2023 Vegan Ice Cream Guide - Brands & Recipes | The Green Loot

2023 Vegan Ice Cream Guide – Brands & Recipes

We all scream for (vegan) ice cream! There are so many varieties of vegan ice cream suitable for all preferences, diets, and paletes. Find out where to find vegan ice cream near you, which brands are vegan, and discover your new favorite ice cream.

Vegan Ice Cream Guide

What is vegan ice cream made of?

Vegan ice cream can be made out of all kinds of plant-based ingredients including soy, nuts, coconut, oats, and legume protein. Each ice cream base, along with the other ingredients, delivers a different texture and flavor. For example, coconut ice cream is very smooth and creamy, but often has a hint of coconut flavor that can enhance or clash with other ingredients in the ice cream. Nut-based ice cream like almond and cashew has an airy and sometimes gritty texture, but offers a neutral base so the flavor of the ice cream shines.

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Is vegan ice cream healthier?

Typically, yes, vegan ice cream is healthier than its dairy counterpart, but this depends on your personal definition of healthy. Vegan ice cream is cholesterol free while dairy ice cream contains cholesterol, which is linked to higher rates of heart disease. Most plant-based ice cream ingredients contain healthy fats like monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Some vegan ice cream contains high levels of refined sugar, but dairy free ice cream usually does as well.

Are ice cream cones vegan?

Many ice cream cones like sugar cones and wafer cones are usually vegan, but be sure to double check the ingredients. Some ice cream cones may contain eggs or dairy, especially handmade cones and chocolate-dipped cones in ice cream shops. Waffle cones are the type of cone most likely to contain eggs, but some brands are vegan.

Is vegan ice cream dairy free?

Yes, all vegan ice cream is dairy free. A vegan diet excludes all animal products, including dairy like milk, cheese, cream, and yogurt. However, not all dairy-free ice cream is vegan since it may contain other non-vegan ingredients like eggs or honey.

Is gelato vegan?

Most gelato is not vegan, but some gelato shops and store bought gelato brands offer vegan options made with ingredients like soy, oats, coconut, or nuts. Gelato is a type of Italian ice cream with lower fat content than traditional ice cream, so most gelato still contains milk and cream.

Where can I buy vegan ice cream?

Vegan ice cream is readily available at most well-stocked local supermarkets, natural food stores, Whole Foods, general merchandise retailers like Target and Walmart, and even some convenience stores.

In addition to brand name ice creams, many places have created their own line of dairy-free vegan ice cream sold under their store brand, so you’ll have to check your local store to see what you can find.


If you’re lucky enough to live near a vegan ice cream parlor, or an ice cream shop that offers vegan varieties, you can try all kinds of unique vegan ice cream!


Target sells many of the leading brands of vegan ice cream including Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy, So Delicious, Oatly, and more! They offer vegan ice cream bars under their store brand, Favorite Day, in delectable flavors like Vanilla Salted Caramel & Macadamia Nut and Peanut Butter.


Walmart sells most vegan ice cream brands that are available nationwide like Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy, So Delicious, Breyer’s, and some smaller brands, depending on location. Check your local store for options.

Whole Foods

Whole Foods sells a wide variety of vegan ice cream, including some of the smaller independent brands like NadaMoo!, Van Leeuwen, and Cosmic Bliss. They also sell almond-based vegan ice cream under their store brand, 365.


Just like most of its products, Aldi sells their store brand ice cream at an affordable price. Check your local Aldi for vegan pints, ice cream sandwiches, and ice cream bars from the vegan and vegetarian Earth Grown line.

Trader Joes

Trader Joes is known for their affordable organic prepared foods, fun atmosphere, and seasonal product launches. Keep an eye out for dairy-free frozen dessert options like Hold the Dairy Vegan Mini Cones, Strawberry Oat Ice Cream with Candied Almond Brittle, Vegan Mint & Chip Bon Bons, and soy-based vegan ice cream quarts in flavors like Cherry Chip and Vanilla.

Local supermarkets

Many regional grocery stores sell vegan ice cream under their store brand, so check your local supermarket to see what you can find. 

Some of these options include:

-Open Nature Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert (available at Safeway in various states and Jewel in Illinois)

-Publix Premium Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert (available at Publix in Florida and Georgia)

-Simple Truth Oatmilk Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert (available at Kroger in various states and Mariano’s in Illinois)

-Good Graces Plant-Based Ice Cream (available at Hy-Vee in the Midwest)

Instacart and other grocery delivery services

While Instacart and other grocery delivery services simply collect all of the available products at stores near you in one place, it can be a good way to see which stores near you sell vegan ice cream. Order some for delivery with your next grocery order, or see which stores have the best options.

Best Brands

  1. Ben & Jerry’s

The iconic Vermont-based brand offers a full lineup of dairy-free vegan ice cream made with almond milk or sunflower butter in many of their classic flavors from Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough to Cherry Garcia®. Ben & Jerry’s has collaborated with celebrities on ice cream flavors so be sure to pick up a pint of Mint Chocolate Chance™ or Colin Kaepernick’s Change the Whirled™ next time you have a craving.

Where to buy: Target, Whole Foods, Walmart, most local supermarkets, Ben & Jerry’s Scoop Shops

  1. So Delicious

So Delicious offers a wide range of dairy-free frozen desserts made with all types of bases like coconut, oats, soy, almond, cashew, and Wondermilk, which is a blend of plant-based proteins, nuts, and oils that deliver a creamy texture. Their frozen dessert product lineup includes ice cream, ice cream bars, ice cream sandwiches, and toppings like Coco Whip, a coconut-based Cool Whip alternative.

Where to buy: Target, Whole Foods, Walmart, most local supermarkets

  1. Oatly

Oatly is a Swedish company that makes dairy alternatives using oats. The company was started in the 1990s by a food scientist, but their products just became popularized in the US in recent years when the company went public. Be sure to check out their vegan oat-based ice cream flavors which include traditional flavors like Chocolate, Vanilla, and Strawberry, as well as more indulgent flavors like Salted Caramel and Fudge Brownie. 

Where to buy: Target, Whole Foods, Walmart, most local supermarkets

  1. NadaMoo!

NadaMoo! is a 100% vegan frozen dessert brand serving up coconut-based ice creams and other desserts made with high quality ingredients and natural sweeteners. Try a pint of Rockiest Road (a vegan take on rocky road, a chocolate ice cream with nuts and marshmallows), Caramel Cold Brew & Cookies (coffee ice cream with caramel ribbons and cookie pieces) or one of their Frozen Snack Bites that come in enticing flavors like Orange Crème and Salted Caramel.

Where to buy: Target, Whole Foods, Walmart, most local supermarkets

  1. Breyer’s

Breyer’s ice cream company has been around since the 1800s and their products are widely distributed across the United States. Most of their ice cream flavors contain dairy, but they offer 4 tasty vegan ice cream flavors made with almond milk: Chocolate Chocolate Chip, Mint Chocolate Chip, Vanilla Peanut Butter Swirl, and Cookies & Creme.

Where to buy: Target, Kroger/Mariano’s, some local supermarkets

  1. Cado

Cado uses a unique ingredient for their ice cream: avocado! The avocado base allows for a rich, creamy texture and the neutral flavor of the avocado allows the flavor of the ice cream to shine. All of their products are vegan, soy free, gluten free, and contain organic ingredients whenever possible. Try a classic flavor like Vanilla Bean or Deep Dark Chocolate, or one of the more adventurous flavors like Java Chip or Cherry Amaretto, complete with the healthy fats and creamy texture of avocado! 

Where to buy: Target, local supermarkets

  1. Van Leeuwen

New York-based Van Leeuwen is known for their high-quality, artisanal ice creams, and their vegan options are no exception. Each of their vegan ice cream flavors are made with a different blend of ice cream bases including coconut, oat milk, cocoa butter, and cashews so the flavors and texture complement the ice cream flavor. They offer their pints in grocery stores around the US so anyone can indulge in flavors like Churros & Fudge (dark brown sugar oat and coconut-based ice cream with pieces of vegan churro), Cookie Crumble Strawberry Jam (cashew, coconut, and cocoa butter-based Tahitian vanilla ice cream with strawberries and gluten-free vegan cookie crumbles), and Oat Milk Brown Sugar Cookie (dark brownie sugar oat, coconut, and cocoa butter-based ice cream with cookie dough, candied oat clusters, and brownie chunks).

Where to buy: Whole Foods, many local supermarkets, Van Leeuwen website

  1. Alden’s Organic

Alden’s Organic is an Oregon-based organic ice cream brand that offers a robust selection of vegan, dairy-free flavors. Grab a pint of Peanut Butter Chip, or one of their vegan ice cream bars or sandwiches. All of Alden’s Organic products are certified USDA organic, GMO free, and free of artificial flavors.

Where to buy: natural food markets, select local supermarkets

  1. Cosmic Bliss

Cosmic Bliss offers a selection of vegan coconut-based ice creams that are USDA certified organic and GMO free. They have fun flavors with names like Mint Chip Galactica, Infinite Coconut, and Golden Banana Brownie Swirl. Cosmic Bliss was formerly known as the 100% vegan brand Coconut Bliss, but they now make dairy ice cream, so be sure to select the plant-based options.

Where to buy: Whole Foods, natural food markets, select local supermarkets

  1. Eclipse Foods

Eclipse Foods is a vegan ice cream brand that claims to make products indistinguishable from dairy ice cream using a proprietary blend of plant-based proteins and fats that mimic the molecular structure of dairy. Their pints come in punchy neon colors and boast indulgent flavors like Cookie Butter, Caramel Butter Pecan, and Mango Passionfruit.

Where to buy: select Whole Foods, Eclipse website

Best Sugar-Free Vegan Ice Cream

  1. So Delicious No Sugar Added

So Delicious makes several vegan ice cream flavors that contain no added sugar. This coconut-based line is sweetened with erythritol (a sugar alcohol), stevia, and monk fruit extract. The flavors include the basics like Chocolate and Vanilla Bean, and more indulgent flavors like Butter Pecan and Mint Chip.

Where to buy: Target, Whole Foods, Walmart, most local supermarkets

  1. MUD Dairy-Free Frozen Dessert

MUD Dairy-Free Frozen Dessert makes vegan ice cream sweetened with dates instead of refined sugar. It comes in several delicious flavors including Cookie Dough Chip, Chocolate Brownie Fudge, and Muddy Monkey, which is banana based. MUD does not use any sugar alcohols or artificial sweeteners.

Where to buy: select Whole Foods locations, Sprouts, independent natural food stores

  1. NadaMoo!

While not 100% sugar-free, Nadamoo! offers a line of no sugar added ice creams with flavors like Maple Pecan, Vanilla, and Chocolate. They are sweetened with a combination of tapioca syrup, monk fruit, and erythritol.

Where to buy: Target, Whole Foods, Walmart, most local supermarkets

Best Vegan Ice Cream Places in the US

  1. Vaca’s Creamery (Chicago, IL)

Vaca’s Vegan Creamery is a totally vegan ice cream shop that serves oat-based soft serve, sundaes, and milkshakes, all with fun addons like vegan M&Ms, brownie bites, and streusel. Try one of their signature sundaes like the Candy Bar (your choice of ice cream topped with peanut butter caramel, chocolate shell, and chopped peanuts) or Inner Child (your choice of ice cream topped with confetti cookie dough, strawberry sauce, and vegan sprinkles), or make your own sweet concoction. Their location in Bucktown is open seasonally and has a walk up window—a quintessential summer experience you can now enjoy as a vegan! 

  1. Frankie & Jo’s (Seattle, WA; Portland, OR)

Frankie & Jo’s started in Seattle to bring delicious and magical ice cream to customers without harming animals. You can stop by one of their shops to order a scoop of one of their whimsical flavors like California Cabin (smoked vanilla and pine coconut and oat-based ice cream with black pepper cardamom shortbread pieces) or Black Sesame Fudge (black sesame coconut and oat-based ice cream with black sesame fudge and caramel swirls). 

Not in the Pacific Northwest? Frankie & Jo’s ships select flavors nationwide from their online shop.

  1. Dear Bella Creamery (Los Angeles, CA)

Dear Bella Creamery is a vegan ice cream shop started by two best friends in California. They offer all kinds of frozen treats from scoops, pints, and shakes to ice cream cakes and ice cream sandwiches. Their flavors, many of which are inspired by their Taiwanese roots, rotate quarterly with options like ​​Chrysanthemum Pu-erh (ice cream infused with its namesake tea), Cookie Monsta (blue ice cream with cookie pieces, just like the beloved Sesame Street character), Taiwanese Pineapple Cake (a creamy ice cream with chunks of pineapple cake), and Birthday Cake (vanilla with sprinkles).

  1. Whipped Urban Dessert Lab (New York, NY)

Whipped Urban Dessert Lab is located in the Lower East Side of Manhattan serving up soft serve, to-go pints, truffles, tarts, and cakes. They’re the first vegan ice cream shop to sell exclusively oat-based frozen desserts. Some standout flavors include Cinnamon Apple Crisp and Coffee Waffle Crunch. 

Not in New York? No problem! You can order a pint of Oaté, their signature hard scoop ice cream, a frozen tart, or chocolate truffles from their website.

  1. Like No Udder (Providence, RI)

Like No Udder started as the world’s first vegan soft serve food truck and now has a brick and mortar shop where you can enjoy vegan ice cream and other treats to your heart’s content! Enjoy a classic oat and soy-based soft serve cone, milkshake, ice cream sandwich, or Unicorn, Like No Udder’s take on Dairy Queen’s Blizzard. Don’t forget about the toppings—choose from all kinds of syrups, sauces, sprinkles, and more!

How to make vegan ice cream

If you have an ice cream maker or want to try an alternative method of churning ice cream, try one of these homemade vegan ice cream recipes. There is a recipe for everyone’s favorite flavor, as well as ice cream treats like sandwiches, cakes, and bars.

  1. Vegan Ice Cream from New York Times
  2. Vegan Strawberry Ice Cream from Elavegan
  3. Vegan Chocolate Ice Cream from Minimalist Baker
  4. Double Chocolate Brownie Ice Cream from The Pretty Bee
  5. Vegan Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream from Rainbow Nourishments
  6. Vegan Salted Caramel Ice Cream from Loving It Vegan
  7. Vegan Coffee Ice Cream from Create Mindfully
  8. Dairy Free Chocolate Chip Ice Cream from Go Dairy Free
  9. Vegan Peanut Butter Ice Cream from Addicted to Dates
  10. Raspberry Coconut Ice Cream from Vegan Family Recipes
  11. Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream from The Banana Diaries
  12. Vegan Cookies and Cream Ice Cream from Urban Bliss Life
  13. Vegan Ice Cream Sandwiches from Make It Dairy Free
  14. Vegan Ice Cream Cake from World of Vegan
  15. Vegan Ice Cream Bars from Detoxinista

What is your favorite flavor of vegan ice cream?

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