This delicious Salted Lime Sherbet (Margarita Ice Cream) is tangy, salty, creamy and refreshing, and super easy to make! t’s got all the flavours of a classic margarita, (optionally) MINUS the alcohol, so even kids can enjoy this all summer long!
This salted lime sherbet even made an appearance in my recent Hibiscus Strawberry Margarita Ice Cream Float post. A delightful summer recipe for kids (without the alcohol, of course) and adults, alike!
So I’m just sitting here at my laptop, having eaten a bowl of this Salted Lime Sherbet, and I’m at a loss for words. This just might be the biggest flavour party in town, and it’s all happening in my mouth baby!
Unabashedly refreshing, salty, sweet, creamy and most of all tangy, especially tangy, this Salted Lime Sherbet is just SO good, if I say so myself. It’s a party alright, and you’re cordially invited.
I’ve been eating lime sherbet for years, but adding salt is a new habit. I’m not really sure why I never thought of it before. After all, I love drinking margarita, and I’ve got tons of margarita recipes on the blog already (like this spicy margarita with jalapenos, rhubarb margarita, mint kiwi margarita, frozen mango margarita, smoked margarita sour, frozen pineapple margarita shandy etc., you get the picture?).
And before that, long before I turned 18, I loved drinking lime juice drinks (like this ginger limeade for example). Chilled lime juice drinks are almost unnaturally popular in Sri Lanka, where limes are readily available any time of the year, and the best lime juice drinks always had a hint of salt.
Lime juice was my go-to beverage as a kid whenever I went to a restaurant there, not sodas. And it’s still my favourite pick-me-up drink when I’m feeling unwell. The salt has this uncanny ability to enhance the sweetness and all the other flavours of lime juice and also dulls the sourness and tanginess.
But if you do decide that you don’t want to make this Salted Lime Sherbet, salted, I’d still recommend reducing the salt to 1/4 tsp, so that it’s not actually salted, but there’s still a hint of it to intensify the flavour profile of this lime sherbet.
Why is this a margarita ice cream?
Because it’s got all the flavour of a traditional margarita, MINUS the alcohol. But there’s a quick fix for that of course – just pour a shot of tequila and a splash of soda (limeade, lemonade or club soda) over a scoop of this delicious salted lime sherbet!
Add a scoop of sherbet with a shot of tequila (or two – who am I to judge?), and stir or blend to mix the tequila and sherbet together (to melt the sherbet) and drink! That way you get a delicious creamy margarita!
However you decide to eat it though, I guarantee you’re going to love this margarita ice cream. It’s super tangy, refreshing, creamy, with a lovely saltiness and the perfect amount of sweetness. If a sherbet could ever make you long for summer, a beach, and the sun on your back, then this is the one to do it.
And remember, sherbets harden a little more than ice cream. So while it tastes smooth and creamy, you need to let it soften a little before you can form smooth scoops.
Salted Lime Sherbet (Margarita Ice Cream)
- ⅔ cup lime juice I used small limes, so I had to use A LOT
- 4 tsp grated lime zest
- 3 oz sugar
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- ¾ cup of whole milk or half and half
- Additional 1 cup of whole milk chilled
- 1 cup of cream chilled or substitute with half and half
- 3 – 4 tbsp Silver tequila optional – and will result in a softer sherbet
- Place ¾ cup of whole milk, salt and sugar in a saucepan. Heat until the sugar has melted. Add the grated lime zest and lime juice and mix to combine. The milk will curdle – this is normal.
- Add the rest of the chilled milk, cream and tequila (if using) and mix well to combine. Transfer to the freezer or fridge to chill.
- Add the chilled mix to your ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Transfer to a container and let it harden in the freezer for a few hours.
- Let it soften a little before scooping the ice cream (or use a warm scoop to make it easier).
- Zest extra lime on top before serving (optional).
No Ice Cream Churner? No problem!
- Place the milk mixture in a large flat freezer proof dish. Every few hours, break the hardened milk base with a fork and mix it in with the rest.
- Repeat this every few hours (changing to a whisk or hand mix as the mixture hardens more), until the mix is icy and smooth. Let it harden for a few hours.
“This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.”
And don’t forget to check out how I used this Salted Lime Sherbet in this DELICIOUS Hibiscus Strawberry Margarita Ice Cream Float!
A few notes about frozen desserts
There are a variety of frozen desserts out there. From ice cream recipes to gelato, sorbet, sherbet, granita, frozen slushies etc. Here’s a very brief overview of each.
Usually made with a custard that’s combined with heavy cream and then churned to perfection. The richness of ice cream depends on how many eggs (or egg yolks) are added to the custard base.
The more egg yolks you add, the richer it is. And of course the amount of cream that’s added makes a difference too. Usually the ratio is 1:2 of milk to cream. The richer ice cream use up to 6 egg yolks per cup of milks, but I prefer about 3-4 egg yolks per cup of milk (or sometimes half and half).
I love gelato! Usually slightly denser than ice cream because it’s churned more slowly and has less air incorporated into it. Ice cream makers are different compared to gelato makers because of the churning speed. Also gelato has less cream. In fact the ratio is usually the opposite of ice cream, 1:2 of cream to milk.
This is when you have a churned frozen dessert with NO dairy. The base is usually fruit (although you can make something like chocolate sorbet by mixing chocolate and water and then churning it), sugar and water. Perfect for those who can’t eat dairy. Some sorbet recipes include egg white in ’em, because beaten egg whites can create a lighter sorbet. You can also replicate this (to an extent) without using egg whites, by adding soda instead of water. It’s not the same, but you’ll still end up with a sorbet that’s lighter in texture.
Check out my easy fruit sorbet recipe that is very popular on the blog!
Like this salted lime sherbet that I’ve shared here. Includes dairy (like milk), but NO eggs. One could argue that Philadelphia-style ice cream is a form of sherbet because it doesn’t contain eggs, but I’d disagree. I think sherbet is less creamy than that, because you don’t add nearly the same amount of cream.
Granita and Frozen Slushies
like this red wine granita that I made recently. These are like sorbets, but even easier to make! Granita requires the base to be completely frozen and the flaked with a fork to create icy flakes – as opposed to fine, smooth ice crystals that you get with churned sorbets. Slushie is when either a granita or a sorbet is half frozen, so that you can either eat with a spoon or sip it through a straw.
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