• 12. The Original

    Good Humor calls this bar The Original—vanilla ice cream with a hard chocolate shell. Safe to say it’s a classic I will not be passing on to my progeny. While I’m not advocating for artisanal ice cream here, the stuff made you crave water after every bite. Classics should be simple, agreed, but The Original hits the same dull note over and over again.

  • 11. Chocolate Eclair

    Whenever this is handed to me, I always think to myself, “Why am I not eating strawberry shortcake?” The chocolate overpowers the cake crumbs, which is the only redeeming part of this bar. Also, we’re talking ice-cream truck ice cream here—dropping the word “eclair” isn’t going to sway anyone.

  • 10. The King Cone

    This is a poor man’s version of the original Drum Stick—the peanut-coated ice cream ball that is sometimes filled in the center with chocolate or caramel. While this cone was lined with chocolate, it wasn’t nearly as crunchy as its competitor. Plus the peanuts tasted like they were sprayed with bleach.

  • 9. Cyclone

    Certainly flashier looking when compared to its brother Big Stick, the swirl design ensures that you taste all flavors in every bite. But it lacks the icy component that you want in a popsicle; it’s more slushy if anything.

  • 8. Oreo Bar

    It’s essentially a McFlurry in bar form—crunchy Oreo bits, perfectly coated over a hard chocolate shell. But in all honesty, McD’s does it better.

  • 7. Big Stick

    The most patriotic of the bunch, the Big Stick harkens back to scorching hot summer camp days when the thought of melty chocolate running down your elbows was something to avoid at all costs. My main man here Big Stick quenches thirst.

  • 6. Coconut

    These paletas always boast a super concentrated flavor; that’s a good quality to have, especially when there are surprise shreds of coconut to dig out.

  • 5. Ice Cream Sandwich

    The ice cream sandwich is like my favorite diner back in Los Angeles: my memories of it are always fonder than the food that’s put on my plate. Do I keep going back? Do I keep insisting it’s one of the greats? Hell yeah I do.

  • 4. Strawberry Shortcake

    Always my grandma’s favorite, the strawberry shortcake is one of the GOAT ice-cream bars. It doesn’t matter that the strawberry doesn’t taste like the actual fruit—it’s just tart enough to offset the richness from the cake crumbs. Don’t argue with Nana, anyway. It’s not polite.

  • 3. SpongeBob SquarePants

    The genre of character ice-cream bars is a truck staple—from Bugs Bunny, to Mickey Mouse, they’ve long held court as the OGs. That alone makes them a top-five contender. The stoner humor of this Nickelodeon legend gets an extra dose of love thanks to its deformed shape and its commonality with Kool-Aid more so than with ice cream. Buckteeth and all, we all know the real prize here is the bleeding, blue gumball eye.

  • 2. Chocolate Chip Cookie Sandwich

    While it’s true I’m partial to cookie and ice-cream combos (remember the WWE bars?), the chocolate chip cookie sandwich hits everything I’m looking for: chewy, slightly salty cookies, crunchy mini chips, and the right melt factor. Melt factor, you ask? We all know that the thaw rate of ice cream varies widely. The melt factor of this ice cream is steady, meaning it won’t turn into a dripping mush. The architecture is sound; the cookie house has good bones.

  • 1. Snow Cone

    The Snow Cone holds a special place among fans who understand that you can really only find this particular species at the neighborhood truck. The tri-color cone reads strawberry, blue raspberry, and lemon, but what you’re really tasting is sugar, not any distinct flavor. That’s forgiven because the Snow Cone uses the best type of ice: the chipped, flakey kind that you find at your local diner. Veterans of the trade know to show patience, for at the bottom—after hacking away shards of ice—is a sweet, purple elixir; a welcome shot you can throw back after a hard day’s work.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Follow @bgardner