Make the best and authentic Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream at home with this easy recipe and video tutorial. This homemade ice cream is rich, flavorful, and incredibly delicious!
I’ve been in the U.S. for 15 years; however, I had never tasted Green Tea Ice Cream (Matcha Ice Cream) that is authentic until I found this recipe. I’m really excited to share this recipe with you today!
Häagen-Dazs® Green Tea ice cream is pretty close, but other brands of green tea ice cream that I tasted so far are way too creamy. The Japanese green tea ice cream is not as creamy. It is sweet, but it has a very strong matcha taste that is slightly bitter. It’s a perfect balance!
Watch How to Make Green Tea Ice Cream
Rich and creamy homemade Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream recipe.
Just 4 Ingredients to Make Green Tea Ice Cream
This Green Tea Ice Cream recipe requires just 4 simple ingredients to make!
- Matcha (Green tea powder)
- Half-and-Half (more about it later)
I’ll go over the first two ingredients in detail next.
Matcha (抹茶) – literally ‘powdered green tea’ – is a unique green tea made of top quality tea leaves that are covered before picking, then stone-ground into a delicate fine powder. For the past 50 years or so, matcha has been used in traditional Japanese sweets (wagashi), baked goods, ice cream, and drinks.
Unlike regular green tea that we drink, matcha is made from shade-grown tea leaves to prevent direct sunlight, which slows down growth and stimulates an increase in chlorophyll level, which turns the leaves into a darker shade of green. Only the finest tea buds are hand-picked, leaves de-veined and de-stemmed, and then stone-ground to the fine bright green powder. It could take one hour to grind 30 grams of matcha (Continue reading here).
The high-grade matcha is for drinking and the lower-grades are used for mostly culinary use. High-grade matcha tends to have a bright vibrant green color. Regardless of the grade, remember to use your matcha powder quickly after opening as it’ll oxidize and lose its flavor.
For this recipe, I used this “culinary quality” green tea powder from the Japanese brand Maeda-en. It is pretty good quality for $7 from the Japanese supermarket here. I know Even in Japan, matcha is considered a very expensive ingredient.
If you would like to learn more about matcha, please read this post.
Half-and-half is an American dairy product that is a blend of equal parts whole milk and light cream, and it has a 10-12% fat content.
If you live outside of the U.S., here is a substitute for 2 cups of Half-and-Half in the recipe.
- Option 1: Mix 1 cup (240 ml) whole milk + 1 cup (240 ml) light cream (18-30% fat).
- Option 2: Mix 1 ½ cup (360 ml) whole milk + ½ cup (120 ml) heavy cream (36-38% fat).
- Option 3: Mix 1 ⅓ cup (320 ml) low-fat milk + ⅔ cup (160 ml) heavy cream (36-38% fat).
When I tasted this ice cream, I was surprised how authentic the taste was and it brought me right back to Japan. If you miss authentic Japanese green tea ice cream, then this is it!
I highly recommend doubling the recipe! Enjoy!
Other Ice Cream Recipes:
Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream
- 2 cups half and half (Half-and-half is a blend of equal parts whole milk and light cream, and it has a 10-12% fat content; Substitute 1: Mix 1 cup (240 ml) whole milk + 1 cup (240 ml) light cream (18-30% fat). Sub 2: Mix 1 ½ cup (360 ml) whole milk + ½ cup (120 ml) heavy cream (36-38% fat). Sub 3: Mix 1 ⅓ cup (320 ml) low-fat milk + ⅔ cup (160 ml) heavy cream.)
- 3 Tbsp matcha (green tea powder)
- ½ cup sugar
- ⅛ tsp kosher/sea salt (I use Diamond Crystal; use half for table salt)
- Freeze the ice cream bowl for 24 hours. If you don't have an ice cream maker, please read this post. Gather all the ingredients.
- In a medium saucepan, whisk together the half and half, sugar and salt.
- Using a fine-mesh strainer, add matcha. Combine all together and cook the mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly. Why heating? Matcha and sugar will dissolve easily when the liquid is warm. When you see small bubbles around the edges of the mixture, remove the pot from the heat. When the sugar and matcha are combined well, remove from the heat. DO NOT let it boil.
- Transfer the mixture to a bowl sitting in an ice bath. When the mixture is cool, cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours.
- Once the mixture is thoroughly chilled, transfer to a pre-chilled ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacture's instructions (20-25 minutes). Transfer the soft ice cream into an airtight container and freeze for at least 4 hours before serving.
Editor’s Note: Step-by-step pictures have been updated in March 2014.