When I was younger, I was a Chi-Chi’s fanatic. You know, back when they had actual restaurants where they sung to you on your birthday, making you wear that ridiculous sombrero. I’ve made many a memory there. I even went there for a family lunch after I graduated from college. Without fail, there was one thing I always craved. That Mexican fried ice cream. But Chi-Chi’s is no more and now I have Celiac Disease. Therefore I set out to create this recipe for Mexican Unfried ice cream balls.
I’m not a huge fan of frying. It always uses more oil than I want, and I tend to make my house all smoky. In addition, I don’t quite understand how one can “fry” ice cream without making it melt. While there may be a way, for sure I’d be the one to make a terrible mess of it. So I chose to be creative and use Cinnamon Chex to create these little Mexican unfried ice cream balls. It works so well anyone can do it!
I think the most important ingredient in making this Mexican unfried ice cream recipe is patience. After scooping out the ice cream, they need to freeze for a while. Then, once you coat them, they should freeze again for a while. You’ll want to eat this immediately, but trust me, allowing them to harden is worth the wait. In the meantime, you can make this batch of SUPER easy homemade chocolate syrup. Much better than store purchased and dairy-free!
Most Mexican unfried ice cream recipes call for making large, regular scoops. I chose to use my 1 oz. Pampered Chef scoop to make miniature balls. I used So Delicious Vanilla ice cream, so this can be easily made dairy-free. Plus. this is the end of March Madness (why does it always end in April??) and I think they look like little basketballs. If you choose not to coat them in chocolate syrup, they’d make an excellent dessert finger food. Just eat them fast, because it would be a pity it they melted and went to waste!
Gluten-Free Mexican Unfried Ice Cream
1 pint ice cream (Use So Delicious if you’re dairy-free!)
2 cups Cinnamon Rice Chex, crushed
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp sugar
1. Scoop ice cream into spheres and place on parchment-lined cookie sheet. Once all scoops have been made, place cookie sheet in freezer for 2-3 hours or overnight.
2. In 3 cup mini food processor, pulverize cereal into crumbs. Add cinnamon and sugar. Process again to mix spices throughout.
3. Remove ice cream from freezer and allow to soften, approximately 4-5 minutes. Use your hands to pack cinnamon crumb mixture onto ice cream balls. Once all balls are coated, return to freezer to harden until ready to serve.
4. When ready to serve, remove from freezer. Top with chocolate syrup and a dab of whipped cream.
Homemade Dairy-Free Chocolate Syrup
1/4 c. Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa
1/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. water
1/4 tsp. vanilla
Pinch of salt
1. In a medium saucepan, combine cocoa, water and sugar. Gently stir over medium heat until some of the water cooks off and the syrup begins to thicken.
2. Remove from heat, add vanilla and pinch of salt. Sauce will thicken as it cools.