The first sip of a thick, yummy milkshake is always completely satisfying. But the next time you’re craving this sweet dessert, you don’t necessarily have to take a trip to the drive-through or your favorite restaurant. If you want to learn how to make a homemade milkshake, all you really need is your favorite ice cream, a splash of milk, and a blender to help make it thick and creamy. Or, if you’re running low on ice cream, you can also learn how to make a milkshake without ice cream (it just takes a couple of extra ingredients). Choose your flavor, whether it’s classic vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, or something a little more out-of-the-box like cookie dough or mint chip, grab a straw, and get started!
How to Make a Milkshake with Ice Cream
If you’re planning to use ice cream as the base for your milkshake, the steps couldn’t be simpler. Just combine ice cream with milk in a blender (the less milk you add, the thicker the shake will be), and blend until smooth. For a one-serving milkshake, plan to use about one cup of ice cream with a quarter cup of milk. If you want the shake to be a little easier to sip through a straw, adding extra milk will help thin it out. You can also make the shake a little more rich by substituting milk for something like half-and-half. You can also choose dairy milk and ice cream alternatives to make a vegan or dairy-free milkshake.
Choose whatever flavor of ice cream you want the shake to be. If you want a stronger flavor, you can also add extra ingredients. For example, if you want to know how to make a strawberry milkshake with a lot of fruity flavor, try adding fresh strawberries to the blender alongside your milk and ice cream. Or, for how to make a chocolate milkshake richer, blend in a squeeze of chocolate syrup. Other ideas include cookie dough bites, chopped candies, chopped fruit, hot fudge, sweet cereal, cheesecake bites, and crushed cookies.
If you don’t have a blender to use, you can also mix up the ingredients using an immersion blender. Or, combine in a bowl and whisk or stir until smooth (if you choose to stir, it’ll help to let the ice cream soften at room temperature for about 10 minutes before you start mixing).
How to Make a Milkshake Without Ice Cream
No ice cream? Don’t worry! You can still blend up a mouthwatering milkshake with just a few pantry ingredients. To help thicken the shake and ensure it’s good and cold, start by adding ice cubes to a blender. Top with a splash of milk, and add a couple of spoonfuls of sugar to sweeten it. Finally, add a small amount of vanilla extract. If you’re just wondering how to make a vanilla milkshake, that’s all you’ll need–just blend until it reaches the consistency you like. But you can also dress up this basic no-ice cream recipe with other add-ins. Add a spoonful of cocoa powder to make it a chocolate milkshake, or turn it into a refreshing mint shake with a little mint extract.
How to Dress Up a Basic Milkshake Recipe
It’s super easy to make a simple homemade milkshake, but there are also tons of ways you can dress it up into something a little more special. Before pouring your milkshake into a glass, try drizzling syrup around the inside of the glass. Use chocolate or strawberry syrup or caramel sauce to give your shake a little extra sweetness and flavor.
You can also add extra goodies to the rim of the glass. For a summertime s’mores milkshake, use a knife to smear marshmallow fluff around the rim of the glass. Then, roll through crushed graham crackers before pouring in the shake. Or, to add extra color to the glass, dip the rim in chocolate syrup, then roll through colorful sprinkles. You could also try crushed cookies, chopped nuts, or your favorite cereal.
Finally, toppers can also push your shake to the next level. A generous dollop of whipped cream is almost a given, but you can also garnish the shake with almost anything. Think fruit slices, cookies, a drizzle of chocolate sauce, candies, chocolate chips, or sprinkles. If you like a combination of sweet and salty, even something a little unusual like pretzels or crushed potato chips can make a tasty, one-of-a-kind shake. If you have a favorite restaurant milkshake, try using that as inspiration, or just combine the flavors you’re craving—the possibilities are endless!