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Food & Drink

10 Must-Try Ice Cream Shops In New York City

By Bianca Bahamondes

10 Must-Try Ice Cream Shops In New York City

It’s hot out in NYC, which means there’s one thing you absolutely must have in your hand at all times—ice cream!

There’s certainly no shortage of ice cream shops throughout the city, but there are quite a few that stand out from the crowd as summertime must-trys.

We’ve even made finding all of these deliciously sweet spots even easier by creating a map of all of them that you can save and turn to when you’re looking for a new ice cream shop to check out (just scroll to the bottom of this article!).

Our mapped out list has everything from the insect topping ice cream of La Newyorkina (don’t worry, they have other non-insect toppings too!) to the vegan ice cream at Van Leeuwen’s to the boozy sundaes of Tipsy Scoop:

1. Minus Celsius Ice Cream, Lower East Side

For starters, if you’re looking for fun scoops hand rolled ice cream, you should absolutely check out Minus Celsius Ice Cream on Grand Street where you can get this Thai specialty with SO many topping choices!

Where: 302 Grand St.

2. Snowdays, Bay Ridge

There’s also the ice cream that’s become more popular recently, the shaved cream from Snowdays. Drawing inspiration from Taiwanese and Korean shaved ice, Brooklyn’s Snowdays replaces water-based flavored ice for creamy, organic 1%-milk-based ice cream. Yum!

Where: 7025 3rd Ave, Brooklyn

3. Mikey Likes It, Lower East Side & Harlem

Mikey Likes It is owned by New York native Michael “Mikey” Cole, a master mixer of all things ice cream. He has created custom flavors for the likes of Hillary Clinton and Jay-Z, and will even make you your own if you ask! He uses fresh, locally-sourced ingredients to create the most delicious and original creations, like the “Brady Brunch” with banana pudding, Vienna Fingers, and crushed vanilla wafers. And don’t miss his ice cream waffle sandwiches! 

Where: Lower East Side at 199 Avenue A and 2500 Frederick Douglass Blvd in Harlem

4. Whipped Urban Dessert Lab, Lower East Side

The time has come! Oat milk ice cream is now a very real thing that you can get here in NYC. The Boston-based cake shop Whipped Urban Dessert Lab opened the world’s very first all-oat milk ice cream shoppe first on the Lower East Side, following a pop-up in Williamsburg. The idea behind this shop began with their popular oat milk soft serve in their Boston shop, and has now grown from a concept to a real place—and we’re so glad they chose to bring it to NYC.

Where: 95 Orchard St.

5. La Newyorkina, NoHo

This woman-owned Mexican sweets company serves delicious frozen treats like paletas (similar to ice pops), horchata milkshakes, and ice cream in mouthwatering flavors like tres leches and Mexican coffee-salted cajeta (caramel). Oh, and you can get your scoop topped with spicy crickets if you really want to!

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Where: 240 Sullivan St.

6. Van Leeuwen’s, Multiple Locations

Van Leeuwen is known for some of the creamiest artisan ice cream in the city, and has totally mastered the richest flavors that are completely vegan as well! We definitely have our eye on that caramelized banana praline.

Where: Multiple locations see here.

7. Tipsy Scoop, Kips Bay & Williamsburg

This liquor-infused ice cream shop, which “blends the magic of an artisanal, hand-crafted ice cream with the mastery of a perfectly mixed cocktail,” is continuing to sell its spiked ice cream sundaes, sandwiches and cakes to-go. Booze + sweets = quite a heavenly combination right about now.

Where: 217 East 26th St. in Manhattan & 270 Metropolitan Ave. in Brooklyn

8. Soft Swerve, Lower East Side

Although soft serve ice cream never really went away, it seems that there’s recently been a resurgence in its popularity. And Soft Swerve is one of NYC’s best, known as the city’s “yammiest ice cream shop” for how it uses the Southeast Asian ube yam to make a vibrant purple swirl! Other flavors include matcha green tea, black sesame, and frozen hot chocolate, with loads of equally colorful topping options.

Where: 379 3rd Ave & 85B Allen Street

9. Milk & Cream Cereal Bar, Little Italy

You can probably guess the theme of this ice cream joint! Serving up nostalgia at its finest, Milk & Cream specializes in blending cereal-infused ice cream with different toppings that are the perfect compliment to each flavor. How gorgeous is that Fruit Loops cone?

Where: 159 Mott St.

10. Big Gay Ice Cream, Multiple Locations

Big Gay Ice Cream started as an ice cream truck, and now has multiple locations in New York City and Philadelphia, a cookbook, and launched a limited run line of ice cream pints that are available in stores and markets from coast to coast. They’re known for their unexpected flavor combos for “both kids & for those of us who are kids at heart.”

Where: See location list here.

Here are these, plus 17 more, mapped!

See also: This Secret NYC Speakeasy Is Inside Of An Ice Cream Parlor


Also published on Medium.

Tags: summer, sweets