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Berry Delicious Garden Milkshakes

July rings in National Ice Cream Month, with the third Sunday officially designated as National Ice Cream Day.

by John D. IvankoJuly 17, 2013

Use garden-fresh fruits, like berries and peaches, to flavor and garnish mid-summer milkshakes. Photo by Rachael Brugger (HobbyFarms.com)
Photo by Rachael Brugger
Use garden-fresh fruits, like berries and peaches, to flavor and garnish mid-summer milkshakes.

July rings in National Ice Cream Month, with the third Sunday officially designated as National Ice Cream Day. Celebrate by drawing inspiration from the garden and blending colorful, sweet and flavorful fruits for a creamy cold milkshake.

When you have summer fruit abundance and sweltering temperatures, a combination of garden fruits and ice cream can satisfy everyone’s craving for a cool treat. A recipe below provides suggestion proportions for ice cream and fruit, but feel free to experiment to your liking.

Here are a couple tips for milkshake making:

  • Take the vanilla ice cream out of the freezer about five minutes before you start blending to let it soften a bit. This is an important step to “temper” the ice cream. If it’s too hard when you start blending, you will add too much milk, and the end result will probably be runnier than you expected.
  • Just as you use quality fruit from the garden, a high-quality ice cream makes all the different in the final shake. Better ice cream (ideally homemade if you can) equals a better milkshake. Try to avoid “light” ice creams—they tend to be filled with air and will break down when blending. You’ll end up using more of the light ice cream for a milkshake and won’t save any calories.
  • This recipe uses vanilla ice cream but try other combinations. Using a berry-flavored ice cream such as strawberry will up the berry flavor richness.
  • Place your serving glass in the freezer for about 10 minutes before serving for extra chill to keep the shake from melting.
  • Be careful when adding the milk. Depending on how ripe your fruit is, the fruit’s water content might be higher, meaning you won’t need as much milk to achieve the desired consistency. Don’t add water to thin a milkshake; add more milk.


  • Whole or 2-percent milk offers the richest flavor, but you can use any milk, including dairy free milks, such as soy or rice milk.
  • If you don’t own a blender, an immersion blender (the kind you use to purée soups) works well, too.
  • Have fun with the garnishes! Add a sprinkle of berries or a lemon balm leaf for a dash of color, or add a dollop of whipped cream and sprinkles for a sundae effect.
  • The recipe below is for one milkshake, but you can easily multiply for more people. You can mix two shakes at a time in a standard blender.
  • Have leftovers? While we realize that’s unlikely, you can pour any leftover milkshake into a freezer-pop mold and freeze for a different frozen treat.

Recipe: Garden-fresh Milkshake

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Yield: 1 serving


  • 1/2 tsp. almond extract
  • 1 cup vanilla ice cream
  • 1 cup fresh berries such as raspberries, blueberries, mulberries or strawberries or other soft fruits such as peaches
  • 1/3 cup cold milk
  • additional berries for garnish

Place vanilla ice cream, almond extract and berries in blender.Gently pulse until blended. Slowly add milk as needed to achieve desired thickness and gently pulse again until blended. Garnish with additional berries or a lemon balm leaf

Savoring the good life,

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