For a few 4th of Julys during elementary school, Mom brought my brother and me along on her business trips to Arizona. While she analyzed the atmosphere from the tops of thin skyscrapers, we kids sat around our grandparents’ house, playing cards and shooting rubber bands at each other from across the living room. (Don’t ask.)
Mom came down before the holiday festivities began, and we all piled into her rental car after dinner. We drove to the Dairy Queen across town—a real treat compared to Rite Aid!—for dipped cones and dilly bars.
We were supposed to make the ice cream last until we arrived back at the house, but… Well, we used the excuse that they melted too quickly. But with the biggest sweet teeth in the family, my brother and I just couldn’t wait that long!
As the car pulled into the driveway, we dashed into the house, dropped our trash in the bin as we tore through the kitchen, and skidded to a stop on the back porch. When we rearranged the patio furniture, we could look out to the left to watch the fireworks show at the local high school. I always loved the red, white, and blue sparklers—they left glittery trails behind in the sky!
So for my final 4th of July recipe, I combined the best parts of those Arizona vacations. I put the ice cream into a sandwich (hoping it’d melt a littler slower) and decorated the cookies with dried blueberries and cherries to resemble my favorite fireworks.
These creamy ice cream cookie sandwiches are a great summer dessert!
- Stir the ice cream (or frozen yogurt) and cool whip in a freezer-safe bowl. Place in the freezer for at least 1 hour before assembling the ice cream sandwiches.
- To prepare the cookies, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. In a large bowl, whisk together the butter and egg white. Stir in the yogurt and vanilla, mixing well. Add in the brown sugar, smearing any clumps on the side of the bowl with a spatula. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet, and stir just until incorporated. Refrigerate for 45 minutes, or until no longer sticky.
- Preheat the oven to 350°, and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Divide the cookie dough into 16 balls, and place on the prepared baking sheets, leaving at least 2” of space between each. Using a small piece of wax paper (about a 2”- or 3”-square), flatten each dough ball to a 1/8” thick circle. Evenly distribute the dried fruit on top of each, gently pressing into the cookie dough. Bake at 350° for 9 minutes. Cool on the pans for 5 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- To assemble, cut long strips of tin foil that are 3” wide. Fold each strip in half. Pair similarly sized cookies together. Wrap a tin foil strip around one cookie with the dried fruit side facing down (see Notes), and secure the ends with a paperclip. Repeat with 7 other cookies, and place on a clean metal baking sheet. (See photo below recipe for how the cookies should look.)
- Remove the ice cream (or frozen yogurt) mixture from the freezer. Working quickly, place 3 tablespoons of the mixture on top of each cookie wrapped in tin foil. Even out the surface of the filling with a spoon. Press another cookie on top. Repeat with the remaining cookies. Freeze the ice cream sandwiches for at least 2 hours before serving.
Notes: Dried wild blueberries are slightly smaller than regular blueberries. I found mine at Trader Joe’s.
You want to chop the dried cherries to be about the same size as the dried wild blueberries. For me, this meant cutting each dried cherry into fourths or sixths.
The directions above will yield 8 ice cream cookie sandwiches with the dried fruit on the outside. Once frozen, the dried fruit can become a little pokey, so you could assemble the sandwiches inside out (with the dried fruit touching the ice cream or frozen yogurt) if that’s an issue.
This is how the ice cream sandwiches should look as you put them in the freezer. Don’t worry about the ice cream that leaks out the bottom—you can sneak a spoonful of that as a snack for later!
P.S. Have you bought your copy of my new cookbook, Table for Two? It’s available here for only $3.99!
Christine @ 24 Carrot Kitchen says...
Who doesn’t love ice cream sandwiches! These look awesome!
Thanks Christine! I have no idea how anyone can be immune to ice cream sandwiches. They’re so cute and yummy!
I love the cookie decorations! They look delicious!! Ice cream sandwiches are such a classic, and SO delicious!! These look GREAT! Eating ice cream in Arizona is DANGEROUS! HA.
Thanks Brittany!! It’s so true… Eating anything that can melt in AZ is dangerous! Last summer in Phoenix, I walked to Subway, which was 4 blocks away from our hotel, and I got a free chocolate chip cookie. By the time I made it back to the hotel, all of the chocolate chips had melted! At least it tasted like it was fresh out of the oven. 😉