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Tiramisu Ice Cream Layer Cake

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Tiramisu Ice Cream Layer Cake is a no-bake, no-churn, frozen version of everyone’s favorite tiramisu. It consists of layers of ladyfingers soaked in coffee syrup and layered with vanilla and coffee mascarpone ice cream.

tiramisu ice cream layer cake

I love tiramisu so much. If you are a fan of tiramisu like me, I believe that you are gonna love this Tiramisu Ice Cream Layer Cake recipe.

This ice cream cake comes with a strong coffee flavor, rich creamy mascarpone, a hint of liqueur, and ladyfingers biscuits. The ice cream is perfectly soft and silky although it is made without an ice cream maker with all the classic tiramisu flavors. A hint of bitter cocoa powder on top is the perfect foil for all the creamy sweetness below.

How Do You Make Classic Tiramisu?

When making tiramisu, the ladyfingers are soaked in a coffee mixture of espresso, liqueur, and sugar. The crunchy cookies become soft once soaked in the mixture. Next, the ladyfingers are layered with a whipped mixture of eggs, sugar, liqueur, and mascarpone cheese. Tiramisu is finally finished with a dusting of rich cocoa powder, the key component of its taste and appearance.

Tiramisu Ice Cream Layer Cake Components

Classic tiramisu itself is made with espresso-dipped ladyfingers layered with mascarpone cream. Well, my version has all of that but I made it with a stronger coffee flavor. Here are the components of my recipe:

  • Ladyfingers. They are finger-shaped pieces of biscuits. When dipped with espresso, they become soft like a sponge cake texture without completely disintegrating.
  • Coffee syrup. This is the liquid for dipping the ladyfingers. It is made from a mixture of instant coffee, sugar, water, and liqueur. You can also use strong espresso to substitute instant coffee. If you taste the syrup all by itself it would be too strong. You will need it strong here because the flavor is muted in frozen foods.
  • Mascarpone Ice Cream. This mascarpone ice cream is made just like for making the mascarpone cream in classic tiramisu. Egg yolks and sugar are cooked over a double boiler until thick and smooth. Then, it is incorporated with mascarpone and whipped cream until well combined. I also add a little bit of liqueur here because alcohol can make the ice cream softer.
  • Coffee Mascarpone Ice Cream. This is the same component with mascarpone ice cream, but the coffee flavor is added here just to make each layer tastes different and not boring. Instant coffee is a key ingredient here because it produces the strongest coffee flavor. You can absolutely skip adding the coffee and make it plain. 
  • Cocoa Powder Dusting. Last but not least, finish the cake with cocoa powder dusting.
tiramisu ice cream layer cake
tiramisu ice cream layer cake

The Secret of Soft Ice Cream

If you wonder how I get to have a creamy, smooth texture, a soft consistency, and a full body in my ice cream without using an ice cream maker, make sure not to skip these ingredients.

  • Egg yolks. Egg yolks improve stability and reduce the ice cream’s tendency to melt. It also works to thicken the ice cream base and gives the finished ice cream a richer taste and creamier mouthfeel.
  • Liqueur. Adding alcohol lowers the freezing point of a liquid and creates softer ice cream. Make sure not to add too much because it can make the ice cream soupy and not freezing.
  • Whipped cream. The air makes the ice cream light, fluffy, and easy to scoop. Although the recipe does not call for using an ice cream maker, you still get some fluffiness from the air trapped in whipped cream. 

Tips for Cutting Ice Cream Cake

Cutting a solid ice cream cake may sound like a big challenge. The key to cutting ice cream cake perfectly lies in how to keep the knife warm. Make sure to dip a metal knife into hot water before each cut, then wipe it clean before slicing. Slice into the cake with a warm and dry knife. Repeat the dipping, wiping, and slicing until you get your desired number of portions.

tiramisu ice cream layer cake
tiramisu ice cream layer cake

More Tiramisu Recipes

Hey tiramisu lovers, don’t forget to check out also these tiramisu recipes!

tiramisu ice cream layer cake
4.6 from 9 votes

Tiramisu Ice Cream Layer Cake

Tiramisu Ice Cream Layer Cake is a no-bake, no-churn, frozen version of everyone's favorite tiramisu. It consists of layers of ladyfingers soaked in coffee syrup and layered with vanilla and coffee mascarpone ice cream.
Author: Jaja Bakes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 8
Tap or hover to scale!
Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Additional Time30 minutes
Total Time1 hour 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 16 ladyfingers
  • Cocoa powder, for dusting

Coffee Syrup

  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) hot water
  • 1-2 tbsp instant coffee
  • 2 tbsp castor sugar
  • 2 tbsp liqueur

Mascarpone Ice Cream

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup (67 gr) castor sugar
  • 8 oz (225 gr) mascarpone cream, softened
  • 1 cup (240 ml) heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp liqueur
  • 1-2 tbsp instant coffee
  • 2 tbsp hot water

Instructions

Coffee Syrup

  • In a small bowl, combine hot water, instant coffee, castor sugar, and liquor until well incorporated. Cool completely before using. Set aside.

Mascarpone Ice Cream

  • In the heatproof mixing bowl, add egg yolks and castor sugar and start whisking with a hand whisk or handheld electric mixer until well incorporated.
  • Set the bowl over the saucepan of simmering water (bain-marie). Keep whisking the eggs until they reach 154-160F/68-70ºC with a digital thermometer. Make sure to keep whisking the eggs because the temperature is close enough to turn them into scrambled eggs. The cooked mixture should be pale, thick, and smooth. Once the mixture reaches 154-160F/68-70ºC, immediately remove the bowl from the saucepan and let it cool slightly.
  • While waiting for the egg mixture to cool, whisk the heavy whipping cream and vanilla extract with a hand whisk or hand mixer until the cream starts to thicken and stiff peaks form. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, soften the mascarpone cheese. Add the egg mixture and liqueur. Whisk until well combined. Add half of the whipped cream and fold the mixture until well incorporated. Add the remaining whipped cream and fold again until the mixture is well combined.
  • Divide the mascarpone mixture into two bowls evenly.
  • In a small bowl, combine instant coffee with hot water until the coffee is dissolved. Pour the coffee mixture into a bowl of the mascarpone mixture and fold with a spatula until well incorporated. Now, you have a bowl of the vanilla mascarpone mixture and a bowl of the coffee mascarpone mixture. Refrigerate the mixture until using it.

Assemble

  • Line a 9.5x5x3-inch/24x12x7 cm pan with a cling wrap.
  • Pour vanilla mascarpone mixture into the lined pan. Level the top with a spatula. Tap the pan on the work surface to remove air bubbles. Freeze for 30 minutes. This is your bottom layer.
  • One at a time, gently dip both sides of ladyfingers into the coffee syrup, then place over the top of the mascarpone mixture. I use 8 ladyfingers for this layer.
  • Pour coffee mascarpone mixture on top. Level the top with a spatula. tap the pan on the work surface to remove air bubbles.
  • One at a time, gently dip just the bottom of the remaining ladyfingers into the coffee syrup. Place over the top of the coffee mascarpone mixture with the soaked part on the bottom.
  • Cover the pan with a cling wrap. Freeze for at least 4 hours or overnight until firm.
  • Run a knife along the edges of the pan to loosen the ice cream from the mold if necessary. Gently remove the ice cream cake from the pan and discard the cling wrap.
  • Dust the top with cocoa powder before serving. To cut the ice cream cake easily, make sure to warm the knife into hot water and wipe it clean before each cut. Enjoy.

Notes

Use 1 tbsp instant coffee for coffee syrup and coffee mascarpone ice cream for moderate coffee flavor. Use 2 tbsp instant coffee for super-strong coffee flavor.
Use decaf coffee for a caffeine-free tiramisu ice cream.
Liqueur option for Tiramisu: Marsala wine, dark rum, brandy, coffee-flavored liqueur like Kahlua, or almond liqueur like Amaretto.

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 409kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 184mg | Sodium: 62mg | Potassium: 111mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 1060IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 82mg | Iron: 1mg
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