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plum ice cream icebox cake

this plum ice cream icebox cake is made from layers of buttery pound cake, tart plum sauce, vanilla ice cream and fresh whipped cream. this quick and easy freezer dessert captures all the textures and flavors of late summer.

it’s the first week of august. smack in the middle of summer. the last few weeks of carefree days before school and fall activities start up. i’m naturally a fan of autumn. but, i’m not in rush to push through this special micro season of late summer/early autumn. the next couple of months of recipes are designed to capture the best of the waining days of ripe summer produce, while welcoming the cozy flavors of autumn. this plum ice cream icebox cake brings in warmth and coziness from the buttery pound cake. tart summer plums are perfection when paired with cold creamy ice cream. this ice box cake takes some prep work, but comes together in under five minutes and let’s your freezer do all the hard work!

plum ice cream icebox cake

in a few words, this icebox cake is

  • buttery
  • sweet
  • tart
  • creamy
  • a blend of cozy cake and bright summer fruit
  • easy to assemble
  • sets in the freezer
  • perfect for fans of ice cream cake!

what is an icebox cake?

an icebox cake is a no bake dessert that requires absolutely no cooking or baking. therefore, its super easy to assemble and requires minimal prep time. just some chill time in the fridge or freezer. the waiting is always the hardest part! 

  • thin sweet crackers such as graham, wafers or gingersnaps. in the case of this plum ice cream icebox cake, we are going with buttery pound cake!
  • sweetened cream, custard or ice cream
  • seasonal fruit, like tart summer plums

assembly is similarly easy to do. first, layer the container with cake (or cookies/biscuits), next, fill each layer with ice cream (or sweetened cream) and seasonal fruit, jam or syrup. finally it’s time to chill the cake in the fridge or freezer. that’s it! just a bit of layering and some time in the freezer. it’s the perfect summer cake if you ask me!

what do I need to make this plum ice cream icebox cake?

glad you asked! you’ll need a handful of simple ingredients to make this freezer treat:

most icebox cakes are made of a few basic ingredients:

  • all purpose flour
  • cake flour
  • baking powder
  • salt
  • butter
  • granulated sugar
  • lemon (zest)
  • vanilla extract
  • eggs
  • sour cream
  • whole milk
  • plums (or your preferred stone fruit : cherries, peaches, nectarines, etc)
  • vanilla ice cream
  • whipped cream

from these ingredients you will make the homemade pound cake, quick plum syrup, ice cream layer and whipped cream topping. if you want to make this even simpler, opt for using store bought frozen pound cake.

plum ice cream icebox cake

do I need any special baking tools to make this ice box cake?

many ice box cakes get their iconic shape from layering them in a loaf pan. this plum ice cream icebox cake is no different! you’ll need:

  • stand mixer with paddle attachment
    • or electric hand mixer with beaters
    • to make the pound cake layers
  • 9×13 cake pan
    • to bake the cake layers
  • plastic wrap
    • for wrapping the cake layers
    • for protecting the cake when it’s setting the the freezer
    • helps the cake lift out of the pan
  • medium sauce pan
    • to make the quick plum syrup
  • mesh strainer
    • for separating the pulp from the juice to make the syrup
  • small loaf pan (one pound)
    • this is typically a 8.5×4.5
    • a 9×5 also works for this, especially if using store bought pound cake
  • icing spatula
    • helps to smooth the layers and whipped cream coating
plum ice cream icebox cake

tips and tricks for the most delicious ice cream icebox cake 

  • use fresh, quality ingredients 
    • from the pound cake to the ice cream and syrup
  • taste the plums 
    • use ones that are ripe, but not overly ripen
    • they should be tart. sweet and could be enjoyed raw
  • reduce the plum syrup
    • this helps to thicken the plum juice enough to stand up to the ice cream and cake
  • line the pan you plan on making the icebox cake in
    • the loaf pan shape is iconic, but other pans can be used instead 
    • the plastic wrap helps the icebox cake come out cleanly and smoothly
    • less to clean up!
  • apply the final layer of whipped cream to the outer layer
    • looks more finished and cohesive 
  • wait to top the cake with fresh slices of stone fruit until right before serving 
  • store any uneaten pieces in the freezer
    • wrapped in plastic wrap
    • stored in a freezer proof container
plum ice cream icebox cake
plum ice cream icebox cake

other freezer cakes to love!

plum ice cream icebox cake

plum ice cream icebox cake

this plum ice cream icebox cake is made from layers of buttery pound cake, tart plum sauce, vanilla ice cream and fresh whipped cream.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 1 hr 30 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Freeze Time 6 hrs
Total Time 8 hrs
Course Celebrations, Dessert
Cuisine American

Equipment

  • stand mixer with paddle attachment or electric mixer with beaters
  • 9X13 pan
  • plastic wrap
  • medium sauce pan
  • mesh strainer
  • 8.5X4.5 loaf pan (or 9X5 loaf pan)

Ingredients
  

homemade pound cake

  • 1 c (120g) all purpose flour
  • 1 c (120g) cake flour sub 1:1 with all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 c (300g) granulated sugar
  • 3 tbsp lemon zest (about 2 medium lemons zested)
  • 1 tsp (5ml) vanilla extract
  • 1 c (227g) european style unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 (171g) large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/3 c (82g) sour cream, room temperature
  • 1/2 c (118ml) whole milk, room temperature

quick plum syrup

  • 4 c (450g) sliced plums or preferred stone fruit
  • 1/2 c (100g) granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp (30ml) lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp (30ml) water

filling and toppings

  • 3-4 c (450-600g) store bought vanilla ice cream, softened to spreadable consistency
  • 1 c (120g) whipped cream
  • 1 c (113g) sliced fruit, optional the same as used to make the syrup

Instructions
 

homemade pound cake

  • Preheat the oven to 305F. Line a 9X13 pan with parchment and lightly grease if needed. Set aside. 
    Sift the flours, baking powder and salt together. Set aside.
  • Zest the lemons into the sugar. Pour vanilla extract into the lemon sugar. Rub together to form a sand like consistency. Set aside. 
  • In a stand mixer with paddle, beat the butter on low for 1 min. Increase to medium -high for 4-6 min. until light and smooth. 
    Add the lemon sugar slowly, over 1-2 minutes. Scrape the bowl and mix butter and sugar on med-high for 1 min.
    Add eggs and sour cream one at a time, on low speed waiting about 20 seconds before adding the next. Scrape the bottom and sides of bowl. Beat 1 more minute on medium speed.
    By hand, alternate mixing in the dry ingredients and milk with the wet ingredients. Be careful not to overmix. Mix until just combined.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan. 
    Bake at 350F (177C) for 30-35 minutes or until the top is golden brown and springs back when center of the cake is gently pushed down. 
    Cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Cool completely to room temperature. Slice into 3 sections to fit  8.5 X 4.5 loaf pan. Wrap in plastic wrap and freeze for at least 2 hours. 

quick plum syrup

  • Place the plums, sugar, lemon juice and water in a medium skillet. Heat over medium heat to a boil, stirring frequently. Keep at a gentle boil for about 10 minutes or until the plums have broken down. 
  • Strain to remove the pulp from the juice. Return the juice to the same pan. Heat over medium heat for 4-5 minutes or until the juice reduces to a syrup. Cool completely. Chill for 1 hour in fridge. 

assembling the ice box cake

  • Line 8.5 X 4.5 loaf pan with plastic wrap, leaving 3 in. overhangs on all the sides.
  • Place one layer of frozen pound cake on the bottom. Spread 1 ½ – 2 c slightly thawed ice cream across the cake. Drizzle ½ of the quick plum syrup on top of the ice cream. 
    Repeat with another layer pound cake, ice cream and plum syrup. Finish the final layer with the last slice of pound cake. 
    Wrap the pan in plastic wrap. Chill in the freezer for at least 6 hours. 
  • To serve, unmold the icebox cake on a serving plate. Cover the sides and top with whipped cream for a more finished look. Place the plated icebox cake back in the freezer for 10-15 minutes to set the whipped cream.
  • Top with fresh fruit right before serving. Slice and serve.
    plum ice cream icebox cake

Notes

In place of homemade pound cake, you can use store bought. For this option: 
  • 2 (10 3/4-oz.) frozen pound cakes, thawed
  • trim the browned part of the crusts from pound cakes. cut each cake into 1/2-inch-thick slices to fit the pan as needed. 
Keyword freezer cakes
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