The 8 Best Dairy-Free Ice Creams

Two years ago I went dairy-free, and this presented me with many challenges: a queso loving, ice cream eating, cereal indulging high school student who, at the time, could not imagine a world without parmesan cheese on her pasta or whipped cream on her pumpkin pie. Now, I still have a huge sweet tooth, so by far the hardest thing for me to give up is ice cream. It was life changing when I discovered you can go dairy-free and STILL EAT ICE CREAM. I am continuously on the hunt for the best substitute to quench my ice cream cravings and this is my go-to list right now.

Talenti sorbetto Cold Brew Coffee

Now I am a BIG coffee girl. Starbucks has single handedly drained my food dollars, and this ice cream does not disappoint in coffee flavor. Talenti calls this “sorbetto” which means it is ice based, and I don't know how they do it, but it is smooth and creamy in texture. While this dessert is pricey, it delivers on all accounts of decadent and delicious.


Ben and Jerry's Caramel Almond Brittle

This ice cream is for the ultimate sweets fanatic. While not overflowing in caramel flavor, the swirl adds that perfect hint of richness, and the almond brittle adds just the right amount of crunch. If you are not a big fan of nuts, don’t fret because I refuse to eat a nut (peanut, cashew, almond, literally any nut -- I just don’t like the flavor). But the incorporation of almond brittle combined with the caramel and creamy almond milk base is delicious.


Jeni’s Splendid Cold Brew with Coconut Cream

Okay, now if you like coconut you will LOVE this ice cream. The swirl of cold brew flavored ice cream is so rich and decadent with the light coconut “cream” is pure bliss. I’m not gonna lie I bought a pint of this at the beginning of the summer and ate half in one sitting (it was THAT good). Jeni’s is a shop with locations in Charlotte, Atlanta, Charleston and other major cities in the U.S. They also sell pints at Harris Teeter and Publix.

Lowes foods Raspberry Sorbet

So for anyone who says sorbet is not as good as ice-cream, I’m so sorry but I have to beg to differ. Sometimes you just need something light, fruity, and when it’s done right, tart. I did not live in Winston before coming to Wake, but I was very familiar with Lowe’s Foods. Their raspberry sorbet cartons are great. It is light and not too icy, and the raspberry makes my lips pucker. There is raspberry syrup swirled in and hey, it’s fruity so it’s healthy right?


Harris Teeter (Strawberry, Mango, or Blood Orange) Sorbet

This sorbet is very different from the Lowe’s Foods brand because it is much icier, but I love it nonetheless. It comes in a variety of flavors depending on whether you like something more tart or more tropical. These sorbets are great as a light, late night snack.

Ben and Jerry’s Peanut Butter Half Baked

Okay, so I’m gonna be real with y’all, one of my favorite combos is Peanut Butter and ice-cream. I know that that is so weird, but when I was younger, my friend and I split an ice cream sundae that had the biggest glob of peanut butter on top, and ever since it has been a go to favorite for me. This ice cream does not let you down with the peanut butter flavor and the chunks of brownie and cookie dough. Your taste buds can’t help but go crazy. 

Jeni’s Splendid Frose Sorbet

This might be the best sorbet I have had hands down. It is smooth with fruity notes with the perfect balance of tart and sweet. It has strong, bright flavors like pear. it is super refreshing. On late night ice cream runs during the summer, this was the perfect close to a day.

Talenti Sorbetto Alphonso Mango 

Okay, so for all you Demon Deacons out there, the POD carries this sorbetto which is the bomb dot com. I love mango, and this mango explosion of a dessert truly slaps. I keep a pint of this in my freezer back in my dorm and it is the perfect way to treat myself after a week of midterms, a million and one club meetings, and trying to find time to go to ZSR in the  midst.


I hope this list of dairy free ice cream options has been enlightening for all my fellow lactose free friends and opened the minds of others to trying something different -- because the pluses of these brands and flavors are that they taste just like real ice cream. I scream you scream we all scream for dairy-free ice cream!