Summer may be over but it’s never a bad time for ice cream; even if you don’t regularly reach for a pint once the temperature drops, you’ll at least need a scoop or two for your autumn apple desserts and pumpkin pies.
And sure, you could grab a generic carton from the grocery store or dash to the corner store to satisfy that craving, but sometimes you simply need something a little more special.
Enter some of the best ice cream shops currently shipping pints of ice cream around the country. And we’re not just talking about a mere container of vanilla. These beloved parlors are here to serve you more than just the staples, slinging flavors like Earl Grey tea and tequila chocolate mole directly to your door. Here are some of our favorite ways to get our gourmet ice cream fix from afar.
New York City’s innovative parlor, helmed by ice cream wizard Nicholas Morgenstern, is known for an array of funky and eclectic flavors, from favorites like burnt sage and black licorice to a whole section that’s a study in bananas, boasting flavors like charred banana and banana curry. The menu includes 88 flavors (all available to ship!), and while you’re at it, you can also add ice cream cakes and sandwiches to your cart.
Graeter’s Ice Cream
This fifth-generation family-run ice cream business in Cincinnati, Ohio, has been in operation since 1870, so they certainly know a thing or two about the warm weather staple. Flavors here are an ode to that classic nostalgia (think butter pecan and peanut butter chocolate chip), and if you’re getting a shipment, you can create your own pack or choose from an already curated gift selection. Make it a party and throw in a few jars of the housemade raspberry and butterscotch sauces. You can also order through Goldbelly.
A Seattle, Washington institution, Frankie & Jo’s specializes in plant-based ice cream — meaning all of the ice cream is 100% vegan. Expect flavors like salty caramel ash, mint brownie and chocolate date, all of which can be shipped across the country if you don’t happen to live near a Seattle scoop shop.
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream
Fan favorite Jeni’s was born in Columbus, Ohio, but the brand now boasts locations in over 10 states. Jeni’s has long dabbled in nationwide shipping, and these times are no different. Orders require a minimum of four pints (that shouldn’t be too hard to maneuver), with flavors running the gamut from gooey butter cake to coffee with cream and sugar — not to mention seasonal flavors like pumpkin cake roll. Know an ice cream fanatic? Sign them up for Jeni’s pint club, a subscription that delivers four pints of Jeni’s, four times a year.
McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream
This third-generation family business (that’s been around for 70 years!) has a number of scoop shops in Southern California, but if you’re not in the area, you can also order the beloved creamy flavors online. Pick pints like eureka lemon and marionberries, sea salt cream and cookies and peppermint stick, and if you really can’t stop throwing pints in your cart, consider opting for a 3-, 6- or 12-month membership.
Van Leeuwen has mastered classic American flavors, eschewing extraneous add-ins for the simple pleasure of an unadorned creamy scoop. The Brooklyn-based company also flaunts a host of vegan flavors, often crafted out of a cashew or oat milk base. Expect flavors like cookies and cream, Earl Grey tea and Sicilian pistachio, squeezed into single colorblocked pints. It’s also available through Goldbelly.
Ample Hills Creamery
The Brooklyn-born Ample Hills is known for over-the-top ice cream and sorbet, often studded with housemade cookies and candies. Order directly through the website, where you’ll be prompted to choose four or six flavors, like The Munchies (pretzel-infused ice cream with crushed Ritz crackers, potato chips, pretzels and M&M’s) and Nonna D’s Oatmeal Lace (dark brown sugar and cinnamon ice cream swirled with oatmeal lace cookies).
Salt & Straw
Salt & Straw’s ice cream is crafted in Oregon — built from local and sustainable ingredients — and has become something of a staple on the West Coast. For now, the rest of the country will have to rely on weekly shipments, where fun and innovative flavors reign, like honey lavender and strawberry honey balsamic with black pepper. Look for seasonal spins too, like applesauce cake with cream cheese frosting. Create your own selection, or nab one of the pre-curated packs.
St. Louis, Missouri’s Clementine’s Creamery operates in both the naughty and nice spheres: The naughty flavors are infused with alcohol, while the nice ones eschew booze for your traditional ice cream ingredients. You’ll find a host of alcohol-spiked flavors, like chocolate infused with cabernet, as well as flavors that are odes to classic cocktails (think a Manhattan, but in ice cream form, fueled by sweet vermouth, tart cherry juice and vanilla). Nice flavors run the gamut from Italian butter cookie to salted crack caramel.
As the name suggests, Tipsy Scoop is all about the alcohol, which is infused into every inventive flavor — think dark chocolate whiskey salted caramel and cake batter vodka martini. You can order directly from the shop for local delivery and pickup in New York, but some flavors are also available nationwide through Goldbelly. Pick your own pints or go for curated collections like the Get Lit Birthday Party Pack.
Seasonal and artisanal ice cream is the move at Lick Honest Ice Creams, an Austin, Texas institution. The hip flavors can be delivered nationwide, thanks to Goldbelly, where you can choose from scoops like dark chocolate, olive oil and sea salt, and roasted beets and fresh mint. Looking for something other than scoops? Opt for the ice cream sandwiches, bound by a handmade chocolate cake cookie. You can also order directly from the shop for local delivery.
This Omaha, Nebraska ice cream vendor — a fan favorite on “Shark Tank” — crafts a slew of bestselling flavors, like mint cookie crunch, sea salt caramel brownie and s’mores, but the company also allows customers to design their own flavor from a slew of bases and mix-ins. Just select your base (gelato, sorbet or ice cream) and flavor, then toss in up to three mix-ins, which includes everything from fruits and nuts to candy and bakery items.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.