One of the many fun things about eating ice cream is having so many flavors to choose from. You’ve got the classics like vanilla and chocolate, along with innovative flavors like salted caramel and foie gras.

Food52‘s recipe-less ice cream cake assembly guide allows you to customize your cake’s flavor layers and fillings. There isn’t a ready list of ingredients, either—in other words, it’s time to get really creative and start playing with dessert.

Personally, we’d make sure there was a healthy portion of salted caramel ice cream and brownies in our cake.

Recipe-Less, Buttery Ice Cream Cake


1. Select your flavors and fillings of choice; keep in mind that the more flavors you use, the taller the cake will be. Hot fudge, cookie crumbs—really anything can go in between the ice cream layers.

2. The cake shape will vary depending on the dish you use—try using a springform pan or a pie dish. If you’ll be frosting your cake, use a springform. When using springform, place a parchment round on the bottom of the pan. If you’re using a pie plate, thinly coat the bottom of the pan with butter.

To make your crust, crush 1 to 1½ packs of chocolate wafer cookies (or another cookie of your choice—thin mints, maybe?) into crumbs and mix with a few tablespoons melted butter. Press down lightly along the bottom of the pan (an inch or so); you can even pack it down with the bottom of a measuring cup. Freeze for at least an hour. Save some un-buttered crumbs for your filling!

For an alternative crust, combine equal parts flour and brown sugar with five times that amount of crumbs and melted butter — you’ll want about 2 cups of dry ingredients for each stick of butter. Bake it in a low oven for a few minutes, then evenly add to the bottom of the pan and freeze.

3. Remove one pint of ice cream from the freezer and let it sit until it’s soft enough to stir, about 30 minutes. If you like, stir chocolate chips or chopped candy into the ice cream. Spread it evenly on top of the crust, then freeze for an hour.

4. Add a dividing layer. Use your extra cookie crumbs here; if you want to use hot fudge, melt it then cool it to room temperature before spreading over ice cream. (If you’re using both hot fudge and cookie crumbs, layer on the fudge first; it’s easier that way). Peanut butter, marshmallow fluff, and caramel are good options, too—be careful with caramel, though, as it will harden. Freeze for another hour.

5. Take out another pint of ice cream to thaw, then spread it evenly as you did with the previous layers. Freeze it for another hour. Continue to layer on more ice cream, or top your final layer with whipped cream or buttercream, then freeze again.

This article and recipe originally appeared on Food52