Did your favorite flavor make the list?
The transition from 2016 to 2017 felt like one of those rare generational upheavals. Though often times, years blend seamlessly into one another, from the White House on down, this past year brought a lot of change. However, if all that uncertainty has left you feeling unsettled, remember that you can always take solace by turning to that one bedrock of annual consistency: the top ten Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream flavors.
Yes, once again, those ice cream-making Vermont hippies (“hippies” now being a fully-owned subsidy of Unilever) Ben & Jerry's has released its list of the brand’s top flavors for the previous year. And the most surprising revelation is that almost nothing has changed. Your top ten are, in order, Half Baked, Cherry Garcia, The Tonight Dough, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Chocolate Fudge Brownie, Americone Dream, Phish Food, Chunky Monkey, Strawberry Cheesecake, and Salted Caramel Core.
Compared to the 2016 list, only one flavor moved: The Tonight Dough—the pint made in honor of the Jimmy Fallon-hosted late-night talk show—jumped up two spots from number five to number three. Seeing as The Tonight Dough, introduced in 2015, is the newest flavor on the list, that increased popularity makes sense, but at the same time, it seems a bit odd that nothing else budged from 2016 to 2017. Talk about people being set in their ways!
But things get even creepier if you go back another year. Here’s your top 10 from 2015: Half Baked, Cherry Garcia, Chocolate Fudge Brownie, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Phish Food, Americone Dream, Chunky Monkey, The Tonight Dough, Strawberry Cheesecake, and Salted Caramel Core. Yup, that’s that exact same ten flavors in only a slightly different order! You gotta be kidding, right?
Nope, we haven’t seen a major shakeup in the Ben & Jerry’s top ten flavors since way back in 2014. That year, Coffee Toffee Bar Crunch had the number seven spot and Peanut Butter Cup eked into the number ten spot. The Tonight Dough hadn’t been released yet, explaining its absence, and Salted Caramel Core didn’t make the cut. Even then, the list is still very similar to previous incarnations.
So what’s with all these flavors’ steadfastness? Well, part of it almost certainly has to do with demand and supply: Ben & Jerry’s is going to make more pints of the flavors that are the most popular. In that way, these lists can become a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy. But also, ice cream can be seen as a comfort food. And what’s more comforting than consistency?