Cinnamon Gelato


I’ve been back from Italy for a whole week now, and I still can’t get the food we ate on that trip off my mind. There really is nothing like it. I’ve always been a sucker for good Italian food, so my expectations were obviously pretty high about eating in Italy. Unlike Paris where we left generally unimpressed with the cuisine, I’ve been scheming about ways to re-create some of the best dishes I had ever since getting home.

I had gelato every single day I was in Italy, and nothing was as amazing as the gelato alla cannella we had at Giolittis in Rome. Andy and I both were obsessed with it and had it every day we were there. It was oh so creamy, and was bursting with cinnamon flavor. I tried my hand at finding an at-home version, and I was SO happy with how this turned out. 


Even though I’ve had my KitchenAid Ice Cream attachment since our wedding in August, this was my first time using it. Wow…I thought my old one was great- but the texture of the ice cream churned from this baby was so creamy and almost custard-like. If you have a stand mixer and ever think you want to try homemade ice cream, I really recommend it. How would you guys feel about a whole month of Ice Creams this summer? ;)


I know that it isn’t quite ice cream season yet, but I couldn’t resist trying my hand at this flavor. It would be amazing this summer over a peach cobbler don’t you think? Or in the fall with apple pie? Or maybe like the Italians do, in a shot of espresso affogato style?

Here’s a pic of (a very overly excited) me outside Giolittis on our last day in Rome…I sure do dream about that place!


Cinnamon Gelato

Yield: 1 quart
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes


  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon


  1. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the milk and cream and cook, stirring occasionally so a skin doesn’t form, until the mixture comes to a light simmer with bubbles around the edges. (not a boil.)
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium heat-proof bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until smooth. Temper the egg yolks by slowly pouring in the milk in a steady stream , whisking continuously.
  3. Return the custard to the saucepan and place over low heat. Cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon. (When you run your finger across the back of the spoon it will leave a line.) Do not bring to a boil.
  4. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl. Let cool to room temperature, stirring every 5 minutes or so. (To hasten the cooling process, place the bowl of custard in an ice bath and stir until the custard has cooled.) Once completely cooled, gently stir in the cinnamon* and vanilla. Store in the fridge for 4 hours or overnight.
  5. When custard has chilled, pour the mixture into the container of an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to an airtight container to chill for at least 2 hours before serving.


*If you pour the cinnamon in all at once it may get clumpy and hard to stir. To avoid this, add it slowly and stir gently. Recipe adapted slightly from: The Ciao Bella Book of Gelato and Sorbetto

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 1 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Unsaturated Fat: 0g

Did you make this recipe?

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  1. told ya!!! im so happy you liked it girl! me and my hubs are the biggest foodies and we hunted down the best gelato in rome. we were asking cab drivers, locals, everyone to get the original, true flavor, old school gelato. isnt their whipped cream TO DIE FOR? and the pistaccio!? Lord almighty. Thank goodness our hotel was in Via Venetto which isnt far from Giolittis so we ate there every day.

    1. Totally agree. I love Ben & Jerry’s Oatmeal Cookie Dough Ice Cream – mostly because of the cinnamon ice cream base. I’ve only made vanilla ice cream with my Cuisinart ice cream maker but I’m up for this challenge!

  2. Your pictures make me want ice cream more than any picture before!!!! Seriously, you captured what I love about ice cream in some magical way. I may or may not be PMSing, but still…

  3. Yes to ice cream month! Though, your freezer and your workout schedule might suffer a bit. :) BTW, you look totally chic in all your vacation photos. I always look a mess when traveling!

  4. Oh yum oh yum oh yum I love gelato!! You can totally do an all ice cream month!! I would LOVE it!!

    I dream of gelato from Italy too. Sigh. I’m so jealous. Please please tell me you guys had pizza from L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele in Naples! It’s the best pizza in the world!!!

  5. I was in Rome when I was 11-1/2 (I can’t believe it has been 40 years!) and I had gelato there. I forget the flavors i had but I think I also had some every day. It was like no ice cream I had ever had. I’ve had some since, but not in Italy, and it is always so much fresher tasting as it doesn’t have as much butterfat as ice cream so the flavors taste clearer. Your gelato looks amazing.

  6. In my opinion, it is ALWAYS ice cream season!! I always order cinnamony ice creams whenever they’re available so I know this would be an instant love of mine! IT sounds amazing! I’ll be making it…perhaps this weekend!

  7. I went to Europe this past summer and when I stayed at my aunt’s in Italy, I had gelato at least twice a day. I loved the ferrero rocher and the noccialo (hazelnut)…actually I just loved all of them! I tried a different flavor each day and it was amazing. We followed trip advisor’s suggestions of which places had the best gelato and oh my…they were so amazing!

  8. Oh my gosh! I so wish I had an ice cream maker right now! It’s not fair I tell you :P

  9. I would gain so much weight if we did a trip to Italy – between the pizza, pasta and gelato, it would not be pretty :) You’re right, this would be amazing with a peach cobbler this summer!!

  10. i’m having a cookout this weekend and want to make this! i, too, have the ice cream attachment and have yet to use it. what a great inaugural recipe this would be!! have i mentioned how much i adore cinnamon??
    my question is- number 3 on the directions is blank. should there be something there or is that my moment to just breathe? ;)

  11. Cinnamon gelato is my favorite! I love it! This looks so perfectly creamy. I bought my ice cream maker late last summer and just pulled it out a couple of months ago for the first time. Now I love using it.

  12. Hi Audra! I was directed to your lovely blog through Nosh It. I just love it, and I couldn’t help reading your post about la bella Roma. I too am in love with this beautiful city and cannot wait to visit again. For my daily dose of ice-cream I loved Gelateria Della Palma. Great ice-cream (as good as Giolittis, I was promised by a local) without the long queues/lines). Have you been there? xx

    1. Hey Roberta! When we were in Rome we pretty much went to Giolittis every day so I didn’t try any others, but I will remember your suggestion for my next trip!! :)

  13. What an absolutely terrible web experience. How many more ads can you include that don’t close when you click the x and cover the screen for the duration of the video i didn’t come here to see. Thanks for doing your part to ruin the web. But hey, get your clicks.

    1. Hi Bill. Sorry you didn’t have a good experience. These recipes are free to you, but I work hard on them, and this is my full time job. The ads pay the bills and that’s just how it is unfortunately. Compared to other sites I have was fewer ads, and I am always trying to balance it. But again, free recipe….thanks for stopping by.

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