Mung Bean Ice Cream

July 28, 2011

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Mung beans are common in Chinese cuisine so I grew up eating them. My mom makes mung beans into a sweet, chilled soup dessert, which I hated. Despite her pleas to me that mung beans are healthy and it’s good for me, I couldn’t get pass the graininess until I decided to incorporate it into my favorite food group. Ice cream! Smooth and creamy with a bit of texture.

Mung beans have a high protein content, which makes it popular in India which is mainly a vegetarian country. It contains large amounts of vitamins such as vitamin A, E, B, and C and minerals including iron, potassium and calcium. High in fiber, mung beans aid digestion.

Mung Bean Ice Cream.

1 cup sugar
6 egg yolks
2 cup coconut milk
12 oz mung beans
3 cups heavy cream

  • Cook the mung beans in water until soft. If you are short on time, you can soak them the night before but make sure to place them in the fridge or they will sprout. You can also cook them in a slow cooker.
  • Drain excess water.
  • You can either puree all of the beans into a paste or leave some whole. I like my ice cream to have a bit of texture so I pureed 2/3 of the beans to paste.
  • Beat the sugar and egg yolks together in a medium bowl until pale yellow.
  • Bring the coconut milk to a boil in a medium saucepan and remove from heat.
  • Whisk into the egg mixture and scrape back into the saucepan. Stir constantly over medium-low heat with a whisk until the custard thickens (about 5 minutes) making sure to scrape the bottom of the pan. Strain the custard into a clean bowl. Mix in the red bean paste and then stir in the cream. Cover and refrigerate completely before churning in your ice cream machine. Makes about a quart.

Funny story about these mung beans. I left them soaking by my window overnight and was greeted in the morning with bean sprouts. Thankfully only the ones on the top layer began their journey of life so I just scooped them out. Mung beans + water = bean sprouts, which you can eat. Serve with a salad or sauteed with garlic.

Mung beans can be purchased at Whole Food Market.


Jane Ko is the Austin blogger behind A Taste of Koko, Austin's top food and travel blog featuring the hottest restaurants and weekend getaways. Jane has been a speaker at South by Southwest (SXSW), Texas Conference for Women, BlogHer, and more on entrepreneurship and social media. She lives in Austin Texas with her dog and cat.