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Gianduja Gelato (Milk Chocolate and Hazelnut Gelato)

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Gianduja Gelato (Milk Chocolate and Hazelnut Gelato)

This classic gianduja gelato made with real roasted hazelnuts and milk chocolate has a nutty sweetness that is reminiscent of childhood treats. It’s an unforgettable, heart-warming dessert!

Gianduja Gelato (Milk Chocolate and Hazelnut Gelato) // FoodNouveau.com

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Gianduja is one of those quintessential Italian flavors, one most of us North Americans came to know under the brand name Nutella. Gianduja was indeed first a spread created in the North of Italy in the early 19th century. It is said that the import law of the time-restricted cocoa supplies, and that gave an Italian chocolatier from Turin the idea of combining chocolate with hazelnuts, which he had liberal access to. This combination was so popular that a chocolate manufacturer soon created a mass-produced milk chocolate hazelnut candy—and the rest is history.

Gianduja Gelato (Milk Chocolate and Hazelnut Gelato) // FoodNouveau.com

The gianduja “flavor” is now applied to so many treats, from candies to cakes. Gianduja gelato is also a hugely popular flavor, along with Baci, another candy-inspired flavor that combines dark chocolate with hazelnuts. Both flavors are dreamy, but I keep going back to gianduja gelato for its nutty sweetness that reminds me of the spoonfuls of Nutella I’d secretly steal from the rare jars that made it into my parents’ pantry when I was a child.

Making homemade gianduja gelato is pretty simple: you add milk chocolate to a Sicilian-style gelato base, then mix in ground toasted hazelnuts. The result is an unforgettable treat that pleases everyone, from kids to kids-at-heart.

Gianduja Gelato (Milk Chocolate and Hazelnut Gelato) // FoodNouveau.com


Helpful Tips for Making Gianduja Gelato


The quality of the milk chocolate you use matters

For the best gianduja gelato flavor and texture, make sure to use quality baking chocolate. The cacao content should be between 30 and 40%. I recommend the following brands:

Using real hazelnuts is worth the extra work

Lots of gianduja gelato recipes take the shortcut of stirring Nutella into the gelato base. Sure, Nutella is a delicious treat, but for the real taste of toasted hazelnuts to carry through—and to enjoy the most delightful combination with milk chocolate—you must use real nuts. This is how authentic gianduja is made. Try it once and you’ll never want to have it any other way!

Hazelnuts can be sold under different names

Raw hazelnuts are sometimes packaged as “filberts.” Filberts and hazelnuts are one and the same! (Read why hazelnuts go by several names.)

How to Peel Hazelnuts

Peeling hazelnuts is really easy! The key is to roast them first.

To roast and peel hazelnuts, spread them over a baking sheet and bake at 350°F (170°C) for 15 minutes, giving the tray a good shake every five minutes. When the skin of the hazelnuts is shiny and crackled, remove them from the oven and transfer them to a clean dish towel. Close the towel up into a bundle and rub the hazelnuts against one another vigorously to remove the skin. Open the towel and pick up the peeled hazelnuts. Some bits of skin will remain and that’s ok, simply make sure to discard all the loose papery bits. Keep the roasted hazelnuts in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to use.

Roasted and peeled hazelnuts to make gelato // FoodNouveau.com

Look for roasted and peeled hazelnuts to save time

Some companies, such as Yupik in Canada and AZNUT in the US, sell unsalted roasted hazelnuts. These are more expensive, but a huge time saver. Nuts are expensive and using stale nuts in a dessert is such an awful waste! Make sure to buy roasted nuts from a store with a high turnover and from a company with a good reputation to make sure they are fresh.

Gianduja Gelato (Milk Chocolate and Hazelnut Gelato) // FoodNouveau.com


WATCH MY GELATO MASTERCLASS

Never made gelato before? Curious about what makes gelato different from ice cream? Check out my colorful masterclass! In it, you’ll find out what makes gelato different from ice cream, how to make a versatile gelato base you can turn into various flavors, and all my secrets and tips to churn and serve outstanding gelato. I even share how to make dairy-free, vegan gelato! In short, it’s a very thorough, colorful class that will quickly turn you into a gelato master.

This masterclass was previously hosted behind a paywall on an educational site where thousands of students rated it 5 STARS! It’s now available to all gelato lovers worldwide, absolutely free. Watch Now!


More Delicious Homemade Gelato Recipes

Love gelato? Then you need to give these irresistible gelato recipes a try.

Dark Chocolate Gelato // FoodNouveau.com Pistachio Gelato Made with Homemade Pistachio Paste // FoodNouveau.com How to Make Sicilian-Style Gelato // FoodNouveau.com


 
Gianduja Gelato (Milk Chocolate and Hazelnut Gelato) // FoodNouveau.com

Gianduja Gelato (Milk Chocolate and Hazelnut Gelato)

This gianduja gelato made with real roasted hazelnuts and milk chocolate is incredibly cream and has an irresistible nutty sweetness. It's an unforgettable, heart-warming dessert!
Prep Time:25 minutes
Cook Time:10 minutes
Cooling + Freezing Time:4 hours
Servings 1 quart (4 cups/1L)

Ingredients

For the Milk Chocolate Gelato Base

For the Hazelnut Butter

Instructions

  • For the Milk Chocolate Gelato Base: Measure out the milk, then scoop out 2 tbsp (30 ml) and place in a small bowl. Set aside.
  • Pour the remaining milk in a medium saucepan, then add the heavy cream, milk chocolate, and sugar. Set over medium heat and whisk constantly until the milk chocolate and sugar are fully melted and incorporated. Remove from the heat temporarily.
  • Whisk the cornstarch into the reserved milk. Pour into the saucepan and whisk to combine. Return the mixture over medium-low heat and cook, whisking constantly, for 5 minutes. (The mixture will thicken slightly.) Whisk in the hazelnut liqueur, if using.
  • Strain the milk chocolate gelato base into an airtight container. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate overnight.
    The milk chocolate gelato base must be very cold before churning: this will produce the smoothest, silkiest texture.
  • For the Hazelnut Butter: Using a stick blender or a mini food processor, grind the hazelnuts to a smooth butter consistency. Depending of the appliance you’re using, this can take between 3 to 5 minutes. You don’t need to add any liquid to facilitate the process, just some patience. Scrape down the container from time to time and keep grinding, you’ll get there.
  • Measure out the hazelnut butter to get ½ cup (125 ml). Store any remaining almond butter for tomorrow’s morning toast.
  • Whisk the hazelnut butter into the cool milk chocolate gelato base. Use a stand blender, a stick blender, or a food processor to fully combine and blend to a super smooth consistency. Strain the mixture for the smoothest texture.
  • Pour the gianduja gelato custard into the bowl of an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer's instructions. Stop the machine when the gelato is thick and icy but still easily spoonable.
  • STORAGE: Transfer the gelato to an airtight container and freeze until firm, about two hours.
    Gianduja gelato is at its creamiest and best if enjoyed within 2 weeks. Past that, some ice crystals will inevitably start forming (especially if the gelato is kept in the freezer section of a regular fridge, as opposed to a chest freezer) and the texture won't be quite as smooth. The gelato will still be perfectly edible for up to 2 months, but my advice is: enjoy it as quickly as possible after churning.
  • SERVING: Always take Gianduja gelato out to room temperature 20 minutes before serving to make it easier to scoop. This will also allow you to enjoy the treat at its ideal temperature and texture.
  • MAKE IT DAIRY FREE: Substitute lactose-free milk or oat milk for the regular milk, and lactose-free heavy cream or soy cream for the regular heavy cream.
  • NOTE: HOW TO ROAST AND PEEL HAZELNUTS
    To roast and peel hazelnuts, spread them over a baking sheet and bake at 350°F (170°C) for 15 minutes, giving the tray a good shake every five minutes. When the skin of the hazelnuts is shiny and crackled, remove from the oven and transfer to a clean dish towel. Close the towel up into a bundle and rub the hazelnuts against one another vigorously to remove the skin. Open the towel and pick up the peeled hazelnuts. Some bits of skin will remain and that’s ok, simply make sure to discard all the loose papery bits. Keep the roasted hazelnuts in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to use.

Did you make this?

Tell me how you liked it! Leave a comment or take a picture and tag it with @foodnouveau on Instagram.

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Author: Marie Asselin

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Cooling + Freezing Time: 4 hours

WHAT DID YOU THINK OF THIS RECIPE?

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4.19 from 22 votes (14 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating




  1. 5 stars
    This was one of my favorite flavors of gelato when I visited Italy! I’ve been looking to recreate this and I’m so glad I used your recipe. It was amazing, thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    This gelato is so incredibly creamy and smooth, I couldn’t even wait to let it freeze for 2 hours before eating haha! It was like soft serve, so delicious.

  3. 5 stars
    I made this last night for dessert, and my kids loved it! I love how it has the same texture as ice cream. Will definitely be making it again!

  4. 5 stars
    Gianduja has to be my husband and son’s favorite gelato flavor so I was excited to have found your recipe. They said it was better than their favorite gelateria’s in Sicily, so that’s a high compliment.

  5. 5 stars
    We used gianduja quite a bit in pastry class and not a single person ever disliked what we created with it. I love that this recipe lets the flavor shine – so decadent. Definitely my kinda dessert!

    • Yes gianduja is a pretty irresistible flavor and you can use it in so many desserts! It’s a crowd-pleasing flavor. I think nostalgia plays a big part into this!

  6. Oh! I had no idea that’s what gianduja chocolate was. I love learning new stuff about food so thanks for clearing that up. No matter what you call it though, this gelato was delicious!

  7. 5 stars
    Oh my, just give me a spoon and let me dig in. Who can resist the combination of chocolate and hazelnut? Not me!! Perfect summer treat.