DIY ice cream flavours

Ice cream has to be one of the most beloved desserts, not only for its taste, but for its ability to pair with so many other flavours. The same can be said for Ice cream concentrates, but they also have a few extra tricks up their sleeve.

Introduction to Ice Cream

The beauty of Ice cream is far more than its usefulness as a general flavour. It can be used to add some extra body or richness, or to help tone down harsher or bolder mixes. It works particularly well alongside various flavours such as creams and custards.  

Most Ice cream concentrates are vanilla based, or vanilla bean (VBIC), frankly, I’ve never tried anything else. Besides, they’re all I would ever use. I don’t regard ice cream as a stand-alone vape flavour, as it really needs additional support, blending with compatible and or contrasting flavour profiles. It’s also viable, at least in part, as an ingredient in a sweetener base.

Ice Cream Uses

The Basics

VBIC (Vanilla Bean Ice Cream) can really shine when blending supporting dairy flavours such as custards, puddings, creams or vanillas. Additional richness may not be necessary or desired, but it’s well worth exploring, and particularly worthwhile if you’re wanting to make an ice cream or dessert type base.

The basic use of ice cream is often to compliment or support a dessert, bakery, fruit or beverage mix. However, I often use VBIC as an additive or a subtle layer to add contrast alongside bolder or earthier profiles, such as tobaccos and or coffee vapes. 

From time to time I enjoy a blend of VBIC with a plain or smoked butterscotch or caramel. This too can be utilised as a sweetener, or at least part of a sweetener base. Try around 4-6% of VBIC and 3% of Caramel or butterscotch. Best if you steep for around 2-3 weeks.

Fruits and Ice Cream

Simplicity

Fruits are possibly the easiest of recipes and blend very well with ice cream. Try around 4% of vanilla ice cream, and start with 1-2 % of fruits, such as Mango, pineapple, pear, apple, passionfruit or dark berries like blackberry. 

Fruits can add some juiciness and sweetness to ice creams and make really nice simple recipes. For some additional richness try adding up to 1% of cream. Flavorah Cream, FlavourArts Fresh Cream or Vienna work nicely.

Coconut can blend really nicely, or a mixture of various nuts. I recommend you try Flavorah Sweet Coconut, FlavourArt Mixed Nuts and Flavor West Hazelnut; this concentrate adds a lovely creamy element too.

Fruits & Ice Cream

Simplicity

Fruits are possibly the easiest of recipes and blend very well with ice cream. Try around 4% of vanilla ice cream, and start with 1-2 % of fruits, such as Mango, pineapple, pear, apple, passionfruit or dark berries like blackberry. 

Fruits can add some juiciness and sweetness to ice creams and make really nice simple recipes. For some additional richness try adding up to 1% of cream. Flavorah Cream, FlavourArts Fresh Cream or Vienna work nicely.

Coconut can blend really nicely, or a mixture of various nuts. I recommend you try Flavorah Sweet Coconut, FlavourArt Mixed Nuts and Flavor West Hazelnut; this concentrate adds a lovely creamy element too.

Flavours of the earth

Contrats - Mellowing

I generally enjoy more earthy or bolder flavours such as tobaccos, coffees and various fusions, often with low percentages of rum or bourbons.  BTW, Flavorah’s Bourbon adds a nice contrast to VBIC with oak and smokey elements.

Therefore, if I use ice cream, it’s primarily to add or elevate any sweetness, or as an additive or subtle enhancer per se. Less is often more, especially when you’re looking to add nuance, as opposed to a full layered flavour. 

Experiment by adding 1-2% only of VBIC (perhaps TFA or Capellas) to an existing bolder profile for some subtlety.

Flavours of the Earth

Contrast - Mellowing

I generally enjoy more earthy or bolder flavours such as tobaccos, coffees and various fusions, often with low percentages of rum or bourbons.  BTW, Flavorah’s Bourbon adds a nice contrast to VBIC with oak and smokey elements.

Therefore, if I use ice cream, it’s primarily to add or elevate any sweetness, or as an additive or subtle enhancer per se. Less is often more, especially when you’re looking to add nuance, as opposed to a full layered flavour. 

Experiment by adding 1-2% only of VBIC (perhaps TFA or Capellas) to an existing bolder profile for some subtlety.

Pairing Suggestions

Explore

When it comes to ice creams, as with all concentrates, one’s options or opinions for pairing are limitless. However, below are some fairly common, and a few uncommon pairing ideas that you may wish to explore. Some of my favourite pairings for Vanilla Ice Cream are – 

Flavorah – Cream, Vanilla Bean, Blueberry Muffin, Sweet Coconut, Apple Filling, Apple Cider, Guanabana, Smoked Butterscotch, Bourbon, Vanilla Custard, Tobaccos.
FlavourArt – Butterscotch, Caramel, Jamaican Rum (special), Marshmallow, Meringue, Marzipan, Oba Oba, Dark Bean, UP.
Juice Factory – Maple Syrup, Passionfruit Mix, Pineapple, Mango, Espresso.
TFA – TPA – Butter, Vanilla Custard 1 & 2, Kentucky Bourbon, Kahlua and Cream, Pear. 
Medicine Flower – Banana, Caramel, Dark Chocolate.
Flavor West – Butterscotch Ripple, Butter Rum, Hazelnut.
LorAnn – Banana Cream Clear, Butter Rum.
Purilum – Marshmallow, Caramel Coffee With Sweet Milk.
Vape Train – Bourbon, Light Rum, Coffee Liqueur, English Toffee, Honeycomb, Toffee Ice Cream.

Dairy

Other Ice Creams
Creams
Milk
Butter
Cheese
Cheesecake

Bakery

Cakes
Cake Batter
Cookies
Cookie Dough
Doughnuts
Graham Cracker

Dessert

Custard
Meringue
Marzipan
Chocolate
Caramel
Butterscotch

Sugars - Sweet

Maple Syrup
Honey
Molasses
Marshmallow
Candies -Sweets
Bubble Gum

Floral - Plant

Vanilla
Hibiscus
lavender
Elderflower
Rose
Eucalyptus
Mint

Alcohol

Bourbon
Whiskey
Brandy
Amaretto
Rum
Irish Cream
Eggnog

Fruits

Acai
Banana
Passionfruit
Coconut – Nuts
Dragon Fruit
Strawberry – Berries
Pink Guava

Other

Tobacco
Coffee
Spice
Herbs
Smokey
Menthol
Additives

Dairy

Dessert

Additional Ice Creams (VBIC)
Creams
Milk
Butter
Cheese
Cheesecake

Custard
Meringue
Marzipan
Chocolate
Caramel
Butterscotch

Bakery

Sugars-Sweet

Cakes
Cake Batter
Cookies
Cookie Dough
Doughnuts
Graham Cracker

Maple Syrup
Honey
Molasses
Marshmallow
Candies -Sweets
Bubble Gum

Recommended Concentrates

Favourites

Flavor West Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
A creamy, fairly smooth and sweet vanilla, although relatively light. I get very little butter or eggy notes and the cream aspect is somewhat soft. There’s no pepper or spice here, just a light blend of vanilla and cream. My favourite VBIC to use for a base. 
Capella Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
A semi-sweet, pepper-free vanilla with a mid-level density to the mouthfeel. The buttery element is light as are the eggy notes. A well respected representation. 
TFA Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
Many consider this the king of ice creams, and whilst it’s a great flavour, it’s always subjective. A cross between TFA vanilla custard and TFA vanilla swirl. There’s a peppery element that some dislike but it’s a very good ice cream. More on the custard side with vanilla bean notes.
Liquid Barn Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
A rich, bright, buttery VBIC with emphasis on the vanilla notes. At higher percentages it gets a tad dry, yet, offers a slight maltol note. This is a superb VBIC and among my favourite when mixing with lighter complimentary flavours – such as fruits and light bakery’s.
TFA Vanilla Bean Gelato
A nice rich semi-sweet, creamy, eggy vanilla, with a nice balance of buttery notes. Whilst there are custard notes included (butyric acid) it’s nothing like the intensity of TFA’s VBIC.
Hangsen French Vanilla Bean Ice cream
A very rich, creamy, buttery ice cream with a distinct off note, sort of pungent and slightly sour. This is essentially more a vanilla cream and works best as an additive. I need more time to explore its potential, but I feel this is an important addition to the ice cream-cream family.

Tips for testing flavours

Thoughts & Tips on using Ice Cream

Ice cream is cold, so unless you’re wanting to use it without the chill, perhaps to add body or flavour only, you’ll need to add FA’s Polar Blast, TFA’s Koolada, or similar.

There are many ways to experiment with ice cream – Making a base, adding additional richness, blending it with complementary flavours, or utilising contrasting flavours such as tobacco or coffees. For something along the lines of a base or a customised ice cream, look at blending in some additional flavours such as creams, milk, butter, vanilla, vanillin, custard, pudding and even marshmallow- 

  • Mix up some 10 ml bottles of one or more ice creams, adding in one or two of each of these elements at a time. Steep and re test.
  • Also, blending two or more ice creams can prove worthwhile if wanting to use TFA’s and mask some of the peppery elements.

I really like coconut with VBIC (start at 0.5 to 1% for FLV Sweet Coconut and FA Coconut) and often add around 0.5 to 1.5% of FA Jamaican rum or 0.5% of FLV Bourbon and 1 to 1.5% of TFA Kentucky Rum.

  • Ice creams can really benefit from a 2 week steep or more
  • Marzipan, one of FA’s best sweeteners, pairs nicely with ice creams
  • Lemon and lime blend well in low percentages. Start at around 0.25 % 
  • Ice creams can help tone down harsher or bolder flavours. Try 0.5 – 1 %
  • Flavorah’s smoked butterscotch is an excellent pairing, and one of my favourites
  • Flavorah’s caramel is an excellent alternative to brown sugar
  • Rums and Bourbons are a must try with VBIC
  • Blackberry, blueberry and other darker fruits are excellent with ice cream
  • Molinberry Eucalyptus and Mint is a great alternative to menthol
  • Vape Train Toffee Ice Cream is a must try, straight or blending
  • Also look at our posts on cream and vanilla flavours.

How I Test Flavours

Flavours are mixed in a 50-50 blend of PG & VG. Zero nicotine and generally steeped for 2 weeks. Three vape devices are used including an RDA.

How I Test Flavours

Flavours are mixed in a 50-50 blend of PG & VG. Zero nicotine and generally steeped for 2 weeks. Three vape devices are used including an RDA.

Testing flavours with e-cig
RDA for testing flavours

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Chloe

    Hey Charles, just taking some time to check out your other posts and I’m enjoying them. Just a heads up – The Steamery (AU) has HS French Vanilla Ice Cream in stock today I noticed – I literally spent near 6 months chasing this concentrate down as it was out of stock everywhere, and thanks to my love for ice cream I ended up paying for postage from North America. I say get it while they’ve got it because it’ll go! It’s a nice additive for ice-creams, not the be-all end-all as I’d hoped but enjoyable, it may need longer steeping.. I have the trinity vanilla ice cream by eyemakepizza currently a week into steeping 🙂

  2. Charles Yates

    Hi again,

    Funny you should mention the Hangsen concentrates, just got mine in from The Steamery last week. I bought the Ice Cream, French Vanilla Ice Cream and Cream. Currently steep all. Will report on my thoughts in about a month. Cheers, will come visit the store again soon.
    Take Care,
    Charles

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