There is something creative about soft ice cream. It’s the sweet summer treat that makes Chicago’s cold winters worth it. It’s the cover for a long day at the beach and the perfect dessert for a delicious summer barbecue. Simply put, smooth, rich and soft ice cream is the perfect dessert to enjoy after a long day in the warm summer sun and in Chicago there are plenty of great places that offer some of the best soft serve money can buy.
Sure, Ben & Jerry’s is a fire, but put down a pint, don’t even bother handling a McDonald’s ice cream machine and head to one of these six locations around Chicago for the best soft serve possible to round out your warm summer day.
3472 W Devon Ave, Lincolnwood, IL 60712
A staple on Chicago’s northwest side, no soft serve is quite like Dairy Star. The store’s founders transformed what was once the Dairy Queen into the place we know and love today. For 37 years, Dairy Star has been making some of the best soft food in three distinct flavors: vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry. Although these may sound typical, the amount of toppings and mixes to choose from is what sets Dairy Star apart from the rest. Get your cone wrapped in Reese’s chunks, dipped in candy, or indulged in a loaded “star” split. Any choice you make in Dairy Star will be a good choice.
2815 W Armitage Ave, Chicago, IL 60647
grilled burgers, fries, and hand-milkshakes; This is the meal we have been waiting for. At The Freeze in Logan Square, the sweet, sour cream has been shed since 1950, and the community keeps coming back for more! Besides the classic cone, you can also order sundaes, parfaits, malts, and floats. Here, you will not only find a variety of flavors and soft blends, but also your favorite grilled items. Chicken, sausage, and Rib-eye steaks make up the menu, but we’re sure you won’t forget the dessert when you stop at The Freeze.
1159 W Taylor Street, Chicago, Illinois 60607
1632 W Division St, Chicago, IL 60622
When you’re looking for a twist on the classic dessert, check out koremo. With two locations, Wicker Park and UIC, a trip to Koremo is closer than you think. The flavors on the menu are always alternating, which makes the trip even more exciting. Some of the earlier flavors include pineapple, banana, cereal milk, and Thai iced tea. Koremo has also partnered with another Chicago favorite, Aya Pastry, to offer customers exquisite desserts and lighter serving styles. Koremo is not only a must-visit place on your summer vacation list, but it is definitely one to see. We totally expect to see new locations pop up all over Chicagoland!
2009 N Bissell Street, Chicago, Illinois 60614
If you know anything about Annette, it’s probably about the delicious homemade Italian ice. But, did you know that they also provide soft service? Whether it’s in a cup or cone, you have endless options of toppings to add to your dish. From waffle cones to crushed Oreos to fresh strawberries, at Annette you can take dessert to the next level. When you want to mix up desserts, you can also add a few softshells to your favorite Italian ice flavors for a more crunchy finish for a classic Italian treat.
1436 Black Hawk Street, Chicago, Illinois 60642
Everyone should be able to enjoy soft ice cream, and at Vaca Vegan Creamery, that’s exactly what you get. While traditional ice cream recipes call for whole milk, cream, and dry milk powder, Vacas Creamery Ice Cream is made with oat milk. Oat milk, a non-dairy and vegan-friendly alternative to cow’s milk, is known for its creamy and salty flavors, making it the perfect alternative to regular milk. In Vaca, you will find soft food in two flavors: chocolate and vanilla. To add some excitement to your visit, try one of their signature sundae, available in Chocolate-y s’mores or Cosmic Cake.
1047 W Madison Street, Chicago, Illinois 60607
At Cone Gourmet Ice Cream in the West Loop, the options for how to style your soft serve are endless. As the only ice cream shop in Chicago with an “Irish flair,” you can be sure anything you sink your teeth into will be unique and delicious. Looking for something a little different? Try Cone O’Flakes, delicious soft vanilla served with a crunchy, crumbly Irish chocolate bar. To enjoy everyone’s favorite cereal, try shamrock. Served soft ice cream whipped up in Lucky Charms, you really can’t go wrong.