There are few foods that are more quintessentially SUMMER than a classic ice cream sandwich. Eating one always makes me feel like I’m a kid on summer vacation, and that’s a feeling we could all use a little bit more of, don’t you think? They are one of my favorite desserts to make when I have friends over for a dinner party in the summer, for two reasons. First, you can make them days in advance, and more importantly, everyone completely loses their minds when you bring out a platter of giant ice cream sandwiches after dinner. Try it, you’ll see what I mean. I’m all for blueberry crumble or peach pie, but there is no greater crowd pleaser than ice cream sandwiches.
Now, making ice cream sandwiches is a project no matter how you spin it, but this sheet pan method takes a little bit of time and mess out of the process. Instead of having to assemble each individual sandwich, all you have to do is make one giant ice cream sandwich, pop it in the freezer, then trim the edges and cut it into individual sandwiches. Cutting the sandwiches into squares after they’ve hardened in the freezer makes them look incredibly professional, with crisp, clean edges and no melty wreckage from an ice cream sandwich assembly line.
The cookie dough in this recipe is similar to a traditional Tollhouse style recipe, but with a few changes for optimal ice cream sandwich texture. I’ve added cornstarch, which helps the cookies stay really soft and tender, and an extra egg yolk, which makes them incredibly moist. The absolutely crucial, critical, essential, very important part (not taking any chances here) of this recipe is to not over-bake the cookie. Remember this line when you are checking on your cookie: when in doubt, take it out. The cookie will continue to firm up as it cools, and then even more when you freeze it, so you really want to make sure you take it out of the oven when it’s still slightly under-baked. The ice cream sandwiches won’t be ruined if you over-bake the cookie, but they will be harder to cut and won’t have the same soft texture.
Let’s talk sprinkles – one of my all-time favorite subjects. These ice cream sandwiches don’t need anything, and if you’re a classicist (hi Mom) you can serve these plain Jane and they will be absolutely delicious. But there’s something about rainbow sprinkles I just can’t resist. The colors, the crunch, the nostalgia! I also like to do some with mini chocolate chips for those who prefer a more classic Chipwich vibe. There’s not a bad option all around.
Make these for the 4th of July this year and I promise, they will become an instant tradition. You might even be asked to make these ice cream sandwiches every 4th of July for the rest of your life, or possibly more often than that. In other words, make this recipe at your own risk. Happy 4th of July!!
Sheet Pan Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches
- 2½ sticks (10 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for greasing the pan
- 1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs + 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chunks or chips (about 12 ounces)
- 1 (1.5 quart) container vanilla ice cream (see note)
- Sprinkles and mini chocolate chips, for decorating
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 18x13x1-inch sheet pan with butter or nonstick-spray and line with parchment paper, leaving an inch or two of overhang on two sides on the pan.
- In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and both sugars on medium-high speed for 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. On low speed, add the eggs and egg yolk one at a time, and then the vanilla. Mix until well combined.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low, gradually add the dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated, scraping the sides of the bowl with a spatula if necessary. Add the chocolate chips and mix until just combined.
- Dollop the cookie dough onto the prepared sheet pan in big spoonfuls, covering as much of the pan as possible. Holding the parchment paper with one hand, and a spatula with the other, spread the dough into an even layer that covers the entire surface of the pan.
- Bake for 13 to 16 minutes, until lightly golden brown and still soft to the touch. The cookie should seem slightly under-baked. Cool completely in the pan.
- Run a paring knife around the edges of the pan, then lift the parchment paper and carefully move the giant cookie onto a large cutting board. Cut the cookie in half crosswise to form two equal-sized rectangles. Chill the cookie halves until firm, at least 30 minutes.
- When ready to assemble the sandwiches, remove the ice cream from the freezer and let it sit at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes, until slightly softened.
- Place one half of the cookie, bottom-side up, on a cutting board or flat platter that fits in your freezer. Working quickly, spoon large scoops of ice cream onto the cookie. Spread into an even layer, making sure the ice cream reaches the edges of the cookie. Freeze for at least 30 minutes, then place the other cookie half, right side up, on top to form a giant sandwich. Press lightly, then freeze until firm, at least 3 hours or overnight.
- Using a sharp knife, carefully trim about ¼-inch from each edge of the giant cookie sandwich, then cut it into 12 individual sandwiches. Place mini chocolate chips and sprinkles on small plates and press each side of the sandwiches into so the toppings adhere. Using a pastry brush, brush the excess sprinkles or chocolate chips from the sides of the sandwiches so only the ice cream is covered.
- Freeze sandwiches until firm, then serve or wrap individually with wax paper and store for up to 2 weeks in the freezer.Note: Skip the super premium ice cream brands for this recipe. I’ve found it works best with grocery store brands like Turkey Hill, Breyers, or Edy's.Copyright 2019, Lidey Heuck, All Rights Reserved
Hi there! Just made these for my sons 11th birthday today: doubled the recipe, under baked the cookies, extra ice cream, Loads of sprinkles —> Fantastic! Sheet pan cookies, absolutely brilliant. Thank you for this!
Love this receipe! Delicious and so fun. I found that using Ice ream that comes in a paper carton, makes it way to Alice into four even pieces and place on the half cookie, it is super fast that way.
These are a great idea and my friends loved them! I few edits/tips for next time…
1) spray the pan with cooking spray – it helps the parchment to stick and make it easier to spread!
3) let setup/refreeze longer. I was rushing a bit and the 3 hours wasn’t long enough because started melting when I was cutting
2) going to cut into thirds before refreezing – it cook a while to cut them all so the ice cream started to melt and made the bottoms soggy – but still yummy!
I definitely recommend!!
I only had two 9 x 13 pans so made this recipe in those. I didn’t have enough dough. I had trouble spread the dough and trouble spreading the ice cream. I’m going to try again!
My family is OBSESSED with these! I’ve made them about 3 times and last time a double batch. My 26 year old son requested them for his Aug birthday dessert. I have had success cutting in half and then freezing for a bit before spreading the ice cream. Cutting and dipping in sprinkles and wrapping is challenging because you have to work quickly but these are worth it😋 They taste great even after 2 weeks in the freezer and it is SO nice to have a dessert ready ahead of time! Thanks Lidey! It’s a keeper!
Hi Cathy! Thanks for your comment! I’m so glad your family is enjoying these! And yes, it’s definitely not the easiest process but I love that it makes a bunch that you can keep in the freezer. I will have to try freezing the cookie sheets for a bit before spreading the ice cream – thats a great idea!
I found the hardest part was spreading the dough – as you mentioned. I didn’t check the notes, so it’s possible someone already said this. Ultimately, I ended up putting flour on my hands and just patting the the dough into the sheet pan – it took awhile and many applications of flour, but it was a little meditative and I didn’t get overly frustrated (!).
Hi Jessica! Yes that is definitely the trickiest part of this recipe – i’ve also had success wetting my hands (just a little) before patting the dough. But any way you slice it, it’s a little labor intensive. (But worth it IMO!!) 🙂
The recipe calls for 2 1/2 sticks of butter which is 18 ozs of butter. In parentheses it says 10 0ozs of butter. Can you tell me which measurement is correct?
Hi Maureen! Thanks for your comment. I just double checked with my food scale to be sure. One stick of butter weighs 4 ounces, so 2.5 sticks should come out to 10 ounces total. Let me know if I’m missing something here!
I was wondering if you think it would be ok to use a silpat in lieu of the parchment paper?
Hi Katrina, I like to use parchment paper because I find it makes it easier to lift the giant cookie out the sheet pan. That said, I don’t why see a Silpat wouldn’t work- just be careful when you remove the cookie from the pan!
What about adding oatmeal?…. thinking of the It’s it bars….
Yum! I bet oatmeal would be great in these!!! I would just be careful not to add too much ( or to reduce flour slightly) so the cookies don’t dry out!!
Hi Lidey ! My pan is 17.88 x 12.88 x 1 ( exterior). Interior is 16.5 x11.38 x 1. Are these pans too small ?
What is the interior measurement of your pan that you like to use ?
Looking forward to making theses for my grandchildren !
Hi there! Apologies for my late reply to your comment! The pan I use measures about 16.5 x 11.5 x 1 – sounds like the same pan you have !! I hope you enjoy the recipe!
My new go to summer dessert!
Look no further for the PERFECT ICE CREAMS SANDWICHES! Made these all summer long, so so good.
these are a delicious sweet treat. always bring back fond memories of Hot Pool
These are so damn good. Honestly. Can’t get enough of them.
Lidey, I just tried this recipe and the cookie is fabulous. To be honest they didn’t even make it to sandwiches.
My husband is a huge chocolate chip cookie fan and he loved these. I would like to make these as a drop cookie.
Do I need to make any adjustments to the recipe. Thanks again for this delicious recipe!
Made these last weekend to rave reviews! Followed the suggestions to run parchment up the sides of the pan, refrigerated cooled cookie, & put 1/2 sheet + ice cream into freezer before adding the top layer. I reserved a little of the ice cream and before I put the top cookie on I added the remaining softened ice cream on top of the frozen ice cream to get a perfect fit and refroze before cutting into individual sandwiches. SOOOO GOOD!
Well…………I made a double recipe and let the cookies cool per the recipe and then put both pans in the fridge overnight. The cookie sheets firmed up nicely and were very easy to handle and cut in half. For the ice cream………….I made a very rich vanilla ice cream using half/half, heavy cream, 8 egg yolks and a good splash of vanilla. Whoa!!!! These cookie sandwiches were the hit of the party (our monthly church fellowship) with ‘demands’ that I make them again next month.
FYI – Judy Farrell – I bought a couple of packs of dry ice for the cooler. I put the cut cookies into a ceramic baking dish and put the dish directly on top the of the dry ice. Problem solved – cookies remained very solid for 5-6 hours and I am sure would last longer if they had not all been eaten!!! Yummmmmmmmmm.
I made these and they were delicious, but i think the cookies on their own were even better than the sandwiches! this is going to be my new chocolate chip cookie recipe–baked in the sheet pan, removed from the oven early (!), and sliced with a pizza cutter–so gooey and delicious!
Yay! Thanks Raquel! So glad you enjoyed the recipe – I definitely ate a lot of cookies while working on the recipe and thought they were delish on their own, too!
Any tips or new version for non chocolate eaters? I know. Who doesn’t like chocolate?? I have one daughter who doesn’t.
After dolloping the raw dough all around the pan, I placed the whole pan in the frig for about 10 minutes and then used the butter wrappers to flatten the dough. It worked well.
what a great idea. i never thought of using a sheet pan. would it be ok if i make a vegan version of this and then give you credit? thanks! ps big fan of your work (and of course, ina’s!)
I made these for 4th of July and they were a huge hit! I doubled the recipe to make 2 full sheet pans which worked out great. I agree with the note saying to skip the premium ice cream. I did mostly hood ice cream, but also did a portion with Ben & Jerry’s and the Ben & Jerry’s were more difficult to eat. I would definitely make these again!
Hi Michelle! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! I also did it with two full sheet pans for lots of ice cream sandwiches over the 4th!
Thank you! Made these this weekend! They were a huge hit and so good. Reading your article before hand helped, to make sure I didn’t over bake the cookie. Very important to avoid cracking.
Happy to hear it!! Thanks for trying the recipe!!
I made these and they are a super hit! Here are a few tips that worked for me. 1st I doubled the batch so 1 full cookie sheet for top and bottom. I used a longer sheet of parchment and folded under the ends of the pan while spreading the cookie dough, that made the job a little easier. I froze the baked cookies a little before assembling to prevent breakage. Lastly I put the ice cream on top of the 1st cookie and froze it and then added the other cookie on top and froze again. This keeps the heavy top cookie from pushing out all of the softened ice cream.
Hi Amy! Thanks for these tips! Especially to freeze the first ice cream layer before adding the second cookie. I will add that to the recipe!
Can you substitute store bought cookie dough. And if so, how much would you need? Thanks!
I’m sure you could!! I haven’t tried this – will let you know if I do!
Just took the tray out of the oven…stand by!
Hi Lidey just curious before I begin baking the recipie does the batter only make one cookie sheet or not of them?
Hi Jeremiah, The recipe ends up making 12 large ice cream sandwiches. You cut the large sheet pan cookie in half to make the top and bottom pieces.
Nailed it! Mine look just like the picture. Did have a bit of a problem with the cookie cracking a bit, but once frozen who cares.
My cookie halves broke when I attempted to move them to a platter and then when I tried to top the first half with the second after I put the ice cream on. And when I say broke, I mean, there were *huge* cracks on the bottom and the top broke into four jagged pieces. ;-(
oh no!! I wonder if the cookies were slightly overbaked? It’s very important to underbake them so they are soft enough to be pliable without cracking!
Hi! Can wait to make these for the fourth! Silly question, but do you cover them when initially putting in the freezer?
Hi Maria! No need to the cover the cookie while it’s freezing! I’d only wrap afterwards if you are storing the sandwiches overnight before serving.
How far in advance can these be made?
I’ve made them up to a week in advance – individually wrapped well with foil in the freezer!
I can’t wait to make these! How do you measure the flour – and do you have weights for it? Thanks!
Hi Lidey, I have just made the ice cream sandwiches and my layer of ice cream is not as thick as yours, so I can’t really get the sprinkles to even stick to the sides. I wondered if I should try to defrost the cookie and attempt to ‘unstick’ to put more ice cream in the center? Any suggestions? Thanks so much!
Hi Beverly! You could try pressing some ice cream into the gaps where it isn’t thick enough if it’s just around the edges? Or if the whole layer isn’t thick enough, you could try defrosting just enough to separate the cookies and add more. Let me know how it goes!!
Do you have any favorite chocolates to use for baking?
For chocolate chips and chunks I usually use Nestle – nothing fancy! – but when I need to use a chocolate bar for baking, I use Guittard! I order bars online since it can be hard to find in stores!
For some reason mine were to buttery. Hope they get better once cooled. Maybe ill try l8 oz of bitter next time.
Hmm. Not sure why that happened. Were the cookies better once they cooled?
I used this dough to make chocolate chip lava cakes with a Lindt truffle in the middle. Delicious! They collapsed a bit in the middle as they cooled, but it was the perfect place for a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
YUM!! That sounds unbelievably delicious…
You can substitute the liquid from a can of garbanzo beans for eggs in baking. 3 tbs = 1 egg. You don’t need to whisk it up, just add it in. Look up all kinds of recipes for it, it’s called aquafaba. Have fun!
How far in advance can you make and assemble these for a party?
I’d say you can safely make them a week in advance!!
Can this recipe be used for drop cookies as well?
I haven’t actually made regular cookies with this recipe but I don’t see why couldn’t!
When my girls were pregnant they couldn’t have raw eggs, so I used flaxseed instead of raw eggs, nobody notice the difference, so I think when you bake it’s even better.
Try flaxseed or chia seed egg substitutes which work in cookie recipes – I’m also allergic to eggs and dairy but I’m definitely reworking a vegan version of these bad boys!
Let me know how it turns out!! A few people are asking for dairy-free/ vegan versions!
Thanks for sharing & since I live in Bermuda, it’s the perfect dessert for outdoor dinner party! May make them more adult with eliminating the chocolate chips, use Rum & Raisin ice cream & roll them in chopped nuts instead of sprinkles. ????
Yum! That sounds delicious! Let me know how they turn out!
can’t wait to try these. one question, may I substitute the eggs with applesauce? my granddaughter is highly allergic to eggs. thank you!
Hi Olga, I haven’t tried making these cookies with any substitutions for the eggs, so I defer to my more experienced vegan readers who have left a few comments! Sorry I can’t be more helpful!!
Put some dry ice in your cooler bottom and then the ice cream cookies on top – we camp all the time and dry ice is our lifesaver!!
Making these this weekend- so perfect for a party.
Hope you love them!!
Such a good idea! Going to try this soon.
Fabulous! Have you ever taken them to a potluck? Going to try packing them for a 4th of July concert but I’m afraid my cooler won’t prevent melting.
I haven’t unfortunately so I’m hesitant to say they won’t melt. Maybe with lots of ice and a cooler bag within the freezer?!