This is the best Fried Ice Cream because there is absolutely no frying involved — just delicious balls of vanilla ice cream coated in a cooked cinnamon cornflakes mixture and topped with all your favorite ice cream toppings! 

We love topping this no fry fried ice cream with Old Fashioned Hot Fudge Sauce or Salted Butterscotch Sauce and some Homemade Whipped Cream! Top with a maraschino cherry and you have the perfect fried ice cream dessert.

No Fry Fried Ice Cream topped with hot fudge, whipped cream and maraschino cherry.

Why This Recipe Works

  • Fried ice cream recipe without frying. You are going to love this best fried ice cream because you don’t have to fry anything! No hot oil, no mess, no deep frying, just coated ice cream balls!
  • Easy fried ice cream. Since this is a no fry fried ice cream recipe, it makes things super easy. You simply coat the ice cream balls in the cooked cereal mixture to get the same effect! 
  • Fancy fried ice cream. This no fry ice cream recipe is a great and easy way to dress up your classic vanilla ice cream bowl! Make dessert extra special by taking a few simple steps like freezing the ice cream into balls. It’s a fun way to make your normal bowl of ice cream much more special!

Ingredient Notes

Fried ice cream ingredients on a white background: vanilla ice cream, cornflakes, cinnamon, butter, salt.
  • Cornflakes: You’ll need about 6 cups of cornflakes cereal. Crush it so it’s a coarse texture. The crunchy corn flakes will make the outer coating on these delicious ice cream balls taste like they came out of a deep fryer but without hassle. 
  • Unsalted Butter: The way we can make fired ice cream without frying is by cooking the cornflakes with butter on the stove so the cereal mixture becomes nice and crunchy. This will mimic the fried texture of the ice cream, without actually having to fry it! 
  • Ground Cinnamon: The bit of cinnamon adds the perfect flavor element. 
  • Vanilla Ice Cream: You can use whatever ice cream flavor you want! I went for French vanilla for the classic fried ice cream recipe. 

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Shape the ice cream. Take large scoops of ice cream and form it into 4 round balls (about 1.5 cups worth of ice cream per ball). Place on a baking sheet lined with wax paper and freeze for 2 hours or until firm.
  2. Make the corn flake mixture. While the ice cream balls are freezing, add the 1/2 cup butter to a medium saucepan and place over medium heat. Once melted, add the 3 cups crushed corn flakes, 2 tsp ground cinnamon and 1/4 tsp salt. Stir to combine. Cook the corn flakes mixture for 2 minutes. The cornflakes will be slightly toasted. Remove from the heat and let cool completely.
  3. Roll ice cream balls in crushed cornflakes mixture. Remove the frozen ice cream balls from the freezer and cover them completely in the fried ice cream cornflakes coating, gently pressing the mixture into the ice cream ball. Return to the baking sheet and freeze for 30 minutes. Continue with each ball of ice cream.
Four images showing how to make fried ice cream without frying it in oil; top left photo is 4 ice cream balls on baking sheet, top right is cornflakes in a skillet, bottom left is a cinnamon cornflake mixture, bottom right photo is hands pressing cornflake mixture against frozen ice cream ball.
  1. Top and serve. Remove the no-fry friend ice cream from the freezer and serve! Provide toppings for people to use to make this the ultimate dessert! We love chocolate sauce, butterscotch sauce, caramel sauce, whipped cream, maraschino cherries and more! Enjoy!
4 No fry Fried Ice Cream balls covered in crushed cornflake cereal on a baking sheet.

Recipe Tips

The cornflake mixture will get soggy the longer it stays on the ice cream. Eat within several hours of making the fried ice cream balls. (And as a note, be sure to store in the freezer until right before serving!)

Feel free to make smaller balls of ice cream for any smaller mouths you are feeding! 

The cornflake topping would be yummy to use to top an ice cream sundae if you have any leftovers. 

You can freeze the ice cream balls in a muffin tin if that fits in your freezer better. It can also help to keep the balls in place if you (like me) are balancing the tray on top of bags or frozen fruit and vegetables. 

Use a food processor to crush the cornflakes. Or you can place them in a ziplock bag and use a rolling pin to crush. 

You’ll see that other recipes like this will add sugar to the cornflakes mixture. You’re welcome to add 1-2 tablespoons if you’d like. I didn’t want the coating to be overly sweet since I knew I’d be adding some fudge sauce and whipped cream. Plus the ice cream is plenty sweet without it! 

Make Ahead, Storing, and Freezing

You’ll need to make this recipe ahead of time to a certain extent because the ice cream balls need time to freeze in the freezer.  

Store the fried ice cream in the freezer! Just note that the longer the not fried fried ice cream balls sit, the softer the cornflake topping will be. 

Recipe FAQs

Does fried ice cream melt?

Yes it does! So be sure to keep it in the freezer until you want to serve it. If you are wondering if fried ice cream melts while it’s frying, it doesn’t because the ice cream is only in the fryer long enough to fry the outside. The middle stays frozen. The beauty about this fried ice cream recipe is that it is a no-fry fried ice cream! 

Does fried ice cream have gluten?

Yes. The ice cream is covered in a corn flake coating. Most cornflakes are made with gluten, so be sure to get a certified gluten free option if you want gluten free fried ice cream. 

How does fried ice cream work?

The ice cream balls are coated in a cornflakes mixture and then deep fried until the coating is fried but the ice cream center is still frozen. You won’t need to worry about any of that since this is a fried ice cream recipe without frying! 

Fried Ice Cream ball on a black rimmed white plate, the no fried fried ice cream is topped with hot fudge drizzle, whipped cream dollop, and a maraschino cherry.

More Ice Cream Recipes

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Fried Ice Cream with a spoon scooping through the ice cream ball.
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No Fry Fried Ice Cream

Make fried ice cream the easy way… without having to deep fry anything. A crunchy and buttery cinnamon cornflake mixture covers a frozen ice cream ball then topped with your favorite toppings! It's fast, easy to make, and so delicious!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Freezer Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 4 servings


  • 3 cups cornflakes cereal - crushed (about 6 cups of regular cornflakes prior to crushing)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large scoops vanilla ice cream

Topping Ideas

  • hot fudge
  • caramel
  • whipped cream
  • maraschino cherries
  • sprinkles


  • Shape the ice cream into 4 round balls about 1.5 cups worth of ice cream. Place on a wax paper lined plate or baking sheet and freeze for 2 hours or until firm.
  • While the ice cream balls are freezing place a skillet over medium heat and melt the butter. Once melted add the crushed cornflakes, cinnamon, and salt. Stir to combine. Cook for 2 minutes or until the cornflakes are slightly toasted. Remove from heat and let cool completely. 
  • Remove the frozen ice cream balls from the freezer and place in them in the crushed cornflake mixture. Using your hands press the cornflake mixture into the ice cream up and around the sides until the entire ball is covered. Place the covered ball on a wax paper lined plate or tray and freeze for 20-30 minutes or until firm again. Continue until all of the ice cream is rolled and covered in the cornflake mixture. 
  • Right before serving remove the ice cream balls from the freezer, top with desired toppings, and enjoy! 


The cornflake mixture will get soggy the longer it stays on the ice cream. So you’ll want to eat within several hours of making the fried ice cream balls.


Calories: 418kcal (21%)Carbohydrates: 34g (11%)Protein: 4g (8%)Fat: 30g (46%)Saturated Fat: 19g (95%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 90mg (30%)Sodium: 354mg (15%)Potassium: 178mg (5%)Fiber: 2g (8%)Sugar: 16g (18%)Vitamin A: 1365IU (27%)Vitamin C: 5mg (6%)Calcium: 102mg (10%)Iron: 6mg (33%)
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Mexican
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