Tasting sorbets in the Food & Wine test kitchen. Photo Danica Jorge
The totally refreshing and often fat-free cousin of ice cream, sorbet can be creamy, light and completely satisfying. Food & Wine editors sampled some of the most popular offerings on the market to find the best.
Ciao Bella Passion Fruit, $5.99/pint
Sweetened with organic evaporated cane juice, this passion fruit sorbet packs 25 percent of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin C.
"OMG! So love this… my #1." "Tangy, good #1!" "Love!" "Nice flavor." "A little too sweet for me." "Yum!"
Talenti Roman Raspberry, $4.99/pint
Fun fact of the day: Romans ate raspberries in ancient times. This flavor from Talenti Gelato company, which grew from a single store in Dallas, TX to become the largest distributor of gelato in the countr, was loved by Food & Wine editors for its deliciously creamy texture.
"Strong berry flavor, not too sweet, good!" "Frothy and very berry." "Creamy… not tart enough." "Rich raspberry, luscious texture." "Very smooth."
Häagen Dazs Strawberry, $4.99/pint
Häagen Dazs uses both elderberry and North American chokeberry concentrate to enhance this sorbet's color, but our editors found that the strawberry flavor remained uncompromised.
"Creamy and lovely texture, nice strawberry flavor." "Silky but sweet, decent berry flavor." "Creamy, silky, great texture but not so much taste." "Bland and sweet."
Ciao Bella Blackberry Cabernet, $5.99/pint
The addition of red wine to this sophisticated sorbet results in a bold flavor that some editors loved. The short ingredient list and real fruit also make it an antioxidant powerhouse.
"Very nicely balanced flavor, right amount of tang, sweetness, so pretty #1." "Funny aftertaste." "Raisin-ey." "Bold with good depth of flavor." "Super saturated color, very sweet." "Fruity and rich, deep tasting."
Blue Moon Mango Passion, $5.99/pint
Made in Vermont, Blue Moon got its start by suppling local restaurants with sorbet before making pints available all over the Northeast.
“Tastes almost like pure fruit puree, just a bit of sugar, nice.” “Yummy! #1.” “Really bright mango flavor.” “Stale smoothie taste.”
Ciao Bella Coconut, $5.99/pint
This sorbet is made with both flecks of coconut as well as coconut cream, delivering extra tropical flavor and a luscious texture.
"Creamy goodness." "#2. Nice coconut flavor." "Coconut tastes candied." "Like a pina colada minus the booze."
Sharon’s Passion Fruit, $5.49/pint
Sharon’s sorbet has only five ingredients: Passion Fruit, Water, Cane Sugar, Pectin and Guar Gum, a natural thickener.
"Really like it - kicky!" "Tangy and delicious. #2." "So creamy. #3." "Too sour for me." "Mmm! Not sweet at all, very passion-y."
Sotto Zero Backyard Berry, $6.99/pint
Giorgio Klinar, founder of Sotto Zero, learned the art of gelati and sorbetti from his father’s gelateria in Rome. Stateside, the three-year-old brand is quickly expanding in stores and is also available via online delivery.
"Pleasant, fresh berry flavor #1." "Not as sweet as the others. Very fruity; I like the seeds." "Icy and bland but seems very fresh. Needs acid to balance it."
Sharon’s Mango $5.49/pint
Mango Puree is the first ingredient in this all-natural sorbet, making it taste just like the fruit.
"Strong fruit- slighty bitter, creamy texture, somehow though not my fave." "Very clean and natural, almost like eating a real mango. #2." "A little muted and sweet." "Not a huge fan of the texture." "Meh color."
Talenti Blood Orange, $4.99/pint
Both sweet and tart, this sorbet is made with real Sicilian blood oranges.
"A little icy but great flavor." "Good sweetness and slight tart." "Bitter but good. #2." "Perfect balance of sour and sweet, not cloying." "Can taste bitter white pith." "Icky aftertaste, almost medicinal."
Whole Fruit Lemon Sorbet, $4.99/pint
The Whole Foods house brand makes a variety of single flavor sorbets, like this pure lemon version.
“Tart, silky, so good! #1” "tangy, limey." “This is like a lemon hard candy dissolved in water." "Don’t like this at all, though texture is good."
Blue Moon Lemon Zest, $5.99/pint
This sorbet uses freshly squeezed lemon juice, lemon zest and Liquore di Limoni (an Italian lemon liquor) for an ultratart lemony punch.
"So sour!! Very refreshing." "So icy and tart, tongue tingling." "Icy texture but good flavor." "Tart beyond tart." "Much like a super lemony Italian ice. Love this one for sure!"
Pure Gourmet Mojito, $5.99/pint
George Perrier, founder of Philadelphia restaurant Le Bec-Fin, developed the recipe for this mojito-flavored sorbetto.
"So sweet! Icy, more like an Italian ice than sorbet." "A bit soapy lime." "I like the bitterness but not the flavor." "Very sour, tastes like the real deal." "So light and limey, icy but yummy." "Syrupy sweet for me."
Pure Gourmet Tropical Sorbet, $5.99/pint
This sorbet mixes flavors of mango, pineapple, banana and passion fruit.
"Is this banana?" "Tutti frutti?" "Tastes like you’re on a tropical island." "Icy." "Too sticky sweet tasting."