Rainbow Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

These cold and colorful rainbow cookie ice cream sandwiches combine soft sprinkle-loaded sugar cookies with ice cream. You can customize the homemade ice cream sandwiches with different ice cream flavors and have fun with optional garnishes on the sides such as mini chocolate chips, chopped nuts, or more sprinkles.

stack of rainbow cookie ice cream sandwiches

Tell Me About these Rainbow Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

  • Texture: By starting with a super soft cookie, the frozen ice cream sandwiches are easy to eat. (Not rock hard like they can be.) Feel free to read more about that next. If you prefer brownies with your ice cream, you’ll love our brownie ice cream sandwiches recipe.
  • Flavor: The cookies are sweet and buttery with a hint of almond. Some ice cream flavors we usually use are vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, mint chocolate chip, and cookies & cream.
  • Ease: The homemade cookies use a basic homemade sugar cookie dough. Roll it out, chill it, then cut the dough into shapes before baking. Once they’ve cooled down, you can sandwich the cookies with ice cream. It’s easy to make a big batch in advance to save for a hot summer day. 
  • Time: You’ll need to bake the cookies and let them cool before you add the ice cream, so the process takes a few hours from start to finish. You can also make the cookies ahead of time if you want (see note).

stack of rainbow cookie ice cream sandwiches

Recipe Testing: Why Soft Cookies Work Best

We’re starting off with our sugar cookies. Readers have loved this recipe since we first published it in 2014. In fact, the cookies have been in our top 10 most popular recipes every single year since then.

The cookie dough produces soft sugar cookies, a texture that is KEY to the success of a cookie ice cream sandwich. A soft cookie is very important and here’s why: you don’t want a rock hard, crispy cookie that will then be frozen, making it even more difficult for biting. That could be borderline teeth-breaking.

Rather, start with a soft cookie that will be a little bendy and chewy even when frozen. And these soft sugar cookies – especially after soaking up some ice cream – are just that. Make sure you follow the bake time below, so the cookies remain nice and soft.

rainbow sprinkle cookie dough in a glass bowl

rainbow sprinkle cookie dough rolled out on a silpat baking mat

Cutting the Dough into Shapes

We use a 2 and 1/2 inch round cookie cutter to make these rainbow cookie ice cream sandwiches. Using a cookie cutter that size yields about 40-45 cookies, making a little more than 20 ice cream sandwiches. You can use any shape cookie cutter you’d like, but the ice cream sandwiches are easier to assemble if you use an uncomplicated shape such as a circle, heart, or square. 

If you don’t have a cookie cutter, you could certainly use a pizza cutter or sharp knife to cut the dough into squares.

A 2-3 inch size is best for these ice cream sandwiches.

rainbow sprinkle cookie dough rolled out on a silpat baking mat with a circle cookie cutter

stack of rainbow sprinkle sugar cookies

spoonfuls of various ice cream flavors in a straight line

sprinkle sugar cookies and cartons of ice cream with an ice cream scoop

stack of rainbow cookie ice cream sandwiches

More Frozen Treats

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stack of rainbow cookie ice cream sandwiches

Rainbow Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 11 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours
  • Yield: 20-25 ice cream sandwiches
  • Category: Frozen Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These cold and colorful rainbow cookie ice cream sandwiches combine soft sprinkle sugar cookies with ice cream. You can customize the homemade ice cream sandwiches with different ice cream flavors and have fun with optional garnishes on the sides such as mini chocolate chips, chopped nuts, or more sprinkles.


Ingredients

  • 2 and 1/4 cups (281g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup (170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
  • 1/2 cup rainbow sprinkles
  • half gallon or a full gallon of ice cream (depending how much you use)
  • optional for rolling: 1 cup mini chocolate chips, sprinkles, chopped nuts, and/or crushed M&Ms or Oreos

Instructions

  1. Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add the granulated sugar and beat on medium-high speed until creamed, about 2 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla, and almond extract (if using) and beat on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl and beat again as needed to combine.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. Beat in the sprinkles. If the dough seems too soft, you can add 1 Tablespoon more flour until it is a better consistency for rolling.
  4. Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. Roll each portion out onto a piece of parchment paper or a lightly floured silicone baking mat (I prefer the nonstick silicone mat) to about 1/4″ thickness. The rolled-out dough can be any shape, as long as it is evenly ¼-inch thick.
  5. Stack the pieces, with parchment paper between the two, onto a baking sheet and refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours and up to 2 days. If chilling for more than a couple hours, cover the top dough piece with a single piece of parchment paper.
  6. Once chilled, preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Remove one of the dough pieces from the refrigerator and using a 2.5-inch circle cookie cutter, cut into circles. Re-roll the remaining dough and continue cutting until all is used. Repeat with 2nd dough piece.
  7. Arrange cookies on a baking sheet 2 inches apart. Bake for 10-11 minutes, until lightly browned around the edges. Make sure you rotate the baking sheet halfway through bake time. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before assembling ice cream sandwiches.
  8. Assemble the sandwiches: Take a large scoop of ice cream and sandwich it between two cookies. Feel free to roll the sides in any of the options listed. Freeze the sandwiches until ready to eat.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: For longer storage or for making ahead, we like to wrap the cookie sandwiches individually in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store for up to 1 month.

8 Comments

  1. Hi, I made this and it was good! Very fun 🙂 I have a question…how can I make these into chocolate sugar cookies?

  2. Hey Sally! I am so excited to make these. I am doing an ice cream sandwich bar for the Fourth of July. Do you think I could use a 3 inch round cookie cutter instead of 2.5?

    1. Definitely! Bake time will be the same.

  3. Made these today with red white and blue sprinkles for our 4th of July picnic tomorrow! 🙂

  4. Sally these ice cream sandwiches are delicious, i made them for my husbands birthday and everyone loved them. Thanks you

  5. Can you make the cookies ahead of time like 1-2 days before making the sandwich?

    1. definitely!

  6. These turned out great!! I (accidentally) did not follow the “underbaked” instruction so instead I allowed everyone to make their own ice cream sandwiches immediately prior to eating which turned out to be a great alternative as we weren’t eating the cookies frozen. We used sprinkles, mini chocolate chips, and your salted Carmel sauce on them.

    Every recipe I make from you is a crowd pleaser Sally!! I was hoping you could do more rhubarb recipes this summer as I’ve already gotten a second harvest from my garden!

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