The Cost of Making Ice Cream
I had a comment on my last blog post on making ice cream and how expensive it is. Perhaps some of it has to do with the ingredients you choose to use and the type of ice cream you make. I think it is also important to note that the recipe makes a whole gallon of ice cream and that would be like buying 2 typical containers from the grocery store. Ice cream is one of those foods that are so full of garbage ingredients and chemicals it is not funny. It is hard to find really good quality ice cream. I was even looking the other day at the ice cream my food co-op sells and was disappointed to see that it contained natural flavors (another name for MSG) and gums to help make it smooth. And the cost was ridiculous. So this morning I roughly calculated the cost in making a gallon of homemade strawberry ice cream with better quality ingredients. I personally think that even if you used less than excellent ingredients (like sugar instead of cane juice crystals) you could cut the cost that I came to AND still have a much better quality product than what is typically in the grocery store. In any case.. here is my breakdown of costs ..
Eggs: $1.37 – right now I don’t have my own chicken eggs. I buy free range, organic eggs from my food co-op for $2.75 a dozen.
Milk: .50 cents - I buy whole milk (rbst free) from Costco (about $4 for 2 gallons) normally (when I don’t have enough goat milk or it is not milk season.) Since you pour the milk into the ice cream maker when you have added everything else I don’t have an exact measurement.. I am guessing maybe 2 to 4 cups of milk. So I rounded the price up for 4 cups.
Cream: $1.25 (I buy cream in 2qt containers from Costco – it is rbst free and not organic, organic would bring the price up)
Strawberries: $2.50 (I bought 4lbs for $4.99 from Costco and used about half of them. I rounded up for this cost analysis)
My estimated cost using the above ingredients for one gallon of ice cream is:
I think this is not a bad price to pay for the quality of ingredients put into it. The best ice cream (ingredient wise) I can find in the grocery store is Haagen Daz. They are over $4.00 per pint making the cost of a gallon $32.00.. haa.. haaa..
Breyers is another ice cream with pretty good ingredients and they don’t even sell half gallon containers any more.. they have been downsized. I think I paid about $2.80 awhile back for 1 1/2 quarts (but I have seen the price over $3 per 1 1/2 quarts). At the price I paid that would make it about $7.50 for a gallon (if my math is off it is because I have only had one cup of coffee this morning and my brain is still foggy! LOL)..
The cost for a 1/2 gallon of organic ice cream from my food co-op comes to a whopping $11.63!! making it over $23 for a gallon.
Another thought I had on the price is that this price includes strawberries. If you were to make vanilla or chocolate ice cream the cost of vanilla extract and/or cocoa powder would be less than the cost for strawberries. So the type of ice cream you choose to make can also influence the price.
In the big scheme of it all I had not really considered that homemade ice cream was a huge expense, especially for the quality of food my family gets for the money. I do know that it is also not the most frugal of all desserts either, but still sits somewhere around reasonable in my thoughts and sure makes for a great family treat once in awhile.