The 14 Best Ice Cream Shops in Atlanta
Cool off at these classic spots for gelato, soft serve, or a good old-fashioned vanilla cone.
Outside of the sun itself, there’s probably nothing more synonymous with the summer than ice cream. The popular frozen treat serves as a gift for the youngsters, as well as a nostalgic reminder to adults when life was much simpler. Atlanta can get really hot during the months of July and August, so it's only right that it provides plenty of options to help you cool off. Whether you fancy traditional ice cream, gelato, or sorbet, you can easily find what you’re looking for within the city’s limits. With that being said, take a look at our guide to the best ice cream shops Atlanta has to offer.
Ice cream comes in all different shapes and sizes, so if you’re a fan of that old school, soft serve consistency, then this establishment is the place for you. Made from local ingredients, Big Softie uses Georgia dairy, as well as organic cane sugar in their products. The toppings and cones are all made in-house, which only adds to the down-home flavor here. Ice cream options include classic vanilla, and chocolate, or you can go vegan with their oat vanilla, matcha, and strawberry sorbet. The topping choices are endless, and the finished cone makes for a perfect photo on Instagram.
Handmade ice cream from scratch?—count us in. On top of that, Where’s The Scoops doesn’t add any preservatives or additives, which gives their products the freshest taste. For aesthetics, the ice cream is frozen right in front of customers, then rolled to create their unique small batch, which also includes fruit and other ingredients depending on the season. On Saturdays you can also learn how to roll your own ice cream if you take their weekend classes for only $25. The menu also boasts favorites such as the Nutty Zak, the Chocolate Wasted, and the Morning Glory. Be sure to bring your appetite.
Located in historic downtown Chamblee, this ice cream shop was formerly a train caboose, now it’s the one of the best spots to grab a creamy treat in the Atlanta Metropolitan area. Open year round, they carry 36 flavors that are all locally made. Here, you can purchase traditional ice cream, shakes, malts, and floats, along with an array of sundae selections including the Crack in the Track and The Coal Train.
Helmed by a graduate of Atlanta’s Spelman College, Cathy’s serves top notch, gourmet ice cream sandwiches. You’ve got seven cookie options to pick from, such as chocolate chip, brownie, snickerdoodle, peanut butter and more, and even more ice cream options to throw in between. Cathy’s also offers delicious cookie kits that can become addictive.
If you went to Georgia State University or just enjoyed hanging out in the Downtown area over the past few years, then you were probably one of the first to enjoy Sweet Stack Creamery’s incredible flavors and their trademark sweet stacks. The heavenly creations that share their namesake combine ice cream and heat-pressed donuts or cookies to make a truly one-of-a-kind ice cream sandwich. Trust us, you don’t want to let summer pass you by without trying one
If you’re looking for another way to get your ice cream fix that is equally refreshing and aesthetically pleasing, then IScream Ice Cream Rolls should be your go-to. Founded in 2018 and located on the street level of Underground Atlanta, IScream specializes in fully customized, single serving, made-to-order ice cream that’s beautifully presented in rolls. With coffee and signature creations also available, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t get your roll on.
Edgewood Retail District
To go even deeper down the ice cream rabbit hole, you have to try nitrogen ice cream, and Amir’s Nitrogen Ice Parlor is the perfect place to test the waters. If you’re really interested in understanding the science behind it all, the website for Amir’s Parlor does an excellent job of explaining, but really all you need to know is that the shop uses liquid nitrogen to make hand-crafted, fresh to order ice cream—and it’s good as hell.
Jake’s Ice Cream is a classic shop with an unbelievable variety of flavors, making it one of Atlanta’s go-tos for frozen treats that you can’t find in a typical grocery store. The shop boasts five variations of vanilla and nearly a dozen different chocolate flavors, and it also gives you plenty of options on how you can enjoy your ice cream. If you live in the Tri-Cities, Old Fourth Ward, and Inman Park areas, you can have it delivered directly to your home, or you can give any—or all—of them a try the next time you hit the BeltLine.
Old Fourth Ward
This is the one of the only companies in Atlanta making its ice cream from scratch. What’s that mean? For starters, it means that it’s damn good. From homemade marshmallows to vegan flavors (like Black Pearl), this shop knows how to think outside the box, or pint. With summertime flavors like Guava Cheesecake returning to the shop’s menu, now is the perfect time to pay the queen a visit.
Old Fourth Ward
Honey fig, fresh mint, brown butter, Meyer lemon—are you drooling yet? Honeysuckle has some of the creamiest flavors in the city. Stop by the original shop at Ponce City Market to pick up a scoop and make it a sandwich. Choose between brownie, pie crust, or donuts for the ultimate delectable treat. Don’t want a scoop? Pick up a milkshake instead. Also, portions of the profits go to the Atlanta Community Food Bank, so your meals mean a meal for someone else.
This ice cream shop, owned by a former pharmaceutical rep, takes the production of great ice cream seriously. Morelli’s ice cream is as thick as it is creamy. And its signature salted caramel is totally worth a visit to the East Atlanta location. The spot is also known for churning out some crazy flavors, too: sweet corn, oatmeal cream pie, krispy kreamier, dark chocolate chili, and rosewater are just a few. Visit the online library for the full... scoop (sorry not sorry).
Decatur, Old Fourth Ward
Small-batch? Check. From scratch? Double check. Both the BeltLine and Decatur locations of Butter & Cream offer about 20 flavors at any given time, made with real cream right behind the counter. Honeycomb Forest, Cashew Creme Brulee, and Blueberry Lemon should top your list of flavors to try first. If you’re lactose-intolerant, rest easy, as the dairy-free sorbets, like Grapefruit Campari and Good Word Brewing Passion, are also excellent. And sprinkles are always free, so go crazy, you animal.
For those looking for a little scoop of Italy, Paolo’s has some gelato just for you. The flavor you should absolutely demolish is the “Stracciatella,” a scrumptious blend of milk-based gelato and rich chocolate shavings. It’s the right amount of sweet, no matter your palate. Get a second scoop of one of his floral ice creams—lavender or rose. If you happen to run into Paolo, ask him his favorite scoop. He has a habit of whipping up some unique one-offs.
Another ice cream spot serving up delicious gelato is Cremalosa, the Decatur sweets shop led by pastry chef and food writer Meridith Ford. In addition to a bevy of gelato flavors, visitors can also try Cremalosa’s cake pops, sorbetto, and boozy milkshakes like The Elvis—a peanut butter and banana pudding gelato concoction with a healthy dose of bourbon whiskey.