The Absolute Best Ice Cream Shop in Every State
When you’re not hitting the bottom of a Halo Top pint in the comfort of your couch, going out for a cone can be a real treat. Your eyes are met with a cornucopia of colorful tubs taunting you behind a glass case while your nostrils overflow with aromas like browned butter and milky cream. At that very moment, your only consternation is choosing a flavor.
Whether your cravings drive you to the Carvel down the block or the hipstery artisan shop farther in town, we’ve discovered the closest consensus to which ice cream shop reigns supreme in every state. Is your go-to shop is the most popular in your hometown? To come to these findings, we consulted Yelp—which ranked the most popular ice cream shops in every state by collecting data on the number of reviews and star ratings. Read on to discover the winners!
Chocolate Corner & Ice Cream (Gulf Shores, Alabama)
Nestled in a wildlife-bustling shore town on Alabama’s Gulf Coast, Chocolate Corner & Ice Cream lures you in with homemade chocolates, fudge cups, and the to-die-for Bluebell ice cream. Go for the gooey Gulf S’mores in a cup or opt for the ultra-indulgent Buttered & Covered in a sugar cone.
Wild Scoops (Anchorage, Alaska)
This small-town microcreamery crafts its treats in small batches in its dedicated test kitchen using local ingredients and lots of love. During the short summer months, seasonal picks include the floral Fireweed and Rhubarb Crumble with ribbons of Anchorage-born jam while it offers comforting classics all year around. Locals can agree that it’s never too cold for a cone.
Novel Ice Cream (Phoenix, Arizona)
Whether we choose to consult our virtual oracle or take a trip to the Grand Canyon State informs us that this five-star-rated shop is as novel as its name implies. The hidden gem jam-packs European-style waffles and glazed doughnuts with its artisanal scoops ranging from Butterbeer to Chai Tea.
Tacker’s Shake Shack (Marion, Arkansas)
After you’ve scarfed down one of Tacker’s stacked burgers and a side of fried pickles with ranch, round out your meal with a melt-in-your-mouth milkshake. The family-owned diner has been serving the classic American combo for over 40 years, and is continuing to drive in adventurous visitors and Marion locals alike.
Paradis Sherman Oaks (Los Angeles, California)
Paradis traces its lineage back to Denmark, where it began crafting fresh ice cream in 2000. All of their flavors contain zero artificial ingredients, and the vegan picks are just as indulgent as the dairy-full scoops. Grab a checkerboard and spoon into marshmallow ice cream in this rustic, wood-paneled shop.
Louie’s Ice Cream Shoppe (Buena Vista, Colorado)
Whether you’re bringing Fido along or just rather enjoy Colorado’s crisp air, grab a seat outdoors in this small shop’s charming backyard oasis. After you’ve tested your decisiveness against 20 gourmet ice cream flavors, channel your inner child by enjoying your cone on a swing or taking a seat in the sand box while the sugar rush hits.
UConn Dairy Bar (Storrs Mansfield, Connecticut)
You know an ice cream shop will blow its competition out of the park if it originated out of an old-school creamery. UConn Dairy Bar bottled its homemade milk for almost a century and opened in 1953 to sell its dairy goodies. Fast forward to the 21st century, and the factory has been churning out ice cream by the masses—a sweet process visitors can watch via the observation window. You’ll want to save a few licks for the show.
Vanderwende’s (Bridgeville, Delaware)
If you’re en route to Ocean City or Dewey beach, a Vanderwende’s pit stop is a must. Every flavor from the Cappuccino Crunch to Annie’s Apple Pie is hand-crafted in their dairy farm. If you’ve got a few minutes to spare, grab a seat on the bench a la mode and watch the grazing cows out front.
The Magic Cow (Davie, Florida)
The home of the Museum of Ice Cream pop-up also houses one of the best ice cream shops in the nation. “I came here for the first time two years ago and have been coming back with friends and family ever since,” Yelper Victoria F. raves. “They have so many flavors and all of them are amazing! This little mom and pop shop is way better than any of the ice cream chains nearby.”
Scream’n Nuts (Alpharetta, Georgia)
Whether your primary source of energy is caffeine or sugar, Scream’n Nuts has you covered with affogato and a plethora of both frozen and piping hot treats. Grab a fresh-out-the-oven doughnut cone topped with your go-to flavor or recharge with a doughnut pudding drizzled with salted caramel and adorned with a refreshing scoop.
One Aloha Shave Ice (Kailua-Kona, Hawaii)
Beat the heat on the Big Island and stop by One Aloha Shave Ice for a sweet frozen treat that’s lighter than the traditional scoop. Try the refreshing coconut shaved ice, which features real fruity flakes throughout, or go for the exotic lychee.
Panhandle Cone & Coffee (Sandpoint, Idaho)
Why not pair a cup of Joe with a cup of Mill Town Vanilla? Panhandle uses locally-distilled light rum from Mill Town Distillery to create a one-of-a-kind vanilla extract that lends the blend an unforgettable flavor. If you’re more of a cocoa guy or gal, go for the single-origin chocolate ice cream that hails from tropical Tanzania.
Bistro 6050 (Chicago, Illinois)
Pregame a deep dish with Bistro 6050’s renowned frozen desserts in flavors like Ferrero Rocher and Creamy Coconut in Chi-town. Feeling ambitious? Try the shop’s jackfruit ice cream or a cinnamon-spiked horchata milkshake.
Sundae’s Ice Cream & Coffee (Indianapolis, Indiana)
Regardless of your craving for crunch, candy, fruit, or traditionalism, Sundae’s has a scoop for every hankering. Yelpers rave about the Graham Central Station, a flavor that’ll transport you to either the bustling streets of New York or a cozy campfire. If you fancy coffee with your confection, this shop carries 18 different types of coffee beans for brewing galore.
The Classic Deli and Ice Cream Shoppe (Brooklyn, Iowa)
Yelpers pop into this charming deli and dessert stop for a roast beef on rye, homemade pies, and selection of scrumptious ‘screams. It’s situated in an inviting shopping center—the perfect place for a dessert break.
Sylas & Maddy’s Homemade Ice Cream (Olathe, Kansas)
In the heart of the heartland, you’ll find rolling plains, majestic rivers, and the tastiest ice cream in the state. Pair a sweet or savory flavor—or both—in a freshly-baked waffle cone for maximum indulgence. Pro tip: Your student ID can snag you a BOGO deal on Tuesdays.
Crank & Boom Ice Cream Lounge (Lexington, Kentucky)
After discovering that Thai fare pairs well with coconut ice cream, founders Mike and Toa went on a whim to start churning more flavors and serving them alongside their restaurant’s aromatic Asian dishes. After a few successful years of cranking out the cream using fruits and dairy from neighboring, the dedicated ice cream shop opened doors in 2015.
Ice Cream 504 (New Orleans, Louisiana)
Culture meets cuisine in New Orleans’ bustling Freret Street, a true gastronomic dream. While the eight-block walk is studded with live music, an array of shopping stores, and finger-licking food, you’ll also find Ice Cream 504. Take a break from strolling and dive into homemade blueberry basil ice cream or a nectar snoball.
Rococo Ice Cream (Kennebunkport, Maine)
Rococo’s has a flavor to suit any taste preference, but you’re going to want to crouch of out your comfort zone in this dessert shop. The lighthouse-spotted state’s favorite ice cream place is treasured for testing valiant flavor combinations such as woodsy pine, sea salt, and juicy blueberries in its test kitchen. Or perhaps the on-the-menu Goat Cheese with Whiskey & Figs Compote is more up your alley.
Daily Scoop (Pasadena, Maryland)
Milkshakes, malts, banana splits, sundaes, and single scoops make this shop the go-to for crushing cravings. “The owner is the mad scientist of the ice cream world,” Jessica G yelps. “The staff will urge you to try as many flavors as you want before making a choice. Really, you can’t go wrong with whatever you decide, but my favorite is the praline.”
The Ice Cream Barn (Swansea, Massachusetts)
What started out as a family farm is now the home of one of New England’s prime dessert shops. Yelpers rave about licking up enormous scoops while viewing the livestock on the farm across. “I got the strawberry and coffee milk flavor. Coffee milk is unique to the region but other people also recommended the berry flavors. The sundaes looked delicious and the waffle cones had a good crunch,” Bijou N. states.
Pekadill’s (Whitehall, Michigan)
If you’re lunching at Whitehall, Pekadill’s makes a mean French dip you can follow up with a hot fudge sundae. The family-owned shop has been serving up lunch and treats in its backyard garden complete with a waterfall and koi pond since the 1980s.
Flapdoodles Homemade Ice Cream (Rochester, Minnesota)
Flapdoodles’ quaint shop clad with quirky wall quotes and rows of homemade flavors will lure you in whether you’re cruising down Route 52 en route to Wisconsin or staying local. Fun fact: the shop is named after the founder’s father’s—who was an ice cream aficionado—first sailboat.
Area 51 Ice Cream (Hernando, Mississippi)
While you won’t find any extraterrestrial visitors lurking in this Hernando-based parlor, you will get a taste of some out-of-this-world flavors. Test your palate against Area 51’s Saigon Cinnamon Snickerdoodle or the Bourbon Butter Pecan.
Betty Rae’s Ice Cream (Kansas City, Missouri)
“I had a double scoop in a homemade waffle cone,” Yelper Bobby N. recounts his experience. “Brown butter and toasted pecans and a scoop of goat cheese with apricots and candied walnuts. Hands down, some of the best ice cream I’ve ever had. Very rich. Nice mouth feel. Very well-balanced. You can certainly tell you aren’t eating some basic b**** ice cream from the grocery store.” Okay, we’re sold.
Sweet Peaks (Whitefish, Montana)
Treat yourself to Sweet Peak’s seasonal Montana Christmas with pine-soaked cream and huckleberries or spoon into time-honored Lafaza Madagascar Vanilla. The parlor’s commitment to quality ingredients and outlandish flavors since the debut of its first location in Whitefish in 2010.
Coneflower Creamery (Omaha, Nebraska)
This Omaha farm-to-cone creamery serves up both traditional, seasonal, and local scoops crafted with the freshest ingredients. Their Salted Caramel flavor features ingredients from a coffee shop across the street. And the rainbow sprinkles? Baked in-house! You’re in for a real treat.
Scoups Ice Cream & Soup Bar (Carson City, Nevada)
Don’t drive out of the desert state without indulging in Scoup’s famous desserts. Beat Nevadad’s temperamental temperatures with a double scoop, a nostalgia-piquing float, or a warming bisque in a flaky bread bowl. This little shop in Carson City will keep you both cool and cozy.
Bailey’s Bubble (Wolfeboro, New Hampshire)
“We had German chocolate cake (the best of what we had. If in doubt, have this!), Moose Tracks, and a Kahlua coffee option,” Yelper Tom H. recommends. “All totally delicious and nice to have overlooking the lake in the sunshine (or even in winter, I would eat this ice-cream!).”
Halo Farm (Marlton, New Jersey)
Ice cream doesn’t get more farm-to-table than this. Based in Lawrenceville, Princeton, and Hamilton Square, NJ, Halo Farm serves up antibiotic-free, hormone-free scoops with taste-tempting flavors like Amaretto with Toasted Almond, M&Ms and Peanuts and Strawberry chocolate chunk. We’ll take two scoops, please!
The Paleta Bar (Albuquerque, New Mexico)
The Paleta Bar serves none other than popsicles—but these snacks on a stick aren’t like anything you’d find in your grocery’s freezer aisle. The shop lets you build your own gourmet Mexican ‘sicle with bases including Avocado and Strawberry Cream Cheese and then choose your chocolate, and pile on the toppings.
Alleyway Ice Cream (Saugerties, New York)
Handmade in the Catskill mountains, Alleyway is definitely worth the pit stop whenever you’re heading up north. Their delicious assortment of ice cream includes vegan options, too. From sweet potato ice cream with maple glazed walnuts to honeycomb ice cream with a chocolate swirl, you can’t go wrong with any of the choices.
Surfin’ Spoon (Nags Head, North Carolina)
Wrap up a surfing sesh with a visit to Nags Head’s most popular ice cream parlor, which is a stone throw away from the shore. Surfin’ Spoon keeps it light with frozen yogurt, sorbet, and steps up the decadence with gelato.
Tea and Crepe (Fargo, North Dakota)
Tea and Crepe specializes in Thai rolled ice cream, so prepare to watch and be amazed. Yelpers salivate over the textured taro pieces in the Purple Haze and opt for topping their creations with graham crackers and colorful mochi.
Mitchell’s Homemade Ice Cream (Cleveland, Ohio)
With its theater-esque awning and bright, welcoming logo, you can’t miss Mitchell’s. The shop prides itself in sourcing ingredients from around the globe and even discloses each pick’s origin on their website. While the berries and rhubarb are organic and local, the coffee beans hail from Indonesia and South America, and the cocoa’s both from the Ivory Coast and Ghana.
Rose Rock Microcreamery (Tulsa, Oklahoma)
Rose Rock creates small batches of ice cream with some of Tulsa’s finest local ingredients. If you ever pay them a visit, you’ll find unique flavors like lavender honey, chamomile peach and strawberry candied pecans. Stop by for a cone, and you’ll walk out not wanting to store-bought tubs again.
Hurry Back Ice Cream (Portland, Oregon)
Hurry Back ice cream isn’t afraid to be bold with their flavors. You’ll find everything from bourbon-flavored ice cream to mandarin chocolate and ligonberry. Don’t think your cone is extra enough? Choose from their amazing selection of chocolate or rainbow sprinkles, whipped cream, and chocolate or caramel sauce.
Antney’s (Monroeville, Pennsylvania)
You’ll find everything from sundaes and shakes to froyo, sorbet, and floats on Antney’s menu. Italian sweet cheese, coconut, stracciatella, and baklava
Tricycle Ice Cream (North Providence, Rhode Island)
Since 2014, Tricycle ice cream has been traveling the streets of Providence to deliver ice cream sandwiches, tacos (yes, really) and push-up pops. Whether you’re a fan of rich, decadent chocolate flavors or prefer something light and fruity, Tricycle has something for everyone. You just have to catch it when it comes!
Melt (North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina)
If you’re vacationing in Myrtle Beach anytime soon, swing by Melt to cool off and devour one of their mouth-watering cones. Strawberry cheesecake, salted bananas foster, orange blossom, and cherry vanilla are some of the unique and robust flavors you’ll find at Melt.
Leone’s Creamery (Sioux Falls, South Dakota)
Leone’s Creamery prides itself with using fresh, local ingredients in its ice cream. You’ll find Crow Peak Brewing’s porter and Sunrise Hive’s honey in their delectable frozen desserts. Just like the ice cream, their cones are also made in-house and are GMO- and gluten-free. Enjoy scoops of the peanut butter and jelly, cinnamon oat graham, and blackberry basil.
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream (Cookeville, Tennessee)
You’ve probably seen pints of Jeni’s at the grocery store, but lucky for Nashville, they have a shop of her award-winning ice cream. Before the trend of using wholesome ingredients, Jeni pioneered the way of using dairy from grass-fed cows and nixed synthetic flavorings.
Manolis Ice Cream, Pastries & Cake (Austin, Texas)
If you’ve got a sweet tooth, Manolis is definitely where you want to be. From ice cream to pops, to cakes, all of your sugar needs will be met. But their ice cream is unmatched. Dulce de leche is both sweet and salty while mint chocolate chip is refreshing yet chocolatey. Grab a spoon—or your own cone—because it’s something you might not want to share!
Moab Garage (Saint George, Utah)
Once you’re done hiking through the breathtaking mountaintops in Moab, pop in for a cone at Moab Garage. You’ll find delicious flavors like chocolate peanut butter pretzel, cake batter, honey lavender, and espresso chip. Not in the mood for ice cream? They also have pastries, sandwiches, and salads.
TJ Buckley’s (Shelburne, Vermont)
Ben & Jerry’s isn’t the only place to grab an ice cream cone in Vermont. TJ Buckley’s is home to some of the best gelato. From ginger to chipotle chocolate to Tahitian vanilla, each cone or cup is served with a tuile wafer.
Island Creamery (Alexandria, Virginia)
All of Island Creamery’s ice cream is homemade in small batches and is made with milk from Lancaster County’s cows, so you know it’s fresh. Their delicious scoops include birthday cake, vanilla butterscotch, java jolt, and pumpkin pie. If you’re hosting a birthday party, they also have ice cream cakes.
Sweet Necessities (Yakima, Washington)
Whether you’re craving chocolate, cake or ice cream, Sweet Necessities has it all. Lick a split of the kahlua almond fudge and huckleberry ice creams—you won’t regret it!
Dairy Creme Corner (Hurricane, West Virginia)
The next time you’re in Fairmont, stop by the Dairy Creme Corner a cone, milkshake, malt, float, or lemonade. Enjoy flavors like banana split, birthday cake, and chocolate cherry.
Mocha Moment (Fitchburg, Wisconsin)
Janesville is the unofficial dairy capital of the country, so it’s no wonder that Mocha Moment is home to one of the best ice cream shops in the U.S. Try out their mocha (duh), green tea, vanilla, and chocolate flavors.
Devils Tower View (Devils Tower, Wyoming)
For the best comfort food eats, head to Devils Tower View, where you’ll find the best ice cream in town.