Orlando, Florida. Hot summer days are upon us, and keeping calm is the first thing on everyone’s mind.
That’s why former President Ronald Reagan designated the third Sunday in July as National Ice Cream Day in 1984.
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Reagan’s ad described ice cream as a “nutritious and healthy food.” Whether nutritionists agree with that is another matter, but one can’t help but associate ice cream with happy memories and good feelings, so in a world turning upside down, an ice cream cone can feel incredibly beneficial.
Obviously, Americans love ice cream. The International Dairy Food Association said the average American eats about 4 gallons of ice cream annually.
So if you want to celebrate National Ice Cream Day this Sunday, here are a few places in the Orlando area that specialize in this favorite frozen treat.
Abracadabra Ice Cream Factory – 520 N Main Street, Kissimmee
This magical ice cream place lets you choose a base (including the sugar-free and lactose-free options), a few toppings, and—and through the magic of liquid nitrogen—makes ice cream just for you. This downtown Kissimmee cafe for kids is known for its on-site rocking houses for paying customers and birthday party packages.
Paseo – 8734 Lee Vista Blvd. , Orlando
Bright colours, Instagram-worthy ice cream, and Italian coffee are all on display at Orlando’s Bacio Ice Cream Shop, not far from Orlando International Airport. The store has gluten-free, dairy-free, and sugar-free options, which means this store will surely please your entire audience.
Frutamix – 253 Ocoee Apopka Road, Ocoee
Sweet and savory Mexican cuisine are the stars of this small but popular store in Ocoee. With birria tacos and elotes, be sure to pick up some ice cream – they have so many flavours. Grab scoops in a cup or cone, try Fresas con Nutella or have a Paletta (ice cream pop!).
Engine cavity in – 212 S. Orange Blossom Trail, Orlando
This historic, family-run, soft-service store is no frills but much loved for its sweets and inclusive nature. So it was a shock when someone set fire to a small ice cream shop earlier this year.
However, the owners, with the help of the community, are preparing to reopen on Monday, July 18. It’s a day after National Ice Cream Day, but who’s to say you can’t celebrate a day late?
The Greenery Creamery Two locations in Orlando and Sanford
This premium ice cream shop makes locally sourced dairy and vegan ice cream in small batches and premium flavors swirl. This month, for example, The Greenery Creamery is serving up a strawberry yuzu lemonade smoothie, key lime pie and milk and cookies, to name a few. They even have ice cream flavors for dogs!
Ice and Bites Café – 3402 220 Tech Blvd., Orlando
Taiyaki is popular at this University of Central Florida restaurant. Fill a fish-shaped cake with ice cream and fun toppings like Pocky sticks and fruit skewers.
Not in the mood for tiyaki? Grab your ice cream in a glass, or try the cloud-avogato – ice cream and a double shot of espresso, topped with cotton candy. They have a full menu of regular food too, along with Sno Bowls and boba tea.
Homemade Kelly Ice Cream – Multiple locations
You simply can’t leave Kelly’s off any list of Orlando ice cream parlors. This mom-and-pop store started as a food truck visiting markets and events before the first store opened in Audubon Park in 2015. They’ve since expanded, with five stores throughout Orange County and in Oviedo, plus counter service at Foxtail Coffee locations too. That’s a lot of ice cream!
Speaking of which, Kelly’s features classic flavors, some originals like Cookie Monster and Banana Pudding, and a selection of signature seasonal flavors, which you can add to cups, cones, and sundaes. Kelly’s says it has about 100 ice cream recipes rotated throughout the year, so you never know what you’ll find when you walk into their office.
In honor of National Ice Cream Day, Kelly’s is offering buy one, get one free scoop of ice cream in cups or cones at participating locations.
Martin’s Dreamery Creamery and Coffee House – County Road 1945. 419, Suite 1151, Oviedo
Martin’s is a family owned shop that specializes in ice cream but also baked goods (like Keto Donuts!), breakfast sandwiches, and coffee. So it is open early in the morning. Is it too early to eat ice cream?
Martin’s makes all of their ice cream in-house, with six to eight regular flavors as well as rotating seasonal flavors like Key Lime and Bithlo Mud. Dairy-free options made with coconut milk are also available.
the master. Freezing Ice Cream Trucks – Multiple places
Is there anything that says summer more than an ice cream truck chase in the neighborhood? Those days are not over, guys. Not if Mr. Freeze can help her.
Mr. Freeze Ice Cream Trucks feature traditional soft serve ice cream and Italian ice cream, which can be added to soft drinks, soda floats and more. Mr. Freeze is largely available only for events, but they also run local tours around Orlando International Airport’s neighborhoods, such as Lake Nona, Lei Vista and the Goldenrod area.
Follow their social media to see where they’re going next.
Midnight Sun Ice Cream Sandwich Company – Multiple places
Handcrafted flavors sandwiched between two premium biscuits, all made to order. An Alaskan couple and his Florida wife teamed up to create the art of ice cream sandwiches inside a yellow truck. This isn’t your grandmother’s ice cream, unless your grandmother is into Malbec-Strawberry, Miso Butterscotch, or goat cheese ice cream.
And cookies – shortbread with pumpkin seeds, cashew macaroons, sweetened orange bread. Yes, they are fancy.
You can find Midnight Sun at food events around Central Florida.
Nan and Pop Ice Cream Shop 351 Ronald Reagan Street, Longwood
What do you do when kids fly into the nest and you’re alone again? These grandparents opened an ice cream shop and named their ice cream and bubble creations after their grandchildren. This is called scoring points. They also sell “weird shakes” filled with all kinds of goodies, and a sundae featuring Selma Cookie Company cookies.
wavo 3201 Corinne MD, Orlando
The News 6 Florida Foodie appeared in Wafu before they opened their new permanent space on the second floor of the East End Market. Wafu specializes in soft food in taiaki cones, but they also have waffle cones, and fancy toppings like mochi, Pocky, and Matcha Powder.
You can also have Taiyaki with sweet and savory fillings too.
West Orange Creamery 1575 Maguire Road. #101, Okoye
Everything about this place in Ocoee screams old-fashioned soda fountain, down to the wood accents, lighting, large mirror, and the fact that they sell Ricky Lemon Cherry Phosphate, made by “jerk of soda.” They also sell cream of eggs which are very interesting to people in the North.
Of course, this is a story about ice cream, so let’s touch on that. All classic ice creams are here, with free ‘Jimmies’ to order. They also sell extra premium milkshakes that are worth the gram.
Wondermade – 214 H 1 Sanford Street
The slogan for this store in downtown Sanford is “Love and Marshmallows,” but they also sell handcrafted ice cream that can go well with fancy marshmallows. Wondermade makes regular, vegan ice cream in classic rather than classic flavors, like cornbread, bacon, or — here’s a surprise — S’more.
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