Cheat’s Mango Ice Cream

I grew up in a house where vanilla ice-cream was freely available – we had it for dessert almost every single day, with my mom’s homemade chocolate sauce. It was great, but I got so used to ice-cream that I never really thought of it as something special.Until I got older and discovered proper Italian ice-cream from artisan parlours like Lecce Il Gelato and Cold Gold Ice Cream.Today I’ve turned into a complete ice-cream snob. I only eat the good stuff. Okay, I still appreciate the charm of a cheap, old-fashioned soft serve at the beach on a hot summer’s day, but I’ll drive the extra mile to get the “extra dark chocolate” flavour from Lecce Il Gelato. Yum.

That said, I haven’t really tried my hand at making ice-cream before, seeing that it’s an art form in its own right.

I also don’t have the right tools, because ice-cream churners can be quite expensive. So I couldn’t help but feel a bit confused when I saw Donna Hay make her “cheat’s ice-cream” on television as part of her “Fast, Fresh, Simple” series. She simply used frozen fruit and cream, and whipped up a perfectly textured soft serve from scratch in a minute. I simply had to try it. I used freshly frozen mango pieces and fresh cream, and sweetened it with a bit of extra caster sugar. It worked like a dream, and it couldn’t be easier.All you need is a basic food processor and a normal freezer (deep freeze) – no churning, no time, no tricks. This is my version of cheat’s mango ice-cream, based on Donna’s recipe.Donna also used fresh banana in her recipe, but I like the basic mango flavour all on its own. After all, the mango is the king of the fruit family, in my books.


  • 400 g mango flesh, sliced and completely frozen
  • 250 ml fresh cream
  • 50 g castor sugar (optional, adjust to taste)


  • Step 1

    In the bowl of a food processor, add the frozen fruit, cream and sugar. Process until smooth – it takes about 30 seconds to 1 minute. The texture should be a smooth “soft serve” consistency, and can be eaten straight away. But if you prefer a harder ice-cream, pour ice-cream into a plastic container and freeze for another 3-4 hours or overnight.