Black Ice Cream {Vegan}

This week, I’m sharing recipes for weirdly-coloured food. This is a current food trend with bucks against the really popular unicorn or rainbow food trends of last summer where everything was happy pastels.

This current food trend features dark-coloured food, or “goth food.” I recently shared a recipe for a purple panna cotta dessert, and today, it’s black ice cream.

Black Ice Cream Vegan

I know… what? It sounds offputting, right?

Last summer, the whole black foods trend started with black soft serve ice cream from a food truck sponsored by Kraken (yes, the ice cream had rum in it, as well). Mister in Yaletown, who makes nitro ice cream, also has a black ice cream on its menu. Many health-conscious types are swearing by a detox black lemonade, and Burger King in Japan launched a black burger (the bun is black). Here in Vancouver, you can get a Noir Burger at the Fresh Window Cafe.

The mystery ingredient in all these black foods is the same; not squid ink, but activated charcoal.

Want more Aquafaba recipes? Check out my new cookbook: Aquafabulous!: 100+ Egg-Free Vegan Recipes Using Aquafaba (Bean Water)

Now, if you own a water filter system of any type, the filter is made up primarily of activated charcoal. It’s a powerful cleanser and detoxifier. The kind that you can buy to use in your food is made from coconut shells, primarily, and I got mine at the newly-opened Soap Dispensary on Main St.

The benefit of these kinds of foods is that they are supposed to be detoxifying to your body. It sure makes for pretty, Instagram-worthy food, but it likely isn’t going to be a cure for cancer, or even your hangover. There may be some health benefits, however.

Weirdly, when you add it to foods, it affects the colour, but not the odour or the taste. I added 3 tsp to my favourite vegan ice cream recipe and the result tastes the same as it always does, but the ice cream itself is a velvety black colour.

The colour doesn’t seem to turn people off. I recently did a poll on Instagram, and 97% of the people that responded said they would try it.

Would you?? Have you had any experience with black foods? Let me know in the comments below.

Black Ice Cream

Black Ice Cream {Vegan}


  • 3 tbsp aquafaba
  • 12 cup granulated sugar + 2 tbsp, divided
  • 12 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 can (14 oz/400 mL) coconut milk,
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 18 tsp vanilla bean seeds
  • 3 tsp activated charcoal powder


  1. In mixer bowl, combine aquafaba and 2 tbsp sugar; sprinkle in xanthan gum. Attach wire whisk and mixer bowl to mixer. Set speed to Low and beat for 2 minutes. Turn speed up to Medium and beat for 2 minutes. Set to highest speed and beat mixture until thick peaks form, about 4 to 6 minutes.
  2. Remove bowl from mixer and add coconut milk, vanilla extract, vanilla seeds, activated charcoal and the remaining 12 cup sugar. Carefully whisk by hand, until aquafaba mixture is mostly incorporated into ice cream.
  3. Scoop into ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions. I have a Cuisinart, and it takes about 20-30 minutes. Transfer ice cream to a covered container and place in the freezer for 2 to 3 hours to set.


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