Our Editors’ Favorite Ice Creams for Summer
There’s something about ice cream in the summertime. Maybe it’s the hot-beyond-comfort weather that gets us craving something cold and sweet, or maybe it’s just the memories that come with it. Whether it’s just the tastiest treat ever or a sentimental taste tied to our youth, we all have that one ice cream that stands out as special. So with the upcoming Memorial Day weekend (i.e. the unofficial kick-off of summer activity) on the brain, we asked our staff to share their favorite ice creams. Here’s what they had to say.
Mint Chocolate Chip Mint
Chocolate chip is probably my hands-down, all-out, definitive favorite overall. It was the first flavor I really "branched out" with in terms of ice cream as a kid. I had to be about 5-years-old, and my grandparents took me and my brother to Dairy Queen (which was like a big, awesome deal to a kindergartener in my podunk hometown). And I'm sure I got like a regular chocolate dipped cone or whatever, but my nana convinced me to try a bite of her's—which was green. This was the big intrigue factor with her scoop of mint chocolate chip, a frozen dairy oddity I hadn’t previously been exposed to. Anyway, I have no idea why, but trying that bite of curious (and delicious) green ice cream made me feel so mature and sophisticated, and excited about the fact that I tried something "grown-up" and it was really good. I loved it, and I still very much do. My favorite brands for mint chocolate chip now are Talenti and Häagen-Dazs.
-Darcy Lenz, editor, MyRecipes.com
Creole Creamery’s Champagne Violette
The Creole Creamery’s Champagne Violette. It’s champagne and candied violet—a little bit fizzy and super delicious. And I mean, it just sounds delicious. The perfect thing to eat when it's 10,000 degrees with 4,000% humidity. I also like Jeni's riesling and pear sorbet. I used to get it after going to baseball games in Ohio. We would stand around outside and chat with friends while it melted. It tastes (really) like the ripest pears you can find. -Kaylee Hammonds, associate social media editor, Cooking Light
I have many opinions about ice cream. But my favorite summer ice cream is the classic Chipwich. I only really find myself buying it on summer road trips or at the movie theater. Logistically, it makes literally no sense to eat at the movies because it's messy, and usually gone before the previews are even over. But if you live in Florida, and have spent the whole day loitering at the outdoor strip mall before the showtime in 95 degree heat and 95% humidity (like you do when you're a 13-year-old on summer break), it's the ideal treat.
-Antara Sinha, associate social media editor, MyRecipes.com
Jeni’s Backyard Mint
My go-to ice cream is mint chocolate chip. I don’t know why. I don’t have any idea why I love it so much, but I do. I’ll eat any kind of it, from the glowing-fake green stuff, to the higher-end brands. But the hands-down best mint ice cream I ever had was at a Jeni’s Ice Cream shop in Columbus, Ohio, and it was called “Backyard Mint” and I just asked for some chocolate bits on top. It was so fresh tasting.
-Chris Michel, editor, CookingLight.com
Bruster’s Butter Pecan
My favorite ice cream is butter pecan from Bruster's. This is the to-go ice cream place in Atlanta. It was always a fun Sunday treat to get a waffle cone filled with chewy pecan pieces in the middle of buttery-caramel flavored ice cream.
Briana Riddock, fellow, MyRecipes.com
-Jaime Ritter, associate editor, CookingLight.com
Ben & Jerry’s Half Baked
In high school, my best friends and I had a friday night tradition of a movie, then Ben & Jerry’s afterwards (we were real wild). I could never decide between my two favorite flavors — chocolate fudge brownie and chocolate chip cookie dough. On one visit, I noticed a new flavor that combined them both—and this was undoubtedly one of the greatest discoveries of my youth.
-Elizabeth Laseter, SEO writer, CookingLight.com
Ben & Jerry’s Oat of This Swirled
My personal favorite is Ben & Jerry’s oat of this swirled. Honestly, you don't even need the chocolate. It's unreal.
-Ashley Kappel, digital content manager, food desk
Baskin Robbins Daiquiri Ice
I grew up in a boring Memphis suburb, so the most exciting thing for me ever was our whole family trips on summer evenings to sit at one of the two rickety, sticky plastic tables outside our local Baskin Robbins. Even better was when they had Daiquiri Ice. It’s basically a sweet lime sorbet, and even though I don’t eat a lot of Baskin Robbins anymore, sometimes when the sun’s almost down & the cicadas are out, I get the most intense craving for it.
-Katie Akin, fellow, Cooking Light
Good Humor Chocolate Eclair
I grew up in Jersey, so most summers were spent with long weekends at Long Beach Island. One of my fondest memories is waiting for the ice cream truck to pull up, so I could run through the sand barefoot to buy my family their favorite treats. The truck drove up the entire stretch of the island, stopping at each section you could walk onto the beach. The driver would walk up to the edge of the sand and ring a bell to let sunbathers know the truck had hit their stretch of the beach. The Good Humor chocolate eclair just reminds me of those long summer days and childhood. It’s still my go-to treat if I ever see an ice cream truck.
-Arielle Weg, fellow, Cooking Light Diet
Disney World’s Kitchen Sink
Walt Disney World is a dream enough as is, but as someone who spent four years living in Florida and heading to the parks monthly, there's one experience I'll never forget—heading to the Beach Club resort to take on the Kitchen Sink. At Beaches & Cream, you'll feel like you've somehow slipped back into the '50s when you sit down inside the charmingly retro "soda" shop. But when a system of sirens go off and the lights dim when servers bring out more than 20 scoops of five different ice creams smothered in every topping the store has, you'll remember you're definitely there for the 'gram—and some great laughs. Hands down, my greatest ice cream memory ever, and yes, it tasted delicious.
-Zee Krstic, assistant editor, CookingLight.com