Easy 5 Layer Ice Cream Cake

Cool off with a slice of no-bake ice cream cake! This easy summertime treat combines two of your favorite ice cream flavors, hot fudge, homemade whipped cream, and sprinkles– all on top of an Oreo cookie crust. Because this cake needs to freeze for at least 12 hours prior to serving, it’s a great make ahead dessert option for birthday parties, BBQs, Father’s Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, and more.

slice of ice cream cake on a white plate with a fork

We’re tackling a never before seen recipe on Sally’s Baking Addiction today– ice cream cake! This easy and refreshing treat is made for summertime celebrations. With 5 layers to love, it keeps us smiling, satisfied, and cool all season long.

side view showing all of the layers of ice cream cake in a glass baking dish

Why You’ll Love This Ice Cream Cake

  • 5 layers of decadence
  • Easy no-bake recipe
  • Use your favorite ice cream flavors
  • Something for everyone to enjoy
  • Ribbons of fudge throughout
  • Topped with cheerful sprinkles
  • A wonderful make ahead dessert

carton of chocolate ice cream with ice cream scoop

5 Layers to Love

There are 5 layers in this ice cream beauty– let’s review each one:

  1. Oreo Cookie Crust: This cookie crust comes together with just 2 ingredients: Oreo cookies and melted butter. Be sure to use the entire cookie (the chocolate cookies and the cream filling) when pulsing the cookies into crumbs.
  2. Chocolate Ice Cream 
  3. Peanut Butter Cup Ice Cream
  4. Hot Fudge: Use a store bought variety or make your own! I used this homemade hot fudge sauce recipe from Brown Eyed Baker and it’s easily the best I’ve ever tasted. It yields a little more than we need for this cake, but I’m certainly not upset with leftover hot fudge.
  5. Whipped Cream & Sprinkles: We top with homemade whipped cream for the final layer. You’ll appreciate how quickly and easily it comes together! For a finishing touch, garnish with colorful sprinkles for the ultimate dessert.

You can use any flavors of ice cream you want. Chocolate and peanut butter is a favorite combination in my family, but you could also try: chocolate + cookies ‘n’ cream, vanilla + strawberry, chocolate + mint chip, chocolate + vanilla, or coffee + cookies ‘n’ cream. The options are endless!

Here are a few step photos of the process. It’s really not as much work as it seems, though you will take a few trips back and forth from the freezer. You’ll find a video tutorial and the full recipe at the bottom of the page.

Oreo cookie crumbs in a glass measuring cup

After you make the Oreo cookie crust and tightly pack it into the pan, freeze it for 15 minutes. During this time, get your first flavor of ice cream ready (below). Spread this ice cream onto the crust and freeze it.

2 images of softened chocolate ice cream in a glass bowl and spreading chocolate ice cream into glass baking dish

Get your second flavor of ice cream ready. Spread this ice cream onto the first layer of ice cream and freeze it (below).

spreading softened peanut butter cup ice cream onto chocolate ice cream layer in a glass baking dish

While the 2 ice cream layers are freezing, prepare your hot fudge. You’ll let the hot fudge sauce cool down after making it, but it will never be as cold as the ice cream layer underneath it. Because of the difference in temperature, the hot fudge and the top layer of ice cream swirl together– this is to be expected. Place the cake back in the freezer for 15 minutes before spreading the whipped cream on top.

Make the whipped cream. Spread this on top of the hot fudge and add sprinkles (below). Freeze until ready to serve! As the cake freezes, the inside layers stay separate, but move around quite a bit creating beautiful layers.

spreading whipped cream layer of ice cream cake into glass baking dish

Ice Cream Cake Success Tips

  1. Soften the ice cream and stir it around in a bowl to smooth it out before layering. Stirring the ice cream creates a uniform texture which makes layering so much easier.
  2. Freeze the cake for 15-30 minutes in between adding each layer.
  3. Make sure you have at least an hour to prepare the cake. See #2.
  4. Follow the Oreo crust recipe below. More butter than written below (we use 1/2 cup today) made the frozen crust way too firm and cutting was quite difficult.
  5. If using store bought hot fudge, slightly heat it up. This makes it a little easier to spread on top of the ice cream. The hot fudge and the top layer of ice cream will sort of mesh together as you spread and that’s OK!
  6. At a minimum, let the cake freeze overnight (and up to a few days).
  7. For clean cuts, run a sharp knife under hot water before slicing.

Ice Cream Cake Video Tutorial

Homemade Whipped Cream

Homemade whipped cream is so easy to make and the perfect topping for our ice cream cake. And, it’s nice to have a homemade element to this cake especially if you’re using store bought ice cream and hot fudge. You only need 3 simple ingredients to whip up a batch– it’s light, refreshing, and adds a wonderful texture to today’s frozen dessert.

Print
clock clock icon cutlery cutlery icon flag flag icon folder folder icon instagram instagram icon pinterest pinterest icon facebook facebook icon print print icon squares squares icon heart heart icon heart solid heart solid icon
slice of ice cream cake on a white plate with a fork

Easy 5 Layer Ice Cream Cake

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 12+ hours or overnight
  • Yield: 12 servings
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: No Bake
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Simple and divine 5 layer ice cream cake sitting on top of an Oreo crust. Cool off and celebrate with this easy recipe!


Ingredients

  • 36 Oreos (1 standard package)
  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 quart chocolate ice cream, softened
  • 1 quart your choice flavor ice cream, softened (I used peanut butter cup)
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (420g) hot fudge (store-bought or yummy homemade)

Whipped Cream

  • 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream
  • 2 Tablespoons (15g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • sprinkles

Instructions

  1. Make the crust: In a food processor or blender, pulse the whole Oreos into a fine crumb. Stir the cookie crumbs and melted butter together, then press into a 9×13 pan. (No need to grease the pan prior.) Make sure it is very tightly packed– I use the back of a spatula to firmly press it in. Freeze for 15 minutes.
  2. During that time, place the softened chocolate ice cream in a bowl and give it a good stir to rid any frozen lumps. You want a nice smooth, soft ice cream. Spread it on top of the frozen crust. Freeze for 15-30 minutes. (Closer to 30 minutes is ideal.)
  3. During that time, place the 2nd ice cream flavor into a bowl and stir it until it is smooth and very soft. Carefully spread on top of the chocolate ice cream. Freeze for 15-30 minutes. (Closer to 30 minutes is ideal.)
  4. Make sure the hot fudge is spreadable consistency. You may have to slightly heat it if using store-bought. Spread it on top of the ice cream as best you can. Because it is not as cold as the ice cream layer, the two will slightly mesh together as you spread. That’s ok. Freeze for 15-30 minutes. (Closer to 30 minutes is ideal.)
  5. Make the whipped cream: Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the heavy cream, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form, about 4-5 minutes. Spread on top of hot fudge layer, then top with sprinkles. Cover with aluminum foil and freeze for at least 12 hours before serving (and up to a few days!).
  6. Use a very sharp knife to cut, making sure you are cutting into the crust. Keep leftovers in the freezer.

Notes

  1. Ice Cream: 1 quart of ice cream is 2/3 of a standard 1.5 quart container. So you’ll use a little more than half of the container for each ice cream layer.

Keywords: ice cream cake, easy ice cream cake

71 Comments

  1. Hi Sally,
    I’d like to make this with an added layer of brownies. Where would I do that and what adjustments would I need to make everywhere? I could keep just 1 layer of ice cream if that’s too many layers…

    1. Hi Kristen, that would require a bit of testing. Though I haven’t tried this, I would use my seriously fudgy homemade brownies recipe. Bake & cool them, add a layer of softened ice cream on top. Freeze for about 30 minutes, then add your hot fudge/whipped cream and freeze again until completely frozen. You may also enjoy these homemade brownie ice cream sandwiches.

      1. It got way too dense/rich with the changes, I will stick with the original recipe next time! The brownie didn’t work out with the ice cream because it got too hard in the freezer. A light cake could have worked 🙂 giving 5 stars for your original recipe!

  2. Great results, both taste-wise and visually! I liked that you can take a break and do other things while the layers are spending time in the freezer. You can start this a few days ahead, because the more frozen the previous layer is before you proceed, the more perfect the layers look at the end when you cut it. I did spray the bottom of the pan lightly with cooking spray. When pressing the cookie crumb/butter mixture into the pan, don’t press so firmly that it will be difficult to get out. Press so that the bottom is thoroughly covered and freeze it well! After adding the ice cream layers, I actually waited a day to add the homemade hot fudge layer, so the seepage into the ice cream was minimal. I think the real key to making this is complete freezing between additions. This beats the store bought ice cream cakes because you can control the quality of the ice cream and the homemade fudge sauce and real whipped cream are far superior to the ingredients of the store-bought versions. Thanks, Sally ! The whole family loved it!

  3. Linda Veraska says:

    I used half a gallon of ice cream for each layer and forgot the to put the whipped cream on the cake before I served it. I had plenty of time, so I doubled the freezing time between layers and let the cake freeze overnight. The cake was a hit and tasted better than the ice cream cake we usually buy at the store. I will definitely make this again!

  4. I made this recipe with chocolate and vanilla ice cream, and added a layer of crushed oreos coated in magic shell to mimic carvel crunchies, and it was absolutely perfect! Love this recipe! Thanks Sally!

  5. This is such an easy to follow and delicious ice cream cake recipe! Made it for my son’s birthday and making it for my mother in law who requested it and loved it from that previous birthday!

    1. Kristi Bessette says:

      I’m so excited to share this with my family today. I used a springform pan for ease of removal.

  6. I made this cake in a spring form round pan. Topped it with Oreo halves and peanut butter cups halves for an extra special touch! Really turned out beautifully! Excellent recipe! Will use again.

    1. Oh I’m glad to read this! I was wondering how it would work in a spring form pan. I plan on making it this way- thanks for posting!! 🙂

  7. Mara Esguerra says:

    Followed your recipe but still ended up with the cookie crust too hard to cut through. But otherwise, this recipe is easy to do and my birthday girl loved it.

  8. Can I sub cool whip for the whipping cream?

  9. Great recipe! I used the 1/2 cup butter for my Oreo crust, and it was too firm. Would the crust come out softer if I decrease the butter to 4-6 tablespoons? I’ll definitely make this again…thank you Sally for another tasty treat.

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Marisa, reducing the butter will help because the butter is what solidifies the crust. Having less means the crust won’t be as hard. See if reducing down to 6 Tablespoons helps. Glad you enjoyed this recipe!

  10. This was a HUGE hit at a BBQ I went to this weekend. The store ran out of hot fudge (huh?) so I improvised and put a layer of kit kats in the middle for a chocolatey crunch! I used snickers ice cream and cookies and cream ice cream. I used a little less butter and the crust cut perfectly. Looking forward to making all different versions of this (thinking something with pretzels (I love salt and crunch with creamy sugary ice cream!) thank you for this recipe:)

  11. Have been making this recipe for years and my boys always request it for their birthday “cake”. It is my GO TO summer treat and it’s so easy to switch it up, making a salted caramel version now with pretzel crust! I love having this recipe in my back pocket!

    1. Clair Tolton says:

      I give this recipe a 4/5 as I followed exactly and the crust was quite difficult to cut through, otherwise absolutely delicious! This is perfect as I love ice cream cake but I am quite far from a store to buy one or have one made.
      Patrice..I would LOVE for you to list your flavour combinations you have used! Awaiting impatiently for your response

  12. Can i leave out the fudge without changing anything

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Sure!

  13. This recipe looks fantastic. I have a question regarding softening the ice cream. Do you soften it in the microwave, or room temperature?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      At room temperature!

  14. Jennifer Gervens says:

    Thanks for breaking this down and making it simple. Ice cream cake recipes usually intimidate me. My son loves it so I think I’ll make this recipe for his birthday next month.

  15. Do you think this could work in a silicone cake mold and then pop out to be decorated?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Hannah, we haven’t tested ice cream cake in a silicone mold, but please let us know how it goes if you give it a try – that sounds like a fun way to serve ice cream cake!

1 2

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

With kitchen-tested quality recipes and step-by-step tutorials, my goal is to give you the confidence to bake and cook from scratch.

Sally's signature

Recipes You’ll Love

Archives

Categories

Join the community on the 1st of every month as we tackle a new challenge recipe. Review Sally's Baking Challenge FAQ page if you have any questions.

View More

A tradition since 2013, every December we countdown to Christmas with 10 new cookie recipes in a row!

View More

The first week of every November is all about Thanksgiving Pies.

View More

My Cookbooks

Sally's Cookbooks

About Sally

Welcome to my Kitchen!

I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally

×
Skip to toolbar