Homemade Pumpkin Frozen Yogurt


He who distinguishes the true savor of his food can never be a glutton;

he who does not cannot be otherwise.

-Henry David Thoreau

I’ve pretty much overcome my love of sweets.

Except for a few glorious weeks of the year, when Cold Stone Creamery features pumpkin ice cream.

I like to order it with graham cracker and caramel mix-in. Yuuuuummmmmm.

My mission: to come up with a slightly healthier version that was still rich and creamy, that I could indulge in all year round.


pumpkin frozen yogurt



1 1/2 cups plain kefir
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons Pumpkin Torani syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla (I use Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Extract which I buy at Williams-Sonoma; I’ve found a good vanilla makes a huge difference in the richness of taste.)

DIY frozen yogurt



Mix together ingredients.

Pour into ice cream maker.

Run through ice cream maker until thick and creamy.

Top with warm caramel and crumbled graham cracker (I tried adding caramel “ribbons” at the end of the churning, that didn’t work out as well as I’d hoped; no dramatic striping and made it way sweeter than I like. Don’t bother.)

That’s it! Sooooo easy!

Kefir-only recipe:

I tried this again with just kefir, no heavy cream (which I originally used to get that creamy quality). That ingredient list looked like this:

1 1/2 cups plain kefir
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons Pumpkin Torani syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

This is more like fast-food soft serve (more icy) but I liked it better, as it was less sweet. It made two generous servings: one for dessert tonight, and one I froze to be mixed with vanilla protein powder tomorrow for a protein packed milkshake!

Making your own traditional ice cream at home is a bit of a pain— you have to cook the base and then freeze it overnight (although, generally speaking, the results are well worth it). I love that these kefir concoctions can be thrown together on a whim; all I have to do is wash out the bowl and stick back in the freezer for the next time the urge for something cold and sweet hits me :)

Any other DIY ice creamers out there?
Do you find it worth the trouble?





Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *