As promised, I must deliver on this ridiculously simple and amazingly delicious gluten free version of, you guessed it, Dairy Queen’s infamous Ice Cream Cakes. I made this in 2016 for Mother’s Day, as mentioned in my post 10 Tips for Hosting the Perfect Mother’s Day Brunch, and chose this because it’s a dessert that must be made the night before, leaving more free time the day of. This weekend kick starts picnic season, and surprising everyone at your picnic with this cool and pretty dessert, would definitely wow a crowd.
This dessert went over so well with my in-laws and parents on Mother’s Day last year, that I believe they had all wished I would repeat for Father’s Day. I seriously regretted not repeating the recipe this year for Mother’s Day. But lucky for you gluten-free fanatics, my girls and I whipped one together just for fun this week!
Now, I was recreating this from memory, and quickly ran to the store grabbing the essentials. There are two major differences between the one I photographed, and the one I made last year. The first major difference is the one in the photographs only has one half gallon of vanilla ice cream; whereas the exact Dairy Queen Replica cake requires one full gallon of vanilla ice cream. The second difference is the quantity of whipped topping used to “ice” your cake. So be prepared for the one following the recipe below to be a bit taller than the one picture here.
To make this cake you will need a spring form pan, preferably a 9-inch. I believe mine was a 10-inch, which made a wider and flatter cake. (but just as delicious!)
You will need to line the bottom and sides with wax paper. Remove the bottom piece of your pan and trace it on to a piece of waxed paper.
Next line the edges of your pan with waxed paper. Tape it together if you are going for a cake that’s taller than the sides of your pan.
I like to make this after getting home from the grocery store. Ice cream seems to naturally soften while shopping, loading, and unloading groceries. By the time everything is put away the ice cream is the perfect consistency to spread evenly.
If you have a half gallon of chocolate, you will need a full gallon of vanilla. Begin by evenly spreading the chocolate in the bottom of the pan. Now, this is not an ad for ice cream brands, but if I’m being totally honest, Great Value brand ice cream has to be my favorite carton ice cream on the market right now. It’s so rich!
Next, take a container of gluten free chocolate cookies with vanilla filling (aka, Gluten Free Oreo alternatives) and let out all that aggression from the week with a few good swift whacks of a rolling pin.
Crumbling these Oreos evenly over your chocolate ice cream will create that delicious crunchy mystery layer hidden inside the Dairy Queen cakes. Place in the freezer at least 30 minutes.
Next, soften two jars of hot fudge just until pliable. Drop the fudge on to the semi-frozen layer of ice-cream and cookie crumbs, and gently spread until evenly coated. If you are quick handed go ahead and spread the softened vanilla ice cream on to the fudge. If you are not comfortable with this, place the cake back in the freezer an additional 30 minutes until the fudge solidifies again.
This is where my pictures are not a proper replica of the recipe provided below. I only used a half gallon, but strongly recommend using a full gallon to create your cake.
Place back into the freezer for a solid 30 minutes to an hour. Once the cake is nice a solid, remove spring-form sides and wax lining.
Don’t worry if your cake isn’t perfectly smooth or even. A swift hand and lovely thick whipped topping “icing” will smooth out all of those bumps and cracks. You literally just open a package of cool whip and begin to “ice your cake, starting by evening out the top of your ice cream.
Once you have a nice even layer of cool whip on the cake, place the cake back in to the freezer for at least two hours or overnight. If you want to get really fancy, consider this your “Crumb layer, and use a second container of cool whip at room temperature to put a smoother layer over the entire thing, even adding a little piping on the edge of the cake to get that true “DQ” feel.
Remove the cake from the freezer just before serving and top with sprinkles, pipe on some decorative cool whip or take my approach and line that bad boy with more cookies! Chop your gluten free cookies in half and gently press them into the frozen dessert.
Ok, some little fingers found their way into this pile of cookies before ever decorating the final product. And trust me, I got one official stamp of approval on the end product from a 3 year old semi-pro dessert sampler.
And with a few simple steps, zero cooking, a little free time, and a whole lotta ice cream carton licking, you can FINALLY have a gluten-free ice cream cake that will most certainly”Take the cake” to any store-bought ice cream cake around. Happy Summer!
Gluten Free DQ Knock Off Ice Cream Cake
- 1/2 gallon chocolate ice cream
- 1 gallon vanilla ice cream
- 1 jar hot fudge
- 1 container gluten free chocolate cookies with vanilla cream (plus additional for topping)
- 2 8 oz containers Cool Whip –OPTIONAL
- sprinkles, cherries, additional cookies to decorate
- Line a 9-inch spring form pan with wax paper. Spread softened half gallon of chocolate ice cream in bottom of pan.
- Crush chocolate cookies and sprinkle over ice cream. Drizzle hot fudge sauce (slightly warm) over cookies. Place in freezer 30 minutes or until solid.
- Spread softened gallon of vanilla ice cream over top. Free again until firm.(30 minutes to 1 hour)
- Remove from freezer. Ice with cool whip. Decorate with optional toppings, return to freezer at least 2 hours or over night. Serve immediately after pulling from freezer.