Nothing tastes quite as cool, refreshing or sweet as ice cream in the summer. Whether you prefer a cone or a cup, one scoop or three, the hot weather is a perfect excuse to indulge in a trip to the local ice cream parlor.
As the saying goes: You scream, I scream, we all scream for ice cream! If you’re looking for a treat that’s a cut above anything you’ll find in a box at the grocery store, we’ve got your definitive guide to the best place to go for ice cream in Indianapolis:
Square Scoop – Virginia Ave.
Strolling around Fountain Square for the day with your friends? Well, stroll on over to Square Scoop for ice cream that’s sourced directly from a local creamery. This old-fashioned style ice cream parlor has tons of charm — and tons of flavors. If you’re a traditionalist, you’ll love their Madagascar Vanilla bean ice cream or the Sticky Chewy Chocolate, but don’t shy away from more exotic flavors like Lemoreo (lemon and Oreo cookies) or Honey Lavender.
BRICS – E. 64th St.
Located by the old Broad Ripple Station, BRICS is a year-round stand with hand-pressed and rolled waffle cones and more than 40 flavors of delicious ice cream. If you’ve been walking the Monon Trail, reward yourself for a day well spent with a double scoop of French Silk and Broad Ripple Black Berry.
Lick Ice Cream – Brookside Ave.
If you’re an adventurous soul who is a fan of exotic flavor combinations, Lick Ice Cream is the place for you. This home-grown business inside the Circle City Industrial Complex started in 2010 and includes joys like Balsamic Dark Chocolate, Gingersnap Lemon Curd and Salted Caramel Sage.
Cone & Crumb – Park St. (Westfield)
This is ice cream made the traditional way: just milk, cream, sugar and whatever flavoring elements are needed for variety (no egg). You can find traditional mixtures, like Fireside S’mores, right alongside vegan options like Coconut Cherry Basil. Don’t feel like heading out into the heat but still want ice cream? No worries! You can even order delivery from Cone & Crumb via GrubHub.
TeeJay’s Sweet Tooth – Purdue Rd.
Okay, if there’s anything slightly better than ice cream, it might be an ice cream sandwich. At TeeJay’s you can pick a flavor of ice cream and get it served as a sandwich between delicious cookies, glazed doughnut halves, Rice Krispie treat shells and more. If that’s not your thing, you may want to try one of their milkshakes with a cake-frosted edible trim.
Gordon’s Milkshake Bar – Massachusetts Ave.
Owned and operated by Chef Carl Gordon, this is the place to go when you want to step out of the ordinary flavor zone and step into the extraordinary. You’ll find plenty of handcrafted ice cream and milkshake confections here, including vegan and dairy-free varieties — but why limit yourself? Feel free to add in a brownie or a slice of pie; everything here is uniquely customizable.
Circles Ice Cream – Fulton St.
This independent creamery is part of the “pop-up” trend in culinary adventures, so it appears (and disappears) suddenly in various locations — so grab some when you see the sign go up. If you don’t want to wait, you can also grab a go-to order online from Circles at Fulton St. Every micro-batch of ice cream is hand packed, and they specialize in flavors that elevate mere “dessert” into an art form. Consider a pint of their Coffee Cake Crumble and dairy-free Key Lime Pie for a special treat.
Traders Point Creamery – Moore Rd. (Zionsville)
Traders Point is a fabulous place to go for a meal — and even better if you love all things dairy. Their creamery is stocked with farm-fresh milk, artisanal cheeses, homemade eggnog and (of course) ice cream. They always have a few standard flavors on hand (vanilla, chocolate and strawberry), but you can’t go wrong trying some of their seasonal varieties either — like Coffee Chocolate Chip.
Handel’s Homemade Ice Cream – E. 14th St. (Carmel), E. 116th St. (Fishers)
Handel’s has been crafting homemade ice cream and frozen yogurt since 1945, and they’re known for creating blends with an exceptionally creamy texture. This is definitely the place to go if you’re looking for a “full-fat, full-flavor” option. As those in the nearly permanent line of customers waiting for their turn will attest: This place really knows their ice cream.
Sub Zero Nitrogen Ice Cream – Massachusetts Ave., Castleton Square
Originating in Utah, this is another of Indy’s adopted culinary delights — and oh, is it ever delightful! If you’re looking for a decidedly modern twist on ice cream desserts, you’ll love Sub Zero. They use liquid nitrogen to instantly freeze your customized dessert, and you can find absolutely wild flavors there, like their Chocolate Cherry Charge or Peach Melba.
Wyliepalooza Ice Cream Emporium – Washington St., E. 54h St.
With two locations and almost seven dozen super-premium flavors from which to pick, you can’t go wrong if you decide to check out this family-owned ice cream parlor. Wyliepalooza is also the perfect place to visit if you have anybody in your crowd who has special dietary needs since you’ll also find gluten-free and soy-free options, espresso, bubble tea and milkshakes.
That’s it! There’s the scoop (pun intended) on some of the best spots in Indy and the surrounding area for ice cream. The next time the day feels just a little too warm for comfort or the kids seem restless, you’ll know exactly where to go for a refreshing (and delicious) respite.