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Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream

4.8 stars, average of 152 ratings

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This is now known as “the ice cream that nearly broke me” in my family.

I love ice cream but it’s got to be creamy and smooth. I find that low carb ice creams can easily become icy or just not quite right as far as the texture goes. I know that using egg yolks helps with the creaminess and stability and I also know that vegetable glycerine will do wonders in stopping that iciness.

But I did not know that xylitol will result in a much softer ice cream, so the first batch that I made had a lot more xylitol in it. Not only was it waaaay too sweet, but it also wouldn’t freeze. No matter what I tried, I could not get it past the extremely soft serve stage. I made edible anti-freeze! I will say that the texture was divinely smooth though.

So, I made and re-made batches until I found the perfect balance of these ingredients to create a luscious, creamy ice cream. I was so sick of the sight of ice cream by the end of it! But it was worth every second. Enjoy!

Recipe Tips

For this recipe you'll need to use an ice cream maker. For no-churn options, check out these keto recipes instead.

As for the sweeteners used in this recipe, xylitol improves the texture and add softness but you can use other low-carb sweeteners too: erythritol, Swerve, allulose, stevia or monk fruit based sweeteners. To prevent any gritty texture, process in a coffee grinder or a blender to "powder".

Now there are a couple of reasons you might not want to use xylitol at all. First, it's  toxic to dogs and other animals. Also, excessive use of xylitol  can cause GI issues. The issue with that is that some people get GI issues with as little as 1 tablespoon of xylitol.

If that's your case, use allulose instead. Allulose is a healthy low-carb sweetener that's generally well tolerated, and will work just as well as xylitol when it comes to keeping your ice cream soft.

Hands-on Overall

Serving size large scoop, 113 g/ 4 oz

Allergy information for Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream

✔  Gluten free
✔  Nightshade free
✔  Pork free
✔  Avocado free
✔  Coconut free
✔  Fish free
✔  Shellfish free
✔  Beef free

Nutritional values (per serving, large scoop, 113 g/ 4 oz)

Net carbs5.9 grams
Protein3.7 grams
Fat39.6 grams
Calories398 kcal
Calories from carbs 6%, protein 4%, fat 90%
Total carbs7.5 gramsFiber1.6 gramsSugars5.5 gramsSaturated fat18 gramsSodium36 mg(2% RDA)Magnesium27 mg(7% RDA)Potassium154 mg(8% EMR)

Ingredients (makes 10 servings)


  1. Preheat oven to 175 °C/ 350 °F (fan assisted), or 195 °C/ 380 °F (conventional). Melt 20 grams (0.7 oz) of the butter and toss through the pecans until coated. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream
  2. Spread out in an even layer on an oven tray and bake until browned, for about 10 minutes. Keep an eye on them as they can burn very easily. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream
  3. Place cream, almond milk, vanilla, glycerine and Xylitol (or use Allulose) into a pan and heat over gentle heat until Xylitol has dissolved. Make sure to mix it constantly to prevent any xylitol from sticking to the bottom.
  4. Melt the remaining 60 grams (2.1 oz) of butter in a pan and keep heating it until it reaches a deep golden brown colour. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream Again, keep an eye on it so that it doesn’t burn. Add the butter to the cream mixture and whisk well. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream
  5. Place the egg yolks in a mixing bowl and beat well. Add one third of the cream mixture to the egg yolks to temper the yolks, beating well. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream
  6. Slowly add the egg yolk mixture in to the cream, beating the whole time, and place back over medium heat. Cook slowly until the mixture thickens. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream
  7. Pour into a bowl and set aside to cool. Place cling wrap over the surface of the custard to avoid a skin forming and chill in the refrigerator until cold, preferably overnight. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream
  8. Place mixture into your ice cream maker and mix until soft serve consistency is achieved. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream
  9. Fold the pecans through the mix, retaining a handful for garnish. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream
  10. Spoon the ice cream into a container, sprinkle with remaining pecans and freeze until firm, usually only a couple of hours. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream Store, in a container, in the freezer for up to a month. Keto Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream

Ingredient nutritional breakdown (per serving, large scoop, 113 g/ 4 oz)

Net carbsProteinFatCalories
Cream, heavy whipping, pouring, full-fat (30-40% fat)
1.3 g1 g19.3 g186 kcal
Almond milk natural (unsweetened)
0.1 g0.1 g0.3 g4 kcal
Butter, unsalted, grass-fed
0 g0.1 g6.5 g57 kcal
Pecans, nuts
0.7 g1.5 g11.8 g113 kcal
Vanilla extract, sugar-free, alcohol-based
0 g0 g0 g2 kcal
Egg yolk, fresh
0.2 g1.1 g1.8 g22 kcal
Vegetable glycerin
0.5 g0 g0 g2 kcal
Xylitol (natural low-carb sweetener)
3 g0 g0 g12 kcal
Total per serving, large scoop, 113 g/ 4 oz
5.9 g3.7 g39.6 g398 kcal

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Naomi Sherman
Creator of

Naomi Sherman

Naomi is the force behind Naomi Sherman, Food Creative. She is passionate about recipe development, food photography and styling.

An accomplished home cook who was diagnosed with an auto-immune disease eight years ago, Naomi started to explore the connection between healthy, whole food and her symptoms, and a new love was born.

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Comments (25)

This ice cream sounds good, but is there an alternative to using an ice cream maker?

Hi Becky, you could try manual churning where the ice cream should be stirred every 30-40 minutes until frozen (place in the freezer and stir every 30-40 minutes to smoothen any ice crystals).

FIVE STARS!!!!! I just finished making the base and had to force myself to stop sampling it! The brown butter really adds to the flavor. I used Monkfruit sweetner. Can't wait to get it  cool enough for my machine. THANKS!!!

Thank you Linda, I'm glad you enjoyed!

Hi Martina I love your blog it’s a regular go to resource for me when looking for new Keto recipes. Many thanks to Naomi for this recipe. I’m new to making Keto ice cream and this is the first one i’ve Made, where I’ve made the custard on the stove. This was simply spectacular!! It tastes as good as regular sugar filled ice cream. I used the vegetable glycerin and a shot of vodka. The texture is as close to real ice cream as I think you could get without sugar. I give it five stars and will be pinning this on Pinterest.

Thank you for your lovely feedback, Ken! Naomi will be pleased

Hi Naomi!
Thanks for the delicious ice cream. I wonder what the butter for? Can I just remove it?
Please share more ice cream recipes, especially with coconut milk based one.

Hi Venus, this recipe is based on the "browned butter" pecan ice cream so it is an essential ingredient. It's mainly used for flavour. I hope this helps! For more ice cream recipes: Ice Creams

I made this exactly like recipe listed. It was delicious!! But, it seemed grainy. Did I need to cook the base with the Xylitol longer, maybe?

Hi Julie, I think it has not dissolved properly which may happen with butter. It happened to me when I was making keto chocolate and the sweetener didn't dissolve in the cacao butter. In that case it's better if you use "powdered" Xylitol (or other powdered sweetener such as Erythritol or Swerve). If you need a quick fix, I think it's better to place it in a blender as it is. If you cook it for longer, the xylitol may solidify on the bottom of the saucepan (again, speaking from experience - that is why xylitol is great for making candy lollies!). I hope this helps!

Hi, I forgot to get almond milk and I live to far out to go back and I really want to make this today, so my question is can I use all whipping cream for both whipping cream and almond milk?

Hi Nancy, I'm sorry for the delayed response - it usually takes a few days to approve/reply to all comments. If you use cream, it will be more creamy and will contain more fat. What I do when I don't have almond milk is that I mix about 1/4-1/3 cup of heavy whipping cream or coconut milk with 3/4 cup of water. I hope this helps!

Just made this and it is yummy. It is the only pecan icecream recipe I have managed to make to work. Not sure if it is because I used cream or the xylitol instead of milk and stevia.. Anyway, it seems that I can substitute the pecans for any other nuts for different flavors, but was wondering can I use the recipe without the nuts as basic vanilla ice cream and add other toppings to it? Maybe some cocoa or melted chocolate or fruits? Has anyone tried that and did it work? Any tips on how to turn that into strawberry or raspberry or even salted caramel will be appreciated?

I just made this with the exact measurements and exact ingredients. It turned out delicious! It was quite a few steps, and I was afraid it was not going to turn out . My mixture never seemed to get to custard consistency. But I did refrigerate it over night and it was ready to eat after 10 minutes in ice cream maker. It was a bit grainy. But, I think that may have been from not melting the xylitol all the way. Great recipe!! And, it was the first time using my new ice cream maker! Perfect!

I know what it´s like to create a recipe you have to make over and over until it reaches perfection, it´s fun but fustrating, but you already did all the work here and this pecan ice cream looks amazing, thank you for the recipe and all your efforts 😊

Looks delicious!  But I’m not sure about the ingredients. The ingredient list calls for xylitol. But, the directions call for erythritol.  Which one is correct?

Thank you for spotting that Debbie! You can use either - both will work. Xylitol will result is softer/less icy ice cream.

I am all excited about this recipe as I love ice cream and even have an ice cream maker and will definitely try this. My question: Shouldn't the ice cream be ready after using the ice cream maker? Why do I need to freeze the mixture again? And another question: Is it possible to prepare non-dairy?
Thank you for all your great work.

I suppose you can have it straight from the ice cream maker but it will be quite soft. The subsequent freezing is recommended as it will help the ice cream set. I think you can use coconut cream instead of dairy cream but I would not substitute the butter, although you could use ghee (clarified butter) but the flavour wouldn't be the same with milk solids removed.

Do you really need to use 1 tsp vegetable glycerine? Can something else be substituted or can it be left out?  

You can leave it out, or instead you can use 1 tbsp MCT oil or 1 tbsp vodka - that will also help with the iciness.

Sorry, but ALL recipes using Xylitol really need to also place a warning that it is FATAL to Dogs.  hurts cats too.  Many people STILL do not know this  thanks

Thank you Jan, that is correct! Xylitol can indeed be fatal to dogs:

Is an ice cream maker required?

Yes, it's better to use an ice cram maker as it will make the ice cream smooth.