Difference Between Custard and Ice Cream

Sweets are a sweet weakness of all, no matter whether you are a toddler or an old-aged person, you can’t say no to them, especially Custards and Ice creams, perfect dairy desserts. Both are stapled dessert items that easily beat the summer heat.


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Nothing can beat the delicious and refreshing taste of these two cold, creamy desserts; it is just unimaginable. But people often confuse these two treats when the custard is frozen.

Although milk, cream, and sugar are the main primary and same three-ingredient from which these two yummy desserts, i.e. Custard and Ice cream, are made.

But the creamy texture of the Custard is the main factor that creates a distinction point that basically comes through egg yolk and overrun activity of the Ice cream.

Key Takeaways

  1. Custard is a dessert made from milk, eggs, sugar, and flavorings cooked and then chilled.
  2. Ice cream is a dessert made from milk, cream, sugar, and flavorings that is churned and then frozen.
  3. Custard is typically thicker and creamier than ice cream and is often served in individual portions. Ice cream is usually sold in larger containers.

Custard vs Ice Cream

The difference between custard and ice cream is that Custard is rich, thick, and creamy sweet that is made from milk, cream, sugar, and egg yolks. People add flavourings such as vanilla, nutmeg, etc., to give more taste to custard. Ice cream is also made from milk, cream, and sugar, where milk can be condensed, evaporated, concentrated, skimmed, sweetened, buttermilk, etc., but milk fat should be less than 10%.

Custard vs Ice Cream

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Ice cream is made by whipping all the items together, which adds air, which is called an overrun.


Comparison Table

Parameter of ComparisonCustardIce Cream
DefinitionCustard is a low-simmered-cooked sweet food item made up of milk, cream, and egg yolk. It can be served hot as well as cold with fruits or dry fruits.Ice Cream is a heavily whipped sweet made from cream, milk, sugar or sweetener with fruits or dry fruits, including artificial flavours.
Key IngredientsEgg Yolk, Milk or Cream, Sugar or HoneySugar, Milk or Cream
Milk FatNo restriction.Less than 10%.
Can Be ServedGenerally Cold at 18°F temperature, but many like to eat it hot as well.At 10°F of temperature.
ConsistencyThick Liquid.Dense and Solid Frozen.
Protein ContentHigh because of egg yolk.Little, because of milk.
Method of CookingCooked on gas on simmer gas or double-boiler.In Ice-cream maker.
Saturated FatLowHigh
Calorie ContentLowHigh
Artificial FlavorNo to Little, mostly custard is natural.Artificial flavours are used in ice creams.


What is Custard?

Custard is a kind of dessert that is thick, rich, and creamy. The primary constituent used is milk or cream, sugar, and egg yolks. It is cooked on a low-simmered flame and then cooled down before serving but many also like to have it as hot.

Egg yolk is the main ingredient in custard that is responsible for giving it a thickened and creamy nature. The protein ratio in custard is also high due to egg yolk, but it’s a calorie, and saturated fat content is shallow.

Custard is prepared by cooking the milk and cream together, and then egg yolk is added slowly so that it gets mixed well without any lumps.

There is a restriction of egg yolk percentage, which is 1.4% means egg yolk needs to be only 1.4% in the total content of the custard.

It has its natural flavour, and people don’t add additives to it when cooked at home, but yes, it uses fresh fruits and dry fruits. The dry fruits add more taste to the custard.

Custard from the market does contain different flavourings, such as vanilla, nutmeg, etc., to give more punch to it.


What is Ice Cream?

Ice Cream is a heavily whipped sweet that is made from made up of cream, milk, sugar or sweetener. Milk can be condensed, evaporated, concentrated, skimmed, sweetened, buttermilk, etc., but milk fat should be less than 10%.

Ice cream is made by whipping all the items together, which adds air, which is called an overrun. There can be fruits or dry fruits with artificial flavours, but nowadays, ice creams are made from all-natural ingredients without any artificial additives.

Whipping adds air to ice cream, because of which it is restricted to 4.5 lbs per gallon so that manufacturers don’t just sell air to you in your ice cream.

No egg yolk is used in ice cream, which has a lower protein ratio but more calories per serving.

Vanilla, chocolate, butterscotch, and strawberry are popular artificial flavours used across the globe. It is served at 10°F of temperature.

ice cream 1

Main Differences Between Custard and Ice Cream

Everyone is born with a sweet tooth, and Custard and Ice Cream are the first and favourite dessert a choice on hot summer days. To summarize, the main difference between Custard and Ice Cream is,

  1. Custard is cooked and then cooled down before serving, whereas Ice Cream is a frozen dessert prepared in an ice cream maker and served as is.
  2. Custard may or may not contain artificial additives for flavours, but Ice Cream mainly contains artificial additives.
  3. Egg yolk is used in custard, milk, cream, and sugar, whereas Ice Cream is made with milk, cream, and sugar with artificial flavours, but no egg yolk is used.
  4. Custard can be served hot, whereas Ice cream is always served frozen.
  5. The protein ratio is high in custard due to egg yolk, whereas the protein ratio is lower in Ice Cream.
  6. In custard, Saturated Fat and calorie content are low, whereas it is high in Ice cream.
Difference Between Custard and Ice Cream
  1. https://krishikosh.egranth.ac.in/handle/1/5810091346
  2. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-0-387-77408-4_10
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