When I read smitten kitchen’s recipe for saltine crack ice cream sandwiches I immediately knew that I would have to attempt making them at home. It had all things I love; chocolate, caramel, saltines, and ice cream. A wonderful dessert for Summertime in New England. It will be hard to limit yourself to just one.
Chocolate & Caramel Saltine Ice Cream Sandwiches Adapted From smitten kitchen’s Saltine Crack Ice Cream Sandwiches
24 saltine crackers (around 1 sleeve of saltines).
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 ounces (1 1/3 cups) of dark chocolate chips (I used 70% Cocoa Chocolate Disks, but you can use what you like or a lower percentage).
2/3 cup toasted, sliced almonds
Sea salt for sprinkling
14 oz of ice cream (I used 1 14 oz container of Haagen-Dazs Vanilla)*
Preheat your oven to 350°F.
Line the bottom and sides of 1 9×13-inch baking sheet with foil, then spray it with nonstick baking spray.
Carefully arrange the saltines in a single layer in the bottom of your pan. Spread them out evenly avoiding any uneven surfaces. Make sure to layer them with the salted side of the saltine facing the pan and the flat part facing up.
Melt the butter and brown sugar together in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Continuously stir the two together until it begins to boil. Once it comes to a boil, begin to whisk the two together for 2-3 more minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract*.
Pour mixture over the saltines and carefully spread the caramel evenly in a layer over the crackers. Deb recommends using an offset spatula to evenly spread the caramel, but I don’t own one. So I used a rubber spatula and a brush. You will want to move fast and gracefully with this sauce*.
Bake in a heated oven for 10-15 minutes (Mine were done at 10 minutes. You don’t want burned saltines).
Remove the pan from the oven and distribute chocolate chips over caramel crackers. Wait about 5 minutes for them to soften, then use a spatula to spread the chocolate into an even layer. Sprinkle with toasted almond slices and a couple pinches of sea salt.
Transfer the pan to the freezer to cool for 30 minutes. I put my pan on oven mitts in the freezer to prevent burning anything in there. After 30 minutes, remove from the freezer and lift the sheet of crackers out carefully onto a cutting board using the foil to lift it out. Carefully remove the foil laying the sheet of saltines onto your cutting board with the chocolate side facing up. Use a good serrated knife to carefully cut the sheet in half evenly.
Line the bottom and sides of your baking pan with a piece of plastic wrap. Place your first sheet of saltines chocolate side down in the bottom of your pan. Scoop ice cream over the sheet and spread it into an even layer. This may take a few minutes to evenly spread out without breaking the crackers. Place second sheet of candy, chocolate side up, on top, pressing it onto the ice cream. Return to freezer for 4-8 hours. I waited 6 hours and then took them out to cut them into 16 individual sandwiches with a serrated knife.*
After sandwiches are cut, put them back in the freezer to harden. Transfer to a freezer safe container or bag for storage.
- Don’t be like me and forget to mix your Vanilla Extract into the butter/sugar caramel mixture before spreading onto your saltines. If you do forget to do this like me, then put the vanilla extract in a small bowl and use a brush to distribute it evenly over the saltines. This was a safe workaround for me after I already spread the caramel mixture on my saltines.
- Put the cutting board in the freezer for a few minutes to cool it before slicing the squares up.
- Try to cut the squares as evenly as possible, but this can be tricky. I ended up with different sized squares which is OK because I’m not on The Great British Bakeoff.
- I used one 14 oz carton of Vanilla Ice Cream. You could probably use a bit more, but I didn’t want to overdo it on my first attempt. It may help to take the ice cream out of the freezer a couple of minutes before the saltines to let it soften before sandwiching between the crackers. Up to you.
- One day I may attempt this again using two 8×8 pans, but I only own one so I stuck with the one 9×13 pan route. This would likely require more crackers than what I used for this.