It’s May as this was being written, and summer is fast approaching. That inevitably means baseball, holiday vacations, and the increased popularity of frozen treats like ice cream.
But then again, in places like Texas and Florida, it sometimes feels like summer lasts a lot longer than the dictionary definition of a US summer. In these places, ice cream treats never really go down in popularity. Heck, even in places like Minnesota, some folks will enjoy ice cream all year long.
But where do you go when you’re in the mood for some ice cream? What should you order? To make sure you’re getting the best of the fast-food ice cream options, here are some exceptional choices:
Mint Chocolate Chip, Baskin Robbins
It’s only right to start the list with Baskin Robbins, since everyone knows about Baskin Robbins. It’s been around since 1945 and now has become the largest chain of ice cream specialty shops in the world.
And you know what they say about any item of fast-food—you get something from a shop that specializes in that something. In this case, if you want ice cream, then Baskin Robbins is definitely a good choice. It’s what they’re known for, after all.
The brand delights in offering many different flavors, and even in their early history they were offering a different ice cream flavor for each day of the month. Today, they have more than 1,300 different ice cream flavors in their impressive library.
The Mint Chocolate Chip is a great choice. Its green color is natural (check out the color of mint leaves in nature), and they don’t use artificial dyes. While other mint options from other ice cream brands seem to taste like mouthwash, it’s different here. The mint level is just right, so you’re actually enjoying and not merely tolerating the flavor.
The somewhat sweet flecks of the chocolate also add a nice balance to the custard flavor, and you do have lots of chocolate chunks to savor. This is one treat that must try, especially in the summer afternoons.
Ice Cream Sundae, Culver’s
Culver’s offers lots of different frozen treats. They have their unique “Concrete Mixers”, along with floats, malts, shakes, and frozen custard in cones and dishes (with $2.29 for single scoop ice cream).
Actually, with the burgers, sandwiches, soups, and other treats here, Culver’s is like the mecca of comfort food. And you can include the sundaes to that list. It may be criminally underrated, but you’ll like it once you get a taste. It’s one of those comfort food options you’ll appreciate when you’re suffering from heartbreak or you just want to snuggle with a blanket on your couch while you enjoy your favorite TV shows.
The sundae from Culver’s is totally customizable. Start with either vanilla or chocolate ice cream, and then pick from 1 to 3 scoops. Then check out the humungous list of possible toppings (we counted at least 33 of them), with categories such as Ooey Gooey (e.g., hot fudge), Chunky (Eli’s Butter Cake), Fruit (wild cherries), Nuts (pecans), and Candies (Snickers).
Pair your ice cream sundae with chicken fingers, and it’s a great time for you to just sit back and enjoy.
Oreo Blizzard, Dairy Queen
Just about everyone who has ever been to Dairy Queen know that the Blizzard is the very best item on the Dairy Queen menu. That’s not even a question. It’s like debating who the greatest hockey player is of all time—you have to wonder about the sanity of someone who proposes a name other than Gretzky.
Yes, the Dairy Queen Blizzard doesn’t exactly fit the FDA definition of iced cream, but that doesn’t really matter. The Blizzard may not be ice cream, but it’s just great, and you can just pick any flavor you want.
If you’re undecided about the flavor, then start with the classic Oreo Cookie Blizzard. It’s part of most lists of the best Blizzard flavors, even though it’s a rather simple recipe. You start with the vanilla soft serve ice cream at the base, and then you blend in the chocolate Oreo cookies with its creamy center. The cookie crumbles stay firm instead of soggy, because it’s not just on the top.
Peanut Butter Cup Perfection, Cold Stone Creamery
Cold Stone Creamery offers shakes, iced coffee, smoothies, pies, and ice cream cakes. But their main focus has always been premium ice cream, made with about 13% butterfat (give or take a percent). It has spread its 1,300 locations throughout 20 countries worldwide.
It’s true that the prices here may be a bit higher than in other ice cream parlors. But so what? It’s worth the extra expense, since Cold Stone Creamery is notoriously generous when it comes to their portion sizes. Even when you opt for a small order, their servers just give you a lot more than you expect at no extra charge.
As to what flavor you should get, go with the Peanut Butter Cup Perfection if you haven’t tried it yet. Once you do try it, then it will likely be your go-to flavor afterwards. You just don’t go wrong with chocolate ice cream with peanut butter, Reese’s peanut butter cup, and fudge.