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California Ice Cream and Frozen Desserts


It used to be that you would only talk about one frozen dessert and when you did, you may be thinking about Baskin Robbins, for instance. Oh, the good 'ol days! California where there's sunshine and year round warm climate loves its iced desserts ranging from frappes and mocha blends at Starbucks, to green tea frozen yogurt, or a dulce gelato. The hottest franchise or new business is cool treats served frozen. Some start their own unique shops with personal recipes, while others buy into franchises such as Cold Stone Creamery, where the business offers brand, a unique product, and the supply line to deliver consistency to each shop.



(1/2 cup, unless noted otherwise)
Saturated Fats (Grams) Cholesterol (mgs) Total Fat* (grams) Calories from Fat** (%) Total Calories Sodium (mg)

Frozen desserts

Ice pop/bar (1 pop) 0.0 0 0.0 0 55 9
Gelato 0.0   15   240  
Fruit ice/Italian ice 0.0 0 1.0 0 124 0
Sorbet, lemon 0.1 0 0.3 2 125 18
Frozen fudge bar, (1 bar) 0.1 1 0.2 2 98 124
Frozen yogurt, fruit or vanilla, nonfat 0.1 2 0.2 2 82 39
Frozen yogurt, fruit or vanilla, lowfat 0.7 4 1.1 10 99 57
Frozen dairy dessert; less than 3% fat 0.9 4 1.4 11 116 25
Sherbert, orange 1.1 5 1.9 13 132 44
Ice milk, vanilla, soft serve 1.5 10 2.3 19 111 62
Ice milk, vanilla, hard 1.8 9 2.8 27 92 56
Frozen yogurt, whole milk, fruit or vanilla 2.1 10 3.2 25 115 55
Pudding pop, chocolate (1 pop) 2.5 1 2.2 28 72 77
Ice cream, vanilla, regular 4.5 29 7.3 50 132 53
Ice cream, french vanilla, soft serve 6.4 45 12.0 61 178 41
Ice cream, vanilla, rich; 16% fat 7.4 45 12.0 61 178 41
Ice cream, chocolate, premium; 23% fat 9.1 98 15.3 64 216 33

Gelatin & Pudding

Gelatin, made with water 0.0 0 0.0 0 80 57
Chocolate pudding, ready to eat (5 oz. package) 1.0 5 5.7 27 189 183


The trend we've seen during this tougher, leaner economy has surprisingly been toward the opening of more ice cream and dessert shops in California--and especially at beaches. The advantage to this type of business is the smaller store space it requires, less overhead and inventory of desserts, and less buy-in to launch.


In the past year alone in an Orange County beach town, we've seen the Main Street go from 2 iced dessert shops -- Baskin Robbins & a Cold Stone Creamery-to 6 desert shops--the original 2, plus 4--one sells cookie ice cream sandwiches in which you pick your cookie and your ice cream flavor (it replaced a candy store); a Cefiore frozen yogurt shop which replaced a Wetzel Pretzel; a gelato shop which replaced a clothing store; and a New Zealand Ice Cream, which went into a new space.  We can only surmise that this hot, new business holds strong for the entrepreneur seeking to make a living. One thing that's happening at an increasing rate--more melted desserts are hitting the pavement, making for colorful messes. Just watch out for the sticky when you walk along your favorite California beach boardwalk. 


Comparisons: Gelato is prepared from whole or low fat milk and a small amount of cream, with lower butterfat than ice cream. It is difficult to freeze gelato, which is why it is prepared and stored in smaller batches. In the manufacturing process of ice cream, air is added so that the volume of the ice cream is higher, and so that it is easy to scoop. Gelato is churned slowly to avoid air, making it creamier, minus the heavy calories that you consume with ice cream.  Gelato is maintained at a temperature about ten to fifteen degrees higher than ice cream, because of its high density. This means that a scoop of gelato is firm, but not hard, like ice cream.




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