The Best Ice Cream Spots to Get the Best Scoops, Sundaes, and Soft Serve in Philly

December 17, 2021
Food & Drink
jason wolfe

The intense heat and humidity in Philly can sometimes be unbearable. And what better way to beat the heat and cool off with a delightful scoop of ice cream? From an over-the-top sundae to rich gelatos to a Thai-style treat as well as excellent scoops of vanilla, Philly has something for everyone who wants a refreshing treat to indulge.

Here is where you should go when the craving for ice creams hits while you’re in Philadelphia.

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Arctic Scoop

1812 E Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19148 facebook.com

Enjoy classic flavors inspired by ice cream vendors from Thailand!

If you have never had a Thai-style treat before, now is the time to try it out. And the best place to enjoy the classic flavors of Hong Kong-style treats is Arctic Scoop in East Passyunk. Inspired by ice cream vendors from Thailand, this ice cream spot is known for serving delicious flavors including vanilla, taro, bean, and pandan – which can be served in Thai-inspired coconut bowls or a honeycomb egg waffle.

When you visit, make sure you try exceptional flavors like taro pint mixed with ube that is light and mildly sweet with a pleasant nutty flavor. The strawberry cheesecake milkshake and some homemade ice cream pints are also great options to try. They also allow ice cream lovers to create their own cups with plenty of options to choose from.

If you love something chocolaty, there are plenty of options but you will never go wrong with the dark chocolate cookie dough that is cookie dough flavored ice cream with cookie dough pieces and a generous amount of dark chocolate chips. You can also have a smoothie or milkshake to enjoy along with the delicious scoop.

Custard & Cakes Creamery

5461 Ridge Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19128 custardcakescreamery.com

Old-school ice cream spot serving hard and soft treats including frozen cakes on-site!

Colorful and delicious is the perfect word to describe the treats at Custard and Cakes Creamery. It’s so fun and whimsical that most Philadelphians flock here to get a taste of what’s on the menu. It’s a haven for line-inducing frozen treats. An extensive menu filled with homemade hand-dipped soft serve and ice creams, plus sundaes, shakes, and splits made with an equally extensive list of toppings is a clear indication that there’s something for everyone at this family-owned spot.

Not sure what to order, why not start with a soft-serve like vanilla or pineapple dole whip. If you want something hard, go for the homemade and hand-scooped vanilla and chocolate options. You can create your own sundae with a choice of ice cream, whipped cream, one topping, and a cherry on top. And you get to choose from different flavors including hot fudge, caramel, pineapples, crushed cherries, wet walnuts, and more.

Want something extra, you can have their delicious milkshakes and glaciers or even try their banana splits. They are worth every penny!

The Franklin Fountain

116 Market St, Philadelphia, PA 19106 franklinfountain.com

Classic ice cream parlor serving exceptional scoops in an old-timey space!

Part of the fun of coming to The Franklin Fountain is to watch bow-tied staff dispensing classic ice cream flavors and soda treats in an old-school setting. Located in the heart of Philly, this soda shop not only serves classic flavors that you can’t find anywhere else but also dishes the best sundaes in town. Specifically, they offer nine sundae options, with delicious flavors that Philadelphians seem not to get enough of.

Go ahead and try favorites like “Have A Heart,” strawberry and vanilla ice creams with whipped cream, strawberry compote, pink sprinkles, and arrowroot cookies, or the “Franklin Mint,” mint chip and vanilla ice creams with chocolate and mini syrups, whipped cream, and marshmallow sauce.

If you still want the ice cream scoop, try a couple of flavors including traditional Philadelphia-style vanilla bean, chocolate chip, peanut butter, rocky road, hydrox cookies, coconut, and more. They also serve sugar-free flavors especially the vegan ice creams that feature a rotating selection of vegan flavors including vegan vanilla, strawberry, hydrox, and Kona macadamia nib. Stop in any time of the day and explore some delicious treats on the menu.

Weckerly’s Ice Cream

9 W Girard Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19123 weckerlys.com

Charming shop that serves a seasonal array of small-batch, custardy ice cream made from organic milk!

Jen Weckerle and Andy Satinsky’s popular ice cream parlor has been the talk of the town since opening its doors in 2012. Here, master chef Weckerle whips up the mix-ins and experiments with new flavors and unique creations from her kitchen. All the products are made with locally sourced organic milk and cream.

Guest can expect to enjoy delicious ice cream sandwiches, creative scoops, pops, pints, and a variety of dessert delicacies. If you’re wondering, the ice cream sandwiches come in four flavors including black and white (chocolate and vanilla ice cream on house-baked chocolate chip cookies), orange cream and cranberry, and peppermint cocoa (milk chocolate ice cream with chocolate cake chips on white chocolate marbled cocoa wafers).

You can also find pints of seasonally changing flavors and unique ice pops and pies thanks to their partnership with Jeanne Chang’s Lil Pop Shop. Be on the lookout for Popalong, their adorable net treats truck that makes appearances at events around Philadelphia.

ScoopAffles Ice Cream Parlor

3310 Welsh Rd, Philadelphia, PA 19136  facebook.com

Fun ice cream shop serving unique flavors and plenty of toppings!

Another addition to the ice cream favorites is ScoopAffles Ice Cream Parlor. The scoops offered here are made from scratch and provide a delicious, smooth, velvety feel. They take pride in using only fresh and natural ingredients to make the best ice cream that makes you feel refreshed.

ScoopAffles serves a wide array of amazing flavors to try. You should try options such as hand-dipped ice cream and homemade waffle cones as well as colored bowls. Each bowl is carefully prepared to create that pleasing and tasty experience.

Apart from amazing ice cream treats, the staff here is super friendly and the atmosphere is lively to ensure you enjoy your order fully. With lots of classic and special flavors, it’s tough to settle on just one. You might as well try a couple of them until you find what really fits your appetite needs!

D’Emilio’s Old World Ice Treats

1928 E Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19148 facebook.com

Indulge in the finest scoops in Philly including an extensive array of unique flavors at this popular parlor!

In the East Passyunk is another local favorite, D’Emilio’s Old World Ice Treats.  Everything at this ice cream chain feels classic, from the soft-serve ice cream served in a cone to water ice that is built on an old family recipe.

If you’re really going for it, you can try the Gelati with an option to choose the ice treat flavor you want to be mixed with your ice cream. Also, be sure to try their signature sundaes like the pretzel sundae or the massive strawberry crunch cakes which are perfect for a long summer night.

All their products are made with fresh, creative, and high-quality ingredients with enough twists to make the experience great. Their flavor rotates seasonally, so make sure you check often on what is currently new on the menu.

Bassetts Ice Cream

45 N 12th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107 bassettsicecream.com

Enjoy more than 40 ice cream flavors sold by the cup, cone, and container at this neighborhood parlor!

With a history dating back to 1861 and more than six generations old, the Bassetts Ice Cream brand has been serving delicious scoops over the original marble counter of their popular Reading Terminal Market stand. Here, you get over 40 unique flavors for nearly every palate, including old favorites such as Cookies and Cream, Butter Pecan, and Mint Chocolate Chip, as well as modern treats such as Cinnamon, Pumpkin, and Matcha.

Step up to the marble bar to revel in unique vanilla scoops such as salted caramel pretzel, rum raisin, cherry vanilla, and raspberry truffle, or more experimental flavors like peanut butter swirl, or even soda shop classics such as banana splits and root beer floats.

They also serve seasonal flavors such as pumpkin and egg nog. All these flavors can be enjoyed in a cone, cup, or hand-packed container. Ice cream fans can taste all these creative flavors and more at the Terminal or a variety of fine restaurants, local dip shops, and retail markets. Look out for new flavors on the menu such as chocolate fudge brownie.


No matter what the season is, ice cream just hits differently. The creamy sweetness makes the perfect ending to any meal. So, if you’re looking for the best spot to grab soft serve and sundaes, check out these ice cream spots in Philly. What is your favorite scoop? Let us know in the comments!

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