How To Make A Vanilla Milkshake

A vanilla milkshake is a refreshing and delicious classic you can easily make at home. You can blend a creamy milkshake in minutes with simple ingredients like vanilla ice cream, milk, and vanilla extract.

How To Make A Vanilla Milkshake

We will teach you how to make the perfect vanilla milkshake. We'll review ingredients, equipment, and step-by-step instructions for blending this nostalgic treat. We'll also share tips for customizing your shake and making it dairy-free if needed.

So grab your ice cream scoop and enjoy this timeless beverage!


Making a great vanilla milkshake starts with choosing the right ingredients. Here's what you'll need:

  • Vanilla ice cream - Select a quality vanilla ice cream, not one loaded with artificial flavors. French vanilla or vanilla bean ice cream both work very well.
  • Milk - Whole milk or 2% milk gives the creamiest texture. For a lighter shake, use 1% or skim milk.
  • Vanilla extract - Pure vanilla extract enhances the vanilla flavor. Use one teaspoon for an extra vanilla kick.
  • Sweetener (optional) - If your ice cream isn't very sweet, add 1-2 tablespoons of white sugar or other sweeteners.
  • Mix-ins (optional) - Customize your shake with chocolate syrup, caramel sauce, berries, banana slices, peanut butter, etc.
  • Whipped cream - Top off your shake with a dollop of fresh whipped cream.

Equipment Needed

Making a milkshake is easy with just a few basic appliances:

  • Blender - You'll need a blender to get a smooth, creamy texture. Any countertop blender will work.
  • Glasses and straws - Serve your shakes in tall glasses with fun reusable straws.
  • Ice cream scoop - An ice cream scoop makes portioning the ice cream quick and easy.

How to Make a Vanilla Milkshake

Now let's go over the simple steps for making this classic treat:

  1. Add 3-4 scoops of vanilla ice cream to your blender. Use about 1/2 cup to 2/3 cup of ice cream for one serving. For two servings, double the amount.
  2. Pour in 1/3 to 1/2 cup of cold milk. The more milk you add, the thinner the consistency. Add less milk for a thicker, more classic shake.
  3. Add one teaspoon of vanilla extract. This boosts the vanilla flavor.
  4. Blend the ingredients quickly until smooth and creamy, at least 30 seconds. Stop and scrape down the sides as needed.
  5. Customize with your favorite mix-ins (optional). Add them now and blend briefly to incorporate.
  6. Pour the milkshake into a chilled glass. Top with whipped cream and any other toppings if desired.
  7. Enjoy your shake with a reusable straw! Slurp up your shake before it melts.

Tips for the Best Vanilla Milkshake

Follow these tips for making the perfect, frosty vanilla shake every time:

  • Chill your glasses ahead of time by placing them in the freezer for 15 minutes before blending.
  • Use very cold ice cream straight from the freezer for maximum thickness.
  • Avoid adding ice, which will water down the shake.
  • Add a pinch of salt to balance the sweetness.
  • Top with whipped cream immediately so it doesn't melt into the shake.
  • Use high-quality ingredients like real vanilla and whole milk or cream.

Easy Variations

Once you master the original, try these fun and easy ways to change up your vanilla shake:

  • Strawberry - Blend in 1/2 cup fresh strawberries.
  • Chocolate - Swirl in 2 tablespoons chocolate syrup.
  • Cookies & Cream - Add crumbled Oreo cookies.
  • Mint Chocolate Chip - Use mint chocolate chip ice cream.
  • Caramel - Drizzle caramel sauce over your shake.
  • Peanut Butter - Mix in 2 tablespoons of peanut butter before blending.
  • Banana - Blend in 1 frozen sliced banana for a thick, creamy shake.

How to Make Dairy-Free Vanilla Shakes

To make a dairy-free vanilla shake, swap the dairy ingredients:

  • Use non-dairy vanilla ice cream, like cashew or coconut milk-based.
  • Substitute the milk with unsweetened non-dairy milk like almond, soy, coconut, oat, etc.
  • Use dairy-free whipped topping if desired.

Then follow the same instructions, blending the non-dairy ice cream with non-dairy milk and vanilla until smooth and creamy. Enjoy!


How long does a homemade vanilla milkshake last in the fridge?

A homemade vanilla milkshake will last 2-3 days when stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Make sure to stir it well before drinking to reincorporate any separation. The shake may not be quite as thick after refrigerating.

What can I use instead of vanilla extract?

If you don't have vanilla extract, substitute one teaspoon of vanilla bean paste or the seeds scraped from 1/2 vanilla bean. Almond or maple extract (1/2 teaspoon) also work well and provide a nice flavor twist.

Can I freeze the leftover vanilla milkshake?

Yes, you can freeze any leftovers for up to 2 months. Pour the shake into popsicle molds or small containers with popsicle sticks. Let freeze completely overnight before removing from molds. Store frozen shakes in a ziplock bag.

What kind of blender works best?

A high-powered blender like a Vitamix or Ninja provides the smoothest, creamiest milkshake texture. However, any countertop blender will work. Blend for 60-90 seconds to fully break down the ice cream.

Can I make a vegan vanilla milkshake?

Absolutely! Use non-dairy vanilla ice cream, such as coconut or cashew based. Substitute the milk with unsweetened non-dairy milk like almond, oat, or soy. Top with dairy-free whipped cream.


As you can see, making a vanilla milkshake at home is easy and fun. In just minutes, you can blend up this nostalgic treat to enjoy any time you're craving a cool, creamy classic.

Make it for kids after school, a weekend treat, or a midnight snack. Customize it with your favorite flavors, or keep it simple with the essential ingredients.

Either way, a homemade vanilla shake made right beats the store-bought kind any day. So grab that ice cream scoop and start blending!

AGAH Productions
AGAH Productions