The Vegetarian Resource Group Blog

Vegan Ice Cream Showdown

Posted on March 28, 2017 by The VRG Blog Editor


By Natalie Allen, VRG Intern
When I decided to conduct a vegan ice cream taste test, I didn’t realize how hard it would be to taste them in an official setting before all the ice cream was eaten. It took me a few weeks before I could round up a few friends, all at different times, to taste-test three vegan ice creams. I chose Talenti Chocolate Sorbetto, So Delicious Coconut Milk Cookie Dough ice cream, and So Delicious Cashew Milk Creamy Chocolate ice cream. I chose these frozen desserts because they represent three different kinds of vegan ice cream, one made with no non-dairy milk, one made with coconut milk, and one made with cashew milk. So Delicious is also known in my vegan community as one of the biggest plant based companies and so by buying the unique flavors that were made by So Delicious, I knew that they would be a legit representation of vegan ice cream.

Before I had my friends taste the ice cream flavors, I had to taste them myself. The first ice cream I tried was the Talenti Chocolate Sorbetto. The sorbetto had a very rich chocolate flavor and was surprisingly slightly creamy considering it was made with essentially just water and sugar. The So Delicious Coconut Milk Cookie Dough ice cream I assumed is meant to be creamy, is actually crumbly and almost icy. The cookie dough chunks are delicious, but the vanilla ice cream has a strong coconut flavor that did not pair well with the cookie dough chunks. Lastly, So Delicious Cashew Milk Creamy Chocolate ice cream was very creamy. The chocolate flavor is not very strong but I believe that this chocolate ice cream resembles the texture and flavor of dairy ice cream the most.

Overall, as a vegan, I can say that I felt Talenti won this taste-test. This is surprising considering So Delicious specializes in making non-dairy ice cream and Talenti has a wide variety of both dairy and nondairy desserts. Talenti did an amazing job at creating a satisfying chocolate dessert, while So Delicious recreated dairy ice cream with unique flavor combinations and an undeniably creamy texture. Go for Talenti if you have an extreme chocolate craving and try out So Delicious’s adventurous and mouth-watering flavors if you are in the mood for something different.

For my official taste-test, I had two of my non-vegan friends taste test each of the previously mentioned flavors. The first friend I interviewed was my 16-year old friend Kasey. Kasey and I essentially have the same flavor preferences. Kasey verified my belief that the So Delicious Cashew Milk Creamy Chocolate ice cream was the one that tastes the closest and if not exactly like dairy ice cream by saying, “I swear this tastes like real ice cream, but it does have a slight nut flavor.” Kasey was not fond of the So Delicious Coconut Milk Cookie Dough ice cream. For Kasey, the Talenti Chocolate Sorbetto ice cream won, “This is better than real ice cream.” In fact, after Kasey had left the taste-test, she went to buy herself a pint.

A 19-year old Madison was my next taste-test victim. Madison’s taste buds were a little different from Kasey and mine. Madison honestly liked every ice cream. However, her favorite was the So Delicious Coconut milk Cookie Dough ice cream. She asked: “Can I have some more?” This is perhaps because cookie dough ice cream is her favorite. Although Kasey and I did not like it, I am impressed that So Delicious was able to create a non-dairy cookie dough ice cream flavor that was able to please a cookie dough ice cream fanatic.

In the end, non-dairy ice cream has taken over. Big ice cream companies including Ben and Jerry’s and even Breyers have come out with vegan ice cream flavors marketed not only towards vegans but towards their giant dairy ice cream lover audience. It is astounding that these vegan ice cream flavors are able to please regular dairy ice cream fanatics. What this taste-test has shown me is that non-dairy ice cream options are comparable to the original dairy verseions and often times better (Talenti). For any dairy ice cream lover out there, I challenge you to try a non-dairy ice cream and see if it is possible for you to switch and lead a more compassionate and earth-friendly diet.

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