Best Store-Bought Vanilla Ice Cream

By Kalei Talwar Posted July 17, 2012
Ice Cream Taste Test

Tasting ice cream in the Food & Wine Test Kitchen; Photo Isabel Slepoy

Think all vanillas are created equal? F&W staff sampled some of the most popular supermarket ice creams to find the creamiest, most deliciously vanilla offerings available for your summer pies. Here, the results, including an interbrand tie for the top spot.

Haagen-Dazs Five


Editor Favorite: Häagen-Dazs Five All-Natural Vanilla Bean, $4.99/pint
“Fantastic.” “This just rocks the house! Awesome all the way around.” “This has such a custardy texture - it's wonderful.” “A little too sweet, but nice strong vanilla flavor and smooth, creamy texture” “ Yummy - I love this one! Such great flavor. Tastes very natural.” “Perfect creaminess. Not too sweet.”



Haagen-Dazs Vanilla Bean


Editor Favorite: Häagen-Dazs Vanilla Bean, $4.99/pint
“So good!! Creamy, good vanilla flavor.” “ Wow, so vanilla-y.” “So delish. Really fantastic, forward vanilla flavor.” “ Very nicely milky! Strong vanilla flavor.”





Stonyfield Organic Gotta Have Vanilla


Stonyfield Organic Gotta Have Vanilla, $4.99/pint
“Sweet and milky!” “Very creamy.” “Yum.” “ Very creamy, milky and clean.” Good but not super vanilla-y. “ Clean and simple tasting.” “ This has such a smooth and creamy texture - nice flavor too.”




Ben & Jerry's Vanilla


Ben & Jerry's Vanilla. $4.49/pint
“Pleasant. Well-balanced.” “ Yum, really nice and creamy - clean vanilla taste.” “Great vanilla flavor with an awesome creaminess.” “Delicious and I like that there isn't too much air.” “Has more of a cooked milk flavor.” “Super sweet and super creamy.”




Edys Grand


Edy's Grand Vanilla Bean, $5.59/1.5 quart
“Very sweet, fluffy. Good kid vanilla” “ Marshmallowy.” “ Too much incorporated air.” “Very basic, a typical supermarket brand. “Surprisingly good.”





Ronnybrook Farm Dairy Vanilla


Ronnybrook Vanilla, $4.99/pound
“Super deluxe milky-ness! Though it's not my favorite flavor-wise.” “More milk flavor than vanilla.” “Good buttery-ness, not as much vanilla flavor.”





Sheer Bliss Vanilla


 Sheer Bliss, $5.99/pint
“Flavor is a little flat” “A little gummy.” “A little bland, but natural tasting.” “ Not too intensely sweet.” “Really creamy and custardy.”





Starbucks Vanilla Bean Frapucchino


Starbucks Vanilla Bean Frapuccino, $4.55/pint
“Not quite right.” “Sweet. Too milkshakey. Looks good with all the vanilla bean specks” “Weird aftertaste…maybe too sweet.” “Texture isn't great - too much air, but flavor is ok.”

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