Skip to main content

Ice cream cookie cups win Pillsbury Bake-Off

By Kat Kinsman, Special to CNN
The sweet treats are made from Pillsbury's sugar cookies and ice cream, nuts, jam and raspberries.
The sweet treats are made from Pillsbury's sugar cookies and ice cream, nuts, jam and raspberries.
  • Mini Ice Cream Cookie Cups creator is winner of Pillsbury Bake-Off
  • Sue Compton whipped up a batch to win competition
  • Recipe starts with Pillsbury Ready to Bake refrigerated sugar cookies
  • Nuts, chocolate, jam, ice cream and fresh raspberries also are included
  • Recipes
  • Food and Cooking
  • Desserts

(CNN) -- Sue Compton is having a pretty sweet day. She's a newly minted millionaire, courtesy of her Pillsbury Bake-Off win, announced live Wednesday morning on "The Oprah Winfrey Show."

Her original recipe for Mini Ice Cream Cookie Cups took top honors in the 44th annual contest.

The winning baker said it wasn't a stove-slaving process of trial and error for her.

"Just once and done. For real. It just came together and I'm very lucky."

She sought inspiration from the list of potential ingredients required by Pillsbury -- eligible recipes must include two, in specified minimum quantities -- and wandered the aisles of her local market.

"The ideas came as a result of trying to combine ingredients I thought would taste good together," she said.

iReport: Share your bake sale memories and recipes

Compton said she doesn't anticipate getting tired of serving up her now-signature dish -- "I like desserts a lot, and you don't see people getting tired of cookies or ice cream" -- or making a foray into the professional baking arena. "I don't see living my life any differently. I'd just like to put the money toward my retirement."

The Delanco, New Jersey, woman took the top prize by whisking past stiff competition like Evelyn Henderson's Salmon Pecan-Crusted Tartlets, Kellie White's Zesty Lime Fish Tacos and Niki Plourde's Tomato Basil Eggs Alfredo in Bread Baskets.

Contestants, who must be amateurs, have been tossing their toques into the ring since the Bake-Off's inception in 1949. That year, Theodora Smafield of Rockford, Illinois, took home $50,000 for her No-Knead Water-Rising Twists recipe -- a sum doubled from the advertised $25,000 pot by a promotional token that she'd run across two months before.

Though her initial win stirred a national obsession with the contest, it still took 44 years for a man -- Kurt Wait -- to rise to the top with a Macadamia Fudge Torte in 1996.

The finished dishes are judged on taste, appearance, creativity and consumer appeal.

Here is the winning recipe for Mini Ice Cream Cookie Cups:


Makes 24 tartlets


• 1 package (16 ounces) Pillsbury Ready to Bake refrigerated sugar cookies (24 cookies)

• 4 teaspoons sugar

• 1/3 cup finely chopped Fisher Chef's Naturals walnuts

• ½ cup Hershey's semisweet chocolate baking chips

• ¼ cup Smucker's Seedless Red Raspberry Jam

• 1½ cups vanilla bean ice cream, softened

• 24 fresh raspberries

Prep time: 20 minutes. Start to finish: 45 minutes


Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 24 mini muffin cups with Crisco Original No-Stick Cooking Spray. Place a cookie dough round in each muffin cup. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Place 2 teaspoons of the sugar in a small bowl. Dip the end of a wooden spoon handle in the sugar and carefully press into the center of each cookie to make a 1-inch-wide indentation. Cool completely in a pan for about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix walnuts and remaining 2 teaspoons of sugar, then set aside. In a small microwaveable bowl, microwave chocolate chips uncovered on high for 30 to 60 seconds, stirring after 30 seconds, until smooth.

Run a knife around the edges of the cups to loosen, and gently remove them from the pan. Dip the rim of each cup into the melted chocolate, then into the walnut mixture. Place the walnut side up on a cookie sheet with sides.

In another small microwaveable bowl, microwave the jam uncovered on high for about 15 seconds until melted. Spoon a half-teaspoon of jam into each cup. Freeze cups for about five minutes or until the chocolate is set.

Spoon the ice cream into the cups, using a small cookie scoop or measuring tablespoon. Top each cup with a fresh raspberry. Store in the freezer, then let stand at room temperature for five minutes before serving.

Nutritional Information:

In one serving, there are: Calories: 150 (calories from fat: 70); total fat: 7 grams (saturated fat 2½ grams, trans fat: 1½ grams); cholesterol: 0 milligrams; sodium: 60 milligrams; total carbohydrates: 19 grams (dietary fiber: 0 grams, sugars: 12 grams); protein: 1 gram.

Percentage daily values* are as follows: Vitamin A: 0%; vitamin C: 0%; calcium: 0%; iron: 2%.

*Percentage daily values are based on a 2,000-calorie diet.