Whether it's a classic one-scoop cone or an epic sundae experience, complete with hot fudge, bananas, nuts, fruit, whipped cream and sprinkles, Phoenicians love their ice cream.
No matter where you’re at, a local-approved sweet treat is just around the corner thanks to these ice cream shops and parlors scooping up some of the best frozen desserts in town. Here's where to find some of the best ice cream spots in Phoenix.
Named among the top 10 ice cream shops in the country by Bon Appetit, Sweet Republic elevates ice cream to a culinary art — which is precisely how co-owner Jan Wichayanuparp landed a fellowship sponsored by the James Beard Foundation. Using local, all-natural ingredients, the shop churns out some of the most inventive flavors around. While the menu changes seasonally, tried-and-true standbys include the Salted Butter Caramel Swirl, Madagascar Vanilla and Belgian Chocolate. Stop by for new flavors including Strawberry Balsamic Pepper, Sweet Corn and Breakfast Cookie.
This California custom ice cream-sandwich classic opened several locations in Greater Phoenix — and boy are we grateful. Mix and match your sandwich top and bottom from cookie, brownie and doughnut options, load it with ice cream and toppings, and ask to get your treat hot-pressed to warm up the doughy outside.
At Melt, the culinary teams of Jobot Coffee and Superstition Farms’ Udder Delights craft some of the best ice cream in town. Open from noon to midnight—prime cool treat time in Phoenix—Melt offers artisan ice cream flavors ranging from chocolate and vanilla bean to fresas con crema and cookie monster. But the specialty flavors, including ghost pepper and habanero white chocolate swirl, and RumChata, are where it's at.
333 E Roosevelt St., Phoenix
Deep in the heart of the Grand Avenue Arts District, Novel Ice Cream brings a novel twist to the delicious, yet run-of-the-mill serving of ice cream. Rather than having it in a cone, why not have it served in a doughnut ? One of Novel’s signature offerings, the Dough Melt is a glazed doughnut stuffed with ice cream. Flavors range from classic vanilla and strawberry to Hangry Honey Bee (salted sweet cream, raw honey, chocolate covered honeycomb) and Midnight Munchies (caramel-swirled butterfat ice cream with crunchy pretzels, M&Ms and Cracker Jacks).
1028 Grand Ave., Phoenix
Time-hop back to the Phoenix in the 1950s and ’60s when “greasers” and “pink ladies” cruised along Seventh Street and often stopped at MacAlpine’s for ice-cream sodas, egg creams, and milkshakes. Complete with old-time soda fountain, the central Phoenix hangout is the perfect place to stop for a cool treat on a hot summer day. For an authentic experience, try one of MacAlpine’s classic ice cream sodas. With more than 40 creations to choose from—including the Ol’ Fashioned, Velvet Elvis, and the Red, White and Blueberry—you’ll think you’d have died and gone to ice cream heaven.
2303 N. Seventh St., Phoenix
Putting a scientific spin on your favorite cold treat is Creamistry, where “creamologists” use liquid nitrogen set at minus -321 degrees to produce creamy, premium ice cream. First, choose your base (premium, organic, sorbet and vegan), then pick your flavor (everything from chocolate to matcha green tea), then choose your toppings (unicorn dust, anyone?). For the ultimate experience, upgrade your masterpiece with a waffle or brownie bowl. The build-your-own format allows you to play “mad scientist” and create the ice cream of your dreams.
If you have fond memories of eating freshly-churned ice cream on a hot summer day, Churn is guaranteed to bring those sweet times back to life. Tucked in a 1940s red brick building on Central Avenue, the nostalgic ice cream shop with a modern edge offers a vast array of flavors made with simple and fresh ingredients. Seasonal offerings and such classics as peanut butter and butter pecan deliver decadent and creamy flavor, but it's the ice cream vessels that take things over the top. Churn will build you an ice cream sandwich on homemade cookies or scoop you selections into a pretzel cone.
5223 N. Central Ave., Phoenix
Imagine blocks of ice shaved into snow-like mounds and topped with everything from flavored syrups to condensed milk to fresh fruit. Specializing in a cross between ice cream and shaved ice, Snoh Ice Shavery uses a special process that combines fresh extracts and natural ingredients that are frozen, cured and shaved to perfection. Dig into one of Snoh’s combo cups, such as the Lychee Lover (lychee snoh, fruit and jelly, with strawberry puree) or the Purple Rain (taro snoh, taro pudding, almond cookies and condensed milk).
914 E. Camelback Road, Phoenix
Handcrafted, locally-sourced, gourmet ice cream is just the start at this Scottsdale shop. Try the signature cookie cup, a treat made of layers of your choice of ice cream flavor sandwiched between fresh macarons and topped with a toasted marshmallow. If you're feeling less adventurous, there's cones and bowls—and cone bowls—to fill with scoops of their many selections. Seasonal flavors, ranging from red velvet and Captain Crunch to chocolate cake and whiskey Irish cream rotate weekly (sorbet and gelato, too)
1608 N. Miller Road, Ste. 5, Scottsdale
The idea for a vegan ice cream shop emerged from the restaurant’s infamous organic ice cream treat: the tSoynami. These now-famous vegan treats start with homemade soy tSoft tServe, then combines with such goodies as cakes, cookies, chocolate, peanut butter, fruit and just about anything else you can think of. The restaurant’s bakers and baristas pour their hearts into each and every creation (and the list of selections is long). In addition to ice cream, Nami offers vegan baked treats and organic, shade-grown coffee. About 75% of Nami’s ingredients are organic and treats are served in biodegradable cups, boxes and flatware when possible.
2014 N. Seventh St., Phoenix