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The Best Ice Cream in Los Angeles

The all-year summer-like weather means ice cream is always a good idea. And thankfully, Los Angeles knows a thing or two about the cold dessert. From gelato and ice cream to custard and frozen yogurt (froyo if you must), here are our picks for the best of the best in the LA area.

photo: Dolly Llama

Dolly Llama
This shop may have a bit more emphasis on the waffle cone but that doesn’t mean we can resist these frozen desserts and creations. The Bubble Waffle batter that they use produces both a crispy and custardy texture that is then coiled into a cone, given a generous scoop of ice cream and then dressed with unlimited toppings. #FOMO is real with this dessert and remember #YOLO.

273 S. Western Ave.
Los Angeles
Online: thedollyllamala.com

photo: Salt & Straw via Facebook

Salt & Straw
This Portland import is famous for their locally based crazy-but-delicious flavors like peanut butter and pickles, beet red velvet cake and more, so going there is an exploration in gastronomic delights. Of course, you can also get more tame flavors like chocolate gooey brownie, and roasted strawberry coconut.

Locations: West Hollywood, Arts District, Studio City, Venice and Larchmont
Online: saltandstraw.com

photo: McConnell’s via Facebook

McConnell’s Ice Cream

Santa Barbara’s finest opened its first shop in Los Angeles at the Grand Central Market and we have been ecstatic ever since. Of course the market is a perfect reason to come for lunch, but now there’s even more reason to stay for dessert before exploring downtown LA with the kids.

Grand Market
317 Broadway
Downtown LA
Online: mcconnells.com

photo: @cynthiaparkhurst via @littledamage

Little Damage
The small, family-owned business may draw its inspiration from the rich cultural fabric of Los Angeles but it has become a drawn unto itself thanks to Instagram. Located downtown, expect long lines but it’s totally worth the wait. The soft-serve ice cream is made in small batches and the menu changes regularly.

700 S. Spring St.
Downtown LA
Online: littledamage.com

photo: Churro Borough

Churro Borough
Originally launched as a gorilla-style pop-up shop, Sylvia Yoo’s churro ice cream sammies can now be found fulltime at her shop in Los Feliz. With flavors like Horchata, Mexican Hot Chocolate, Vanilla Custard and Spanish Coffee and seasonal treats like Orange Creamsicle and Caramel Apple Pie, all sandwiched between crispy-chewy, cinnamony-sugary shells, this is a treat worth stopping at whether you are in the area or just need an excuse to head to this part of town.

1726 N. Vermont Ave.
Los Feliz
Online: churroborough.com

photo: Kippy’s Ice Cream via Facebook 

Kippy’s Ice Cream
Tired of your juice cleanse? Kippy’s offers an ice cream cleanse. It’s not as crazy as it sounds, because Kippy’s is raw organic non-dairy coconut-based ice cream sweetened with raw honey. It’s also dairy, soy, nut and gluten-free. And yummy! So if anyone in your family has any dietary restrictions, or if you just need a sweet treat that doesn’t make you feel too gluttonous, the new Kippy’s in Venice is the place for you. Cleanse not required.

326 Lincoln Blvd.
Venice
Online: kippysicecream.com

photo: LeTania Kirkland Smith

Small Batch
Small Batch on Venice Blvd. is the creation of Top Chef Brooke Williamson and her husband/business partner, Nick Roberts. This artisanal shop offers freshly made ice cream made in, you guessed it, small batches. From raspberry sorbet to Horchata Ice cream, everyone in the family is bound to find a flavor that hits the spot. And, never fear, there are sprinkles in a variety of kid-pleasing colors. Head to the back patio to worry less about drips and spills.

12222 Venice Blvd.
Mar Vista
Online: smallbatchicecreamery.com

photoGeorge M. via Yelp

Ginger’s Divine Ice Cream
Located in Culver City, Ginger’s is a retro-meets-ice cream paradise with plenty of modern-day vegan and dairy-free flavors. Get experimental with the cones, cookie sandwiches or pops or stay pure with just a scoop or two of the fresh mint chip and Amadeus vanilla. Want to give your taste buds a ride? Try their equally delicious blueberry sweet corn or ginger cinnamon flavors.

12550 Washington Blvd.
Culver City
Online: gingersicecreams.com

photo: N’ice Cream via Facebook

N’Ice Cream Homemade Gelato & Sorbet
Hankering for the flavor of homemade ice cream? N’ice Cream makes their fresh custard, gelato, sorbets and frozen yogurt daily, with organic milk and fresh, locally grown fruit. Real strawberries, actual pineapple, and vanilla bean wind their way in these creamy concoctions. The menu changes weekly.

12746 W. Jefferson Blvd. #2160
Playa Vista
Online: nicecreampv.com

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—Andie Huber

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