Malted Milkshake

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A rich, thick, and creamy Malted Milkshake makes for the most delicious dessert and it couldn’t be much easier to make! Toss a few ingredients into a blender, let it whirl, and enjoy a malt good enough to rival even the best old-fashioned diner!

Overhead image of the Malted Milkshake

Malted Milkshake

Milkshakes are delicious, but in my opinion, nothing compares to a good thick and creamy malt! And this malted milkshake recipe is our absolute favorite!

Contrary to popular opinion, malts and milkshakes aren’t the same. While there is a lot in common, there are also some key differences.

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So, Is a malt better than a shake? Well, it depends on what you like better. If you love Ovaltine, Whopper’s, or those robin eggs that are popular at Easter time, chances are you love malt powder which means you’ll also probably love malts! If you’re a milkshake purist, you may prefer a regular milkshake instead. (Try this Strawberry Milkshake for starters.)

What Is A Malt?

A malt or malted milkshake is a milkshake with malted milk powder added. The malt powder adds a rich toasty flavor that enhances the milkshake’s flavor and delivers a thicker consistency.

Ingredient shot-- images of the malted milk and ice cream used in this dessert

Malted Milkshake Ingredients

  • Vanilla bean ice cream: The ice cream forms the base of this malt, so it’s important to get good-quality ice cream — you’ll taste it in the malt. Our favorite to use is Tillamook’s® Vanilla Bean (not sponsored).
  • Whole milk: You can use 2%, whole milk, or half-and-half. The higher the fat content of the milk, the creamier, thicker, and richer the malt will be.
  • Vanilla extract: While optional, the vanilla adds a rich restaurant-quality flavor to the malt.
  • Salt: Just the tiniest pinch pulls all the flavors together and helps balance the sweetness of the malted milkshakes. Salt isn’t just for savory recipes!
  • Chocolate syrup: To further emphasize the chocolate flavor (beyond just the milk powder), we like to add a touch of chocolate syrup. Torani® and Ghiradelli® are our favorites, but Hershey®’s works great too! (Not sponsored).
  • Malted milk powder. This ingredient is discussed in the section below.

What Is Malted Milk Powder?

Malted milk powder is an evaporated powder made from malt barley, wheat flour, and whole milk. The term “malt” refers to the grain (barley) that has been sprouted and quickly dried. Once dried, the grain is ground up and becomes the base of this powder. Of course, there are other ingredients added in like flavorings, chocolate, sugar, salt, etc.

Flavor-wise it has a nice sweetness and a bit of savory nuttiness. It’s the perfect add-in to a milkshake!

Malt powders are easy to find — most mainstream grocery stores sell them. Typically, you’ll find these malt powders in one of two places: the baking aisle near flours and powdered milk or in the dry beverage mix section of the store (near hot chocolate mixes). You can also purchase them online. The best malt powder for milkshakes that we’ve found is made by Carnation® (pictured above).

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We use chocolate milk powder for this particular malted milkshake, but there are also vanilla milk powders if you’d prefer a different flavor.

Process shots of Malted Milkshake-- all the ingredients being added to a blender

Malted Milkshake Tips

  • Put the malt serving glass(es) in the freezer before preparing the malt to ensure an extra-frozen, delicious malt that doesn’t melt as quickly.
  • A malt is naturally very thick. To keep it thick, follow the quantities directed in the recipe and make sure you’re using extremely cold ingredients (chilled chocolate sauce, ice cream straight out of the freezer, milk right out of the fridge). Additionally, do not over-blend the mixture. (This is where a high-powered blender comes in handy.) The more the ingredients are blended, the thinner the malt will end up.
  • Using a high-powered blender will ensure the ingredients combine nicely and remain thick. Excessive blending in a weaker blender will thin out the mixture and give a less-than-ideal Malted Milkshake consistency.

Process shots-- all the ingredients being blended together and being poured into a chocolate-drizzled cup

Malt Variations 

This basic Malted Milkshake recipe is such a great starting point to make whatever malt you can imagine. Below are a few ideas, but we’d love for you to share your creations in the comment section!

  • Vanilla: Replace the chocolate malt powder with vanilla malted powder. Leave out the chocolate sauce or replace it with caramel sauce for a vanilla-caramel malt. By using vanilla malt powder, the flavor possibilities are fairly endless — add in the vanilla malt powder and other mix-ins (fruit, candy, etc.) for the flavor you’re going after.
  • Make without a blender: If you don’t happen to have a blender, you can make a malted milkshake by hand. Add all the ingredients to a large bowl and use a silicone spatula or wooden spoon to stir until ingredients are incorporated. Pour the mixture into a glass and enjoy!
  • Use chocolate ice cream: For a double-chocolate flavor, use a good-quality chocolate ice cream instead of vanilla. 
  • Thin it out: Malts are supposed to be thick and spoonable, but if you’d like it thinner, add a touch more milk or blend for longer.
  • Add some mix-ins: Garnish your malt with a big swirl of whipped cream, a drizzle more of chocolate sauce, and a handful of small candies like miniature chocolate chips, chopped peanut butter cups, or crushed chocolate cookies. Or top with a handful of malted milk balls like Whoppers®!
  • Garnish the glass: For a fancy, diner feel, grab a tall milkshake glass and drizzle chocolate or caramel sauce inside around the base of the glass before filling it up with the Malted Milkshake.

Image of the Malted Milkshake ready to be served

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Malted Milkshakes are best enjoyed right after being made! If the quantity won’t be consumed shortly after being made, we’d recommend cutting the recipe in half or thirds — it scales down (or up) very nicely!

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Malted Milkshake

5 from 1 vote
A rich, thick, and creamy Malted Milkshake makes for the most delicious dessert and it couldn't be much easier to make! Toss a few ingredients into a blender, let it whirl, and enjoy a malt good enough to rival even the best old-fashioned diner!
This recipe scales up or down easily! -- Note 1
Print Recipe

Malted Milkshake

5 from 1 vote
A rich, thick, and creamy Malted Milkshake makes for the most delicious dessert and it couldn't be much easier to make! Toss a few ingredients into a blender, let it whirl, and enjoy a malt good enough to rival even the best old-fashioned diner!
This recipe scales up or down easily! -- Note 1
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword Malted Milkshake
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 4 malts
Calories 992kcal
Cost $7.12

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons (90g) whole milk
  • 3/4 cup (73g) malted milk powder Note 2
  • Tiny pinch fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
  • 5 tablespoons (107g) chocolate syrup
  • 1 container (1.5 quart (1.42L)) good-quality vanilla ice cream Note 3
  • Optional: whipped cream

Instructions

  • PREP: Chill glasses (See Note 4).
  • BLEND: In a high-powered blender, combine the milk, malted milk powder, salt, vanilla, and chocolate syrup. Blend until smooth. Next, add in the ice cream and blend until just incorporated. Don't over blend, as that will thin out the malt.
  • SERVE: Pour the malt into a cold glass and if desired, top with whipped cream and any other toppings of your choice.

Video

Recipe Notes

Note 1: Quantity: As written, this recipe makes 4 good-sized malts. If you'd like to scale down, divide the recipe in half or thirds. To make 1 malt, here are the quantities: 2 tablespoons milk, 1/4 cup milk powder, tiniest pinch of salt, 1/4 teaspoon vanilla, 1-1/2 tablespoons chocolate syrup, and 1/2 quart (1/2L) (2 packed cups) ice cream. 
Note 2: Malted milk powder: For a chocolate malted milkshake, use chocolate milk powder. For vanilla or different flavor malt, use vanilla/original milk powder. Leave out the chocolate sauce or replace it with caramel sauce for a vanilla malted milkshake.
Note 3: Ice cream: The ice cream forms the base of this malt, so it's important to get good-quality ice cream. Our favorite to use is Tillamook's Vanilla Bean. And yes, we use the entire container of ice cream! 
Note 4: Cold glasses: Before starting the Malted Milkshake, put the malt glass(es) in the freezer to get them cold.
Nutrition information will vary, depending on the brand of ice cream you use.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 992kcal | Carbohydrates: 129g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 44g | Saturated Fat: 27g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 169mg | Sodium: 487mg | Potassium: 1115mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 107g | Vitamin A: 1629IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 614mg | Iron: 1mg

We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed.

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