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With pristine sandy beaches, turquoise blue waters, and warm tropical weather, it’s ice cream season in Hawaii at any time of the year. The best ice cream in Hawaii has choices for everyone from homemade ice cream, gelato, and sorbet to soft serve and the popular shaved ice.
Look no further than these splendid ice cream shops in this tropical paradise for mouthwatering frozen desserts.
Whether your favorite spots for a refreshing dessert in right on the beach in the afternoon sun or you like to satisfy your sweet tooth after dinner, stop by any ice cream shop on this list. I can assure you, you’ll be returning for more.
Best Places for Delicious Ice Cream in Hawaii
For super-premium ice cream, phenomenal coffee, and drool-worthy baked goods, Lappert’s ice cream offers some of the best. Having started with only vanilla and macadamia nut ice cream in 1983 by Austrian-born Walter Lappert, today, they have over two hundred flavors, their own coffee roasting facility, and also offer splendid baked goods.
Using only the finest ingredients, they make all their products fresh in small batches daily in Hanapepe, Kauai. If you cannot decide what flavors you’d like, they’ve thoughtfully included a ‘Can’t Decide’ option on their menu. You can try half-scoops of five different flavors in a waffle bowl.
Their must-try items include island-inspired ice creams like Kauai pie (coffee ice cream with macadamia nuts, chocolate fudge, coconut flakes, and vanilla cake crunch), Heavenly Hana (a creamy chocolate ice cream with white chocolate chunks and delicate marshmallow swirls), and Lava Tube (vanilla bean ice cream, macadamia nut ice cream, caramel, and homemade hot fudge).
You can also find Dole Whip here!
- Lappert’s Hawaii, different locations around the islands, so check the website!
Dole Whip 🍨: Have you been to Disney World and enjoyed Dole Whip – the pineapple soft serve treat? You can find it at selected places in Hawaii. #1 place is the Dole Pineapple Plantation on Oahu, but other places serve it throughout the island!
Wing Ice Cream
This is Chinatown’s ice cream parlor in downtown Honolulu on the Island of Oahu, specializing in homemade ice creams from scratch. While you can find the usual flavors like blueberry and mango here, you can also find sundaes, root beer floats, and shaved ice. Shaved ice is a popular favorite around the island and is one of the many dairy-free options you can enjoy.
However, they have classic flavors, but what makes this place truly stand out are the bizarre ice cream flavors, like pizza, cheese, rose petals, black sesame, and pumpkin cheesecake – a treat for the adventurous kind. They’ve also got some lovely vegan options made with coconut milk.
Their signature flavors of ice cream are: Hawaiian vanilla bean, Firecracker (toasted sesame ginger with Thai chili peanut toffee), and Blue Hawai’i (coconut and vanilla).
- Wing Ice Cream Parlour, 1145 Maunakea St. Suite 4, (Entrance on Pauahi st.)
Honolulu, Hawaii 96817
For one-of-a-kind Hawaiian Frost soft serve ice cream, visit local favorite Samurai House in Kalihi. This creamy and refreshing cross between ice cream and Hawaiian shave ice is a sight to behold that will have your taste buds singing – bright and colorful with neon hues. There’s nothing like the Hawaiian Frost soft serve to experience the local taste of Hawaii truly.
Apart from their soft serve, their other must-try items include: Hawaiian Frost float (your choice of soft serve flavor and soda) flavors using natural ingredients like island coffee, yuzu, lychee, coconut, honeydew melon, banana, vanilla, mango, orange, and strawberry; Samurai parfait (soft serve with whipped cream, cornflakes, and chocolate syrup); and Hawaiian Frost shakes (blended with your choice of soft serve and topped with whipped cream)
- Samurai Inc., 738 Umi Street, Honolulu, Hawaii 96819.
Dave’s Ice Cream
From opening the first Dave’s Ice Cream store on Oahu’s west coast in Waianae in 1982, local boy David Leong has come a long way to be labeled among the best ice cream shops in Hawaii.
With over 50 different flavors, most locations have at least 40 on hand at all times. Since they value quality, they use fresh fruit (when available) instead of frozen or canned fruit.
Some innovative flavors include banana mochi berry, poha berry, Azuki beans, Kona coffee, green tea, caramel macadamia, and blue cotton candy. Their must-try items include: Ube (purple yam combined with rich, creamy vanilla ice cream), Green tea, and Rainbow sherbet (an exclusive of Dave’s; a combination of pineapple, passion fruit, and guava).
- Dave’s Ice Cream, different locations so check the website.
Island Cream Co.
If you happen to be at the Lahaina Gateway Mall, you mustn’t miss stopping by the Island Cream Co. They make a uniquely light and smooth dessert that’s is a hybrid between ice cream and delicious gelato. While they specialize in over 150 different flavors, since they prepare all their products fresh daily, you’ll find only 36 flavors available any day.
It’s won tons of awards and considered the top-rated ice cream shop in Hawaii!
They also promise the “ultimate shave ice experience,” their Glacier Ice is only available at their outlet. With over 36 flavors, you are spoiled for choice!
Their must-try items include: Kauai-Karamel with roasted pecans, Macadamia and chocolate frozen banana bars, Lahaina cream, and Strawberry shortcake.
- Island Cream Co., 305 Keawe Street-Suite 511, Lahaina Gateway Mall, Lahaina, HI 96761
Are you a gelato-lover more than ice cream? Thanks to Il Gelato in Honolulu, you can relish award-winning gelato that’s all-natural and made fresh daily using the finest locally grown ingredients or from the best sources in Italy and worldwide.
This place is all about true artisan, handcrafted gelato using traditional Italian processes, original Italian gelato equipment, and their own unique recipes. Il Gelato represents the truly Italian art of making gelato on the tropical paradise island.
At Il Gelato, Hawaiian and Asian flavors are uniquely blended with traditional European gelato making. Their must-try flavors include: Hawaiian apple banana, Chocolate ginger, Old-fashioned chocolate, and Kona coffee.
- Il Gelato, various locations
Coconut Glen – PLEASE DONATE
Not an ice cream parlour per se, this ice cream-centric food truck can be found on Maui making organic vegan ice cream. Coconut is their signature flavor, but you can find lots of others all equally delicious!
- Coconut Glen, Hana Highway, Mile Marker 27 1/2, Nahiku, Maui, HI
Other places in Hawaii to get great ice cream:
- Maui Sweet Shoppe, 1819 S Kihei Rd, Kihei, HI 96753, United States
- Ululani’s Hawaiian Shave Ice, various locations
- Paia Gelato, 99 Hana Hwy C, Paia, HI 96779, United States
- Waiola Shave Ice, various locations
The cherry on top!
You don’t need a hot day to enjoy ice cream in Hawaii. With great ice cream shops spread all over the Hawaiian islands and with such mouthwatering flavors, any time you’re craving a frozen treat, there are so many choices, you won’t be disappointed!
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