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-try.
1. Minus Celsius Ice Cream
For starters, if you’re looking for fun no 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.
There’s 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
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
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
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!
Where: 240 Sullivan St.
6. Van Leeuwen’s
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
7. Tipsy Scoop
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
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
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.
Ice cream and fish might not sound like a palatable pair, but it sure works for this ice cream shop that started in Little Italy and now has locations in Chinatown, Williamsburg and Flushing. Taiyaki's distinctive fish-shaped waffle cones (taiyaki translates to “fried fish”) are filled with delicious ice cream. Try flavors like black sesame or matcha on top of red bean custard filling and underneath toppings like sprinkles, crushed Oreos and wafers.
Where: 119 Baxter St, New York, NY 10013