft serve nice cream, beyond just its name. Personally, I think I make better *ahem* nice cream than anyone else, but we all have our preferences. If you have struggled to find nice cream enjoyable, you might want to consider some of my tips!

Raspberry Nice Cream

photo credit: Whole Foods Market

  1. Make it thick. Don’t add water/milk. If your blender or processor is weak, add as little liquid as possible. I add about a tablespoon of water to mine, just enough to aid my dinky little processor. Remember: you’re making an ice cream alternative. Ice cream is not melted and runny like a smoothie. If you make your nice cream runny, it will just taste like a smoothie. Do you want ice cream, or do you want a smoothie? You decide.
  2. Peel your banana before freezing it. Peel and slice your banana, and THEN freeze it. Not only will this make the process no less than FIFTY TIMES EASIER, but it will also taste better. For some reason, freezing it inside the peel gives it this sour, overly ripe flavor. Yuck.
  3. Don’t go crazy adding other fruits. I stick to only bananas, and once in a while I add a few strawberries. Again, does ice cream have a bunch of pineapple or blueberries or apples? No. You know what does? Smoothies. A lot of people add fruits to their nice cream, and they love it. But those people are really making smoothies, in my opinion. 😉
  4. Add vanilla extract. And cocoa powder, ideally. Alternatively, add peppermint extract and chocolate chips. You will be amazed at how close this rivals actual mint chocolate chip ice cream! In fact, if you think about your favorite ice cream flavor, there’s a good chance you can recreate it with nice cream.
  5. Consider texture. Let’s be honest, the best ice cream usually contains nuts or crunchy chocolate bits. Or we add them as a topping. The same is true for nice cream! I like to stir in cacao nibs (they stay crunchy!), chocolate chips, nuts, or even pomegranate arils if I am lucky enough to have some around.

Again, these are my (very strong) preferences. There is no wrong way to make nice cream.

What’s your favorite way to enjoy nice cream?

About Lauren Smith

Lauren is a herbivore, Slytherin, and connoisseur of oats. She is a former teacher who is currently studying to earn a master's degree in curriculum development. You can follow her on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook.

5 Responses to Weekend Musings: Banana Nice Cream

  1. Caroline Brost says:

    Our two favorites: 1. peanut butter and cocoa powder, and 2. cherries, vanilla, and mini chocolate chips. I always put a little almond milk in it, too.

  2. Heidi says:

    I love love love making “nice cream”. I don’t know why or who even came up with that silly name. Is it a healthy way of saying it? LOL Anyway my favorite way to have nice cream is by adding cocao powder, marshmallows and then sprinkling crushed graham crackers on top! I also love adding granola to plain nice cream! Its so versatile 🙂

  3. Haha, I also can’t stand the term ‘nice cream’. That’s because regular ice cream is nice too! (Actually, a lot more than nice). But that’s me and my dislike of moralizing food choices (not surprisingly, I really can’t stand it when people call banana soft serve ‘clean nice cream’. Ugh).

    Anyway, I 100% agree with you re vanilla extract, mix-ins, and not adding milk/water. But I actually love adding fruit :O Especially frozen mango or mixed berries!

  4. Christine says:

    Your post had perfect timing, as I froze some overripe bananas this morning to make banana soft serve tonight. I’ve tried lots of mix-ins and add-ins, but my favorite way to have banana soft serve is plain, with a little vanilla extract. Then you can be creative with the toppings. I topped mine tonight with your Choco PB2 Sauce.

  5. TBH, I call “nice cream” “nana ice cream” instead! I’ve failed nana ice cream SO many times, however, whether I make them too liquidy or my frozen bananas just melt too quickly! 🙁 However, I’ve found that using vegan protein powder, at least 3 bananas and even adding peanut flour or cacao powder totally work!

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