Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Cindy Barr
10 servings

It is hard to beat the sweet and salty flavor of this indulgent yet lightened ice cream.

How to Make It

Step 1

Place milk in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Heat to 180° or until tiny bubbles form around edge of pan (do not boil). Place egg yolks in a large bowl; stir with a whisk. Gradually add half of hot milk to yolks, stirring constantly. Return yolk mixture to pan.

Step 2

Combine sugar, cream, and butter in a large saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil, stirring until sugar melts. Cook 3 minutes without stirring. Remove from heat; stir in sea salt. Gradually add caramel mixture to yolk mixture, stirring constantly. Return pan to low heat; cook until a thermometer registers 160°. Place pan in a large ice-filled bowl until completely cooled, stirring occasionally. Pour mixture into the freezer can of an ice-cream freezer; freeze according to manufacturer's instructions. Drain ice water from freezer bucket; repack with salt and ice. Cover with kitchen towels, and let stand 1 hour or until firm. Scoop about 1/2 cup ice cream into each of 10 dishes; sprinkle evenly with flake salt.

Ratings & Reviews

Award winning recipe!

June 18, 2015
I have never gone wrong with a dessert recipe from Cooking Light, and this is no exception! My church had an ice cream contest last weekend, and since my husband and I love Talenti Sea Salt Caramel gelato, decided to give this recipe a go. I had half and half in the fridge, so used that in place of the milk and heavy cream (didn't seem to affect the calories, not sure about the fat content). I used the full amount of salt (1tsp.) in the caramel, but used kosher salt as I had that on hand. I used my Cuisinart countertop ice cream maker, and at the very end of the churning added in 12 quartered Dove sea salt caramel & dark chocolate promises. Yum! The texture was creamy, the flavor outstanding, and it won the prize for best ice cream over full fat ice creams. This recipe is a keeper.

klwhitney's Review

October 31, 2013
Wonderful! I was looking for a good ice cream recipe to try in my new little ice cream maker. Made a half batch of this one because the machine only holds three cups. It does not taste at all lightened. The original sodium content was too high for a dessert in my opinion, so I reduced the salt in the recipe by half (couldn't leave it out because homemade caramel needs a little salt to taste right) and left it without the flaked salt on top. Still, really great caramel flavor, better than store bought.

CindyAustin17's Review

August 03, 2013
Very good, creamy and easy to make. The texture was perfect for a light ice cream. Definately will make again.

Tinkerbell0914's Review

July 22, 2013

fdr1968's Review

June 02, 2013
I loved this and I don't have an ice cream maker! I poured the finished product into a rectangular casserole dish, popped it into the freezer, and stirred it every 30 minutes for the first hour, then let it set. Awesome!

kmrob46970's Review

May 21, 2013
We have made this two years in a row for our annual Memorial Day party. Everyone loves it and it goes very quickly. We always make two kinds and this one disappears first. People are looking forward to it again this year!


October 16, 2012
What size of ice cream freezer?

AuburnGirl95's Review

August 16, 2012
This was really delicious and approved by the whole family. Some added pecans, some added a little chocolate, some added both. We are really looking forward to the leftovers tonight!

LoriInNC's Review

June 17, 2012
While the texture was what you'd expect from a "light" ice cream, the flavor was wonderful - a deep, rich caramel. We'll definitely make this again!

LuciaKeller's Review

June 11, 2012