Fresh strawberries are one of our very favorite things. And when we find them in abundance at the market, we love to turn them into simple, yet flavorful desserts like this Strawberry Italian Ice. It’s incredibly quick to make, features only a handful of simple ingredients, and tastes so fresh—and refreshing—that it might just be a perfect summer dessert.
Growing up in South Jersey, I ate a lot of Italian ice (often called water ice). It’s a staple in that region (and in Philly, where I spent a lot of time with my grandparents), so even the idea of it brings back memories of scraping sweet icy treats with little wooden spoons. This homemade version tastes more like real fruit than the lemon and cherry flavors of my youth, but it’s no less enjoyable.
I started with the best tasting strawberries that you can find since they are the primary ingredient in this recipe and then simplified the original recipe—in an effort to rely less on sugar for the sweetness and to make it slightly less complicated. I simply used the berries and the lemon juice (which adds a nice note of tartness), and added about 2 tablespoons of honey. (You might need a bit more if your berries aren’t super sweet on their own.) I added these ingredients to a blender and continued with the recipe as directed.
Side note: If you think your kids would prefer this mixture as freezer pops, go ahead and do that! The mixture would be wonderful frozen that way.
We served up this summer dessert after dinner one night and all loved how vibrant the flavors were. I also love how the texture was so smooth and rich, despite not containing any dairy. I can’t wait to make this again (and again!) throughout the warm summer months to help us stay cool—and really happy.
Get the original recipe for Strawberry Italian Ice here.