{Skinny} Rainbow Ice Cream Cake with Fresh Fruit

So I’m on a bit of an ice cream cake kick. Summer is just the perfect time for them!

And this ice cream cake isn’t difficult to make – you don’t even need an ice cream maker. It takes a little time, but less time than it would take to bake all the different layers as actual cake and then layer and ice everything.

And more importantly it’s skinny! Yes, SKINNY! Plus, it’s full of fresh fruit! So much goodness I could die!

Besides, who can resist the beautiful colors? It’s just so pretty!

Skinny Rainbow Ice Cream Cake with Fresh Fruit (no ice cream maker!) by Life, Love and Sugar

I have been wanting to post a rainbow ice cream for a while now actually. This one is my second attempt. The first didn’t quite turn out like I wanted. I was so bummed.

The first time around I thought it’d be cool to color and flavor the ice cream with jello mix. That way I could avoid using icing color.

Unfortunately, I had to use a fair amount of the jello mix to to get the color I wanted. The end result was grainy and didn’t really freeze very well. It just never quite got firm enough.

Now that I have this version though, I’m actually kind of glad that one bombed. Fresh fruit is the way to go! Way better than jello flavor – even if I had to use icing color!

The fruity flavor is just perfect and the fact that it’s fruit makes this delectable ice cream cake that much less guilt-inducing.

Skinny Rainbow Ice Cream Cake with Fresh Fruit (no ice cream maker!) by Life, Love and Sugar

I even forwent the real icing for Cool Whip.

Can we just talk about Cool Whip for a sec? I frickin’ love that stuff. My mom gives me crap because “it’s not real whipped cream” but I’m ok with that. I literally run my finger right through the stuff and go to town. Before I know it, half the carton is gone and I’m trying to find someone to blame it on. ๐Ÿ™‚ We’re actually lucky it made it into the cake. And it was such a breeze to ice a cake with. So light and easy to spread. Dreamy!

And no, Cool Whip has not paid me to rave about them. I wish. This was entirely for free. I just love the stuff and use it all the time. You’re welcome Cool Whip. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Moving onto the fruity layers. These are the fruits I used, but you can easily substitute other fruits if you prefer.

1. Purple = Grape
2. Blue = Blueberry
3. Green = Kiwi, but I think I’d like to try lime next time. I think the seeds from the kiwi mess up the flavor a bit, so if you use the kiwi, make sure you remove the little black seeds.
4. Yellow = Pineapple
5. Orange = Peach
6. Red = Strawberry

Between each fruity layer is a layer of Cool Whip, which is actually great in place of icing because it isn’t as rich. It doesn’t take away from the taste of the fruit and keeps it light.

Skinny Rainbow Ice Cream Cake with Fresh Fruit (no ice cream maker!) by Life, Love and Sugar

So if I haven’t sold you on the awesomeness of this cake and why you should make it yet, here’s one more reason: because I said so. ๐Ÿ™‚

One more thing: please don’t be intimidated by the instructions. They seem long, but it’s mostly a lot of layering and freezing. I tried to provide plenty of detail in the instructions so you don’t get confused.

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Rainbow Ice Cream Cake
Recipe

{Skinny} Rainbow Ice Cream Cake with Fresh Fruit

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 1 hr 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 2 hrs
  • Total Time: 3 hrs 30 mins
  • Yield: 12-14 Slices
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: No Bake
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This Rainbow Ice Cream Cake is made with no churn ice cream and fresh fruit for a fun and tasty ice cream cake!


Ingredients

ICE CREAM LAYERS

  • 20 oz cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup + 1/8 cup milk
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 20 oz Cool Whip (OR 2 1/2 recipes ofย homemade whipped cream)
  • 1 cup grapes
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 cup chopped kiwi (about 2 kiwis),ย ORย juice from 2 limes
  • 1 cup chopped pineapple
  • 1 cup chopped peaches (about 2 peaches)
  • 1 cup chopped strawberries
  • Purple, blue, green, yellow, orange and redย Gel Icing Color
FILLING
  • 12 oz Cool Whip

ICING

  • 8 oz Cool Whip

Instructions

MAKING THE ICE CREAM:

1. Mix cream cheese, milk and sugar together with a mixer until completely combined. Should be somewhat thick and creamy.
2. Fold in the Cool Whip.
3. Separate ice cream mixture evenly between 6 bowls, about 1 3/4 cup + 1/8 cup per bowl.
4. Puree or crush each fruit, adding each to a different bowl so that you have all 6 flavors of ice cream.
NOTE:ย I found the fruit tough to puree in a food processor because each amount is so small. I used a muddler to crush each of them instead. Do whichever you prefer.
5. Add desired amount of appropriateย gel icing colorย to each bowl to get the shade of each color you want.

LAYERING THE ICE CREAM:

1. Prepare your two 8-inch cake pans with parchment paper andย cake circles. You can use spingform cake pans or regular. For more on pan preparation, see my note below.
NOTE:ย The rest of the recipe will be written as if you are using 2 pans. If you are using 3, you’ll do two layers of ice cream in each pan instead of 3.
2. In the bottom of one pan, add the purple ice cream. Spread evenly.
3. In the bottom of the other pan, add the yellow ice cream. Spread evenly.
4. Put both pans in the freezer for about 45 minutes to an hour, or until fairly firm. It should be firm enough that you can spread another layer on top without messing the previous layer up.
5. Add a cup of Cool Whip to each pan, spreading evenly. Make sure you know which pan has which color in it.
6. Freeze again for about 30 minutes or until firm.
7. Add the blue ice cream to the pan with the purple ice cream. Spread evenly.
8. Add the orange ice cream to the pan with the yellow ice cream. Spread evenly.
9. Freeze again for about 45 minutes to an hour or until firm.
10. Add a cup of Cool Whip to each pan, spreading evenly. Freeze again for about 30 minutes or until firm.
11. Add the green ice cream to the pan with purple and blue ice cream. Spread evenly.
12. Add the red ice cream to the pan with yellow and orange ice cream. Spread evenly.
13. Freeze again for about 45 minutes to an hour or until firm.
14. Add a cup of Cool Whip to the pan with the green ice cream on top. Do not add more Cool Whip to the pan with the red ice cream. This layer will be the filling between the green and yellow layers. Freeze again for about 30 minutes or until both layers areย completely frozen.

PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER:

1. Once completely frozen, remove both halves from their pans. You may need to run a knife around the top edge, but the parchment paper should have kept it from sticking. If you used sringform pans, remove the sides. If you used regular cake pans, lift the cakes out using the saran wrap. Remove all parchment paper and saran wrap and remove the cake circle from the bottom of the yellow ice cream.
2. Spread a very thin layer of Cool Whip on top of the Cool Whip on the green ice cream, just to give something for the other layer to adhere to.
3. Put the yellow/orange/red cake half on top of the purple/blue/green cake half. The green and yellow should meet in the middle. You should end up with purple on the bottom of the full cake and red on the top.
4. Freeze again until firm and steady.
5. Frost your cake with the remaining Cool Whip and freeze.

Notes

NOTE about preparing the pans:ย I used two 8-inch by 3-inch cake pans (not springform). This is a pretty tall cake, about 6 inches in height. Because my pans were 3 inches high, I only needed 2 pans, but if your pans are 2 inches high, you will probably need 3. Using multiple pans allows you to make the two halves (or 3 parts if you use three 2-inch pans) all at the same time. The other option is to use the same pan for each section, finishing and removing one section before moving to the next. It will work, but just take longer to get through all the layers.
The best way to prepare the pans is to put aย cardboard cake circleย (found at craft stores like Michaels and JoAnns; I’ve also seen them at WalMart) in the bottom to help you remove it from the pan when done. You also should put parchment paper around the edges, allowing it to stick above the top edge of the pan. This will keep the ice cream from sticking to the sides of the pan.
If you are using aย regular cake pan, as I did, I recommend putting Saran wrap (or other clear wrap) in the pan underneath the cake circle and parchment paper (so put it in first). I used it to help lift the cake out of the pan once it was frozen. It came out really easily.

Keywords: rainbow ice cream cake with fresh fruit

Enjoy!

This post linked to TidyMom, Shaken Together, Inside BruCrew Life, Mandy’s Recipe Box, Chef in Training, Sugar Bee Crafts, Not Just a Housewife, Naptime Creations, Pint Sized Baker and Love Bakes Good Cakes.

 

Loving ice cream cake as much as I am? Here are some other ice cream treats:

Funfetti Cake Batter Ice Cream Cake

Funfetti Cake Batter Ice Cream Cake With Rainbow Chip Icing

Frozen Fruit Salad Cupcakes

Frozen_Fruit_Salad_Cupcakes3

Funfetti Cake Batter Ice Cream Pie

funfetti_ice_cream_pie4

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream Pie

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream Pie

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Recipe rating

60 Comments
  1. nidha sharma

    Can this be made ahead of time.. my daughter’s birthday is this weekend, i was thinking if i could make and freeze it on one of the weeknights.

  2. Weekly Wonders! #4

    […] Is it weird that I’ve never tried ice cream cake? It’s always seemed to be a very American thing. This recipe uses a ton of fresh fruit so it’s practically a healthy desert! {Image 1} […]

  3. Singaporean

    Hello, I am interested in making the cake and I would like to ask if we can substitute cool whip with whipping cream? Will it be able to hold the cake? Or could we even substitute the white layer with something else all together? Thanks!

    1. lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com

      Yes, you can. I’ve linked to the recipe I use for homemade whipped cream in the recipe. You can add up to 1/2 cup of powdered sugar to it though, so that it’s a thicker whipped cream.

  4. Rachelle Black

    This cake looks AWESOME! My son is turning 12 and picked it for his birthday cake. He doesn’t care for pineapples and I was wondering if there was a different fruit for that layer that you would recommend. Thanks!

    1. lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com

      Awesome, I’m so glad you are going to try it! Some other yellow options that might be good – maybe lemon? or mango?

  5. lovebakesgoodcakes

    Wow! This has to be one of the prettiest cakes ever! New follower on FB and through RSS ….. thanks so much for linking up to All My Bloggy Friends ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. lovebakesgoodcakes

    Wow! This has to be one of the prettiest cakes ever! New follower on FB and through RSS ….. thanks so much for linking up to All My Bloggy Friends ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. lovebakesgoodcakes

    Wow! This has to be one of the prettiest cakes ever! New follower on FB and through RSS ….. thanks so much for linking up to All My Bloggy Friends ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Life, Love and Sugar

    Thanks Justin! The ice cream is a little lighter than a cake and the fresh fruit flavor is great!

  9. Justin

    how cool, I thought this was a rainbow cake when I saw the photo. Love that you used cool whip and cream cheese. Bet it’s good!

  10. Justin

    how cool, I thought this was a rainbow cake when I saw the photo. Love that you used cool whip and cream cheese. Bet it’s good!

    1. Life, Love and Sugar

      Thanks Justin! The ice cream is a little lighter than a cake and the fresh fruit flavor is great!

    1. Life, Love and Sugar

      Cool Whip is an imitation whipped cream. You can get it at most every grocery store (in the U.S.), including Super Target and Walmart.

      1. Lindsay

        Yes, the recipe mentions using a springform pan or regular pan. It just needs to be 8 inches.

  11. Lisa

    This looks great! I live in Australia and we don’t have cool whip. Can I just beat up some cream? Will it freeze ok? Thanks!

    1. Life, Love and Sugar

      Hi Lisa! I’m actually not sure how whipping cream will do, but I’ve gotten that question a few times this week in reference to my Snickers Peanut Butter Brownie Ice Cream Cake. I’d love to know the answer myself, so I got some whipping cream and plan on testing it out myself today. I’ll let you know what I discover!

  12. Lisa

    This looks great! I live in Australia and we don’t have cool whip. Can I just beat up some cream? Will it freeze ok? Thanks!

    1. Life, Love and Sugar

      Hi Lisa! I’m actually not sure how whipping cream will do, but I’ve gotten that question a few times this week in reference to my Snickers Peanut Butter Brownie Ice Cream Cake. I’d love to know the answer myself, so I got some whipping cream and plan on testing it out myself today. I’ll let you know what I discover!

      1. Life, Love and Sugar

        So I tested it out this weekend and whipping cream works great! I used a cup of heavy whipping cream, 2 tbsp of powdered sugar and 1 tsp of vanilla.

  13. Lisa

    This looks great! I live in Australia and we don’t have cool whip. Can I just beat up some cream? Will it freeze ok? Thanks!

    1. Life, Love and Sugar

      Hi Lisa! I’m actually not sure how whipping cream will do, but I’ve gotten that question a few times this week in reference to my Snickers Peanut Butter Brownie Ice Cream Cake. I’d love to know the answer myself, so I got some whipping cream and plan on testing it out myself today. I’ll let you know what I discover!

      1. Life, Love and Sugar

        So I tested it out this weekend and whipping cream works great! I used a cup of heavy whipping cream, 2 tbsp of powdered sugar and 1 tsp of vanilla.

      2. Molly Ann Baines

        Did you whip the cream & powdered sugar first? If so, do you add the pwdrd sug. before whipping, and to what degree (soft/stiff) do you whip it?

      3. Lindsay

        I used to whip the cream a little before adding the powdered sugar, but you can really just add them both at the same time. Whip it until it’s nice and stiff.

  14. Sally

    This has to be the prettiest cake EVER! Simply gorgeous with all those colors. ๐Ÿ™‚ Perfect for summertime!

  15. Sally

    This has to be the prettiest cake EVER! Simply gorgeous with all those colors. ๐Ÿ™‚ Perfect for summertime!

  16. Jess @ On Sugar Mountain

    What a gorgeous cake!!! And it’s made of ice cream?!? AND SKINNY?!

    I think I just fell off my seat. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Lindsay
About Lindsay

I'm a wife and mom to twin boys, a baby girl and a sweet black lab with a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the sugar!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12