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Cactus Ice Cream Cones


Cactus Ice Cream Cones

A Note from Kelly: The time has finally arrived!!! I am SO excited to start introducing you to Studio DIY’s new DIY and recipe contributors this month!! After an overwhelming amount of support from you guys for us to bring new and fresh perspectives to our DIY and food content, we’ve found some pretty awesome people to share some pretty amazing projects here for you guys. First up, meet Andrea of Salty Canary. You’ve probably seen her infamous milkshake creations floating around the interwebs and now she’s here to share some delicious desserts with us too! Be sure to give her a warm welcome in the comments below!! I’m so excited to have her here. Take it away, Andrea!

Hi! Andrea here from Salty Canary! Today I’m sharing how to make cactus ice cream cones made with actual cactus flavored ice cream! Well, cactus AND grapefruit flavored ice cream, because cactus ice cream by itself wouldn’t taste very good since nopales (cactus paddles) taste similar to green beans.

I came up with this idea after seeing an ice cream cone filled with mint and chip ice cream and thought it looked like a potted cactus! So why not make an adorable cactus ice cream cone with actual cactus ice cream, some white sprinkles as the spines (or as I prefer to call them, prickles), and a candy melt flower on top?

Cactus Ice Cream ConesCactus Ice Cream Cones

I use an ice cream maker to make all of my homemade ice cream, and I really recommend one. The homemade ice cream it churns out is so creamy! And you can usually find nopales at the grocery store in the produce section. I sometimes see the full cactus paddles, but I recently lucked out and found them pre-diced with the spines already removed! Timesaver!

Cactus Ice Cream Cones
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Cactus Ice Cream Cones

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time35 mins


  • ½ cup nopales cleaned and diced
  • ½ cup fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 5 egg yolks
  • ¾ cup sugar divided
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp sriracha
  • optional: green food coloring
  • optional: 1-2 Tbsp tequila
  • ice cream cones
  • white jimmies sprinkles
  • handful pink candy melts
  • handful yellow candy melts


  • Boil the diced nopales until soft, then drain and rinse.
  • Blend the cooked nopales in a blender or food processor until smooth. Add a teaspoon of water if needed.
  • Combine the grapefruit juice, milk, heavy whipping cream, half the sugar, salt, and sriracha in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking intermittently.
  • While heating, combine the egg yolks and the other half of sugar in a bowl and whisk to combine.
  • When the milk mixture has come to a boil, pour ⅓ of it into the egg mixture and stir. Then pour another ⅓ and stir, and then the final ⅓ and stir.
  • Next, pour the entire mixture back into the saucepan and heat, stirring constantly for 2 minutes, but do NOT let it come to a boil.
  • Then, using a sieve, transfer the mixture to a clean bowl, allow it to come to room temperature, and then refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
  • Optional: Add 1-2 Tbsp tequila to mixture and stir before refrigerating.
  • Optional: Add 6-9 drops green food coloring if you could like ice cream to be greener in color.
  • After the mixture is chilled, follow the manufacturer's instructions on your ice cream maker to make it into ice cream.
  • Transfer ice cream to a freezer safe container and freeze overnight to further harden.
  • In sandwich bags, melt the pink and yellow candy melts according to the manufacturer’s instructions and draw little pink flowers with yellow centers onto parchment paper. Allow to harden, then peel off and set aside.
  • To make the cactus ice cream cones, top an ice cream cone with one scoop of ice cream, poke with a handful of white jimmies sprinkles, and top with a candy melt flower.
  • Enjoy!
Tried this recipe?Mention @studiodiy or tag #studiodiy!

Cactus Ice Cream Cones Cactus Ice Cream Cones Cactus Ice Cream Cones

Photos by Andrea Ament | Salty Canary

Feeling festive? Add some tequila and make your cactus ice cream a bit boozy! Just don’t add too much! 1-2 tablespoons should be fine, but much more than that and you risk the ice cream not freezing. Or, if you don’t want to bother making cactus flavored ice cream, simply turn vanilla ice cream green by using green food coloring!


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