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Best Ever Ice Cream is Butter Brickle!

Butter Brickle Ice Cream

by Barbara Kiebel on August 27, 2012

Butter Brickle ice cream. This is it. Well, it may not actually be IT but it has brought back a lifetime of childhood memories and so it must be close. I’ve never seen it on grocer’s shelves (which is a big mistake) and yet I’ve never quite let go of how much I loved that delectable treat. Buttery toffee flavored ice cream with toffee bits? It’s not just an ice cream, it’s a journey through my childhood.

From the time I entered kindergarten at the age of four until we moved to a bigger home more suited for the size of our family (5 kids) when I was ten, we lived on St. Madelaine St. in Florissant, MO, a suburb of St. Louis. All of the streets in that neighborhood had Catholic names and both the Catholic church and school were within walking distance of our home. Did that have anything to do with the number of kids on our street? I don’t know but I have idyllic memories of those times; when walking outside meant finding a playmate and summer days meant trips to the community pool, playing ‘King of the Hill’ during the day and flashlight tag at night. I had a brother less than a year older than I was and another 2 years younger and I did what they did so I guess you could say I was a tomboy. One of my crowning achievements EVER was beating every single one of the boys down the hill in a road race (balloon tires and all) and I might have had reservations at first but wanting to keep up with the boys saw me swan dive from the high board and cannonball with the best of them.

But I was different from them in many ways. I loved to read and play with Barbie dolls (I was so afraid of tornadoes it was pathetic but I was a good mom…I didn’t race to the basement without those dolls!). I talked sooner than my older brother too. I remember the Sunday morning when I climbed out of my crib; grabbed our Sunday morning stollen from the kitchen table, climbed into his crib and we both finished it off but I blamed him. Oops.

Quite the trek for kids but it never seemed long!

Still, one of the summer memories that is most ingrained in me were the trips to Bergen’s Dairy on Florissant Road. I actually took a gamble they might be there but no; seems they’re long gone. Still that trip remains so familiar in my memory that I was able to recreate it with the magic of Google maps! A nice little trek for little kids…shows we worked for our ice cream! I don’t recall that I ever walked into Bergen’s and ordered anything but Butter Brickle ice cream. Oh, I recall perusing that board every single time but nothing ever held the same appeal and as evidence of true love; nothing ever has. Sadly it is unrequited love. Where has all the Butter Brickle ice cream gone? Really; why isn’t every dairy making it even if just for me?!!

I’ve found it in two local spots, neither close enough to walk to and sometimes an urge for an ice cream cone should not constitute having to make a 40 minute round trip. Maybe I wanted it all; the sense of family around me, the luxury of a warm summer night and walking lazily home, licking that amazing cone while fireflies fluttered all around us. A time when my world was at peace and seemed almost perfect.

Well, I’m grown up now…that sense of perfection is long gone and now we look for those moments of perfection to punctuate our hectic days. I thought I had found mine. One of those local shops actually agreed to provide me with their recipe and I was as excited as that schoolgirl from long ago. Until…they waffled. They thought better of it. They changed their mind. I don’t know about you but that set me on fire to make it MYSELF and I have to tell you…this is good, really, really good and in my quest to get it made I discovered some things I did not know.

Butter Brickle was the registered trademark of a toffee ice cream flavoring and of a toffee-centered chocolate-covered candy bar similar to the Heath bar. The flavor and the candy were produced by the Fenn Bros. Ice Cream and Candy CO from Sioux Falls South Dakota. The ice cream was introduced to the world back in the 1920′s at the Blackstone Hotel in Omaha, NE. When the company was liquidated in the 1970′s the trademark and formula were sold to the makers of the Heath Bar whose assets were acquired by The Hershey Company in 1996. If you look closely you’ll see that the packaging on the Heath English Toffee Bits still includes a reference to this history by referring to the content as ‘Bits ‘O Brickle Toffee Bits’. I’ve seen recipes suggest using Skor candy bits covered in chocolate and I’m sure that must taste just fine but it is so not MY Butter Brickle!

I had searched for a recipe before but several were egg based and MY ice cream surely was not. One recipe that I saw repeated over and over in my Internet search called for ‘butter flavoring’ and that just seemed wrong so I took my own path. Wanting the ice cream to have a rich toffee/buttery flavor, I made a small batch of a butterscotch sauce that I cooked down until thick and brown which I then added to the ice cream base to intensify that toffee flavor profile. I had considered making my own toffee and breaking it into bits but stopped myself for a couple of reasons. First, breaking up homemade toffee into little bits seemed a disaster waiting to happen; I imagined toffee dust would ensue more than little toffee pieces. Second; without that effort at homemade candy in the mix, the ice cream was significantly easier to make and really, how much more authentic could you get then by adding the original product? This is decadent; exactly how I remember it. I’m in love.

Butter Brickle Ice Cream

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 7 minutes

Butter Brickle Ice Cream

A rich butter toffee flavored ice cream with toffee bits.

Ingredients

    Butter Toffee Sauce:
  • 1 Tbsp salted butter
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Butter Brickle Ice Cream:
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4 Tbsp toffee sauce
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup Heath toffee bits
  • Dash of salt
  • Additional bits for garnish if desired

Preparation

    To Make the Butter Toffee Sauce:
  1. Put the butter, brown sugar, cream and salt in a medium saucepan and stir until the butter melts.
  2. Simmer over medium low heat without stirring for three minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
  4. Allow to cool while you make the ice cream base.
  5. To Make the Ice Cream:
  6. Warm the butter, brown sugar and half and half over medium until the butter and sugar have melted. Add the sauce and vanilla, still until thoroughly mixed and chill for a minimum of 4 hours; preferably overnight.
  7. Add the heavy cream and process the mixture in an ice cream machine.
  8. Add the toffee bits at the end of processing just to mix them in.
  9. Ripen in a container for a minimum of four hours before serving.

Notes

While this ice cream did freeze, it was never going to get as hard as some I've made but that bit of melting seemed to make it even more accurate...I also remember licking those dribbles that would find their ways down my forearm!

http://www.creative-culinary.com/butter-brickle-ice-cream-2/

Thanks for visiting...I would love to hear from you!

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{ 68 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Becca from ItsYummi! April 5, 2014 at 7:01 am

This sounds FABULOUS, Barb! I can’t wait until the warm weather arrives so I can take my ice cream maker for a spin :)
Becca from ItsYummi! Most Recent Post: Shredded Potato Nests with Spicy Aioli {Brunch Recipe}

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2 Creative Culinary April 5, 2014 at 10:06 am

For me I not only love the taste Becca but it’s intertwined with such great memories. Why it’s my best ever!

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3 Julie December 28, 2013 at 7:22 am

What exactly is “half and half”?

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4 Nadia September 12, 2013 at 10:54 am

I’ve made this ice cream a few times — it’s definitely my favorite — sometimes I add butterscotch syrup (couple tbsp) — this is delish, too. YUMMY thanks for sharing this one. I think it’s even better than store-bought brands. Plus I know EXACTLY what’s in it.

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5 Creative Culinary September 12, 2013 at 2:42 pm

LOVE hearing someone loves it as much as I do…YEAH!!

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6 Cheryl July 22, 2013 at 7:51 pm

My late Uncle Ed used to give us butter brickle when I was a kid and we’d go to visit him on the Oregon coast. I now live overseas, and the last time I came home to Portland, OR I looked for it, to no avail. I found butter pecan all OVER the place, and a disappointingly close butter toffee, but no butter brickle. Now I’m living in Paraguay, and I brought some “Bits o’Brickle” back with me, and I just finished making the base. Can’t wait for it to chill down and freeze it! The butter toffee sauce will also become a staple for me in the future… I enjoyed licking the pan once I had the 4Tbsp. of sauce I needed for the recipe! Thanks for sharing!

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7 Creative Culinary July 23, 2013 at 12:04 pm

I hope you like it Cheryl; I was sort of surprised that NO ONE had a recipe out there so this was most definitely seat of my pants winging it. Guess that’s called ‘recipe development’ huh? :)

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8 Charles Cooter July 14, 2013 at 10:03 pm

My Mom got me hooked on BB when I was 5 years old and have always had some in the freezer. It disappeared for awhile when I was in my 30′s. I have found out that you can still get it from Bluebunny.com. My Mom will enjoy it more if it is homemade!

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9 Creative Culinary July 14, 2013 at 10:40 pm

I can get it from some local shops but I didn’t know Blue Bunny made it…still, homemade is the BEST. Hope Mom enjoys it!

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10 C L July 14, 2013 at 8:39 am

I thought I was the only one who had a love affair with Butter Brickle ice cream! Thank you for posting your recipe. When I was a youngster and had a choice between chocolate ice cream or butter brickle, brickle always won! :)

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11 Creative Culinary July 14, 2013 at 2:08 pm

For me there was never a choice…it was BB or nothing at all. How it ever disappeared is beyond me! :)

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12 Karen King June 29, 2013 at 11:10 am

Butter brickle ice cream used to be my favorite, but alas, I cannot find it either. You have a wonderful story – I enjoyed reading it. Will be trying your recipe as soon as I eat the ice cream I already have. Thanks for sharing!

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13 Creative Culinary June 29, 2013 at 3:49 pm

I know SO many people that love it; how could it not be everywhere? I hope you enjoy it; I know we did…time to make some more!

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14 Paula June 22, 2013 at 10:34 am

I haven’t been able to find Butter Brickle ice cream since I was a young adult. Thanks for this great recipe. I can now enjoy one of my favorite treats.

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15 Creative Culinary June 22, 2013 at 11:54 am

Exactly how I felt Paula…it’s the best isn’t it?

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16 Ava C June 19, 2013 at 8:18 am

I have been missing this ice cream too, very glad I found this recipe!! I was wondering how much your recipe makes as my machine only makes 1 quart at a time. Thank you!

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17 russ jordan April 14, 2013 at 7:50 pm

hi there, I too have enjoyed butterbrickel icecream, I was wondering can iuse a gallon of my fav icecream and turn it into a buterbrickel, I recall seeing it somewhere but can’t recall. so was wanting to see what you tought. thanks Russ

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18 Creative Culinary April 14, 2013 at 8:15 pm

I couldn’t say Russ…I suppose if you wanted to soften some vanilla ice cream and then add the other components and re-freeze it, it would be close? Let me know if you try it.

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19 Pat Clarke December 2, 2012 at 11:52 am

My mother loves, loves, loves butter brickle. It is getting harder to find and usually only High’s convenience stores have it. I did a search and found your site and this recipe. I had to look all over for the “brickle” (even was going to bang up Werther’s or melt the chocolate off of Heath bars!) until I searched online again and found them at Wegmans. I had to ask someone to help me because I did not see them as they were almost gone and way back out of view. After all of that, I made this ice cream for my mother for Thanksgiving and she loved it!! So did my sister and brother. I have never actually liked it, so I was pleasantly surprised when they all agreed that it was better than the High’s version. She even managed to get it home in good shape after a 3 hour drive. Thank you so much for this recipe and for sharing a wonderful story about it. I never knew what the “brickle” was until I read this. I wanted you to know how much this meant for me to be able to do for my mother and to have her love it so much!! I have bookmarked your blog and hope to find more recipes that will continue to make memories.

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20 Creative Culinary December 2, 2012 at 12:09 pm

This might be the first comment I’ve ever had that made me both laugh and cry. Chuckled a bit at your quest for the ‘brickle’ but teared up at how much this meant to you and your mom…for that reason alone I’m glad I decided to just go for it…well, that and the fact that I love it so much too. I often call neighbors to come share something I’ve made that I love. I called no one. I was quiet as a mouse with my spoon and bowl of ice cream.

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21 Julie November 2, 2012 at 8:21 am

How much salt? Step 1 put butter, brown sugar, cream, and salt into saucepan… I used a pinch of salt since I did not know. It seemed to turn out pretty good. Is it light brown sugar for the sauce and dark brown for the other? It seemed like the ice cream I made was a little darker than your picture so not sure if you used dark or light brown sugar in the base of the ice cream.

It seemed to taste very good but I am giving it as a gift so I wanted to give them the recipe with the ice cream.

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22 Creative Culinary November 2, 2012 at 8:48 am

Oops…did I really forget salt? I was just telling my daughter last night that the hardest part of blogging recipes for me is to remember what I put into them; so many years of just cooking by taste; a pinch of this and a dash of that; now I try to take notes but this isn’t the first time I’ve messed up! It’s just a dash of salt…I’ve revised the online recipe to include that information…thank you!

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23 Hannah September 10, 2012 at 6:08 pm

Ohhh, I do love Butter Brickle ice cream! What a terrific story – great to see your ice cream journey, too. :)
Hannah Most Recent Post: Back to School with Jam Thumbprint Cookies

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24 Creative Culinary September 11, 2012 at 9:08 am

It was so good…really decadent but worth every single calorie.

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25 Delishhh September 6, 2012 at 5:02 pm

This is on my to do list and i shared this recipe on my newsletter this month – http://us5.campaign-archive2.com/?u=9bc1b5f1c2c1cb8a98f1f3ad5&id=61665afde9&e=5bdcd0f2e5
Delishhh Most Recent Post: Minty Asian Coleslaw

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26 Creative Culinary September 7, 2012 at 10:35 am

Thanks for sharing…it is SUCH a good ice cream. Delish even. :)

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27 EA-the spicy rd August 29, 2012 at 9:52 am

Love your childhood story, and love this ice cream! I am always on a search for English Toffee ice cream, my childhood favorite, but your post brought back wonderful memories for me too. I can’t believe I had forgotten all about Butter Brickle. Yum! Pinning this now. Yum, yum,yum!

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28 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:49 pm

I’ve heard that so much…how many people forgot about it. Hard to understand but think we bloggers could bring about a resurgence!

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29 Diane Read August 29, 2012 at 4:40 am

Wow some great recipes and I love the photos of the finished dish, it’s always reasuring to know what it should look like.. :))

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30 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:49 pm

Thank you Diane…and glad you stopped by. I never do the step by step business but yes, hoping that a decent photo of the results is helpful to readers.

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31 thelittleloaf August 29, 2012 at 4:38 am

I’d never heard of butter brickle until I read this post but it sounds divine! As does the ice cream :-)
thelittleloaf Most Recent Post: Salty Bourbon Pecan Squares

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32 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:48 pm

It’s really just toffee in little pieces and it does make for an amazing ice cream!

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33 Ken│hungry rabbit August 29, 2012 at 4:35 am

Great story and what a delightful old fashioned flavor. Butter Pecan has always been a favorite and you don’t find it everywhere anymore. Now I can make this with an extra sprinkling of crunch candy.

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34 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:47 pm

There might be some old fashioned flavors I can live without but whoever decided ‘butter’ type ice creams were passe needs to wake up! Both are wonderful.

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35 Paula August 28, 2012 at 6:36 pm

I enjoyed reading every word of this post. You are such a lovely writer Barb and a pretty darn amazing ice cream maker too.
Paula Most Recent Post: Pistachio Butter Balls

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36 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:46 pm

You are too kind but I do love your support Paula. I’m gonna open an ice cream shop right next to my bar. :)

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37 Rachel @ Baked by Rachel August 28, 2012 at 7:56 am

It’s so fun to hear childhood stories and memories. Boy how times have changed! This ice cream sounds just lovely!
Rachel @ Baked by Rachel Most Recent Post: Cran-Raspberry Jam Filled Muffins

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38 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:46 pm

I know right…I mostly wondered how many kids would walk several blocks for an ice cream and not whine or want to bring their handheld video something? Too many I fear. :)

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39 Maureen | Orgasmic Chef August 27, 2012 at 9:23 pm

I love this story!!!

I also love butter brickle. No Heath chips here so I have to make my own butter toffee and than smash it with a rolling pin. The last ice cream I made I made macadamia toffee and the ice cream was to die for.

Now I want ice cream!
Maureen | Orgasmic Chef Most Recent Post: Jars, Bottles, Olives and More

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40 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:32 pm

So I’ve heard…I almost made the toffee too but wasn’t sure just how much smashing it would take without turning to powder; if you do it you MUST let me know!

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41 Marina@Picnic at Marina August 27, 2012 at 8:15 pm

This ice cream sure looks delicious. Thanks for the recipe! :)
Marina@Picnic at Marina Most Recent Post: Grilled, Breville, and Ariosto

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42 Margaret August 27, 2012 at 6:16 pm

Aren’t memories wonderful and when you make today as good as the memory it’s 10 times better. Great sounding ice cream.

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43 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:31 pm

Some of them are…this was certainly a special one.

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44 Amanda August 27, 2012 at 4:45 pm

My, this sure looks heavenly. I’ve never seen those toffee bits here, but I’m sure I can improvise.
Amanda Most Recent Post: Porchetta Party at Oliver’s Taranga

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45 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:30 pm

If they were there, they might be by the chocolate chips? If not…smash up a toffee bar to bits!

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46 Nancy@acommunaltable August 27, 2012 at 1:02 pm

What a wonderful story Barb! I think every one of us has a story connected with childhood and ice cream. Mine is long walks around Balboa Island licking a cone from the Jolly Roger… (sigh). As for your recipe, I think you nailed it… and you are right – American ice cream typically did not have eggs in it – as I recall, the ones that did were called “frozen custard” versus “ice cream”!
Now, that bag of Heath butter toffee bits is calling to me from the pantry…. you know, you REALLY are not good for my productivity :-)!!!!
Nancy@acommunaltable Most Recent Post: Hatch Chile Margarita

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47 Creative Culinary September 3, 2012 at 3:30 pm

I always think of custard as the ice cream with eggs in it and then it’s also softer maybe. Maybe I don’t know because I’ve never made it? Probably. This is decadent; it will require a lot of sorbets in between!

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48 Christine August 27, 2012 at 9:49 am

This has been my favorite ice cream since I was a little girl growing up in the 50s. I am also surprised that it has faded away and has not been resurrected. It is a marvelous ice cream.

I have seen it on a few ice cream shelves, and I did buy a carton of it once, but the makers got it all wrong. It was too creamy, not a bright enough flavor and had almost no brickle. Major fail in my eyes.

I will have to try this in a month or so, to see if it matches up to my taste memory. Can’t do it before, as I am having major surgery this week.. But as soon as I am mobile enough, you can bet I will be making this!!

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49 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:29 pm

Well the one thing I did was to put in a LOT of those brickle pieces…I always wished for more so made my own dream come true. :)

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50 hima August 27, 2012 at 9:23 am

oh. my. word. i love that the butter toffee sauce requires salted butter.

feel free to call me the next time you make this. because i will be right over. :)
hima Most Recent Post: Pins of the week: Tomato Fight

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51 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:30 pm

Yes, I thought that was a small concession to today’s salted craze! Next up I’m actually going to see what I can do to lighten it up a bit. It is so good but sort of a once in a blue moon treat. I would prefer once a month. :)

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52 Jayne August 27, 2012 at 7:44 am

This sounds wonderful! I’ve never had that flavor, but I know I’d love it! Loved your childhood memories!

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53 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:44 pm

I only wish I had a photo. One of my sisters has deemed herself the owner of all things familial including family photos. It was like I never existed! :)

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54 Holly August 27, 2012 at 7:31 am

Oh yum! This is a wonderful post with stories from your childhood taking me back to thoughts of my own. In our house the ice cream flavor would have been mint chocolate chip– my mother’s favorite. I always preferred plain vanilla or maybe vanilla with something mixed in like chocolate chips. This butter brickle sounds and looks heavenly. Can’t wait to try it at my house!
Holly Most Recent Post: Double Brownie Blast Ice Cream

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55 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:45 pm

It was certainly a walk down memory lane Holly I can’t deny and fun doing it too.

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56 Jen @ Savory Simple August 27, 2012 at 7:16 am

This ice cream looks incredible!
Jen @ Savory Simple Most Recent Post: Sweet and Spicy Curried Popcorn

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57 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:46 pm

It is…I mean was. I need more.

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58 Kate | Food Babbles August 27, 2012 at 7:12 am

Oh Barb, all this ice cream is making my mouth water more and more with each post but this one, this one in particular has my swooning and reliving my own childhood memories. I hadn’t thought about it in a million years but my grandmother always had butter brickle ice cream in her freezer when we were small children!! I completely forgot about that until I read your post. And why is it that no one makes that flavor anymore?!? It was my favorite as a child. Thank you for providing me a recipe to make my very own and for helping me remember what I’ve been missing all these years.
Kate | Food Babbles Most Recent Post: Pate A Choux Swans with Vanilla Creme Patisserie ~ Daring Bakers’

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59 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:46 pm

You make me feel much less ancient that you have actually had it too. Whoo hoo!! Really why doesn’t someone make it…they would make a killing!

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60 Lana @ Never Enough Thyme August 27, 2012 at 7:07 am

Would you believe I’ve never had butter brickle ice cream? Never. But that’s about to change! Can’t wait to try this rich, creamy, toffee delight. Yum.
Lana @ Never Enough Thyme Most Recent Post: Back to School Recipe Roundup

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61 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:47 pm

That needs to change. It’s like toffee ice cream with toffee pieces. How could that not be good huh?

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62 Karen Harris August 27, 2012 at 6:52 am

So glad you finally found your perfect recipe. Sometimes a flavor or smell can just take us right back to our childhood. I love the fact that you purchased your mix-in. Making ice cream is enough of a triumph. Heath bars take me back to MY childhood. I love them.
Karen Harris Most Recent Post: Summer’s Bounty: Palisade Peach Fool

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63 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:49 pm

I have always said that I’m sure my cavity was courtesy of a Heath Bar. Or make this ice cream…or both. I share the love.

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64 Brian @ A Thought For Food August 27, 2012 at 6:46 am

YES! The ice cream I’ve been waiting for! I can only imagine how rich and delightful it is.
Brian @ A Thought For Food Most Recent Post: Braised Bok Choy + Hakurai Turnips

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65 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:49 pm

It is the epitome of Mmm Mmm good. That is all. :)

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66 Barbara @ Barbara Bakes August 27, 2012 at 6:42 am

This sounds amazing!
Barbara @ Barbara Bakes Most Recent Post: Cream Puff Swans

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67 Suzanne August 27, 2012 at 6:05 am

I love butter brickle ice cream and you are so right, never see it in the stores. I think the closest I have found is Haagan Daz pralines and cream. Going to make this because lately I haven’t even seen pralines and cream in the grocery store. Thanks for recipe.
Suzanne Most Recent Post: Sticky Glazed Baby Back Ribs

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68 Creative Culinary August 27, 2012 at 12:50 pm

I like it better. Just toffee, no pecans…yep, the BEST!

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