Basil & Mascarpone Ice Cream with Pinot Noir Strawberry Swirl

Very excited to bring you today’s post,which was sponsored by Vitamix and TheFeedFeed.

What did Walt Whitman say? “We were together, I forget the rest”. Do you think he was talking about the Vitamix A3500 Ascent Series?

Sleek, stylish, effortlessly cool. I’d be content just basking in the glow of its now permanent residence on my kitchen counter. The A3500 Ascent Series has five program settings (Smoothies, Hot Soups, Dips and Spreads, Frozen Desserts, and Self Cleaning). It’s also tech savvy with built-in wireless connectivity, meaning he will evolve with all the latest innovations in years to come. {See more product info below.}

Mind you, this is my first Vitamix ever. So you’ll have to excuse all my gushing. The first thing I made was a smoothie. In less than a minute I had blended an assortment of fruits (fresh and frozen) and tough, fibrous ginger into a silky vibrant dream. Insert audible gasp here. As I often do when something exciting happens in the kitchen, I gave my mom a call to rave about my new kitchen toy! She is after all the person who instilled in me the passion and appreciation for food.

Any talent I now possess can be traced back to my culinary origin story; five-year-old Christine propped up on a chair, stove-side, helping her cook dinner in our kitchen. To this day I’m still awestruck by her ability to whip up something out of nothing. I distinctly recall nights as a child staring into what seemed to be a barren fridge.  My siblings and I would lament the age-old childhood cry “there’s nothing to eat!” and mere minutes later an aromatic meal would be simmering away on the stove. I’m fairly certain we thought she was magic.

With Mother’s Day just around the corner I’ve been brainstorming recipes I might make for her to celebrate that magic. My brother, sister, and I like to join forces each year and create her a special meal to pay homage to one of the most wonderful women in existence. And that’s not daughterly bias! In our family she’s everyone’s favorite aunt and all my friends adore her long before they meet her in person.

I was inspired to make this rich and delicious ice cream by two things; a love of red wine I share with my mother and a French cookbook. I came across a recipe for strawberries soaked in sugar and wine. That’s it. A dessert recipe that is as decadent as it is simple. I began to wonder how I could soften the flavor of the wine a bit and began toying with the idea of a red wine reduction sauce laden with berries.

Syrupy, tart, with a depth of flavor from a pinot my mother loves, sweetened with some honey perhaps? I decided to pair it with some basil and mascarpone ice cream. I love using herbs in desserts and that bit of vibrancy freshened and brightened what is a decidedly rich indulgent dish. Making Ice cream in your Vitamix is easy. Simply freeze some of your liquid ingredients ahead of time in a few ice cubes trays. The general rule of thumb is ¼ cup liquid to 1 cup of frozen ingredients. I froze my ingredients and made the sauce the night before. This way I was ready to go the following day.

I made the ice cream separately first—using the Dessert Program. Then I layered it in a bread pan and swirled the red wine strawberry sauce throughout. After a couple hours in the freezer it was ready to enjoy. A pale, earthy green and creamy confection laced with deeply hued ribbons of pinot noir strawberry sauce. I served each scoop with more wine sauce and waffle cone cookies. I can’t wait to share this recipe with my mom!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there or any magical woman in your life who supports and inspires you!

This post was sponsored by Vitamix and The Feed Feed. All opinions, words, and giddy enthusiasm are entirely my own.

Basil Mascarpone Ice Cream with Pinot Noir Strawberry Swirl


For the Sauce Makes about 1 cup

  • 3 cups Strawberries
  • 2 cups Pinot Noir (or preferred red wine)
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • ½ cup honey

For the Ice Cream Makes about 4 cups

  • ½ + ¼ cup whole milk, divided
  • 1 cup + ¼ cup heavy cream, divided
  • 10oz mascarpone
  • 1 cup loosely packed, torn basil leaves
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup sugar (I like the flavor of brown sugar, but you can use what you like!)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Waffle cones or waffle cone cookies, optional


For the Sauce

Make ahead: you’ll want this sauce to be cooled completely before mixing into ice cream.

  • Combine all the ingredients in your Vitamix and pulse on variable 1 a couple times. This is for a textured sauce with small bits of strawberries throughout. You could also start on variable setting 1, slowly increasing to the highest setting, and blend for about 30 seconds for a completely smooth sauce.
  • Pour strawberry wine mixture into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat.
  • Reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring frequently, until mixture has reduced by about ¾  and easily coats the back of a spoon.
  • Allow sauce to cool at room temperature before pouring into a lidded container and placing in the fridge until ready to use.

For the Ice Cream

Be sure to make frozen components ahead.

  • Pour ½ cup milk and 1 cup heavy cream into two ice cube trays. You should have about 20 ice cubes overall.
  • Freeze overnight.
  • In your Vitamix add in remaining milk and cream, mascarpone, sugar, basil, salt, vanilla, and your milk and cream ice cubes.
  • Select the Frozen Desserts program and you’ll have ice cream in seconds!
  • Next, pour about half of your ice cream into a bread pan or other container.
  • Spoon in about 1/3 cup of the strawberry sauce and use a butter knife to swirl into the ice cream. Be careful not to over do it! Too much swirling will mix everything into a murky mess!
  • Pour in the rest of the ice cream, followed by another 1/3 cup of the sauce and swirl one last time.
  • Carefully cover ice cream with wax paper or lid and place in the freezer for a few hours to set.
  • Serve scoops of ice cream with any leftover sauce and waffle cone cookies.


Note: I tend to go easier on sweeteners than most. I don’t enjoy overly sugary desserts! You may want to increase the honey in the sauce and taste as you go. For the ice cream you can add an additional ¼ cup sugar.


More about the Vitamix Ascent 3500

Five program settings (for Smoothies, Hot Soups, Dips & Spreads, Frozen Desserts, and Self-Cleaning) automatically adjust to the container size you’ve selected, process your recipes, and stop the blender when complete. Built-in wireless connectivity will allow Ascent™ Series blenders to evolve with the latest innovations for years to come.

Program Settings
Five program settings ensure walk-away convenience and consistent results.

Touch Interface 
Touchscreen controls give the machine a sleek silhouette and are easily wiped clean.

You’re In Control
Variable Speed Control and Pulse feature let you manually fine-tune the texture of any recipe.

Built-In Wireless Connectivity
The motor base is able to read the container size you’ve chosen and automatically adjust program settings and maximum blending times accordingly.

Programmable Timer 
A built-in timer helps avoid over- or under-processing your custom recipes. Set the timer to the length of your blend, and it will turn the machine off automatically.

Pair with Any Self-Detect Containers
Add a range of compatible container sizes, building a customized blending system designed to fit your needs.

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8 Comment

  1. What what what!! This is like the ice cream that you’d pay $6 for a small cone at a gourmet ice cream shop! It’s that gorgeous and fancy-looking! I like it – it’s fun to be fancy every now and again!

    1. Christine says: Reply

      Hey! Thanks for stopping by! You’re so kind to say that! I was ben pleased with how everything turned out!And it is so much fun to indulge and get fancy from time to time!

  2. Simon says: Reply

    This opens up a whole new world! Wow this is just incredible. Your receipt sounds so good as well. Too bad I missed out on this one! Next time.

    1. Christine says: Reply

      Thank you! Yes, it was beyond delicious and my brother absconded the rest! haha!

  3. Saraha says: Reply

    I’m in aw of your style and the looks of this shoot. Everything is amazing and I can’t believe a blender was any part of it. So cool!

    1. Christine says: Reply

      Thank you so much for stopping by! And the kind words! I had a lot of fun with this shoot and I’m happy it showed! I can’t believe how amazing that Vitamix is. Haha my boyfriend and I use it all the time!

  4. Okay, first: these photos look incredible. Second: this recipe must be so delicious! I love mascarpone and I bet this ice cream is as delicious as I imagine. Thank you for posting the instructions!

    1. Christine says: Reply

      Hey there! Thank you so much! I loved this recipe! So creamy and decadent! Plus the Pinot Noir made it that much more indulgent! Thanks for stopping by!

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