Home Made Ice Cream - Food Safety - Minnesota Dept. of Health

Home Made Ice Cream

Food safety tips for making and eating home made ice cream.


Homemade ice cream is a special summertime treat. However, for hundreds of consumers each year it can also become a threat as they suffer the effects of salmonellosis.

While commercially manufactured ice cream is typically made with pasteurized eggs or egg products, recipes for homemade ice cream often use raw eggs in the base mixture. Even when using pasteurized products, the FDA and the USDA advise consumers to start with a cooked base for optimal safety, especially if serving people at high risk for foodborne illness. Additionally, use only pasteurized milk and cream when making homemade ice cream.

Here are some suggestions for safe alternatives to using raw eggs in your homemade ice cream:

  • Find a recipe that is eggless. It’s easy and tastes just as good!
  • Use pasteurized shell eggs or pasteurized egg substitutes in recipes calling for raw eggs.
  • Use a recipe that contains a cooked custard base. The custard base must reach 160º F measured with a food thermometer, in order to kill the Salmonella Enteritidis. Resist the temptation to taste-test the mixture during preparation when the custard isn't fully cooked. After cooking, chill the custard thoroughly before freezing.
    From Colorado State University Extension Services.

More about home made ice cream:

  • Homemade Ice Cream - Safe and Nutritious: FDA
    Eating ice cream to beat the summer heat is one of America's favorite pastimes. And the rich, creamy flavor of homemade ice cream--whether it's made with an old hand-cranked ice cream maker or a modern electric one--is especially tasty. But the gastronomical delight of homemade ice cream can give some people gastric distress--or even worse--a serious illness.

  • Enjoying Homemade Ice Cream without the Risk of Salmonella Infection: FDA
    Every year homemade ice cream causes several outbreaks of Salmonella infection with up to several hundred victims at church picnics, family reunions, and other large gatherings. From 1996 to 2000 (the latest year for which surveillance was completed), 17 outbreaks resulting in more than 500 illnesses in the United States were traced to Salmonella bacteria in homemade ice cream, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The ingredient responsible for the outbreaks is raw or undercooked eggs.

Updated Monday, 03-Oct-2016 08:20:08 CDT