How to make milkshake in a blender – 3 easy recipes

You can make a delicious milkshake in a stand mixer – or with an immersion blender – in minutes

Milkshake being poured from a blender
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Who can resist a milkshake? It's a yummy treat for adults and a great way to get milk and fruit (and even veg) into a fussy child. Usually made with ice cream and milk, a milkshake can be easily and quickly made with a blender.

The best blender to use for making a milkshake with added ingredients, whether frozen fruit or ice, is a countertop model. For basic recipes, such as a simple vanilla milkshake, you can simply use an immersion blender.  

Here, we show you how to make a basic milkshake in a blender, plus suggest a few additions to create more adventurous milkshakes. All are super easy and, of course, you can easily add your own toppings to taste. 

How to make a milkshake in a blender

Vanilla milkshake

(Image credit: Getty Images)

It's important to drink your milkshake when it's cold and start the mixing before the ice cream melts, so get all your kit and ingredients ready before you start. This vanilla milkshake recipe takes around 5 minutes maximum and makes two milkshakes.

Ingredients

Getting the milk/ice cream ratio right is a must for a creamy, not too thick, not too thin milkshake. Baker Jemma Wilson (opens in new tab), founder of Cupcake Jemma and author of Crumbs & Doilies (opens in new tab) says that she has found 'the ultimate milkshake with the perfect balance of milk and ice cream': ⅓ cup of whole milk with 160-175g ice cream. These are the proportions I use for milkshakes, and they work wonderfully.

How to make a vanilla milkshake

This couldn't be easier! Bring the ice cream out of the freezer about 10 minutes before you start to blend for best results. As you do so, put your milkshake glasses in, so that they are nice and chilled when you're ready to serve.

1. Put all your ingredients in the blender

Put first the milk and then ice cream in the blender. It's best to use an ice cream that's as natural as possible; any soft scoop ice creams will affect the texture of the milkshake.

We are making this basic milkshake with vanilla ice cream but you can easily add a flavored ice cream instead for a very easy alternative.

2. Now blend and pour

Blend for just a minute, then pour into your chilled milkshake glasses. The perfect consistency? There's no hard and fast rule – that is totally up to you.

Add toppings, from cream to sprinkles, and a straw neat sipping.

How to make a fruit milkshake in a blender

Fruit milkshake in a blender

(Image credit: Getty Images)

To make a fruit milkshake you could just swap vanilla ice cream for strawberry ice cream, for example. But getting real fruit into the milkshake can't be beaten on flavor. The simplest way to do so is to add a cup of soft fruits – strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries – to the blender before you add the milk and ice cream, before blending.

I make milkshakes with fruit every weekend without fail, and I always add a banana too, for sweetness. I also like to add frozen mango and pineapple, too. In doing so, I find that I don't need to add the ice cream: the fruit provides the bulk and the sweetness.

Once blended, a fruit milkshake can be quite thick, which will allow you to balance a slice of fruit on top for decoration.

Milkshake in a blender

(Image credit: Getty Images)

How to make a chocolate milkshake

Chocolate milkshake

(Image credit: Getty Images)

To make a chocolate milkshake, you can again use the basic vanilla recipe above, and simply add chocolate sauce or syrup to the basic vanilla recipe. You can do this to taste, but adding two tablespoons per milkshake will be enough for most chocolate lovers. Another option is to swap vanilla ice cram with chocolate ice cream. 

Then, simply decorate the milkshake to taste, with whipped cream, chocolate drops, or fruit.

Hershey's chocolate syrup (you can buy from Amazon) (opens in new tab) gets our vote.

FAQs

Do you put ice in a blender when making a milkshake?

You don't have to put ice in a blender when you make a milkshake if you are adding ice cream or frozen fruit.

'You should also ensure that if you are going to put ice in a blender that the blades are designed to take the friction – not all are,' says Homes & Gardens' Head of Ecomms, Alex David, who has tested many of the blenders in our buyer's guide.

How long do you blend a milkshake?

Usually, you do not need more than a minute to blend a milk shake.

Is a smoothie the same as a milkshake?

Smoothies are different to milkshakes: smoothies are made with yogurt or sorbet, while milkshakes are made with milk, cream or ice cream. 


None of these recipes is time-consuming; all you have to do now is clean your blender, which, undoubtedly, will take longer.

Lucy Searle
Global Editor in Chief

Lucy Searle has written about interiors, property and gardens since 1990, working her way around the interiors departments of women's magazines before switching to interiors-only titles in the mid-nineties. She was Associate Editor on Ideal Home, and Launch Editor of 4Homes magazine, before moving into digital in 2007, launching Channel 4's flagship website, Channel4.com/4homes. In 2018, Lucy took on the role of Global Editor in Chief for Realhomes.com, taking the site from a small magazine add-on to a global success. She was asked to repeat that success at Homes & Gardens, where she has also taken on the editorship of the magazine.