Coppola Feast

Lemon-Basil Olive Oil Gelato

Recipes We Love Right Now

By Rebecca Firth of Displaced Housewife

Let’s make some lemon-basil olive oil gelato, shall we?

Before We Get Started

  • Ice Cream Maker. When I lived in Beijing I didn’t have an ice cream maker so I would use my immersion blender and it would yield the same results, albeit a wee more time consuming. After the gelato mixture has chilled place it in the freezer in a tall container (something that your immersion blender will have the height and space to do its magic). Every 30 minutes thereafter take the it out of the freezer and run the blender in the mixture to break up any ice crystals that are forming…it should only take a minute or two. Cover and place back in the freezer. Repeat until the gelato is thick and creamy. If you’re chilling at home on the weekend, this isn’t a big deal. If you’re really busy, this is unrealistic. And frankly, presents a wonderful opportunity (excuse?) to buy an ice cream maker. I have an inexpensive KitchenAid one that works great.
  • Zesting Lemons. Make sure to only get the yellow part of the lemon and not the pith. I like having the zest in the final gelato. If this bugs you, strain the gelato into your ice cream maker before making to get out any bits.
  • Basil. You want some beautiful, bright-green basil leaves for this. While making the gelato, treat them with care as you don’t want to bruise them.
  • Olive Oil. This recipe was created for Lucini Italia. I used their 100% Italian Premium Olive Oil. The olive oil flavor is really pronounced, so use one that has a flavor you love and would happily drink straight from the bottle.


Lemon gelato.




  • 2 cups whole milk
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon zest (about 4 lemons)
  • ¼ cup fresh whole basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ cup good quality extra virgin olive oil


  1. In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, add the milk, sugar, lemon zest, basil leaves and fresh lemon juice. Gently stir until the sugar dissolves, turn off the heat and let sit for 30 minutes. Take the basil out and whisk in egg yolks, one at a time making sure the first is well blended before adding in the second. Whisk in the salt for 30 seconds more. Add the basil back in and pour the mixture into a lidded container and stash in the fridge for several hours until chilled through.
  2. Once cool, add to your ice cream maker* and proceed with manufacturers instructions. You want to stop the gelato before it gets too firm, for me this was around 25 minutes in my ice cream maker. At this point drizzle in the olive oil while the machine runs. Scoop into a clean, lidded container and freezer for several hours before serving.
  3. Thank you for making this olive oil gelato! Please tag me on social media @displacedhousewife #displacedhousewife so I can see your gorgeous creations!

*I made it with both the basil in the final gelato and also where I would take it out before putting the mixture into the ice cream maker. I think I preferred the version without, fyi, although some of the photos have the basil in the gelato. Second, see above notes (Before We Get Started) on how to make without an ice cream maker.


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