If you want to eat ice cream but stick to your low calorie diet, check out my top 10 favorite low calorie ice creams here!
When it comes to desserts, there’s just something great about ice cream. We loved it as kids in summer, and we have whole shops just for ice cream.
So when it comes to trying to lose weight, where does ice cream fit in? If we want to have a rich ice cream from the ice cream shop, that’s fine. We enjoy it and then leave the shop.
But it can be hard when there is a carton of rich ice cream in our freezer. Having it around to eat day after day can add up calories and make your health goals harder to obtain.
To help you find lower calorie options that actually taste good and can help you meet your health goals, I got a group together to test just about every low calorie ice cream I could find.
I included kids, because they are brutally honest, know what ice cream should taste like, and if they like it you don’t have to buy another kind just for them. It makes it easier when the whole family can eat the same dessert.
Low Calorie Ice Cream Defined
What is ‘low calorie’ ice cream? If we follow the USDA food labeling guidelines, ‘low calorie’ is 40 calories or less. So that might be a spoonful of ice cream. ‘Reduced calorie’ would be 25% less calories than similar products.1 (source)
Because there is no set ‘low calorie’ definition for ice cream I made my own parameters. I tested ice creams that are less than 200 calories/serving.
Some products get tricky and make their serving size smaller so the calories are less. I didn’t fall for that one. I use a bar that’s about the normal size and ⅔ cup as the serving size, except for the non-dairy one, because I could not find a non-dairy ice cream under 200 calories, so I just picked the lowest one I could find.
It was hard to compare all of the ice creams. I used a five star rating, and put a note next to those that were my favorite for “__”, since we all like different types of ice cream at different times hopefully this will give you the info you need to find the treat you want to try next.
No matter what your health goal is, you don’t have to give up all the sweet treats. Choose a lower calorie option and enjoy in moderation. If you’re one that struggles with eating large bowls of ice cream, try one of the bars, it’s already portion controlled for you.
Top Dairy-Based Low Calorie Ice Cream Picks
These are a west coast ice cream bar. Creamies are more firm than most ice cream bars and come in flavors like, root beer float, banana, cookies and cream as well as the classic flavors like chocolate.
Because they have more of a fudgesicle texture they aren’t everyone’s favorite. I find with most low calorie ice creams, they are very airy and feel like they dissolve the second you take a bite, for this reason, I like having Creamies as an option that you can enjoy longer.
- Where to find Creamies: Most grocery stores west of Colorado carry them except for California
- Calories and macros: 1 bar, 120 calories, 4.5g fat, 21g carbs, 3g protein
2) Yasso Frozen Yogurt Bars
“Best ice cream bar”
They might say frozen yogurt, but you’d think it was ice cream. Yasso bars have a nice creamy texture and are full of flavor.
The sea salt caramel was our favorite, it even got a 11/10 from one of the kids. It had a great flavor and was so creamy. The mint chocolate chip is also good, but we didn’t care much for the fudge brownie flavor. It wasn’t very strong and was a little icy.
- Where to find Yasso Bars: Some Costco’s carry these. You can also find them at Target, Walmart and most grocery stores.
- Calories and Macros: 1 bar has only 100 calories, 2 g fat, 16 g carbs, 5g protein
3) Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwich
Skinny Cow Ice cream sandwiches have been around since the 90s and are still going strong. They make multiple types of healthy ice cream dessert. But for this we tried the classic ice cream sandwich. The ice cream is a little icy when you eat it on its own, but when eaten with the cookie outside, it tastes like the classic ice cream sandwich.
We preferred the vanilla ice cream bar to the chocolate one. The chocolate flavor wasn’t very strong and you missed the contrast between the ice cream and cookie.
- Where to find Skinny cow: Walmart, Smith’s, Target.
- Calories and Macros: 1 sandwich has 160 calories, 3.5g fat, 28g carbs, 4g protein
4) Jonny Pops
“Best ice cream bar”
Yes, I know I already used “Best ice cream bar”. But the Jonny Pops Ice Cream bars are seriously too good, we’ll say it’s a tie.
Jonny Pops has a wide selection of healthy ice cream flavors, from mint chocolate dipped, cold press choco latte to some of the best fruit flavors like pineapple coconut and strawberry.
Unlike most low calorie ice creams these are made with only a few ingredients. The strawberry one is made of strawberries, cream, guar gum, sugar, water and salt. And it tastes just like fresh strawberries and cream. These were also a favorite among the kids.
- Where to find Jonny Pops: These are a little harder to find, but most Targets and Sprouts have them and even some Whole Foods stores.
- The calories and macros are: 1 bar, 100 calories, 6g fat, 12 g carbs, 0g protein
5) Halo Top
Coming in at the lowest calorie on for the ice creams, Halo Top is not holding back on taste or texture. I was pleasantly surprised with how good it tasted. It tasted like a normal ice cream without the lingering fatty filling in your mouth after a bite. The strawberry one we tried was a lighter flavor, but maybe their other ones are more flavorful.
- Where to find Halo Top: Most grocery stores carry it including Walmart and Target.
- Calories and macros: ⅔ c, 90 calories, 2 g fat, 19g carbs, 6g protein
6) Krogers Frozen Yogurt
You won’t know this Kroger Frozen Yogurt is low calorie. It tastes just like any other ice cream and has the same texture too. It might be one of the closest to real ice cream, and also one of the highest in calories compared to the other low calorie ice creams.
There are only a few flavors, like chocolate, vanilla and caramel praline.
It’s a budget friendly option. I bought it at Smith’s and it was marked at $2.99. It may be a generic brand, but a few people were surprised it was, because it tasted so good.
- Where to find them: Any Kroger store like Smith’s, King Soopers, or Ralphs.
- Calories and macros : ⅔ c, 170 calories, 3g fat, 33g carbs, 4g protein
7) Dreyer’s/Edy’s Slow Churned Ice Cream
“Closest to real ice cream”
Dreyer’s slow Churned Ice Cream (half the fat) is the other one that is higher in calories but tastes exactly like ice cream. I would say of all the ones we tried this is the closest to normal ice cream. You could serve this and no one would notice.
Plus dryer’s have a better selection of flavors, like mint chocolate chip, coffee, cookies and cream, peanut butter cup and rocky road. If you’re not sure about trying low calorie ice creams this is the one to start with, you won’t be disappointed.
- Where to find Dreyers 1/2 Fat: Just about any grocery store and Walmart or Target.
- Calories and Macros 2/3 c, 160 calories, 4g fat, 27g carbs, 4g protein
8) KIND Frozen Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars
“Best non-dairy ice cream bar”
These Frozen Kind Bars are the highest in calories in this list, and also probably the smallest serving size but I had to put them on the list, because they are amazing. You won’t believe they are non-dairy and are quite decadent with the peanuts and chocolate coating. The serving size may be small but your sweet tooth will be satisfied.
- Where to find them: Some grocery stores and Target.
- Calories and macros: 1 bar, 180 calories, 13g fat, 16g carbs, 4g protein
9) Cado Avocado Frozen Dessert
We tried the deep dark chocolate flavor of Cado Avocado frozen dessert, and it was dark. If you like more bittersweet chocolate desserts then you’ll like this one. The texture is pretty good and creamy.
We weren’t sure if it was just the chocolate flavor, but there was an interesting after taste some of us didn’t care for. It may just be the bittersweet chocolate, so I guess we will have to try any flavor just to be sure.
They have other flavors like mint chocolate chip and cherry amaretto. This was the only dairy free ice cream I could find under 200 calories/serving. I was surprised, but all of the coconut, soy or cashew ones I checked were at 200 calories or more.
- Where to find it: some grocery stores like Smith’s and also Target.
- Calories and macros 1/2c, 170 calories, 12g fat, 18g carbs, 1g protein.
10) Halo Top Fruit Bars
“Best fruit bar”
These Halo Top fruit pops are great when you aren’t in the mood for something creamy or you can’t have dairy. We were all very impressed by these fruit bars, they have about half the calories of normal fruit bars and have a great flavor.
We tried the lime one, which was great, sweet, but still had the tart flavor. After we tested the ice creams a couple of the kids asked for a lime bar. They use sugar and stevia as the sweetener, but you don’t get the strong stevia taste that’s in some drinks. They are the same size as the Outshine bars so you don’t feel like you’re being cheated.
- Where to find them: Most grocery stores have them as well as Walmart and Target.
- Calories and macros: 1 bar, 35 calories, 0g fat, 15 g carbs, 0g protein
11) Outshine Fruit Bars
The only reason these didn’t get the ‘best fruit bar is because they are more calories. They have the same flavor as the Halo Top ones. These are the classic fruit bars. They have quite a few flavors, some of my favorites are lime, tangerine and strawberry. We tried the mango one, which wasn’t too impressive. They also have flavors like peach, watermelon, pineapple and grape. They have variety packs which is nice when you want to switch up the flavors.
The ingredients are simple, not too much added other than the fruit, water and sugar.
- Where to find them: Just about every grocery store carries there’s.
- Calories and macros: 1 bar, 70 calories, 0g fat, 15g carbs, 0g protein
12) Tru Fru Chocolate Raspberries
“Best fruit and chocolate”
When you want fruit but also chocolate, these are your answers. They are the perfect little treat when you just want a bite or two. Each piece of fruit is dipped in white and then dark chocolate. It’s perfect because each berry is separate. You can have a few pieces or dish up a bowl. They have other fruits like cherries, strawberries in milk chocolate, blueberries and pineapple with white chocolate and coconut.
- Where to find them: Some grocery stores have them, Target and Costco.
- Calories and macros 3 pieces, 90 calories, 5g fat, 11 carbs, 1g protein
Now that you found the one you want to try, let us know what you think. Are there any other low calorie ice creams you like?