Raise your hand if, without fail, you chose the strawberry shortcake ice cream option every time the ice cream truck rolled around your neighborhood? Same here. That first bite into the strawberry ice cream smothered in crumbled cake coating just tasted like summer. The Southern Living Test Kitchen was so inspired by those fruity desserts that we developed our own version of these anytime sweet treats. Our ingredient list is quite simple (shortbread cookies, butter, vanilla ice cream, strawberry ice cream, freeze dried strawberries), and makes sixteen delicious Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream Bars. These creamy, berry treats are perfect for backyard cookouts, family reunions, or an unexpected Fourth of July surprise for kids – and those kids at heart.
- 2 (5.3-oz.) pkg. pure butter shortbread cookies (such as Walker’s)
- 1/4 cup salted butter, melted
- 1 pt. vanilla ice cream
- 1 pt. strawberry ice cream
- 1/2 ounce (about 3/4 cup) freeze-dried strawberries (from 1 [1-oz.] pkg.)
- Step 1
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9-inch square metal baking dish with 2 sheets of parchment paper, allowing a 2-inch overhang on all sides of dish.
- Step 2
Set aside 4 of the cookies. Place remaining cookies in a food processor; process until very finely crumbled, about 30 seconds. Transfer crumbs to a medium bowl; stir in melted butter until mixture resembles coarse sand. Press mixture evenly into bottom of prepared baking dish. Bake in preheated oven until crust is just set, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Transfer to a wire rack, and let cool completely, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, remove vanilla ice cream from freezer, and let soften at room temperature about 15 minutes.
- Step 3
Spread softened vanilla ice cream in an even layer on cooled crust. Transfer to freezer; freeze until ice cream is just set, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, remove strawberry ice cream from freezer, and let soften at room temperature about 15 minutes.
- Step 4
Remove baking dish from freezer. Spread softened strawberry ice cream in an even layer on vanilla ice cream layer.
- Step 5
Roughly chop reserved 4 cookies; sprinkle evenly over strawberry ice cream layer. Roughly chop freeze-dried strawberries; sprinkle evenly over cookie crumble layer. Transfer to freezer; freeze until solid, about 8 hours.
- Step 6
Remove baking dish from freezer. Using parchment paper overhang as handles, lift ice cream mixture from baking dish; transfer to a cutting board. Cut into 16 bars.